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Sample records for antimicrobial peptide form

  1. Transmembrane Pores Formed by Human Antimicrobial Peptide LL-37

    SciTech Connect

    Qian, Shuo

    2011-01-01

    Human LL-37 is a multifunctional cathelicidin peptide that has shown a wide spectrum of antimicrobial activity by permeabilizing microbial membranes similar to other antimicrobial peptides; however, its molecular mechanism has not been clarified. Two independent experiments revealed LL-37 bound to membranes in the {alpha}-helical form with the axis lying in the plane of membrane. This led to the conclusion that membrane permeabilization by LL-37 is a nonpore carpet-like mechanism of action. Here we report the detection of transmembrane pores induced by LL-37. The pore formation coincided with LL-37 helices aligning approximately normal to the plane of the membrane. We observed an unusual phenomenon of LL-37 embedded in stacked membranes, which are commonly used in peptide orientation studies. The membrane-bound LL-37 was found in the normal orientation only when the membrane spacing in the multilayers exceeded its fully hydrated value. This was achieved by swelling the stacked membranes with excessive water to a swollen state. The transmembrane pores were detected and investigated in swollen states by means of oriented circular dichroism, neutron in-plane scattering, and x-ray lamellar diffraction. The results are consistent with the effect of LL-37 on giant unilamellar vesicles. The detected pores had a water channel of radius 2333 {angstrom}. The molecular mechanism of pore formation by LL-37 is consistent with the two-state model exhibited by magainin and other small pore-forming peptides. The discovery that peptide-membrane interactions in swollen states are different from those in less hydrated states may have implications for other large membrane-active peptides and proteins studied in stacked membranes.

  2. Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Bahar, Ali Adem; Ren, Dacheng

    2013-01-01

    The rapid increase in drug-resistant infections has presented a serious challenge to antimicrobial therapies. The failure of the most potent antibiotics to kill “superbugs” emphasizes the urgent need to develop other control agents. Here we review the history and new development of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), a growing class of natural and synthetic peptides with a wide spectrum of targets including viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasites. We summarize the major types of AMPs, their modes of action, and the common mechanisms of AMP resistance. In addition, we discuss the principles for designing effective AMPs and the potential of using AMPs to control biofilms (multicellular structures of bacteria embedded in extracellular matrixes) and persister cells (dormant phenotypic variants of bacterial cells that are highly tolerant to antibiotics). PMID:24287494

  3. Alarin but not its alternative-splicing form, GALP (Galanin-like peptide) has antimicrobial activity

    SciTech Connect

    Wada, Akihiro; Wong, Pooi-Fong; Hojo, Hironobu; Hasegawa, Makoto; Ichinose, Akitoyo; Llanes, Rafael; Kubo, Yoshinao; Senba, Masachika; Ichinose, Yoshio

    2013-05-03

    Highlights: • Alarin inhibits the growth of E. coli but not S. aureus. • Alarin’s potency is comparable to LL-37 in inhibiting the growth of E. coli. • Alarin can cause bacterial membrane blebbing. • Alalin does not induce hemolysis on erythrocytes. -- Abstract: Alarin is an alternative-splicing form of GALP (galanin-like peptide). It shares only 5 conserved amino acids at the N-terminal region with GALP which is involved in a diverse range of normal brain functions. This study seeks to investigate whether alarin has additional functions due to its differences from GALP. Here, we have shown using a radial diffusion assay that alarin but not GALP inhibited the growth of Escherichia coli (strain ML-35). The conserved N-terminal region, however, remained essential for the antimicrobial activity of alarin as truncated peptides showed reduced killing effect. Moreover, alarin inhibited the growth of E. coli in a similar potency as human cathelicidin LL-37, a well-studied antimicrobial peptide. Electron microscopy further showed that alarin induced bacterial membrane blebbing but unlike LL-37, it did not cause hemolysis of erythrocytes. In addition, alarin is only active against the gram-negative bacteria, E. coli but not the gram-positive bacteria, Staphylococcus aureus. Thus, these data suggest that alarin has potentials as an antimicrobial and should be considered for the development in human therapeutics.

  4. Rational design of artificial β-strand-forming antimicrobial peptides with biocompatible properties.

    PubMed

    Rapsch, Karsten; Bier, Frank F; von Nickisch-Rosenegk, Markus

    2014-10-06

    Because the intensive use of antibiotics has led to a large variety of resistant bacterial strains, therapeutic measures have become increasingly challenging. In order to ensure reliable treatment of diseases, alternative antimicrobial agents need to be explored. In this context, antimicrobial peptides have been discussed as novel bioactive molecules, which, however, may be limited in their applicability due to their high manufacturing costs and poor pharmacokinetic properties. Consequently, the design of artificial antimicrobial peptides featuring two flanking cationic regions and a hydrophobic center is presented. These sequences led to distinct antimicrobial activity on the same order of magnitude as that of naturally occurring reference peptides but with less cytotoxic or cytostatic drawbacks. Furthermore, a deletion and substitution library revealed the minimal sequence requirements. By analysis of the computed 3D structures of these peptides, a single characteristic β-strand was identified. This structural motif was pivotal for antimicrobial activity. Consequently, an optimized peptide sequence with antimicrobial and biocompatible properties was derived, and its application was demonstrated in a mixed culture experiment. Thus, it was shown that the optimized artificial antimicrobial peptide is suitable as a therapeutic agent and may be used as template for the development of new antimicrobial peptides with unique secondary structures.

  5. Antimicrobial Peptides in 2014

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Guangshun; Mishra, Biswajit; Lau, Kyle; Lushnikova, Tamara; Golla, Radha; Wang, Xiuqing

    2015-01-01

    This article highlights new members, novel mechanisms of action, new functions, and interesting applications of antimicrobial peptides reported in 2014. As of December 2014, over 100 new peptides were registered into the Antimicrobial Peptide Database, increasing the total number of entries to 2493. Unique antimicrobial peptides have been identified from marine bacteria, fungi, and plants. Environmental conditions clearly influence peptide activity or function. Human α-defensin HD-6 is only antimicrobial under reduced conditions. The pH-dependent oligomerization of human cathelicidin LL-37 is linked to double-stranded RNA delivery to endosomes, where the acidic pH triggers the dissociation of the peptide aggregate to release its cargo. Proline-rich peptides, previously known to bind to heat shock proteins, are shown to inhibit protein synthesis. A model antimicrobial peptide is demonstrated to have multiple hits on bacteria, including surface protein delocalization. While cell surface modification to decrease cationic peptide binding is a recognized resistance mechanism for pathogenic bacteria, it is also used as a survival strategy for commensal bacteria. The year 2014 also witnessed continued efforts in exploiting potential applications of antimicrobial peptides. We highlight 3D structure-based design of peptide antimicrobials and vaccines, surface coating, delivery systems, and microbial detection devices involving antimicrobial peptides. The 2014 results also support that combination therapy is preferred over monotherapy in treating biofilms. PMID:25806720

  6. D-form KLKLLLLLKLK-NH2 peptide exerts higher antimicrobial properties than its L-form counterpart via an association with bacterial cell wall components

    PubMed Central

    Manabe, Takayuki; Kawasaki, Kiyoshi

    2017-01-01

    The antimicrobial peptide KLKLLLLLKLK-NH2 was developed based on sapesin B, and synthesized using D-amino acids. Biochemical properties of the D-form and L-form KLKLLLLLKLK-NH2 peptides were compared. In order to limit the effects due to bacterial resistance to proteolysis, antimicrobial activities of the peptides were evaluated after short-term exposure to bacteria. D-form KLKLLLLLKLK-NH2 exhibited higher antimicrobial activities than L-form KLKLLLLLKLK-NH2 against bacteria, including Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli. In contrast, both the D-form and L-form of other antimicrobial peptides, including Mastoparan M and Temporin A, exhibited similar antimicrobial activities. Both the D-form KLKLLLLLKLK-NH2 and L-form KLKLLLLLKLK-NH2 peptides preferentially disrupted S. aureus-mimetic liposomes over mammalian-mimetic liposomes. Furthermore, the D-form KLKLLLLLKLK-NH2 increased the membrane permeability of S. aureus more than the L-form KLKLLLLLKLK-NH2. Thus suggesting that the enhanced antimicrobial activity of the D-form was likely due to its interaction with bacterial cell wall components. S. aureus peptidoglycan preferentially inhibited the antimicrobial activity of the D-form KLKLLLLLKLK-NH2 relative to the L-form. Furthermore, the D-form KLKLLLLLKLK-NH2 showed higher affinity for S. aureus peptidoglycan than the L-form. Taken together, these results indicate that the D-form KLKLLLLLKLK-NH2 peptide has higher antimicrobial activity than the L-form via a specific association with bacterial cell wall components, including peptidoglycan. PMID:28262682

  7. Anti-antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Ryan, Lloyd; Lamarre, Baptiste; Diu, Ting; Ravi, Jascindra; Judge, Peter J.; Temple, Adam; Carr, Matthew; Cerasoli, Eleonora; Su, Bo; Jenkinson, Howard F.; Martyna, Glenn; Crain, Jason; Watts, Anthony; Ryadnov, Maxim G.

    2013-01-01

    Antimicrobial or host defense peptides are innate immune regulators found in all multicellular organisms. Many of them fold into membrane-bound α-helices and function by causing cell wall disruption in microorganisms. Herein we probe the possibility and functional implications of antimicrobial antagonism mediated by complementary coiled-coil interactions between antimicrobial peptides and de novo designed antagonists: anti-antimicrobial peptides. Using sequences from native helical families such as cathelicidins, cecropins, and magainins we demonstrate that designed antagonists can co-fold with antimicrobial peptides into functionally inert helical oligomers. The properties and function of the resulting assemblies were studied in solution, membrane environments, and in bacterial culture by a combination of chiroptical and solid-state NMR spectroscopies, microscopy, bioassays, and molecular dynamics simulations. The findings offer a molecular rationale for anti-antimicrobial responses with potential implications for antimicrobial resistance. PMID:23737519

  8. Antimicrobial Peptides in Reptiles

    PubMed Central

    van Hoek, Monique L.

    2014-01-01

    Reptiles are among the oldest known amniotes and are highly diverse in their morphology and ecological niches. These animals have an evolutionarily ancient innate-immune system that is of great interest to scientists trying to identify new and useful antimicrobial peptides. Significant work in the last decade in the fields of biochemistry, proteomics and genomics has begun to reveal the complexity of reptilian antimicrobial peptides. Here, the current knowledge about antimicrobial peptides in reptiles is reviewed, with specific examples in each of the four orders: Testudines (turtles and tortosises), Sphenodontia (tuataras), Squamata (snakes and lizards), and Crocodilia (crocodilans). Examples are presented of the major classes of antimicrobial peptides expressed by reptiles including defensins, cathelicidins, liver-expressed peptides (hepcidin and LEAP-2), lysozyme, crotamine, and others. Some of these peptides have been identified and tested for their antibacterial or antiviral activity; others are only predicted as possible genes from genomic sequencing. Bioinformatic analysis of the reptile genomes is presented, revealing many predicted candidate antimicrobial peptides genes across this diverse class. The study of how these ancient creatures use antimicrobial peptides within their innate immune systems may reveal new understandings of our mammalian innate immune system and may also provide new and powerful antimicrobial peptides as scaffolds for potential therapeutic development. PMID:24918867

  9. Peptide Antimicrobial Agents

    PubMed Central

    Jenssen, Håvard; Hamill, Pamela; Hancock, Robert E. W.

    2006-01-01

    Antimicrobial host defense peptides are produced by all complex organisms as well as some microbes and have diverse and complex antimicrobial activities. Collectively these peptides demonstrate a broad range of antiviral and antibacterial activities and modes of action, and it is important to distinguish between direct microbicidal and indirect activities against such pathogens. The structural requirements of peptides for antiviral and antibacterial activities are evaluated in light of the diverse set of primary and secondary structures described for host defense peptides. Peptides with antifungal and antiparasitic activities are discussed in less detail, although the broad-spectrum activities of such peptides indicate that they are important host defense molecules. Knowledge regarding the relationship between peptide structure and function as well as their mechanism of action is being applied in the design of antimicrobial peptide variants as potential novel therapeutic agents. PMID:16847082

  10. Antimicrobial Peptides from Plants

    PubMed Central

    Tam, James P.; Wang, Shujing; Wong, Ka H.; Tan, Wei Liang

    2015-01-01

    Plant antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have evolved differently from AMPs from other life forms. They are generally rich in cysteine residues which form multiple disulfides. In turn, the disulfides cross-braced plant AMPs as cystine-rich peptides to confer them with extraordinary high chemical, thermal and proteolytic stability. The cystine-rich or commonly known as cysteine-rich peptides (CRPs) of plant AMPs are classified into families based on their sequence similarity, cysteine motifs that determine their distinctive disulfide bond patterns and tertiary structure fold. Cystine-rich plant AMP families include thionins, defensins, hevein-like peptides, knottin-type peptides (linear and cyclic), lipid transfer proteins, α-hairpinin and snakins family. In addition, there are AMPs which are rich in other amino acids. The ability of plant AMPs to organize into specific families with conserved structural folds that enable sequence variation of non-Cys residues encased in the same scaffold within a particular family to play multiple functions. Furthermore, the ability of plant AMPs to tolerate hypervariable sequences using a conserved scaffold provides diversity to recognize different targets by varying the sequence of the non-cysteine residues. These properties bode well for developing plant AMPs as potential therapeutics and for protection of crops through transgenic methods. This review provides an overview of the major families of plant AMPs, including their structures, functions, and putative mechanisms. PMID:26580629

  11. Pore-forming bacterial toxins and antimicrobial peptides as modulators of ADAM function.

    PubMed

    Reiss, Karina; Bhakdi, Sucharit

    2012-11-01

    Membrane-perturbating proteins and peptides are widespread agents in biology. Pore-forming bacterial toxins represent major virulence factors of pathogenic microorganisms. Membrane-damaging peptides constitute important antimicrobial effectors of innate immunity. Membrane perturbation can incur multiple responses in mammalian cells. The present discussion will focus on the interplay between membrane-damaging agents and the function of cell-bound metalloproteinases of the ADAM family. These transmembrane enzymes have emerged as the major proteinase family that mediate the proteolytic release of membrane-associated proteins, a process designated as "shedding". They liberate a large spectrum of functionally active molecules including inflammatory cytokines, growth factor receptors and cell adhesion molecules, thereby regulating such vital cellular functions as cell-cell adhesion, cell proliferation and cell migration. ADAM activation may constitute part of the cellular recovery machinery on the one hand, but likely also promotes inflammatory processes on the other. The mechanisms underlying ADAM activation and the functional consequences thereof are currently the subject of intensive research. Attention here is drawn to the possible involvement of purinergic receptors and ceramide generation in the context of ADAM activation following membrane perturbation by membrane-active agents.

  12. The Antimicrobial Peptide Gramicidin S Permeabilizes Phospholipid Bilayer Membranes Without Forming Discrete Ion Channels

    PubMed Central

    Ashrafuzzaman, Md.; Andersen, O. S.; McElhaney, R. N.

    2008-01-01

    We examined the permeabilization of lipid bilayers by the β-sheet, cyclic antimicrobial decapeptide gramicidin S (GS) in phospholipid bilayers formed either by mixtures of zwitterionic diphytanoylphosphatidylcholine and anionic diphytanoylphosphatidylglycerol or by single zwitterionic unsaturated phosphatidylcholines having various hydrocarbon chain lengths, with and without cholesterol. In the zwitterionic bilayers formed by the phosphatidylcholines, without or with cholesterol, the peptide concentrations and membrane potentials required to initiate membrane permeabilization vary little as function of bilayer thickness and cholesterol content. In all the systems tested, the GS-induced transient ion conductance events exhibit a broad range of conductances, which are little affected by the bilayer composition or thickness. In the zwitterionic phosphatidylcholine bilayers, the effect of GS does not depend on the polarity of the transmembrane potential; however, in bilayers formed from mixtures of phosphatidylcholines and anionic phospholipids, the polarity of the transmembrane potential becomes important, with the GS-induced conductance events being much more frequent when the GS-containing solution is positive relative to the GS-free solution. Overall, these results suggest that GS does not form discrete, well-defined, channel-like structures in phospholipid bilayers, but rather induces a wide variety of transient, differently sized defects which serve to compromise the bilayer barrier properties for small electrolytes. PMID:18809374

  13. The antimicrobial peptide gramicidin S permeabilizes phospholipid bilayer membranes without forming discrete ion channels.

    PubMed

    Ashrafuzzaman, Md; Andersen, O S; McElhaney, R N

    2008-12-01

    We examined the permeabilization of lipid bilayers by the beta-sheet, cyclic antimicrobial decapeptide gramicidin S (GS) in phospholipid bilayers formed either by mixtures of zwitterionic diphytanoylphosphatidylcholine and anionic diphytanoylphosphatidylglycerol or by single zwitterionic unsaturated phosphatidylcholines having various hydrocarbon chain lengths, with and without cholesterol. In the zwitterionic bilayers formed by the phosphatidylcholines, without or with cholesterol, the peptide concentrations and membrane potentials required to initiate membrane permeabilization vary little as function of bilayer thickness and cholesterol content. In all the systems tested, the GS-induced transient ion conductance events exhibit a broad range of conductances, which are little affected by the bilayer composition or thickness. In the zwitterionic phosphatidylcholine bilayers, the effect of GS does not depend on the polarity of the transmembrane potential; however, in bilayers formed from mixtures of phosphatidylcholines and anionic phospholipids, the polarity of the transmembrane potential becomes important, with the GS-induced conductance events being much more frequent when the GS-containing solution is positive relative to the GS-free solution. Overall, these results suggest that GS does not form discrete, well-defined, channel-like structures in phospholipid bilayers, but rather induces a wide variety of transient, differently sized defects which serve to compromise the bilayer barrier properties for small electrolytes.

  14. Antimicrobial Peptides from Fish

    PubMed Central

    Masso-Silva, Jorge A.; Diamond, Gill

    2014-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are found widely distributed through Nature, and participate in the innate host defense of each species. Fish are a great source of these peptides, as they express all of the major classes of AMPs, including defensins, cathelicidins, hepcidins, histone-derived peptides, and a fish-specific class of the cecropin family, called piscidins. As with other species, the fish peptides exhibit broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity, killing both fish and human pathogens. They are also immunomodulatory, and their genes are highly responsive to microbes and innate immuno-stimulatory molecules. Recent research has demonstrated that some of the unique properties of fish peptides, including their ability to act even in very high salt concentrations, make them good potential targets for development as therapeutic antimicrobials. Further, the stimulation of their gene expression by exogenous factors could be useful in preventing pathogenic microbes in aquaculture. PMID:24594555

  15. Antimicrobial peptide (Cn-AMP2) from liquid endosperm of Cocos nucifera forms amyloid-like fibrillar structure.

    PubMed

    Gour, Shalini; Kaushik, Vibha; Kumar, Vijay; Bhat, Priyanka; Yadav, Subhash C; Yadav, Jay K

    2016-04-01

    Cn-AMP2 is an antimicrobial peptide derived from liquid endosperm of coconut (Cocos nucifera). It consists of 11 amino acid residues and predicted to have high propensity for β-sheet formation that disposes this peptide to be amyloidogenic. In the present study, we have examined the amyloidogenic propensities of Cn-AMP2 in silico and then tested the predictions under in vitro conditions. The in silico study revealed that the peptide possesses high amyloidogenic propensity comparable with Aβ. Upon solubilisation and agitation in aqueous buffer, Cn-AMP2 forms visible aggregates that display bathochromic shift in the Congo red absorbance spectra, strong increase in thioflavin T fluorescence and fibrillar morphology under transmission electron microscopy. All these properties are typical of an amyloid fibril derived from various proteins/peptides including Aβ.

  16. Characterization of the aggregates formed by various bacterial lipopolysaccharides in solution and upon interaction with antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Bello, Gianluca; Eriksson, Jonny; Terry, Ann; Edwards, Katarina; Lawrence, M Jayne; Barlow, David; Harvey, Richard D

    2015-01-20

    The biophysical analysis of the aggregates formed by different chemotypes of bacterial lipopolysaccharides (LPS) before and after challenge by two different antiendotoxic antimicrobial peptides (LL37 and bovine lactoferricin) was performed in order to determine their effect on the morphology of LPS aggregates. Small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) and cryogenic transmission electron microscopy (cryoTEM) were used to examine the structures formed by both smooth and rough LPS chemotypes and the effect of the peptides, by visualization of the aggregates and analysis of the scattering data by means of both mathematical approximations and defined models. The data showed that the structure of LPS determines the morphology of the aggregates and influences the binding activity of both peptides. The morphologies of the worm-like micellar aggregates formed by the smooth LPS were relatively unaltered by the presence of the peptides due to their pre-existing high degree of positive curvature being little affected by their association with either peptide. On the other hand, the aggregates formed by the rough LPS chemotypes showed marked morphological changes from lamellar structures to ordered micellar networks, induced by the increase in positive curvature engendered upon association with the peptides. The combined use of cryoTEM and SANS proved to be a very useful tool for studying the aggregation properties of LPS in solution at biologically relevant concentrations.

  17. Multidimensional signatures in antimicrobial peptides

    PubMed Central

    Yount, Nannette Y.; Yeaman, Michael R.

    2004-01-01

    Conventional analyses distinguish between antimicrobial peptides by differences in amino acid sequence. Yet structural paradigms common to broader classes of these molecules have not been established. The current analyses examined the potential conservation of structural themes in antimicrobial peptides from evolutionarily diverse organisms. Using proteomics, an antimicrobial peptide signature was discovered to integrate stereospecific sequence patterns and a hallmark three-dimensional motif. This striking multidimensional signature is conserved among disulfide-containing antimicrobial peptides spanning biological kingdoms, and it transcends motifs previously limited to defined peptide subclasses. Experimental data validating this model enabled the identification of previously unrecognized antimicrobial activity in peptides of known identity. The multidimensional signature model provides a unifying structural theme in broad classes of antimicrobial peptides, will facilitate discovery of antimicrobial peptides as yet unknown, and offers insights into the evolution of molecular determinants in these and related host defense effector molecules. PMID:15118082

  18. The First Salamander Defensin Antimicrobial Peptide

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Ke; Rong, Mingqiang; Lai, Ren

    2013-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides have been widely identified from amphibian skins except salamanders. A novel antimicrobial peptide (CFBD) was isolated and characterized from skin secretions of the salamander, Cynops fudingensis. The cDNA encoding CFBD precursor was cloned from the skin cDNA library of C. fudingensis. The precursor was composed of three domains: signal peptide of 17 residues, mature peptide of 41 residues and intervening propeptide of 3 residues. There are six cysteines in the sequence of mature CFBD peptide, which possibly form three disulfide-bridges. CFBD showed antimicrobial activities against Staphylococcus aureus, Bacillus subtilis, Candida albicans and Escherichia coli. This peptide could be classified into family of β-defensin based on its seqeuence similarity with β-defensins from other vertebrates. Evolution analysis indicated that CFBD was close to fish β-defensin. As far as we know, CFBD is the first β-defensin antimicrobial peptide from salamanders. PMID:24386139

  19. The first salamander defensin antimicrobial peptide.

    PubMed

    Meng, Ping; Yang, Shilong; Shen, Chuanbin; Jiang, Ke; Rong, Mingqiang; Lai, Ren

    2013-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides have been widely identified from amphibian skins except salamanders. A novel antimicrobial peptide (CFBD) was isolated and characterized from skin secretions of the salamander, Cynops fudingensis. The cDNA encoding CFBD precursor was cloned from the skin cDNA library of C. fudingensis. The precursor was composed of three domains: signal peptide of 17 residues, mature peptide of 41 residues and intervening propeptide of 3 residues. There are six cysteines in the sequence of mature CFBD peptide, which possibly form three disulfide-bridges. CFBD showed antimicrobial activities against Staphylococcus aureus, Bacillus subtilis, Candida albicans and Escherichia coli. This peptide could be classified into family of β-defensin based on its sequence similarity with β-defensins from other vertebrates. Evolution analysis indicated that CFBD was close to fish β-defensin. As far as we know, CFBD is the first β-defensin antimicrobial peptide from salamanders.

  20. Channel Current Analysis for Pore-forming Properties of an Antimicrobial Peptide, Magainin 1, Using the Droplet Contact Method.

    PubMed

    Watanabe, Hirokazu; Kawano, Ryuji

    2016-01-01

    This study describes the pore-forming properties of magainin 1 in planar lipid bilayers. These bilayers were prepared by the droplet contact method, which was executed on a microfabricated device for a high-throughput study. We arrayed four droplet chambers parallelly in the single device, and the current measurements were carried out simultaneously. Using this system, we measured the channel current conductance of magainin 1. We determined the pore size and the number of assembling monomers in magainin pores in mammalian and bacterial model membranes. This system is a powerful tool for analyzing transmembrane peptides and their antimicrobial activities.

  1. Antimicrobial Peptides and Colitis

    PubMed Central

    Ho, Samantha; Pothoulakis, Charalabos; Koon, Hon Wai

    2013-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are important components of innate immunity. They are often expressed in response to colonic inflammation and infection. Over the last several years, the roles of several antimicrobial peptides have been explored. Gene expression of many AMPs (beta defensin HBD2-4 and cathelicidin) is induced in response to invasion of gut microbes into the mucosal barrier. Some AMPs are expressed in a constitutive manner (alpha defensin HD 5-6 and beta defensin HBD1), while others (defensin and bactericidal/permeability increasing protein BPI) are particularly associated with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) due to altered defensin expression or development of autoantibodies against Bactericidal/permeability increasing protein (BPI). Various AMPs have different spectrum and strength of antimicrobial effects. Some may play important roles in modulating the colitis (cathelicidin) while others (lactoferrin, hepcidin) may represent biomarkers of disease activity. The use of AMPs for therapeutic purposes is still at an early stage of development. A few natural AMPs were shown to be able to modulate colitis when delivered intravenously or intracolonically (cathelicidin, elafin and SLPI) in mouse colitis models. New AMPs (synthetic or artificial non-human peptides) are being developed and may represent new therapeutic approaches against colitis. This review discusses the latest research developments in the AMP field with emphasis in innate immunity and pathophysiology of colitis. PMID:22950497

  2. Effect of stereochemistry, chain length and sequence pattern on antimicrobial properties of short synthetic β-sheet forming peptide amphiphiles.

    PubMed

    Ong, Zhan Yuin; Cheng, Junchi; Huang, Yuan; Xu, Kaijin; Ji, Zhongkang; Fan, Weimin; Yang, Yi Yan

    2014-01-01

    In the face of mounting global antibiotics resistance, the identification and development of membrane-active antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) as an alternative class of antimicrobial agent have gained significant attention. The physical perturbation and disruption of microbial membranes by the AMPs have been proposed to be an effective means to overcome conventional mechanisms of drug resistance. Recently, we have reported the design of a series of short synthetic β-sheet folding peptide amphiphiles comprised of recurring (X1Y1X2Y2)n-NH2 sequences where X: hydrophobic amino acids, Y: cationic amino acids and n: number of repeat units. In efforts to investigate the effects of key parameters including stereochemistry, chain length and sequence pattern on antimicrobial effects, systematic d-amino acid substitutions of the lead peptides (IRIK)2-NH2 (IK8-all L) and (IRVK)3-NH2 (IK12-all L) were performed. It was found that the corresponding D-enantiomers exhibited stronger antimicrobial activities with minimal or no change in hemolytic activities, hence translating very high selectivity indices of 407.0 and >9.8 for IK8-all D and IK12-all D respectively. IK8-all D was also demonstrated to be stable to degradation by broad spectrum proteases trypsin and proteinase K. The membrane disrupting bactericidal properties of IK8-all D effectively prevented drug resistance development and inhibited the growth of various clinically isolated MRSA, VRE, Acinetobacter baumanni, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Cryptococcus. neoformans and Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Significant reduction in intracellular bacteria counts was also observed following treatment with IK8-all D in the Staphylococcus. aureus infected mouse macrophage cell line RAW264.7 (P < 0.01). These results suggest that the d-amino acids substituted β-sheet forming peptide IK8-all D with its enhanced antimicrobial activities and improved protease stability, is a promising therapeutic candidate with potential to combat

  3. Antimicrobial peptides in insects; structure and function.

    PubMed

    Bulet, P; Hetru, C; Dimarcq, J L; Hoffmann, D

    1999-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides appear to be ubiquitous and multipotent components of the innate immune defense arsenal used by both prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms. During the past 15 years a multitude of these peptides have been isolated largely from insects. In spite of great differences in size, amino acid composition and structure, most of the antimicrobial peptides from insects can be grouped into one of three categories. The largest category in number contains peptides with intramolecular disulfide bonds forming hairpin-like beta-sheets or alpha-helical-beta-sheet mixed structures. The second most important group is composed of peptides forming amphipathic alpha-helices. The third group comprises peptides with an overrepresentation in proline and/or glycine residues. In general, the insect antimicrobial peptides have a broad range of activity and are not cytotoxic. Despite a wealth of information on structural requirements for their antimicrobial activity, the mode of action of these peptides is not yet fully understood. However, some data suggest the existence of two types of mode of action: 1. through peptide-lipid interaction or 2. through receptor-mediated recognition processes. This review presents the main results obtained during the last four years in the field of antimicrobial peptides from insects with a special focus on the proline-rich and cysteine-rich peptides.

  4. Antimicrobial Properties of Amyloid Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Kagan, Bruce L.; Jang, Hyunbum; Capone, Ricardo; Arce, Fernando Teran; Ramachandran, Srinivasan; Lal, Ratnesh; Nussinov, Ruth

    2011-01-01

    More than two dozen clinical syndromes known as amyloid diseases are characterized by the buildup of extended insoluble fibrillar deposits in tissues. These amorphous Congo red staining deposits known as amyloids exhibit a characteristic green birefringence and cross-β structure. Substantial evidence implicates oligomeric intermediates of amyloids as toxic species in the pathogenesis of these chronic disease states. A growing body of data has suggested that these toxic species form ion channels in cellular membranes causing disruption of calcium homeostasis, membrane depolarization, energy drainage, and in some cases apoptosis. Amyloid peptide channels exhibit a number of common biological properties including the universal U-shape β-strand-turn-β-strand structure, irreversible and spontaneous insertion into membranes, production of large heterogeneous single-channel conductances, relatively poor ion selectivity, inhibition by Congo red, and channel blockade by zinc. Recent evidence has suggested that increased amounts of amyloids are not only toxic to its host target cells but also possess antimicrobial activity. Furthermore, at least one human antimicrobial peptide, protegrin-1, which kills microbes by a channel-forming mechanism, has been shown to possess the ability to form extended amyloid fibrils very similar to those of classic disease-forming amyloids. In this paper, we will review the reported antimicrobial properties of amyloids and the implications of these discoveries for our understanding of amyloid structure and function. PMID:22081976

  5. Plant antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Nawrot, Robert; Barylski, Jakub; Nowicki, Grzegorz; Broniarczyk, Justyna; Buchwald, Waldemar; Goździcka-Józefiak, Anna

    2014-05-01

    Plant antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are a component of barrier defense system of plants. They have been isolated from roots, seeds, flowers, stems, and leaves of a wide variety of species and have activities towards phytopathogens, as well as against bacteria pathogenic to humans. Thus, plant AMPs are considered as promising antibiotic compounds with important biotechnological applications. Plant AMPs are grouped into several families and share general features such as positive charge, the presence of disulfide bonds (which stabilize the structure), and the mechanism of action targeting outer membrane structures.

  6. Structure-function relationships of antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Hwang, P M; Vogel, H J

    1998-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides are ubiquitously produced throughout nature. Many of these relatively short peptides (6-50 residues) are lethal towards bacteria and fungi, yet they display minimal toxicity towards mammalian cells. All of the peptides are highly cationic and hydrophobic. It is widely believed that they act through nonspecific binding to biological membranes, even though the exact nature of these interactions is presently unclear. High-resolution nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) has contributed greatly to knowledge in this field, providing insight about peptide structure in aqueous solution, in organic cosolvents, and in micellar systems. Solid-state NMR can provide additional information about peptide-membrane binding. Here we review our current knowledge about the structure of antimicrobial peptides. We also discuss studies pertaining to the mechanism of action. Despite the different three-dimensional structural motifs of the various classes, they all have similar amphiphilic surfaces that are well-suited for membrane binding. Many antimicrobial peptides bind in a membrane-parallel orientation, interacting only with one face of the bilayer. This may be sufficient for antimicrobial action. At higher concentrations, peptides and phospholipids translocate to form multimeric transmembrane channels that seem to contribute to the peptide's hemolytic activity. An understanding of the key features of the secondary and tertiary structures of the antimicrobial peptides and their effects on bactericidal and hemolytic activity can aid the rational design of improved analogs for clinical use.

  7. De Novo Design of Potent Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Frecer, V.; Ho, B.; Ding, J. L.

    2004-01-01

    Lipopolysaccharide (LPS), shed by gram-negative bacteria during infection and antimicrobial therapy, may lead to lethal endotoxic shock syndrome. A rational design strategy based on the presumed mechanism of antibacterial effect was adopted to design cationic antimicrobial peptides capable of binding to LPS through tandemly repeated sequences of alternating cationic and nonpolar residues. The peptides were designed to achieve enhanced antimicrobial potency due to initial bacterial membrane binding with a reduced risk of endotoxic shock. The peptides designed displayed binding affinities to LPS and lipid A (LA) in the low micromolar range and by molecular modeling were predicted to form amphipathic β-hairpin-like structures when they bind to LPS or LA. They also exhibited strong effects against gram-negative bacteria, with MICs in the nanomolar range, and low cytotoxic and hemolytic activities at concentrations significantly exceeding their MICs. Quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) analysis of peptide sequences and their antimicrobial, cytotoxic, and hemolytic activities revealed that site-directed substitutions of residues in the hydrophobic face of the amphipathic peptides with less lipophilic residues selectively decrease the hemolytic effect without significantly affecting the antimicrobial or cytotoxic activity. On the other hand, the antimicrobial effect can be enhanced by substitutions in the polar face with more polar residues, which increase the amphipathicity of the peptide. On the basis of the QSARs, new analogs that have strong antimicrobial effects but that lack hemolytic activity can be proposed. The findings highlight the importance of peptide amphipathicity and allow a rational method that can be used to dissociate the antimicrobial and hemolytic effects of cationic peptides, which have potent antimicrobial properties, to be proposed. PMID:15328096

  8. Antimicrobial peptides: therapeutic potentials.

    PubMed

    Kang, Su-Jin; Park, Sung Jean; Mishig-Ochir, Tsogbadrakh; Lee, Bong-Jin

    2014-12-01

    The increasing appearance of multidrug-resistant pathogens has created an urgent need for suitable alternatives to current antibiotics. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), which act as defensive weapons against microbes, have received great attention because of broad-spectrum activities, unique action mechanisms and rare antibiotic-resistant variants. Despite desirable characteristics, they have shown limitations in pharmaceutical development due to toxicity, stability and manufacturing costs. Because of these drawbacks, only a few AMPs have been tested in Phase III clinical trials and no AMPs have been approved by the US FDA yet. However, these obstacles could be overcome by well-known methods such as changing physicochemical characteristics and introducing nonnatural amino acids, acetylation or amidation, as well as modern techniques like molecular targeted AMPs, liposomal formulations and drug delivery systems. Thus, the current challenge in this field is to develop therapeutic AMPs at a reasonable cost as well as to overcome the limitations.

  9. Study of the effect of antimicrobial peptide mimic, CSA-13, on an established biofilm formed by Pseudomonas aeruginosa

    PubMed Central

    Nagant, Carole; Pitts, Betsey; Stewart, Philip S; Feng, Yanshu; Savage, Paul B; Dehaye, Jean-Paul

    2013-01-01

    The formation of a Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilm, a complex structure enclosing bacterial cells in an extracellular polymeric matrix, is responsible for persistent infections in cystic fibrosis patients leading to a high rate of morbidity and mortality. The protective environment created by the tridimensional structure reduces the susceptibility of the bacteria to conventional antibiotherapy. Cationic steroid antibiotics (CSA)-13, a nonpeptide mimic of antimicrobial peptides with antibacterial activity on planktonic cultures, was evaluated for its ability to interact with sessile cells. Using confocal laser scanning microscopy, we demonstrated that the drug damaged bacteria within an established biofilm showing that penetration did not limit the activity of this antimicrobial agent against a biofilm. When biofilms were grown during exposure to shear forces and to a continuous medium flow allowing the development of robust structures with a complex architecture, CSA-13 reached the bacteria entrapped in the biofilm within 30 min. The permeabilizing effect of CSA-13 could be associated with the death of the bacteria. In static conditions, the compound did not perturb the architecture of the biofilm. This study confirms the potential of CSA-13 as a new strategy to combat persistent infections involving biofilms formed by P. aeruginosa. PMID:23436807

  10. Human Antimicrobial Peptides and Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Guangshun

    2014-01-01

    As the key components of innate immunity, human host defense antimicrobial peptides and proteins (AMPs) play a critical role in warding off invading microbial pathogens. In addition, AMPs can possess other biological functions such as apoptosis, wound healing, and immune modulation. This article provides an overview on the identification, activity, 3D structure, and mechanism of action of human AMPs selected from the antimicrobial peptide database. Over 100 such peptides have been identified from a variety of tissues and epithelial surfaces, including skin, eyes, ears, mouths, gut, immune, nervous and urinary systems. These peptides vary from 10 to 150 amino acids with a net charge between −3 and +20 and a hydrophobic content below 60%. The sequence diversity enables human AMPs to adopt various 3D structures and to attack pathogens by different mechanisms. While α-defensin HD-6 can self-assemble on the bacterial surface into nanonets to entangle bacteria, both HNP-1 and β-defensin hBD-3 are able to block cell wall biosynthesis by binding to lipid II. Lysozyme is well-characterized to cleave bacterial cell wall polysaccharides but can also kill bacteria by a non-catalytic mechanism. The two hydrophobic domains in the long amphipathic α-helix of human cathelicidin LL-37 lays the basis for binding and disrupting the curved anionic bacterial membrane surfaces by forming pores or via the carpet model. Furthermore, dermcidin may serve as ion channel by forming a long helix-bundle structure. In addition, the C-type lectin RegIIIα can initially recognize bacterial peptidoglycans followed by pore formation in the membrane. Finally, histatin 5 and GAPDH(2-32) can enter microbial cells to exert their effects. It appears that granulysin enters cells and kills intracellular pathogens with the aid of pore-forming perforin. This arsenal of human defense proteins not only keeps us healthy but also inspires the development of a new generation of personalized medicine to

  11. Antimicrobial peptides: properties and applicability.

    PubMed

    van 't Hof, W; Veerman, E C; Helmerhorst, E J; Amerongen, A V

    2001-04-01

    All organisms need protection against microorganisms, e. g. bacteria, viruses and fungi. For many years, attention has been focused on adaptive immunity as the main antimicrobial defense system. However, the adaptive immune system, with its network of humoral and cellular responses is only found in higher animals, while innate immunity is encountered in all living creatures. The turning point in the appreciation of the innate immunity was the discovery of antimicrobial peptides in the early eighties. In general these peptides act by disrupting the structural integrity of the microbial membranes. It has become clear that membrane-active peptides and proteins play a crucial role in both the innate and the adaptive immune system as antimicrobial agents. This review is focused on the functional and structural features of the naturally occurring antimicrobial peptides, and discusses their potential as therapeutics.

  12. Antimicrobial Peptides in Human Sepsis

    PubMed Central

    Martin, Lukas; van Meegern, Anne; Doemming, Sabine; Schuerholz, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Nearly 100 years ago, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) were identified as an important part of innate immunity. They exist in species from bacteria to mammals and can be isolated in body fluids and on surfaces constitutively or induced by inflammation. Defensins have anti-bacterial effects against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria as well as anti-viral and anti-yeast effects. Human neutrophil peptides (HNP) 1–3 and human beta-defensins (HBDs) 1–3 are some of the most important defensins in humans. Recent studies have demonstrated higher levels of HNP 1–3 and HBD-2 in sepsis. The bactericidal/permeability-increasing protein (BPI) attenuates local inflammatory response and decreases systemic toxicity of endotoxins. Moreover, BPI might reflect the severity of organ dysfunction in sepsis. Elevated plasma lactoferrin is detected in patients with organ failure. HNP 1–3, lactoferrin, BPI, and heparin-binding protein are increased in sepsis. Human lactoferrin peptide 1–11 (hLF 1–11) possesses antimicrobial activity and modulates inflammation. The recombinant form of lactoferrin [talactoferrin alpha (TLF)] has been shown to decrease mortality in critically ill patients. A phase II/III study with TLF in sepsis did not confirm this result. The growing number of multiresistant bacteria is an ongoing problem in sepsis therapy. Furthermore, antibiotics are known to promote the liberation of pro-inflammatory cell components and thus augment the severity of sepsis. Compared to antibiotics, AMPs kill bacteria but also neutralize pathogenic factors such as lipopolysaccharide. The obstacle to applying naturally occurring AMPs is their high nephro- and neurotoxicity. Therefore, the challenge is to develop peptides to treat septic patients effectively without causing harm. This overview focuses on natural and synthetic AMPs in human and experimental sepsis and their potential to provide significant improvements in the treatment of critically ill with severe infections

  13. Novel Formulations for Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Carmona-Ribeiro, Ana Maria; Carrasco, Letícia Dias de Melo

    2014-01-01

    Peptides in general hold much promise as a major ingredient in novel supramolecular assemblies. They may become essential in vaccine design, antimicrobial chemotherapy, cancer immunotherapy, food preservation, organs transplants, design of novel materials for dentistry, formulations against diabetes and other important strategical applications. This review discusses how novel formulations may improve the therapeutic index of antimicrobial peptides by protecting their activity and improving their bioavailability. The diversity of novel formulations using lipids, liposomes, nanoparticles, polymers, micelles, etc., within the limits of nanotechnology may also provide novel applications going beyond antimicrobial chemotherapy. PMID:25302615

  14. Novel formulations for antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Carmona-Ribeiro, Ana Maria; de Melo Carrasco, Letícia Dias

    2014-10-09

    Peptides in general hold much promise as a major ingredient in novel supramolecular assemblies. They may become essential in vaccine design, antimicrobial chemotherapy, cancer immunotherapy, food preservation, organs transplants, design of novel materials for dentistry, formulations against diabetes and other important strategical applications. This review discusses how novel formulations may improve the therapeutic index of antimicrobial peptides by protecting their activity and improving their bioavailability. The diversity of novel formulations using lipids, liposomes, nanoparticles, polymers, micelles, etc., within the limits of nanotechnology may also provide novel applications going beyond antimicrobial chemotherapy.

  15. Peptides and Peptidomimetics for Antimicrobial Drug Design

    PubMed Central

    Mojsoska, Biljana; Jenssen, Håvard

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to introduce and highlight a few classes of traditional antimicrobial peptides with a focus on structure-activity relationship studies. After first dissecting the important physiochemical properties that influence the antimicrobial and toxic properties of antimicrobial peptides, the contributions of individual amino acids with respect to the peptides antibacterial properties are presented. A brief discussion of the mechanisms of action of different antimicrobials as well as the development of bacterial resistance towards antimicrobial peptides follows. Finally, current efforts on novel design strategies and peptidomimetics are introduced to illustrate the importance of antimicrobial peptide research in the development of future antibiotics. PMID:26184232

  16. Bacterial sensing of antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Otto, Michael

    2009-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) form a crucial part of human innate host defense, especially in neutrophil phagosomes and on epithelial surfaces. Bacteria have a variety of efficient resistance mechanisms to human AMPs, such as efflux pumps, secreted proteases, and alterations of the bacterial cell surface that are aimed to minimize attraction of the typically cationic AMPs. In addition, bacteria have specific sensors that activate AMP resistance mechanisms when AMPs are present. The prototypical Gram-negative PhoP/PhoQ and the Gram-positive Aps AMP-sensing systems were first described and investigated in Salmonella typhimurium and Staphylococcus epidermidis, respectively. Both include a classical bacterial two-component sensor/regulator system, but show many structural, mechanistic, and functional differences. The PhoP/PhoQ regulon controls a variety of genes not necessarily limited to AMP resistance mechanisms, but apparently aimed to combat innate host defense on a broad scale. In contrast, the staphylococcal Aps system predominantly upregulates AMP resistance mechanisms, namely the D-alanylation of teichoic acids, inclusion of lysyl-phosphati-dylglycerol in the cytoplasmic membrane, and expression of the putative VraFG AMP efflux pump. Notably, both systems are crucial for virulence and represent possible targets for antimicrobial therapy. Copyright (c) 2009 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  17. Antimicrobial Peptides Under Clinical Trials.

    PubMed

    Greber, Katarzyna E; Dawgul, Małgorzata

    2017-01-01

    Today microbial drug resistance has become a serious problem not only within inpatient setting but also within outpatient setting. Repeated intake and unnecessary usage of antibiotics as well as the transfer of resistance genes are the most important factors that make the microorganisms resistant to conventional antibiotics. A large number of antimicrobials successfully used for prophylaxis and therapeutic purposes have now become ineffective [1, 2]. Therefore, new molecules are being studied to be used in the treatment of various diseases. Some of these molecules are structural compounds based on a combination of peptides, for example, naturally occurring endogenous peptide antibiotics and their synthetic analogues or molecules designed de novo using QSAR (quantitative structureproperty relationships)-based methods [3]. Trying to exploit numerous advantages of antimicrobial peptides such as high potency and selectivity, broad range of targets, potentially low toxicity and low accumulation in tissues, pharmaceutical industry aims to develop them as commercially available drugs and appropriate clinical trials are being conducted [4]. In this paper we define clinical trials steps and describe current status of several antimicrobial peptides under clinical development as well as briefly depict peptide drug formulation.

  18. Antimicrobial Peptides from Marine Proteobacteria

    PubMed Central

    Desriac, Florie; Jégou, Camille; Balnois, Eric; Brillet, Benjamin; Le Chevalier, Patrick; Fleury, Yannick

    2013-01-01

    After years of inadequate use and the emergence of multidrug resistant (MDR) strains, the efficiency of “classical” antibiotics has decreased significantly. New drugs to fight MDR strains are urgently needed. Bacteria hold much promise as a source of unusual bioactive metabolites. However, the potential of marine bacteria, except for Actinomycetes and Cyanobacteria, has been largely underexplored. In the past two decades, the structures of several antimicrobial compounds have been elucidated in marine Proteobacteria. Of these compounds, polyketides (PKs), synthesised by condensation of malonyl-coenzyme A and/or acetyl-coenzyme A, and non-ribosomal peptides (NRPs), obtained through the linkage of (unusual) amino acids, have recently generated particular interest. NRPs are good examples of naturally modified peptides. Here, we review and compile the data on the antimicrobial peptides isolated from marine Proteobacteria, especially NRPs. PMID:24084784

  19. Antimicrobial peptides from marine proteobacteria.

    PubMed

    Desriac, Florie; Jégou, Camille; Balnois, Eric; Brillet, Benjamin; Le Chevalier, Patrick; Fleury, Yannick

    2013-09-30

    After years of inadequate use and the emergence of multidrug resistant (MDR) strains, the efficiency of "classical" antibiotics has decreased significantly. New drugs to fight MDR strains are urgently needed. Bacteria hold much promise as a source of unusual bioactive metabolites. However, the potential of marine bacteria, except for Actinomycetes and Cyanobacteria, has been largely underexplored. In the past two decades, the structures of several antimicrobial compounds have been elucidated in marine Proteobacteria. Of these compounds, polyketides (PKs), synthesised by condensation of malonyl-coenzyme A and/or acetyl-coenzyme A, and non-ribosomal peptides (NRPs), obtained through the linkage of (unusual) amino acids, have recently generated particular interest. NRPs are good examples of naturally modified peptides. Here, we review and compile the data on the antimicrobial peptides isolated from marine Proteobacteria, especially NRPs.

  20. Research in practice: Antimicrobial peptides of the skin.

    PubMed

    Gläser, Regine

    2011-09-01

    Antimicrobial peptides represent evolutionary ancient molecules whose importance became evident within the last years. These highly effective peptides protect the skin and other epithelia against infection and form a fast acting "chemical barrier" also regulating the normal flora of the skin and mucosa. In the Department of Dermatology, University Hospital Kiel, various antimicrobial peptides have been discovered, characterized and investigated in healthy persons as well as in different skin diseases. Everyday clinical observations formed the background for several interesting hypotheses and findings.

  1. Biologically active and antimicrobial peptides from plants.

    PubMed

    Salas, Carlos E; Badillo-Corona, Jesus A; Ramírez-Sotelo, Guadalupe; Oliver-Salvador, Carmen

    2015-01-01

    Bioactive peptides are part of an innate response elicited by most living forms. In plants, they are produced ubiquitously in roots, seeds, flowers, stems, and leaves, highlighting their physiological importance. While most of the bioactive peptides produced in plants possess microbicide properties, there is evidence that they are also involved in cellular signaling. Structurally, there is an overall similarity when comparing them with those derived from animal or insect sources. The biological action of bioactive peptides initiates with the binding to the target membrane followed in most cases by membrane permeabilization and rupture. Here we present an overview of what is currently known about bioactive peptides from plants, focusing on their antimicrobial activity and their role in the plant signaling network and offering perspectives on their potential application.

  2. Biologically Active and Antimicrobial Peptides from Plants

    PubMed Central

    Salas, Carlos E.; Badillo-Corona, Jesus A.; Ramírez-Sotelo, Guadalupe; Oliver-Salvador, Carmen

    2015-01-01

    Bioactive peptides are part of an innate response elicited by most living forms. In plants, they are produced ubiquitously in roots, seeds, flowers, stems, and leaves, highlighting their physiological importance. While most of the bioactive peptides produced in plants possess microbicide properties, there is evidence that they are also involved in cellular signaling. Structurally, there is an overall similarity when comparing them with those derived from animal or insect sources. The biological action of bioactive peptides initiates with the binding to the target membrane followed in most cases by membrane permeabilization and rupture. Here we present an overview of what is currently known about bioactive peptides from plants, focusing on their antimicrobial activity and their role in the plant signaling network and offering perspectives on their potential application. PMID:25815307

  3. Insect inducible antimicrobial peptides and their applications.

    PubMed

    Ezzati-Tabrizi, Reyhaneh; Farrokhi, Naser; Talaei-Hassanloui, Reza; Alavi, Seyed Mehdi; Hosseininaveh, Vahid

    2013-12-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are found as important components of the innate immune system (host defense) of all invertebrates. These peptides can be constitutively expressed or induced in response to microbial infections. Indeed, they vary in their amino acid sequences, potency and antimicrobial activity spectra. The smaller AMPs act greatly by disrupting the structure or function of microbial cell membranes. Here, the insect innate immune system with emphasis on inducible antimicrobial peptide properties against microbial invaders has been discussed.

  4. Antimicrobial peptides: clinical relevance and therapeutic implications.

    PubMed

    Pinheiro da Silva, Fabiano; Machado, Marcel Cerqueira César

    2012-08-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are molecules that provide protection against environmental pathogens, acting against a large number of microorganisms, including bacteria, fungi, yeast, virus and others. Two major groups of antimicrobial peptides are found in humans: cathelicidins and defensins. Recently, several studies have furnished information that besides their role in infection diseases, antimicrobial peptides play a role in diseases as diverse as inflammatory disorders, autoimmunity and cancer. Here, we discuss the role of antimicrobial peptides and vitamin D have in such complex diseases and propose their use should be more explored in the diagnosis and treatment of such conditions.

  5. Membrane disruption mechanism of antimicrobial peptides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Ka Yee

    2012-04-01

    Largely distributed among living organisms, antimicrobial peptides are a class of small (<100 residues) host defense peptides that induce selective membrane lytic activity against microbial pathogens. The permeabilizing behavior of these diverse peptides has been commonly attributed to the formation of pores, and such pore formation has been categorized as barrel-stave, toroidal, or carpet-like. With the continuing discovery of new peptide species, many are uncharacterized and the exact mechanism is unknown. Through the use of atomic force microscopy, the disruption of supported lipid bilayer patches by protegrin-1 is concentration-dependent. The intercalation of antimicrobial peptide into the bilayer results in structures beyond that of pore formation, but with the formation of worm-like micelles at high peptide concentration. Our results suggest that antimicrobial peptide acts to lower the interfacial energy of the bilayer in a way similar to detergents. Antimicrobial peptides with structural differences, magainin-1 and aurein 1.1, exhibit a mechanistic commonality.

  6. Antimicrobial Peptides: Versatile Biological Properties

    PubMed Central

    Pushpanathan, Muthuirulan; Rajendhran, Jeyaprakash

    2013-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides are diverse group of biologically active molecules with multidimensional properties. In recent past, a wide variety of AMPs with diverse structures have been reported from different sources such as plants, animals, mammals, and microorganisms. The presence of unusual amino acids and structural motifs in AMPs confers unique structural properties to the peptide that attribute for their specific mode of action. The ability of these active AMPs to act as multifunctional effector molecules such as signalling molecule, immune modulators, mitogen, antitumor, and contraceptive agent makes it an interesting candidate to study every aspect of their structural and biological properties for prophylactic and therapeutic applications. In addition, easy cloning and recombinant expression of AMPs in heterologous plant host systems provided a pipeline for production of disease resistant transgenic plants. Besides these properties, AMPs were also used as drug delivery vectors to deliver cell impermeable drugs to cell interior. The present review focuses on the diversity and broad spectrum antimicrobial activity of AMPs along with its multidimensional properties that could be exploited for the application of these bioactive peptides as a potential and promising drug candidate in pharmaceutical industries. PMID:23935642

  7. Antimicrobial peptides interact with peptidoglycan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neelay, Om P.; Peterson, Christian A.; Snavely, Mary E.; Brown, Taylor C.; TecleMariam, Ariam F.; Campbell, Jennifer A.; Blake, Allison M.; Schneider, Sydney C.; Cremeens, Matthew E.

    2017-10-01

    Traditional therapeutics are losing effectiveness as bacterial resistance increases, and antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) can serve as an alternative source for antimicrobial agents. Their mode of action is commonly hypothesized to involve pore formation in the lipid membrane, thereby leading to cell death. However, bacterial cell walls are much more complex than just the lipid membrane. A large portion of the wall is comprised of peptidoglycan, yet we did not find any report of AMP-peptidoglycan interactions. Consequently, this work evaluated AMP-peptidoglycan and AMP-phospholipid (multilamellar vesicles) interactions through tryptophan fluorescence. Given that peptidoglycan is insoluble and vesicles are large particles, we took advantage of the unique properties of Trp-fluorescence to use one technique for two very different systems. Interestingly, melittin and cecropin A interacted with peptidoglycan to a degree similar to vancomycin, a positive control. Whether these AMP-peptidoglycan interactions relate to a killing mode of action requires further study.

  8. The Potential of Antimicrobial Peptides as Biocides

    PubMed Central

    Laverty, Garry; Gorman, Sean P.; Gilmore, Brendan F.

    2011-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides constitute a diverse class of naturally occurring antimicrobial molecules which have activity against a wide range of pathogenic microorganisms. Antimicrobial peptides are exciting leads in the development of novel biocidal agents at a time when classical antibiotics are under intense pressure from emerging resistance, and the global industry in antibiotic research and development stagnates. This review will examine the potential of antimicrobial peptides, both natural and synthetic, as novel biocidal agents in the battle against multi-drug resistant pathogen infections. PMID:22072905

  9. Antimicrobial peptides: an alternative for innovative medicines?

    PubMed

    da Costa, João Pinto; Cova, Marta; Ferreira, Rita; Vitorino, Rui

    2015-03-01

    Antimicrobial peptides are small molecules with activity against bacteria, yeasts, fungi, viruses, bacteria, and even tumor cells that make these molecules attractive as therapeutic agents. Due to the alarming increase of antimicrobial resistance, interest in alternative antimicrobial agents has led to the exploitation of antimicrobial peptides, both synthetic and from natural sources. Thus, many peptide-based drugs are currently commercially available for the treatment of numerous ailments, such as hepatitis C, myeloma, skin infections, and diabetes. Initial barriers are being increasingly overcome with the development of cost-effective, more stable peptides. Herein, we review the available strategies for their synthesis, bioinformatics tools for the rational design of antimicrobial peptides with enhanced therapeutic indices, hurdles and shortcomings limiting the large-scale production of AMPs, as well as the challenges that the pharmaceutical industry faces on their use as therapeutic agents.

  10. Antimicrobial peptides of multicellular organisms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zasloff, Michael

    2002-01-01

    Multicellular organisms live, by and large, harmoniously with microbes. The cornea of the eye of an animal is almost always free of signs of infection. The insect flourishes without lymphocytes or antibodies. A plant seed germinates successfully in the midst of soil microbes. How is this accomplished? Both animals and plants possess potent, broad-spectrum antimicrobial peptides, which they use to fend off a wide range of microbes, including bacteria, fungi, viruses and protozoa. What sorts of molecules are they? How are they employed by animals in their defence? As our need for new antibiotics becomes more pressing, could we design anti-infective drugs based on the design principles these molecules teach us?

  11. Antimicrobial peptide action on parasites.

    PubMed

    Torrent, Marc; Pulido, David; Rivas, Luis; Andreu, David

    2012-08-01

    Diseases caused by protozoan parasites can pose a severe thread to human health and are behind some serious neglected tropical diseases like malaria and leishmaniasis. Though several different drugs have been developed in order to eradicate these diseases, a successful candidate has not yet been discovered. Among the most active compounds tested, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are particularly appealing because of their wide spectrum of action. AMPs have been described to perturb protozoan homeostasis by disrupting the cellular membranes but also by interfering with key processes in the parasite metabolism. In this review we describe the diverse mechanisms of action of AMPs on protozoan targets and how they can be exploited to treat diseases. Moreover, we describe with detail the antimicrobial action of AMPs on two major parasitical infections: leishmaniasis and malaria. All the features reviewed here show that AMPs are promising drugs to target protozoan parasites and that further understanding of the mechanism of action of these compounds will lead to improved drugs that could be worth to test in a clinical phase.

  12. Antimicrobial peptides as potential new antifungals.

    PubMed

    Müller, F M; Lyman, C A; Walsh, T J

    1999-01-01

    Ribosomally synthesized natural antimicrobial peptides (AP) and their synthetic derivatives are small, cationic, amphipathic molecules of 12-50 amino acids with unusually broad activity spectra. These peptides kill microorganisms by a common mechanism, which involves binding to the lipid bilayer of biological membranes, forming pores, and ultimately followed by cell lysis. Several AP from mammals, amphibians, insects, plants and their synthetic derivatives demonstrate promising in vitro activity against various pathogenic fungi including azole-resistant Candida albicans strains. In addition to their antimicrobial activity, some AP such as lactoferrin, interact with a variety of host cells and can increase the activity of natural killer and lymphokine activated killer cells. Pretreatment of polymorphonuclear neutrophil leukocytes (PMN) or monocytes with these AP also may upregulate superoxide release. AP as potential new antifungal agents offer some advantages, such as rapid killing of pathogenic fungi and the difficulty to raise mutants resistant to these peptides. AP are limited by their nonselective toxicity, stability, immunogenicity and their costs of production. Potential clinical applications of AP in the future have to be further explored in preclinical and clinical studies to assess their impact as a new class of antifungals.

  13. Novel Antimicrobial Peptides Derived from Flatfish Genes†

    PubMed Central

    Patrzykat, Aleksander; Gallant, Jeffrey W.; Seo, Jung-Kil; Pytyck, Jennifer; Douglas, Susan E.

    2003-01-01

    We report on the identification of active novel antimicrobials determined by screening both the genomic information and the mRNA transcripts from a number of different flatfish for sequences encoding antimicrobial peptides, predicting the sequences of active peptides from the genetic information, producing the predicted peptides chemically, and testing them for their activities. We amplified 35 sequences from various species of flatfish using primers whose sequences are based on conserved flanking regions of a known antimicrobial peptide from winter flounder, pleurocidin. We analyzed the sequences of the amplified products and predicted which sequences were likely to encode functional antimicrobial peptides on the basis of charge, hydrophobicity, relation to flanking sequences, and similarity to known active peptides. Twenty peptides were then produced synthetically and tested for their activities against gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria and the yeast Candida albicans. The most active peptide (with the carboxy-terminus amidated sequence GWRTLLKKAEVKTVGKLALKHYL, derived from American plaice) showed inhibitory activity over a concentration range of 1 to 8 μg/ml against a test panel of pathogens, including the intrinsically antibiotic-resistant organism Pseudomonas aeruginosa, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, and C. albicans. The methods described here will be useful for the identification of novel peptides with good antimicrobial activities. PMID:12878506

  14. Short Antimicrobial Peptides and Peptide Scaffolds as Promising Antibacterial Agents.

    PubMed

    Domalaon, Ronald; Zhanel, George G; Schweizer, Frank

    2016-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides have recently garnered significant attention as an emerging source of potential antibiotics, due to the swift emergence of multidrug-resistant bacteria and a dwindling antibiotic pipeline. The vast majority of antimicrobial peptides are long, comprised of more than 10 amino acids, resulting in significant production costs for their synthesis while simultaneously displaying metabolic instability and relatively poor pharmacological profiles. To counter these problems, efforts have been shifted to shorter molecules and the development of new peptidomimetic approaches. In this paper, we review promising short, naturally-isolated or synthetic, antimicrobial peptides, along with their mimics, and discuss their merits as potential antibacterial agents.

  15. (Lipo)polysaccharide interactions of antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Schmidtchen, Artur; Malmsten, Martin

    2015-07-01

    Due to rapidly increasing resistance development against conventional antibiotics, as well as problems associated with diseases either triggered or deteriorated by infection, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory peptides have attracted considerable interest during the last few years. While there is an emerging understanding of the direct antimicrobial function of such peptides through bacterial membrane destabilization, the mechanisms of their anti-inflammatory function are less clear. We here summarize some recent results obtained from our own research on anti-inflammatory peptides, with focus on peptide-(lipo)polysaccharide interactions.

  16. Novel histone-derived antimicrobial peptides use different antimicrobial mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Pavia, Kathryn E; Spinella, Sara A; Elmore, Donald E

    2012-03-01

    The increase in multidrug resistant bacteria has sparked an interest in the development of novel antibiotics. Antimicrobial peptides that operate by crossing the cell membrane may also have the potential to deliver drugs to intracellular targets. Buforin 2 (BF2) is an antimicrobial peptide that shares sequence identity with a fragment of histone subunit H2A and whose bactericidal mechanism depends on membrane translocation and DNA binding. Previously, novel histone-derived antimicrobial peptides (HDAPs) were designed based on properties of BF2, and DesHDAP1 and DesHDAP3 showed significant antibacterial activity. In this study, their DNA binding, permeabilization, and translocation abilities were assessed independently and compared to antibacterial activity to determine whether they share a mechanism with BF2. To investigate the importance of proline in determining the peptides' mechanisms of action, proline to alanine mutants of the novel peptides were generated. DesHDAP1, which shows significant similarities to BF2 in terms of secondary structure, translocates effectively across lipid vesicle and bacterial membranes, while the DesHDAP1 proline mutant shows reduced translocation abilities and antimicrobial potency. In contrast, both DesHDAP3 and its proline mutant translocate poorly, though the DesHDAP3 proline mutant is more potent. Our findings suggest that a proline hinge can promote membrane translocation in some peptides, but that the extent of its effect on permeabilization depends on the peptide's amphipathic properties. Our results also highlight the different antimicrobial mechanisms exhibited by histone-derived peptides and suggest that histones may serve as a source of novel antimicrobial peptides with varied properties.

  17. [Antimicrobial peptide in dentisty. Literature review].

    PubMed

    Sato, F Simain; Rompen, E; Heinen, E

    2009-12-01

    The use of antimicrobial substances has contributed to the development of multiple antimicrobial resistances (1), challenging the pharmaceutical industry to develop with new, innovative, and effective molecules. Discovered around 1980, molecules called natural antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) appear to hold great potential for the treatment of infections. These cationic peptides are able to stop the bacterial development and to control infections. The purpose of this review is to help improve the understanding of the way AMPs operate in the context of the development of new cures against viruses, bacteria, and mushrooms found in the human body in general and in the oral cavity in particular.

  18. Antimicrobial preservative effectiveness of natural peptide antibiotics.

    PubMed

    Kamysz, Wojciech; Turecka, Katarzyna

    2005-01-01

    The constantly growing resistance of microbes to drugs and other substances which fight microbial infections leads to search for new antimicrobial substances. Among substances which attract the scientists attention are antimicrobial peptides. Such compounds are quite common in nature and belong to the most important elements of the innate immune system of all living organisms. Numerous antimicrobial peptides have been isolated from insects, amphibians, mammals, plants and bacterial species. In this study we investigated the in vitro activity of two animal peptides, citropin 1.1 and protegrin 1 alone and in combination against microbial strains proposed for the evaluation of preservatives: Escherichia coli ATCC 8739, Staphylococcus aureus ATCC 6538, Pseudomonas aeruginosa ATCC 9027, Candida albicans ATCC 10231, and Aspergillus niger ATCC 16404. The results of the antimicrobial preservative effectiveness were compared to the values received for benzalkonium chloride, popular preservative of medicines and cosmetics.

  19. Antimicrobial activity of human islet amyloid polypeptides: an insight into amyloid peptides' connection with antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Wang, Lan; Liu, Qian; Chen, Jin-Chun; Cui, Yi-Xian; Zhou, Bing; Chen, Yong-Xiang; Zhao, Yu-Fen; Li, Yan-Mei

    2012-07-01

    Human islet amyloid polypeptide (hIAPP) shows an antimicrobial activity towards two types of clinically relevant bacteria. The potency of hIAPP varies with its aggregation states. Circular dichroism was employed to determine the interaction between hIAPP and bacteria lipid membrane mimic. The antimicrobial activity of each aggregate species is associated with their ability to induce membrane disruption. Our findings provide new evidence revealing the antimicrobial activity of amyloid peptide, which suggest a possible connection between amyloid peptides and antimicrobial peptides.

  20. Antimicrobial Cyclic Peptides for Plant Disease Control

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Dong Wan; Kim, Beom Seok

    2015-01-01

    Antimicrobial cyclic peptides derived from microbes bind stably with target sites, have a tolerance to hydrolysis by proteases, and a favorable degradability under field conditions, which make them an attractive proposition for use as agricultural fungicides. Antimicrobial cyclic peptides are classified according to the types of bonds within the ring structure; homodetic, heterodetic, and complex cyclic peptides, which in turn reflect diverse physicochemical features. Most antimicrobial cyclic peptides affect the integrity of the cell envelope. This is achieved through direct interaction with the cell membrane or disturbance of the cell wall and membrane component biosynthesis such as chitin, glucan, and sphingolipid. These are specific and selective targets providing reliable activity and safety for non-target organisms. Synthetic cyclic peptides produced through combinatorial chemistry offer an alternative approach to develop antimicrobials for agricultural uses. Those synthesized so far have been studied for antibacterial activity, however, the recent advancements in powerful technologies now promise to provide novel antimicrobial cyclic peptides that are yet to be discovered from natural resources. PMID:25774105

  1. Antimicrobial Peptides Targeting Gram-Positive Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Malanovic, Nermina; Lohner, Karl

    2016-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have remarkably different structures as well as biological activity profiles, whereupon most of these peptides are supposed to kill bacteria via membrane damage. In order to understand their molecular mechanism and target cell specificity for Gram-positive bacteria, it is essential to consider the architecture of their cell envelopes. Before AMPs can interact with the cytoplasmic membrane of Gram-positive bacteria, they have to traverse the cell wall composed of wall- and lipoteichoic acids and peptidoglycan. While interaction of AMPs with peptidoglycan might rather facilitate penetration, interaction with anionic teichoic acids may act as either a trap for AMPs or a ladder for a route to the cytoplasmic membrane. Interaction with the cytoplasmic membrane frequently leads to lipid segregation affecting membrane domain organization, which affects membrane permeability, inhibits cell division processes or leads to delocalization of essential peripheral membrane proteins. Further, precursors of cell wall components, especially the highly conserved lipid II, are directly targeted by AMPs. Thereby, the peptides do not inhibit peptidoglycan synthesis via binding to proteins like common antibiotics, but form a complex with the precursor molecule, which in addition can promote pore formation and membrane disruption. Thus, the multifaceted mode of actions will make AMPs superior to antibiotics that act only on one specific target. PMID:27657092

  2. Insect Antimicrobial Peptides and Their Applications

    PubMed Central

    Yi, Hui-Yu; Chowdhury, Munmun; Huang, Ya-Dong; Yu, Xiao-Qiang

    2014-01-01

    Insects are one of the major sources of antimicrobial peptides/proteins (AMPs). Since observation of antimicrobial activity in the hemolymph of pupae from the giant silk moths Samia Cynthia and Hyalophora cecropia in 1974 and purification of first insect AMP (cecropin) from H. cecropia pupae in 1980, over 150 insect AMPs have been purified or identified. Most insect AMPs are small and cationic, and they show activities against bacteria and/or fungi, as well as some parasites and viruses. Insect AMPs can be classified into four families based on their structures or unique sequences: the α-helical peptides (cecropin and moricin), cysteine-rich peptides (insect defensin and drosomycin), proline-rich peptides (apidaecin, drosocin and lebocin), and glycine-rich peptides/proteins (attacin and gloverin). Among insect AMPs, defensins, cecropins, proline-rich peptides and attacins are common, while gloverins and moricins have been identified only in Lepidoptera. Most active AMPs are small peptides of 20–50 residues, which are generated from larger inactive precursor proteins or pro-proteins, but gloverins (~14 kDa) and attacins (~20 kDa) are large antimicrobial proteins. In this mini-review, we will discuss current knowledge and recent progress in several classes of insect AMPs, including insect defensins, cecropins, attacins, lebocins and other proline-rich peptides, gloverins, and moricins, with a focus on structural-functional relationships and their potential applications. PMID:24811407

  3. Two novel antimicrobial peptides from centipede venoms.

    PubMed

    Peng, Kanfu; Kong, Yi; Zhai, Lei; Wu, Xiongfei; Jia, Peng; Liu, Jingze; Yu, Haining

    2010-01-01

    Centipede venoms are complex mixtures of biochemically and pharmacologically active components such as peptides and proteins. Very few are known about their pharmacological actions. The present work reports the structural and functional characterization of two antimicrobial peptides (scolopin 1 and -2) identified from centipede venoms of Scolopendra subspinipes mutilans by Sephadex gel filtration and reverse-phase high-performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC). The amino acid sequences of scolopin 1 and -2 were FLPKMSTKLRVPYRRGTKDYH and GILKKFMLHRGTKVYKMRTLSKRSH determined by Edman degradation and matrix assisted laser desorption ionization time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS). Both scolopin 1 and -2 showed strong antimicrobial activities against tested microorganisms including Gram-positive/negative bacteria and fungi. They also showed moderate hemolytic activity against both human and rabbit red cells. This is the first report of antimicrobial peptides from centipedes.

  4. Toxins and antimicrobial peptides: interactions with membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schlamadinger, Diana E.; Gable, Jonathan E.; Kim, Judy E.

    2009-08-01

    The innate immunity to pathogenic invasion of organisms in the plant and animal kingdoms relies upon cationic antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) as the first line of defense. In addition to these natural peptide antibiotics, similar cationic peptides, such as the bee venom toxin melittin, act as nonspecific toxins. Molecular details of AMP and peptide toxin action are not known, but the universal function of these peptides to disrupt cell membranes of pathogenic bacteria (AMPs) or a diverse set of eukaryotes and prokaryotes (melittin) is widely accepted. Here, we have utilized spectroscopic techniques to elucidate peptide-membrane interactions of alpha-helical human and mouse AMPs of the cathelicidin family as well as the peptide toxin melittin. The activity of these natural peptides and their engineered analogs was studied on eukaryotic and prokaryotic membrane mimics consisting of <200-nm bilayer vesicles composed of anionic and neutral lipids as well as cholesterol. Vesicle disruption, or peptide potency, was monitored with a sensitive fluorescence leakage assay. Detailed molecular information on peptidemembrane interactions and peptide structure was further gained through vibrational spectroscopy combined with circular dichroism. Finally, steady-state fluorescence experiments yielded insight into the local environment of native or engineered tryptophan residues in melittin and human cathelicidin embedded in bilayer vesicles. Collectively, our results provide clues to the functional structures of the engineered and toxic peptides and may impact the design of synthetic antibiotic peptides that can be used against the growing number of antibiotic-resistant pathogens.

  5. The dynamic action mechanism of small cationic antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Lopez Cascales, J J; Garro, A; Porasso, R D; Enriz, R D

    2014-10-21

    Antimicrobial peptides form part of the immune system as protection against the action of external pathogens. The differences that exist between mammalian and microbial cell membrane architectures are key aspects of the ability of these peptides to discriminate between pathogens and host cells. Given that the pathogen membrane is the non-specific target of these cationic peptides, different molecular mechanisms have been suggested to describe the rules that permit them to distinguish between pathogens and mammalian cells. In this context, and setting aside the old fashion idea that cationic peptides act through one mechanism alone, this work will provide insight into the molecular action mechanism of small antimicrobial peptides, based on molecular dynamics simulations of phospholipid bilayers that mimic different cell membrane architectures. After measuring different properties of these lipid bilayers, in the absence and presence of peptides, a four-step action mechanism was suggested on the basis of the formation of phospholipid rafts induced by the presence of these cationic peptides. Thus, this work shows how differences in the bending modulus (k(b)) of these lipid rafts and differences in the free energy profiles (ΔG(z)) associated with the insertion of these peptides into these lipid rafts are key aspects for explaining the action mechanism of these cationic peptides at the molecular level.

  6. Antimicrobial Peptides for Use in Biosensing Applications

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2004-12-01

    S., Bevins, C. L., Brasseur, M. M., Tomassini, N., Turner, K., Eck, H. and Zasloff, M., 1991: Antimicrobial Peptides in the Stomach of Xenopus ... laevis , The Journal of Biological Chemistry, 266, 19851-19857. Steiner, H., Andreu, D. and Merrifield, R. B., 1988: Binding and action of cecropin

  7. Bacterial strategies of resistance to antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Joo, Hwang-Soo; Fu, Chih-Iung; Otto, Michael

    2016-05-26

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are a key component of the host's innate immune system, targeting invasive and colonizing bacteria. For successful survival and colonization of the host, bacteria have a series of mechanisms to interfere with AMP activity, and AMP resistance is intimately connected with the virulence potential of bacterial pathogens. In particular, because AMPs are considered as potential novel antimicrobial drugs, it is vital to understand bacterial AMP resistance mechanisms. This review gives a comparative overview of Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacterial strategies of resistance to various AMPs, such as repulsion or sequestration by bacterial surface structures, alteration of membrane charge or fluidity, degradation and removal by efflux pumps.This article is part of the themed issue 'Evolutionary ecology of arthropod antimicrobial peptides'.

  8. Original involvement of antimicrobial peptides in mussel innate immunity.

    PubMed

    Mitta, G; Vandenbulcke, F; Roch, P

    2000-12-15

    Recently, the existence and extended diversity of antimicrobial peptides has been revealed in two mussel species. These molecules are classified into four groups according to common features of their primary structure: defensins, mytilins, myticins and mytimycin. In Mytilus galloprovincialis, gene structure reveals synthesis as precursors in circulating hemocytes. Synthesised even in absence of challenge, the precursors mature and the peptides are stored in granules as active forms. The different peptides are engaged in the destruction of bacteria inside phagocytes, before being released into hemolymph to participate in systemic responses. Such involvement in anti-infectious responses is unique, and apparently more related to those of mammalian phagocytes than to those of insects.

  9. Biofilm Induced Tolerance towards Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Folkesson, Anders; Haagensen, Janus A. J.; Zampaloni, Claudia; Sternberg, Claus; Molin, Søren

    2008-01-01

    Increased tolerance to antimicrobial agents is thought to be an important feature of microbes growing in biofilms. We address the question of how biofilm organization affects antibiotic susceptibility. We established Escherichia coli biofilms with differential structural organization due to the presence of IncF plasmids expressing altered forms of the transfer pili in two different biofilm model systems. The mature biofilms were subsequently treated with two antibiotics with different molecular targets, the peptide antibiotic colistin and the fluoroquinolone ciprofloxacin. The dynamics of microbial killing were monitored by viable count determination, and confocal laser microscopy. Strains forming structurally organized biofilms show an increased bacterial survival when challenged with colistin, compared to strains forming unstructured biofilms. The increased survival is due to genetically regulated tolerant subpopulation formation and not caused by a general biofilm property. No significant difference in survival was detected when the strains were challenged with ciprofloxacin. Our data show that biofilm formation confers increased colistin tolerance to cells within the biofilm structure, but the protection is conditional being dependent on the structural organization of the biofilm, and the induction of specific tolerance mechanisms. PMID:18382672

  10. Biofilm induced tolerance towards antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Folkesson, Anders; Haagensen, Janus A J; Zampaloni, Claudia; Sternberg, Claus; Molin, Søren

    2008-04-02

    Increased tolerance to antimicrobial agents is thought to be an important feature of microbes growing in biofilms. We address the question of how biofilm organization affects antibiotic susceptibility. We established Escherichia coli biofilms with differential structural organization due to the presence of IncF plasmids expressing altered forms of the transfer pili in two different biofilm model systems. The mature biofilms were subsequently treated with two antibiotics with different molecular targets, the peptide antibiotic colistin and the fluoroquinolone ciprofloxacin. The dynamics of microbial killing were monitored by viable count determination, and confocal laser microscopy. Strains forming structurally organized biofilms show an increased bacterial survival when challenged with colistin, compared to strains forming unstructured biofilms. The increased survival is due to genetically regulated tolerant subpopulation formation and not caused by a general biofilm property. No significant difference in survival was detected when the strains were challenged with ciprofloxacin. Our data show that biofilm formation confers increased colistin tolerance to cells within the biofilm structure, but the protection is conditional being dependent on the structural organization of the biofilm, and the induction of specific tolerance mechanisms.

  11. Design and Application of Antimicrobial Peptide Conjugates

    PubMed Central

    Reinhardt, Andre; Neundorf, Ines

    2016-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are an interesting class of antibiotics characterized by their unique antibiotic activity and lower propensity for developing resistance compared to common antibiotics. They belong to the class of membrane-active peptides and usually act selectively against bacteria, fungi and protozoans. AMPs, but also peptide conjugates containing AMPs, have come more and more into the focus of research during the last few years. Within this article, recent work on AMP conjugates is reviewed. Different aspects will be highlighted as a combination of AMPs with antibiotics or organometallic compounds aiming to increase antibacterial activity or target selectivity, conjugation with photosensitizers for improving photodynamic therapy (PDT) or the attachment to particles, to name only a few. Owing to the enormous resonance of antimicrobial conjugates in the literature so far, this research topic seems to be very attractive to different scientific fields, like medicine, biology, biochemistry or chemistry. PMID:27187357

  12. Peptide consensus sequence determination for the enhancement of the antimicrobial activity and selectivity of antimicrobial peptides

    PubMed Central

    Almaaytah, Ammar; Ajingi, Ya’u; Abualhaijaa, Ahmad; Tarazi, Shadi; Alshar’i, Nizar; Al-Balas, Qosay

    2017-01-01

    The rise of multidrug-resistant bacteria is causing a serious threat to the world’s human population. Recent reports have identified bacterial strains displaying pan drug resistance against antibiotics and generating fears among medical health specialists that humanity is on the dawn of entering a post-antibiotics era. Global research is currently focused on expanding the lifetime of current antibiotics and the development of new antimicrobial agents to tackle the problem of antimicrobial resistance. In the present study, we designed a novel consensus peptide named “Pepcon” through peptide consensus sequence determination among members of a highly homologous group of scorpion antimicrobial peptides. Members of this group were found to possess moderate antimicrobial activity with significant toxicity against mammalian cells. The aim of our design method was to generate a novel peptide with an enhanced antimicrobial potency and selectivity against microbial rather than mammalian cells. The results of our study revealed that the consensus peptide displayed potent antibacterial activities against a broad range of Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. Our membrane permeation studies displayed that the peptide efficiently induced membrane damage and consequently led to cell death through the process of cell lysis. The microbial DNA binding assay of the peptide was found to be very weak suggesting that the peptide is not targeting the microbial DNA. Pepcon induced minimal cytotoxicity at the antimicrobial concentrations as the hemolytic activity was found to be zero at the minimal inhibitory concentrations (MICs). The results of our study demonstrate that the consensus peptide design strategy is efficient in generating peptides. PMID:28096686

  13. Peptide consensus sequence determination for the enhancement of the antimicrobial activity and selectivity of antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Almaaytah, Ammar; Ajingi, Ya'u; Abualhaijaa, Ahmad; Tarazi, Shadi; Alshar'i, Nizar; Al-Balas, Qosay

    2017-01-01

    The rise of multidrug-resistant bacteria is causing a serious threat to the world's human population. Recent reports have identified bacterial strains displaying pan drug resistance against antibiotics and generating fears among medical health specialists that humanity is on the dawn of entering a post-antibiotics era. Global research is currently focused on expanding the lifetime of current antibiotics and the development of new antimicrobial agents to tackle the problem of antimicrobial resistance. In the present study, we designed a novel consensus peptide named "Pepcon" through peptide consensus sequence determination among members of a highly homologous group of scorpion antimicrobial peptides. Members of this group were found to possess moderate antimicrobial activity with significant toxicity against mammalian cells. The aim of our design method was to generate a novel peptide with an enhanced antimicrobial potency and selectivity against microbial rather than mammalian cells. The results of our study revealed that the consensus peptide displayed potent antibacterial activities against a broad range of Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. Our membrane permeation studies displayed that the peptide efficiently induced membrane damage and consequently led to cell death through the process of cell lysis. The microbial DNA binding assay of the peptide was found to be very weak suggesting that the peptide is not targeting the microbial DNA. Pepcon induced minimal cytotoxicity at the antimicrobial concentrations as the hemolytic activity was found to be zero at the minimal inhibitory concentrations (MICs). The results of our study demonstrate that the consensus peptide design strategy is efficient in generating peptides.

  14. Antimicrobial potency and selectivity of simplified symmetric-end peptides.

    PubMed

    Dong, Na; Zhu, Xin; Chou, Shuli; Shan, Anshan; Li, Weizhong; Jiang, Junguang

    2014-09-01

    Because antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are potentially useful for the treatment of multidrug-resistant infections, more attention is being paid to the structural modification and structure-function relationship of both naturally occurring and synthetic AMPs. Previous studies indicated that Protegrin-1 (PG-1), isolated from porcine leukocytes, exhibited considerable antimicrobial activity and cytotoxicity. The β-turn of PG-1 floated on the surface of bacterial membrane, while its β-strand inserted into the bacterial membrane and formed pores that were dedicated to producing cytotoxicity. For reducing cytotoxicity and improving cells selectivity, we designed a series of simplified symmetric-end peptides by combining the β-turn of PG-1 with simple amino acid repeat sequences. The sequence of designed symmetric-end peptides is (XR)nH(RX)n, (n = 1,2; X represents I, F, W and P; H represents CRRRFC). The symmetric-end peptides displayed antimicrobial activity against both gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria. In particular, (XR)2H(RX)2 (X here is I, F and W) showed greater antimicrobial potency than PG-1. Hemolysis activity and cytotoxicity, detected by using human red blood cells (RBCs) and human embryonic lung fibroblasts MRC-5 cells, were observably lower than the native peptide PG-1. (IR)2H(RI)2 (IR2), folded into β-sheet structures, displayed the highest therapeutic index, suggesting its great cell selectivity. The fluorescence spectroscopy, flow cytometry, and electron microscopy observation indicated that IR2 exhibited great membrane penetration potential by inducing membrane blebbing, disruption and lysis. Collectively, generating symmetric-end β-sheet peptides is a promising strategy for designing effective AMPs with great antimicrobial activities and cell selectivity.

  15. Peptides with Dual Antimicrobial and Anticancer Activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Felício, Mário R.; Silva, Osmar N.; Gonçalves, Sônia; Santos, Nuno C.; Franco, Octávio L.

    2017-02-01

    In recent years, the number of people suffering from cancer and multi-resistant infections has increased, such that both diseases are already seen as current and future major causes of death. Moreover, chronic infections are one of the main causes of cancer, due to the instability in the immune system that allows cancer cells to proliferate. Likewise, the physical debility associated with cancer or with anticancer therapy itself often paves the way for opportunistic infections. It is urgent to develop new therapeutic methods, with higher efficiency and lower side effects. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are found in the innate immune system of a wide range of organisms. Identified as the most promising alternative to conventional molecules used nowadays against infections, some of them have been shown to have dual activity, both as antimicrobial and anticancer peptides (ACPs). Highly cationic and amphipathic, they have demonstrated efficacy against both conditions, with the number of nature-driven or synthetically designed peptides increasing year by year. With similar properties, AMPs that can also act as ACPs are viewed as future chemotherapeutic drugs, with the advantage of low propensity to resistance, which started this paradigm in the pharmaceutical market. These peptides have already been described as molecules presenting killing mechanisms at the membrane level, but also acting towards intracellular targets, which increases their success comparatively to specific one-target drugs. This review will approach the desirable characteristics of small peptides that demonstrated dual activity against microbial infections and cancer, as well as the peptides engaged in clinical trials.

  16. A novel family of antimicrobial peptides from the skin of Amolops loloensis.

    PubMed

    Wang, Aili; Wang, Jiyuan; Hong, Jing; Feng, Hao; Yang, Hailong; Yu, Xiaodong; Ma, Yufang; Lai, Ren

    2008-06-01

    While conducting experiments to investigate antimicrobial peptides of amphibians living in the Yunnan-Sichuan region of southwest China, a new family of antimicrobial peptides was identified from skin secretions of the rufous-spotted torrent frog, Amolops loloensis. Members of the new peptide family named amolopins are composed of 18 amino acids with a unique sequence, for example, NILSSIVNGINRALSFFG. By BLAST search, amolopins did no show similarity to any known peptides. Among the tested microorganisms, native and synthetic peptides only showed antimicrobial activities against Staphylococcus aureus ATCC2592 and Bacillus pumilus, no effects on other microorganisms. The CD spectroscopy showed that it adopted a structure of random combined with beta-sheet in water, Tris-HCl or Tris-HCl-SDS. Several cDNAs encoding amolopins were cloned from the skin cDNA library of A. loloensis. The precursors of amolopin are composed of 62 amino acid residues including predicted signal peptides, acidic propieces, and mature antimicrobial peptides. The preproregion of amolopin precursor comprises a hydrophobic signal peptide of 22 residues followed by an 18 residue acidic propiece which terminates by a typical prohormone processing signal Lys-Arg. The preproregions of precursors are very similar to other amphibian antimicrobial peptide precursors but the mature amolopins are different from other antimicrobial peptide families. The remarkable similarity of preproregions of precursors that give rise to very different antimicrobial peptides in distantly related frog species suggests that the corresponding genes form a multigene family originating from a common ancestor.

  17. Classification of antimicrobial peptides with imbalanced datasets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Camacho, Francy L.; Torres, Rodrigo; Ramos Pollán, Raúl

    2015-12-01

    In the last years, pattern recognition has been applied to several fields for solving multiple problems in science and technology as for example in protein prediction. This methodology can be useful for prediction of activity of biological molecules, e.g. for determination of antimicrobial activity of synthetic and natural peptides. In this work, we evaluate the performance of different physico-chemical properties of peptides (descriptors groups) in the presence of imbalanced data sets, when facing the task of detecting whether a peptide has antimicrobial activity. We evaluate undersampling and class weighting techniques to deal with the class imbalance with different classification methods and descriptor groups. Our classification model showed an estimated precision of 96% showing that descriptors used to codify the amino acid sequences contain enough information to correlate the peptides sequences with their antimicrobial activity by means of learning machines. Moreover, we show how certain descriptor groups (pseudoaminoacid composition type I) work better with imbalanced datasets while others (dipeptide composition) work better with balanced ones.

  18. Antimicrobial peptides and the skin immune defense system

    PubMed Central

    Schauber, Jürgen; Gallo, Richard L.

    2009-01-01

    Our skin is constantly challenged by microbes but is rarely infected. Cutaneous production of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) is a primary system for protection, and expression of some AMPs further increases in response to microbial invasion. Cathelicidins are unique AMPs that protect the skin through 2 distinct pathways: (1) direct antimicrobial activity and (2) initiation of a host response resulting in cytokine release, inflammation, angiogenesis, and reepithelialization. Cathelicidin dysfunction emerges as a central factor in the pathogenesis of several cutaneous diseases, including atopic dermatitis, in which cathelicidin is suppressed; rosacea, in which cathelicidin peptides are abnormally processed to forms that induce inflammation; and psoriasis, in which cathelicidin peptide converts self-DNA to a potent stimulus in an autoinflammatory cascade. Recent work identified vitamin D3 as a major factor involved in the regulation of cathelicidin. Therapies targeting control of cathelicidin and other AMPs might provide new approaches in the management of infectious and inflammatory skin diseases. PMID:18439663

  19. Design of self-processing antimicrobial peptides for plant protection.

    PubMed

    Powell, W A; Catranis, C M; Maynard, C A

    2000-08-01

    Small antimicrobial peptides are excellent candidates for inclusion in self-processing proteins that could be used to confer pathogen resistance in transgenic plants. Antimicrobial peptides as small as 22 amino acids in length have been designed to incorporate the residual amino acids left from protein processing by the tobacco etch virus'(TEVs') NIa protease. Also, by minimizing the length of these peptides and the number of highly hydrophobic residues, haemolytic activity was reduced without affecting the peptide's antimicrobial activity.

  20. Antimicrobial Peptides, Skin Infections and Atopic Dermatitis

    PubMed Central

    Hata, Tissa R.; Gallo, Richard L.

    2008-01-01

    The innate immune system evolved over 2 billion years ago to first recognize pathogens then eradicate them. Several distinct defects in this ancient but rapidly responsive element of human immune defense account for the increased incidence of skin infections in atopics. These defects include abnormalities in the physical barrier of the epidermis, alterations in microbial pattern recognition receptors such as toll receptors and NOD, and a diminished capacity to increase the expression of antimicrobial peptides during inflammation. Several antimicrobial peptides are affected including; cathelicidin, HBD-2, and HBD-3, which are lower in lesional skin of atopics compared to other inflammatory skin diseases, and dermcidin, which is decreased in sweat. Other defects in the immune defense barrier of atopics include a relative deficiency in plasmacytoid dendritic cells. In the future, understanding the cause of these defects may allow therapeutic intervention to reduce the incidence of infection in atopic individuals and potentially decrease the severity of this disorder. PMID:18620136

  1. Therapeutic antimicrobial peptides may compromise natural immunity

    PubMed Central

    Habets, Michelle G. J. L.; Brockhurst, Michael A.

    2012-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have been proposed as a promising new class of antimicrobials despite warnings that therapeutic use could drive the evolution of pathogens resistant to our own immunity peptides. Using experimental evolution, we demonstrate that Staphylococcus aureus rapidly evolved resistance to pexiganan, a drug-candidate for diabetic leg ulcer infections. Evolved resistance was costly in terms of impaired growth rate, but costs-of-resistance were completely ameliorated by compensatory adaptation. Crucially, we show that, in some populations, experimentally evolved resistance to pexiganan provided S. aureus with cross-resistance to human-neutrophil-defensin-1, a key component of the innate immune response to infection. This unintended consequence of therapeutic use could drastically undermine our innate immune system's ability to control and clear microbial infections. Our results therefore highlight grave potential risks of AMP therapies, with implications for their development. PMID:22279153

  2. Bacterial strategies of resistance to antimicrobial peptides

    PubMed Central

    Joo, Hwang-Soo; Fu, Chih-Iung

    2016-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are a key component of the host's innate immune system, targeting invasive and colonizing bacteria. For successful survival and colonization of the host, bacteria have a series of mechanisms to interfere with AMP activity, and AMP resistance is intimately connected with the virulence potential of bacterial pathogens. In particular, because AMPs are considered as potential novel antimicrobial drugs, it is vital to understand bacterial AMP resistance mechanisms. This review gives a comparative overview of Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacterial strategies of resistance to various AMPs, such as repulsion or sequestration by bacterial surface structures, alteration of membrane charge or fluidity, degradation and removal by efflux pumps. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Evolutionary ecology of arthropod antimicrobial peptides’. PMID:27160595

  3. Computational resources and tools for antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Liu, Shicai; Fan, Linlin; Sun, Jian; Lao, Xingzhen; Zheng, Heng

    2017-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), as evolutionarily conserved components of innate immune system, protect against pathogens including bacteria, fungi, viruses, and parasites. In general, AMPs are relatively small peptides (<10 kDa) with cationic nature and amphipathic structure and have modes of action different from traditional antibiotics. Up to now, there are more than 19 000 AMPs that have been reported, including those isolated from nature sources or by synthesis. They have been considered to be promising substitutes of conventional antibiotics in the quest to address the increasing occurrence of antibiotic resistance. However, most AMPs have modest direct antimicrobial activity, and their mechanisms of action, as well as their structure-activity relationships, are still poorly understood. Computational strategies are invaluable assets to provide insight into the activity of AMPs and thus exploit their potential as a new generation of antimicrobials. This article reviews the advances of AMP databases and computational tools for the prediction and design of new active AMPs. Copyright © 2016 European Peptide Society and John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  4. Antimicrobial peptides: a review of how peptide structure impacts antimicrobial activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Soares, Jason W.; Mello, Charlene M.

    2004-03-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have been discovered in insects, mammals, reptiles, and plants to protect against microbial infection. Many of these peptides have been isolated and studied exhaustively to decipher the molecular mechanisms that impart protection against infectious bacteria, fungi, and viruses. Unfortunately, the molecular mechanisms are still being debated within the scientific community but valuable clues have been obtained through structure/function relationship studies1. Biophysical studies have revealed that cecropins, isolated from insects and pigs, exhibit random structure in solution but undergo a conformational change to an amphipathic α-helix upon interaction with a membrane surface2. The lack of secondary structure in solution results in an extremely durable peptide able to survive exposure to high temperatures, organic solvents and incorporation into fibers and films without compromising antibacterial activity. Studies to better understand the antimicrobial action of cecropins and other AMPs have provided insight into the importance of peptide sequence and structure in antimicrobial activities. Therefore, enhancing our knowledge of how peptide structure imparts function may result in customized peptide sequences tailored for specific applications such as targeted cell delivery systems, novel antibiotics and food preservation additives. This review will summarize the current state of knowledge with respect to cell binding and antimicrobial activity of AMPs focusing primarily upon cecropins.

  5. Effects of dimerization on the structure and biological activity of antimicrobial peptide Ctx-Ha.

    PubMed

    Lorenzón, E N; Cespedes, G F; Vicente, E F; Nogueira, L G; Bauab, T M; Castro, M S; Cilli, E M

    2012-06-01

    It is well known that cationic antimicrobial peptides (cAMPs) are potential microbicidal agents for the increasing problem of antimicrobial resistance. However, the physicochemical properties of each peptide need to be optimized for clinical use. To evaluate the effects of dimerization on the structure and biological activity of the antimicrobial peptide Ctx-Ha, we have synthesized the monomeric and three dimeric (Lys-branched) forms of the Ctx-Ha peptide by solid-phase peptide synthesis using a combination of 9-fluorenylmethyloxycarbonyl (Fmoc) and t-butoxycarbonyl (Boc) chemical approaches. The antimicrobial activity assay showed that dimerization decreases the ability of the peptide to inhibit growth of bacteria or fungi; however, the dimeric analogs displayed a higher level of bactericidal activity. In addition, a dramatic increase (50 times) in hemolytic activity was achieved with these analogs. Permeabilization studies showed that the rate of carboxyfluorescein release was higher for the dimeric peptides than for the monomeric peptide, especially in vesicles that contained sphingomyelin. Despite different biological activities, the secondary structure and pore diameter were not significantly altered by dimerization. In contrast to the case for other dimeric cAMPs, we have shown that dimerization selectively decreases the antimicrobial activity of this peptide and increases the hemolytic activity. The results also show that the interaction between dimeric peptides and the cell wall could be responsible for the decrease of the antimicrobial activity of these peptides.

  6. Haemophilus ducreyi is resistant to human antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Mount, Kristy L B; Townsend, Carisa A; Bauer, Margaret E

    2007-09-01

    We examined the susceptibility of Haemophilus ducreyi to antimicrobial peptides likely to be encountered in vivo during human infection. H. ducreyi was significantly more resistant than Escherichia coli to the bactericidal effects of all peptides tested. Class I and II H. ducreyi strains exhibited similar levels of resistance to antimicrobial peptides.

  7. Two families of antimicrobial peptides from wasp (Vespa magnifica) venom.

    PubMed

    Xu, Xueqing; Li, Jianxu; Lu, Qiuming; Yang, Hailong; Zhang, Yungong; Lai, Ren

    2006-02-01

    The hornet possesses highly toxic venom, which is rich in toxin, enzymes and biologically active peptides. Many bioactive substances were identified from wasp venom. Two families of antimicrobial peptides were purified and characterized from the venom of the wasp, Vespamagnifica (Smith). The primary structures of these peptides are homologous to those of chemotactic peptides and mastoparans isolated from other vespid venoms. They also share similarity to temporins which are amphibian antimicrobial peptides identified from the skin of the frog, Ranaboylii. These peptides show antimicrobial activities against bacteria and fungi. However, they show little hemolytic activity against human blood red cells.

  8. Identification of antimicrobial peptides by using eigenvectors.

    PubMed

    Polanco, Carlos

    2016-01-01

    Antibacterial peptides are subject to broad research due to their potential application and the benefit they can provide for a wide range of diseases. In this work, a mathematical-computational method, called the Polarity Vector Method, is introduced that has a high discriminative level (>70%) to identify peptides associated with Gram (-) bacteria, Gram (+) bacteria, cancer cells, fungi, insects, mammalian cells, parasites, and viruses, taken from the Antimicrobial Peptides Database. This supervised method uses only eigenvectors from the incident polar matrix of the group studied. It was verified with a comparative study with another extensively verified method developed previously by our team, the Polarity Index Method. The number of positive hits of both methods was up to 98% in all the tests conducted.

  9. Peptides with Dual Antimicrobial and Anticancer Activities

    PubMed Central

    Felício, Mário R.; Silva, Osmar N.; Gonçalves, Sônia; Santos, Nuno C.; Franco, Octávio L.

    2017-01-01

    In recent years, the number of people suffering from cancer and multi-resistant infections has increased, such that both diseases are already seen as current and future major causes of death. Moreover, chronic infections are one of the main causes of cancer, due to the instability in the immune system that allows cancer cells to proliferate. Likewise, the physical debility associated with cancer or with anticancer therapy itself often paves the way for opportunistic infections. It is urgent to develop new therapeutic methods, with higher efficiency and lower side effects. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are found in the innate immune system of a wide range of organisms. Identified as the most promising alternative to conventional molecules used nowadays against infections, some of them have been shown to have dual activity, both as antimicrobial and anticancer peptides (ACPs). Highly cationic and amphipathic, they have demonstrated efficacy against both conditions, with the number of nature-driven or synthetically designed peptides increasing year by year. With similar properties, AMPs that can also act as ACPs are viewed as future chemotherapeutic drugs, with the advantage of low propensity to resistance, which started this paradigm in the pharmaceutical market. These peptides have already been described as molecules presenting killing mechanisms at the membrane level, but also acting toward intracellular targets, which increases their success compartively to one-target specific drugs. This review will approach the desirable characteristics of small peptides that demonstrated dual activity against microbial infections and cancer, as well as the peptides engaged in clinical trials. PMID:28271058

  10. Antimicrobial Peptides: An Emerging Category of Therapeutic Agents

    PubMed Central

    Mahlapuu, Margit; Håkansson, Joakim; Ringstad, Lovisa; Björn, Camilla

    2016-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), also known as host defense peptides, are short and generally positively charged peptides found in a wide variety of life forms from microorganisms to humans. Most AMPs have the ability to kill microbial pathogens directly, whereas others act indirectly by modulating the host defense systems. Against a background of rapidly increasing resistance development to conventional antibiotics all over the world, efforts to bring AMPs into clinical use are accelerating. Several AMPs are currently being evaluated in clinical trials as novel anti-infectives, but also as new pharmacological agents to modulate the immune response, promote wound healing, and prevent post-surgical adhesions. In this review, we provide an overview of the biological role, classification, and mode of action of AMPs, discuss the opportunities and challenges to develop these peptides for clinical applications, and review the innovative formulation strategies for application of AMPs. PMID:28083516

  11. In vitro determination of the short-chain synthetic peptide RP13 antimicrobial activity.

    PubMed

    Sánchez, Adrián; Calderón, Ernesto; Castañón-Alonso, Sandra L; Santos, Araceli; Hernández, Beatriz; Vázquez, Alfredo

    2014-01-01

    The proliferation of antibiotic-resistant microorganisms, along with the lack of new drugs against them, has elicited the interest of the scientific community on the study and development of endogenous synthetic compounds with bacteriostatic or bactericidal activity. In recent years, several short-chain, low molecular weight peptides isolated from natural sources such as plants and animals have demonstrated an array of antimicrobial activities. Despite having structural characteristics similar to microbicidal peptides isolated from human platelets, peptide RP11 does not exhibit antimicrobial activity. In vitro determination of the antimicrobial activity of the synthetic peptide RP13. Peptide RP13 was prepared modifying the original amino acids sequence of peptide RP11, reversing the position of the amino acids lysine and tyrosine in order to modify the conformation of the original peptide. These amino acids are localized close to the N-terminus of the peptidic chain. Peptide RP13 was prepared in solution using conventional methods for peptide synthesis. The antimicrobial activity of RP13 was assessed against the microorganisms S. aureus, E. faecalis and E. coli in a test solution and later evaluated by cultivation of plates during the first 2 h after inoculation of bacteria. RP13 activity antimicrobial was compared against tetracycline, a broad-spectrum antibiotic. The new peptide RP13, resulting form the structural modification of the amino acid sequence of peptide RP11, displayed antimicrobial activity. RP13 demonstrated to be more efficient inhibiting the growth of gram-positive than gramnegative bacteria. The structural modification of peptide RP11, obtained from human platelets, resulted in a new peptide with improved antimicrobial activity. These results clearly demonstrate that peptides of natural origin, as well as their synthetic analogs, represent an attractive alternative against pathogenic agents.

  12. An Electrospray Ionization Mass Spectrometry Study on the "In Vacuo" Hetero-Oligomers Formed by the Antimicrobial Peptides, Surfactin and Gramicidin S

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rautenbach, Marina; Vlok, N. Maré; Eyéghé-Bickong, Hans A.; van der Merwe, Marthinus J.; Stander, Marietjie A.

    2017-08-01

    It was previously observed that the lipopeptide surfactants in surfactin (Srf) have an antagonistic action towards the highly potent antimicrobial cyclodecapeptide, gramicidin S (GS). This study reports on some of the molecular aspects of the antagonism as investigated through complementary electrospray ionization mass spectrometry techniques. We were able to detect stable 1:1 and 2:1 hetero-oligomers in a mixture of surfactin and gramicidin S. The noncovalent interaction between GS and Srf, with the proposed equilibrium: GS Srf↔GS+Srf correlated to apparent K d values of 6-9 μM in gas-phase and 1 μM in aqueous solution. The apparent K d values decreased with a longer incubation time and indicated a slow oligomerization equilibrium. Furthermore, the low μM K d app values of GS Srf↔GS+Srf fell within the biological concentration range and related to the 2- to 3-fold increase in [GS] needed for bacterial growth inhibition in the presence of Srf. Competition studies indicated that neither Na+ nor Ca2+ had a major effect on the stability of preformed heterodimers and that GS in fact out-competed Ca2+ and Na+ from Srf. Traveling wave ion mobility mass spectrometry revealed near symmetrical peaks of the heterodimers correlating to a compact dimer conformation that depend on specific interactions. Collision-induced dissociation studies indicated that the peptide interaction is most probably between one Orn residue in GS and the Asp residue, but not the Glu residue in Srf. We propose that flanking hydrophobic residues in both peptides stabilize the antagonistic and inactive peptide hetero-oligomers and shield the specific polar interactions in an aqueous environment.

  13. Resistance to Antimicrobial Peptides in Vibrios

    PubMed Central

    Destoumieux-Garzón, Delphine; Duperthuy, Marylise; Vanhove, Audrey Sophie; Schmitt, Paulina; Wai, Sun Nyunt

    2014-01-01

    Vibrios are associated with a broad diversity of hosts that produce antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) as part of their defense against microbial infections. In particular, vibrios colonize epithelia, which function as protective barriers and express AMPs as a first line of chemical defense against pathogens. Recent studies have shown they can also colonize phagocytes, key components of the animal immune system. Phagocytes infiltrate infected tissues and use AMPs to kill the phagocytosed microorganisms intracellularly, or deliver their antimicrobial content extracellularly to circumvent tissue infection. We review here the mechanisms by which vibrios have evolved the capacity to evade or resist the potent antimicrobial defenses of the immune cells or tissues they colonize. Among their strategies to resist killing by AMPs, primarily vibrios use membrane remodeling mechanisms. In particular, some highly resistant strains substitute hexaacylated Lipid A with a diglycine residue to reduce their negative surface charge, thereby lowering their electrostatic interactions with cationic AMPs. As a response to envelope stress, which can be induced by membrane-active agents including AMPs, vibrios also release outer membrane vesicles to create a protective membranous shield that traps extracellular AMPs and prevents interaction of the peptides with their own membranes. Finally, once AMPs have breached the bacterial membrane barriers, vibrios use RND efflux pumps, similar to those of other species, to transport AMPs out of their cytoplasmic space. PMID:27025756

  14. Antiendotoxin activity of cationic peptide antimicrobial agents.

    PubMed Central

    Gough, M; Hancock, R E; Kelly, N M

    1996-01-01

    The endotoxin from gram-negative bacteria consists of a molecule lipopolysaccharide (LPS) which can be shed by bacteria during antimicrobial therapy. A resulting syndrome, endotoxic shock, is a leading cause of death in the developed world. Thus, there is great interest in the development of antimicrobial agents which can reverse rather than promote sepsis, especially given the recent disappointing clinical performance of antiendotoxin therapies. We describe here two small cationic peptides, MBI-27 and MBI-28, which have both antiendotoxic and antibacterial activities in vitro and in vivo in animal models. We had previously demonstrated that these peptides bind to LPS with an affinity equivalent to that of polymyxin B. Consistent with this, the peptides blocked the ability of LPS and intact cells to induce the endotoxic shock mediator, tumor necrosis factor (TNF), upon incubation with the RAW 264.7 murine macrophage cell line. MBI-28 was equivalent to polymyxin B in its ability to block LPS induction of TNF by this cell line, even when added 60 min after the TNF stimulus. Furthermore, MBI-28 offered significant protection in a galactosamine-sensitized mouse model of lethal endotoxic shock. This protection correlated with the ability of MBI-28 to reduce LPS-induced circulating TNF by nearly 90% in this mouse model. Both MBI-27 and MBI-28 demonstrated antibacterial activity against gram-negative bacteria in vitro and in vivo against Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections in neutropenic mice. PMID:8945527

  15. Antiendotoxin activity of cationic peptide antimicrobial agents.

    PubMed

    Gough, M; Hancock, R E; Kelly, N M

    1996-12-01

    The endotoxin from gram-negative bacteria consists of a molecule lipopolysaccharide (LPS) which can be shed by bacteria during antimicrobial therapy. A resulting syndrome, endotoxic shock, is a leading cause of death in the developed world. Thus, there is great interest in the development of antimicrobial agents which can reverse rather than promote sepsis, especially given the recent disappointing clinical performance of antiendotoxin therapies. We describe here two small cationic peptides, MBI-27 and MBI-28, which have both antiendotoxic and antibacterial activities in vitro and in vivo in animal models. We had previously demonstrated that these peptides bind to LPS with an affinity equivalent to that of polymyxin B. Consistent with this, the peptides blocked the ability of LPS and intact cells to induce the endotoxic shock mediator, tumor necrosis factor (TNF), upon incubation with the RAW 264.7 murine macrophage cell line. MBI-28 was equivalent to polymyxin B in its ability to block LPS induction of TNF by this cell line, even when added 60 min after the TNF stimulus. Furthermore, MBI-28 offered significant protection in a galactosamine-sensitized mouse model of lethal endotoxic shock. This protection correlated with the ability of MBI-28 to reduce LPS-induced circulating TNF by nearly 90% in this mouse model. Both MBI-27 and MBI-28 demonstrated antibacterial activity against gram-negative bacteria in vitro and in vivo against Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections in neutropenic mice.

  16. Cationic Hydrophobic Peptides with Antimicrobial Activity

    PubMed Central

    Stark, Margareta; Liu, Li-Ping; Deber, Charles M.

    2002-01-01

    The MICs of cationic, hydrophobic peptides of the prototypic sequence KKAAAXAAAAAXAAWAAXAAAKKKK-amide (where X is one of the 20 commonly occurring amino acids) are in a low micromolar range for a panel of gram-negative and gram-positive bacteria, with no or low hemolytic activity against human and rabbit erythrocytes. The peptides are active only when the average segmental hydrophobicity of the 19-residue core is above an experimentally determined threshold value (where X is Phe, Trp, Leu, Ile, Met, Val, Cys, or Ala). Antimicrobial activity could be increased by using peptides that were truncated from the prototype length to 11 core residues, with X being Phe and with 6 Lys residues grouped at the N terminus. We propose a mechanism for the interaction between these peptides and bacterial membranes similar to the “carpet model,” wherein the Lys residues interact with the anionic phospholipid head groups in the bacterial membrane surface and the hydrophobic core portion of the peptide is then able to interact with the lipid bilayer, causing disruption of the bacterial membrane. PMID:12384369

  17. Anti-antimicrobial peptides: folding-mediated host defense antagonists.

    PubMed

    Ryan, Lloyd; Lamarre, Baptiste; Diu, Ting; Ravi, Jascindra; Judge, Peter J; Temple, Adam; Carr, Matthew; Cerasoli, Eleonora; Su, Bo; Jenkinson, Howard F; Martyna, Glenn; Crain, Jason; Watts, Anthony; Ryadnov, Maxim G

    2013-07-12

    Antimicrobial or host defense peptides are innate immune regulators found in all multicellular organisms. Many of them fold into membrane-bound α-helices and function by causing cell wall disruption in microorganisms. Herein we probe the possibility and functional implications of antimicrobial antagonism mediated by complementary coiled-coil interactions between antimicrobial peptides and de novo designed antagonists: anti-antimicrobial peptides. Using sequences from native helical families such as cathelicidins, cecropins, and magainins we demonstrate that designed antagonists can co-fold with antimicrobial peptides into functionally inert helical oligomers. The properties and function of the resulting assemblies were studied in solution, membrane environments, and in bacterial culture by a combination of chiroptical and solid-state NMR spectroscopies, microscopy, bioassays, and molecular dynamics simulations. The findings offer a molecular rationale for anti-antimicrobial responses with potential implications for antimicrobial resistance.

  18. Cationic Antimicrobial Peptide Resistance in Neisseria meningitidis

    PubMed Central

    Tzeng, Yih-Ling; Ambrose, Karita D.; Zughaier, Susu; Zhou, Xiaoliu; Miller, Yoon K.; Shafer, William M.; Stephens, David S.

    2005-01-01

    Cationic antimicrobial peptides (CAMPs) are important components of the innate host defense system against microbial infections and microbial products. However, the human pathogen Neisseria meningitidis is intrinsically highly resistant to CAMPs, such as polymyxin B (PxB) (MIC ≥ 512 μg/ml). To ascertain the mechanisms by which meningococci resist PxB, mutants that displayed increased sensitivity (≥4-fold) to PxB were identified from a library of mariner transposon mutants generated in a meningococcal strain, NMB. Surprisingly, more than half of the initial PxB-sensitive mutants had insertions within the mtrCDE operon, which encodes proteins forming a multidrug efflux pump. Additional PxB-sensitive mariner mutants were identified from a second round of transposon mutagenesis performed in an mtr efflux pump-deficient background. Further, a mutation in lptA, the phosphoethanolamine (PEA) transferase responsible for modification of the lipid A head groups, was identified to cause the highest sensitivity to PxB. Mutations within the mtrD or lptA genes also increased meningococcal susceptibility to two structurally unrelated CAMPs, human LL-37 and protegrin-1. Consistently, PxB neutralized inflammatory responses elicited by the lptA mutant lipooligosaccharide more efficiently than those induced by wild-type lipooligosaccharide. mariner mutants with increased resistance to PxB were also identified in NMB background and found to contain insertions within the pilMNOPQ operon involved in pilin biogenesis. Taken together, these data indicated that meningococci utilize multiple mechanisms including the action of the MtrC-MtrD-MtrE efflux pump and lipid A modification as well as the type IV pilin secretion system to modulate levels of CAMP resistance. The modification of meningococcal lipid A head groups with PEA also prevents neutralization of the biological effects of endotoxin by CAMP. PMID:16030233

  19. Antimicrobial peptides in the centipede Scolopendra subspinipes mutilans.

    PubMed

    Yoo, Won Gi; Lee, Joon Ha; Shin, Younhee; Shim, Jae-Young; Jung, Myunghee; Kang, Byeong-Chul; Oh, Jaedon; Seong, Jiyeon; Lee, Hak Kyo; Kong, Hong Sik; Song, Ki-Duk; Yun, Eun-Young; Kim, In-Woo; Kwon, Young-Nam; Lee, Dong Gun; Hwang, Ui-Wook; Park, Junhyung; Hwang, Jae Sam

    2014-06-01

    The centipede Scolopendra subspinipes mutilans is an environmentally beneficial and medically important arthropod species. Although this species is increasingly applied as a reliable source of new antimicrobial peptides, the transcriptome of this species is a prerequisite for more rational selection of antimicrobial peptides. In this report, we isolated total RNA from the whole body of adult centipedes, S. subspinipes mutilans, that were nonimmunized and immunized against Escherichia coli, and we generated a total of 77,063 pooled contigs and singletons using high-throughput sequencing. To screen putative antimicrobial peptides, in silico analyses of the S. subspinipes mutilans transcriptome were performed based on the physicochemical evidence of length, charge, isoelectric point, and in vitro and in vivo aggregation scores together with the existence of continuous antimicrobial peptide stretches. Moreover, we excluded some transcripts that showed similarity with both previously known antimicrobial peptides and the human proteome, had a proteolytic cleavage site, and had downregulated expression compared with the nonimmunized sample. As a result, we selected 17 transcripts and tested their antimicrobial activity with a radial diffusion assay. Among them, ten synthetic peptides experimentally showed antimicrobial activity against microbes and no toxicity to mouse erythrocytes. Our results provide not only a useful set of antimicrobial peptide candidates and an efficient strategy for novel antimicrobial peptide development but also the transcriptome data of a big centipede as a valuable resource.

  20. A novel antimicrobial peptide from skin secretions of the tree frog Theloderma kwangsiensis.

    PubMed

    Yan, Hongli; Liu, Yingying; Tang, Jing; Mo, Guoxiang; Song, Yuzhu; Yan, Xiuwen; Wei, Lin; Lai, Ren

    2013-09-01

    Most of amphibians belonging to family Rhacophoridae live in arboreal habitats. A large number of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have been identified from amphibian skins. No antimicrobial peptide from Rhacophoridae amphibians has been reported. In this study, we purified and characterized a novel antimicrobial peptide, pleurain-a1-thel from skin secretions of the tree frog, Theloderma kwangsiensis. Its amino acid sequence was determined as RILTMTKRVKMPQLYKQIVCRLFKTC by Edman degradation, mass spectrometry analysis and cDNA cloning. There are two cysteines, which form an intra-molecular disulfide bridge, in the sequence of pleurain-a1-thel. Pleurain-a1-thel exerted potential antimicrobial activities against wide spectrum of microorganisms, including Gram-negative and -positive bacteria and fungi. It exerted little hemolytic activity in human or rabbit red cells. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of antimicrobial peptide from Rhacophoridae amphibians.

  1. Fatty acid conjugation enhances the activities of antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhining; Yuan, Penghui; Xing, Meng; He, Zhumei; Dong, Chuanfu; Cao, Yongchang; Liu, Qiuyun

    2013-04-01

    Antimicrobial peptides are small molecules that play a crucial role in innate immunity in multi-cellular organisms, and usually expressed and secreted constantly at basal levels to prevent infection, but local production can be augmented upon an infection. The clock is ticking as rising antibiotic abuse has led to the emergence of many drug resistance bacteria. Due to their broad spectrum antibiotic and antifungal activities as well as anti-viral and anti-tumor activities, efforts are being made to develop antimicrobial peptides into future microbial agents. This article describes some of the recent patents on antimicrobial peptides with fatty acid conjugation. Potency and selectivity of antimicrobial peptide can be modulated with fatty acid tails of variable length. Interaction between membranes and antimicrobial peptides was affected by fatty acid conjugation. At concentrations above the critical miscelle concentration (CMC), propensity of solution selfassembly hampered binding of the peptide to cell membranes. Overall, fatty acid conjugation has enhanced the activities of antimicrobial peptides, and occasionally it rendered inactive antimicrobial peptides to be bioactive. Antimicrobial peptides can not only be used as medicine but also as food additives.

  2. Plant Antimicrobial Peptides as Potential Anticancer Agents

    PubMed Central

    Guzmán-Rodríguez, Jaquelina Julia; López-Gómez, Rodolfo

    2015-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are part of the innate immune defense mechanism of many organisms and are promising candidates to treat infections caused by pathogenic bacteria to animals and humans. AMPs also display anticancer activities because of their ability to inactivate a wide range of cancer cells. Cancer remains a cause of high morbidity and mortality worldwide. Therefore, the development of methods for its control is desirable. Attractive alternatives include plant AMP thionins, defensins, and cyclotides, which have anticancer activities. Here, we provide an overview of plant AMPs anticancer activities, with an emphasis on their mode of action, their selectivity, and their efficacy. PMID:25815333

  3. Membrane Disruption Mechanism by Antimicrobial Peptides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Ka Yee C.

    2011-03-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are a class of small (less than100 residues) host defense peptides that induce selective membrane lytic activity against microbes. To understand the mechanism of membrane disruption by AMPs, we investigated, via atomic force microscopy, topological changes in supported phospholipid bilayers induced by protegrin-1 (PG-1). We have observed that PG-1 induces structural transformations, progressing from fingerlike instabilities at bilayer edges, to the formation of sievelike nanoporous structures and finally to a network of stripelike structures in a zwitterionic dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine (DMPC) model membrane in buffer, with increasing PG-1 concentration. Our results suggest that AMPs act to lower the interfacial energy of the bilayer in a way similar to detergents. By varying the lipid composition, temperature and using AMPs with different secondary structures, we are able to identify factors other than electrostatics that are important for the efficacy of AMPs.

  4. Antimicrobial peptides keep insect endosymbionts under control.

    PubMed

    Login, Frédéric H; Balmand, Séverine; Vallier, Agnès; Vincent-Monégat, Carole; Vigneron, Aurélien; Weiss-Gayet, Michèle; Rochat, Didier; Heddi, Abdelaziz

    2011-10-21

    Vertically transmitted endosymbionts persist for millions of years in invertebrates and play an important role in animal evolution. However, the functional basis underlying the maintenance of these long-term resident bacteria is unknown. We report that the weevil coleoptericin-A (ColA) antimicrobial peptide selectively targets endosymbionts within the bacteriocytes and regulates their growth through the inhibition of cell division. Silencing the colA gene with RNA interference resulted in a decrease in size of the giant filamentous endosymbionts, which escaped from the bacteriocytes and spread into insect tissues. Although this family of peptides is commonly linked with microbe clearance, this work shows that endosymbiosis benefits from ColA, suggesting that long-term host-symbiont coevolution might have shaped immune effectors for symbiont maintenance.

  5. DBAASP: database of antimicrobial activity and structure of peptides.

    PubMed

    Gogoladze, Giorgi; Grigolava, Maia; Vishnepolsky, Boris; Chubinidze, Mindia; Duroux, Patrice; Lefranc, Marie-Paule; Pirtskhalava, Malak

    2014-08-01

    The Database of Antimicrobial Activity and Structure of Peptides (DBAASP) is a manually curated database for those peptides for which antimicrobial activity against particular targets has been evaluated experimentally. The database is a depository of complete information on: the chemical structure of peptides; target species; target object of cell; peptide antimicrobial/haemolytic/cytotoxic activities; and experimental conditions at which activities were estimated. The DBAASP search page allows the user to search peptides according to their structural characteristics, complexity type (monomer, dimer and two-peptide), source, synthesis type (ribosomal, nonribosomal and synthetic) and target species. The database prediction algorithm provides a tool for rational design of new antimicrobial peptides. DBAASP is accessible at http://www.biomedicine.org.ge/dbaasp/.

  6. ER stress stimulates production of the key antimicrobial peptide, cathelicidin, by forming a previously unidentified intracellular S1P signaling complex.

    PubMed

    Park, Kyungho; Ikushiro, Hiroko; Seo, Ho Seong; Shin, Kyong-Oh; Kim, Young Il; Kim, Jong Youl; Lee, Yong-Moon; Yano, Takato; Holleran, Walter M; Elias, Peter; Uchida, Yoshikazu

    2016-03-08

    We recently identified a previously unidentified sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) signaling mechanism that stimulates production of a key innate immune element, cathelicidin antimicrobial peptide (CAMP), in mammalian cells exposed to external perturbations, such as UVB irradiation and other oxidative stressors that provoke subapoptotic levels of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress, independent of the well-known vitamin D receptor-dependent mechanism. ER stress increases cellular ceramide and one of its distal metabolites, S1P, which activates NF-κB followed by C/EBPα activation, leading to CAMP production, but in a S1P receptor-independent fashion. We now show that S1P activates NF-κB through formation of a previously unidentified signaling complex, consisting of S1P, TRAF2, and RIP1 that further associates with three stress-responsive proteins; i.e., heat shock proteins (GRP94 and HSP90α) and IRE1α. S1P specifically interacts with the N-terminal domain of heat shock proteins. Because this ER stress-initiated mechanism is operative in both epithelial cells and macrophages, it appears to be a universal, highly conserved response, broadly protective against diverse external perturbations that lead to increased ER stress. Finally, these studies further illuminate how ER stress and S1P orchestrate critical stress-specific signals that regulate production of one protective response by stimulating production of the key innate immune element, CAMP.

  7. Safety and Efficacy of Antimicrobial Peptides against Naturally Acquired Leishmaniasis

    PubMed Central

    Alberola, J.; Rodríguez, A.; Francino, O.; Roura, X.; Rivas, L.; Andreu, D.

    2004-01-01

    Leishmaniases, which are important causes of morbidity and mortality in humans and dogs, are extremely difficult to treat. Antimicrobial peptides are rarely used as alternative treatments for naturally acquired parasitic diseases. Here we report that the acylated synthetic antimicrobial peptide Oct-CA(1-7)M(2-9) is safe and effective for treating naturally acquired canine leishmaniasis. PMID:14742227

  8. Snake Cathelicidin NA-CATH and Smaller Helical Antimicrobial Peptides Are Effective against Burkholderia thailandensis

    PubMed Central

    Blower, Ryan J.; Barksdale, Stephanie M.; van Hoek, Monique L.

    2015-01-01

    Burkholderia thailandensis is a Gram-negative soil bacterium used as a model organism for B. pseudomallei, the causative agent of melioidosis and an organism classified category B priority pathogen and a Tier 1 select agent for its potential use as a biological weapon. Burkholderia species are reportedly “highly resistant” to antimicrobial agents, including cyclic peptide antibiotics, due to multiple resistance systems, a hypothesis we decided to test using antimicrobial (host defense) peptides. In this study, a number of cationic antimicrobial peptides (CAMPs) were tested in vitro against B. thailandensis for both antimicrobial activity and inhibition of biofilm formation. Here, we report that the Chinese cobra (Naja atra) cathelicidin NA-CATH was significantly antimicrobial against B. thailandensis. Additional cathelicidins, including the human cathelicidin LL-37, a sheep cathelicidin SMAP-29, and some smaller ATRA peptide derivatives of NA-CATH were also effective. The D-enantiomer of one small peptide (ATRA-1A) was found to be antimicrobial as well, with EC50 in the range of the L-enantiomer. Our results also demonstrate that human alpha-defensins (HNP-1 & -2) and a short beta-defensin-derived peptide (Peptide 4 of hBD-3) were not bactericidal against B. thailandensis. We also found that the cathelicidin peptides, including LL-37, NA-CATH, and SMAP-29, possessed significant ability to prevent biofilm formation of B. thailandensis. Additionally, we show that LL-37 and its D-enantiomer D-LL-37 can disperse pre-formed biofilms. These results demonstrate that although B. thailandensis is highly resistant to many antibiotics, cyclic peptide antibiotics such as polymyxin B, and defensing peptides, some antimicrobial peptides including the elapid snake cathelicidin NA-CATH exert significant antimicrobial and antibiofilm activity towards B. thailandensis. PMID:26196513

  9. Antimicrobial Peptides in Biomedical Device Manufacturing.

    PubMed

    Riool, Martijn; de Breij, Anna; Drijfhout, Jan W; Nibbering, Peter H; Zaat, Sebastian A J

    2017-01-01

    Over the past decades the use of medical devices, such as catheters, artificial heart valves, prosthetic joints, and other implants, has grown significantly. Despite continuous improvements in device design, surgical procedures, and wound care, biomaterial-associated infections (BAI) are still a major problem in modern medicine. Conventional antibiotic treatment often fails due to the low levels of antibiotic at the site of infection. The presence of biofilms on the biomaterial and/or the multidrug-resistant phenotype of the bacteria further impair the efficacy of antibiotic treatment. Removal of the biomaterial is then the last option to control the infection. Clearly, there is a pressing need for alternative strategies to prevent and treat BAI. Synthetic antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are considered promising candidates as they are active against a broad spectrum of (antibiotic-resistant) planktonic bacteria and biofilms. Moreover, bacteria are less likely to develop resistance to these rapidly-acting peptides. In this review we highlight the four main strategies, three of which applying AMPs, in biomedical device manufacturing to prevent BAI. The first involves modification of the physicochemical characteristics of the surface of implants. Immobilization of AMPs on surfaces of medical devices with a variety of chemical techniques is essential in the second strategy. The main disadvantage of these two strategies relates to the limited antibacterial effect in the tissue surrounding the implant. This limitation is addressed by the third strategy that releases AMPs from a coating in a controlled fashion. Lastly, AMPs can be integrated in the design and manufacturing of additively manufactured/3D-printed implants, owing to the physicochemical characteristics of the implant material and the versatile manufacturing technologies compatible with antimicrobials incorporation. These novel technologies utilizing AMPs will contribute to development of novel and safe

  10. Ceragenins: cholic acid-based mimics of antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Lai, Xin-Zhong; Feng, Yanshu; Pollard, Jacob; Chin, Judy N; Rybak, Michael J; Bucki, Robert; Epand, Raquel F; Epand, Richard M; Savage, Paul B

    2008-10-01

    The prevalence of drug-resistant bacteria drives the quest for new antimicrobials, including those that are not expected to readily engender resistance. One option is to mimic Nature's most ubiquitous means of controlling bacterial growth, antimicrobial peptides, which have evolved over eons. In general, bacteria remain susceptible to these peptides. Human antimicrobial peptides play a central role in innate immunity, and deficiencies in these peptides have been tied to increased rates of infection. However, clinical use of antimicrobial peptides is hampered by issues of cost and stability. The development of nonpeptide mimics of antimicrobial peptides may provide the best of both worlds: a means of using the same mechanism chosen by Nature to control bacterial growth without the problems associated with peptide therapeutics. The ceragenins were developed to mimic the cationic, facially amphiphilic structures of most antimicrobial peptides. These compounds reproduce the required morphology using a bile-acid scaffolding and appended amine groups. The resulting compounds are actively bactericidal against both gram-positive and gram-negative organisms, including drug-resistant bacteria. This antimicrobial activity originates from selective association of the ceragenins with negatively charged bacterial membrane components. Association has been studied with synthetic models of bacterial membrane components, with bacterial lipopolysaccharide, with vesicles derived from bacterial phospholipids, and with whole cells. Comparisons of the antimicrobial activities of ceragenins and representative antimicrobial peptides suggest that these classes of compounds share a mechanism of action. Rapid membrane depolarization is caused by both classes as well as blebbing of bacterial membranes. Bacteria express the same genes in response to both classes of compounds. On the basis of the antibacterial activities of ceragenins and preliminary in vivo studies, we expect these compounds to

  11. Molecular characterization of a novel antimicrobial peptide from Mytilus coruscus.

    PubMed

    Liao, Zhi; Wang, Xin-chao; Liu, Hui-hui; Fan, Mei-hua; Sun, Jing-jing; Shen, Wang

    2013-02-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are components of the innate immune responses that form the first line of host defense against pathogens. Marine mussels can produce a surprising abundance of cysteine-rich AMPs pertaining to the defensin, myticin, mytilin and mytimycin families, particularly in the circulating hemocytes. In the current study, we purified and characterized a novel cysteine-rich peptide with remarkable antibacterial activity from Mytilus coruscus and designated with myticusin-1, a 104-amino acid long polypeptide including 10 cysteine residues forming an unusual cysteine pattern. Antimicrobial assays demonstrated that myticusin-1 exhibited stronger anti-microbial properties against Gram-positive bacteria more than Gram-negative bacteria and fungus. Furthermore, myticusin-1 caused significant morphological alterations in both Sarcina luteus and Escherichia coli as shown by transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The cDNA of myticusin-1 was cloned and sequenced from the hemocytes cDNA library of M. coruscus. The mRNA transcripts of myticusin-1 are mainly detected in hemocyte, which indicates that myticusin-1 are specifically synthesized and stored in circulating hemocytes. The expression level of myticusin-1 in hemocytes was up-regulated and reached the highest level at 36 h after S. luteus challenge, which was 20-fold increase compared to that of the control group. These results indicated that myticusin-1 was involved in the host immune response against bacterial infection and might contribute to the clearance of invading bacteria.

  12. Immunomodulatory effects of anti-microbial peptides.

    PubMed

    Otvos, Laszlo

    2016-09-01

    Anti-microbial peptides (AMPs) were originally thought to exert protecting actions against bacterial infection by disintegrating bacterial membranes. Upon identification of internal bacterial targets, the view changed and moved toward inhibition of prokaryote-specific biochemical processes. However, the level of none of these activities can explain the robust efficacy of some of these peptides in animal models of systemic and cutaneous infections. A rapidly growing panel of reports suggests that AMPs, now called host-defense peptides (HDPs), act through activating the immune system of the host. This includes recruitment and activation of macrophages and mast cells, inducing chemokine production and altering NF-κB signaling processes. As a result, both pro- and anti-inflammatory responses are elevated together with activation of innate and adaptive immunity mechanisms, wound healing, and apoptosis. HDPs sterilize the systemic circulation and local injury sites significantly more efficiently than pure single-endpoint in vitro microbiological or biochemical data would suggest and actively aid recovering from tissue damage after or even without bacterial infections. However, the multiple and, often opposing, immunomodulatory functions of HDPs require exceptional care in therapeutic considerations.

  13. Effect of Fatty Acid Conjugation on Antimicrobial Peptide Activity

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2004-12-01

    killing mechanism of antimicrobial peptides makes them an interesting alternative to traditional antibiotics, as target bacteria may be less able...C14-AKK and C16-AKK to within a 7% error are 220 and 16mM respectively. Since amphipathicity is requisite for antimicrobial action KAK is not...Schnaare, 2000: Antimicrobial evaluation of N-alkyl betaines and N-alkyl-N,N-dimethylamine oxides with variations in chain length. Antimicrobial Agents

  14. Substantiation in Enterococcus faecalis of Dose-Dependent Resistance and Cross-Resistance to Pore-Forming Antimicrobial Peptides by Use of a Polydiacetylene-Based Colorimetric Assay▿

    PubMed Central

    Mehla, Jitender; Sood, S. K.

    2011-01-01

    A better understanding of the antimicrobial peptide (AMP) resistance mechanisms of bacteria will facilitate the design of effective and potent AMPs. Therefore, to understand resistance mechanisms and for in vitro assessment, variants of Enterococcus faecalis that are resistant to different doses of the fungal AMP alamethicin (Almr) were selected and characterized. The resistance developed was dose dependent, as both doses of alamethicin and degrees of resistance were colinear. The formation of bacterial cell aggregates observed in resistant cells may be the prime mechanism of resistance because overall, a smaller cell surface in aggregated cells is exposed to AMPs. Increased rigidity of the membranes of Almr variants, because of their altered fatty acids, was correlated with limited membrane penetration by alamethicin. Thus, resistance developed against alamethicin was an adaptation of the bacterial cells through changes in their morphological features and physiological activity and the composition of membrane phospholipids. The Almr variants showed cross-resistance to pediocin, which indicated that resistance developed against both AMPs may share a mechanism, i.e., an alteration in the cell membrane. High percentages of colorimetric response by both AMPs against polydiacetylene/lipid biomimetic membranes of Almr variants confirmed that altered phospholipid and fatty acid compositions were responsible for acquisition of resistance. So far, this is the only report of quantification of resistance and cross-resistance using an in vitro colorimetric approach. Our results imply that a single AMP or AMP analog may be effective against bacterial strains having a common mechanism of resistance. Therefore, an understanding of resistance would contribute to the development of a single efficient, potent AMP against resistant strains that share a mechanism of resistance. PMID:21115699

  15. From antimicrobial to anticancer peptides. A review

    PubMed Central

    Gaspar, Diana; Veiga, A. Salomé; Castanho, Miguel A. R. B.

    2013-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are part of the innate immune defense mechanism of many organisms. Although AMPs have been essentially studied and developed as potential alternatives for fighting infectious diseases, their use as anticancer peptides (ACPs) in cancer therapy either alone or in combination with other conventional drugs has been regarded as a therapeutic strategy to explore. As human cancer remains a cause of high morbidity and mortality worldwide, an urgent need of new, selective, and more efficient drugs is evident. Even though ACPs are expected to be selective toward tumor cells without impairing the normal body physiological functions, the development of a selective ACP has been a challenge. It is not yet possible to predict antitumor activity based on ACPs structures. ACPs are unique molecules when compared to the actual chemotherapeutic arsenal available for cancer treatment and display a variety of modes of action which in some types of cancer seem to co-exist. Regardless the debate surrounding the definition of structure-activity relationships for ACPs, great effort has been invested in ACP design and the challenge of improving effective killing of tumor cells remains. As detailed studies on ACPs mechanisms of action are crucial for optimizing drug development, in this review we provide an overview of the literature concerning peptides' structure, modes of action, selectivity, and efficacy and also summarize some of the many ACPs studied and/or developed for targeting different solid and hematologic malignancies with special emphasis on the first group. Strategies described for drug development and for increasing peptide selectivity toward specific cells while reducing toxicity are also discussed. PMID:24101917

  16. Nanostructures as promising tools for delivery of antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Brandelli, A

    2012-07-01

    Antimicrobial peptides have been extensively investigated for their potential applications as therapeutics and food biopreservatives. The antimicrobial activity may be impaired by the susceptibility for proteolytic degradation and undesirable interactions of the antimicrobial peptide in the biological environment. Development of nanostructures for entrapment and delivery of antimicrobial peptides may represent an alternative to the direct application of these substances. Lipid nanovesicles have been developed for encapsulation of antimicrobial peptides. Phosphatidylcholine is often employed in liposome manufacture, which is mostly achieved by the thin-film hydration method. Nanofibers may allow different physical modes of drug loading, including direct adsorption on the nanofiber surface or the assembly of drug-loaded nanoparticles. Self-assembled peptides reveal attractive features as nanostructures for applications in drug delivery and promising as antimicrobial agent for treatment of brain infections. Magnetic nanoparticles and nanotubules are also potential structures for entrapment of antimicrobial peptides. Nanoparticles can be also chemically modified with specific cell surface ligands to enhance cell adhesion and site specific delivery. This article reviews the most important nanostructures as promising tools for peptide delivery systems.

  17. Mechanical properties that influence antimicrobial peptide activity in lipid membranes.

    PubMed

    Marín-Medina, Nathaly; Ramírez, Diego Alejandro; Trier, Steve; Leidy, Chad

    2016-12-01

    Antimicrobial peptides are small amphiphilic proteins found in animals and plants as essential components of the innate immune system and whose function is to control bacterial infectious activity. In order to accomplish their function, antimicrobial peptides use different mechanisms of action which have been deeply studied in view of their potential exploitation to treat antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections. One of the main mechanisms of action of these peptides is the disruption of the bacterial membrane through pore formation, which, in some cases, takes place via a monomer to oligomer cooperative transition. Previous studies have shown that lipid composition, and the presence of exogenous components, such as cholesterol in model membranes or carotenoids in bacteria, can affect the potency of distinct antimicrobial peptides. At the same time, considering the membrane as a two-dimensional material, it has been shown that membrane composition defines its mechanical properties which might be relevant in many membrane-related processes. Nevertheless, the correlation between the mechanical properties of the membrane and antimicrobial peptide potency has not been considered according to the importance it deserves. The relevance of these mechanical properties in membrane deformation due to peptide insertion is reviewed here for different types of pores in order to elucidate if indeed membrane composition affects antimicrobial peptide activity by modulation of the mechanical properties of the membrane. This would also provide a better understanding of the mechanisms used by bacteria to overcome antimicrobial peptide activity.

  18. Structure and mechanism of action of the antimicrobial peptide piscidin.

    PubMed

    Campagna, Sylvie; Saint, Nathalie; Molle, Gérard; Aumelas, André

    2007-02-20

    Piscidin, an antibacterial peptide isolated from the mast cells of striped bass, has potent antimicrobial activity against a broad spectrum of pathogens in vitro. We investigated the mechanism of action of this 22-residue cationic peptide by carrying out structural studies and electrophysiological experiments in lipid bilayers. Circular dichroism experiments showed that piscidin was unstructured in water but had a high alpha-helix content in dodecylphosphocholine (DPC) micelles. 1H NMR data in water and TFE confirmed these results and demonstrated that the segment of residues 8-17 adopted an alpha-helical structure in a micellar environment. This molecule has a marked amphipathic character, due to well-defined hydrophobic and hydrophilic sectors. This structure is similar to those determined for other cationic peptides involved in permeabilization of the bacterial membrane. Multichannel experiments with piscidin incorporated into azolectin planar bilayers gave reproducible I-V curves at various peptide concentrations and unambiguously showed that this peptide permeabilized the membrane. This pore forming activity was confirmed by single-channel experiments, with well-defined ion channels obtained at different voltages. The characteristics of the ion channels (voltage dependence, only one or two states of conductance) clearly suggest that piscidin is more likely to permeabilize the membrane by toroidal pore formation rather than via the "barrel-stave" mechanism.

  19. Protocols for Studying Antimicrobial Peptides (AMPs) as Anticancer Agents.

    PubMed

    Madera, Laurence; Hoskin, David W

    2017-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are a class of small cationic peptides that are important for host defense. In a manner that is similar to AMP-mediated destruction of microbial pathogens, certain AMPs can physically associate with the anionic lipid membrane components of cancer cells, resulting in destabilization of the lipid membrane and subsequent peptide binding to intracellular targets, which ultimately leads to the death of the cancer cell. In comparison, normal healthy cells possess a neutral membrane charge and are therefore less affected by AMPs. Based on the selective cytotoxicity of certain AMPs for cancer cells, these peptides represent a potential reservoir of novel anticancer therapeutic agents. The development and improvement of AMPs as anticancer agents requires appropriate methods for determining the effects of these peptides on the viability and function of cancer cells. In this chapter, we describe methods to assess the ability of AMPs to cause cell membrane damage (measured by propidium iodide uptake), apoptosis and/or necrosis (measured by annexin V-FLUOS/propidium iodide staining), and mitochondrial membrane destabilization (measured by 3,3'-dihexyloxacarbocyanine iodide staining), as well as reduced motility (measured by a migration and invasion assay) of cancer cells growing in suspension or as monolayers. We also describe a tubule-forming assay that can be used to assess the effect of AMPs on angiogenesis.

  20. Bacterial Evasion of Host Antimicrobial Peptide Defenses

    PubMed Central

    Cole, Jason N.; Nizet, Victor

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), also known as host defense peptides, are small naturally occurring microbicidal molecules produced by the host innate immune response that function as a first line of defense to kill pathogenic microorganisms by inducing deleterious cell membrane damage. AMPs also possess signaling and chemoattractant activities and can modulate the innate immune response to enhance protective immunity or suppress inflammation. Human pathogens have evolved defense molecules and strategies to counter and survive the AMPs released by host immune cells such as neutrophils and macrophages. Here, we review the various mechanisms used by human bacterial pathogens to resist AMP-mediated killing, including surface charge modification, active efflux, alteration of membrane fluidity, inactivation by proteolytic digestion, and entrapment by surface proteins and polysaccharides. Enhanced understanding of AMP resistance at the molecular level may offer insight into the mechanisms of bacterial pathogenesis and augment the discovery of novel therapeutic targets and drug design for the treatment of recalcitrant multidrug-resistant bacterial infections. PMID:26999396

  1. Three new antimicrobial peptides from the scorpion Pandinus imperator.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Xian-Chun; Zhou, Lingli; Shi, Wanxia; Luo, Xuesong; Zhang, Lei; Nie, Yao; Wang, Jinwei; Wu, Shifen; Cao, Bin; Cao, Hanjun

    2013-07-01

    Three novel cysteine-free venom peptides, which were referred to as Pantinin-1, Pantinin-2 and Pantinin-3, respectively, have been identified from the scorpion Pandinus imperator by cDNA cloning strategy. The precursor of each peptide consists of a signal peptide, a mature peptide with no disulfide bridges, and an acidic propeptide with a typical processing signal. Each of the three peptides is an α-helical, cationic and amphipathic molecule with 13 or 14 amino acid residues. Their amino acid sequences are homologous to those of some 13-mer antimicrobial peptides isolated from scorpions. Antimicrobial assay showed that all the three peptides possess relatively strong activities against Gram-positive bacteria and a fungus, but have very weak antimicrobial activities against Gram-negative bacteria. Toxicity assay showed that the three peptides exhibit very low or mild hemolytic activities against human red blood cells. It is interesting to see that Pantinin-3 is able to potently inhibit the growth of vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus (VRE) S13, a pathogen that can cause a number of human infections; this suggests that Pantinin-3 has great potential to be applied in the treatment of VRE infections. Our findings gain new insights into the structure/function relationships of the small linear cationic antimicrobial peptides from scorpions, and provide new templates for designing of antimicrobial agents targeting antibiotic-resistant pathogenic bacteria.

  2. Probing Protein Sequences as Sources for Encrypted Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Brand, Guilherme D.; Magalhães, Mariana T. Q.; Tinoco, Maria L. P.; Aragão, Francisco J. L.; Nicoli, Jacques; Kelly, Sharon M.; Cooper, Alan; Bloch, Carlos

    2012-01-01

    Starting from the premise that a wealth of potentially biologically active peptides may lurk within proteins, we describe here a methodology to identify putative antimicrobial peptides encrypted in protein sequences. Candidate peptides were identified using a new screening procedure based on physicochemical criteria to reveal matching peptides within protein databases. Fifteen such peptides, along with a range of natural antimicrobial peptides, were examined using DSC and CD to characterize their interaction with phospholipid membranes. Principal component analysis of DSC data shows that the investigated peptides group according to their effects on the main phase transition of phospholipid vesicles, and that these effects correlate both to antimicrobial activity and to the changes in peptide secondary structure. Consequently, we have been able to identify novel antimicrobial peptides from larger proteins not hitherto associated with such activity, mimicking endogenous and/or exogenous microorganism enzymatic processing of parent proteins to smaller bioactive molecules. A biotechnological application for this methodology is explored. Soybean (Glycine max) plants, transformed to include a putative antimicrobial protein fragment encoded in its own genome were tested for tolerance against Phakopsora pachyrhizi, the causative agent of the Asian soybean rust. This procedure may represent an inventive alternative to the transgenic technology, since the genetic material to be used belongs to the host organism and not to exogenous sources. PMID:23029273

  3. Probing protein sequences as sources for encrypted antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Brand, Guilherme D; Magalhães, Mariana T Q; Tinoco, Maria L P; Aragão, Francisco J L; Nicoli, Jacques; Kelly, Sharon M; Cooper, Alan; Bloch, Carlos

    2012-01-01

    Starting from the premise that a wealth of potentially biologically active peptides may lurk within proteins, we describe here a methodology to identify putative antimicrobial peptides encrypted in protein sequences. Candidate peptides were identified using a new screening procedure based on physicochemical criteria to reveal matching peptides within protein databases. Fifteen such peptides, along with a range of natural antimicrobial peptides, were examined using DSC and CD to characterize their interaction with phospholipid membranes. Principal component analysis of DSC data shows that the investigated peptides group according to their effects on the main phase transition of phospholipid vesicles, and that these effects correlate both to antimicrobial activity and to the changes in peptide secondary structure. Consequently, we have been able to identify novel antimicrobial peptides from larger proteins not hitherto associated with such activity, mimicking endogenous and/or exogenous microorganism enzymatic processing of parent proteins to smaller bioactive molecules. A biotechnological application for this methodology is explored. Soybean (Glycine max) plants, transformed to include a putative antimicrobial protein fragment encoded in its own genome were tested for tolerance against Phakopsora pachyrhizi, the causative agent of the Asian soybean rust. This procedure may represent an inventive alternative to the transgenic technology, since the genetic material to be used belongs to the host organism and not to exogenous sources.

  4. Screening And Optimizing Antimicrobial Peptides By Using SPOT-Synthesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    López-Pérez, Paula M.; Grimsey, Elizabeth; Bourne, Luc; Mikut, Ralf; Hilpert, Kai

    2017-04-01

    Peptide arrays on cellulose are a powerful tool to investigate peptide interactions with a number of different molecules, for examples antibodies, receptors or enzymes. Such peptide arrays can also be used to study interactions with whole cells. In this review, we focus on the interaction of small antimicrobial peptides with bacteria. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) can kill multidrug-resistant (MDR) human pathogenic bacteria and therefore could be next generation antibiotics targeting MDR bacteria. We describe the screen and the result of different optimization strategies of peptides cleaved from the membrane. In addition, screening of antibacterial activity of peptides that are tethered to the surface is discussed. Surface-active peptides can be used to protect surfaces from bacterial infections, for example implants.

  5. Screening and Optimizing Antimicrobial Peptides by Using SPOT-Synthesis

    PubMed Central

    López-Pérez, Paula M.; Grimsey, Elizabeth; Bourne, Luc; Mikut, Ralf; Hilpert, Kai

    2017-01-01

    Peptide arrays on cellulose are a powerful tool to investigate peptide interactions with a number of different molecules, for examples antibodies, receptors or enzymes. Such peptide arrays can also be used to study interactions with whole cells. In this review, we focus on the interaction of small antimicrobial peptides with bacteria. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) can kill multidrug-resistant (MDR) human pathogenic bacteria and therefore could be next generation antibiotics targeting MDR bacteria. We describe the screen and the result of different optimization strategies of peptides cleaved from the membrane. In addition, screening of antibacterial activity of peptides that are tethered to the surface is discussed. Surface-active peptides can be used to protect surfaces from bacterial infections, for example implants. PMID:28447030

  6. Simultaneous Antibiofilm and Antiviral Activities of an Engineered Antimicrobial Peptide during Virus-Bacterium Coinfection

    PubMed Central

    Melvin, Jeffrey A.; Lashua, Lauren P.; Kiedrowski, Megan R.; Yang, Guanyi; Deslouches, Berthony; Montelaro, Ronald C.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Antimicrobial-resistant infections are an urgent public health threat, and development of novel antimicrobial therapies has been painstakingly slow. Polymicrobial infections are increasingly recognized as a significant source of severe disease and also contribute to reduced susceptibility to antimicrobials. Chronic infections also are characterized by their ability to resist clearance, which is commonly linked to the development of biofilms that are notorious for antimicrobial resistance. The use of engineered cationic antimicrobial peptides (eCAPs) is attractive due to the slow development of resistance to these fast-acting antimicrobials and their ability to kill multidrug-resistant clinical isolates, key elements for the success of novel antimicrobial agents. Here, we tested the ability of an eCAP, WLBU2, to disrupt recalcitrant Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilms. WLBU2 was capable of significantly reducing biomass and viability of P. aeruginosa biofilms formed on airway epithelium and maintained activity during viral coinfection, a condition that confers extraordinary levels of antibiotic resistance. Biofilm disruption was achieved in short treatment times by permeabilization of bacterial membranes. Additionally, we observed simultaneous reduction of infectivity of the viral pathogen respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). WLBU2 is notable for its ability to maintain activity across a broad range of physiological conditions and showed negligible toxicity toward the airway epithelium, expanding its potential applications as an antimicrobial therapeutic. IMPORTANCE Antimicrobial-resistant infections are an urgent public health threat, making development of novel antimicrobials able to effectively treat these infections extremely important. Chronic and polymicrobial infections further complicate antimicrobial therapy, often through the development of microbial biofilms. Here, we describe the ability of an engineered antimicrobial peptide to disrupt biofilms

  7. Self-assembled cationic peptide nanoparticles as an efficient antimicrobial agent

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Lihong; Xu, Kaijin; Wang, Huaying; Jeremy Tan, P. K.; Fan, Weimin; Venkatraman, Subbu S.; Li, Lanjuan; Yang, Yi-Yan

    2009-07-01

    Antimicrobial cationic peptides are of interest because they can combat multi-drug-resistant microbes. Most peptides form α-helices or β-sheet-like structures that can insert into and subsequently disintegrate negatively charged bacterial cell surfaces. Here, we show that a novel class of core-shell nanoparticles formed by self-assembly of an amphiphilic peptide have strong antimicrobial properties against a range of bacteria, yeasts and fungi. The nanoparticles show a high therapeutic index against Staphylococcus aureus infection in mice and are more potent than their unassembled peptide counterparts. Using Staphylococcus aureus-infected meningitis rabbits, we show that the nanoparticles can cross the blood-brain barrier and suppress bacterial growth in infected brains. Taken together, these nanoparticles are promising antimicrobial agents that can be used to treat brain infections and other infectious diseases.

  8. Antimicrobial and Immunomodulatory Activities of PR-39 Derived Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Veldhuizen, Edwin J. A.; Schneider, Viktoria A. F.; Agustiandari, Herfita; van Dijk, Albert; Tjeerdsma-van Bokhoven, Johanna L. M.; Bikker, Floris J.; Haagsman, Henk P.

    2014-01-01

    The porcine cathelicidin PR-39 is a host defence peptide that plays a pivotal role in the innate immune defence of the pig against infections. Besides direct antimicrobial activity, it is involved in immunomodulation, wound healing and several other biological processes. In this study, the antimicrobial- and immunomodulatory activity of PR-39, and N- and C-terminal derivatives of PR-39 were tested. PR-39 exhibited an unexpected broad antimicrobial spectrum including several Gram positive strains such as Bacillus globigii and Enterococcus faecalis. Of organisms tested, only Staphylococcus aureus was insensitive to PR-39. Truncation of PR-39 down to 15 (N-terminal) amino acids did not lead to major loss of activity, while peptides corresponding to the C-terminal part of PR-39 were hampered in their antimicrobial activity. However, shorter peptides were all much more sensitive to inhibition by salt. Active peptides induced ATP leakage and loss of membrane potential in Bacillus globigii and Escherichia coli, indicating a lytic mechanism of action for these peptides. Finally, only the mature peptide was able to induce IL-8 production in porcine macrophages, but some shorter peptides also had an effect on TNF-α production showing differential regulation of cytokine induction by PR-39 derived peptides. None of the active peptides showed high cytotoxicity highlighting the potential of these peptides for use as an alternative to antibiotics. PMID:24755622

  9. Ileal antimicrobial peptide expression is dysregulated in old age.

    PubMed

    Tremblay, Sarah; Côté, Nathalie Marie Louise; Grenier, Guillaume; Duclos-Lasnier, Gabriella; Fortier, Louis-Charles; Ilangumaran, Subburaj; Menendez, Alfredo

    2017-01-01

    In an effort to understand the mechanisms underlying the high prevalence of gastrointestinal tract disorders in old age, we investigated the expression of intestinal antimicrobial peptides in the terminal small intestine of aged mice. Our results show that old mice have reduced transcript levels of ileal α-defensins and lysozyme, two important types of intestinal antimicrobial peptides produced by Paneth cells. In contrast, expression of the C-type lectins Reg3b and Reg3g, as well as β-defensin 1, angiogenin 4 and Relmb, which are made by several epithelial cell types, was significantly upregulated in aged animals suggesting an ongoing response to epithelial distress. Those changes in antimicrobial peptide gene expression associated with histological damage of the ileal epithelium and subtle modifications in the composition of the commensal microbiota. Our findings suggest that dysregulation of antimicrobial peptides expression is a feature of homeostasis disruption in the aged intestine and may contribute to geriatric gastrointestinal dysfunction.

  10. The role of antimicrobial peptides in chronic inflammatory skin diseases

    PubMed Central

    Majewski, Sławomir

    2016-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are effector molecules of the innate immune system of the skin. They present an activity against a broad spectrum of Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria as well as some fungi, parasites and enveloped viruses. Several inflammatory skin diseases including psoriasis, atopic dermatitis, acne vulgaris and rosacea are characterized by a dysregulated expression of AMPs. Antimicrobial peptides are excessively produced in lesional psoriatic scales or rosacea in contrast to the atopic skin that shows lower AMP levels when compared with psoriasis. The importance of the AMPs contribution to host immunity is indisputable as alterations in the antimicrobial peptide expression have been associated with various pathologic processes. This review discusses the biology and clinical relevance of antimicrobial peptides expressed in the skin and their role in the pathogenesis of inflammatory skin diseases. PMID:26985172

  11. De-Novo Design of Antimicrobial Peptides for Plant Protection

    PubMed Central

    Zeitler, Benjamin; Herrera Diaz, Areli; Dangel, Alexandra; Thellmann, Martha; Meyer, Helge; Sattler, Michael; Lindermayr, Christian

    2013-01-01

    This work describes the de-novo design of peptides that inhibit a broad range of plant pathogens. Four structurally different groups of peptides were developed that differ in size and position of their charged and hydrophobic clusters and were assayed for their ability to inhibit bacterial growth and fungal spore germination. Several peptides are highly active at concentrations between 0,1 and 1 µg/ml against plant pathogenic bacteria, such as Pseudomonas syringae, Pectobacterium carotovorum, and Xanthomonas vesicatoria. Importantly, no hemolytic activity could be detected for these peptides at concentrations up to 200 µg/ml. Moreover, the peptides are also active after spraying on the plant surface demonstrating a possible way of application. In sum, our designed peptides represent new antimicrobial agents and with the increasing demand for antimicrobial compounds for production of “healthy” food, these peptides might serve as templates for novel antibacterial and antifungal agents. PMID:23951222

  12. De-novo design of antimicrobial peptides for plant protection.

    PubMed

    Zeitler, Benjamin; Herrera Diaz, Areli; Dangel, Alexandra; Thellmann, Martha; Meyer, Helge; Sattler, Michael; Lindermayr, Christian

    2013-01-01

    This work describes the de-novo design of peptides that inhibit a broad range of plant pathogens. Four structurally different groups of peptides were developed that differ in size and position of their charged and hydrophobic clusters and were assayed for their ability to inhibit bacterial growth and fungal spore germination. Several peptides are highly active at concentrations between 0,1 and 1 µg/ml against plant pathogenic bacteria, such as Pseudomonas syringae, Pectobacterium carotovorum, and Xanthomonas vesicatoria. Importantly, no hemolytic activity could be detected for these peptides at concentrations up to 200 µg/ml. Moreover, the peptides are also active after spraying on the plant surface demonstrating a possible way of application. In sum, our designed peptides represent new antimicrobial agents and with the increasing demand for antimicrobial compounds for production of "healthy" food, these peptides might serve as templates for novel antibacterial and antifungal agents.

  13. Influence of the Length and Charge on the Activity of α-Helical Amphipathic Antimicrobial Peptides.

    PubMed

    Gagnon, Marie-Claude; Strandberg, Erik; Grau-Campistany, Ariadna; Wadhwani, Parvesh; Reichert, Johannes; Bürck, Jochen; Rabanal, Francesc; Auger, Michèle; Paquin, Jean-François; Ulrich, Anne S

    2017-03-21

    Hydrophobic mismatch is important for pore-forming amphipathic antimicrobial peptides, as demonstrated recently [Grau-Campistany, A., et al. (2015) Sci. Rep. 5, 9388]. A series of different length peptides have been generated with the heptameric repeat sequence KIAGKIA, called KIA peptides, and it was found that only those helices sufficiently long to span the hydrophobic thickness of the membrane could induce leakage in lipid vesicles; there was also a clear length dependence of the antimicrobial and hemolytic activities. For the original KIA sequences, the cationic charge increased with peptide length. The goal of this work is to examine whether the charge also has an effect on activity; hence, we constructed two further series of peptides with a sequence similar to those of the KIA peptides, but with a constant charge of +7 for all lengths from 14 to 28 amino acids. For both of these new series, a clear length dependence similar to that of KIA peptides was observed, indicating that charge has only a minor influence. Both series also showed a distinct threshold length for peptides to be active, which correlates directly with the thickness of the membrane. Among the longer peptides, the new series showed activities only slightly lower than those of the original KIA peptides of the same length that had a higher charge. Shorter peptides, in which Gly was replaced with Lys, showed activities similar to those of KIA peptides of the same length, but peptides in which Ile was replaced with Lys lost their helicity and were less active.

  14. Alternative mechanisms of action of cationic antimicrobial peptides on bacteria.

    PubMed

    Hale, John D F; Hancock, Robert E W

    2007-12-01

    Cationic antimicrobial peptides are a novel type of antibiotic offering much potential in the treatment of microbial-related diseases. They offer many advantages for commercial development, including a broad spectrum of action and modest size. However, despite the identification or synthetic production of thousands of such peptides, the mode of action remains elusive, except for a few examples. While the dogma for the mechanism of action of antimicrobial peptides against bacteria is believed to be through pore formation or membrane barrier disruption, some peptides clearly act differently and other intracellular target sites have been identified. This article presents an updated review of how cationic antimicrobial peptides are able to affect bacterial killing, with a focus on internal targets.

  15. Antimicrobial Peptide Evolution in the Asiatic Honey Bee Apis cerana

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Peng; Shi, Min; Chen, Xue-xin

    2009-01-01

    The Asiatic honeybee, Apis cerana Fabricius, is an important honeybee species in Asian countries. It is still found in the wild, but is also one of the few bee species that can be domesticated. It has acquired some genetic advantages and significantly different biological characteristics compared with other Apis species. However, it has been less studied, and over the past two decades, has become a threatened species in China. We designed primers for the sequences of the four antimicrobial peptide cDNA gene families (abaecin, defensin, apidaecin, and hymenoptaecin) of the Western honeybee, Apis mellifera L. and identified all the antimicrobial peptide cDNA genes in the Asiatic honeybee for the first time. All the sequences were amplified by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). In all, 29 different defensin cDNA genes coding 7 different defensin peptides, 11 different abaecin cDNA genes coding 2 different abaecin peptides, 13 different apidaecin cDNA genes coding 4 apidaecin peptides and 34 different hymenoptaecin cDNA genes coding 13 different hymenoptaecin peptides were cloned and identified from the Asiatic honeybee adult workers. Detailed comparison of these four antimicrobial peptide gene families with those of the Western honeybee revealed that there are many similarities in the quantity and amino acid components of peptides in the abaecin, defensin and apidaecin families, while many more hymenoptaecin peptides are found in the Asiatic honeybee than those in the Western honeybee (13 versus 1). The results indicated that the Asiatic honeybee adult generated more variable antimicrobial peptides, especially hymenoptaecin peptides than the Western honeybee when stimulated by pathogens or injury. This suggests that, compared to the Western honeybee that has a longer history of domestication, selection on the Asiatic honeybee has favored the generation of more variable antimicrobial peptides as protection against pathogens. PMID:19156201

  16. Comparative surface antimicrobial properties of synthetic biocides and novel human apolipoprotein E derived antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Forbes, Sarah; McBain, Andrew J; Felton-Smith, Susan; Jowitt, Thomas A; Birchenough, Holly L; Dobson, Curtis B

    2013-07-01

    Medical device infection remains a major clinical concern. Biocidal compounds have been incorporated into medical device materials ideally to inhibit bacterial colonisation whilst exhibiting relatively low cytotoxicity. We compared the antibacterial activity, anti-biofilm efficacy and cytotoxicity of a novel peptide derivative of human apolipoprotein E (apoEdpL-W) to that of commonly used biocides, before and after coating onto a range of standard polymers. Since the antimicrobial function of most biocides frequently involves associations with cellular membranes, we have also studied the detailed interactions of the test antimicrobials with phospholipid bilayers, using the quartz crystal microbalance device combined with dual-polarisation interferometry. ApoEdpL-W displayed broad-spectrum antibacterial activity and marked efficacy against nascent Staphylococcus aureus biofilms. Compounds showed better antimicrobial activity when combined with hydrogel materials than with non-porous materials. The membrane interactions of apoEdpL-W were most similar to that of PHMB, with both agents appearing to readily bind and insert into lipid bilayers, possibly forming pores. However apoEdpL-W showed lower cytotoxicity than PHMB, its efficacy was less affected by the presence of serum, and it demonstrated the highest level of biocompatibility of all the biocides, as indicated by our measurement of its antimicrobial biocompatibility index. This work shows the potential of apoEdpL-W as an effective antiseptic coating agent.

  17. Antimicrobial peptides: Possible anti-infective agents.

    PubMed

    Lakshmaiah Narayana, Jayaram; Chen, Jyh-Yih

    2015-10-01

    Multidrug-resistant bacterial, fungal, viral, and parasitic infections are major health threats. The Infectious Diseases Society of America has expressed concern on the decrease of pharmaceutical companies working on antibiotic research and development. However, small companies, along with academic research institutes, are stepping forward to develop novel therapeutic methods to overcome the present healthcare situation. Among the leading alternatives to current drugs are antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), which are abundantly distributed in nature. AMPs exhibit broad-spectrum activity against a wide variety of bacteria, fungi, viruses, and parasites, and even cancerous cells. They also show potential immunomodulatory properties, and are highly responsive to infectious agents and innate immuno-stimulatory molecules. In recent years, many AMPs have undergone or are undergoing clinical development, and a few are commercially available for topical and other applications. In this review, we outline selected anion and cationic AMPs which are at various stages of development, from preliminary analysis to clinical drug development. Moreover, we also consider current production methods and delivery tools for AMPs, which must be improved for the effective use of these agents.

  18. Use of Peptide Libraries for Identification and Optimization of Novel Antimicrobial Peptides.

    PubMed

    Ashby, Martin; Petkova, Asya; Gani, Jurnorain; Mikut, Ralf; Hilpert, Kai

    2017-01-01

    The increasing rates of resistance among bacteria and to a lesser extent fungi have resulted in an urgent need to find new molecules that hold therapeutic promise against multidrug-resistant strains. Antimicrobial peptides have proven very effective against a variety of multidrug-resistant bacteria. Additionally, the low levels of resistance reported towards these molecules are an attractive feature for antimicrobial drug development. Here we summarise information on diverse peptide libraries used to discover or to optimize antimicrobial peptides. Chemical synthesized peptide libraries, for example split and mix method, tea bag method, multi-pin method and cellulose spot method are discussed. In addition biological peptide library screening methods are summarized, like phage display, bacterial display, mRNA-display and ribosomal display. A few examples are given for small peptide libraries, which almost exclusively follow a rational design of peptides of interest rather than a combinatorial approach.

  19. Antimicrobial action of synthetic peptides towards wine spoilage yeasts.

    PubMed

    Enrique, María; Marcos, Jose F; Yuste, María; Martínez, Mireia; Vallés, Salvador; Manzanares, Paloma

    2007-09-30

    The antimicrobial action of selected short synthetic peptides against wine spoilage yeasts such as Cryptococcus albidus, Dekkera bruxellensis, Pichia membranifaciens, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Zygosaccharomyces bailii and Zygosaccharomyces bisporus has been examined. Peptides analyzed include nine sequence-related antifungal hexapeptides (PAFs) previously developed by a combinatorial approach, and two representative lactoferricin B (LfcinB)-derived peptides. Different peptides had distinct activity profiles. In vitro assays identified the peptides PAF26, PAF36, and LfcinB(17-31), as having growth inhibitory properties towards several of the yeasts at low micromolar concentrations. Z. bailii and Z. bisporus were the most sensitive yeasts. In addition to their fungistatic activity, the three peptides showed fungicidal properties towards Z. bailii, Z. bisporus, and S. cerevisiae in laboratory growth medium. Remarkably, only LfcinB(17-31) against Z. bisporus had inhibitory and fungicidal properties in wine at the concentrations assayed, showing that the antimicrobial action of each peptide is dependent on both the food matrix and the target micro-organism. Lack of fungicidal activity of peptides against Z. bailii in wine is related to the presence of salt ions other than divalent cations. On the contrary, fungicidal activity of LfcinB(17-31) towards Z. bisporus was not significantly affected by wine salts. Our data identify a bioactive peptide from natural origin with potential use against the food spoilage yeast Z. bisporus, and indicate that the application of antimicrobial peptides in wine preservation deserves further investigation.

  20. Engineered Chimeric Peptides as Antimicrobial Surface Coating Agents toward Infection-Free Implants

    PubMed Central

    Yazici, Hilal; O'Neill, Mary B.; Kacar, Turgay; Wilson, Brandon R.; Oren, E. Emre; Sarikaya, Mehmet; Tamerler, Candan

    2016-01-01

    Prevention of bacterial colonization and consequent biofilm formation remains a major challenge in implantable medical devices. Implant-associated infections are not only a major cause of implant failures but also their conventional treatment with antibiotics brings further complications due to the escalation in multidrug resistance to a variety of bacterial species. Owing to their unique properties, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have gained significant attention as effective agents to combat colonization of microorganisms. These peptides have been shown to exhibit a wide spectrum of activities with specificity to a target cell while having a low tendency for developing bacterial resistance. Engineering biomaterial surfaces that feature AMP properties, therefore, offer a promising approach to prevent implant infections. Here, we engineered a chimeric peptide with bifunctionality that both forms a robust solid-surface coating while presenting antimicrobial property. The individual domains of the chimeric peptides were evaluated for their solid-binding kinetics to titanium substrate as well as for their antimicrobial properties in solution. The antimicrobial efficacy of the chimeric peptide on the implant material was evaluated in vitro against infection by a variety of bacteria, including Streptococcus mutans, Staphylococcus. epidermidis, and Escherichia coli, which are commonly found in oral and orthopedic implant related surgeries. Our results demonstrate significant improvement in reducing bacterial colonization onto titanium surfaces below the detectable limit. Engineered chimeric peptides with freely displayed antimicrobial domains could be a potential solution for developing infection-free surfaces by engineering implant interfaces with highly reduced bacterial colonization property. PMID:26795060

  1. Engineered Chimeric Peptides as Antimicrobial Surface Coating Agents toward Infection-Free Implants.

    PubMed

    Yazici, Hilal; O'Neill, Mary B; Kacar, Turgay; Wilson, Brandon R; Oren, E Emre; Sarikaya, Mehmet; Tamerler, Candan

    2016-03-02

    Prevention of bacterial colonization and consequent biofilm formation remains a major challenge in implantable medical devices. Implant-associated infections are not only a major cause of implant failures but also their conventional treatment with antibiotics brings further complications due to the escalation in multidrug resistance to a variety of bacterial species. Owing to their unique properties, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have gained significant attention as effective agents to combat colonization of microorganisms. These peptides have been shown to exhibit a wide spectrum of activities with specificity to a target cell while having a low tendency for developing bacterial resistance. Engineering biomaterial surfaces that feature AMP properties, therefore, offer a promising approach to prevent implant infections. Here, we engineered a chimeric peptide with bifunctionality that both forms a robust solid-surface coating while presenting antimicrobial property. The individual domains of the chimeric peptides were evaluated for their solid-binding kinetics to titanium substrate as well as for their antimicrobial properties in solution. The antimicrobial efficacy of the chimeric peptide on the implant material was evaluated in vitro against infection by a variety of bacteria, including Streptococcus mutans, Staphylococcus. epidermidis, and Escherichia coli, which are commonly found in oral and orthopedic implant related surgeries. Our results demonstrate significant improvement in reducing bacterial colonization onto titanium surfaces below the detectable limit. Engineered chimeric peptides with freely displayed antimicrobial domains could be a potential solution for developing infection-free surfaces by engineering implant interfaces with highly reduced bacterial colonization property.

  2. DRAMP: a comprehensive data repository of antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Fan, Linlin; Sun, Jian; Zhou, Meifeng; Zhou, Jie; Lao, Xingzhen; Zheng, Heng; Xu, Hanmei

    2016-04-14

    The growing problem of antibiotic-resistant microorganisms results in an urgent need for substitutes to conventional antibiotics with novel modes of action and effective activities. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), produced by a wide variety of living organisms acting as a defense mechanism against invading pathogenic microbes, are considered to be such promising alternatives. AMPs display a broad spectrum of antimicrobial activity and a low propensity for developing resistance. Therefore, a thorough understanding of AMPs is essential to exploit them as antimicrobial drugs. Considering this, we developed a comprehensive user-friendly data repository of antimicrobial peptides (DRAMP), which holds 17349 antimicrobial sequences, including 4571 general AMPs, 12704 patented sequences and 74 peptides in drug development. Entries in the database have detailed annotations, especially detailed antimicrobial activity data (shown as target organism with MIC value) and structure information. Annotations also include accession numbers crosslinking to Pubmed, Swiss-prot and Protein Data Bank (PDB). The website of the database comes with easy-to-operate browsing as well as searching with sorting and filtering functionalities. Several useful sequence analysis tools are provided, including similarity search, sequence alignment and conserved domain search (CD-Search). DRAMP should be a useful resource for the development of novel antimicrobial peptide drugs.

  3. DRAMP: a comprehensive data repository of antimicrobial peptides

    PubMed Central

    Fan, Linlin; Sun, Jian; Zhou, Meifeng; Zhou, Jie; Lao, Xingzhen; Zheng, Heng; Xu, Hanmei

    2016-01-01

    The growing problem of antibiotic-resistant microorganisms results in an urgent need for substitutes to conventional antibiotics with novel modes of action and effective activities. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), produced by a wide variety of living organisms acting as a defense mechanism against invading pathogenic microbes, are considered to be such promising alternatives. AMPs display a broad spectrum of antimicrobial activity and a low propensity for developing resistance. Therefore, a thorough understanding of AMPs is essential to exploit them as antimicrobial drugs. Considering this, we developed a comprehensive user-friendly data repository of antimicrobial peptides (DRAMP), which holds 17349 antimicrobial sequences, including 4571 general AMPs, 12704 patented sequences and 74 peptides in drug development. Entries in the database have detailed annotations, especially detailed antimicrobial activity data (shown as target organism with MIC value) and structure information. Annotations also include accession numbers crosslinking to Pubmed, Swiss-prot and Protein Data Bank (PDB). The website of the database comes with easy-to-operate browsing as well as searching with sorting and filtering functionalities. Several useful sequence analysis tools are provided, including similarity search, sequence alignment and conserved domain search (CD-Search). DRAMP should be a useful resource for the development of novel antimicrobial peptide drugs. PMID:27075512

  4. Free Energies of Molecular Bound States in Lipid Bilayers: Lethal Concentrations of Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Huey W.

    2009-01-01

    Abstract The lipid matrix, or the lipid bilayer, of cell membranes is a natural binding site for amphipathic molecules, including antimicrobial peptides, pore-forming proteins, and many drugs. The unique property of pore-forming antimicrobial peptides is that they exhibit a threshold concentration (called the lethal concentration or the minimum inhibitory concentration) for activity, below which no effect is seen. Without this property, antimicrobial peptides would not be effective self-defense weapons, because they would have harmed all cells at any concentration. The question is what gives rise to this unique property? This study provides a free energy description for the origin of a threshold concentration. The same free energy applied differently also explains the binding of drugs that shows no threshold concentrations. The idea is compared with theories of micellar solutions that require a large oligomer size (n ⪞ 15) to achieve a threshold concentration. The elasticity of lipid bilayers makes the phenomena in membranes different. The majority of antimicrobial peptides have a large negative binding energy to the bilayer interface, but the binding causes an expansion in the membrane area, or equivalently a thinning in the membrane thickness. This elastic energy of membrane thinning elevates the energy level of interfacial binding with the peptide concentration, hence gives rise to a threshold concentration for forming pores containing as few as four peptides. PMID:19383470

  5. Archetypal tryptophan-rich antimicrobial peptides: properties and applications.

    PubMed

    Shagaghi, Nadin; Palombo, Enzo A; Clayton, Andrew H A; Bhave, Mrinal

    2016-02-01

    Drug-resistant microorganisms ('superbugs') present a serious challenge to the success of antimicrobial treatments. Subsequently, there is a crucial need for novel bio-control agents. Many antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) show a broad-spectrum activity against bacteria, fungi or viruses and are strong candidates to complement or substitute current antimicrobial agents. Some AMPs are also effective against protozoa or cancer cells. The tryptophan (Trp)-rich peptides (TRPs) are a subset of AMPs that display potent antimicrobial activity, credited to the unique biochemical properties of tryptophan that allow it to insert into biological membranes. Further, many Trp-rich AMPs cross bacterial membranes without compromising their integrity and act intracellularly, suggesting interactions with nucleic acids and enzymes. In this work, we overview some archetypal TRPs derived from natural sources, i.e., indolicidin, tritrpticin and lactoferricin, summarising their biochemical properties, structures, antimicrobial activities, mechanistic studies and potential applications.

  6. Measuring antimicrobial peptide activity on epithelial surfaces in cell culture

    PubMed Central

    Diamond, Gill; Yim, Sunghan; Rigo, Isaura; McMahon, Laura

    2009-01-01

    To more accurately assess the activity and role of epithelial-cell derived antimicrobial peptides in their native settings, it is essential to perform assays at the surfaces under relevant conditions. In order to carry this out, we utilize 3-dimensional cultures of airway and gingival epithelium, which are grown at an air-liquid interface. Under these conditions, the cultures can be subjected to challenge with a variety of factors known to cause an increase in antimicrobial peptide gene expression. The functional relevance of this induction can then be assessed by quantifying antibacterial activity either directly on the surface of the cells or using the fluid secreted onto the apical surface of the cultures. The relative contribution of the peptides can also be measured by pre-incubation of the secreted fluid with specific inhibitory antibodies. Thus, a relatively inexpensive in vitro model can be used to evaluate the role of antimicrobial peptides in mucosal epithelium. PMID:20094876

  7. Nanomechanical Response of Bacterial Cells to Cationic Antimicrobial Peptides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, Shun; Walters, Grant; Parg, Richard; Dutcher, John

    2014-03-01

    The effectiveness of antimicrobial compounds can be easily screened, however their mechanism of action is much more difficult to determine. Many compounds act by compromising the mechanical integrity of the bacterial cell envelope, and our study introduces an atomic force microscopy (AFM)-based creep deformation technique to evaluate changes in the time-dependent mechanical properties of Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1 bacterial cells upon exposure to two different but structurally related antimicrobial peptides: polymyxin B and polymyxin B nonapeptide. We observed a distinctive signature for the loss of integrity of the bacterial cell envelope following exposure to the peptides. Measurements performed before and after exposure, as well as time-resolved measurements and those performed at different concentrations, revealed large changes to the viscoelastic parameters that are consistent with differences in the membrane permeabilizing effects of the peptides. The AFM creep deformation measurement provides new, unique insight into the kinetics and mechanism of action of antimicrobial peptides on bacteria.

  8. Bionano Interaction Study on Antimicrobial Star-Shaped Peptide Polymer Nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Lam, Shu J; Wong, Edgar H H; O'Brien-Simpson, Neil M; Pantarat, Namfon; Blencowe, Anton; Reynolds, Eric C; Qiao, Greg G

    2016-12-14

    'Structurally nanoengineered antimicrobial peptide polymers' (SNAPPs), in the form of star-shaped peptide polymer nanoparticles, have been recently demonstrated as a new class of antimicrobial agents with superior in vitro and in vivo efficacy against Gram-negative pathogens, including multidrug-resistant species. Herein, we present a detailed bionano interaction study on SNAPPs by assessing their antimicrobial activities against several Gram-negative bacteria in complex biological matrices. Simulated body fluid and animal serum were used as test media to reveal factors that influence the antimicrobial efficacy of SNAPPs. With the exception of Acinetobacter baumannii, the presence of divalent cations at physiological concentrations reduced the antimicrobial efficacy of SNAPPs from minimum inhibitory concentrations (MICs) within the nanomolar range (40-300 nM) against Escherichia coli, Pseudomanas aeruginosa, and Klebsiella pneumoniae to 0.6-4.7 μM. By using E. coli as a representative bacterial species, we demonstrated that the reduction in activity was due to a decrease in the ability of SNAPPs to cause outer and inner membrane disruption. This effect could be reversed through coadministration with a chelating agent. Interestingly, the potency of SNAPPs against A. baumannii was retained even under high salt concentrations. The presence of serum proteins was also found to affect the interaction of SNAPPs with bacterial membranes, possibly through intermolecular binding. Collectively, this study highlights the need to consider the possible interactions of (bio)molecules present in vivo with any new antimicrobial agent under development. We also demonstrate that outer membrane disruption/destabilization is an important but hitherto under-recognized target for the antimicrobial action of peptide-based agents, such as antimicrobial peptides (AMPs). Overall, the findings presented herein could aid in the design of more efficient peptide-based antimicrobial agents with

  9. Antibiotic gold: tethering of antimicrobial peptides to gold nanoparticles maintains conformational flexibility of peptides and improves trypsin susceptibility.

    PubMed

    Wadhwani, Parvesh; Heidenreich, Nico; Podeyn, Benjamin; Bürck, Jochen; Ulrich, Anne S

    2017-03-09

    Peptide-coated nanoparticles are valuable tools for diverse biological applications, such as drug delivery, molecular recognition, and antimicrobial action. The functionalization of pre-fabricated nanoparticles with free peptides in solution is inefficient either due to aggregation of the particles or due to the poor ligand exchange reaction. Here, we present a one-pot synthesis for preparing gold nanoparticles with a homogeneous distribution that are covered in situ with cationic peptides in a site-selective manner via Cys-residue at the N-terminus. Five representative peptides were selected, which are known to perturb cellular membranes and exert their antimicrobial and/or cell penetrating activity by folding into amphiphilic α-helical structures. When tethered to the nanoparticles at a single site, all peptides were found to switch their conformation from unordered state (in aqueous buffers) to their functionally relevant α-helical conformation in the presence of model membranes, as shown by circular dichroism spectroscopy. The conjugated peptides also maintained the same antibacterial activity as in the free form. Most importantly, when tethered to the gold nanoparticles the peptides showed an enormous increase in stability against trypsin digestion compared to the free forms, leading to a dramatic improvement of their lifetimes and activities. These findings suggest that site-selective surface tethering of peptides to gold nanoparticles has several advantages: (i) it does not prevent the peptides from folding into their biologically active conformation, (ii) such conjugation protects the peptides against protease digestion, and (iii) this way it is possible to prepare stable, water soluble antimicrobial nanoparticles as promising antibacterial agents.

  10. Antimicrobial peptides from skin secretions of Hypsiboas pulchellus (Anura: Hylidae).

    PubMed

    Siano, Alvaro; Húmpola, María Verónica; de Oliveira, Eliandre; Albericio, Fernando; Simonetta, Arturo C; Lajmanovich, Rafael; Tonarelli, Georgina G

    2014-04-25

    The skin of many amphibians produces a large repertoire of antimicrobial peptides that are crucial in the first line of defense against microbial invasion. Despite the immense richness of wild amphibians in Argentina, knowledge about peptides with antimicrobial properties is limited to a few species. Here we used LC-MS-MS to analyze samples of Hypsiboas pulchellus skin with the aim to identify antimicrobial peptides in the mass range of 1000 to 2000 Da. Twenty-three novel sequences were identified by MS, three of which were selected for chemical synthesis and further studies. The three synthetic peptides, named P1-Hp-1971, P2-Hp-1935, and P3-Hp-1891, inhibited the growth of two ATCC strains: Escherichia coli (MIC: 16, 33, and 17 μM, respectively) and Staphylococcus aureus (MIC: 8, 66, and 17 μM, respectively). P1-Hp-1971 and P3-Hp-1891 were the most active peptides. P1-Hp-1971, which showed the highest therapeutic indices (40 for E. coli and 80 for S. aureus), is a proline-glycine-rich peptide with a highly unordered structure, while P3-Hp-1891 adopts an amphipathic α-helical structure in the presence of 2,2,2-trifluoroethanol and anionic liposomes. This is the first peptidomic study of Hypsiboas pulchellus skin secretions to allow the identification of antimicrobial peptides.

  11. Evolution of Antimicrobial Peptides to Self-Assembled Peptides for Biomaterial Applications

    PubMed Central

    McCloskey, Alice P.; Gilmore, Brendan F.; Laverty, Garry

    2014-01-01

    Biomaterial-related infections are a persistent burden on patient health, recovery, mortality and healthcare budgets. Self-assembled antimicrobial peptides have evolved from the area of antimicrobial peptides. Peptides serve as important weapons in nature, and increasingly medicine, for combating microbial infection and biofilms. Self-assembled peptides harness a “bottom-up” approach, whereby the primary peptide sequence may be modified with natural and unnatural amino acids to produce an inherently antimicrobial hydrogel. Gelation may be tailored to occur in the presence of physiological and infective indicators (e.g. pH, enzymes) and therefore allow local, targeted antimicrobial therapy at the site of infection. Peptides demonstrate inherent biocompatibility, antimicrobial activity, biodegradability and numerous functional groups. They are therefore prime candidates for the production of polymeric molecules that have the potential to be conjugated to biomaterials with precision. Non-native chemistries and functional groups are easily incorporated into the peptide backbone allowing peptide hydrogels to be tailored to specific functional requirements. This article reviews an area of increasing interest, namely self-assembled peptides and their potential therapeutic applications as innovative hydrogels and biomaterials in the prevention of biofilm-related infection. PMID:25436505

  12. Role of Arginine and Lysine in the Antimicrobial Mechanism of Histone-derived Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Cutrona, Kara J.; Kaufman, Bethany A.; Figueroa, Dania M.; Elmore, Donald E.

    2015-01-01

    Translocation of cell-penetrating peptides is often promoted by increased content of arginine or other guanidinum groups. However, relatively little research has considered the role of these functional groups on antimicrobial peptide activity. This study compared the activity of three histone-derived antimicrobial peptides—buforin II, DesHDAP1, and parasin— with variants that contain only lysine or arginine cationic residues. These peptides operate via different mechanisms as parasin causes membrane permeabilization while buforin II and DesHDAP1 translocate into bacteria. For all peptides, antibacterial activity increased with increased arginine content. Higher arginine content increased permeabilization for parasin while it improved translocation for buforin II and DesHDAP1. These observations provide insight into the relative importance of arginine and lysine in these antimicrobial peptides. PMID:26555191

  13. Chlamydia-secreted protease CPAF degrades host antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Tang, Lingli; Chen, Jianlin; Zhou, Zhiguang; Yu, Ping; Yang, Zhangsheng; Zhong, Guangming

    2015-06-01

    Chlamydia trachomatis infection in the lower genital tract, if untreated, can ascend to the upper genital tract, potentially leading to complications such as tubal factor infertility. The ascension involves cell-to-cell spreading, which may require C. trachomatis organisms to overcome mucosal extracellular effectors such as antimicrobial peptides. We found that among the 8 antimicrobial peptides tested, the cathelicidin LL-37 that is produced by both urogenital epithelial cells and the recruited neutrophils possessed a most potent antichlamydial activity. Interestingly, this antichlamydial activity was completely inhibited by CPAF, a C. trachomatis-secreted serine protease. The inhibition was dependent on CPAF's proteolytic activity. CPAF selectively degraded LL-37 and other antimicrobial peptides with an antichlamydial activity. CPAF is known to secrete into and accumulate in the infected host cell cytoplasm at the late stage of chlamydial intracellular growth and may be released to confront the extracellular antimicrobial peptides before the intra-inclusion organisms are exposed to extracellular environments during host cell lysis and chlamydial spreading. Thus, the finding that CPAF selectively targets host antimicrobial peptides that possess antichlamydial activities for proteolysis suggests that CPAF may contribute to C. trachomatis pathogenicity by aiding in ascending infection.

  14. Antimicrobial polymers as synthetic mimics of host-defense peptides.

    PubMed

    Kuroda, Kenichi; Caputo, Gregory A

    2013-01-01

    Antibiotic-resistant bacteria 'superbugs' are an emerging threat to public health due to the decrease in effective antibiotics as well as the slowed pace of development of new antibiotics to replace those that become ineffective. The need for new antimicrobial agents is a well-documented issue relating to world health. Tremendous efforts have been given to developing compounds that not only show high efficacy, but also those that are less susceptible to resistance development in the bacteria. However, the development of newer, stronger antibiotics which can overcome these acquired resistances is still a scientific challenge because a new mode of antimicrobial action is likely required. To that end, amphiphilic, cationic polymers have emerged as a promising candidate for further development as an antimicrobial agent with decreased potential for resistance development. These polymers are designed to mimic naturally occurring host-defense antimicrobial peptides which act on bacterial cell walls or membranes. Antimicrobial-peptide mimetic polymers display antibacterial activity against a broad spectrum of bacteria including drug-resistant strains and are less susceptible to resistance development in bacteria. These polymers also showed selective activity to bacteria over mammalian cells. Antimicrobial polymers provide a new molecular framework for chemical modification and adaptation to tune their biological functions. The peptide-mimetic design of antimicrobial polymers will be versatile, generating a new generation of antibiotics toward implementation of polymers in biomedical applications. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. Antimicrobial peptides from the venoms of Vespa bicolor Fabricius.

    PubMed

    Chen, Wenhu; Yang, Xinbo; Yang, Xiaolong; Zhai, Lei; Lu, Zekuan; Liu, Jingze; Yu, Haining

    2008-11-01

    Hornets possess highly toxic venoms, which are rich in toxins, enzymes and biologically active peptides. Many bioactive substances have been identified from wasp venoms. Vespa mastoparan (MP-VBs) and Vespa chemotatic peptide presenting antimicrobial action (VESP-VBs) were purified and characterized from the venom of the wasp, Vespa bicolor Fabricius. The precursors encoding VESP-VBs and MP-VBs were cloned from the cDNA library of the venomous glands. Analyzed by FAB-MS, the amino acid sequence and molecular mass for VESP-VB1 were FMPIIGRLMSGSL and 1420.6, for MP-VB1 were INMKASAAVAKKLL and 1456.5, respectively. The primary structures of these peptides are homologous to those of chemotactic peptides and mastoparans isolated from other vespid venoms. These peptides showed strong antimicrobial activities against bacteria and fungi and induced mast cell degranulation, but displayed almost no hemolytic activity towards human blood red cells.

  16. Leukocyte antimicrobial peptides: multifunctional effector molecules of innate immunity.

    PubMed

    Risso, A

    2000-12-01

    Antimicrobial peptides are effector molecules of innate immunity that provide a first line of defense against pathogens. In mammals, they are stored in granules of leukocytes and are present in those sites that are exposed to microbial invasion, such as mucosal surfaces and skin. In the last decade, biochemical investigations and recombinant DNA technology have allowed the identification and characterization of several antimicrobial peptides from various animal and vegetal species. Most of the mammalian peptides have been grouped in two broad families: defensins and cathelicidin-derived peptides. Functional studies have shown that the toxicity mechanisms for many peptides consist of a rapid permeabilization of the target cell membrane. In addition to their microbicidal activity, some members of both families are multifunctional molecules, playing a modulating role in the inflammation and the antigen-driven immune response.

  17. Improved Methods for Classification, Prediction and Design of Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Guangshun

    2015-01-01

    Peptides with diverse amino acid sequences, structures and functions are essential players in biological systems. The construction of well-annotated databases not only facilitates effective information management, search and mining, but also lays the foundation for developing and testing new peptide algorithms and machines. The antimicrobial peptide database (APD) is an original construction in terms of both database design and peptide entries. The host defense antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) registered in the APD cover the five kingdoms (bacteria, protists, fungi, plants, and animals) or three domains of life (bacteria, archaea, and eukaryota). This comprehensive database (http://aps.unmc.edu/AP) provides useful information on peptide discovery timeline, nomenclature, classification, glossary, calculation tools, and statistics. The APD enables effective search, prediction, and design of peptides with antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, antiparasitic, insecticidal, spermicidal, anticancer activities, chemotactic, immune modulation, or anti-oxidative properties. A universal classification scheme is proposed herein to unify innate immunity peptides from a variety of biological sources. As an improvement, the upgraded APD makes predictions based on the database-defined parameter space and provides a list of the sequences most similar to natural AMPs. In addition, the powerful pipeline design of the database search engine laid a solid basis for designing novel antimicrobials to combat resistant superbugs, viruses, fungi or parasites. This comprehensive AMP database is a useful tool for both research and education. PMID:25555720

  18. Sparse Neural Network Models of Antimicrobial Peptide-Activity Relationships.

    PubMed

    Müller, Alex T; Kaymaz, Aral C; Gabernet, Gisela; Posselt, Gernot; Wessler, Silja; Hiss, Jan A; Schneider, Gisbert

    2016-12-01

    We present an adaptive neural network model for chemical data classification. The method uses an evolutionary algorithm for optimizing the network structure by seeking sparsely connected architectures. The number of hidden layers, the number of neurons in each layer and their connectivity are free variables of the system. We used the method for predicting antimicrobial peptide activity from the amino acid sequence. Visualization of the evolved sparse network structures suggested a high charge density and a low aggregation potential in solution as beneficial for antimicrobial activity. However, different training data sets and peptide representations resulted in greatly varying network structures. Overall, the sparse network models turned out to be less accurate than fully-connected networks. In a prospective application, we synthesized and tested 10 de novo generated peptides that were predicted to either possess antimicrobial activity, or to be inactive. Two of the predicted antibacterial peptides showed cosiderable bacteriostatic effects against both Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli. None of the predicted inactive peptides possessed antibacterial properties. Molecular dynamics simulations of selected peptide structures in water and TFE suggest a pronounced peptide helicity in a hydrophobic environment. The results of this study underscore the applicability of neural networks for guiding the computer-assisted design of new peptides with desired properties.

  19. Antimicrobial peptide coatings for hydroxyapatite: electrostatic and covalent attachment of antimicrobial peptides to surfaces.

    PubMed

    Townsend, Leigh; Williams, Richard L; Anuforom, Olachi; Berwick, Matthew R; Halstead, Fenella; Hughes, Erik; Stamboulis, Artemis; Oppenheim, Beryl; Gough, Julie; Grover, Liam; Scott, Robert A H; Webber, Mark; Peacock, Anna F A; Belli, Antonio; Logan, Ann; de Cogan, Felicity

    2017-01-01

    The interface between implanted devices and their host tissue is complex and is often optimized for maximal integration and cell adhesion. However, this also gives a surface suitable for bacterial colonization. We have developed a novel method of modifying the surface at the material-tissue interface with an antimicrobial peptide (AMP) coating to allow cell attachment while inhibiting bacterial colonization. The technology reported here is a dual AMP coating. The dual coating consists of AMPs covalently bonded to the hydroxyapatite surface, followed by deposition of electrostatically bound AMPs. The dual approach gives an efficacious coating which is stable for over 12 months and can prevent colonization of the surface by both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria.

  20. De Novo Designed Synthetic Mimics of Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Scott, Richard W.; DeGrado, William F.; Tew, Gregory N.

    2008-01-01

    Summary Antimicrobial peptides are small cationic amphiphiles that play an important role in the innate immune system. Given their broad specificity, they appear to be ideal therapeutic agents. As a result, over the last decade, there has been considerable interest in developing them as intravenously administered antibiotics. However, it has proven difficult to accomplish this goal with peptide-based structures. While it has been possible to solve some relatively simple problems such as susceptibility to proteolysis, more severe problems have included the expense of the materials, toxicity, limited efficacy, and limited tissue distribution. As a result, we developed small synthetic oligomers designed to adopt amphiphilic conformations and exhibit potent antimicrobial activity while being non-toxic to host cells. One class of these synthetic mimics of antimicrobial peptides (SMAMPs) is being developed as intravenous antibiotics PMID:18996193

  1. [Role of antimicrobial peptides (AMP) and pattern recognition receptors (PRR) in the intestinal mucosa homeostasis].

    PubMed

    Lapis, Károly

    2009-11-22

    Homeostasis and integrity of bowel mucosa is assured by well controlled mechanical, biochemical and immunological mechanisms. First line of defense is presented by the antimicrobial peptides (AMP), which form a continuous layer on the bowel surface, produced by intestinal specific (Paneth) and non-specific epithelial cells. AMPs have a significant antimicrobial, antifungal and antiviral, as well as immunomodulatory effects. Next line of defense is the pattern recognition receptors (PRR), which allows identifying conservative molecular patterns of different pathogens, and starts antimicrobial and inflammatory mechanisms through gene-expression induction. We review the most recent knowledge and studies concerning these mechanisms.

  2. Insights into Antimicrobial Peptides from Spiders and Scorpions.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiuqing; Wang, Guangshun

    2016-01-01

    The venoms of spiders and scorpions contain a variety of chemical compounds. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) from these organisms were first discovered in the 1990s. As of May 2015, there were 42 spider's and 63 scorpion's AMPs in the Antimicrobial Peptide Database (http://aps.unmc.edu/AP). These peptides have demonstrated broad or narrow-spectrum activities against bacteria, fungi, viruses, and parasites. In addition, they can be toxic to cancer cells, insects and erythrocytes. To provide insight into such an activity spectrum, this article discusses the discovery, classification, structure and activity relationships, bioinformatics analysis, and potential applications of spider and scorpion AMPs. Our analysis reveals that, in the case of linear peptides, spiders use both glycine-rich and helical peptide models for defense, whereas scorpions use two distinct helical peptide models with different amino acid compositions to exert the observed antimicrobial activities and hemolytic toxicity. Our structural bioinformatics study improves the knowledge in the field and can be used to design more selective peptides to combat tumors, parasites, and viruses.

  3. Insights into Antimicrobial Peptides from Spiders and Scorpions

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Xiuqing; Wang, Guangshun

    2015-01-01

    The venoms of spiders and scorpions contain a variety of chemical compounds. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) from these organisms were first discovered in the 1990s. As of May 2015, there were 42 spider’s and 63 scorpion’s AMPs in the Antimicrobial Peptide Database (http://aps.unmc.edu/AP). These peptides have demonstrated broad or narrow-spectrum activities against bacteria, fungi, viruses, and parasites. In addition, they can be toxic to cancer cells, insects and erythrocytes. To provide insight into such an activity spectrum, this article discusses the discovery, classification, structure and activity relationships, bioinformatics analysis, and potential applications of spider and scorpion AMPs. Our analysis reveals that, in the case of linear peptides, spiders use both glycine-rich and helical peptide models for defense, whereas scorpions use two distinct helical peptide models with different amino acid compositions to exert the observed antimicrobial activities and hemolytic toxicity. Our structural bioinformatics study improves the knowledge in the field and can be used to design more selective peptides to combat tumors, parasites, and viruses. PMID:27165405

  4. Antimicrobial peptide defenses against pathogens associated with global amphibian declines.

    PubMed

    Rollins-Smith, Louise A; Doersam, Jennifer K; Longcore, Joyce E; Taylor, Sharon K; Shamblin, Jessica C; Carey, Cynthia; Zasloff, Michael A

    2002-01-01

    Global declines of amphibian populations are a source of great concern. Several pathogens that can infect the skin have been implicated in the declines. The pathogen most frequently associated with recent die-offs is a chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. A second fungus, Basidiobolus ranarum, was isolated from declining populations of Wyoming toads. A third pathogen, Aeromonas hydrophila, is an opportunistic bacterium found in healthy frogs, but capable of inducing disease. Among the immune defense mechanisms used by amphibians is the production of antimicrobial peptides in granular glands in the skin. These packets of natural antibiotics can be emptied onto the skin when the amphibian is injured. To determine whether antimicrobial skin peptides defend against these amphibian pathogens, six peptides (magainin I, magainin II, PGLa, CPF, ranalexin, and dermaseptin), from three species, and representing three structurally different families of peptides, were tested in growth inhibition assays. We show here that the peptides can kill or inhibit growth of both fungi but not Aeromonas. Although each peptide varied in its effectiveness, at least one from each species was effective against both fungi at a concentration of about 10-20 microM. This is the first direct evidence that antimicrobial peptides in the skin can operate as a first line of defense against the organisms associated with global amphibian declines. It suggests that this innate defense mechanism may play a role in preventing or limiting infection by these organisms.

  5. IQ-motif peptides as novel anti-microbial agents.

    PubMed

    McLean, Denise T F; Lundy, Fionnuala T; Timson, David J

    2013-04-01

    The IQ-motif is an amphipathic, often positively charged, α-helical, calmodulin binding sequence found in a number of eukaryote signalling, transport and cytoskeletal proteins. They share common biophysical characteristics with established, cationic α-helical antimicrobial peptides, such as the human cathelicidin LL-37. Therefore, we tested eight peptides encoding the sequences of IQ-motifs derived from the human cytoskeletal scaffolding proteins IQGAP2 and IQGAP3. Some of these peptides were able to inhibit the growth of Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus with minimal inhibitory concentrations (MIC) comparable to LL-37. In addition some IQ-motifs had activity against the fungus Candida albicans. This antimicrobial activity is combined with low haemolytic activity (comparable to, or lower than, that of LL-37). Those IQ-motifs with anti-microbial activity tended to be able to bind to lipopolysaccharide. Some of these were also able to permeabilise the cell membranes of both Gram positive and Gram negative bacteria. These results demonstrate that IQ-motifs are viable lead sequences for the identification and optimisation of novel anti-microbial peptides. Thus, further investigation of the anti-microbial properties of this diverse group of sequences is merited.

  6. Discovering new in silico tools for antimicrobial peptide prediction.

    PubMed

    Torrent, Marc; Nogués, M Victòria; Boix, Ester

    2012-08-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are important effectors of the innate immune system and play a vital role in the prevention of infections. Due to the increased emergence of new antibiotic-resistant bacteria, new drugs are constantly under investigation. AMPs in particular are recognized as promising candidates because of their modularity and wide antimicrobial spectrum. However, the mechanisms of action of AMPs, as well as their structure-activity relationships, are not completely understood. AMPs display no conserved three-dimensional structure and poor sequence conservation, which hinders rational design. Several bioinformatics tools have been developed to generate new templates with appealing antimicrobial properties with the aim of finding highly active peptide compounds with low cytotoxicity. The current tools reviewed here allow for the prediction and design of new active peptides with reasonable accuracy. However, a reliable method to assess the antimicrobial activity of AMPs has not yet been developed. The standardization of procedures to experimentally evaluate the antimicrobial activity of AMPs, together with the constant growth of current well-established databases, may allow for the future development of new bioinformatics tools to accurately predict antimicrobial activity.

  7. Butyrate enhances disease resistance of chickens by inducing antimicrobial host defense peptide gene expression

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Host defense peptides (HDPs) constitute a large group of natural broad-spectrum antimicrobials and an important first line of immunity in virtually all forms of life. Specific augmentation of synthesis of endogenous HDPs may represent a promising antibiotic-alternative approach to disease control. I...

  8. Antimicrobial peptides and bacteriocins: alternatives to traditional antibiotics.

    PubMed

    Sang, Yongming; Blecha, Frank

    2008-12-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are ubiquitous, gene-encoded natural antibiotics that have gained recent attention in the search for new antimicrobials to combat infectious disease. In multicellular organisms, AMPs, such as defensins and cathelicidins, provide a coordinated protective response against infection and are a principal component of innate immunity in vertebrates. In unicellular organisms, AMPs, such as bacteriocins, function to suppress competitor species. Because many AMPs kill bacteria by disruption of membrane integrity and are thus thought to be less likely to induce resistance, AMPs are being extensively evaluated as novel antimicrobial drugs. This review summarizes and discusses the antibiotic properties of AMPs highlighting their potential as alternatives to conventional antibiotics.

  9. A maritime pine antimicrobial peptide involved in ammonium nutrition.

    PubMed

    Canales, Javier; Avila, Concepción; Cánovas, Francisco M

    2011-09-01

    A large family of small cysteine-rich antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) is involved in the innate defence of plants against pathogens. Recently, it has been shown that AMPs may also play important roles in plant growth and development. In previous work, we have identified a gene of the AMP β-barrelin family that was differentially regulated in the roots of maritime pine (Pinus pinaster Ait.) in response to changes in ammonium nutrition. Here, we present the molecular characterization of two AMP genes, PpAMP1 and PpAMP2, showing different molecular structure and physicochemical properties. PpAMP1 and PpAMP2 displayed different expression patterns in maritime pine seedlings and adult trees. Furthermore, our expression analyses indicate that PpAMP1 is the major form of AMP in the tree, and its relative abundance is regulated by ammonium availability. In contrast, PpAMP2 is expressed at much lower levels and it is not regulated by ammonium. To gain new insights into the function of PpAMP1, we over-expressed the recombinant protein in Escherichia coli and demonstrated that PpAMP1 strongly inhibited yeast growth, indicating that it exhibits antimicrobial activity. We have also found that PpAMP1 alters ammonium uptake, suggesting that it is involved in the regulation of ammonium ion flux into pine roots. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  10. Use of antimicrobial peptides against microbial biofilms: advantages and limits.

    PubMed

    Batoni, Giovanna; Maisetta, Giuseppantonio; Brancatisano, Franca Lisa; Esin, Semih; Campa, Mario

    2011-01-01

    The formation of surface-attached cellular agglomerates, the so-called biofilms, contributes significantly to bacterial resistance to antibiotics and innate host defenses. Bacterial biofilms are associated to various pathological conditions in humans such as cystic fibrosis, colonization of indwelling medical devices and dental plaque formation involved in caries and periodontitis. Over the last years, natural antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have attracted considerable interest as a new class of antimicrobial drugs for a number of reasons. Among these, there are the broad activity spectrum, the relative selectivity towards their targets (microbial membranes), the rapid mechanism of action and, above all, the low frequency in selecting resistant strains. Since biofilm resistance to antibiotics is mainly due to the slow growth rate and low metabolic activity of bacteria in such community, the use of AMPs to inhibit biofilm formation could be potentially an attractive therapeutic approach. In fact, due to the prevalent mechanism of action of AMPs, which relies on their ability to permeabilize and/or to form pores within the cytoplasmic membranes, they have a high potential to act also on slow growing or even non-growing bacteria. This review will highlight the most important findings obtained testing AMPs in in vitro and in vivo models of bacterial biofilms, pointing out the possible advantages and limits of their use against microbial biofilm-related infections.

  11. Mechanism of bacterial membrane poration by Antimicrobial Peptides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arora, Ankita; Mishra, Abhijit

    2015-03-01

    Bacterial resistance to conventional antibiotics is a major health concern. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), an important component of mammalian immune system, are thought to utilize non-specific interactions to target common features on the outer membranes of pathogens; hence development of resistance to such AMPs may be less pronounced. Most AMPs are amphiphilic and cationic in nature. Most AMPs form pores in the bacterial membranes causing them to lyse, however, the exact mechanism is unknown. Here, we study the AMP CHRG01 (KSSTRGRKSSRRKK), derived from human β defensin 3 (hBD3) with all Cysteine residues substituted with Serine. Circular Dichorism studies indicate that CHRG01 shows helicity and there is change in helicity as it interacts with the lipid membrane. The AMP was effective against different species of bacteria. Leakage of cellular components from bacterial cells observed by SEM and AFM indicates AMP action by pore formation. Confocal microscopy studies on giant vesicles incubated with AMP confirm poration. The effect of this AMP on model bacterial membranes is characterized using Small Angle X-ray scattering and Fluorescence spectroscopy to elucidate the mechanism behind antimicrobial activity.

  12. Convergent evolution-guided design of antimicrobial peptides derived from influenza A virus hemagglutinin.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Shunyi; Aumelas, André; Gao, Bin

    2011-02-24

    Antimicrobial activity and solution structures of four 13-amino acid peptides derived from the fusion domain of viral hemagglutinin proteins are presented. The results show that carboxyl-terminal amidation is a key factor to switch a viral fusion domain-derived sequence into an antimicrobial peptide. Optimization of amphiphilic balance on the amidated analogue largely improves efficacy and enlarges antimicrobial spectra of these peptides. Our work indicates that viral fusion domains have potential to be engineered into potent antimicrobial peptides.

  13. Imaging the action of antimicrobial peptides on living bacterial cells

    PubMed Central

    Gee, Michelle L.; Burton, Matthew; Grevis-James, Alistair; Hossain, Mohammed Akhter; McArthur, Sally; Palombo, Enzo A.; Wade, John D.; Clayton, Andrew H. A.

    2013-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides hold promise as broad-spectrum alternatives to conventional antibiotics. The mechanism of action of this class of peptide is a topical area of research focused predominantly on their interaction with artificial membranes. Here we compare the interaction mechanism of a model antimicrobial peptide with single artificial membranes and live bacterial cells. The interaction kinetics was imaged using time-lapse fluorescence lifetime imaging of a fluorescently-tagged melittin derivative. Interaction with the synthetic membranes resulted in membrane pore formation. In contrast, the interaction with bacteria led to transient membrane disruption and corresponding leakage of the cytoplasm, but surprisingly with a much reduced level of pore formation. The discovery that pore formation is a less significant part of lipid-peptide interaction in live bacteria highlights the mechanistic complexity of these interactions in living cells compared to simple artificial systems. PMID:23532056

  14. Fungicidal mechanisms of the antimicrobial peptide Bac8c.

    PubMed

    Lee, Wonyoung; Lee, Dong Gun

    2015-02-01

    Bac8c (RIWVIWRR-NH2) is an analogue peptide derived through complete substitution analysis of the linear bovine host defense peptide variant Bac2A. In the present study, the antifungal mechanism of Bac8c against pathogenic fungi was investigated, with a particular focus on the effects of Bac8c on the cytoplasmic membrane. We used bis-(1,3-dibutylbarbituric acid) trimethine oxonol [DiBAC4(3)] staining and 3,3'-dipropylthiacarbocyanine iodide [DiSC3(5)] assays to show that Bac8c induced disturbances in the membrane potential of Candida albicans. An increase in membrane permeability and suppression of cell wall regeneration were also observed in Bac8c-treated C. albicans. We studied the effects of Bac8c treatment on model membranes to elucidate its antifungal mechanism. Using calcein and FITC-labeled dextran leakage assays from Bac8c-treated large unilamellar vesicles (LUVs) and giant unilamellar vesicles (GUVs), we found that Bac8c has a pore-forming action on fungal membranes, with an estimated pore radius of between 2.3 and 3.3 nm. A membrane-targeted mechanism of action was also supported by the observation of potassium release from the cytosol of Bac8c-treated C. albicans. These results indicate that Bac8c is considered as a potential candidate to develop a novel antimicrobial agent because of its low-cost production characteristics and high antimicrobial activity via its ability to induce membrane perturbations in fungi.

  15. Strategies and molecular tools to fight antimicrobial resistance: resistome, transcriptome, and antimicrobial peptides

    PubMed Central

    Tavares, Letícia S.; Silva, Carolina S. F.; de Souza, Vinicius C.; da Silva, Vânia L.; Diniz, Cláudio G.; Santos, Marcelo O.

    2013-01-01

    The increasing number of antibiotic resistant bacteria motivates prospective research toward discovery of new antimicrobial active substances. There are, however, controversies concerning the cost-effectiveness of such research with regards to the description of new substances with novel cellular interactions, or description of new uses of existing substances to overcome resistance. Although examination of bacteria isolated from remote locations with limited exposure to humans has revealed an absence of antibiotic resistance genes, it is accepted that these genes were both abundant and diverse in ancient living organisms, as detected in DNA recovered from Pleistocene deposits (30,000 years ago). Indeed, even before the first clinical use of antibiotics more than 60 years ago, resistant organisms had been isolated. Bacteria can exhibit different strategies for resistance against antibiotics. New genetic information may lead to the modification of protein structure affecting the antibiotic carriage into the cell, enzymatic inactivation of drugs, or even modification of cellular structure interfering in the drug-bacteria interaction. There are still plenty of new genes out there in the environment that can be appropriated by putative pathogenic bacteria to resist antimicrobial agents. On the other hand, there are several natural compounds with antibiotic activity that may be used to oppose them. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are molecules which are wide-spread in all forms of life, from multi-cellular organisms to bacterial cells used to interfere with microbial growth. Several AMPs have been shown to be effective against multi-drug resistant bacteria and have low propensity to resistance development, probably due to their unique mode of action, different from well-known antimicrobial drugs. These substances may interact in different ways with bacterial cell membrane, protein synthesis, protein modulation, and protein folding. The analysis of bacterial transcriptome

  16. Antimicrobial peptides: a new class of antimalarial drugs?

    PubMed Central

    Vale, Nuno; Aguiar, Luísa; Gomes, Paula

    2014-01-01

    A range of antimicrobial peptides (AMP) exhibit activity on malaria parasites, Plasmodium spp., in their blood or mosquito stages, or both. These peptides include a diverse array of both natural and synthetic molecules varying greatly in size, charge, hydrophobicity, and secondary structure features. Along with an overview of relevant literature reports regarding AMP that display antiplasmodial activity, this review makes a few considerations about those molecules as a potential new class of antimalarial drugs. PMID:25566072

  17. Identification of candidate antimicrobial peptides derived from abalone hemocyanin.

    PubMed

    Zhuang, Jun; Coates, Christopher J; Zhu, Hongtao; Zhu, Ping; Wu, Zujian; Xie, Lianhui

    2015-03-01

    Hemocyanins present in invertebrate hemolymph are multifunctional proteins, responsible for oxygen transport and contributing to innate immunity through phenoloxidase-like activity. In arthropods, hemocyanin has been identified as a source of broad-spectrum antimicrobial peptides during infection. Conversely, no hemocyanin-derived antimicrobial peptides have been reported for molluscs. The present study describes a putative antimicrobial region, termed haliotisin, located within the linking sequence between the α-helical domain and β-sheet domain of abalone (Haliotis tuberculata) hemocyanin functional unit E. A series of synthetic peptides based on overlapping fragments of the haliotisin region were tested for their bactericidal potential. Incubating Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria in the presence of certain haliotisin peptides, notably peptides 3-4-5 (DTFDYKKFGYRYDSLELEGRSISRIDELIQQRQEKDRTFAGFLLKGFGTSAS) led to reductions in microbial growth. Furthermore, transmission electron micrographs of haliotisin-treated bacteria revealed damages to the microbial cell wall. Data discussed here provides the first evidence to suggest that molluscan hemocyanin may act as a source of anti-infective peptides.

  18. Biofilms from Klebsiella pneumoniae: Matrix Polysaccharide Structure and Interactions with Antimicrobial Peptides.

    PubMed

    Benincasa, Monica; Lagatolla, Cristina; Dolzani, Lucilla; Milan, Annalisa; Pacor, Sabrina; Liut, Gianfranco; Tossi, Alessandro; Cescutti, Paola; Rizzo, Roberto

    2016-08-10

    Biofilm matrices of two Klebsiella pneumoniae clinical isolates, KpTs101 and KpTs113, were investigated for their polysaccharide composition and protective effects against antimicrobial peptides. Both strains were good biofilm producers, with KpTs113 forming flocs with very low adhesive properties to supports. Matrix exopolysaccharides were isolated and their monosaccharide composition and glycosidic linkage types were defined. KpTs101 polysaccharide is neutral and composed only of galactose, in both pyranose and furanose ring configurations. Conversely, KpTs113 polysaccharide is anionic due to glucuronic acid units, and also contains glucose and mannose residues. The susceptibility of the two strains to two bovine cathelicidin antimicrobial peptides, BMAP-27 and Bac7(1-35), was assessed using both planktonic cultures and biofilms. Biofilm matrices exerted a relevant protection against both antimicrobials, which act with quite different mechanisms. Similar protection was also detected when antimicrobial peptides were tested against planktonic bacteria in the presence of the polysaccharides extracted from KpTs101 and KpTs113 biofilms, suggesting sequestering adduct formation with antimicrobials. Circular dichroism experiments on BMAP-27 in the presence of increasing amounts of either polysaccharide confirmed their ability to interact with the peptide and induce an α-helical conformation.

  19. Biofilms from Klebsiella pneumoniae: Matrix Polysaccharide Structure and Interactions with Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Benincasa, Monica; Lagatolla, Cristina; Dolzani, Lucilla; Milan, Annalisa; Pacor, Sabrina; Liut, Gianfranco; Tossi, Alessandro; Cescutti, Paola; Rizzo, Roberto

    2016-01-01

    Biofilm matrices of two Klebsiella pneumoniae clinical isolates, KpTs101 and KpTs113, were investigated for their polysaccharide composition and protective effects against antimicrobial peptides. Both strains were good biofilm producers, with KpTs113 forming flocs with very low adhesive properties to supports. Matrix exopolysaccharides were isolated and their monosaccharide composition and glycosidic linkage types were defined. KpTs101 polysaccharide is neutral and composed only of galactose, in both pyranose and furanose ring configurations. Conversely, KpTs113 polysaccharide is anionic due to glucuronic acid units, and also contains glucose and mannose residues. The susceptibility of the two strains to two bovine cathelicidin antimicrobial peptides, BMAP-27 and Bac7(1–35), was assessed using both planktonic cultures and biofilms. Biofilm matrices exerted a relevant protection against both antimicrobials, which act with quite different mechanisms. Similar protection was also detected when antimicrobial peptides were tested against planktonic bacteria in the presence of the polysaccharides extracted from KpTs101 and KpTs113 biofilms, suggesting sequestering adduct formation with antimicrobials. Circular dichroism experiments on BMAP-27 in the presence of increasing amounts of either polysaccharide confirmed their ability to interact with the peptide and induce an α-helical conformation. PMID:27681920

  20. Linear antimicrobial peptides from Ectatomma quadridens ant venom.

    PubMed

    Pluzhnikov, Kirill A; Kozlov, Sergey A; Vassilevski, Alexander A; Vorontsova, Olga V; Feofanov, Alexei V; Grishin, Eugene V

    2014-12-01

    Venoms from three poneromorph ant species (Paraponera clavata, Ectatomma quadridens and Ectatomma tuberculatum) were investigated for the growth inhibition of Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. It was shown that the venom of E. quadridens and its peptide fraction in particular possess marked antibacterial action. Three linear antimicrobial peptides sharing low similarity to the well-known ponericin peptides were isolated from this ant venom by means of size-exclusion and reversed-phase chromatography. The peptides showed antimicrobial activity at low micromolar concentrations. Their primary structure was established by direct Edman sequencing in combination with mass spectrometry. The most active peptide designated ponericin-Q42 was chemically synthesized. Its secondary structure was investigated in aqueous and membrane-mimicking environment, and the peptide was shown to be partially helical already in water, which is unusual for short linear peptides. Analysis of its activity on different bacterial strains, human erythrocytes and chronic myelogenous leukemia K562 cells revealed that the peptide shows broad spectrum cytolytic activity at micromolar and submicromolar concentrations. Ponericin-Q42 also possesses weak toxic activity on flesh fly larvae with LD50 of ∼105 μg/g.

  1. Lipid-Based Liquid Crystals As Carriers for Antimicrobial Peptides: Phase Behavior and Antimicrobial Effect.

    PubMed

    Boge, Lukas; Bysell, Helena; Ringstad, Lovisa; Wennman, David; Umerska, Anita; Cassisa, Viviane; Eriksson, Jonny; Joly-Guillou, Marie-Laure; Edwards, Katarina; Andersson, Martin

    2016-05-03

    The number of antibiotic-resistant bacteria is increasing worldwide, and the demand for novel antimicrobials is constantly growing. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) could be an important part of future treatment strategies of various bacterial infection diseases. However, AMPs have relatively low stability, because of proteolytic and chemical degradation. As a consequence, carrier systems protecting the AMPs are greatly needed, to achieve efficient treatments. In addition, the carrier system also must administrate the peptide in a controlled manner to match the therapeutic dose window. In this work, lyotropic liquid crystalline (LC) structures consisting of cubic glycerol monooleate/water and hexagonal glycerol monooleate/oleic acid/water have been examined as carriers for AMPs. These LC structures have the capability of solubilizing both hydrophilic and hydrophobic substances, as well as being biocompatible and biodegradable. Both bulk gels and discrete dispersed structures (i.e., cubosomes and hexosomes) have been studied. Three AMPs have been investigated with respect to phase stability of the LC structures and antimicrobial effect: AP114, DPK-060, and LL-37. Characterization of the LC structures was performed using small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS), dynamic light scattering, ζ-potential, and cryogenic transmission electron microscopy (Cryo-TEM) and peptide loading efficacy by ultra performance liquid chromatography. The antimicrobial effect of the LCNPs was investigated in vitro using minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) and time-kill assay. The most hydrophobic peptide (AP114) was shown to induce an increase in negative curvature of the cubic LC system. The most polar peptide (DPK-060) induced a decrease in negative curvature while LL-37 did not change the LC phase at all. The hexagonal LC phase was not affected by any of the AMPs. Moreover, cubosomes loaded with peptides AP114 and DPK-060 showed preserved antimicrobial activity, whereas particles loaded

  2. Selected antimicrobial peptides inhibit in vitro growth of Campylobacter spp.

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Novel alternatives to traditional antibiotics are urgently needed for food-animal production. A goal of our laboratory is to develop and evaluate antimicrobial peptides (AMP) to control and reduce foodborne pathogens in poultry. AMP have been found in most every class of living organism where they h...

  3. Expression of ayu antimicrobial peptide genes after LPS stimulation

    PubMed Central

    NSRELDEN, Rehab Marray; HORIUCHI, Hiroyuki; FURUSAWA, Shuichi

    2017-01-01

    Plecoglossus altivelis (ayu) is one of the most important fish species in the Japanese islands and in internal fish hatcheries. Living in open aquatic environments exposes fish to many pathogens. Therefore, they require rapid and strong immune defenses. We investigated in vivo the direct association between the ayu innate immune response, represented by the relative transcription of genes encoding the cathelicidin and hepcidin antimicrobial peptides, and lipopolysaccharide (LPS), a conventional pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) of Gram-negative bacteria. Different concentrations of LPS (1, 10 and 100 µg/fish) were injected intraperitoneally into young (sexually immature) and adult (fully sexually mature) ayu. The relative expression of the antimicrobial peptide genes was measured 6 hr, 24 hr and 1 week after stimulation with LPS. We found a direct association between the expression of the antimicrobial peptide genes investigated and LPS stimulation. This relationship was time-, dose- and age-dependent. Further research is required to determine the cell-specific transcriptional regulation and posttranscriptional regulation of these antimicrobial peptides. PMID:28484129

  4. Design of novel analogues of short antimicrobial peptide anoplin with improved antimicrobial activity.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yang; Chen, Jianbo; Zheng, Xin; Yang, Xiaoli; Ma, Panpan; Cai, Ying; Zhang, Bangzhi; Chen, Yuan

    2014-12-01

    Currently, novel antibiotics are urgently required to combat the emergence of drug-resistant bacteria. Antimicrobial peptides with membrane-lytic mechanism of action have attracted considerable interest. Anoplin, a natural α-helical amphiphilic antimicrobial peptide, is an ideal research template because of its short sequence. In this study, we designed and synthesized a group of analogues of anoplin. Among these analogues, anoplin-4 composed of D-amino acids displayed the highest antimicrobial activity due to increased charge, hydrophobicity and amphiphilicity. Gratifyingly, anoplin-4 showed low toxicity to host cells, indicating high bacterial selectivity. Furthermore, the mortality rate of mice infected with Escherichia coli was significantly reduced by anoplin-4 treatment relative to anoplin. In conclusion, anoplin-4 is a novel anoplin analogue with high antimicrobial activity and enzymatic stability, which may represent a potent agent for the treatment of infection.

  5. [Cationic antimicrobial peptides as molecular immunity factors: multi-functionality].

    PubMed

    Kokriakov, V N; Koval'chuk, L V; Aleshina, G M; Shamova, O V

    2006-01-01

    Cationic antimicrobial peptides (AMP) of mammals (defensins, cathelicidins, protegrins and many others) are regarded as important components of congenital immunity. AMP are multifunctional molecules, capable of killing microorganisms directly by acting as endogenic, natural antibiotics ("immediate immunity"); in addition, they may take part in congenital and adaptive immune reactions (immunoregulation) and function as signal molecules, involved into tissue reparation, inflammation (including sepsis), blood coagulation and other important processes in the body. The molecular mechanisms of the direct antimicrobial action of AMP are considered. In addition to antimicrobial and immunoregulating action, AMP have influence on immunoneuroendocrine interactions, taking part in the pathogenesis of stress reactions (corticostatic action), as well as play the role of regulatory peptides of adaptogenic action. The many-sided character of the action of AMP opens prospects to the creation of new medicinal remedies on their basis. Such requirements are met by the Russian preparation "Superlymph" (a complex of natural cytokines), containing protegrin-like AMP.

  6. De novo antimicrobial peptides with low mammalian cell toxicity.

    PubMed

    Javadpour, M M; Juban, M M; Lo, W C; Bishop, S M; Alberty, J B; Cowell, S M; Becker, C L; McLaughlin, M L

    1996-08-02

    De novo antimicrobial peptides with the sequences: (KLAKKLA)n, (KLAKLAK)n (where n = 1,2,3), (KALKALK)3, (KLGKKLG)n, and (KAAKKAA)n (where n = 2,3), were prepared as the C-terminus amides. These peptides were designed to be perfectly amphipathic in helical conformations. Peptide antibacterial activity was tested against Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Staphylococcus aureus. Peptide cytotoxicity was tested against human erythrocytes and 3T3 mouse fibroblasts. The 3T3 cell testing was a much more sensitive test of cytotoxicity. The peptides were much less lytic toward human erythrocytes than 3T3 cells. Peptide secondary structure in aqueous solution, sodium dodecylsulfate micelles, and phospholipid vesicles was estimated using circular dichroism spectroscopy. The leucine/alanine-containing 21-mers were bacteriostatic at 3-8 microM and cytotoxic to 3T3 cells at about 10 microM concentrations. The leucine/alanine- or leucine/glycine-containing 14-mers and the leucine/glycine 21-mer were bacteriostatic at 6-22 microM but had much lower cytotoxicity toward 3T3 cells and higher selectivities than the natural antimicrobial peptides magainin 2 amide and cecropin B amide. The 7-mer peptides are devoid of biological activity and of secondary structure in membrane mimetic environments. The 14-mer peptides and the glycine-containing 21-mer show modest levels of helicity in model membranes. The leucine/alanine-containing 21-mer peptides have substantial helicity in model membranes. The propensity to alpha-helical conformation of the peptides in amphipathic media is proportional to their 3T3 cell cytotoxicity.

  7. Animal Venom Peptides: Potential for New Antimicrobial Agents.

    PubMed

    Primon-Barros, Muriel; José Macedo, Alexandre

    2017-01-01

    Microbial infections affect people worldwide, causing diseases with significant impact on public health, indicating the need for research and development of new antimicrobial agents. Animal venoms represent a vast and largely unexploited source of biologically active molecules with attractive candidates for the development of novel therapeutics. Venoms consist of complex mixtures of molecules, including antimicrobial peptides (AMPs). Since the discovery of AMPs, they have been studied as promising new antimicrobial drugs. Amongst the remarkable sources of AMPs with known antimicrobial activities are ants, bees, centipedes, cone snails, scorpions, snakes, spiders, and wasps. The antimicrobial tests against bacteria, protozoans, fungi and viruses using 170 different peptides isolated directly from crude venoms or cDNA libraries of venom glands are listed and discussed in this review, as well as hemolytic ativity. The potential of venoms as source of new compounds, including AMPs, is extensively discussed. Currently, there are six FDA-approved drugs and many others are undergoing preclinical and clinical trials. The search for antimicrobial "weapons" makes the AMPs from venoms promising candidates. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  8. Identification of novel human immunodeficiency virus type 1-inhibitory peptides based on the antimicrobial peptide database.

    PubMed

    Wang, Guangshun; Watson, Karen M; Peterkofsky, Alan; Buckheit, Robert W

    2010-03-01

    To identify novel anti-HIV-1 peptides based on the antimicrobial peptide database (APD; http://aps.unmc.edu/AP/main.php), we have screened 30 candidates and found 11 peptides with 50% effective concentrations (EC(50)) of <10 microM and therapeutic indices (TI) of up to 17. Furthermore, among the eight peptides (with identical amino acid compositions but different sequences) generated by shuffling the sequence of an aurein 1.2 analog, two had a TI twice that of the original sequence. Because antiviral peptides in the database have an arginine/lysine (R/K) ratio of >1, increases in the Arg contents of amphibian maximin H5 and dermaseptin S9 peptides and the database-derived GLK-19 peptide improved the TIs. These examples demonstrate that the APD is a rich resource and a useful tool for developing novel HIV-1-inhibitory peptides.

  9. Lipid selectivity in novel antimicrobial peptides: Implication on antimicrobial and hemolytic activity.

    PubMed

    Maturana, P; Martinez, M; Noguera, M E; Santos, N C; Disalvo, E A; Semorile, L; Maffia, P C; Hollmann, A

    2017-05-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are small cationic molecules that display antimicrobial activity against a wide range of bacteria, fungi and viruses. For an AMP to be considered as a therapeutic option, it must have not only potent antibacterial properties but also low hemolytic and cytotoxic activities [1]. Even though many studies have been conducted in order to correlate the antimicrobial activity with affinity toward model lipid membranes, the use of these membranes to explain cytotoxic effects (especially hemolysis) has been less explored. In this context, we studied lipid selectivity in two related novel AMPs, peptide 6 (P6) and peptide 6.2 (P6.2). Each peptide was designed from a previously reported AMP, and specific amino acid replacements were performed in an attempt to shift their hydrophobic moment or net charge. P6 showed no antimicrobial activity and high hemolytic activity, and P6.2 exhibited good antibacterial and low hemolytic activity. Using both peptides as a model we correlated the affinity toward membranes of different lipid composition and the antimicrobial and hemolytic activities. Our results from surface pressure and zeta potential assays showed that P6.2 exhibited a higher affinity and faster binding kinetic toward PG-containing membranes, while P6 showed this behavior for pure PC membranes. The final position and structure of P6.2 into the membrane showed an alpha-helix conversion, resulting in a parallel alignment with the Trps inserted into the membrane. On the other hand, the inability of P6 to adopt an amphipathic structure, plus its lower affinity toward PG-containing membranes seem to explain its poor antimicrobial activity. Regarding erythrocyte interactions, P6 showed the highest affinity toward erythrocyte membranes, resulting in an increased hemolytic activity. Overall, our data led us to conclude that affinity toward negatively charged lipids instead of zwitterionic ones seems to be a key factor that drives from hemolytic to

  10. [Solution structure and antibacterial mechanism of two synthetic antimicrobial peptides].

    PubMed

    Yang, Lin; Fan, Meihua; Liu, Xuezhu; Wu, Mei; Shi, Ge; Liao, Zhi

    2011-11-01

    Mytilin-derived-peptide-1 (MDP-1) and mytilin-derived-peptide-2 (MDP-2) are two truncated decapeptides with reversed sequence synthesized corresponding to the residues 20-29 of mytilin-1 (GenBank Accession No. FJ973154) from M. coruscus. The objective of this study is to characterize the structural basis of these two peptides for their antimicrobial activities and functional differences, and to investigate the inhibitory mechanism of MDPs on Escherichia coli and Sarcina lutea. The structures of MDP-1 and MDP-2 in solution were determined by 1H 2D NMR methods; the antibactericidal effects of MDPs on E. coli and S. lutea were observed by transmitted electron microscopy (TEM). Both MDP-1 and MDP-2 have a well-defined loop structure stabilized by two additional disulfide bridges, which resemble the-hairpin structure of mytilin-1 model. The surface profile of MDPs' structures was characterized by protruding charged residues surrounded by hydrophobic residues. TEM analysis showed that MDPs destroyed cytoplasmic membrane and cell wall of bacteria and the interface between the cell wall and membrane was blurred. Furthermore, some holes were observed in treated bacteria, which resulted in cell death. Structural comparison between MDP-1 and MDP-2 shows that the distribution of positively charged amino acids on the loop of MDPs is topologically different significantly, which might be the reason why MDP-2 has higher activity than MDP-1. Furthermore, TEM results suggested that the bactericidal mechanisms of MDPs against E. coli and S. lutea were similar. Both MDP-1 and MDP-2 could attach to the negatively charged bacterial wall by positively charged amino acid residues and destroy the bacteria membrane in a pore-forming manner, thus cause the contents of the cells to release and eventually cell death.

  11. Natural antimicrobial peptides as promising anti-HIV candidates

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Guangshun

    2015-01-01

    Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection remains to be one of the major global health problems. It is thus necessary to identify novel therapeutic molecules to combat HIV-1. Natural antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have been recognized as promising templates for developing topical microbicides. This review systematically discusses over 80 anti-HIV peptides annotated in the antimicrobial peptide database (http://aps.unmc.edu/AP). Such peptides have been discovered from bacteria, plants, and animals. Examples include gramicidin and bacteriocins from bacteria, cyclotides from plants, melittins and cecropins from insects, piscidins from fish, ascaphins, caerins, dermaseptins, esculentins, and maximins from amphibians, and cathelicidins and defensins from vertebrates. These peptides appear to work by different mechanisms and could block viral entry in multiple ways. As additional advantages, such anti-HIV peptides may possess other desired features such as antibacterial, antiparasital, spermicidal, and anticancer activity. With continued optimization of peptide stability, production, formulation and delivery methods, it is anticipated that some of these compounds may eventually become new anti-HIV drugs. PMID:26834391

  12. Sequence requirements and an optimization strategy for short antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Hilpert, Kai; Elliott, Melissa R; Volkmer-Engert, Rudolf; Henklein, Peter; Donini, Oreola; Zhou, Qun; Winkler, Dirk F H; Hancock, Robert E W

    2006-10-01

    Short antimicrobial host-defense peptides represent a possible alternative as lead structures to fight antibiotic resistant bacterial infections. Bac2A is a 12-mer linear variant of the naturally occurring bovine host defense peptide, bactenecin, and demonstrates moderate, broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria as well as against the yeast Candida albicans. With the assistance of a method involving peptide synthesis on a cellulose support, the primary sequence requirements for antimicrobial activity against the human pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa of 277 Bac2A variants were investigated by using a luciferase-based assay. Sequence scrambling of Bac2A led to activities ranging from superior or equivalent to Bac2A to inactive, indicating that good activity was not solely dependent on the composition of amino acids or the overall charge or hydrophobicity, but rather required particular linear sequence patterns. A QSAR computational analysis was applied to analyze the data resulting in a model that supported this sequence pattern hypothesis. The activity of selected peptides was confirmed by conventional minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) analyses with a panel of human pathogen bacteria and fungi. Circular-dichroism (CD) spectroscopy with selected peptides in liposomes and membrane depolarization assays were consistent with a relationship between structure and activity. An additional optimization process was performed involving systematic amino acid substitutions of one of the optimal scrambled peptide variants, resulting in superior active peptide variants. This process provides a cost and time effective enrichment of new candidates for drug development, increasing the chances of finding pharmacologically relevant peptides.

  13. Chemical immobilization of antimicrobial peptides on biomaterial surfaces.

    PubMed

    Silva, Rafael R; Avelino, Karen Y P S; Ribeiro, Kalline L; Franco, Octavio L; Oliveira, Maria D L; Andrade, Cesar A S

    2016-01-01

    The hospital infections associated with surgical procedures and implants still represents a severe problem to modern society. Therefore, new strategies to combat bacterial infections mainly caused by microorganisms resistant to conventional antibiotics are extremely necessary. In this context, antimicrobial peptides have gained prominence due their biocompatibility, low toxicity and effectiveness. The immobilization of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) onto a biomaterial surface is an excellent alternative to the development of new biodevices with microbicide properties. Herein, we describe reports related to physical-chemical characterization, in vitro/in vivo studies and clinical applicability. In this review, we focused on the AMPs mechanisms of action, different peptide immobilization strategies on solid surface and their microbicide effectiveness.

  14. Scolopendin 2, a cationic antimicrobial peptide from centipede, and its membrane-active mechanism.

    PubMed

    Lee, Heejeong; Hwang, Jae-Sam; Lee, Jaeho; Kim, Jae Il; Lee, Dong Gun

    2015-02-01

    Scolopendin 2 is a 16-mer peptide (AGLQFPVGRIGRLLRK) derived from the centipede Scolopendra subspinipes mutilans. We observed that this peptide exhibited antimicrobial activity in a salt-dependent manner against various fungal and bacterial pathogens and showed no hemolytic effect in the range of 1.6 μM to 100 μM. Circular dichroism analysis showed that the peptide has an α-helical properties. Furthermore, we determined the mechanism(s) of action using flow cytometry and by investigating the release of intracellular potassium. The results showed that the peptide permeabilized the membranes of Escherichia coli O157 and Candida albicans, resulting in loss of intracellular potassium ions. Additionally, bis-(1,3-dibutylbarbituric acid) trimethine oxonol and 3,3'-dipropylthiacarbocyanine iodide assays showed that the peptide caused membrane depolarization. Using giant unilamellar vesicles encapsulating calcein and large unilamellar vesicles containing fluorescein isothiocyanate-dextran, which were similar in composition to typical E. coli O157 and C. albicans membranes, we demonstrated that scolopendin 2 disrupts membranes, resulting in a pore size between 4.8 nm and 5.0 nm. Thus, we have demonstrated that a cationic antimicrobial peptide, scolopendin 2, exerts its broad-spectrum antimicrobial effects by forming pores in the cell membrane.

  15. One pathogen two stones: are Australian tree frog antimicrobial peptides synergistic against human pathogens?

    PubMed

    Sani, Marc-Antoine; Carne, Siobhan; Overall, Sarah A; Poulhazan, Alexandre; Separovic, Frances

    2017-05-06

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) may act by targeting the lipid membranes and disrupting the bilayer structure. In this study, three AMPs from the skin of Australian tree frogs, aurein 1.2, maculatin 1.1 and caerin 1.1, were investigated against Gram-negative Escherichia coli, Gram-positive Staphylococcus aureus, and vesicles that mimic their lipid compositions. Furthermore, equimolar mixtures of the peptides were tested to identify any synergistic interactions in antimicrobial activity. Minimum inhibition concentration and minimum bactericidal concentration assays showed significant activity against S. aureus but not against E. coli. Aurein was the least active while maculatin was the most active peptide and some synergistic effects were observed against S. aureus. Circular dichroism experiments showed that, in the presence of phospholipid vesicles, the peptides transitioned from an unstructured to a predominantly helical conformation (>50%), with greater helicity for POPG/TOCL compared to POPE/POPG vesicles. The helical content, however, was less in the presence of live E. coli and S. aureus, 25 and 5%, respectively. Equimolar concentrations of the peptides did not appear to form greater supramolecular structures. Dye release assays showed that aurein required greater concentration than caerin and maculatin to disrupt the lipid bilayers, and mixtures of the peptides did not cooperate to enhance their lytic activity. Overall, aurein, maculatin, and caerin showed moderate synergy in antimicrobial activity against S. aureus without becoming more structured or enhancement of their membrane-disrupting activity in phospholipid vesicles.

  16. Derivatives of the mouse cathelicidin-related antimicrobial peptide (CRAMP) inhibit fungal and bacterial biofilm formation.

    PubMed

    De Brucker, Katrijn; Delattin, Nicolas; Robijns, Stijn; Steenackers, Hans; Verstraeten, Natalie; Landuyt, Bart; Luyten, Walter; Schoofs, Liliane; Dovgan, Barbara; Fröhlich, Mirjam; Michiels, Jan; Vanderleyden, Jos; Cammue, Bruno P A; Thevissen, Karin

    2014-09-01

    We identified a 26-amino-acid truncated form of the 34-amino-acid cathelicidin-related antimicrobial peptide (CRAMP) in the islets of Langerhans of the murine pancreas. This peptide, P318, shares 67% identity with the LL-37 human antimicrobial peptide. As LL-37 displays antimicrobial and antibiofilm activity, we tested antifungal and antibiofilm activity of P318 against the fungal pathogen Candida albicans. P318 shows biofilm-specific activity as it inhibits C. albicans biofilm formation at 0.15 μM without affecting planktonic survival at that concentration. Next, we tested the C. albicans biofilm-inhibitory activity of a series of truncated and alanine-substituted derivatives of P318. Based on the biofilm-inhibitory activity of these derivatives and the length of the peptides, we decided to synthesize the shortened alanine-substituted peptide at position 10 (AS10; KLKKIAQKIKNFFQKLVP). AS10 inhibited C. albicans biofilm formation at 0.22 μM and acted synergistically with amphotericin B and caspofungin against mature biofilms. AS10 also inhibited biofilm formation of different bacteria as well as of fungi and bacteria in a mixed biofilm. In addition, AS10 does not affect the viability or functionality of different cell types involved in osseointegration of an implant, pointing to the potential of AS10 for further development as a lead peptide to coat implants. Copyright © 2014, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  17. Derivatives of the Mouse Cathelicidin-Related Antimicrobial Peptide (CRAMP) Inhibit Fungal and Bacterial Biofilm Formation

    PubMed Central

    De Brucker, Katrijn; Delattin, Nicolas; Robijns, Stijn; Steenackers, Hans; Verstraeten, Natalie; Landuyt, Bart; Luyten, Walter; Schoofs, Liliane; Dovgan, Barbara; Fröhlich, Mirjam; Michiels, Jan; Vanderleyden, Jos; Thevissen, Karin

    2014-01-01

    We identified a 26-amino-acid truncated form of the 34-amino-acid cathelicidin-related antimicrobial peptide (CRAMP) in the islets of Langerhans of the murine pancreas. This peptide, P318, shares 67% identity with the LL-37 human antimicrobial peptide. As LL-37 displays antimicrobial and antibiofilm activity, we tested antifungal and antibiofilm activity of P318 against the fungal pathogen Candida albicans. P318 shows biofilm-specific activity as it inhibits C. albicans biofilm formation at 0.15 μM without affecting planktonic survival at that concentration. Next, we tested the C. albicans biofilm-inhibitory activity of a series of truncated and alanine-substituted derivatives of P318. Based on the biofilm-inhibitory activity of these derivatives and the length of the peptides, we decided to synthesize the shortened alanine-substituted peptide at position 10 (AS10; KLKKIAQKIKNFFQKLVP). AS10 inhibited C. albicans biofilm formation at 0.22 μM and acted synergistically with amphotericin B and caspofungin against mature biofilms. AS10 also inhibited biofilm formation of different bacteria as well as of fungi and bacteria in a mixed biofilm. In addition, AS10 does not affect the viability or functionality of different cell types involved in osseointegration of an implant, pointing to the potential of AS10 for further development as a lead peptide to coat implants. PMID:24982087

  18. Antimicrobial peptide diversity in the skin of the torrent frog, Amolops jingdongensis.

    PubMed

    He, Xiaoqin; Yang, Shilong; Wei, Lin; Liu, Rui; Lai, Ren; Rong, Mingqiang

    2013-02-01

    Antimicrobial peptide diversity has been found in some amphibians. The diversity of antimicrobial peptides may have resulted from the diversity of microorganisms encountered by amphibians. Peptidomics and genomics analyses were used to study antimicrobial peptide diversity in the skin secretions of the torrent frog, Amolops jingdongensis. Thirty-one antimicrobial peptides belonging to nine groups were identified in the skin secretions of this frog. Among them, there are two novel antimicrobial groups (jingdongin-1 and -2) with unique structural motifs. The other seven groups belong to known antimicrobial peptide families, namely brevinin-1, brevinin-2, odorranain-F, esculentin-2, temporin, amolopin-3, and ranacyclin. Combined with previous reports, more than 13 antimicrobial peptide groups have been identified from the genus Amolops. Most of these antimicrobial peptide groups are also found in amphibians belonging to the genus Rana or Odorrana which suggests a possible evolutionary connection among Amolops, Rana, and Odorrana. Two novel antimicrobial groups (jingdongin-1 and -2) were synthesized and their antimicrobial activities were assayed. Some of them showed strong antimicrobial abilities against microorganisms including Gram-negative and -positive bacteria, and fungi. The extreme diversity of antimicrobial peptides in the Amolops amphibians was demonstrated. In addition, several novel peptide templates were provided for antimicrobial agent design.

  19. Synthetic cationic amphiphilic α-helical peptides as antimicrobial agents.

    PubMed

    Wiradharma, Nikken; Khoe, Ulung; Hauser, Charlotte A E; Seow, See Voon; Zhang, Shuguang; Yang, Yi-Yan

    2011-03-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) secreted by the innate immune system are prevalent as the effective first-line of defense to overcome recurring microbial invasions. They have been widely accepted as the blueprints for the development of new antimicrobial agents for the treatment of drug resistant infections. However, there is also a growing concern that AMPs with a sequence that is too close to the host organism's AMP may inevitably compromise its own natural defense. In this study, we design a series of synthetic (non-natural) short α-helical AMPs to expand the arsenal of the AMP families and to gain further insights on their antimicrobial activities. These cationic and amphiphilic peptides have a general sequence of (XXYY)(n) (X: hydrophobic residue, Y: cationic residue, and n: the number of repeat units), and are designed to mimic the folding behavior of the naturally-occurring α-helical AMPs. The synthetic α-helical AMPs with 3 repeat units, (FFRR)(3), (LLRR)(3), and (LLKK)(3), are found to be more selective towards microbial cells than rat red blood cells, with minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) values that are more than 10 times lower than their 50% hemolytic concentrations (HC(50)). They are effective against Gram-positive B. subtilis and yeast C. albicans; and the studies using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) have elucidated that these peptides possess membrane-lytic activities against microbial cells. Furthermore, non-specific immune stimulation assays of a typical peptide shows negligible IFN-α, IFN-γ, and TNF-α inductions in human peripheral blood mononuclear cells, which implies additional safety aspects of the peptide for both systemic and topical use. Therefore, the peptides designed in this study can be promising antimicrobial agents against the frequently-encountered Gram-positive bacteria- or yeast-induced infections.

  20. Applications of Circular Dichroism for Structural Analysis of Gelatin and Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Gopal, Ramamourthy; Park, Jin Soon; Seo, Chang Ho; Park, Yoonkyung

    2012-01-01

    Circular dichroism (CD) is a useful technique for monitoring changes in the conformation of antimicrobial peptides or gelatin. In this study, interactions between cationic peptides and gelatin were observed without affecting the triple helical content of the gelatin, which was more strongly affected by anionic surfactant. The peptides did not adopt a secondary structure in the presence of aqueous solution or Tween 80, but a peptide secondary structure formed upon the addition of sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS). The peptides bound to the phosphate group of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and displayed an alpha-helical conformation while (KW)4 adopted a folded conformation. Further, the peptides did not specifically interact with the fungal cell wall components of mannan or laminarin. Tryptophan blue shift assay indicated that these peptides interacted with SDS, LPS, and gelatin but not with Tween 80, mannan, or laminarin. The peptides also displayed antibacterial activity against P. aeruginosa without cytotoxicity against HaCaT cells at MIC, except for HPA3NT3-analog peptide. In this study, we used a CD spectroscopic method to demonstrate the feasibility of peptide characterization in numerous environments. The CD method can thus be used as a screening method of gelatin-peptide interactions for use in wound healing applications. PMID:22489150

  1. Antimicrobial activity of the synthetic peptide Lys-a1 against oral streptococci.

    PubMed

    da Silva, Bruno Rocha; de Freitas, Victor Aragão Abreu; Carneiro, Victor Alves; Arruda, Francisco Vassiliepe Sousa; Lorenzón, Esteban Nicolás; de Aguiar, Andréa Silvia Walter; Cilli, Eduardo Maffud; Cavada, Benildo Sousa; Teixeira, Edson Holanda

    2013-04-01

    The peptide LYS-[TRP(6)]-Hy-A1 (Lys-a1) is a synthetic derivative of the peptide Hy-A1, initially isolated from the frog species Hypsiboas albopunctatus. According to previous research, it is a molecule with broad antimicrobial activity. The objective of this study was to evaluate the antimicrobial activity of the synthetic peptide Lys-a1 (KIFGAIWPLALGALKNLIK-NH2) on the planktonic and biofilm growth of oral bacteria. The methods used to evaluate antimicrobial activity include the following: determination of the minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) and minimum bactericidal concentration (MBC) in microtiter plates for growth in suspension and quantification of biomass by crystal violet staining and counting of colony forming units for biofilm growth. The microorganisms Streptococcus oralis, Streptococcus sanguinis, Streptococcus parasanguinis, Streptococcus salivarius, Streptococcus mutans and Streptococcus sobrinus were grown in Brain Heart Infusion broth at 37°C under atmospheric pressure with 10% CO2. The peptide was solubilized in 0.1% acetic acid (v/v) at various concentrations (500-1.9 μg mL(-1)). Chlorhexidine gluconate 0.12% was used as the positive control, and BHI culture medium was used as the negative control. The tested peptide demonstrated a remarkable antimicrobial effect, inhibiting the planktonic and biofilm growth of all strains tested, even at low concentrations. Thus, the peptide Lys-a1 is an important source for potential antimicrobial agents, especially for the control and prevention of microbial biofilms, which is one of the most important factors in cariogenic processes.

  2. Antimicrobial peptides from the skins of North American frogs.

    PubMed

    Conlon, J Michael; Kolodziejek, Jolanta; Nowotny, Norbert

    2009-08-01

    North America is home to anuran species belonging to the families Bufonidae, Eleutherodactylidae, Hylidae, Leiopelmatidae, Ranidae, and Scaphiopodidae but antimicrobial peptides have been identified only in skin secretions and/or skin extracts of frogs belonging to the Leiopelmatidae ("tailed frogs") and Ranidae ("true frogs"). Eight structurally-related cationic alpha-helical peptides with broad-spectrum antibacterial activity, termed ascaphins, have been isolated from specimens of Ascaphus truei (Leiopelmatidae) occupying a coastal range. Characterization of orthologous antimicrobial peptides from Ascaphus specimens occupying an inland range supports the proposal that this population should be regarded as a separate species A. montanus. Ascaphin-8 shows potential for development into a therapeutically valuable anti-infective agent. Peptides belonging to the brevinin-1, esculentin-1, esculentin-2, palustrin-1, palustrin-2, ranacyclin, ranatuerin-1, ranatuerin-2, and temporin families have been isolated from North American ranids. It is proposed that "ranalexins" represent brevinin-1 peptides that have undergone a four amino acid residue internal deletion. Current taxonomic recommendations divide North American frogs from the family Ranidae into two genera: Lithobates and Rana. Cladistic analysis based upon the amino acid sequences of the brevinin-1 peptides provides strong support for this assignment.

  3. Design and Engineering Strategies for Synthetic Antimicrobial Peptides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tossi, Alessandro

    Thousands of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) of prokaryotic, fungal, plant, or animal origin have been identified, and their potential as lead compounds for the design of novel therapeutic agents in the treatment of infection, for stimulating the immune system, or in countering septic shock has been widely recognized. Added to this is their possible use in prophylaxis of infectious diseases for animal or plant protection, for disinfection of surgical instruments or industrial surfaces, and for food preservation among other commercially important applications. Since the early eighties, AMPs have been subject to a vast number of studies aimed at understanding what determines their potency and spectrum of activities against bacterial or fungal pathogens, and at maximizing these while limiting cytotoxic activities toward host cells. Much research has also been directed toward understanding specific mechanisms of action underlying the antimicrobial activity and selectivity, to be able to redesign the peptides for optimal performance. A central theme in the mode of action of many AMPs is their dynamic interaction with biological membranes, which involves various properties of these peptides such as, among others, surface hydrophobicity and polarity, charge, structure, and induced conformational variations. These features are often intimately interconnected so that engineering peptides to independently adjust any one property in particular is not an easy task. However, solid-phase peptide synthesis allows the use of a large repertoire of nonproteinogenic amino acids that can be used in the rational design of peptides to finely tune structural and physicochemical properties and precisely probe structure-function relationships.

  4. The Medical Potential of Antimicrobial Peptides from Insects.

    PubMed

    Tonk, Miray; Vilcinskas, Andreas

    2017-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are peptide-based effector molecules produced by the innate immune system to combat microbes. Insects produce the broadest repertoire of AMPs, and their potent antimicrobial activity in vitro and in vivo has promoted their development as alternatives to conventional antibiotics, in an attempt to address the threat of multidrug-resistant pathogens. Here we discuss current obstacles that hinder the therapeutic development of novel insect-derived AMPs, including potential cytotoxic, immunogenic and allergenic side effects, and the high costs of large-scale production. These challenges may be overcome by the falling costs of synthetic peptide analogs and the heterologous production of recombinant peptides in insect cells or plants (molecular pharming). Insect AMPs offer a promising alternative for the treatment of skin, eye and lung infections, and could also restore the susceptibility of multidrug-resistant pathogens to conventional antibiotics when used as combinatorial treatments. Insect AMPs can also be used as templates for the rational design of peptide mimetics to overcome the drawbacks of natural therapeutic peptides.

  5. Epithelial Antimicrobial Peptides: Guardian of the Oral Cavity

    PubMed Central

    Hans, Mayank; Madaan Hans, Veenu

    2014-01-01

    Gingival epithelium provides first line of defence from the microorganisms present in dental plaque. It not only provides a mechanical barrier but also has an active immune function too. Gingival epithelial cells participate in innate immunity by producing a range of antimicrobial peptides to protect the host against oral pathogens. These epithelial antimicrobial peptides (EAPs) include the β-defensin family, cathelicidin (LL-37), calprotectin, and adrenomedullin. While some are constitutively expressed in gingival epithelial cells, others are induced upon exposure to microbial insults. It is likely that these EAPs have a role in determining the initiation and progression of oral diseases. EAPs are broad spectrum antimicrobials with a different but overlapping range of activity. Apart from antimicrobial activity, they participate in several other crucial roles in host tissues. Some of these, for instance, β-defensins, are chemotactic to immune cells. Others, such as calprotectin are important for wound healing and cell proliferation. Adrenomedullin, a multifunctional peptide, has its biological action in a wide range of tissues. Not only is it a potent vasodilator but also it has several endocrine effects. Knowing in detail the various bioactions of these EAPs may provide us with useful information regarding their utility as therapeutic agents. PMID:25435884

  6. Designed low amphipathic peptides with alpha-helical propensity exhibiting antimicrobial activity via a lipid domain formation mechanism.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Naoki; Tamura, Atsuo

    2010-05-01

    Although several low amphipathic peptides have been known to exhibit antimicrobial activity, their mode of action has not been completely elucidated. In this study, using designed low amphipathic peptides that retain different alpha-helical content and hydrophobicity, we attempted to investigate the mechanism of these properties. Calorimetric and thermodynamic analyses demonstrated that the peptides induce formation of two lipid domains in an anionic liposome at a high peptide-to-lipid ratio. On the other hand, even at a low peptide-to-lipid ratio, they caused minimal membrane damage, such as flip-flop of membrane lipids or leakage of calcein molecules from liposomes, and never translocated across membranes. Interaction energies between the peptides and anionic liposomes showed good correlation with antimicrobial activity for both Escherichia coli and Bacillus subtilis. We thus propose that the domain formation mechanism in which antimicrobial peptides exhibit activity solely by forming lipid domains without membrane damage is a major determinant of the antimicrobial activity of low amphipathic peptides. These peptides appear to stiffen the membrane such that it is deprived of the fluidity necessary for biological functions. We also showed that to construct the lipid domains, peptides need not form stable and cooperative structures. Rather, it is essential for peptides to only interact tightly with the membrane interface via strong electrostatic interactions, and slight differences in binding strength are invoked by differences in hydrophobicity. The peptides thus designed might pave the way for "clean" antimicrobial reagents that never cause release of membrane elements and efflux of their inner components.

  7. A Fourier transformation based method to mine peptide space for antimicrobial activity.

    PubMed

    Nagarajan, Vijayaraj; Kaushik, Navodit; Murali, Beddhu; Zhang, Chaoyang; Lakhera, Sanyogita; Elasri, Mohamed O; Deng, Youping

    2006-09-26

    Naturally occurring antimicrobial peptides are currently being explored as potential candidate peptide drugs. Since antimicrobial peptides are part of the innate immune system of every living organism, it is possible to discover new candidate peptides using the available genomic and proteomic data. High throughput computational techniques could also be used to virtually scan the entire peptide space for discovering out new candidate antimicrobial peptides. We have identified a unique indexing method based on biologically distinct characteristic features of known antimicrobial peptides. Analysis of the entries in the antimicrobial peptide databases, based on our indexing method, using Fourier transformation technique revealed a distinct peak in their power spectrum. We have developed a method to mine the genomic and proteomic data, for the presence of peptides with potential antimicrobial activity, by looking for this distinct peak. We also used the Euclidean metric to rank the potential antimicrobial peptides activity. We have parallelized our method so that virtually any given protein space could be data mined, in search of antimicrobial peptides. The results show that the Fourier transform based method with the property based coding strategy could be used to scan the peptide space for discovering new potential antimicrobial peptides.

  8. The role of antimicrobial peptides in animal defenses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hancock, Robert E. W.; Scott, Monisha G.

    2000-08-01

    It is becoming clear that the cationic antimicrobial peptides are an important component of the innate defenses of all species of life. Such peptides can be constitutively expressed or induced by bacteria or their products. The best peptides have good activities vs. a broad range of bacterial strains, including antibiotic-resistant isolates. They kill very rapidly, do not easily select resistant mutants, are synergistic with conventional antibiotics, other peptides, and lysozyme, and are able to kill bacteria in animal models. It is known that bacterial infections, especially when treated with antibiotics, can lead to the release of bacterial products such as lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and lipoteichoic acid, resulting in potentially lethal sepsis. In contrast to antibiotics, the peptides actually prevent cytokine induction by bacterial products in tissue culture and human blood, and they block the onset of sepsis in mouse models of endotoxemia. Consistent with this, transcriptional gene array experiments using a macrophage cell line demonstrated that a model peptide, CEMA, blocks the expression of many genes whose transcription was induced by LPS. The peptides do this in part by blocking LPS interaction with the serum protein LBP. In addition, CEMA itself has a direct effect on macrophage gene expression. Because cationic antimicrobial peptides are induced by LPS and are able to dampen the septic response of animal cells to LPS, we propose that, in addition to their role in direct and lysozyme-assisted killing of microbes, they have a role in feedback regulation of cytokine responses. We are currently developing variant peptides as therapeutics against antibiotic-resistant infections.

  9. The role of antimicrobial peptides in animal defenses.

    PubMed

    Hancock, R E; Scott, M G

    2000-08-01

    It is becoming clear that the cationic antimicrobial peptides are an important component of the innate defenses of all species of life. Such peptides can be constitutively expressed or induced by bacteria or their products. The best peptides have good activities vs. a broad range of bacterial strains, including antibiotic-resistant isolates. They kill very rapidly, do not easily select resistant mutants, are synergistic with conventional antibiotics, other peptides, and lysozyme, and are able to kill bacteria in animal models. It is known that bacterial infections, especially when treated with antibiotics, can lead to the release of bacterial products such as lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and lipoteichoic acid, resulting in potentially lethal sepsis. In contrast to antibiotics, the peptides actually prevent cytokine induction by bacterial products in tissue culture and human blood, and they block the onset of sepsis in mouse models of endotoxemia. Consistent with this, transcriptional gene array experiments using a macrophage cell line demonstrated that a model peptide, CEMA, blocks the expression of many genes whose transcription was induced by LPS. The peptides do this in part by blocking LPS interaction with the serum protein LBP. In addition, CEMA itself has a direct effect on macrophage gene expression. Because cationic antimicrobial peptides are induced by LPS and are able to dampen the septic response of animal cells to LPS, we propose that, in addition to their role in direct and lysozyme-assisted killing of microbes, they have a role in feedback regulation of cytokine responses. We are currently developing variant peptides as therapeutics against antibiotic-resistant infections.

  10. The role of antimicrobial peptides in animal defenses

    PubMed Central

    Hancock, Robert E. W.; Scott, Monisha G.

    2000-01-01

    It is becoming clear that the cationic antimicrobial peptides are an important component of the innate defenses of all species of life. Such peptides can be constitutively expressed or induced by bacteria or their products. The best peptides have good activities vs. a broad range of bacterial strains, including antibiotic-resistant isolates. They kill very rapidly, do not easily select resistant mutants, are synergistic with conventional antibiotics, other peptides, and lysozyme, and are able to kill bacteria in animal models. It is known that bacterial infections, especially when treated with antibiotics, can lead to the release of bacterial products such as lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and lipoteichoic acid, resulting in potentially lethal sepsis. In contrast to antibiotics, the peptides actually prevent cytokine induction by bacterial products in tissue culture and human blood, and they block the onset of sepsis in mouse models of endotoxemia. Consistent with this, transcriptional gene array experiments using a macrophage cell line demonstrated that a model peptide, CEMA, blocks the expression of many genes whose transcription was induced by LPS. The peptides do this in part by blocking LPS interaction with the serum protein LBP. In addition, CEMA itself has a direct effect on macrophage gene expression. Because cationic antimicrobial peptides are induced by LPS and are able to dampen the septic response of animal cells to LPS, we propose that, in addition to their role in direct and lysozyme-assisted killing of microbes, they have a role in feedback regulation of cytokine responses. We are currently developing variant peptides as therapeutics against antibiotic-resistant infections. PMID:10922046

  11. Defensins and Other Antimicrobial Peptides at the Ocular Surface

    PubMed Central

    McDermott, Alison M.

    2006-01-01

    Although constantly exposed to the environment and “foreign bodies” such as contact lenses and unwashed fingertips, the ocular surface succumbs to infection relatively infrequently. This is, in large part, due to a very active and robust innate immune response mounted at the ocular surface. Studies over the past 20 years have revealed that small peptides with antimicrobial activity are a major component of the human innate immune response system. The ocular surface is no exception, with peptides of the defensin and cathelicidin families being detected in the tear film and secreted by corneal and conjunctival epithelial cells. There is also much evidence to suggest that the role of some antimicrobial peptides is not restricted to direct killing of pathogens, but, rather, that they function in various aspects of the immune response, including recruitment of immune cells, and through actions on dendritic cells provide a link to adaptive immunity. A role in wound healing is also supported. In this article, the properties, mechanisms of actions and functional roles of antimicrobial peptides are reviewed, with particular emphasis on the potential multifunctional roles of defensins and LL-37 (the only known human cathelicidin) at the ocular surface. PMID:17216098

  12. Killer peptide: a novel paradigm of antimicrobial, antiviral and immunomodulatory auto-delivering drugs.

    PubMed

    Magliani, Walter; Conti, Stefania; Ciociola, Tecla; Giovati, Laura; Zanello, Pier Paolo; Pertinhez, Thelma; Spisni, Alberto; Polonelli, Luciano

    2011-07-01

    The incidence of life-threatening viral and microbial infections has dramatically increased over recent decades. Despite significant developments in anti-infective chemotherapy, many issues have increasingly narrowed the therapeutic options, making it imperative to discover new effective molecules. Among them, small peptides are arousing great interest. This review will focus in particular on a killer peptide, engineered from an anti-idiotypic recombinant antibody that mimics the activity of a wide-spectrum antimicrobial yeast killer toxin targeting β-glucan cell-wall receptors. The in vitro and in vivo antimicrobial, antiviral and immunomodulatory activities of killer peptide and its ability to spontaneously and reversibly self-assemble and slowly release its active dimeric form over time will be discussed as a novel paradigm of targeted auto-delivering drugs.

  13. Mechanisms of Antimicrobial Peptide Resistance in Gram-Negative Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Band, Victor I.; Weiss, David S.

    2014-01-01

    Cationic antimicrobial peptides (CAMPs) are important innate immune defenses that inhibit colonization by pathogens and contribute to clearance of infections. Gram-negative bacterial pathogens are a major target, yet many of them have evolved mechanisms to resist these antimicrobials. These resistance mechanisms can be critical contributors to bacterial virulence and are often crucial for survival within the host. Here, we summarize methods used by Gram-negative bacteria to resist CAMPs. Understanding these mechanisms may lead to new therapeutic strategies against pathogens with extensive CAMP resistance. PMID:25927010

  14. Mechanisms of Antimicrobial Peptide Resistance in Gram-Negative Bacteria.

    PubMed

    Band, Victor I; Weiss, David S

    2015-03-01

    Cationic antimicrobial peptides (CAMPs) are important innate immune defenses that inhibit colonization by pathogens and contribute to clearance of infections. Gram-negative bacterial pathogens are a major target, yet many of them have evolved mechanisms to resist these antimicrobials. These resistance mechanisms can be critical contributors to bacterial virulence and are often crucial for survival within the host. Here, we summarize methods used by Gram-negative bacteria to resist CAMPs. Understanding these mechanisms may lead to new therapeutic strategies against pathogens with extensive CAMP resistance.

  15. The therapeutic applications of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs): a patent review.

    PubMed

    Kang, Hee-Kyoung; Kim, Cheolmin; Seo, Chang Ho; Park, Yoonkyung

    2017-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are small molecules with a broad spectrum of antibiotic activities against bacteria, yeasts, fungi, and viruses and cytotoxic activity on cancer cells, in addition to anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory activities. Therefore, AMPs have garnered interest as novel therapeutic agents. Because of the rapid increase in drug-resistant pathogenic microorganisms, AMPs from synthetic and natural sources have been developed using alternative antimicrobial strategies. This article presents a broad analysis of patents referring to the therapeutic applications of AMPs since 2009. The review focuses on the universal trends in the effective design, mechanism, and biological evolution of AMPs.

  16. Small cationic antimicrobial peptides delocalize peripheral membrane proteins

    PubMed Central

    Wenzel, Michaela; Chiriac, Alina Iulia; Otto, Andreas; Zweytick, Dagmar; May, Caroline; Schumacher, Catherine; Gust, Ronald; Albada, H. Bauke; Penkova, Maya; Krämer, Ute; Erdmann, Ralf; Metzler-Nolte, Nils; Straus, Suzana K.; Bremer, Erhard; Becher, Dörte; Brötz-Oesterhelt, Heike; Sahl, Hans-Georg; Bandow, Julia Elisabeth

    2014-01-01

    Short antimicrobial peptides rich in arginine (R) and tryptophan (W) interact with membranes. To learn how this interaction leads to bacterial death, we characterized the effects of the minimal pharmacophore RWRWRW-NH2. A ruthenium-substituted derivative of this peptide localized to the membrane in vivo, and the peptide also integrated readily into mixed phospholipid bilayers that resemble Gram-positive membranes. Proteome and Western blot analyses showed that integration of the peptide caused delocalization of peripheral membrane proteins essential for respiration and cell-wall biosynthesis, limiting cellular energy and undermining cell-wall integrity. This delocalization phenomenon also was observed with the cyclic peptide gramicidin S, indicating the generality of the mechanism. Exogenous glutamate increases tolerance to the peptide, indicating that osmotic destabilization also contributes to antibacterial efficacy. Bacillus subtilis responds to peptide stress by releasing osmoprotective amino acids, in part via mechanosensitive channels. This response is triggered by membrane-targeting bacteriolytic peptides of different structural classes as well as by hypoosmotic conditions. PMID:24706874

  17. Lipid membrane structure and dynamics in the presence of tamoxifen and antimicrobial peptides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hebenstreit, Samuel; Khadka, Nawal; Pan, Jianjun

    2015-03-01

    Lipids are organic molecules composed of hydrophobic fatty acid tails and hydrophilic head groups that can form a multitude of structures, including lipid vesicles which provides an excellent model representing cell membranes. In this study, we examine the effects of antimicrobial peptides and drugs on lipid vesicles. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy measurements are performed with and without the antimicrobial peptide. A change in absorbance corresponding to the wavenumber regimes associated with the stretching of the carbonyl and phosphate groups is observed. Also, a dye leakage assay is performed with vesicles composed of neutral and charged lipids. Calcein dye is enclosed within these vesicles in solution. Different concentrations of the active and inactive antimicrobial peptides, and tamoxifen are incubated with the vesicles. Concentration dependent dye leakage is determined by measuring fluorescence intensity before and after the addition of the peptides and tamoxifen. Different leakage behavior is observed for the active and inactive peptides, and the lipid composition of the vesicle is found to have a large effect. Supported by an NSF grant.

  18. Correlation of charge, hydrophobicity, and structure with antimicrobial activity of S1 and MIRIAM peptides.

    PubMed

    Leptihn, Sebastian; Har, Jia Yi; Wohland, Thorsten; Ding, Jeak Ling

    2010-11-02

    Antimicrobial peptides are key elements of the innate immune system. Many of them interact with membranes of bacteria leading to perturbation of the lipid bilayer and eventually to inactivation of the pathogen. The emergence of multidrug-resistant bacteria has necessitated innovations of new and more powerful classes of antimicrobials. Here we present the in-depth study of an antimicrobial peptide, MIRIAM, derived from Sushi1 (S1), a well-characterized peptide from the horseshoe crab. MIRIAM interacts strongly with negatively charged lipids, forming an α-helical structure. MIRIAM was found to neutralize LPS and kill Gram-negative bacteria with high efficiency, while not releasing LPS. The promising therapeutic potential of MIRIAM is shown by hemolytic assays, which demonstrate that eukaryotic membranes are unaffected at bactericidal concentrations. Nanoparticle-conjugated MIRIAM used in single-molecule fluorescence and electron microscopy experiments showed that MIRIAM targets bacterial membranes to kill bacteria similarly to parental S1. Furthermore, fragments derived from MIRIAM and S1 provided insights on their molecular mechanisms of action, in particular, the relationships of functional motifs comprised by charge, hydrophobicity, and structure within each peptide. We conclude that the combination of charge, hydrophobicity, and length of the peptide is important. A close interaction of amino acids in a single molecule in a carefully balanced ensemble of sequence position and secondary structure is crucial.

  19. Antimicrobial and host-defense peptides as new anti-infective therapeutic strategies.

    PubMed

    Hancock, Robert E W; Sahl, Hans-Georg

    2006-12-01

    Short cationic amphiphilic peptides with antimicrobial and/or immunomodulatory activities are present in virtually every life form, as an important component of (innate) immune defenses. These host-defense peptides provide a template for two separate classes of antimicrobial drugs. Direct-acting antimicrobial host-defense peptides can be rapid-acting and potent, and possess an unusually broad spectrum of activity; consequently, they have prospects as new antibiotics, although clinical trials to date have shown efficacy only as topical agents. But for these compounds to fulfill their therapeutic promise and overcome clinical setbacks, further work is needed to understand their mechanisms of action and reduce the potential for unwanted toxicity, to make them more resistant to protease degradation and improve serum half-life, as well as to devise means of manufacturing them on a large scale in a consistent and cost-effective manner. In contrast, the role of cationic host-defense peptides in modulating the innate immune response and boosting infection-resolving immunity while dampening potentially harmful pro-inflammatory (septic) responses gives these peptides the potential to become an entirely new therapeutic approach against bacterial infections.

  20. Peptides from the scorpion Vaejovis punctatus with broad antimicrobial activity.

    PubMed

    Ramírez-Carreto, Santos; Jiménez-Vargas, Juana María; Rivas-Santiago, Bruno; Corzo, Gerardo; Possani, Lourival D; Becerril, Baltazar; Ortiz, Ernesto

    2015-11-01

    The antimicrobial potential of two new non-disulfide bound peptides, named VpAmp1.0 (LPFFLLSLIPSAISAIKKI, amidated) and VpAmp2.0 (FWGFLGKLAMKAVPSLIGGNKSSSK) is here reported. These are 19- and 25-aminoacid-long peptides with +2 and +4 net charges, respectively. Their sequences correspond to the predicted mature regions from longer precursors, putatively encoded by cDNAs derived from the venom glands of the Mexican scorpion Vaejovis punctatus. Both peptides were chemically synthesized and assayed against a variety of microorganisms, including pathogenic strains from clinical isolates and strains resistant to conventional antibiotics. Two shorter variants, named VpAmp1.1 (FFLLSLIPSAISAIKKI, amidated) and VpAmp2.1 (FWGFLGKLAMKAVPSLIGGNKK), were also synthesized and tested. The antimicrobial assays revealed that the four synthetic peptides effectively inhibit the growth of both Gram-positive (Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus agalactiaea) and Gram-negative (Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa) bacteria, with MICs in the range of 2.5-24.0 μM; yeasts (Candida albicans and Candida glabrata) with MICs of 3.1-50.0 μM; and two clinically isolated strains of Mycobacterium tuberculosis-including a multi-drug resistant one- with MICs in the range of 4.8-30.5 μM. A comparison between the activities of the original peptides and their derivatives gives insight into the structural/functional role of their distinctive residues.

  1. Boosting Antimicrobial Peptides by Hydrophobic Oligopeptide End Tags*

    PubMed Central

    Schmidtchen, Artur; Pasupuleti, Mukesh; Mörgelin, Matthias; Davoudi, Mina; Alenfall, Jan; Chalupka, Anna; Malmsten, Martin

    2009-01-01

    A novel approach for boosting antimicrobial peptides through end tagging with hydrophobic oligopeptide stretches is demonstrated. Focusing on two peptides derived from kininogen, GKHKNKGKKNGKHNGWK (GKH17) and HKHGHGHGKHKNKGKKN (HKH17), tagging resulted in enhanced killing of Gram-positive Staphylococcus aureus, Gram-negative Escherichia coli, and fungal Candida albicans. Microbicidal potency increased with tag length, also in plasma, and was larger for Trp and Phe stretches than for aliphatic ones. The enhanced microbicidal effects correlated to a higher degree of bacterial wall rupture. Analogously, tagging promoted peptide binding to model phospholipid membranes and liposome rupture, particularly for anionic and cholesterol-void membranes. Tagged peptides displayed low toxicity, particularly in the presence of serum, and resisted degradation by human leukocyte elastase and by staphylococcal aureolysin and V8 proteinase. The biological relevance of these findings was demonstrated ex vivo and in vivo in porcine S. aureus skin infection models. The generality of end tagging for facile boosting of antimicrobial peptides without the need for post-synthesis modification was also demonstrated. PMID:19398550

  2. Antimicrobial Peptides Derived from Fusion Peptides of Influenza A Viruses, a Promising Approach to Designing Potent Antimicrobial Agents.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jingyu; Zhong, Wenjing; Lin, Dongguo; Xia, Fan; Wu, Wenjiao; Zhang, Heyuan; Lv, Lin; Liu, Shuwen; He, Jian

    2015-10-01

    The emergence and dissemination of antibiotic-resistant bacterial pathogens have spurred the urgent need to develop novel antimicrobial agents with different mode of action. In this respect, we turned several fusogenic peptides (FPs) derived from the hemagglutinin glycoproteins (HAs) of IAV into potent antibacterials by replacing the negatively or neutrally charged residues of FPs with positively charged lysines. Their antibacterial activities were evaluated by testing the MICs against a panel of bacterial strains including S. aureus, S. mutans, P. aeruginosa, and E. coli. The results showed that peptides HA-FP-1, HA-FP-2-1, and HA-FP-3-1 were effective against both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria with MICs ranging from 1.9 to 16.0 μm, while the toxicities toward mammalian cells were low. In addition, the mode of action and the secondary structure of these peptides were also discussed. These data not only provide several potent peptides displaying promising potential in development as broad antimicrobial agents, but also present a useful strategy in designing new antimicrobial agents.

  3. Characterization of antimicrobial activity and mechanisms of low amphipathic peptides with different α-helical propensity.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Xin; Zhang, Licong; Wang, Jue; Ma, Zhi; Xu, Wei; Li, Jianping; Shan, Anshan

    2015-05-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) serve as a defense mechanism within multicellular organisms and are attracting increasing attention because of their potential application in the treatment of multidrug-resistant infections. Amphipathicity has long been believed to be the most important consideration for the structural modification and design of both naturally occurring and synthetic AMPs. Previous studies indicated that disruptive amphipathicity formed by replacing the paired charged amino acid residues on the polar face of an amphipathic helix with tryptophan residues linked with hydrogen bonds on the basis of α-helical protein folding principles endowed the AMPs with increased cell selectivity. In an attempt to augment and hone this strategy further, we designed a series of imperfect amphipathic peptides by placing different types of amino acid residues at the hydrogen bond linked positions of α-helix structures to characterize their antimicrobial properties and mechanism of action. The d-Trp-substituted sequence (PRW4-d) showed greater antimicrobial potency than Cys-(C4), Asp-(D4), Ile-(I4), and Pro-(P4) substituted sequences, comparable to the l-Trp-substituted parent sequence (PRW4). Furthermore, the total replacement of Lys residues with Arg residues along the peptide sequence (PRW4-R) exhibited enhanced antimicrobial activity and cell selectivity. In addition, no cytotoxicity was observed among these synthetic peptides. PRW4-d and PRW4-R maintained their activities in the presence of physiological salts and human serum. The fluorescence spectroscopy, flow cytometry, and electron microscopy observations indicated that the optimized sequences exhibited excellent antimicrobial potency by inducing cytoplasmic membrane potential loss, membrane permeabilization and disruption. Collectively, the results could be useful for designing short AMPs with great antimicrobial activity and cell selectivity.

  4. Protein-only, antimicrobial peptide-containing recombinant nanoparticles with inherent built-in antibacterial activity.

    PubMed

    Serna, Naroa; Sánchez-García, Laura; Sánchez-Chardi, Alejandro; Unzueta, Ugutz; Roldán, Mónica; Mangues, Ramón; Vázquez, Esther; Villaverde, Antonio

    2017-09-15

    The emergence of bacterial antibiotic resistances is a serious concern in human and animal health. In this context, naturally occurring cationic antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) might play a main role in a next generation of drugs against bacterial infections. Taking an innovative approach to design self-organizing functional proteins, we have generated here protein-only nanoparticles with intrinsic AMP microbicide activity. Using a recombinant version of the GWH1 antimicrobial peptide as building block, these materials show a wide antibacterial activity spectrum in absence of detectable toxicity on mammalian cells. The GWH1-based nanoparticles combine clinically appealing properties of nanoscale materials with full biocompatibility, structural and functional plasticity and biological efficacy exhibited by proteins. Because of the largely implemented biological fabrication of recombinant protein drugs, the protein-based platform presented here represents a novel and scalable strategy in antimicrobial drug design, that by solving some of the limitations of AMPs offers a promising alternative to conventional antibiotics. The low molecular weight antimicrobial peptide GWH1 has been engineered to oligomerize as self-assembling protein-only nanoparticles of around 50nm. In this form, the peptide exhibits potent and broad antibacterial activities against both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, without any harmful effect over mammalian cells. As a solid proof-of-concept, this finding strongly supports the design and biofabrication of nanoscale antimicrobial materials with in-built functionalities. The protein-based homogeneous composition offer advantages over alternative materials explored as antimicrobial agents, regarding biocompatibility, biodegradability and environmental suitability. Beyond the described prototype, this transversal engineering concept has wide applicability in the design of novel nanomedicines for advanced treatments of bacterial infections

  5. Antimicrobial peptides and proteins of the horse - insights into a well-armed organism

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides play a pivotal role as key effectors of the innate immune system in plants and animals and act as endogenous antibiotics. The molecules exhibit an antimicrobial activity against bacteria, viruses, and eukaryotic pathogens with different specificities and potencies depending on the structure and amino-acid composition of the peptides. Several antimicrobial peptides were comprehensively investigated in the last three decades and some molecules with remarkable antimicrobial properties have reached the third phase of clinical studies. Next to the peptides themselves, numerous organisms were examined and analyzed regarding their repertoire of antimicrobial peptides revealing a huge number of candidates with potencies and properties for future medical applications. One of these organisms is the horse, which possesses numerous peptides that are interesting candidates for therapeutical applications in veterinary medicine. Here we summarize investigations and knowledge on equine antimicrobial peptides, point to interesting candidates, and discuss prospects for therapeutical applications. PMID:21888650

  6. Antimicrobial peptides as natural bio-preservative to enhance the shelf-life of food.

    PubMed

    Rai, Mahendra; Pandit, Raksha; Gaikwad, Swapnil; Kövics, György

    2016-09-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are diverse group of natural proteins present in animals, plants, insects and bacteria. These peptides are responsible for defense of host from pathogenic organisms. Chemical, enzymatic and recombinant techniques are used for the synthesis of antimicrobial peptides. These peptides have been found to be an alternative to the chemical preservatives. Currently, nisin is the only antimicrobial peptide, which is widely utilized in the preservation of food. Antimicrobial peptides can be used alone or in combination with other antimicrobial, essential oils and polymeric nanoparticles to enhance the shelf-life of food. This review presents an overview on different types of antimicrobial peptides, purification techniques, mode of action and application in food preservation.

  7. Antimicrobial peptide precursor structures suggest effective production strategies.

    PubMed

    Vassilevski, Alexander A; Kozlov, Sergey A; Grishin, Eugene V

    2008-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) constitute a diverse group of compounds that serve a common goal that is host organism defense from infection. Due to their antimicrobial properties, these molecules attract practical interest as potential antibiotics for medical and veterinary use as well as enhancers of plant disease resistance for agriculture. Broad AMP utilization is restricted by the expensiveness of their production using conventional chemical synthesis. For this reason, a number of chimeric genes have been developed for recombinant AMP production in prokaryotes. However, recombinant peptide instability and/or high toxicity to host cells dramatically reduce the yields. In this paper, we review patented strategies of fusion protein design for AMP production. In several cases, the proposed strategies clearly mimic the organization of natural AMP precursor proteins. We describe the main principals of natural AMP precursor organization and fusion constructs adopted and/or artificially designed by man.

  8. Salivary Antimicrobial Peptides in Early Detection of Periodontitis

    PubMed Central

    Güncü, Güliz N.; Yilmaz, Dogukan; Könönen, Eija; Gürsoy, Ulvi K.

    2015-01-01

    In the pathogenesis of periodontitis, an infection-induced inflammatory disease of the tooth-supporting tissues, there is a complex interaction between the subgingival microbiota and host tissues. A periodontal diagnostic tool for detecting the initiation and progression of the disease, monitoring the response to therapy, or measuring the degree of susceptibility to future disease progression has been of interest for a long time. The value of various enzymes, proteins, and immunoglobulins, which are abundant constituents of saliva, as potential biomarkers has been recognized and extensively investigated for periodontal diseases. Gingival defensins and cathelicidins are small cationic antimicrobial peptides that play an important role in innate immune response. However, their applicability as salivary biomarkers is still under debate. The present review focuses on proteomic biomarkers and antimicrobial peptides, in particular, to be used at early phases of periodontitis. PMID:26734583

  9. Five novel antimicrobial peptides from the Kuhl's wart frog skin secretions, Limnonectes kuhlii.

    PubMed

    Wang, Guoxiang; Wang, Ying; Ma, Dongying; Liu, Huan; Li, Jianxu; Zhang, Keyun; Yang, Xiaolong; Lai, Ren; Liu, Jingze

    2013-02-01

    Five novel antimicrobial peptides (temporin-LK1, rugosin-LK1, rugosin-LK2, gaegurin-LK1, and gaegurin-LK2) are purified and characterized from Kuhl's wart frog skin secretions, Limnonectes kuhlii. They share obvious similarity to temporin, rugosin, and gaegurin antimicrobial peptide family, respectively. Their amino acid sequences were determined by Edman degradation and mass spectrometry, and further confirmed by cDNA cloning. Nine cDNA sequences encoding precursors of these five purified antimicrobial peptides and other four hypothetical antimicrobial peptides were cloned from the skin cDNA library of L. kuhlii. The deduced precursors are composed of a predicted signal peptide, an acidic spacer peptide, and a mature antimicrobial peptide. Most of them showed strong antimicrobial activities against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria and fungi. The current work identified and characterized three families of antimicrobial peptides from L. kuhlii skins and confirmed that the genus of Limnonectes amphibians share similar antimicrobial peptide families with the genus of Rana amphibians. In addition, a unique antimicrobial peptide (temporin-LK1) with 17 residues including four phenylalanines, which is significantly different from other temporins (16 residues, one or two phenylalanines), was identified in this work. Such unique structure might provide novel template or leading structure to design antimicrobial agents.

  10. Potential Use of Antimicrobial Peptides as Vaginal Spermicides/Microbicides

    PubMed Central

    Tanphaichitr, Nongnuj; Srakaew, Nopparat; Alonzi, Rhea; Kiattiburut, Wongsakorn; Kongmanas, Kessiri; Zhi, Ruina; Li, Weihua; Baker, Mark; Wang, Guanshun; Hickling, Duane

    2016-01-01

    The concurrent increases in global population and sexually transmitted infection (STI) demand a search for agents with dual spermicidal and microbicidal properties for topical vaginal application. Previous attempts to develop the surfactant spermicide, nonoxynol-9 (N-9), into a vaginal microbicide were unsuccessful largely due to its inefficiency to kill microbes. Furthermore, N-9 causes damage to the vaginal epithelium, thus accelerating microbes to enter the women’s body. For this reason, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), naturally secreted by all forms of life as part of innate immunity, deserve evaluation for their potential spermicidal effects. To date, twelve spermicidal AMPs have been described including LL-37, magainin 2 and nisin A. Human cathelicidin LL-37 is the most promising spermicidal AMP to be further developed for vaginal use for the following reasons. First, it is a human AMP naturally produced in the vagina after intercourse. Second, LL-37 exerts microbicidal effects to numerous microbes including those that cause STI. Third, its cytotoxicity is selective to sperm and not to the female reproductive tract. Furthermore, the spermicidal effects of LL-37 have been demonstrated in vivo in mice. Therefore, the availability of LL-37 as a vaginal spermicide/microbicide will empower women for self-protection against unwanted pregnancies and STI. PMID:26978373

  11. Potential Use of Antimicrobial Peptides as Vaginal Spermicides/Microbicides.

    PubMed

    Tanphaichitr, Nongnuj; Srakaew, Nopparat; Alonzi, Rhea; Kiattiburut, Wongsakorn; Kongmanas, Kessiri; Zhi, Ruina; Li, Weihua; Baker, Mark; Wang, Guanshun; Hickling, Duane

    2016-03-11

    The concurrent increases in global population and sexually transmitted infection (STI) demand a search for agents with dual spermicidal and microbicidal properties for topical vaginal application. Previous attempts to develop the surfactant spermicide, nonoxynol-9 (N-9), into a vaginal microbicide were unsuccessful largely due to its inefficiency to kill microbes. Furthermore, N-9 causes damage to the vaginal epithelium, thus accelerating microbes to enter the women's body. For this reason, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), naturally secreted by all forms of life as part of innate immunity, deserve evaluation for their potential spermicidal effects. To date, twelve spermicidal AMPs have been described including LL-37, magainin 2 and nisin A. Human cathelicidin LL-37 is the most promising spermicidal AMP to be further developed for vaginal use for the following reasons. First, it is a human AMP naturally produced in the vagina after intercourse. Second, LL-37 exerts microbicidal effects to numerous microbes including those that cause STI. Third, its cytotoxicity is selective to sperm and not to the female reproductive tract. Furthermore, the spermicidal effects of LL-37 have been demonstrated in vivo in mice. Therefore, the availability of LL-37 as a vaginal spermicide/microbicide will empower women for self-protection against unwanted pregnancies and STI.

  12. Context mediates antimicrobial efficacy of kinocidin congener peptide RP-1.

    PubMed

    Yount, Nannette Y; Cohen, Samuel E; Kupferwasser, Deborah; Waring, Alan J; Ruchala, Piotr; Sharma, Shantanu; Wasserman, Karlman; Jung, Chun-Ling; Yeaman, Michael R

    2011-01-01

    Structure-mechanism relationships are key determinants of host defense peptide efficacy. These relationships are influenced by anatomic, physiologic and microbiologic contexts. Structure-mechanism correlates were assessed for the synthetic peptide RP-1, modeled on microbicidal domains of platelet kinocidins. Antimicrobial efficacies and mechanisms of action against susceptible ((S)) or resistant ((R)) Salmonella typhimurium (ST), Staphylococcus aureus (SA), and Candida albicans (CA) strain pairs were studied at pH 7.5 and 5.5. Although RP-1 was active against all study organisms, it exhibited greater efficacy against bacteria at pH 7.5, but greater efficacy against CA at pH 5.5. RP-1 de-energized SA and CA, but caused hyperpolarization of ST in both pH conditions. However, RP-1 permeabilized ST(S) and CA strains at both pH, whereas permeabilization was modest for ST(R) or SA strain at either pH. Biochemical analysis, molecular modeling, and FTIR spectroscopy data revealed that RP-1 has indistinguishable net charge and backbone trajectories at pH 5.5 and 7.5. Yet, concordant with organism-specific efficacy, surface plasmon resonance, and FTIR, molecular dynamics revealed modest helical order increases but greater RP-1 avidity and penetration of bacterial than eukaryotic lipid systems, particularly at pH 7.5. The present findings suggest that pH- and target-cell lipid contexts influence selective antimicrobial efficacy and mechanisms of RP-1 action. These findings offer new insights into selective antimicrobial efficacy and context-specificity of antimicrobial peptides in host defense, and support design strategies for potent anti-infective peptides with minimal concomitant cytotoxicity.

  13. Context Mediates Antimicrobial Efficacy of Kinocidin Congener Peptide RP-1

    PubMed Central

    Yount, Nannette Y.; Cohen, Samuel E.; Kupferwasser, Deborah; Waring, Alan J.; Ruchala, Piotr; Sharma, Shantanu; Wasserman, Karlman; Jung, Chun-Ling; Yeaman, Michael R.

    2011-01-01

    Structure-mechanism relationships are key determinants of host defense peptide efficacy. These relationships are influenced by anatomic, physiologic and microbiologic contexts. Structure-mechanism correlates were assessed for the synthetic peptide RP-1, modeled on microbicidal domains of platelet kinocidins. Antimicrobial efficacies and mechanisms of action against susceptible (S) or resistant (R) Salmonella typhimurium (ST), Staphylococcus aureus (SA), and Candida albicans (CA) strain pairs were studied at pH 7.5 and 5.5. Although RP-1 was active against all study organisms, it exhibited greater efficacy against bacteria at pH 7.5, but greater efficacy against CA at pH 5.5. RP-1 de-energized SA and CA, but caused hyperpolarization of ST in both pH conditions. However, RP-1 permeabilized STS and CA strains at both pH, whereas permeabilization was modest for STR or SA strain at either pH. Biochemical analysis, molecular modeling, and FTIR spectroscopy data revealed that RP-1 has indistinguishable net charge and backbone trajectories at pH 5.5 and 7.5. Yet, concordant with organism-specific efficacy, surface plasmon resonance, and FTIR, molecular dynamics revealed modest helical order increases but greater RP-1 avidity and penetration of bacterial than eukaryotic lipid systems, particularly at pH 7.5. The present findings suggest that pH– and target–cell lipid contexts influence selective antimicrobial efficacy and mechanisms of RP-1 action. These findings offer new insights into selective antimicrobial efficacy and context–specificity of antimicrobial peptides in host defense, and support design strategies for potent anti-infective peptides with minimal concomitant cytotoxicity. PMID:22073187

  14. A novel amphipathic linear peptide with both insect toxicity and antimicrobial activity from the venom of the scorpion Isometrus maculatus.

    PubMed

    Miyashita, Masahiro; Sakai, Atsushi; Matsushita, Nobuto; Hanai, Yosuke; Nakagawa, Yoshiaki; Miyagawa, Hisashi

    2010-01-01

    Scorpion venoms are composed of a number of peptides, many of which show neurotoxicity. In addition to these neurotoxins, several antimicrobial peptides have also been isolated from the venoms. The scorpion Isometrus maculatus, belonging to the Buthidae family, is found in many tropical regions including Japan, but little attention has been paid to its biological activity and chemical composition. In this study, we isolated a novel insect toxin, Im-1, by bioassay-guided fractionation of the venom of I. maculatus. Rapid and reversible paralysis was observed after injection of Im-1 into crickets. Im-1 consists of 56 amino acids, and is predicted to form an amphipathic alpha-helix. Since Im-1 shares sequence similarity to an antimicrobial peptide, parabutoporin, we evaluated its effects on several bacterial strains and found that it showed an antimicrobial activity profile similar to parabutoporin. This suggests that Im-1 and parabutoporin exert their antimicrobial effects through similar mechanisms.

  15. Synthesis and solution structure of the antimicrobial peptide protegrin-1.

    PubMed

    Aumelas, A; Mangoni, M; Roumestand, C; Chiche, L; Despaux, E; Grassy, G; Calas, B; Chavanieu, A

    1996-05-01

    Protegrins are members of a family of five Cys-rich, cationic antimicrobial peptides recently isolated from porcine cells. We have synthesised an 18-amino-acid peptide that corresponds to protegrin-1. After Cys oxidation, the peptide has bactericidal activity against gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria, similar to that described for the natural peptide. The solution structure of protegrin-1 was investigated by means of 1H-NMR spectroscopy in water and in (CD3)2SO, with distance-geometry and simulated-annealing calculations. The C6-C15 and C8-C13 disulfide pattern was determined on the basis of NMR-derived constraints. These two parallel disulfide bridges stabilised a beta-sheet structure which comprised two antiparallel strands (residues 5-9 and 12-16) linked by a distorted beta-turn (residues 9-12). The N-terminus and C-terminus were essentially disordered. The distribution of hydrophobic and hydrophilic residues at the peptide surface was found to be a structural feature shared with tachyplesin-1, a related peptide which displays cytolytic activity, and, to a lesser extent, with mammalian defensins. These findings led us to assume that the distribution pattern could be required for the cytolytic activity of these peptides.

  16. Nanomechanical Response of Bacterial Cells to Antimicrobial Peptides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parg, Richard; Dutcher, John

    2015-03-01

    The effectiveness of antimicrobial compounds can be easily screened, however their mechanism of action is much more difficult to determine. Many compounds act by compromising the mechanical integrity of the bacterial cell envelope, and we have developed an atomic force microscopy (AFM)-based creep deformation technique to evaluate changes in the time-dependent mechanical properties of bacterial cells upon exposure to antimicrobial peptides. Measurements performed before and after exposure, as well as time-resolved measurements and those performed at different antimicrobial concentrations, revealed large changes to the viscoelastic parameters including a distinctive signature for the loss of integrity of the bacterial cell envelope. Our previous experiments have focused on Pseudomonas aeruginosaPAO1 bacterial cells in Milli-Q water, for which the cells can withstand the large osmotic pressure. In the present study we have focused on performing the measurements in buffer to obtain more biologically relevant results. The AFM creep deformation measurement provides new, unique insight into the kinetics and mechanism of action of antimicrobial peptides on bacteria.

  17. Diversity, evolution and medical applications of insect antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Mylonakis, Eleftherios; Podsiadlowski, Lars; Muhammed, Maged; Vilcinskas, Andreas

    2016-05-26

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are short proteins with antimicrobial activity. A large portion of known AMPs originate from insects, and the number and diversity of these molecules in different species varies considerably. Insect AMPs represent a potential source of alternative antibiotics to address the limitation of current antibiotics, which has been caused by the emergence and spread of multidrug-resistant pathogens. To get more insight into AMPs, we investigated the diversity and evolution of insect AMPs by mapping their phylogenetic distribution, allowing us to predict the evolutionary origins of selected AMP families and to identify evolutionarily conserved and taxon-specific families. Furthermore, we highlight the use of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans as a whole-animal model in high-throughput screening methods to identify AMPs with efficacy against human pathogens, including Acinetobacter baumanii and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus We also discuss the potential medical applications of AMPs, including their use as alternatives for conventional antibiotics in ectopic therapies, their combined use with antibiotics to restore the susceptibility of multidrug-resistant pathogens, and their use as templates for the rational design of peptidomimetic drugs that overcome the disadvantages of therapeutic peptides.The article is part of the themed issue 'Evolutionary ecology of arthropod antimicrobial peptides'. © 2016 The Authors.

  18. Avian Antimicrobial Host Defense Peptides: From Biology to Therapeutic Applications

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Guolong; Sunkara, Lakshmi T.

    2014-01-01

    Host defense peptides (HDPs) are an important first line of defense with antimicrobial and immunomoduatory properties. Because they act on the microbial membranes or host immune cells, HDPs pose a low risk of triggering microbial resistance and therefore, are being actively investigated as a novel class of antimicrobials and vaccine adjuvants. Cathelicidins and β-defensins are two major families of HDPs in avian species. More than a dozen HDPs exist in birds, with the genes in each HDP family clustered in a single chromosomal segment, apparently as a result of gene duplication and diversification. In contrast to their mammalian counterparts that adopt various spatial conformations, mature avian cathelicidins are mostly α-helical. Avian β-defensins, on the other hand, adopt triple-stranded β-sheet structures similar to their mammalian relatives. Besides classical β-defensins, a group of avian-specific β-defensin-related peptides, namely ovodefensins, exist with a different six-cysteine motif. Like their mammalian counterparts, avian cathelicidins and defensins are derived from either myeloid or epithelial origin expressed in a majority of tissues with broad-spectrum antibacterial and immune regulatory activities. Structure-function relationship studies with several avian HDPs have led to identification of the peptide analogs with potential for use as antimicrobials and vaccine adjuvants. Dietary modulation of endogenous HDP synthesis has also emerged as a promising alternative approach to disease control and prevention in chickens. PMID:24583933

  19. Staphylococcus aureus Infection of Epidermal Keratinocytes Promotes Expression of Innate Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Menzies, Barbara E.; Kenoyer, Aimee

    2005-01-01

    Keratinocytes upregulate expression of endogenous antimicrobial peptides in response to inflammatory stimuli. We show that both viable and heat-inactivated Staphylococcus aureus and lipoteichoic acid differentially alter expression of these peptides upon contact with human keratinocytes. The findings indicate a diversity of staphylococcal factors involved in upregulation of antimicrobial peptide expression in cutaneous epithelia. PMID:16041048

  20. Membrane Core-Specific Antimicrobial Action of Cathelicidin LL-37 Peptide Switches Between Pore and Nanofibre Formation

    PubMed Central

    Shahmiri, Mahdi; Enciso, Marta; Adda, Christopher G.; Smith, Brian J.; Perugini, Matthew A.; Mechler, Adam

    2016-01-01

    Membrane-disrupting antimicrobial peptides provide broad-spectrum defence against localized bacterial invasion in a range of hosts including humans. The most generally held consensus is that targeting to pathogens is based on interactions with the head groups of membrane lipids. Here we show that the action of LL-37, a human antimicrobial peptide switches the mode of action based on the structure of the alkyl chains, and not the head groups of the membrane forming lipids. We demonstrate that LL-37 exhibits two distinct interaction pathways: pore formation in bilayers of unsaturated phospholipids and membrane modulation with saturated phospholipids. Uniquely, the membrane modulation yields helical-rich fibrous peptide-lipid superstructures. Our results point at alternative design strategies for peptide antimicrobials. PMID:27901075

  1. Membrane Core-Specific Antimicrobial Action of Cathelicidin LL-37 Peptide Switches Between Pore and Nanofibre Formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shahmiri, Mahdi; Enciso, Marta; Adda, Christopher G.; Smith, Brian J.; Perugini, Matthew A.; Mechler, Adam

    2016-11-01

    Membrane-disrupting antimicrobial peptides provide broad-spectrum defence against localized bacterial invasion in a range of hosts including humans. The most generally held consensus is that targeting to pathogens is based on interactions with the head groups of membrane lipids. Here we show that the action of LL-37, a human antimicrobial peptide switches the mode of action based on the structure of the alkyl chains, and not the head groups of the membrane forming lipids. We demonstrate that LL-37 exhibits two distinct interaction pathways: pore formation in bilayers of unsaturated phospholipids and membrane modulation with saturated phospholipids. Uniquely, the membrane modulation yields helical-rich fibrous peptide-lipid superstructures. Our results point at alternative design strategies for peptide antimicrobials.

  2. Self-assembly of designed antimicrobial peptides in solution and micelles.

    PubMed

    Javadpour, M M; Barkley, M D

    1997-08-05

    Hydrophobic interactions are responsible for stabilizing leucine zippers in peptides containing heptad repeats. The effects of substituting leucine by phenylalanine and alanine by glycine on the self-assembly of coiled-coils were examined in minimalist antimicrobial peptides designed to form amphipathic alpha-helices. The secondary structure of these peptides was monitored in solution and in diphosphocholine (DPC) micelles using circular dichroism spectroscopy. The leucine peptides (KLAKLAK)3 and (KLAKKLA)n (n = 3, 4) become alpha-helical with increasing concentrations of salt, peptide, and DPC. The aggregation state and equilibrium constant for self-association of the peptides were measured by sedimentation equilibrium. The glycine peptide (KLGKKLG)3 does not self-associate. The leucine peptides and phenylalanine peptides (KFAKFAK)3 and (KFAKKFA)n (n = 3, 4) are in a monomer-tetramer equilibrium in solution, with the phenylalanine zippers being 2-4 kcal/mol less stable than the equivalent leucine zippers. Thermodynamic parameters for the association reaction were calculated from the temperature dependence of the association constants. Leucine zipper formation has DeltaCp = 0, whereas phenylalanine zipper formation has a small negative DeltaCp, presumably due to the removal of the larger surface area of phenylalanine from water. Self-association of the peptides is coupled to formation of a hydrophobic core as detected using 1-anilino-naphthalene-8-sulfonate fluorescence. Carboxyfluorescein-labeled peptides were used to determine the aggregation state of (KLAKKLA)3 and (KLGKKLG)3 in DPC micelles. (KLAKKLA)3 forms dimers, and (KLGKKLG)3 is a monomer. Aggregation appears to correlate with the cytotoxicity of these peptides.

  3. modlAMP: Python for antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Müller, Alex T; Gabernet, Gisela; Hiss, Jan A; Schneider, Gisbert

    2017-09-01

    We have implemented the lecular esign aboratory's nti icrobial eptides package ( ), a Python-based software package for the design, classification and visual representation of peptide data. modlAMP offers functions for molecular descriptor calculation and the retrieval of amino acid sequences from public or local sequence databases, and provides instant access to precompiled datasets for machine learning. The package also contains methods for the analysis and representation of circular dichroism spectra. The modlAMP Python package is available under the BSD license from URL http://doi.org/10.5905/ethz-1007-72 or via pip from the Python Package Index (PyPI). gisbert.schneider@pharma.ethz.ch. Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

  4. Insect Antimicrobial Peptide Complexes Prevent Resistance Development in Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Chernysh, Sergey; Gordya, Natalia; Suborova, Tatyana

    2015-01-01

    In recent decades much attention has been paid to antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) as natural antibiotics, which are presumably protected from resistance development in bacteria. However, experimental evolution studies have revealed prompt resistance increase in bacteria to any individual AMP tested. Here we demonstrate that naturally occurring compounds containing insect AMP complexes have clear advantage over individual peptide and small molecule antibiotics in respect of drug resistance development. As a model we have used the compounds isolated from bacteria challenged maggots of Calliphoridae flies. The compound isolated from blow fly Calliphora vicina was found to contain three distinct families of cell membrane disrupting/permeabilizing peptides (defensins, cecropins and diptericins), one family of proline rich peptides and several unknown antimicrobial substances. Resistance changes under long term selective pressure of the compound and reference antibiotics cefotaxime, meropenem and polymyxin B were tested using Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumonia and Acinetobacter baumannii clinical strains. All the strains readily developed resistance to the reference antibiotics, while no signs of resistance growth to the compound were registered. Similar results were obtained with the compounds isolated from 3 other fly species. The experiments revealed that natural compounds containing insect AMP complexes, in contrast to individual AMP and small molecule antibiotics, are well protected from resistance development in bacteria. Further progress in the research of natural AMP complexes may provide novel solutions to the drug resistance problem. PMID:26177023

  5. Identification and structure-activity relationship of an antimicrobial peptide of the palustrin-2 family isolated from the skin of the endangered frog Odorrana ishikawae.

    PubMed

    Iwakoshi-Ukena, Eiko; Okada, Genya; Okimoto, Aiko; Fujii, Tamotsu; Sumida, Masayuki; Ukena, Kazuyoshi

    2011-10-01

    Recently, we identified nine novel antimicrobial peptides from the skin of the endangered anuran species, Odorrana ishikawae, to assess its innate immune system. In this study an additional antimicrobial peptide was initially isolated based on antimicrobial activity against Escherichia coli. The new antimicrobial peptide belonging to the palustrin-2 family was named palustrin-2ISb. It consists of 36 amino acid residues including 7 amino acids C-terminal to the cyclic heptapeptide Rana box domain. The peptide's primary structure suggests a close relationship with the Chinese odorous frog, Odorrana grahami. The cloned cDNA encoding the precursor protein contained a signal peptide, an N-terminal acidic spacer domain, a Lys-Arg processing site and the C-terminal precursor antimicrobial peptide. It also contained 3 amino acid residues at the C-terminus not found in the mature peptide. Finally, the antimicrobial activities against four microorganisms (E. coli, Staphylococcus aureus, methicillin-resistant S. aureus and Candida albicans) were investigated using several synthetic peptides. A 29 amino acid truncated form of the peptide, lacking the 7 amino acids C-terminal to the Rana box, possessed greater antimicrobial activities than the native structure. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Expression systems for heterologous production of antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Parachin, Nádia Skorupa; Mulder, Kelly Cristina; Viana, Antônio Américo Barbosa; Dias, Simoni Campos; Franco, Octávio Luiz

    2012-12-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) consist of molecules that act on the defense systems of numerous organisms toward multiple pathogens such as bacteria, fungi, parasites and viruses. These compounds have become extremely significant due to the increasing resistance of microorganisms to common antibiotics. However, the low quantity of peptides obtained from direct purification is, to date, still a remarkable bottleneck for scientific and industrial research development. Therefore, this review describes the main heterologous systems currently used for AMP production, including bacteria, fungi and plants, and also the related strategies for reaching greater functional peptide production. The main difficulties of each system are also described in order to provide some directions for AMP production. In summary, data revised here indicate that large-scale production of AMPs can be obtained using biotechnological tools, and the products may be applied in the pharmaceutical industry as well as in agribusiness.

  7. Novel imidazolium salt--peptide conjugates and their antimicrobial activity.

    PubMed

    Reinhardt, A; Horn, M; Schmauck, J Pieper Gen; Bröhl, A; Giernoth, R; Oelkrug, C; Schubert, A; Neundorf, I

    2014-12-17

    Our study presents innovative research dealing with the synthesis and biological evaluation of conjugates out of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) and imidazolium cations that are derived from ionic liquids. AMPs are considered as promising alternatives to common antibiotics due to their different activity mechanisms. Antibacterial effects have also been described for ionic liquids bearing imidazolium cations . Besides single coupling of carboxy-functionalized imidazolium cations to the peptide N-terminal we also developed conjugates bearing multiple copies of imidazolium cations. The combination of both compounds resulted in synergistic effects that were most pronounced when more imidazolium cations were attached to the peptides. In addition, antibacterial activity even in drug-resistant bacterial strains could be observed. Moreover, the novel compounds showed good selectivity only against bacterial cells, an observation that was further proven by lipid interaction studies using giant unilamellar vesicles.

  8. A novel cysteine-rich antimicrobial peptide from the mucus of the snail of Achatina fulica.

    PubMed

    Zhong, Jian; Wang, Wenhong; Yang, Xiaomei; Yan, Xiuwen; Liu, Rui

    2013-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are important components of the innate immunity. Many antimicrobial peptides have been found from marine mollusks. Little information about AMPs of mollusks living on land is available. A novel cysteine-rich antimicrobial peptide (mytimacin-AF) belonging to the peptide family of mytimacins was purified and characterized from the mucus of the snail of Achatina fulica. Its cDNA was also cloned from the cDNA library. Mytimacin-AF is composed of 80 amino acid residues including 10 cysteines. Mytimacin-AF showed potent antimicrobial activity against Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria and the fungus Candida albicans. Among tested microorganisms, it exerted strongest antimicrobial activity against Staphylococcus aureus with a minimal peptide concentration (MIC) of 1.9 μg/ml. Mytimacin-AF had little hemolytic activity against human blood red cells. The current work confirmed the presence of mytimacin-like antimicrobial peptide in land-living mollusks.

  9. The Antimicrobial and Antiviral Applications of Cell-Penetrating Peptides.

    PubMed

    Pärn, Kalle; Eriste, Elo; Langel, Ülo

    2015-01-01

    Over the past two decades, cell-penetrating peptides (CPPs) have become increasingly popular both in research and in application. There have been numerous studies on the physiochemical characteristics and behavior of CPPs in various environments; likewise, the mechanisms of entry and delivery capabilities of these peptides have also been extensively researched. Besides the fundamental issues, there is an enormous interest in the delivery capabilities of the peptides as the family of CPPs is a promising and mostly non-toxic delivery vector candidate for numerous medical applications such as gene silencing, transgene delivery, and splice correction. Lately, however, there has been an emerging field of study besides the high-profile gene therapy applications-the use of peptides and CPPs to combat various infections caused by harmful bacteria, fungi, and viruses.In this chapter, we aim to provide a short overview of the history and properties of CPPs which is followed by more thorough descriptions of antimicrobial and antiviral peptides. To achieve this, we analyze the origin of such peptides, give an overview of the mechanisms of action and discuss the various practical applications which are ongoing or have been suggested based on research.

  10. How proteases from Enterococcus faecalis contribute to its resistance to short α-helical antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Nešuta, Ondrej; Budešínský, Miloš; Hadravová, Romana; Monincová, Lenka; Humpolicková, Jana; Cerovský, Václav

    2017-09-29

    HYL-20 (GILSSLWKKLKKIIAK-NH2) is an analogue of a natural antimicrobial peptide (AMP) previously isolated from the venom of wild bee. We examined its antimicrobial activity against three strains of Enterococcus faecalis while focusing on its susceptibility to proteolytic degradation by two known proteases-gelatinase (GelE) and serine protease (SprE)-which are secreted by these bacterial strains. We found that HYL-20 was primarily deamidated at its C-terminal which made the peptide susceptible to consecutive intramolecular cleavage by GelE. Further study utilising 1,10-phenanthroline, a specific GelE inhibitor and analogous peptide with D-Lys at its C-terminus (HYL-20k) revealed that the C-terminal deamidation of HYL-20 is attributed to not yet unidentified protease which also cleaves internal peptide bonds of AMPs. In contrast to published data, participation of SprE in the protective mechanism of E. faecalis against AMPs was not proved. The resistance of HYL-20k to C-terminal deamidation and subsequent intramolecular cleavage has resulted in increased antimicrobial activity against E. faecalis grown in planktonic and biofilm form when compared to HYL-20. © FEMS 2017. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  11. Characterization of diverse antimicrobial peptides in skin secretions of Chungan torrent frog Amolops chunganensis.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xiaohong; Xia, Jiangnan; Yu, Zhijun; Hu, Yuhong; Li, Fengjiao; Meng, Hao; Yang, Shujie; Liu, Jingze; Wang, Hui

    2012-11-01

    We have cloned, synthesized, and characterized 11 novel antimicrobial peptides from a skin derived cDNA library of the Chungan torrent frog, Amolops chunganensis. Seven of the 11 antimicrobial peptides were present in authentic A. chunganensis skin secretions. Sequence analysis indicated that the 11 peptides belonged to the temporin, esculentin-2, palustrin-2, brevinin-1, and brevinin-2 families. The peptides displayed potent antimicrobial activities against several strains of microorganisms. One peptide, brevinin-1CG5, demonstrated antimicrobial activity against all tested Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria and fungi, and showed high antimicrobial potency (MIC=0.6 μM) against Gram-positive bacterium Rhodococcus rhodochrous. Some peptides also demonstrated weak hemolytic activity against human erythrocytes in vitro. Phylogenetic analysis based on the amino acid sequences of brevinin-1, brevinin-2, and esculentin-2 peptides from family Ranidae confirmed that the current taxonomic status of A. chunganensis is correct. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Gram-positive bacterial cell envelopes: The impact on the activity of antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Malanovic, Nermina; Lohner, Karl

    2016-05-01

    A number of cationic antimicrobial peptides, effectors of innate immunity, are supposed to act at the cytoplasmic membrane leading to permeabilization and eventually membrane disruption. Thereby, interaction of antimicrobial peptides with anionic membrane phospholipids is considered to be a key factor in killing of bacteria. Recently, evidence was provided that killing takes place only when bacterial cell membranes are completely saturated with peptides. This adds to an ongoing debate, which role cell wall components such as peptidoglycan, lipoteichoic acid and lipopolysaccharide may play in the killing event, i.e. if they rather entrap or facilitate antimicrobial peptides access to the cytoplasmic membrane. Therefore, in this review we focused on the impact of Gram-positive cell wall components for the mode of action and activity of antimicrobial peptides as well as in innate immunity. This led us to conclude that interaction of antimicrobial peptides with peptidoglycan may not contribute to a reduction of their antimicrobial activity, whereas interaction with anionic lipoteichoic acids may reduce the local concentration of antimicrobial peptides on the cytoplasmic membrane necessary for sufficient destabilization of the membranes and bacterial killing. Further affinity studies of antimicrobial peptides toward the different cell wall as well as membrane components will be needed to address this problem on a quantitative level. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Antimicrobial peptides edited by Karl Lohner and Kai Hilpert.

  13. A simple and low-cost platform technology for producing pexiganan antimicrobial peptide in E. coli.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Chun-Xia; Dwyer, Mirjana Dimitrijev; Yu, Alice Lei; Wu, Yang; Fang, Sheng; Middelberg, Anton P J

    2015-05-01

    Antimicrobial peptides, as a new class of antibiotics, have generated tremendous interest as potential alternatives to classical antibiotics. However, the large-scale production of antimicrobial peptides remains a significant challenge. This paper reports a simple and low-cost chromatography-free platform technology for producing antimicrobial peptides in Escherichia coli (E. coli). A fusion protein comprising a variant of the helical biosurfactant protein DAMP4 and the known antimicrobial peptide pexiganan is designed by joining the two polypeptides, at the DNA level, via an acid-sensitive cleavage site. The resulting DAMP4(var)-pexiganan fusion protein expresses at high level and solubility in recombinant E. coli, and a simple heat-purification method was applied to disrupt cells and deliver high-purity DAMP4(var)-pexiganan protein. Simple acid cleavage successfully separated the DAMP4 variant protein and the antimicrobial peptide. Antimicrobial activity tests confirmed that the bio-produced antimicrobial peptide has the same antimicrobial activity as the equivalent product made by conventional chemical peptide synthesis. This simple and low-cost platform technology can be easily adapted to produce other valuable peptide products, and opens a new manufacturing approach for producing antimicrobial peptides at large scale using the tools and approaches of biochemical engineering.

  14. Antimicrobial peptide, hdMolluscidin, purified from the gill of the abalone, Haliotis discus.

    PubMed

    Seo, Jung-Kil; Go, Hye-Jin; Kim, Chan-Hee; Nam, Bo-Hye; Park, Nam Gyu

    2016-05-01

    A 4.7 kDa antimicrobial peptide was purified from the acidified gill extract of the Abalone, Haliotis discus, by cation-exchange and C18 reversed-phase high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Comparison of the amino acid sequences and molecular weight of this peptide with those of other known antimicrobial peptides revealed that this antimicrobial peptide have high sequence homology with that of cgMolluscidin and was designated hdMolluscidin. hdMolluscidin is composed of 46 amino acid residues containing several dibasic residue repeats like KK or K-R. hdMolluscidin showed potent antimicrobial activity against both Gram-positive bacteria including Bacillus subtilis and Staphylococcus aureus (minimal effective concentrations [MECs]; 0.8-19.0 μg/mL) and Gram-negative bacteria including Aeromonas hydrophila, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Salmonella enterica, Shigella flexneri, and Vibrio parahemolyticus ([MECs]; 1.0-4.0 μg/mL) without hemolytic activity. However, hdMolluscidin did not show any significant activity against Candida albicans. The secondary structural prediction suggested that hdMolluscidin might not form an ordered or an amphipathic structure. hdMolluscidin did not show membrane permeabilization or leakage ability. The full-length hdMolluscidin cDNA contained 566-bp, including a 5'-untranslated region (UTR) of 63-bp, a 3'-UTR of 359-bp, and an open reading frame of 144-bp encoding 47 amino acids (containing Met). cDNA study of hdMolluscidin suggests that it is expressed as a mature peptide. Our results indicate that hdMolluscidin could relate to the innate immune defenses in abalone and it may not act directly on bacterial membrane. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Diversity, evolution and medical applications of insect antimicrobial peptides

    PubMed Central

    Mylonakis, Eleftherios; Podsiadlowski, Lars; Muhammed, Maged

    2016-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are short proteins with antimicrobial activity. A large portion of known AMPs originate from insects, and the number and diversity of these molecules in different species varies considerably. Insect AMPs represent a potential source of alternative antibiotics to address the limitation of current antibiotics, which has been caused by the emergence and spread of multidrug-resistant pathogens. To get more insight into AMPs, we investigated the diversity and evolution of insect AMPs by mapping their phylogenetic distribution, allowing us to predict the evolutionary origins of selected AMP families and to identify evolutionarily conserved and taxon-specific families. Furthermore, we highlight the use of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans as a whole-animal model in high-throughput screening methods to identify AMPs with efficacy against human pathogens, including Acinetobacter baumanii and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. We also discuss the potential medical applications of AMPs, including their use as alternatives for conventional antibiotics in ectopic therapies, their combined use with antibiotics to restore the susceptibility of multidrug-resistant pathogens, and their use as templates for the rational design of peptidomimetic drugs that overcome the disadvantages of therapeutic peptides. The article is part of the themed issue ‘Evolutionary ecology of arthropod antimicrobial peptides’. PMID:27160593

  16. Roles of Hydrophobicity and Charge Distribution of Cationic Antimicrobial Peptides in Peptide-Membrane Interactions*

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Lois M.; Edwards, Michelle A.; Li, Jessica; Yip, Christopher M.; Deber, Charles M.

    2012-01-01

    Cationic antimicrobial peptides (CAPs) occur as important innate immunity agents in many organisms, including humans, and offer a viable alternative to conventional antibiotics, as they physically disrupt the bacterial membranes, leading to membrane lysis and eventually cell death. In this work, we studied the biophysical and microbiological characteristics of designed CAPs varying in hydrophobicity levels and charge distributions by a variety of biophysical and biochemical approaches, including in-tandem atomic force microscopy, attenuated total reflection-FTIR, CD spectroscopy, and SDS-PAGE. Peptide structural properties were correlated with their membrane-disruptive abilities and antimicrobial activities. In bacterial lipid model membranes, a time-dependent increase in aggregated β-strand-type structure in CAPs with relatively high hydrophobicity (such as KKKKKKALFALWLAFLA-NH2) was essentially absent in CAPs with lower hydrophobicity (such as KKKKKKAAFAAWAAFAA-NH2). Redistribution of positive charges by placing three Lys residues at both termini while maintaining identical sequences minimized self-aggregation above the dimer level. Peptides containing four Leu residues were destructive to mammalian model membranes, whereas those with corresponding Ala residues were not. This finding was mirrored in hemolysis studies in human erythrocytes, where Ala-only peptides displayed virtually no hemolysis up to 320 μm, but the four-Leu peptides induced 40–80% hemolysis at the same concentration range. All peptides studied displayed strong antimicrobial activity against Pseudomonas aeruginosa (minimum inhibitory concentrations of 4–32 μm). The overall findings suggest optimum routes to balancing peptide hydrophobicity and charge distribution that allow efficient penetration and disruption of the bacterial membranes without damage to mammalian (host) membranes. PMID:22253439

  17. Comparative Evaluation of the Antimicrobial Activity of Different Antimicrobial Peptides against a Range of Pathogenic Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Ebbensgaard, Anna; Mordhorst, Hanne; Overgaard, Michael Toft; Nielsen, Claus Gyrup; Aarestrup, Frank Møller; Hansen, Egon Bech

    2015-01-01

    Analysis of a Selected Set of Antimicrobial Peptides The rapid emergence of resistance to classical antibiotics has increased the interest in novel antimicrobial compounds. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) represent an attractive alternative to classical antibiotics and a number of different studies have reported antimicrobial activity data of various AMPs, but there is only limited comparative data available. The mode of action for many AMPs is largely unknown even though several models have suggested that the lipopolysaccharides (LPS) play a crucial role in the attraction and attachment of the AMP to the bacterial membrane in Gram-negative bacteria. We compared the potency of Cap18, Cap11, Cap11-1-18m2, Cecropin P1, Cecropin B, Bac2A, Bac2A-NH2, Sub5-NH2, Indolicidin, Melittin, Myxinidin, Myxinidin-NH2, Pyrrhocoricin, Apidaecin and Metalnikowin I towards Staphylococcus aureus, Enterococcus faecalis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Escherichia coli, Aeromonas salmonicida, Listeria monocytogenes, Campylobacter jejuni, Flavobacterium psychrophilum, Salmonella typhimurium and Yersinia ruckeri by minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) determinations. Additional characteristics such as cytotoxicity, thermo and protease stability were measured and compared among the different peptides. Further, the antimicrobial activity of a selection of cationic AMPs was investigated in various E. coli LPS mutants. Cap18 Shows a High Broad Spectrum Antimicrobial Activity Of all the tested AMPs, Cap18 showed the most efficient antimicrobial activity, in particular against Gram-negative bacteria. In addition, Cap18 is highly thermostable and showed no cytotoxic effect in a hemolytic assay, measured at the concentration used. However, Cap18 is, as most of the tested AMPs, sensitive to proteolytic digestion in vitro. Thus, Cap18 is an excellent candidate for further development into practical use; however, modifications that should reduce the protease sensitivity would be needed. In addition, our

  18. Identification and characterization of antimicrobial peptides from the skin of the endangered frog Odorrana ishikawae.

    PubMed

    Iwakoshi-Ukena, Eiko; Ukena, Kazuyoshi; Okimoto, Aiko; Soga, Miyuki; Okada, Genya; Sano, Naomi; Fujii, Tamotsu; Sugawara, Yoshiaki; Sumida, Masayuki

    2011-04-01

    The endangered anuran species, Odorrana ishikawae, is endemic to only two small Japanese Islands, Amami and Okinawa. To assess the innate immune system in this frog, we investigated antimicrobial peptides in the skin using artificially bred animals. Nine novel antimicrobial peptides containing the C-terminal cyclic heptapeptide domain were isolated on the basis of antimicrobial activity against Escherichia coli. The peptides were members of the esculentin-1 (two peptides), esculentin-2 (one peptide), palustrin-2 (one peptide), brevinin-2 (three peptides) and nigrocin-2 (two peptides) antimicrobial peptide families. They were named esculentin-1ISa, esculentin-1ISb, esculentin-2ISa, palustrin-2ISa, brevinin-2ISa, brevinin-2ISb, brevinin-2ISc, nigrocin-2ISa and nigrocin-2ISb. Peptide primary structures suggest a close relationship with the Asian odorous frogs, Odorrana grahami and Odorrana hosii. These antimicrobial peptides possessed a broad-spectrum of growth inhibition against five microorganisms (E. coli, Staphylococcus aureus, methicillin-resistant S. aureus, Bacillus subtilis and Candida albicans). Nine different cDNAs encoding the precursor proteins were also cloned and showed that the precursor proteins exhibited a signal peptide, an N-terminal acidic spacer domain, a Lys-Arg processing site and an antimicrobial peptide at the C-terminus. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Interactions Between Peptide and Preservatives: Effects on Peptide Self-Interactions and Antimicrobial Efficiency In Aqueous Multi-Dose Formulations.

    PubMed

    Heljo, P; Ross, A; Zarraga, I E; Pappenberger, A; Mahler, H-C

    2015-10-01

    Antimicrobial preservatives are known to interact with proteins and potentially affect their stability in aqueous solutions. In this systematic study, the interactions of a model peptide with three commonly used preservatives, benzyl alcohol, phenol and m-cresol, were evaluated. The impact on peptide oligomerization was studied using GC-MALS, SEC-MALS and DLS, antimicrobial efficiency of different formulations were studied using the Ph. Eur. antimicrobial efficacy test, and the molecular adsorption of preservative molecules on reversible peptide oligomers was monitored using NMR. The hydrodynamic radius and molar mass of the peptide oligomers was shown to clearly increase in the presence of m-cresol but less significantly with phenol and benzyl alcohol. The increase in size was most likely caused by peptide self-interactions becoming more attractive, leading to reversible oligomerization. On the other hand, increasing the concentration of peptide in multi-dose formulations led to reduced molecular mobility and decreased antimicrobial efficacy of all preservatives. Peptide-preservative interactions not only affect peptide self-interactions, but also antimicrobial efficiency of the preservatives and are thus of significant relevance. Adsorption of preservatives on oligomeric states of peptides is proposed as a mechanism to explain this reduced antimicrobial efficacy.

  20. Antimicrobial Peptides as Mediators of Innate Immunity in Teleosts

    PubMed Central

    Katzenback, Barbara A.

    2015-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have been identified throughout the metazoa suggesting their evolutionarily conserved nature and their presence in teleosts is no exception. AMPs are short (18–46 amino acids), usually cationic, amphipathic peptides. While AMPs are diverse in amino acid sequence, with no two AMPs being identical, they collectively appear to have conserved functions in the innate immunity of animals towards the pathogens they encounter in their environment. Fish AMPs are upregulated in response to pathogens and appear to have direct broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity towards both human and fish pathogens. However, an emerging role for AMPs as immunomodulatory molecules has become apparent—the ability of AMPs to activate the innate immune system sheds light onto the multifaceted capacity of these small peptides to combat pathogens through direct and indirect means. Herein, this review focuses on the role of teleost AMPs as modulators of the innate immune system and their regulation in response to pathogens or other exogenous molecules. The capacity to regulate AMP expression by exogenous factors may prove useful in modulating AMP expression in fish to prevent disease, particularly in aquaculture settings where crowded conditions and environmental stress pre-dispose these fish to infection. PMID:26426065

  1. S. Typhimurium strategies to resist killing by cationic antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Matamouros, Susana; Miller, Samuel I

    2015-11-01

    S. Typhimurium is a broad host range Gram-negative pathogen that must evade killing by host innate immune systems to colonize, replicate, cause disease, and be transmitted to other hosts. A major pathogenic strategy of Salmonellae is entrance, survival, and replication within eukaryotic cell phagocytic vacuoles. These phagocytic vacuoles and gastrointestinal mucosal surfaces contain multiple cationic antimicrobial peptides (CAMPs) which control invading bacteria. S. Typhimurium possesses several key mechanisms to resist killing by CAMPs which involve sensing CAMPs and membrane damage to activate signaling cascades that result in remodeling of the bacterial envelope to reduce its overall negative charge with an increase in hydrophobicity to decrease binding and effectiveness of CAMPs. Moreover Salmonellae have additional mechanisms to resist killing by CAMPs including an outer membrane protease which targets cationic peptides at the surface, and specific efflux pumps which protect the inner membrane from damage. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Bacterial Resistance to Antimicrobial Peptides. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Mammalian antimicrobial peptide influences control of cutaneous Leishmania infection

    PubMed Central

    Kulkarni, Manjusha M.; Barbi, Joseph; McMaster, W. Robert; Gallo, Richard L.; Satoskar, Abhay R.; McGwire, Bradford S.

    2011-01-01

    Summary Cathelicidin-type antimicrobial peptides (CAMP) are important mediators of innate immunity against microbial pathogens acting through direct interaction with and disruption of microbial membranes and indirectly through modulation of host cell migration and activation. Using a mouse knock-out model in CAMP we studied the role of this host peptide in control of dissemination of cutaneous infection by the parasitic protozoan Leishmania. The presence of pronounced host inflammatory infiltration in lesions and lymph nodes of infected animals was CAMP-dependent. Lack of CAMP expression was associated with higher levels of IL-10 receptor expression in bone marrow, splenic and lymph node macrophages as well as higher anti-inflammatory IL-10 production by bone marrow macrophages and spleen cells but reduced production of the pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-12 and IFN-γ by lymph nodes. Unlike wild-type mice, local lesions were exacerbated and parasites were found largely disseminated in CAMP knockouts. Infection of CAMP knockouts with parasite mutants lacking the surface metalloprotease virulence determinant resulted in more robust disseminated infection than in control animals suggesting that CAMP activity is negatively regulated by parasite surface proteolytic activity. This correlated with the ability of the pro-tease to degrade CAMP in vitro and co-localization of CAMP with parasites within macrophages. Our results highlight the interplay of antimicrobial peptides and Leishmania that influence the host immune response and the outcome of infection. PMID:21501359

  3. Unveiling antimicrobial peptide-generating human proteases using PROTEASIX.

    PubMed

    Bastos, Paulo; Trindade, Fábio; Ferreira, Rita; Casteleiro, Mercedes Arguello; Stevens, Robert; Klein, Julie; Vitorino, Rui

    2017-02-27

    Extracting information from peptidomics data is a major current challenge, as endogenous peptides can result from the activity of multiple enzymes. Proteolytic enzymes can display overlapping or complementary specificity. The activity spectrum of human endogenous peptide-generating proteases is not fully known. Hence, the indirect study of proteolytic enzymes through the analysis of its substrates is largely hampered. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) represent a primordial set of immune defense molecules generated by proteolytic cleavage of precursor proteins. These peptides can be modulated by host and microorganismal stimuli, which both dictate proteolytic enzymes' expression and activity. Peptidomics is an attractive approach to identify peptides with a biological role and to assess proteolytic activity. However, bioinformatics tools to deal with peptidomics data are lacking. PROTEASIX is an excellent choice for the prediction of AMPs-generating proteases based on the reconstitution of a substrate's cleavage sites and the crossing of such information with known proteases' specificity retrieved by several publicly available databases. Therefore, the focus of the present tutorial is to explore the potential of PROTEASIX when gather information concerning proteases involved in the generation of human AMPs and to teach the user how to make the most out of peptidomics results using PROTEASIX.

  4. Importance of Tryptophan in Transforming an Amphipathic Peptide into a Pseudomonas aeruginosa-Targeted Antimicrobial Peptide.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Xin; Ma, Zhi; Wang, Jiajun; Chou, Shuli; Shan, Anshan

    2014-01-01

    Here, we found that simple substitution of amino acids in the middle position of the hydrophobic face of an amphipathic peptide RI16 with tryptophan (T9W) considerably transformed into an antimicrobial peptide specifically targeting Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) results demonstrated that T9W had a strong and specifically antimicrobial activity against P. aeruginosa, including antibiotic-resistant strains, but was not active against Escherichia coli, Salmonella typhimurium, Staphylococcus aureus and Staphyfococcus epidermidis. Fluorescent spectroscopic assays indicated that T9W interacted with the membrane of P. aeruginosa, depolarizing the outer and the inner membrane of bacterial cells. Salt susceptibility assay showed that T9W still maintained its strong anti-pseudomonas activity in the presence of salts at physiological concentrations, and in hemolytic and MTT assays T9W also showed no toxicity against human blood cells and macrophages. In vivo assay demonstrated that T9W also displayed no toxicity to Chinese Kun Ming (KM) mice. Furthermore, the strong antibiofilm activity was also observed with the peptide T9W, which decreased the percentage of biomass formation in a dose-dependent manner. Overall, these findings indicated that design of single-pathogen antimicrobial agents can be achieved by simple amino acid mutation in naturally occurring peptide sequences and this study suggested a model of optimization/design of anti-pseudomonas drugs in which the tryptophan residue was a conserved element.

  5. Importance of Tryptophan in Transforming an Amphipathic Peptide into a Pseudomonas aeruginosa-Targeted Antimicrobial Peptide

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Xin; Ma, Zhi; Wang, Jiajun; Chou, Shuli; Shan, Anshan

    2014-01-01

    Here, we found that simple substitution of amino acids in the middle position of the hydrophobic face of an amphipathic peptide RI16 with tryptophan (T9W) considerably transformed into an antimicrobial peptide specifically targeting Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) results demonstrated that T9W had a strong and specifically antimicrobial activity against P. aeruginosa, including antibiotic-resistant strains, but was not active against Escherichia coli, Salmonella typhimurium, Staphylococcus aureus and Staphyfococcus epidermidis. Fluorescent spectroscopic assays indicated that T9W interacted with the membrane of P. aeruginosa, depolarizing the outer and the inner membrane of bacterial cells. Salt susceptibility assay showed that T9W still maintained its strong anti-pseudomonas activity in the presence of salts at physiological concentrations, and in hemolytic and MTT assays T9W also showed no toxicity against human blood cells and macrophages. In vivo assay demonstrated that T9W also displayed no toxicity to Chinese Kun Ming (KM) mice. Furthermore, the strong antibiofilm activity was also observed with the peptide T9W, which decreased the percentage of biomass formation in a dose-dependent manner. Overall, these findings indicated that design of single-pathogen antimicrobial agents can be achieved by simple amino acid mutation in naturally occurring peptide sequences and this study suggested a model of optimization/design of anti-pseudomonas drugs in which the tryptophan residue was a conserved element. PMID:25494332

  6. Characterization of Antimicrobial Peptides toward the Development of Novel Antibiotics

    PubMed Central

    Aoki, Wataru; Ueda, Mitsuyoshi

    2013-01-01

    Antimicrobial agents have eradicated many infectious diseases and significantly improved our living environment. However, abuse of antimicrobial agents has accelerated the emergence of multidrug-resistant microorganisms, and there is an urgent need for novel antibiotics. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have attracted attention as a novel class of antimicrobial agents because AMPs efficiently kill a wide range of species, including bacteria, fungi, and viruses, via a novel mechanism of action. In addition, they are effective against pathogens that are resistant to almost all conventional antibiotics. AMPs have promising properties; they directly disrupt the functions of cellular membranes and nucleic acids, and the rate of appearance of AMP-resistant strains is very low. However, as pharmaceuticals, AMPs exhibit unfavorable properties, such as instability, hemolytic activity, high cost of production, salt sensitivity, and a broad spectrum of activity. Therefore, it is vital to improve these properties to develop novel AMP treatments. Here, we have reviewed the basic biochemical properties of AMPs and the recent strategies used to modulate these properties of AMPs to enhance their safety. PMID:24276381

  7. Characterization of Antimicrobial Peptides toward the Development of Novel Antibiotics.

    PubMed

    Aoki, Wataru; Ueda, Mitsuyoshi

    2013-08-21

    Antimicrobial agents have eradicated many infectious diseases and significantly improved our living environment. However, abuse of antimicrobial agents has accelerated the emergence of multidrug-resistant microorganisms, and there is an urgent need for novel antibiotics. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have attracted attention as a novel class of antimicrobial agents because AMPs efficiently kill a wide range of species, including bacteria, fungi, and viruses, via a novel mechanism of action. In addition, they are effective against pathogens that are resistant to almost all conventional antibiotics. AMPs have promising properties; they directly disrupt the functions of cellular membranes and nucleic acids, and the rate of appearance of AMP-resistant strains is very low. However, as pharmaceuticals, AMPs exhibit unfavorable properties, such as instability, hemolytic activity, high cost of production, salt sensitivity, and a broad spectrum of activity. Therefore, it is vital to improve these properties to develop novel AMP treatments. Here, we have reviewed the basic biochemical properties of AMPs and the recent strategies used to modulate these properties of AMPs to enhance their safety.

  8. Cationic antimicrobial peptide killing of African trypanosomes and Sodalis glossinidius, a bacterial symbiont of the insect vector of sleeping sickness.

    PubMed

    Haines, Lee R; Hancock, Robert E W; Pearson, Terry W

    2003-01-01

    Nine biochemically distinct cationic antimicrobial peptides were tested in vitro for their effects on bloodstream forms and procyclic (insect) forms of African trypanosomes, the protozoan parasites that cause African sleeping sickness in humans and trypanosomiasis in domestic animals. At low concentrations, one peptide completely inhibited growth of bloodstream forms, one inhibited procyclic forms, and five inhibited both trypanosome life cycle stages. The peptides were also tested on Sodalis glossinidius, a bacterial symbiont of tsetse flies. S. glossinidius was highly resistant to seven of the nine peptides, including both that specifically inhibited either bloodstream or procyclic forms and three of the five that inhibited both trypanosome life cycle stages. The results indicate that several of these peptides may be ideal candidates for therapy of trypanosome infected mammals or for transgenic expression in S. glossinidius as a strategy for inhibiting trypanosome survival, development, and maturation in tsetse and interference with transmission of African sleeping sickness.

  9. Antimicrobial Peptides as Anti-biofilm Agents in Medical Implants.

    PubMed

    Sánchez-Gómez, Susana; Martínez-de-Tejada, Guillermo

    2017-01-01

    Biofilm-associated infections constitute a daunting threat to human health, since these pathologies increase patient mortality and morbidity, resulting in prolonged hospitalization periods and heavy economic losses. Moreover, these infections contribute to the increasing emergence and dissemination of antibiotic resistance in hospitals and in the community. Although biofilm-associated microorganisms can proliferate in healthy tissue, abiotic surfaces like those of medical implants greatly increase the likelihood of biofilm formation in the host. Due to their broad spectrum of bactericidal activity against multi-drug resistant microorganisms including metabolically inactive cells, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have great potential as anti-biofilm agents. In fact, a clinically available AMP, polymyxin E (colistin), frequently constitutes the drug of last recourse in biofilm-associated infections (e.g. cystic fibrosis) when resistance to all the other drugs arises. In this article, we outline the main strategies under development to combat biofilm-associated infections with an emphasis in the prevention of microbial colonization of medical implants. These approaches include the use of AMPs both for the development of anti-adhesive surface coatings and to kill biofilm-forming cells either on contact or via controlled release (leaching surfaces). Although in vitro results for all these applications are very encouraging, further research is needed to improve the anti-biofilm activity of these coatings in vivo. The possibility of exploiting the antibiotic potentiating activity of some AMPs and to combine several anti-biofilm mechanisms in tandem targeting the biofilm formation process at different stages is also discussed.

  10. Circular Dichroism studies on the interactions of antimicrobial peptides with bacterial cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Avitabile, Concetta; D'Andrea, Luca Domenico; Romanelli, Alessandra

    2014-03-01

    Studying how antimicrobial peptides interact with bacterial cells is pivotal to understand their mechanism of action. In this paper we explored the use of Circular Dichroism to detect the secondary structure of two antimicrobial peptides, magainin 2 and cecropin A, with E. coli bacterial cells. The results of our studies allow us to gain two important information in the context of antimicrobial peptides- bacterial cells interactions: peptides fold mainly due to interaction with LPS, which is the main component of the Gram negative bacteria outer membrane and the time required for the folding on the bacterial cells depends on the peptide analyzed.

  11. Spermicidal Activity of the Safe Natural Antimicrobial Peptide Subtilosin

    PubMed Central

    Sutyak, Katia E.; Anderson, Robert A.; Dover, Sara E.; Feathergill, Kenneth A.; Aroutcheva, Alla A.; Faro, Sebastian; Chikindas, Michael L.

    2008-01-01

    Bacterial vaginosis (BV), a condition affecting millions of women each year, is primarily caused by the gram-variable organism Gardnerella vaginalis. A number of organisms associated with BV cases have been reported to develop multidrug resistance, leading to the need for alternative therapies. Previously, we reported the antimicrobial peptide subtilosin has proven antimicrobial activity against G. vaginalis, but not against the tested healthy vaginal microbiota of lactobacilli. After conducting tissue sensitivity assays using an ectocervical tissue model, we determined that human cells remained viable after prolonged exposures to partially-purified subtilosin, indicating the compound is safe for human use. Subtilosin was shown to eliminate the motility and forward progression of human spermatozoa in a dose-dependent manner, and can therefore be considered a general spermicidal agent. These results suggest subtilosin would be a valuable component in topical personal care products aimed at contraception and BV prophylaxis and treatment. PMID:18923673

  12. Lipid-packing perturbation of model membranes by pH-responsive antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Alvares, Dayane S; Viegas, Taisa Giordano; Ruggiero Neto, João

    2017-08-29

    The indiscriminate use of conventional antibiotics is leading to an increase in the number of resistant bacterial strains, motivating the search for new compounds to overcome this challenging problem. Antimicrobial peptides, acting only in the lipid phase of membranes without requiring specific membrane receptors as do conventional antibiotics, have shown great potential as possible substituents of these drugs. These peptides are in general rich in basic and hydrophobic residues forming an amphipathic structure when in contact with membranes. The outer leaflet of the prokaryotic cell membrane is rich in anionic lipids, while the surface of the eukaryotic cell is zwitterionic. Due to their positive net charge, many of these peptides are selective to the prokaryotic membrane. Notwithstanding this preference for anionic membranes, some of them can also act on neutral ones, hampering their therapeutic use. In addition to the electrostatic interaction driving peptide adsorption by the membrane, the ability of the peptide to perturb lipid packing is of paramount importance in their capacity to induce cell lysis, which is strongly dependent on electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions. In the present research, we revised the adsorption of antimicrobial peptides by model membranes as well as the perturbation that they induce in lipid packing. In particular, we focused on some peptides that have simultaneously acidic and basic residues. The net charges of these peptides are modulated by pH changes and the lipid composition of model membranes. We discuss the experimental approaches used to explore these aspects of lipid membranes using lipid vesicles and lipid monolayer as model membranes.

  13. Dynamical and phase behavior of a phospholipid membrane altered by an antimicrobial peptide at low concentration

    SciTech Connect

    Mamontov, Eugene; Tyagi, M.; Qian, Shuo; Rai, Durgesh K.; Urban, Volker S.; Sharma, V. K.

    2016-05-27

    Here we discuss that the mechanism of action of antimicrobial peptides is traditionally attributed to the formation of pores in the lipid cell membranes of pathogens, which requires a substantial peptide to lipid ratio. However, using incoherent neutron scattering, we show that even at a concentration too low for pore formation, an archetypal antimicrobial peptide, melittin, disrupts the regular phase behavior of the microscopic dynamics in a phospholipid membrane, dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine (DMPC). At the same time, another antimicrobial peptide, alamethicin, does not exert a similar effect on the DMPC microscopic dynamics. The melittin-altered lateral motion of DMPC at physiological temperature no longer resembles the fluid-phase behavior characteristic of functional membranes of the living cells. The disruptive effect demonstrated by melittin even at low concentrations reveals a new mechanism of antimicrobial action relevant in more realistic scenarios, when peptide concentration is not as high as would be required for pore formation, which may facilitate treatment with antimicrobial peptides.

  14. Antimicrobial activity of antihypertensive food-derived peptides and selected alanine analogues.

    PubMed

    McClean, Stephen; Beggs, Louise B; Welch, Robert W

    2014-03-01

    This study evaluated four food-derived peptides with known antihypertensive activities for antimicrobial activity against pathogenic microorganisms, and assessed structure-function relationships using alanine analogues. The peptides (EVSLNSGYY, barley; PGTAVFK, soybean; TTMPLW, α-casein; VHLPP, α-zein) and the six alanine substitution peptides of PGTAVFK were synthesised, characterised and evaluated for antimicrobial activity using the bacteria, Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, and Micrococcus luteus and the yeast, Candida albicans. The peptides TTMPLW and PGTAVFK inhibited growth of all four microorganisms tested, with activities of a similar order of magnitude to ampicillin and ethanol controls. EVSLNSGYY inhibited the growth of the bacteria, but VHLPP showed no antimicrobial activity. The alanine analogue, PGAAVFK showed the highest overall antimicrobial activity and PGTAVFA showed no activity; overall, the activities of the analogues were consistent with their structures. Some peptides with antihypertensive activity also show antimicrobial activity, suggesting that food-derived peptides may exert beneficial effects via a number of mechanisms.

  15. Dynamical and phase behavior of a phospholipid membrane altered by an antimicrobial peptide at low concentration

    SciTech Connect

    Mamontov, Eugene; Tyagi, M.; Qian, Shuo; Rai, Durgesh K.; Urban, Volker S.; Sharma, V. K.

    2016-05-27

    Here we discuss that the mechanism of action of antimicrobial peptides is traditionally attributed to the formation of pores in the lipid cell membranes of pathogens, which requires a substantial peptide to lipid ratio. However, using incoherent neutron scattering, we show that even at a concentration too low for pore formation, an archetypal antimicrobial peptide, melittin, disrupts the regular phase behavior of the microscopic dynamics in a phospholipid membrane, dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine (DMPC). At the same time, another antimicrobial peptide, alamethicin, does not exert a similar effect on the DMPC microscopic dynamics. The melittin-altered lateral motion of DMPC at physiological temperature no longer resembles the fluid-phase behavior characteristic of functional membranes of the living cells. The disruptive effect demonstrated by melittin even at low concentrations reveals a new mechanism of antimicrobial action relevant in more realistic scenarios, when peptide concentration is not as high as would be required for pore formation, which may facilitate treatment with antimicrobial peptides.

  16. Antimicrobial Peptides and Wound Healing: Biological and Therapeutic Considerations

    PubMed Central

    Mangoni, Maria Luisa; McDermott, Alison M.; Zasloff, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Repair of tissue wounds is a fundamental process to re-establish tissue integrity and regular function. Importantly, infection is a major factor that hinders wound healing. Multicellular organisms have evolved an arsenal of host-defence molecules, including antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), aimed at controlling microbial proliferation and at modulating the host's immune response to a variety of biological or physical insults. In this brief review we provide the evidence for a role of AMPs as endogenous mediators of wound healing and their promising therapeutic potential for treatment of non-life threatening skin and other epithelial injuries. PMID:26738772

  17. Antimicrobial Peptides: New Recognition Molecules for Detecting Botulinum Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Kulagina, Nadezhda V.; Anderson, George P.; Ligler, Frances S.; Shaffer, Kara M.; Taitt, Chris Rowe

    2007-01-01

    Many organisms secrete antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) for protection against harmful microbes. The present study describes detection of botulinum neurotoxoids A, B and E using AMPs as recognition elements in an array biosensor. While AMP affinities were similar to those for anti-botulinum antibodies, differences in binding patterns were observed and can potentially be used for identification of toxoid serotype. Furthermore, some AMPs also demonstrated superior detection sensitivity compared to antibodies: toxoid A could be detected at 3.5 LD50 of the active toxin in a 75-min assay, whereas toxoids B and E were detected at 14 and 80 LD50 for their respective toxins.

  18. Assays for Identifying Inducers of the Antimicrobial Peptide LL-37.

    PubMed

    Nylén, Frank; Bergman, Peter; Gudmundsson, Gudmundur H; Agerberth, Birgitta

    2017-01-01

    One promising approach to meet the growing problem of antibiotic resistance is to modulate host defense mechanisms, i.e., host-directed therapy (HDT), in the fight against infections. Induction of endogenous antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) via small molecular compounds, such as 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 or phenylbutyrate, could provide one such HDT-based approach.We have developed a cell-based screening assay for the identification of novel compounds with the capacity to induce AMP expression and here follows the detailed protocol.

  19. Machine learning in the rational design of antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Rondón-Villarreal, Paola; Sierra, Daniel A; Torres, Rodrigo

    2014-01-01

    One of the most important public health issues is the microbial and bacterial resistance to conventional antibiotics by pathogen microorganisms. In recent years, many researches have been focused on the development of new antibiotics. Among these, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have raised as a promising alternative to combat antibioticresistant microorganisms. For this reason, many theoretical efforts have been done in the development of new computational tools for the rational design of both better and effective AMPs. In this review, we present an overview of the rational design of AMPs using machine learning techniques and new research fields.

  20. Antimicrobial peptides and wound healing: biological and therapeutic considerations.

    PubMed

    Mangoni, Maria Luisa; McDermott, Alison M; Zasloff, Michael

    2016-03-01

    Repair of tissue wounds is a fundamental process to re-establish tissue integrity and regular function. Importantly, infection is a major factor that hinders wound healing. Multicellular organisms have evolved an arsenal of host-defense molecules, including antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), aimed at controlling microbial proliferation and at modulating the host's immune response to a variety of biological or physical insults. In this brief review, we provide the evidence for a role of AMPs as endogenous mediators of wound healing and their promising therapeutic potential for the treatment of non-life-threatening skin and other epithelial injuries. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. Sequence diversity and evolution of antimicrobial peptides in invertebrates.

    PubMed

    Tassanakajon, Anchalee; Somboonwiwat, Kunlaya; Amparyup, Piti

    2015-02-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are evolutionarily ancient molecules that act as the key components in the invertebrate innate immunity against invading pathogens. Several AMPs have been identified and characterized in invertebrates, and found to display considerable diversity in their amino acid sequence, structure and biological activity. AMP genes appear to have rapidly evolved, which might have arisen from the co-evolutionary arms race between host and pathogens, and enabled organisms to survive in different microbial environments. Here, the sequence diversity of invertebrate AMPs (defensins, cecropins, crustins and anti-lipopolysaccharide factors) are presented to provide a better understanding of the evolution pattern of these peptides that play a major role in host defense mechanisms. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Susceptibilities of Bordetella pertussis strains to antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed Central

    Fernandez, R C; Weiss, A A

    1996-01-01

    We examined the susceptibilities of Bordetella pertussis strains to several antimicrobial peptides by determining the concentration required to inhibit or kill 50% of the bacterial population. The peptides are ranked in decreasing potency as follows: cecropin B > cecropin A >> melittin > cecropin P1 > (ala8,13,18)-magainin II amide > mastoparan = defensin HNP1 > protamine > or = magainin II = magainin I. By using a radial diffusion assay to compare susceptibilities between strains, wild-type B. pertussis BP338 was more resistant than the avirulent bvg mutant strain BP347 and the brk mutant strain BPM2041 to killing by cecropin P1. In contrast, compared with the wild type, the avirulent BP347 strain was highly resistant to killing by protamine and defensin HNP1. PMID:8849226

  3. Differential distribution and defence involvement of antimicrobial peptides in mussel.

    PubMed

    Mitta, G; Vandenbulcke, F; Noël, T; Romestand, B; Beauvillain, J C; Salzet, M; Roch, P

    2000-08-01

    In previous papers, we characterised 3 types of 4-kDa, cysteine-rich, cationic antimicrobial peptides: MGDs (for Mytilus galloprovincialis defensins), mytilins and myticins, which are abundant in the mussel hemocytes. In the present work, we revealed a differential distribution of the cells expressing the different genes. In addition, using confocal and electron microscopy, we confirmed that defensins and mytilins were partially located in different sub-types of circulating hemocytes although the peptides can be located in the same cell, and even in the same granule. We also demonstrated that mytilins exert their microbicidal effect within the cells through the process of phagosome-mytilin granule fusion leading to the co-location of ingested bacteria and mytilins.

  4. Activity of an antimicrobial peptide mimetic against planktonic and biofilm cultures of oral pathogens.

    PubMed

    Beckloff, Nicholas; Laube, Danielle; Castro, Tammy; Furgang, David; Park, Steven; Perlin, David; Clements, Dylan; Tang, Haizhong; Scott, Richard W; Tew, Gregory N; Diamond, Gill

    2007-11-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are naturally occurring, broad-spectrum antimicrobial agents that have recently been examined for their utility as therapeutic antibiotics. Unfortunately, they are expensive to produce and are often sensitive to protease digestion. To address this problem, we have examined the activity of a peptide mimetic whose design was based on the structure of magainin, exhibiting its amphiphilic structure. We demonstrate that this compound, meta-phenylene ethynylene (mPE), exhibits antimicrobial activity at nanomolar concentrations against a variety of bacterial and Candida species found in oral infections. Since Streptococcus mutans, an etiological agent of dental caries, colonizes the tooth surface and forms a biofilm, we quantified the activity of this compound against S. mutans growing under conditions that favor biofilm formation. Our results indicate that mPE can prevent the formation of a biofilm at nanomolar concentrations. Incubation with 5 nM mPE prevents further growth of the biofilm, and 100 nM mPE reduces viable bacteria in the biofilm by 3 logs. Structure-function analyses suggest that mPE inhibits the bioactivity of lipopolysaccharide and binds DNA at equimolar ratios, suggesting that it may act both as a membrane-active molecule, similar to magainin, and as an intracellular antibiotic, similar to other AMPs. We conclude that mPE and similar molecules display great potential for development as therapeutic antimicrobials.

  5. Design of imperfectly amphipathic α-helical antimicrobial peptides with enhanced cell selectivity.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Xin; Dong, Na; Wang, Zeyun; Ma, Zhi; Zhang, Licong; Ma, Qingquan; Shan, Anshan

    2014-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), which are produced by multicellular organisms as a defense mechanism against competing pathogenic microbes, appear to be excellent candidates for the development of novel antimicrobial agents. Amphipathicity is traditionally believed to be crucial to the de novo design or systematic optimization of AMPs. In this study, we designed a series of short α-helical AMPs with imperfect amphipathicity to augment the arsenal of strategies and to gain further insights into their antimicrobial and hemolytic activity. These imperfectly amphipathic α-helical AMPs were designed by replacing the paired charged amino acid residues on the polar face of an amphipathic peptide with tryptophan residues on the basis of α-helical protein folding principles. PRW4, an imperfectly amphipathic α-helical AMP with hydrogen bonds formed by paired tryptophan residues, was observed to be more selective towards bacterial cells than toward human red blood cells. PRW4 was also effective against Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria, and fluorescence spectroscopy, flow cytometry, scanning electron microscopy and transmission electron microscopy indicated that PRW4 killed microbial cells by permeabilizing the cell membrane and damaging their membrane integrity. Therefore, disruptive amphipathicity has excellent potential for the rational design and optimization of AMPs with promising antimicrobial activities. Copyright © 2013 Acta Materialia Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Antimicrobial peptides of the genus Bacillus: a new era for antibiotics.

    PubMed

    Sumi, Chandra Datta; Yang, Byung Wook; Yeo, In-Cheol; Hahm, Young Tae

    2015-02-01

    The rapid onset of resistance reduces the efficacy of most conventional antimicrobial drugs and is a general cause of concern for human well-being. Thus, there is great demand for a continuous supply of novel antibiotics to combat this problem. Bacteria-derived antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have long been used as food preservatives; moreover, prior to the development of conventional antibiotics, these AMPs served as an efficient source of antibiotics. Recently, peptides produced by members of the genus Bacillus were shown to have a broad spectrum of antimicrobial activity against pathogenic microbes. Bacillus-derived AMPs can be synthesized both ribosomally and nonribosomally and can be classified according to peptide biosynthesis, structure, and molecular weight. The precise mechanism of action of these AMPs is not yet clear; however, one proposed mechanism is that these AMPs kill bacteria by forming channels in and (or) disrupting the bacterial cell wall. Bacillus-derived AMPs have potential in the pharmaceutical industry, as well as the food and agricultural sectors. Here, we focus on Bacillus-derived AMPs as a novel alternative approach to antibacterial drug development. We also provide an overview of the biosynthesis, mechanisms of action, applications, and effectiveness of different AMPs produced by members of the Bacillus genus, including several recently identified novel AMPs.

  7. Characterization of a fish antimicrobial peptide: gene expression, subcellular localization, and spectrum of activity.

    PubMed

    Cole, A M; Darouiche, R O; Legarda, D; Connell, N; Diamond, G

    2000-08-01

    Antimicrobial peptides are proposed to act as the first line of mucosal host defense by exerting broad-spectrum microbicidal activity against pathogenic microbes. Pleurocidin, a new 25-residue linear antimicrobial peptide, was recently isolated from the skin secretions of winter flounder (Pleuronectes americanus). The present study identifies the cDNA and gene encoding pleurocidin. The pleurocidin gene comprises four exons. Its upstream region demonstrates consensus binding sequences for transcription factors found in host defense genes in mammals, including sequences identical to the NF-IL6 and alpha and gamma interferon response elements. Pleurocidin is predicted to exist as a 68-residue prepropeptide that undergoes proteolytic cleavage of its amino-terminal signal and carboxy-terminal anionic propiece to form the active, mature peptide. Transmission electron microscopy localized pleurocidin to the mucin granules of skin and intestinal goblet cells. Significant synergy was shown to occur between pleurocidin and D-cycloserine targeting Mycobacterium smegmatis. Pleurocidin was functionally active at physiologic concentrations of magnesium and calcium; however, high concentrations of these divalent cations ablated pleurocidin's activity against a standard test strain, Escherichia coli D31. Pleurocidin was tested against bacterial and fungal clinical isolates and showed broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity. Together, these data support the hypothesis that pleurocidin participates in innate mucosal immunity, and it may prove to be a beneficial therapeutic agent.

  8. Multiple Functions of the New Cytokine-Based Antimicrobial Peptide Thymic Stromal Lymphopoietin (TSLP)

    PubMed Central

    Bjerkan, Louise; Sonesson, Andreas; Schenck, Karl

    2016-01-01

    Thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP) is a pleiotropic cytokine, hitherto mostly known to be involved in inflammatory responses and immunoregulation. The human tslp gene gives rise to two transcription and translation variants: a long form (lfTSLP) that is induced by inflammation, and a short, constitutively-expressed form (sfTSLP), that appears to be downregulated by inflammation. The TSLP forms can be produced by a number of cell types, including epithelial and dendritic cells (DCs). lfTSLP can activate mast cells, DCs, and T cells through binding to the lfTSLP receptor (TSLPR) and has a pro-inflammatory function. In contrast, sfTSLP inhibits cytokine secretion of DCs, but the receptor mediating this effect is unknown. Our recent studies have demonstrated that both forms of TSLP display potent antimicrobial activity, exceeding that of many other known antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), with sfTSLP having the strongest effect. The AMP activity is primarily mediated by the C-terminal region of the protein and is localized within a 34-mer peptide (MKK34) that spans the C-terminal α-helical region in TSLP. Fluorescent studies of peptide-treated bacteria, electron microscopy, and liposome leakage models showed that MKK34 exerted membrane-disrupting effects comparable to those of LL-37. Expression of TSLP in skin, oral mucosa, salivary glands, and intestine is part of the defense barrier that aids in the control of both commensal and pathogenic microbes. PMID:27399723

  9. Resurrecting inactive antimicrobial peptides from the lipopolysaccharide trap.

    PubMed

    Mohanram, Harini; Bhattacharjya, Surajit

    2014-01-01

    Host defense antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are a promising source of antibiotics for the treatment of multiple-drug-resistant pathogens. Lipopolysaccharide (LPS), the major component of the outer leaflet of the outer membrane of Gram-negative bacteria, functions as a permeability barrier against a variety of molecules, including AMPs. Further, LPS or endotoxin is the causative agent of sepsis killing 100,000 people per year in the United States alone. LPS can restrict the activity of AMPs inducing aggregations at the outer membrane, as observed for frog AMPs, temporins, and also in model AMPs. Aggregated AMPs, "trapped" by the outer membrane, are unable to traverse the cell wall, causing their inactivation. In this work, we show that these inactive AMPs can overcome LPS-induced aggregations while conjugated with a short LPS binding β-boomerang peptide motif and become highly bactericidal. The generated hybrid peptides exhibit activity against Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria in high-salt conditions and detoxify endotoxin. Structural and biophysical studies establish the mechanism of action of these peptides in LPS outer membrane. Most importantly, this study provides a new concept for the development of a potent broad-spectrum antibiotic with efficient outer membrane disruption as the mode of action.

  10. InverPep: A database of invertebrate antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Gómez, Esteban A; Giraldo, Paula; Orduz, Sergio

    2017-03-01

    The aim of this work was to construct InverPep, a database specialised in experimentally validated antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) from invertebrates. AMP data contained in InverPep were manually curated from other databases and the scientific literature. MySQL was integrated with the development platform Laravel; this framework allows to integrate programming in PHP with HTML and was used to design the InverPep web page's interface. InverPep contains 18 separated fields, including InverPep code, phylum and species source, peptide name, sequence, peptide length, secondary structure, molar mass, charge, isoelectric point, hydrophobicity, Boman index, aliphatic index and percentage of hydrophobic amino acids. CALCAMPI, an algorithm to calculate the physicochemical properties of multiple peptides simultaneously, was programmed in PERL language. To date, InverPep contains 702 experimentally validated AMPs from invertebrate species. All of the peptides contain information associated with their source, physicochemical properties, secondary structure, biological activity and links to external literature. Most AMPs in InverPep have a length between 10 and 50 amino acids, a positive charge, a Boman index between 0 and 2 kcal/mol, and 30-50% hydrophobic amino acids. InverPep includes 33 AMPs not reported in other databases. Besides, CALCAMPI and statistical analysis of InverPep data is presented. The InverPep database is available in English and Spanish. InverPep is a useful database to study invertebrate AMPs and its information could be used for the design of new peptides. The user-friendly interface of InverPep and its information can be freely accessed via a web-based browser at http://ciencias.medellin.unal.edu.co/gruposdeinvestigacion/prospeccionydisenobiomoleculas/InverPep/public/home_en. Copyright © 2016 International Society for Chemotherapy of Infection and Cancer. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Development of a catheter functionalized by a polydopamine peptide coating with antimicrobial and antibiofilm properties.

    PubMed

    Lim, Kaiyang; Chua, Ray Rong Yuan; Bow, Ho; Tambyah, Paul Anantharajah; Hadinoto, Kunn; Leong, Susanna Su Jan

    2015-03-01

    Catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTIs) are the most common hospital-acquired infections worldwide, aggravating the problem of antimicrobial resistance and patient morbidity. There is a need for a potent and robust antimicrobial coating for catheters to prevent these infections. An ideal coating agent should possess high antimicrobial efficacy and be easily and economically conjugated to the catheter surface. In this study, we report a simple yet effective immobilization strategy to tether a potent synthetic antimicrobial peptide, CWR11, onto catheter-relevant surfaces. Polydopamine (PD) was deposited as a thin adherent film onto a polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) surface to facilitate attachment of CWR11 onto the PD-functionalized polymer. Surface characterization of the CWR11-tethered surfaces confirmed the successful immobilization of peptides onto the PD-coated PDMS. The CWR11-immobilized PDMS slides displayed excellent antimicrobial (significant inhibition of 5×10(4) colony-forming units of CAUTI-relevant microbes) and antibiofilm (∼92% enhanced antibacterial adherence) properties. To assess its clinical relevance, the PD-based immobilization platform was translated onto commercial silicone-coated Foley catheters. The CWR11-impregnated catheter displayed potent bactericidal properties against both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, and retained its antimicrobial functionality for at least 21days, showing negligible cytotoxicity against human erythrocyte and uroepithelial cells. The outcome of this study demonstrates the proof-of-concept potential of a polydopamine-CWR11-functionalized catheter to combat CAUTIs. Copyright © 2014 Acta Materialia Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Antimicrobial Dendrimeric Peptides: Structure, Activity and New Therapeutic Applications.

    PubMed

    Scorciapino, Mariano A; Serra, Ilaria; Manzo, Giorgia; Rinaldi, Andrea C

    2017-03-03

    Microbial resistance to conventional antibiotics is one of the most outstanding medical and scientific challenges of our times. Despite the recognised need for new anti-infective agents, however, very few new drugs have been brought to the market and to the clinic in the last three decades. This review highlights the properties of a new class of antibiotics, namely dendrimeric peptides. These intriguing novel compounds, generally made of multiple peptidic sequences linked to an inner branched core, display an array of antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal activities, usually coupled to low haemolytic activity. In addition, several peptides synthesized in oligobranched form proved to be promising tools for the selective treatment of cancer cells.

  13. Searching for Synthetic Antimicrobial Peptides: An Experiment for Organic Chemistry Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vasquez, Thomas E., Jr.; Saldan~a, Cristina; Muzikar, Katy A.; Mashek, Debra; Liu, Jane M.

    2016-01-01

    This laboratory experiment provides undergraduate students enrolled in organic chemistry the opportunity to design and synthesize their own peptide, which is then tested for antimicrobial activity. After reading a primary scientific paper on antimicrobial peptides, students design and synthesize their own hexapeptide that they hypothesize will…

  14. Expression profiles of seven channel catfish antimicrobial peptides in response to Edwardsiella ictaluri infection

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Using quantitative PCR technique, the relative transcriptional levels of seven channel catfish antimicrobial peptide (AMP) genes [NK-lysin type 1, NK-lysin type 2, NK-lysin type 3, bactericidal permeability-increasing protein (BPI), cathepsin D, hepcidin, and liver-expressed antimicrobial peptide 2 ...

  15. Searching for Synthetic Antimicrobial Peptides: An Experiment for Organic Chemistry Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vasquez, Thomas E., Jr.; Saldan~a, Cristina; Muzikar, Katy A.; Mashek, Debra; Liu, Jane M.

    2016-01-01

    This laboratory experiment provides undergraduate students enrolled in organic chemistry the opportunity to design and synthesize their own peptide, which is then tested for antimicrobial activity. After reading a primary scientific paper on antimicrobial peptides, students design and synthesize their own hexapeptide that they hypothesize will…

  16. Antimicrobial activity of de novo designed cationic peptides against multi-resistant clinical isolates.

    PubMed

    Faccone, Diego; Veliz, Omar; Corso, Alejandra; Noguera, Martin; Martínez, Melina; Payes, Cristian; Semorile, Liliana; Maffía, Paulo Cesar

    2014-01-01

    Antibiotic resistance is one of the main problems concerning public health or clinical practice. Antimicrobial peptides appear as good candidates for the development of new therapeutic drugs. In this study we de novo designed a group of cationic antimicrobial peptides, analyzed its physicochemical properties, including its structure by circular dichroism and studied its antimicrobial properties against a panel of clinical isolates expressing different mechanisms of resistance. Three cationic alpha helical peptides exhibited antimicrobial activity comparable to, or even better than the comparator omiganan (MBI-226).

  17. How the antimicrobial peptides destroy bacteria cell membrane: Translocations vs. membrane buckling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Golubovic, Leonardo; Gao, Lianghui; Chen, Licui; Fang, Weihai

    2012-02-01

    In this study, coarse grained Dissipative Particle Dynamics simulation with implementation of electrostatic interactions is developed in constant pressure and surface tension ensemble to elucidate how the antimicrobial peptide molecules affect bilayer cell membrane structure and kill bacteria. We find that peptides with different chemical-physical properties exhibit different membrane obstructing mechanisms. Peptide molecules can destroy vital functions of the affected bacteria by translocating across their membranes via worm-holes, or by associating with membrane lipids to form hydrophilic cores trapped inside the hydrophobic domain of the membranes. In the latter scenario, the affected membranes are strongly corrugated (buckled) in accord with very recent experimental observations [G. E. Fantner et al., Nat. Nanotech., 5 (2010), pp. 280-285].

  18. Mechanisms of antimicrobial, cytolytic, and cell-penetrating peptides: from kinetics to thermodynamics†

    PubMed Central

    Almeida, Paulo F.; Pokorny, Antje

    2009-01-01

    The mechanisms of six different antimicrobial, cytolytic, and cell-penetrating peptides, including some of their variants, are discussed and compared. The specificity of these polypeptides varies, but they all form amphipathic α-helices when bound to membranes, and there are no striking differences in their sequences. We have examined the thermodynamics and kinetics of their interaction with phospholipid vesicles, namely binding and peptide-induced dye efflux. The thermodynamics of binding calculated using the Wimley-White interfacial hydrophobicity scale are in good agreement with the values derived from experiment. The generally accepted view that binding affinity determines functional specificity is also supported by experiment in model membranes. We now propose the hypothesis that it is the thermodynamics of peptide insertion into the membrane, from a surface-bound state, that determines the mechanism. PMID:19655791

  19. Cationic antimicrobial peptides disrupt the Streptococcus pyogenes ExPortal.

    PubMed

    Vega, Luis Alberto; Caparon, Michael G

    2012-09-01

    Although they possess a well-characterized ability to porate the bacterial membrane, emerging research suggests that cationic antimicrobial peptides (CAPs) can influence pathogen behaviour at levels that are sublethal. In this study, we investigated the interaction of polymyxin B and human neutrophil peptide (HNP-1) with the human pathogen Streptococcus pyogenes. At sublethal concentrations, these CAPs preferentially targeted the ExPortal, a unique microdomain of the S. pyogenes membrane, specialized for protein secretion and processing. A consequence of this interaction was the disruption of ExPortal organization and a redistribution of ExPortal components into the peripheral membrane. Redistribution was associated with inhibition of secretion of certain toxins, including the SpeB cysteine protease and the streptolysin O (SLO) cytolysin, but not SIC, a protein that protects S. pyogenes from CAPs. These data suggest a novel function for CAPs in targeting the ExPortal and interfering with secretion of factors required for infection and survival. This mechanism may prove valuable for the design of new types of antimicrobial agents to combat the emergence of antibiotic-resistant pathogens.

  20. Bioactive Antimicrobial Peptides as Therapeutics for Corneal Wounds and Infections

    PubMed Central

    Griffith, Gina L.; Kasus-Jacobi, Anne; Pereira, H. Anne

    2017-01-01

    Significance: More than 2 million eye injuries and infections occur each year in the United States that leave civilians and military members with reduced or complete vision loss due to the lack of effective therapeutics. Severe ocular injuries and infections occur in varied settings including the home, workplace, and battlefields. In this review, we discuss the potential of developing antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) as therapeutics for the treatment of corneal wounds and infections for which the current treatment options are inadequate. Recent Advances: Standard-of-care employs the use of fluorescein dye for the diagnosis of ocular defects and is followed by the use of antibiotics and/or steroids to treat the infection and reduce inflammation. Recent advances for treating corneal wounds include the development of amniotic membrane therapies, wound chambers, and drug-loaded hydrogels. In this review, we will discuss an innovative approach using AMPs with the dual effect of promoting corneal wound healing and clearing infections. Critical Issues: An important aspect of treating ocular injuries is that treatments need to be effective and administered expeditiously. This is especially important for injuries that occur during combat and in individuals who demonstrate delayed wound healing. To overcome gaps in current treatment modalities, bioactive peptides based on naturally occurring cationic antimicrobial proteins are being investigated as new therapeutics. Future Directions: The development of new therapeutics that can treat ocular infections and promote corneal wound healing, including the healing of persistent corneal epithelial defects, would be of great clinical benefit. PMID:28616359

  1. Macrocyclic Antimicrobial Peptides Engineered from ω-Conotoxin.

    PubMed

    Hemu, Xinya; Tam, James P

    2017-01-01

    The potent calcium channel blocker ω-conotoxin MVIIA is a linear cystine-knot peptide with multiple basic amino acids at both termini. This work shows that macrocyclization of MVIIA linking two positive-charge terminal clusters as a contiguous segment converts a conotoxin into an antimicrobial peptide. In addition, conversion of disulfide bonds to amino butyric acids improved the antimicrobial activity of the cyclic analogs. Ten macrocyclic analogs, with or without disulfide bonds, were prepared by both Boc and Fmoc chemistry using native chemical ligation. All cyclic analogs were active against selected Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria with minimal inhibitory concentrations in a low μM range. In contrast, MVIIA and its linear analog were inactive at concentrations up to 0.5 mM. The cyclic analogs also showed 2 to 3-fold improved chemotactic activity against human monocytes THP-1 compared with MVIIA. Reduction of molecular stability against thermal and acid treatment due to the reduced number of disulfide crosslinks can be partly restored by backbone cyclization. Together, these results show that macrocyclization and side chain modification of a linear conopeptide lead to a gain-of-function, which brings a new perspective in designing and engineering of peptidyl therapeutics. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  2. Antimicrobial peptides in marine invertebrate health and disease.

    PubMed

    Destoumieux-Garzón, Delphine; Rosa, Rafael Diego; Schmitt, Paulina; Barreto, Cairé; Vidal-Dupiol, Jeremie; Mitta, Guillaume; Gueguen, Yannick; Bachère, Evelyne

    2016-05-26

    Aquaculture contributes more than one-third of the animal protein from marine sources worldwide. A significant proportion of aquaculture products are derived from marine protostomes that are commonly referred to as 'marine invertebrates'. Among them, penaeid shrimp (Ecdysozosoa, Arthropoda) and bivalve molluscs (Lophotrochozoa, Mollusca) are economically important. Mass rearing of arthropods and molluscs causes problems with pathogens in aquatic ecosystems that are exploited by humans. Remarkably, species of corals (Cnidaria) living in non-exploited ecosystems also suffer from devastating infectious diseases that display intriguing similarities with those affecting farmed animals. Infectious diseases affecting wild and farmed animals that are present in marine environments are predicted to increase in the future. This paper summarizes the role of the main pathogens and their interaction with host immunity, with a specific focus on antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) and pathogen resistance against AMPs. We provide a detailed review of penaeid shrimp AMPs and their role at the interface between the host and its resident/pathogenic microbiota. We also briefly describe the relevance of marine invertebrate AMPs in an applied context.This article is part of the themed issue 'Evolutionary ecology of arthropod antimicrobial peptides'.

  3. Antimicrobial peptide-modified liposomes for bacteria targeted delivery of temoporfin in photodynamic antimicrobial chemotherapy.

    PubMed

    Yang, Kewei; Gitter, Burkhard; Rüger, Ronny; Wieland, Gerhard D; Chen, Ming; Liu, Xiangli; Albrecht, Volker; Fahr, Alfred

    2011-10-01

    Photodynamic antimicrobial chemotherapy (PACT) and antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are two promising strategies to combat the increasing prevalence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. To take advantage of these two strategies, we integrated a novel antimicrobial peptide (WLBU2) and a potent generation II photosensitizer (temoporfin) into liposomes by preparing WLBU2-modified liposomes, aiming at bacteria targeted delivery of temoporfin for PACT. WLBU2 was successfully coupled to temoporfin-loaded liposomes using a functional phospholipid. The delivery of temoporfin to bacteria was confirmed by fluorescence microscopy and flow cytometry, thus demonstrating that more temoporfin was delivered to bacteria by WLBU2-modified liposomes than by unmodified liposomes. Consequently, the WLBU2-modified liposomes eradicated all methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and induced a 3.3 log(10) reduction of Pseudomonas aeruginosa in the in vitro photodynamic inactivation test. These findings demonstrate that the use of AMP-modified liposomes is promising for bacteria-targeted delivery of photosensitizers and for improving the PACT efficiency against both gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria in the local infections. This journal is © The Royal Society of Chemistry and Owner Societies 2011

  4. Antimicrobial peptides and peptidomimetics - potent therapeutic allies for staphylococcal infections.

    PubMed

    Mohammad, Haroon; Thangamani, Shankar; Seleem, Mohamed N

    2015-01-01

    The pervasiveness of bacterial resistance to conventional antibiotics, particularly those associated with staphylococcal infections, has become a global epidemic. However, research involving antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) and their synthetic analogues has unearthed a potentially novel class of antibacterials for the treatment of an array of diseases caused by pathogenic bacteria, such as staphylococci. AMPs have several unique advantages over traditional antibiotics such as the projected slow emergence of bacterial resistance to these agents and their capability to modulate the host immune response to infection. Unfortunately, their susceptibility to proteolytic degradation, loss of antimicrobial activity due to serum binding or physiological concentration of salts, and toxicity to host tissues has limited their use as systemic agents thus far. Additionally, the presence of economic and regulatory obstacles has hindered the translation of AMPs, as antimicrobials, from the bench to the clinic. The present review delves further into the benefits and challenges of utilizing AMPs as antibacterial agents (particularly for staphylococcal infections), the methods which have been utilized to overcome their limitations, their successes and failures in clinical trials, and future avenues for researchers to pursue to develop AMPs as novel therapeutic allies in the treatment of bacterial infections.

  5. Antimicrobial peptides in oyster hemolymph: the bacterial connection.

    PubMed

    Defer, Diane; Desriac, Florie; Henry, Joël; Bourgougnon, Nathalie; Baudy-Floc'h, Michèle; Brillet, Benjamin; Le Chevalier, Patrick; Fleury, Yannick

    2013-06-01

    We have explored antimicrobial compounds in oyster hemolymph and purified four active peptides with molecular masses of 4464, 3158, 655 and 636 Da. While no exploitable structural elements were obtained for the former three, a partial amino acid sequence (X-P-P-X-X-I-V) was obtained for the latter, named Cg-636. Due to both its low MM and the presence of exotic amino acid residue (X), we suspected a bacterial origin and tracked cultivable hemolymph-resident bacteria of oyster for their antimicrobial abilities. Supernatants of 224 hemolymph resident bacteria coming from 60 oysters were screened against 10 target bacteria including aquaculture pathogens. Around 2% (5 strains) revealed antimicrobial activities. They belong to Pseudoalteromonas and Vibrio genera. Two closely related strains named hCg-6 and hCg-42 have been shown to produce Bacteriocin-Like Inhibitory Substances (BLIS) even in oyster hemolymph. We report herein first BLIS-producing bacteria isolated from bivalve hemolymph. These results strongly suggest that hemolymph resident bacteria may prevent pathogen establishment and pave the way for considering a role of resident bacteria into bivalve defense.

  6. Analysis of the antimicrobial activities of a chemokine-derived peptide (CDAP-4) on Pseudomonas aeruginosa

    SciTech Connect

    Martinez-Becerra, Francisco; Dominguez-Ramirez, Lenin; Mendoza-Hernandez, Guillermo; Lopez-Vidal, Yolanda; Soldevila, Gloria . E-mail: garciaze@servidor.unam.mx

    2007-04-06

    Chemokines are key molecules involved in the control of leukocyte trafficking. Recently, a novel function as antimicrobial proteins has been described. CCL13 is the only member of the MCP chemokine subfamily displaying antimicrobial activity. To determine Key residues involved in its antimicrobial activity, CCL13 derived peptides were synthesized and tested against several bacterial strains, including Pseudomonas aeruginosa. One of these peptides, corresponding to the C-terminal region of CCL13 (CDAP-4) displayed good antimicrobial activity. Electron microscopy studies revealed remarkable morphological changes after CDAP-4 treatment. By computer modeling, CDAP-4 in {alpha} helical configuration generated a positive electrostatic potential that extended beyond the surface of the molecule. This feature is similar to other antimicrobial peptides. Altogether, these findings indicate that the antimicrobial activity was displayed by CCL13 resides to some extent at the C-terminal region. Furthermore, CDAP-4 could be considered a good antimicrobial candidate with a potential use against pathogens including P. aeruginosa.

  7. Staphylococcus epidermidis Antimicrobial δ-Toxin (Phenol-Soluble Modulin-γ) Cooperates with Host Antimicrobial Peptides to Kill Group A Streptococcus

    PubMed Central

    Cogen, Anna L.; Yamasaki, Kenshi; Muto, Jun; Sanchez, Katheryn M.; Crotty Alexander, Laura; Tanios, Jackelyn; Lai, Yuping; Kim, Judy E.; Nizet, Victor; Gallo, Richard L.

    2010-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides play an important role in host defense against pathogens. Recently, phenol-soluble modulins (PSMs) from Staphylococcus epidermidis (S. epidermidis) were shown to interact with lipid membranes, form complexes, and exert antimicrobial activity. Based on the abundance and innocuity of the cutaneous resident S. epidermidis, we hypothesized that their PSMs contribute to host defense. Here we show that S. epidermidis δ-toxin (PSMγ) is normally present in the epidermis and sparsely in the dermis of human skin using immunohistochemistry. Synthetic δ-toxin interacted with neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) and colocalized with cathelicidin while also inducing NET formation in human neutrophils. In antimicrobial assays against Group A Streptococcus (GAS), δ-toxin cooperated with CRAMP, hBD2, and hBD3. In whole blood, addition of δ-toxin exerted a bacteriostatic effect on GAS, and in NETs, δ-toxin increased their killing capacity against this pathogen. Coimmunoprecipitation and tryptophan spectroscopy demonstrated direct binding of δ-toxin to host antimicrobial peptides LL-37, CRAMP, hBD2, and hBD3. Finally, in a mouse wound model, GAS survival was reduced (along with Mip-2 cytokine levels) when the wounds were pretreated with δ-toxin. Thus, these data suggest that S. epidermidis–derived δ-toxin cooperates with the host-derived antimicrobial peptides in the innate immune system to reduce survival of an important human bacterial pathogen. PMID:20052280

  8. Antimicrobial activities of amphiphilic peptides covalently bonded to a water-insoluble resin.

    PubMed Central

    Haynie, S L; Crum, G A; Doele, B A

    1995-01-01

    A series of polymer-bound antimicrobial peptides was prepared, and the peptides were tested for their antimicrobial activities. The immobilized peptides were prepared by a strategy that used solid-phase peptide synthesis that linked the carboxy-terminal amino acid with an ethylenediamine-modified polyamide resin (PepsynK). The acid-stable, permanent amide bond between the support and the nascent peptide renders the peptide resistant to cleavage from the support during the final acid-catalyzed deprotection step in the synthesis. Select immobilized peptides containing amino acid sequences that ranged from the naturally occurring magainin to simpler synthetic sequences with idealized secondary structures were excellent antimicrobial agents against several organisms. The immobilized peptides typically reduced the number of viable cells by > or = 5 log units. We show that the reduction in cell numbers cannot be explained by the action of a soluble component. We observed no leached or hydrolyzed peptide from the resin, nor did we observe any antimicrobial activity in soluble extracts from the immobilized peptide. The immobilized peptides were washed and reused for repeated microbial contact and killing. These results suggest that the surface actions by magainins and structurally related antimicrobial peptides are sufficient for their lethal activities. PMID:7726486

  9. Multiscale Models of the Antimicrobial Peptide Protegrin-1 on Gram-Negative Bacteria Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Bolintineanu, Dan S.; Vivcharuk, Victor; Kaznessis, Yiannis N.

    2012-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are naturally-occurring molecules that exhibit strong antibiotic properties against numerous infectious bacterial strains. Because of their unique mechanism of action, they have been touted as a potential source for novel antibiotic drugs. We present a summary of computational investigations in our lab aimed at understanding this unique mechanism of action, in particular the development of models that provide a quantitative connection between molecular-level biophysical phenomena and relevant biological effects. Our work is focused on protegrins, a potent class of AMPs that attack bacteria by associating with the bacterial membrane and forming transmembrane pores that facilitate the unrestricted transport of ions. Using fully atomistic molecular dynamics simulations, we have computed the thermodynamics of peptide-membrane association and insertion, as well as peptide aggregation. We also present a multi-scale analysis of the ion transport properties of protegrin pores, ranging from atomistic molecular dynamics simulations to mesoscale continuum models of single-pore electrodiffusion to models of transient ion transport from bacterial cells. Overall, this work provides a quantitative mechanistic description of the mechanism of action of protegrin antimicrobial peptides across multiple length and time scales. PMID:23109834

  10. Penetration of Milk-Derived Antimicrobial Peptides into Phospholipid Monolayers as Model Biomembranes

    PubMed Central

    Rogalska, Ewa; Więcław-Czapla, Katarzyna

    2013-01-01

    Three antimicrobial peptides derived from bovine milk proteins were examined with regard to penetration into insoluble monolayers formed with 1,2-dipalmitoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DPPC) or 1,2-dipalmitoyl-sn-glycero-3-phospho-rac-(1-glycerol) sodium salt (DPPG). Effects on surface pressure (Π) and electric surface potential (ΔV) were measured, Π with a platinum Wilhelmy plate and ΔV with a vibrating plate. The penetration measurements were performed under stationary diffusion conditions and upon the compression of the monolayers. The two type measurements showed greatly different effects of the peptide-lipid interactions. Results of the stationary penetration show that the peptide interactions with DPPC monolayer are weak, repulsive, and nonspecific while the interactions with DPPG monolayer are significant, attractive, and specific. These results are in accord with the fact that antimicrobial peptides disrupt bacteria membranes (negative) while no significant effect on the host membranes (neutral) is observed. No such discrimination was revealed from the compression isotherms. The latter indicate that squeezing the penetrant out of the monolayer upon compression does not allow for establishing the penetration equilibrium, so the monolayer remains supersaturated with the penetrant and shows an under-equilibrium orientation within the entire compression range, practically. PMID:24455264

  11. Effect of hydrocarbon stapling on the properties of α-helical antimicrobial peptides isolated from the venom of hymenoptera.

    PubMed

    Chapuis, Hubert; Slaninová, Jiřina; Bednárová, Lucie; Monincová, Lenka; Buděšínský, Miloš; Čeřovský, Václav

    2012-11-01

    The impact of inserting hydrocarbon staples into short α-helical antimicrobial peptides lasioglossin III and melectin (antimicrobial peptides of wild bee venom) on their biological and biophysical properties has been examined. The stapling was achieved by ring-closing olefin metathesis, either between two S-2-(4'-pentenyl) alanine residues (S (5)) incorporated at i and i + 4 positions or between R-2-(7'-octenyl) alanine (R (8)) and S (5) incorporated at the i and i + 7 positions, respectively. We prepared several lasioglossin III and melectin analogs with a single staple inserted into different positions within the peptide chains as well as analogs with double staples. The stapled peptides exhibited a remarkable increase in hemolytic activity, while their antimicrobial activities decreased. Some single stapled peptides showed a higher resistance against proteolytic degradation than native ones, while the double stapled analogs were substantially more resistant. The CD spectra of the singly stapled peptides measured in water showed only a slightly better propensity to form α-helical structure when compared to native peptides, whereas the doubly stapled analogs exhibited dramatically enhanced α-helicity.

  12. Enhanced Amphiphilic Profile of a Short β-Stranded Peptide Improves Its Antimicrobial Activity

    PubMed Central

    Manzo, Giorgia; Scorciapino, Mariano A.; Wadhwani, Parvesh; Bürck, Jochen; Montaldo, Nicola Pietro; Pintus, Manuela; Sanna, Roberta; Casu, Mariano; Giuliani, Andrea; Pirri, Giovanna; Luca, Vincenzo; Ulrich, Anne S.; Rinaldi, Andrea C.

    2015-01-01

    SB056 is a novel semi-synthetic antimicrobial peptide with a dimeric dendrimer scaffold. Active against both Gram-negative and -positive bacteria, its mechanism has been attributed to a disruption of bacterial membranes. The branched peptide was shown to assume a β-stranded conformation in a lipidic environment. Here, we report on a rational modification of the original, empirically derived linear peptide sequence [WKKIRVRLSA-NH2, SB056-lin]. We interchanged the first two residues [KWKIRVRLSA-NH2, β-SB056-lin] to enhance the amphipathic profile, in the hope that a more regular β-strand would lead to a better antimicrobial performance. MIC values confirmed that an enhanced amphiphilic profile indeed significantly increases activity against both Gram-positive and -negative strains. The membrane binding affinity of both peptides, measured by tryptophan fluorescence, increased with an increasing ratio of negatively charged/zwitterionic lipids. Remarkably, β-SB056-lin showed considerable binding even to purely zwitterionic membranes, unlike the original sequence, indicating that besides electrostatic attraction also the amphipathicity of the peptide structure plays a fundamental role in binding, by stabilizing the bound state. Synchrotron radiation circular dichroism and solid-state 19F-NMR were used to characterize and compare the conformation and mobility of the membrane bound peptides. Both SB056-lin and β-SB056-lin adopt a β-stranded conformation upon binding POPC vesicles, but the former maintains an intrinsic structural disorder that also affects its aggregation tendency. Upon introducing some anionic POPG into the POPC matrix, the sequence-optimized β-SB056-lin forms well-ordered β-strands once electro-neutrality is approached, and it aggregates into more extended β-sheets as the concentration of anionic lipids in the bilayer is raised. The enhanced antimicrobial activity of the analogue correlates with the formation of these extended β-sheets, which

  13. Antimicrobial Activity of Peptides Derived from Olive Flounder Lipopolysaccharide Binding Protein/Bactericidal Permeability-Increasing Protein (LBP/BPI)

    PubMed Central

    Nam, Bo-Hye; Moon, Ji-Young; Park, Eun-Hee; Kim, Young-Ok; Kim, Dong-Gyun; Kong, Hee Jeong; Kim, Woo-Jin; Jee, Young Ju; An, Cheul Min; Park, Nam Gyu; Seo, Jung-Kil

    2014-01-01

    We describe the antimicrobial function of peptides derived from the C-terminus of the olive flounder LBP BPI precursor protein. The investigated peptides, namely, ofLBP1N, ofLBP2A, ofLBP4N, ofLBP5A, and ofLBP6A, formed α-helical structures, showing significant antimicrobial activity against several Gram-negative bacteria, Gram-positive bacteria, and the yeast Candida albicans, but very limited hemolytic activities. The biological activities of these five analogs were evaluated against biomembranes or artificial membranes for the development of candidate therapeutic agents. Gel retardation studies revealed that peptides bound to DNA and inhibited migration on an agarose gel. In addition, we demonstrated that ofLBP6A inhibited polymerase chain reaction. These results suggested that the ofLBP-derived peptide bactericidal mechanism may be related to the interaction with intracellular components such as DNA or polymerase. PMID:25329706

  14. A molecular dynamics and circular dichroism study of a novel synthetic antimicrobial peptide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rodina, N. P.; Yudenko, A. N.; Terterov, I. N.; Eliseev, I. E.

    2013-08-01

    Antimicrobial peptides are a class of small, usually positively charged amphiphilic peptides that are used by the innate immune system to combat bacterial infection in multicellular eukaryotes. Antimicrobial peptides are known for their broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity and thus can be used as a basis for a development of new antibiotics against multidrug-resistant bacteria. The most challengeous task on the way to a therapeutic use of antimicrobial peptides is a rational design of new peptides with enhanced activity and reduced toxicity. Here we report a molecular dynamics and circular dichroism study of a novel synthetic antimicrobial peptide D51. This peptide was earlier designed by Loose et al. using a linguistic model of natural antimicrobial peptides. Molecular dynamics simulation of the peptide folding in explicit solvent shows fast formation of two antiparallel beta strands connected by a beta-turn that is confirmed by circular dichroism measurements. Obtained from simulation amphipatic conformation of the peptide is analysed and possible mechanism of it's interaction with bacterial membranes together with ways to enhance it's antibacterial activity are suggested.

  15. Additivity and synergy between an antimicrobial peptide and inhibitory ions.

    PubMed

    Walkenhorst, William F; Sundrud, Justine N; Laviolette, Joshua M

    2014-09-01

    Recently we described the pH dependence of activity for a family of cationic antimicrobial peptides (CAMPs) selected from a combinatorial library. In the current work we report on the effects of toxic ions (Cu(2+), Zn(2+), and F(-)) and the chelator EDTA on the activity profiles of one member of this family, the 12-residue cationic antimicrobial peptide *ARVA, against a panel of microorganisms. All four ions exhibited either synergy or additivity with *ARVA for all organisms tested with the exception of *ARVA combined with NaF against Candida albicans which exhibited indifference. CuCl2 and ZnCl2 exhibited synergy with *ARVA against both the Gram negative Pseudomonas aeruginosa and the Gram positive Staphylococcus aureus as well as strong additivity against Escherichia coli at submillimolar concentrations. The chelator EDTA was synergistic with *ARVA against the two Gram negative organisms but showed only simple additivity with S. aureus and C. albicans despite their much lower MICs with EDTA. This effect may be related to the known differences in the divalent ion binding properties of the Gram negative LPS layer as compared to the peptidoglycan layer of the Gram positive organism. Unlike the other ions, NaF showed only additivity or indifference when combined with *ARVA and required much higher concentrations for activity. The yeast C. albicans did not show synergy or strong additivity with any of the inhibitory compounds tested. The effects of toxic ions and chelators observed here have important implications for applications using CAMPs and for the design of novel formulations involving CAMPs. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Interfacially Active Peptides and Proteins. Guest Editors: William C. Wimley and Kalina Hristova. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Production of cecropin A antimicrobial peptide in rice seed endosperm

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Cecropin A is a natural antimicrobial peptide that exhibits rapid, potent and long-lasting lytic activity against a broad spectrum of pathogens, thus having great biotechnological potential. Here, we report a system for producing bioactive cecropin A in rice seeds. Results Transgenic rice plants expressing a codon-optimized synthetic cecropin A gene drived by an endosperm-specific promoter, either the glutelin B1 or glutelin B4 promoter, were generated. The signal peptide sequence from either the glutelin B1 or the glutelin B4 were N-terminally fused to the coding sequence of the cecropin A. We also studied whether the presence of the KDEL endoplasmic reticulum retention signal at the C-terminal has an effect on cecropin A subcellular localization and accumulation. The transgenic rice plants showed stable transgene integration and inheritance. We show that cecropin A accumulates in protein storage bodies in the rice endosperm, particularly in type II protein bodies, supporting that the glutelin N-terminal signal peptides play a crucial role in directing the cecropin A to this organelle, independently of being tagged with the KDEL endoplasmic reticulum retention signal. The production of cecropin A in transgenic rice seeds did not affect seed viability or seedling growth. Furthermore, transgenic cecropin A seeds exhibited resistance to infection by fungal and bacterial pathogens (Fusarium verticillioides and Dickeya dadantii, respectively) indicating that the in planta-produced cecropin A is biologically active. Conclusions Rice seeds can sustain bioactive cecropin A production and accumulation in protein bodies. The system might benefit the production of this antimicrobial agent for subsequent applications in crop protection and food preservation. PMID:24755305

  17. Production of cecropin A antimicrobial peptide in rice seed endosperm.

    PubMed

    Bundó, Mireia; Montesinos, Laura; Izquierdo, Esther; Campo, Sonia; Mieulet, Delphine; Guiderdoni, Emmanuel; Rossignol, Michel; Badosa, Esther; Montesinos, Emilio; San Segundo, Blanca; Coca, María

    2014-04-22

    Cecropin A is a natural antimicrobial peptide that exhibits rapid, potent and long-lasting lytic activity against a broad spectrum of pathogens, thus having great biotechnological potential. Here, we report a system for producing bioactive cecropin A in rice seeds. Transgenic rice plants expressing a codon-optimized synthetic cecropin A gene drived by an endosperm-specific promoter, either the glutelin B1 or glutelin B4 promoter, were generated. The signal peptide sequence from either the glutelin B1 or the glutelin B4 were N-terminally fused to the coding sequence of the cecropin A. We also studied whether the presence of the KDEL endoplasmic reticulum retention signal at the C-terminal has an effect on cecropin A subcellular localization and accumulation. The transgenic rice plants showed stable transgene integration and inheritance. We show that cecropin A accumulates in protein storage bodies in the rice endosperm, particularly in type II protein bodies, supporting that the glutelin N-terminal signal peptides play a crucial role in directing the cecropin A to this organelle, independently of being tagged with the KDEL endoplasmic reticulum retention signal. The production of cecropin A in transgenic rice seeds did not affect seed viability or seedling growth. Furthermore, transgenic cecropin A seeds exhibited resistance to infection by fungal and bacterial pathogens (Fusarium verticillioides and Dickeya dadantii, respectively) indicating that the in planta-produced cecropin A is biologically active. Rice seeds can sustain bioactive cecropin A production and accumulation in protein bodies. The system might benefit the production of this antimicrobial agent for subsequent applications in crop protection and food preservation.

  18. Design, Characterization, and Antimicrobial Activity of a Novel Antimicrobial Peptide Derived from Bovine Lactophoricin.

    PubMed

    Kim, Ji-Sun; Joeng, Ji-Ho; Kim, Yongae

    2017-04-28

    Lactophoricin (LPcin), which is a part of proteose peptone isolated from bovine milk, is a cationic amphipathic α-helical antimicrobial peptide. Its truncated variants and mutated analogs were designed and their antimicrobial activities were evaluated by using various assays, like broth dilution methods and disk diffusion methods as well as hemolysis assay. Three analogs, LPcin-C8 (LPcin-YK1), LPcin-T2&6W (LPcin-YK2), and LPcin-T2&6W-C8 (LPcin-YK3), which showed better antibiotic activities than LPcin, were selected. Their secondary structures were also characterized by using CD spectropolarimetry. These three analogs of LPcin could be used as an alternative source of powerful antibacterial agents.

  19. Hepcidins in amphibians and fishes: Antimicrobial peptides or iron-regulatory hormones?

    PubMed

    Shi, Jishu; Camus, Alvin C

    2006-01-01

    Hepcidin, originally identified as a 25 amino acid peptide antibiotic produced in the liver, is a key regulator of iron balance and recycling in humans and mice. Closely related hepcidin genes and peptides also have been identified in other mammals, amphibians, and a number of fish species. We hypothesize that hepcidin, the iron-regulatory hormone in humans, may have evolved from an antimicrobial peptide in fishes. In this review we will highlight the evidence that indicates hepcidin evolved from an antimicrobial peptide to an iron-regulatory hormone in vertebrate evolution. This evidence includes the discovery of hepcidin as an antimicrobial peptide and iron-regulatory hormone, structural comparison of mammalian hepcidins and nonmammalian hepcidins, and the cellular and molecular evidence indicating that, while some fish hepcidins may serve only as antimicrobial peptides, other fish and amphibian hepcidins may function as iron regulators.

  20. Discovery of novel antimicrobial peptides with unusual cysteine motifs in dandelion Taraxacum officinale Wigg. flowers.

    PubMed

    Astafieva, A A; Rogozhin, E A; Odintsova, T I; Khadeeva, N V; Grishin, E V; Egorov, Ts A

    2012-08-01

    Three novel antimicrobial peptides designated ToAMP1, ToAMP2 and ToAMP3 were purified from Taraxacum officinale flowers. Their amino acid sequences were determined. The peptides are cationic and cysteine-rich and consist of 38, 44 and 42 amino acid residues for ToAMP1, ToAMP2 and ToAMP3, respectively. Importantly, according to cysteine motifs, the peptides are representatives of two novel previously unknown families of plant antimicrobial peptides. ToAMP1 and ToAMP2 share high sequence identity and belong to 6-Cys-containing antimicrobial peptides, while ToAMP3 is a member of a distinct 8-Cys family. The peptides were shown to display high antimicrobial activity both against fungal and bacterial pathogens, and therefore represent new promising molecules for biotechnological and medicinal applications. Crown Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Antimicrobial peptides as novel anti-tuberculosis therapeutics.

    PubMed

    Silva, João P; Appelberg, Rui; Gama, Francisco Miguel

    2016-01-01

    Tuberculosis (TB), a disease caused by the human pathogen Mycobacterium tuberculosis, has recently joined HIV/AIDS as the world's deadliest infectious disease, affecting around 9.6 million people worldwide in 2014. Of those, about 1.2 million died from the disease. Resistance acquisition to existing antibiotics, with the subsequent emergence of Multi-Drug Resistant mycobacteria strains, together with an increasing economic burden, has urged the development of new anti-TB drugs. In this scope, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), which are small, cationic and amphipathic peptides that make part of the innate immune system, now arise as promising candidates for TB treatment. In this review, we analyze the potential of AMPs for this application. We address the mechanisms of action, advantages and disadvantages over conventional antibiotics and how problems associated with its use may be overcome to boost their therapeutic potential. Additionally, we address the challenges of translational development from benchside to bedside, evaluate the current development pipeline and analyze the expected global impact from a socio-economic standpoint. The quest for more efficient and more compliant anti-TB drugs, associated with the great therapeutic potential of emerging AMPs and the rising peptide market, provide an optimal environment for the emergence of AMPs as promising therapies. Still, their pharmacological properties need to be enhanced and manufacturing-associated issues need to be addressed.

  2. Designing carbohydrate nanoparticles for prolonged efficacy of antimicrobial peptide.

    PubMed

    Bi, Lin; Yang, Lei; Narsimhan, Ganesan; Bhunia, Arun K; Yao, Yuan

    2011-03-10

    In this work, carbohydrate nanoparticles were created to prolong the efficacy of antimicrobial peptide against pathogens. Nisin and Listeria monocytogenes were used as the peptide and pathogen models, respectively, and phytoglycogen (PG)-based nanoparticles were developed as carriers of nisin. PG from su1 mutant maize was subjected to β-amylolysis as well as subsequent succinate or octenyl succinate substitutions. The goal was to minimize the loss of peptide during storage and meanwhile realize an effective release in the presence of bacteria. The capabilities of PG derivatives as carriers of nisin were evaluated using centrifugal ultrafiltration, zeta-potential, and the initial availability of nisin against L. monocytogenes. All methods indicated that nisin loading was favored by a high degree of substitution (DS), presence of hydrophobic octenyl moiety, and β-amylolysis of PG nanoparticles. To evaluate the prolonged nisin efficacy, preparations containing nisin and PG derivatives were loaded into a BHI-agar deep-well model (mimicking nisin depletion at the nutrient-containing surface). The residual inhibitory activities of preparations against L. monocytogenes were monitored during 21 days of storage at 4 °C. The results showed that all PG derivatives led to the prolonged retention of nisin activity and the longest retention was associated with high DS, β-amylolysis, and octenyl succinate. Evidently, both electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions are the driving forces of nisin adsorption, and the glucan structure at the nanoparticle surface also affects nisin loading and retention during storage.

  3. Effects of Antimicrobial Peptide Revealed by Simulations: Translocation, Pore Formation, Membrane Corrugation and Euler Buckling

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Licui; Jia, Nana; Gao, Lianghui; Fang, Weihai; Golubovic, Leonardo

    2013-01-01

    We explore the effects of the peripheral and transmembrane antimicrobial peptides on the lipid bilayer membrane by using the coarse grained Dissipative Particle Dynamics simulations. We study peptide/lipid membrane complexes by considering peptides with various structure, hydrophobicity and peptide/lipid interaction strength. The role of lipid/water interaction is also discussed. We discuss a rich variety of membrane morphological changes induced by peptides, such as pore formation, membrane corrugation and Euler buckling. PMID:23579956

  4. Visualizing attack of Escherichia coli by the antimicrobial peptide human defensin 5.

    PubMed

    Chileveru, Haritha R; Lim, Shion A; Chairatana, Phoom; Wommack, Andrew J; Chiang, I-Ling; Nolan, Elizabeth M

    2015-03-10

    Human α-defensin 5 (HD5) is a 32-residue cysteine-rich host-defense peptide that exhibits broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity and contributes to innate immunity in the human gut and other organ systems. Despite many years of investigation, its antimicrobial mechanism of action remains unclear. In this work, we report that HD5ox, the oxidized form of this peptide that exhibits three regiospecific disulfide bonds, causes distinct morphological changes to Escherichia coli and other Gram-negative microbes. These morphologies include bleb formation, cellular elongation, and clumping. The blebs are up to ∼1 μm wide and typically form at the site of cell division or cell poles. Studies with E. coli expressing cytoplasmic GFP reveal that HD5ox treatment causes GFP emission to localize in the bleb. To probe the cellular uptake of HD5ox and subsequent localization, we describe the design and characterization of a fluorophore-HD5 conjugate family. By employing these peptides, we demonstrate that fluorophore-HD5ox conjugates harboring the rhodamine and coumarin fluorophores enter the E. coli cytoplasm. On the basis of the fluorescence profiles, each of these fluorophore-HD5ox conjugates localizes to the site of cell division and cell poles. These studies support the notion that HD5ox, at least in part, exerts its antibacterial activity against E. coli and other Gram-negative microbes in the cytoplasm.

  5. Perspectives on the evolutionary ecology of arthropod antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Rolff, Jens; Schmid-Hempel, Paul

    2016-05-26

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are important elements of the innate immune defence in multicellular organisms that target and kill microbes. Here, we reflect on the various points that are raised by the authors of the 11 contributions to a special issue of Philosophical Transactions on the 'evolutionary ecology of arthropod antimicrobial peptides'. We see five interesting topics emerging. (i) AMP genes in insects, and perhaps in arthropods more generally, evolve much slower than most other immune genes. One explanation refers to the constraints set by AMPs being part of a finely tuned defence system. A new view argues that AMPs are under strong stabilizing selection. Regardless, this striking observation still invites many more questions than have been answered so far. (ii) AMPs almost always are expressed in combinations and sometimes show expression patterns that are dependent on the infectious agent. While it is often assumed that this can be explained by synergistic interactions, such interactions have rarely been demonstrated and need to be studied further. Moreover, how to define synergy in the first place remains difficult and needs to be addressed. (iii) AMPs play a very important role in mediating the interaction between a host and its mutualistic or commensal microbes. This has only been studied in a very small number of (insect) species. It has become clear that the very same AMPs play different roles in different situations and hence are under concurrent selection. (iv) Different environments shape the physiology of organisms; especially the host-associated microbial communities should impact on the evolution host AMPs. Studies in social insects and some organisms from extreme environments seem to support this notion, but, overall, the evidence for adaptation of AMPs to a given environment is scant. (v) AMPs are considered or already developed as new drugs in medicine. However, bacteria can evolve resistance to AMPs. Therefore, in the light of our

  6. Synthetic β-sheet forming peptide amphiphiles for treatment of fungal keratitis.

    PubMed

    Wu, Hong; Ong, Zhan Yuin; Liu, Shaoqiong; Li, Yan; Wiradharma, Nikken; Yang, Yi Yan; Ying, Jackie Y

    2015-03-01

    Fungal keratitis is a leading cause of ocular morbidity. It is frequently misdiagnosed as bacterial keratitis, causing a delay in proper treatment. Furthermore, due to the lack of safe and effective anti-fungal agents for clinical use, treatment of fugal keratitis remains a challenge. In recent years, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have received considerable attention as potent and broad-spectrum antimicrobial agents with the potential to overcome antibiotics resistance. We previously reported the design of short synthetic β-sheet forming peptides (IKIK)2-NH2 and (IRIK)2-NH2 with excellent antimicrobial activities and selectivities against various clinically relevant microorganisms, including Gram-positive Staphylococcus epidermidis and Staphylococcus aureus, Gram-negative Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and yeast Candida albicans (C. albicans). In this study, we evaluated the application of the two most promising synthetic β-sheet forming peptide candidates for in vivo fungal keratitis treatment in comparison with the commercially available amphotericin B. It was found that topical solutions of the designed peptides are safe, and as effective as the clinically used amphotericin B. Compared to the costly and unstable amphotericin B, (IKIK)2-NH2 and (IRIK)2-NH2 are water-soluble, less expensive and stable. Thus, the synthetic β-sheet forming peptides are presented as promising candidates for the treatment of fungal keratitis.

  7. Structure-activity relationship of Trp-containing analogs of the antimicrobial peptide gomesin.

    PubMed

    Domingues, Tatiana M; Buri, Marcus V; Daffre, Sirlei; Campana, Patricia T; Riske, Karin A; Miranda, Antonio

    2014-06-01

    Gomesin (Gm) has a broad antimicrobial activity making it of great interest for development of drugs. In this study, we analyzed three Gm analogs, [Trp(1) ]-Gm, [Trp(7) ]-Gm, and [Trp(9) ]-Gm, in an attempt to gain insight into the contributions of different regions of the peptide sequence to its activity. The incorporation of the tryptophan residue in different positions has no effect on the antimicrobial and hemolytic activities of the Gm analogs in relation to Gm. Spectroscopic studies (circular dichroism, fluorescence and absorbance) of Gm and its analogs were performed in the presence of SDS, below and above its critical micelle concentration (CMC) (~8 mM), in order to monitor structural changes induced by the interaction with this anionic surfactant (0-15 mM). Interestingly, we found that the analogs interact more strongly with SDS at low concentrations (0.3-6.0 mM) than close to or above its CMC. This suggests that SDS monomers are able to cover the whole peptide, forming large detergent-peptide aggregates. On the other hand, the peptides interact differently with SDS micelles, inserting partially into the micelle core. Among the peptides, Trp in position 1 becomes more motionally-restricted in the presence of SDS, probably because this residue is located at the N-terminal region, which presents higher conformational freedom to interact stronger with SDS molecules. Trp residues in positions 7 and 9, close to and in the region of the turn of the molecule, respectively, induced a more constrained structure and the compounds cannot insert deeper into the micelle core or be completely buried by SDS monomers. Copyright © 2014 European Peptide Society and John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  8. Activity Determinants of Helical Antimicrobial Peptides: A Large-Scale Computational Study

    PubMed Central

    He, Yi; Lazaridis, Themis

    2013-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), produced by a wide range of organisms, have attracted attention due to their potential use as novel antibiotics. The majority of these peptides are cationic and are thought to function by permeabilizing the bacterial membrane, either by making pores or by dissolving it (‘carpet’ model). A key hypothesis in the literature is that antimicrobial and hemolytic activity correlate with binding affinity to anionic and zwitterionic membranes, respectively. Here we test this hypothesis by using binding free energy data collected from the literature and theoretical binding energies calculated from implicit membrane models for 53 helical AMPs. We indeed find a correlation between binding energy and biological activity, depending on membrane anionic content: antibacterial activity correlates best with transfer energy to membranes with anionic lipid fraction higher than 30% and hemolytic activity correlates best with transfer energy to a 10% anionic membrane. However, the correlations are weak, with correlation coefficient up to 0.4. Weak correlations of the biological activities have also been found with other physical descriptors of the peptides, such as surface area occupation, which correlates significantly with antibacterial activity; insertion depth, which correlates significantly with hemolytic activity; and structural fluctuation, which correlates significantly with both activities. The membrane surface coverage by many peptides at the MIC is estimated to be much lower than would be required for the ‘carpet’ mechanism. Those peptides that are active at low surface coverage tend to be those identified in the literature as pore-forming. The transfer energy from planar membrane to cylindrical and toroidal pores was also calculated for these peptides. The transfer energy to toroidal pores is negative in almost all cases while that to cylindrical pores is more favorable in neutral than in anionic membranes. The transfer energy to pores

  9. Bcr1 Functions Downstream of Ssd1 To Mediate Antimicrobial Peptide Resistance in Candida albicans

    PubMed Central

    Jung, Sook-In; Finkel, Jonathan S.; Solis, Norma V.; Chaili, Siyang; Mitchell, Aaron P.; Yeaman, Michael R.

    2013-01-01

    In order to colonize the host and cause disease, Candida albicans must avoid being killed by host defense peptides. Previously, we determined that the regulatory protein Ssd1 governs antimicrobial peptide resistance in C. albicans. Here, we sought to identify additional genes whose products govern susceptibility to antimicrobial peptides. We discovered that a bcr1Δ/Δ mutant, like the ssd1Δ/Δ mutant, had increased susceptibility to the antimicrobial peptides, protamine, RP-1, and human β defensin-2. Homozygous deletion of BCR1 in the ssd1Δ/Δ mutant did not result in a further increase in antimicrobial peptide susceptibility. Exposure of the bcr1Δ/Δ and ssd1Δ/Δ mutants to RP-1 induced greater loss of mitochondrial membrane potential and increased plasma membrane permeability than with the control strains. Therefore, Bcr1 and Ssd1 govern antimicrobial peptide susceptibility and likely function in the same pathway. Furthermore, BCR1 mRNA expression was downregulated in the ssd1Δ/Δ mutant, and the forced expression of BCR1 in the ssd1Δ/Δ mutant partially restored antimicrobial peptide resistance. These results suggest that Bcr1 functions downstream of Ssd1. Interestingly, overexpression of 11 known Bcr1 target genes in the bcr1Δ/Δ mutant failed to restore antimicrobial peptide resistance, suggesting that other Bcr1 target genes are likely responsible for antimicrobial peptide resistance. Collectively, these results demonstrate that Bcr1 functions downstream of Ssd1 to govern antimicrobial peptide resistance by maintaining mitochondrial energetics and reducing membrane permeabilization. PMID:23314964

  10. A novel class of antimicrobial peptides from the scorpion Heterometrus spinifer.

    PubMed

    Nie, Yao; Zeng, Xian-Chun; Yang, Ye; Luo, Feng; Luo, Xuesong; Wu, Shifen; Zhang, Lei; Zhou, Jianping

    2012-12-01

    The venom peptides from the scorpion Heterometrus spinifer have been poorly characterized so far. Here, we identified a novel class of antimicrobial peptides from the venom gland of H. spinifer, which were referred to as HsAp, HsAp2, HsAp3 and HsAp4, respectively. Each of the four peptides consists of 29 amino acid residues, and is cationic and weakly amphipathic. They display no significant homology to any other known peptides, and thus represent a new family of venom peptides from scorpions. Antimicrobial assay showed that HsAp is able to inhibit the growth of both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria with the MIC values of 11.8-51.2 μM. HsAp is also able to inhibit the growth of the tested fungus. Genomic analysis indicated that the genes of all the four peptides are intronless. Our studies expand the families of antimicrobial peptides from scorpions.

  11. Construction and expression of an antimicrobial peptide scolopin 1 from the centipede venoms of Scolopendra subspinipes mutilans in Escherichia coli using SUMO fusion partner.

    PubMed

    Hou, Huanhuan; Yan, Weili; Du, Kexing; Ye, Yangjing; Cao, Qianqian; Ren, Wenhua

    2013-12-01

    Antimicrobial peptide scolopin 1 (AMP-scolopin 1) is a small cationic peptide identified from centipede venoms of Scolopendra subspinipes mutilans. It has broad-spectrum activities against bacteria, fungi, and tumor cells, which may possibly be used as an antimicrobial agent. We first report here the application of small ubiquitin-related modifier (SUMO) fusion technology to the expression and purification of cationic antimicrobial peptide AMP-scolopin 1. The fusion protein expressed in a soluble form was purified to a purity of 95% by Ni-IDA chromatography. After the SUMO-scolopin 1 fusion protein was cleaved by the SUMO protease at 30°C for 1 h, the cleaved sample was reapplied to a Ni-IDA. The recombinant scolopin1 had similar antimicrobial properties to the synthetic scolopin 1. Thus, we successfully established a system for purifying peptide of centipede, which could be used for further research.

  12. Host Antimicrobial Peptides in Bacterial Homeostasis and Pathogenesis of Disease

    PubMed Central

    Heimlich, Derek R.; Harrison, Alistair; Mason, Kevin M.

    2014-01-01

    Innate immune responses function as a first line of host defense against the development of bacterial infection, and in some cases to preserve the sterility of privileged sites in the human host. Bacteria that enter these sites must counter host responses for colonization. From the host’s perspective, the innate immune system works expeditiously to minimize the bacterial threat before colonization and subsequent dysbiosis. The multifactorial nature of disease further challenges predictions of how each independent variable influences bacterial pathogenesis. From bacterial colonization to infection and through disease, the microenvironments of the host are in constant flux as bacterial and host factors contribute to changes at the host-pathogen interface, with the host attempting to eradicate bacteria and the bacteria fighting to maintain residency. A key component of this innate host response towards bacterial infection is the production of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs). As an early component of the host response, AMPs modulate bacterial load and prevent establishment of infection. Under quiescent conditions, some AMPs are constitutively expressed by the epithelium. Bacterial infection can subsequently induce production of other AMPs in an effort to maintain sterility, or to restrict colonization. As demonstrated in various studies, the absence of a single AMP can influence pathogenesis, highlighting the importance of AMP concentration in maintaining homeostasis. Yet, AMPs can increase bacterial virulence through the co-opting of the peptides or alteration of bacterial virulence gene expression. Further, bacterial factors used to subvert AMPs can modify host microenvironments and alter colonization of the residential flora that principally maintain homeostasis. Thus, the dynamic interplay between host defense peptides and bacterial factors produced to quell peptide activity play a critical role in the progression and outcome of disease. PMID:26029470

  13. Host Antimicrobial Peptides in Bacterial Homeostasis and Pathogenesis of Disease.

    PubMed

    Heimlich, Derek R; Harrison, Alistair; Mason, Kevin M

    2014-12-01

    Innate immune responses function as a first line of host defense against the development of bacterial infection, and in some cases to preserve the sterility of privileged sites in the human host. Bacteria that enter these sites must counter host responses for colonization. From the host's perspective, the innate immune system works expeditiously to minimize the bacterial threat before colonization and subsequent dysbiosis. The multifactorial nature of disease further challenges predictions of how each independent variable influences bacterial pathogenesis. From bacterial colonization to infection and through disease, the microenvironments of the host are in constant flux as bacterial and host factors contribute to changes at the host-pathogen interface, with the host attempting to eradicate bacteria and the bacteria fighting to maintain residency. A key component of this innate host response towards bacterial infection is the production of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs). As an early component of the host response, AMPs modulate bacterial load and prevent establishment of infection. Under quiescent conditions, some AMPs are constitutively expressed by the epithelium. Bacterial infection can subsequently induce production of other AMPs in an effort to maintain sterility, or to restrict colonization. As demonstrated in various studies, the absence of a single AMP can influence pathogenesis, highlighting the importance of AMP concentration in maintaining homeostasis. Yet, AMPs can increase bacterial virulence through the co-opting of the peptides or alteration of bacterial virulence gene expression. Further, bacterial factors used to subvert AMPs can modify host microenvironments and alter colonization of the residential flora that principally maintain homeostasis. Thus, the dynamic interplay between host defense peptides and bacterial factors produced to quell peptide activity play a critical role in the progression and outcome of disease.

  14. Engineered killer mimotopes: new synthetic peptides for antimicrobial therapy.

    PubMed

    Magliani, W; Conti, S; Salati, A; Arseni, S; Ravanetti, L; Frazzi, R; Polonelli, L

    2004-07-01

    This review deals with a novel approach to produce synthetic antibiotic peptides (killer mimotopes), similar to those described for the conversion of epitopes into peptide mimotopes, allowing their use as surrogate vaccines. Synthetic peptides pertaining to the complementary determining regions (CDRs) of a recombinant antiidiotypic antibody (PaKTscFv), which mimic the wide spectrum of microbicidal activity of a killer toxin produced by the yeast Pichia anomala (PaKT), have proven to act as structural or functional mimotopes of PaKT. This activity appeared to be mediated by interaction with specific cell wall killer toxin receptors (KTRs), mainly constituted by beta glucans. Killer mimotopes have shown in vitro an impressive microbicidal activity against Candida albicans. They were adopted as a model of PaKT- and PaKTscFv-susceptible microorganisms. Optimization through alanine scanning led to the generation of an engineered decapeptide (KP) of a CDR-L1 pertaining antibody fragment with an enhanced in vitro microbicidal activity. It had a potent therapeutic effect against experimental vaginal and systemic candidiasis in normal and immunodeficient mice caused by flucanozole susceptible and resistant yeast isolates. KP exerted a microbicidal activity in vitro against multidrug-resistant eukaryotic and prokaryotic pathogenic microorganisms, which was neutralized by interaction with laminarin (beta 1,3-glucan). To our knowledge, KP represents the prototype of an engineered peptide fragment derived from a microbicidal recombinant antiidiotypic antibody. It is capable of exerting antimicrobial activity in vitro and a therapeutic effect in vivo presumably acting through interaction with the beta glucan KTR component in the cell walls of pathogenic microorganisms.

  15. Design and characterization of short antimicrobial peptides using leucine zipper templates with selectivity towards microorganisms.

    PubMed

    Ahmad, Aqeel; Azmi, Sarfuddin; Srivastava, Saurabh; Kumar, Amit; Tripathi, Jitendra Kumar; Mishra, Nripendra N; Shukla, Praveen K; Ghosh, Jimut Kanti

    2014-11-01

    Design of antimicrobial peptides with selective activity towards microorganisms is an important step towards the development of new antimicrobial agents. Leucine zipper sequence has been implicated in cytotoxic activity of naturally occurring antimicrobial peptides; moreover, this motif has been utilized for the design of novel antimicrobial peptides with modulated cytotoxicity. To understand further the impact of substitution of amino acids at 'a' and/or 'd' position of a leucine zipper sequence of an antimicrobial peptides on its antimicrobial and cytotoxic properties four short peptides (14-residue) were designed on the basis of a leucine zipper sequence without or with replacement of leucine residues in its 'a' and 'd' positions with D-leucine or alanine or proline residue. The original short leucine zipper peptide (SLZP) and its D-leucine substituted analog, DLSA showed comparable activity against the tested Gram-positive and negative bacteria and the fungal strains. The alanine substituted analog (ASA) though showed appreciable activity against the tested bacteria, it showed to some extent lower activity against the tested fungi. However, the proline substituted analog (PSA) showed lower activity against the tested bacterial or fungal strains. Interestingly, DLSA, ASA and PSA showed significantly lower cytotoxicity than SLZP against both human red blood cells (hRBCs) and murine 3T3 cells. Cytotoxic and bactericidal properties of these peptides matched with peptide-induced damage/permeabilization of mammalian cells and bacteria or their mimetic lipid vesicles suggesting cell membrane could be the target of these peptides. As evidenced by tryptophan fluorescence and acrylamide quenching studies the peptides showed similarities either in interaction or in their localization within the bacterial membrane mimetic negatively charged lipid vesicles. Only SLZP showed localization inside the mammalian membrane mimetic zwitterionic lipid vesicles. The results show

  16. Recent advances in the research and development of marine antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    El-Gamal, Mohammed I; Abdel-Maksoud, Mohammed S; Oh, Chang-Hyun

    2013-08-01

    Antimicrobial peptides are a group of natural or semi-synthetic molecules possessing antimicrobial activities against bacteria, fungi, viruses, parasites, etc. They are considered as promising candidates for treatment of microbial infections and suppression of microbial resistance. The increasing emergence of bacterial resistance has required development of new efficient antibiotics that can be added to the antibacterial armamentarium. The marine world provides a rich source of antimicrobial peptides. That world has not been highly explored yet, and much more effort is required in order to discover new efficient antimicrobial peptides. In the present article, we have reviewed the recent progress in the field of marine antimicrobial peptides from 2009 until the mid of 2012.

  17. Improvement of in vivo antimicrobial activity of HBcARD peptides by D-arginine replacement.

    PubMed

    Chen, Heng-Li; Su, Pei-Yi; Shih, Chiaho

    2016-11-01

    We previously identified a novel antimicrobial peptide with a broad spectrum bactericidal activity from human hepatitis B virus (HBV) core protein (HBc) arginine-rich domain (ARD). We compared the antimicrobial activities of HBcARD peptides from different hepadnaviruses which share similar amino acid sequences. In general, mammalian HBcARD peptides exhibited stronger antimicrobial activity than avian peptides. Using the strategy of D-amino acid substitutions, we improved the antimicrobial efficacy of human HBcARD peptide. This D-HBcARD peptide was much more resistant than L-HBcARD peptide to proteolytic degradation in vitro. Moreover, this D-HBcARD peptide maintained similar minimal bactericidal concentrations (MBC) against tested bacteria, and showed very low hemolytic activity. In the Staphylococcus aureus-infected mouse model, this D-HBcARD peptide was more protective than the L-HBcARD peptide. Repeated treatments with either L- or D-HBcARD peptides induced no significant immunogenicity. New derivatives of HBcARD peptides could serve as alternatives to the conventional antibiotics in clinical medicine in the future.

  18. Membrane-active peptides from marine organisms--antimicrobials, cell-penetrating peptides and peptide toxins: applications and prospects.

    PubMed

    Ponnappan, Nisha; Budagavi, Deepthi Poornima; Yadav, Bhoopesh Kumar; Chugh, Archana

    2015-03-01

    Marine organisms are known to be a rich and unique source of bioactive compounds as they are exposed to extreme conditions in the oceans. The present study is an attempt to briefly describe some of the important membrane-active peptides (MAPs) such as antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), cell-penetrating peptides (CPPs) and peptide toxins from marine organisms. Since both AMPs and CPPs play a role in membrane perturbation and exhibit interchangeable role, they can speculatively fall under the broad umbrella of MAPs. The study focuses on the structural and functional characteristics of different classes of marine MAPs. Further, AMPs are considered as a potential remedy to antibiotic resistance acquired by several pathogens. Peptides from marine organisms show novel post-translational modifications such as cysteine knots, halogenation and histidino-alanine bridge that enable these peptides to withstand harsh marine environmental conditions. These unusual modifications of AMPs from marine organisms are expected to increase their half-life in living systems, contributing to their increased bioavailability and stability when administered as drug in in vivo systems. Apart from AMPs, marine toxins with membrane-perturbing properties could be essentially investigated for their cytotoxic effect on various pathogens and their cell-penetrating activity across various mammalian cells. The current review will help in identifying the MAPs from marine organisms with crucial post-translational modifications that can be used as template for designing novel therapeutic agents and drug-delivery vehicles for treatment of human diseases.

  19. Antimicrobial peptides: modes of mechanism, modulation of defense responses.

    PubMed

    Rahnamaeian, Mohammad

    2011-09-01

    Complicated schemes of classical breeding and their drawbacks, environmental risks imposed by agrochemicals, decrease of arable land, and coincident escalating damages of pests and pathogens have accentuated the necessity for highly efficient measures to improve crop protection. During co-evolution of host-microbe interactions, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have exhibited a brilliant history in protecting host organisms against devastation by invading pathogens. Since the 1980s, a plethora of AMPs has been isolated from and characterized in different organisms. Nevertheless the AMPs expressed in plants render them more resistant to diverse pathogens, a more orchestrated approach based on knowledge of their mechanisms of action and cellular targets, structural toxic principle, and possible impact on immune system of corresponding transgenic plants will considerably improve crop protection strategies against harmful plant diseases. This review outlines the current knowledge on different modes of action of AMPs and then argues the waves of AMPs’ ectopic expression on transgenic plants’ immune system.

  20. Cationic Antimicrobial Peptide Resistance Mechanisms of Streptococcal Pathogens

    PubMed Central

    LaRock, Christopher N.; Nizet, Victor

    2015-01-01

    Cationic antimicrobial peptides (CAMPs) are critical front line contributors to host defense against invasive bacterial infection. These immune factors have direct killing activity toward microbes, but many pathogens are able to resist their effects. Group A Streptococcus, group B Streptococcus and Streptococcus pneumoniae are among the most common pathogens of humans and display a variety of phenotypic adaptations to resist CAMPs. Common themes of CAMP resistance mechanisms among the pathogenic streptococci are repulsion, sequestration, export, and destruction. Each pathogen has a different array of CAMP-resistant mechanisms, with invasive disease potential reflecting the utilization of several mechanisms that may act in synergy. Here we discuss recent progress in identifying the sources of CAMP resistance in the medically important Streptococcus genus. Further study of these mechanisms can contribute to our understanding of streptococcal pathogenesis, and may provide new therapeutic targets for therapy and disease prevention. PMID:25701232

  1. Antimicrobial Peptides as a Strategy to Combat Fungal Biofilms.

    PubMed

    Delattin, Nicolas; Brucker, Katrijn De; Cremer, Kaat De; Cammue, Bruno P A; Thevissen, Karin

    2017-01-01

    Invasive fungal infections caused by opportunistic fungal pathogens are associated with high mortality rates, mainly due to the occurrence of genotypic and/or phenotypic resistance. One of the causes of phenotypic resistance is the preferred growth of various fungal pathogens as biofilms, which are tolerant or resistant to most classes of antifungal agents. Moreover, increasing evidence points to biofilm formation as a general prerequisite for the development of systemic infections. Therefore, new antibiofilm agents are urgently needed to reduce the incidence of biofilm-associated infections. Nowadays, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are considered as valuable alternatives for or complements to the classical antifungal agents to combat fungal infections. Many review reports describe activity of AMPs against free-living planktonic fungal pathogens. In contrast, this review summarizes the antibiofilm properties of natural or synthetic AMPs against fungal biofilms and their potential to enhance the antibiofilm activity of existing antifungal agents.

  2. Membrane selectivity and disordering mechanism of antimicrobial peptide protegrin-1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ishitsuka, Yuji

    Protegrin-1 (PG-1) is a beta-sheet antimicrobial peptide (AMP), a class of peptides innate to various organisms and functions as a defense agent against harmful microorganisms by means of membrane disordering. Characteristic chemical and structural properties of AMPs allow selective interaction against invaders' cell membranes. Despite their enormous biomedical potential, progress towards developing them into therapeutic agents has been hampered by a lack of insight into their mechanism of action. AMP insertion assays using Langmuir monolayers reveal that both electrostatic properties of the lipid head group as well as the packing density of the lipid tail group play important roles in determining the membrane selectivity of AMPs. These results help elucidate how the AMP selectively targets the cell membrane of microorganisms over the cell membrane of the host. In addition, these results also explain the higher hemolytic ability of PG-1 against human red blood cells (RBCs) compared to the hemolytic ability of PG-1 against sheep and pig RBCs. Synchrotron X-ray reflectivity shows that PG-1 penetrates into the lipid layer. Grazing incidence X-ray diffraction and fluorescence microscopy indicate that the insertion of PG-1 disorders tail group packing. Membrane selectivity and insertion location information of AMPs with different primary sequence and secondary structure have been obtained by using a truncated version of PG-1: PC-17, and an alpha-helical AMP, LL-37, respectively. The similarity of the membrane disordering process across these various peptides motivated us to test the membrane disordering effect of molecules designed to mimic these peptides. Peptide-mimics based on meta-phenylene ethynylenes demonstrate similar membrane disordering effects, showing that the potency of AMPs is derived from their overall chemical and structural properties, rather than exact peptide sequence. Atomic force microscopy (AFM) was used to directly image first, the PG-1

  3. NMR Structural Studies of Antimicrobial Peptides: LPcin Analogs

    PubMed Central

    Jeong, Ji-Ho; Kim, Ji-Sun; Choi, Sung-Sub; Kim, Yongae

    2016-01-01

    Lactophoricin (LPcin), a component of proteose peptone (113–135) isolated from bovine milk, is a cationic amphipathic antimicrobial peptide consisting of 23 amino acids. We designed a series of N- or C-terminal truncated variants, mutated analogs, and truncated mutated analogs using peptide-engineering techniques. Then, we selected three LPcin analogs of LPcin-C8 (LPcin-YK1), LPcin-T2WT6W (LPcin-YK2), and LPcin-T2WT6W-C8 (LPcin-YK3), which may have better antimicrobial activities than LPcin, and successfully expressed them in E. coli with high yield. We elucidated the 3D structures and topologies of the three LPcin analogs in membrane environments by conducting NMR structural studies. We investigated the purity of the LPcin analogs and the α-helical secondary structures by performing 1H-15N 2D HSQC and HMQC-NOESY liquid-state NMR spectroscopy using protein-containing micelle samples. We measured the 3D structures and tilt angles in membranes by conducting 15N 1D and 2D 1H-15N SAMMY type solid-state NMR spectroscopy with an 800 MHz in-house-built 1H-15N double-resonance solid-state NMR probe with a strip-shield coil, using protein-containing large bicelle samples aligned and confirmed by molecular-dynamics simulations. The three LPcin analogs were found to be curved α-helical structures, with tilt angles of 55–75° for normal membrane bilayers, and their enhanced activities may be correlated with these topologies. PMID:26789765

  4. Antimicrobial peptides for the control of biofilm formation.

    PubMed

    Moreno, Mercedes González; Lombardi, Lisa; Di Luca, Mariagrazia

    2017-01-05

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are an abundant and varied group of molecules recognized as the most ancient components of the innate immune system. They are found in a wide group of organisms including bacteria, plants and animals as a defense mechanism against different kinds of infectious pathogens. Over the past two decades, a fast-growing number of AMPs have been identified/designed and their wide-spectrum antimicrobial activity has been deeply investigated. In recent years, there has been an increasing interest in the use of AMPs as alternative anti-biofilm molecules for the control of biofilm-related infections. Biofilms are sessile communities of microbial cells embedded in a self-produced matrix and characterized by a low metabolic activity. Due to their peculiar physiological properties, bacteria/fungi in biofilms result more resistant to conventional antibiotic therapies compared with their planktonic counterparts. AMPs may be a promising strategy to combat biofilm-related infections, as many of them target the microbial membrane, thus being potentially effective also on metabolically inactive cells. Investigations conducted so far evidenced that these peptides may be active in either eradicating established biofilms or preventing their formation, depending on the specific molecule. Here we present a detailed review of the literature describing the latest results of both in vitro and in vivo experiments aimed at evaluating AMP potential usage in biofilm control. In addition, we provide the reader with an overview on AMP local delivery systems, and we discuss their potential application in the coating of medical indwelling devices.

  5. GraXSR Proteins Interact with the VraFG ABC Transporter To Form a Five-Component System Required for Cationic Antimicrobial Peptide Sensing and Resistance in Staphylococcus aureus

    PubMed Central

    Falord, Mélanie; Karimova, Gouzel; Hiron, Aurélia

    2012-01-01

    The GraSR two-component system (TCS) controls cationic antimicrobial peptide (CAMP) resistance in Staphylococcus aureus through the synthesis of enzymes that increase bacterial cell surface positive charges, by d-alanylation of teichoic acids and lysylination of phosphatidylglycerol, leading to electrostatic repulsion of CAMPs. The GraS histidine kinase belongs to the “intramembrane-sensing kinases” subfamily, with a structure featuring a short amino-terminal sensing domain, and two transmembrane helices separated only by a short loop, thought to be buried in the cytoplasmic membrane. The GraSR TCS is in fact a multicomponent system, requiring at least one accessory protein, GraX, in order to function, which, as we show here, acts by signaling through the GraS kinase. The graXRS genes are located immediately upstream from genes encoding an ABC transporter, vraFG, whose expression is controlled by GraSR. We demonstrated that the VraFG transporter does not act as a detoxification module, as it cannot confer resistance when produced on its own, but instead plays an essential role by sensing the presence of CAMPs and signaling through GraS to activate GraR-dependent transcription. A bacterial two-hybrid approach, designed to identify interactions between the GraXSR and VraFG proteins, was carried out in order to understand how they act in detecting and signaling the presence of CAMPs. We identified many interactions between these protein pairs, notably between the GraS kinase and both GraX and the VraG permease, indicating the existence of an original five-component system involved in CAMP sensing and signal transduction to promote S. aureus resistance. PMID:22123691

  6. Beyond NMR Spectra of Antimicrobial Peptides: Dynamical Images at Atomic Resolution and Functional Insights

    PubMed Central

    Ramamoorthy, Ayyalusamy

    2009-01-01

    There is a considerable current interest in understanding the function of antimicrobial peptides for the development of potent novel antibiotic compounds with a very high selectivity. Since their interaction with the cell membrane is the major driving force for their function, solid-state NMR spectroscopy is the unique method of choice to study these insoluble, noncrystalline, membrane-peptide complexes. Here I discuss solid-state NMR studies of antimicrobial peptides that have reported high-resolution structure, dynamics, orientation, and oligomeric states of antimicrobial peptides in a membrane environment, and also address important questions about the mechanism of action at atomic-level resolution. Increasing number of solid-state NMR applications to antimicrobial peptides are expected in the near future, as these compounds are promising candidates to overcome ever-increasing antibiotic resistance problem and are well-suited for the development and applications of solid-state NMR techniques. PMID:19386477

  7. Next generation of antimicrobial peptides as molecular targeted medicines.

    PubMed

    Aoki, Wataru; Kuroda, Kouichi; Ueda, Mitsuyoshi

    2012-10-01

    Antibiotics have significantly improved our living environments. However, overuse of antibiotics has led to the emergence of multi-drug resistant microorganisms, and the subsequent constant demand for the exploration of novel antibiotics. To this end, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have attracted much attention as a novel class of antibiotics. AMPs have strong antimicrobial activity against a wide-range of species, including gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria, fungi, and viruses. In addition, they are also effective against pathogenic organisms that are resistant to conventional drugs. Despite their great potential, the hemolytic activity and a highly broad spectrum of activity of AMPs dictate the need for amendments to develop safe pharmaceuticals. The human body contains commensal microflora as an integral part of complex mucosal surfaces that offers protection against pathogenic organisms. Administration of antibiotics with broad spectra of activity disrupts the indigenous microflora and increases the risks of diarrhea and other fatal infections. Therefore, it is difficult, but vital, to develop treatments capable of rapidly eliminating pathogenic organisms while maintaining the commensal microbiota. As such, novel pharmaceuticals, safe designer AMPs have been heavily researched. In this article, we review recent attempts to spatially and temporally regulate AMPs to enhance the quality-of-life of patients. Copyright © 2012 The Society for Biotechnology, Japan. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Recombinant expression of antimicrobial peptides using a novel self-cleaving aggregation tag in Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Luan, Chao; Xie, Yong Gang; Pu, Yu Tian; Zhang, Hai Wen; Han, Fei Fei; Feng, Jie; Wang, Yi Zhen

    2014-03-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are part of the innate immune system of complex multicellular organisms. Despite the fact that AMPs show great potential as a novel class of antibiotics, the lack of a cost-effective means for their mass production limits both basic research and clinical use. In this work, we describe a novel expression system for the production of antimicrobial peptides in Escherichia coli by combining ΔI-CM mini-intein with the self-assembling amphipathic peptide 18A to drive the formation of active aggregates. Two AMPs, human β-defensin 2 and LL-37, were fused to the self-cleaving tag and expressed as active protein aggregates. The active aggregates were recovered by centrifugation and the intact antimicrobial peptides were released into solution by an intein-mediated cleavage reaction in cleaving buffer (phosphate-buffered saline supplemented with 40 mmol/L Bis-Tris, 2 mmol/L EDTA, pH 6.2). The peptides were further purified by cation-exchange chromatography. Peptides yields of 0.82 ± 0.24 and 0.59 ± 0.11 mg/L were achieved for human β-defensin 2 and LL-37, respectively, with demonstrated antimicrobial activity. Using our expression system, intact antimicrobial peptides were recovered by simple centrifugation from active protein aggregates after the intein-mediated cleavage reaction. Thus, we provide an economical and efficient way to produce intact antimicrobial peptides in E. coli.

  9. Antimicrobial activity of synthetic cationic peptides and lipopeptides derived from human lactoferricin against Pseudomonas aeruginosa planktonic cultures and biofilms.

    PubMed

    Sánchez-Gómez, Susana; Ferrer-Espada, Raquel; Stewart, Philip S; Pitts, Betsey; Lohner, Karl; Martínez de Tejada, Guillermo

    2015-07-07

    Infections by Pseudomonas aeruginosa constitute a serious health threat because this pathogen -particularly when it forms biofilms - can acquire resistance to the majority of conventional antibiotics. This study evaluated the antimicrobial activity of synthetic peptides based on LF11, an 11-mer peptide derived from human lactoferricin against P. aeruginosa planktonic and biofilm-forming cells. We included in this analysis selected N-acylated derivatives of the peptides to analyze the effect of acylation in antimicrobial activity. To assess the efficacy of compounds against planktonic bacteria, microdilution assays to determine the minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC), minimum bactericidal concentration (MBC) and time-kill studies were conducted. The anti-biofilm activity of the agents was assessed on biofilms grown under static (on microplates) and dynamic (in a CDC-reactor) flow regimes. The antimicrobial activity of lipopeptides differed from that of non-acylated peptides in their killing mechanisms on planktonic and biofilm-forming cells. Thus, acylation enhanced the bactericidal activity of the parental peptides and resulted in lipopeptides that were uniformly bactericidal at their MIC. In contrast, acylation of the most potent anti-biofilm peptides resulted in compounds with lower anti-biofilm activity. Both peptides and lipopeptides displayed very rapid killing kinetics and all of them required less than 21 min to reduce 1,000 times the viability of planktonic cells when tested at 2 times their MBC. The peptides, LF11-215 (FWRIRIRR) and LF11-227 (FWRRFWRR), displayed the most potent anti-biofilm activity causing a 10,000 fold reduction in cell viability after 1 h of treatment at 10 times their MIC. At that concentration, these two compounds exhibited low citotoxicity on human cells. In addition to its bactericidal activity, LF11-227 removed more that 50 % of the biofilm mass in independent assays. Peptide LF11-215 and two of the shortest and least

  10. Molecular Design, Structures, and Activity of Antimicrobial Peptide-Mimetic Polymers

    PubMed Central

    Takahashi, Haruko; Palermo, Edmund F.; Yasuhara, Kazuma; Caputo, Gregory A.

    2014-01-01

    There is an urgent need for new antibiotics which are effective against drug-resistant bacteria without contributing to resistance development. We have designed and developed antimicrobial copolymers with cationic amphiphilic structures based on the mimicry of naturally occurring antimicrobial peptides. These copolymers exhibit potent antimicrobial activity against a broad spectrum of bacteria including methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus with no adverse hemolytic activity. Notably, these polymers also did not result in any measurable resistance development in E. coli. The peptide-mimetic design principle offers significant flexibility and diversity in the creation of new antimicrobial materials and their potential biomedical applications. PMID:23832766

  11. Spontaneous formation of structurally diverse membrane channel architectures from a single antimicrobial peptide

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yukun; Chen, Charles H.; Hu, Dan; Ulmschneider, Martin B.; Ulmschneider, Jakob P.

    2016-01-01

    Many antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) selectively target and form pores in microbial membranes. However, the mechanisms of membrane targeting, pore formation and function remain elusive. Here we report an experimentally guided unbiased simulation methodology that yields the mechanism of spontaneous pore assembly for the AMP maculatin at atomic resolution. Rather than a single pore, maculatin forms an ensemble of structurally diverse temporarily functional low-oligomeric pores, which mimic integral membrane protein channels in structure. These pores continuously form and dissociate in the membrane. Membrane permeabilization is dominated by hexa-, hepta- and octamers, which conduct water, ions and small dyes. Pores form by consecutive addition of individual helices to a transmembrane helix or helix bundle, in contrast to current poration models. The diversity of the pore architectures—formed by a single sequence—may be a key feature in preventing bacterial resistance and could explain why sequence–function relationships in AMPs remain elusive. PMID:27874004

  12. Spontaneous formation of structurally diverse membrane channel architectures from a single antimicrobial peptide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Yukun; Chen, Charles H.; Hu, Dan; Ulmschneider, Martin B.; Ulmschneider, Jakob P.

    2016-11-01

    Many antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) selectively target and form pores in microbial membranes. However, the mechanisms of membrane targeting, pore formation and function remain elusive. Here we report an experimentally guided unbiased simulation methodology that yields the mechanism of spontaneous pore assembly for the AMP maculatin at atomic resolution. Rather than a single pore, maculatin forms an ensemble of structurally diverse temporarily functional low-oligomeric pores, which mimic integral membrane protein channels in structure. These pores continuously form and dissociate in the membrane. Membrane permeabilization is dominated by hexa-, hepta- and octamers, which conduct water, ions and small dyes. Pores form by consecutive addition of individual helices to a transmembrane helix or helix bundle, in contrast to current poration models. The diversity of the pore architectures--formed by a single sequence--may be a key feature in preventing bacterial resistance and could explain why sequence-function relationships in AMPs remain elusive.

  13. The Spider Venom Peptide Lycosin-II Has Potent Antimicrobial Activity against Clinically Isolated Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yongjun; Wang, Ling; Yang, Huali; Xiao, Haoliang; Farooq, Athar; Liu, Zhonghua; Hu, Min; Shi, Xiaoliu

    2016-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides have been accepted as excellent candidates for developing novel antibiotics against drug-resistant bacteria. Recent studies indicate that spider venoms are the source for the identification of novel antimicrobial peptides. In the present study, we isolated and characterized an antibacterial peptide named lycosin-II from the venom of the spider Lycosa singoriensis. It contains 21 amino acid residue lacking cysteine residues and forms a typical linear amphipathic and cationic α-helical conformation. Lycosin-II displays potent bacteriostatic effect on the tested drug-resistant bacterial strains isolated from hospital patients, including multidrug-resistant A. baumannii, which has presented a huge challenge for the infection therapy. The inhibitory ability of lycosin-II might derive from its binding to cell membrane, because Mg2+ could compete with the binding sites to reduce the bacteriostatic potency of lycosin-II. Our data suggest that lycosin-II might be a lead in the development of novel antibiotics for curing drug-resistant bacterial infections. PMID:27128941

  14. Activity of Genital Tract Secretions and Synthetic Antimicrobial Peptides against Group B Streptococcus.

    PubMed

    Agarwal, Nidhi; Buckley, Niall; Nakra, Natasha; Gialanella, Philip; Yuan, Weirong; Ghartey, Jeny P

    2015-12-01

    Genital tract secretions inhibit Escherichia coli (E. coli) through antimicrobial peptides (AMP) secreted by the host and vaginal microbiota. However, there are limited data against group B Streptococcus (GBS). Group B Streptococcus were incubated with cervico-vaginal lavage (CVL) samples from healthy non-pregnant women (n = 12) or synthetic AMP and monitored for bacterial growth using a turbidimetric approach. E. coli inhibitory activity was determined by a colony-forming unit assay. None of the CVL samples inhibited GBS. The human neutrophil peptide-1 and human defensin 5 inhibited GBS growth by ≥80% at concentrations ≥20 μg/mL and ≥50 μg/mL, respectively, while human beta-defensin 2 and LL-37 did not inhibit at highest concentration tested (100 μg/mL). In contrast, all AMP inhibited E. coli. Antimicrobial peptides may protect against E. coli colonization but have more limited activity against GBS. Future studies will focus on augmenting host defense with specific AMP to prevent genitourinary infection with these pathogenic organisms. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Defensive remodeling: How bacterial surface properties and biofilm formation promote resistance to antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Nuri, Reut; Shprung, Tal; Shai, Yechiel

    2015-11-01

    Multidrug resistance bacteria are a major concern worldwide. These pathogens cannot be treated with conventional antibiotics and thus alternative therapeutic agents are needed. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are considered to be good candidates for this purpose. Most AMPs are short and positively charged amphipathic peptides, which are found in all known forms of life. AMPs are known to kill bacteria by binding to the negatively charged bacterial surface, and in most cases cause membrane disruption. Resistance toward AMPs can be developed, by modification of bacterial surface molecules, secretion of protective material and up-regulation or elimination of specific proteins. Because of the general mechanisms of attachment and action of AMPs, bacterial resistance to AMPs often involves biophysical and biochemical changes such as surface rigidity, cell wall thickness, surface charge, as well as membrane and cell wall modification. Here we focus on the biophysical, surface and surrounding changes that bacteria undergo in acquiring resistance to AMPs. In addition we discuss the question of whether bacterial resistance to administered AMPs might compromise our innate immunity to endogenous AMPs. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Bacterial Resistance to Antimicrobial Peptides.

  16. Antimicrobial Dendrimeric Peptides: Structure, Activity and New Therapeutic Applications

    PubMed Central

    Scorciapino, Mariano A.; Serra, Ilaria; Manzo, Giorgia; Rinaldi, Andrea C.

    2017-01-01

    Microbial resistance to conventional antibiotics is one of the most outstanding medical and scientific challenges of our times. Despite the recognised need for new anti-infective agents, however, very few new drugs have been brought to the market and to the clinic in the last three decades. This review highlights the properties of a new class of antibiotics, namely dendrimeric peptides. These intriguing novel compounds, generally made of multiple peptidic sequences linked to an inner branched core, display an array of antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal activities, usually coupled to low haemolytic activity. In addition, several peptides synthesized in oligobranched form proved to be promising tools for the selective treatment of cancer cells. PMID:28273806

  17. Antimicrobial activity and interactions of cationic peptides derived from Galleria mellonella cecropin D-like peptide with model membranes.

    PubMed

    Oñate-Garzón, José; Manrique-Moreno, Marcela; Trier, Steven; Leidy, Chad; Torres, Rodrigo; Patiño, Edwin

    2017-03-01

    Antimicrobial peptides are effector molecules of the innate immune system against invading pathogens. The cationic charge in their structures has a strong correlation with antimicrobial activity, being responsible for the initial electrostatic interaction between peptides and the anionic microbial surface. This paper contains evidence that charge modification in the neutral peptide Gm cecropin D-like (WT) improved the antimicrobial activity of the modified peptides. Two cationic peptides derived from WT sequence named as ΔM1 and ΔM2, with net charge of +5 and +9, respectively, showed at least an eightfold increase in their antimicrobial activity in comparison to WT. The mechanism of action of these peptides was investigated using small unilamellar vesicles (SUVs) as model membranes. To study permeabilization effects of the peptides on cell membranes, entrapped calcein liposomes were used and the results showed that all peptides induced calcein release from 1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoglycerol (POPG) SUVs, whereas in 1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (POPC), POPC/POPG and 1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoethanolamine (POPE)/POPG SUVs, only ΔM1 and ΔM2 induced a notable permeabilization. In addition, interactions of these peptides with phospholipids at the level of the glycerol backbone and hydrophobic domain were studied through observed changes in generalized polarization and fluorescence anisotropy using probes such as Laurdan and DPH, respectively. The results suggest that peptides slightly ordered the bilayer structure at the level of glycerol backbone and on the hydrophobic core in 1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoglycerol (DMPG) SUVs, whereas in 1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DMPC)/DMPG SUVs, only ΔM1 and ΔM2 peptides increased the order of bilayers. Thus, peptides would be inducing clustering of phospholipids creating phospholipid domains with a higher phase transition temperature.

  18. Focal Targeting of the Bacterial Envelope by Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Rashid, Rafi; Veleba, Mark; Kline, Kimberly A.

    2016-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are utilized by both eukaryotic and prokaryotic organisms. AMPs such as the human beta defensins, human neutrophil peptides, human cathelicidin, and many bacterial bacteriocins are cationic and capable of binding to anionic regions of the bacterial surface. Cationic AMPs (CAMPs) target anionic lipids [e.g., phosphatidylglycerol (PG) and cardiolipins (CL)] in the cell membrane and anionic components [e.g., lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and lipoteichoic acid (LTA)] of the cell envelope. Bacteria have evolved mechanisms to modify these same targets in order to resist CAMP killing, e.g., lysinylation of PG to yield cationic lysyl-PG and alanylation of LTA. Since CAMPs offer a promising therapeutic alternative to conventional antibiotics, which are becoming less effective due to rapidly emerging antibiotic resistance, there is a strong need to improve our understanding about the AMP mechanism of action. Recent literature suggests that AMPs often interact with the bacterial cell envelope at discrete foci. Here we review recent AMP literature, with an emphasis on focal interactions with bacteria, including (1) CAMP disruption mechanisms, (2) delocalization of membrane proteins and lipids by CAMPs, and (3) CAMP sensing systems and resistance mechanisms. We conclude with new approaches for studying the bacterial membrane, e.g., lipidomics, high resolution imaging, and non-detergent-based membrane domain extraction. PMID:27376064

  19. Antimicrobial peptides as new recognition molecules for screening challenging species

    PubMed Central

    Kulagina, Nadezhda V.; Shaffer, Kara M.; Ligler, Frances S.; Taitt, Chris R.

    2007-01-01

    The goal of this study was to evaluate binding of four targets of biodefense interest to immobilized antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) in biosensor assays. Polymyxins B and E, melittin, cecropins A, B, and P, parasin, bactenecin and magainin-1, as well as control antibodies, were used as capture molecules for detection of Cy3-labeled Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus (VEE), vaccinia virus, C. burnetti and B. melitensis. Although VEE, vaccinia virus and C. burnetti did not show any binding activity to their corresponding capture antibodies, B. melitensis bound to immobilized anti-Brucella monoclonal antibodies. The majority of the immobilized AMPs included in this study bound labeled VEE, vaccinia virus and C. burnetti in a concentration-dependent manner, and B. melitensis bound to polymyxin B, polymyxin E, and bactenecin. No binding was observed on immobilized magainin-1. In contrast to all bacterial targets tested to date, VEE and vaccinia virus demonstrated similar patterns of binding to all peptides. While the direct assay is generally replaced by a sandwich assay for analysis of real-world samples, direct binding experiments are commonly used to characterize specificity and sensitivity of binding molecules. In this case, they clearly demonstrate the capability of AMPs as recognition molecules for four biothreat agents. PMID:18231571

  20. Immune Signaling and Antimicrobial Peptide Expression in Lepidoptera

    PubMed Central

    Casanova-Torres, Ángel M.; Goodrich-Blair, Heidi

    2013-01-01

    Many lepidopteran insects are agricultural pests that affect stored grains, food and fiber crops. These insects have negative ecological and economic impacts since they lower crop yield, and pesticides are expensive and can have off-target effects on beneficial arthropods. A better understanding of lepidopteran immunity will aid in identifying new targets for the development of specific insect pest management compounds. A fundamental aspect of immunity, and therefore a logical target for control, is the induction of antimicrobial peptide (AMP) expression. These peptides insert into and disrupt microbial membranes, thereby promoting pathogen clearance and insect survival. Pathways leading to AMP expression have been extensively studied in the dipteran Drosophila melanogaster. However, Diptera are an important group of pollinators and pest management strategies that target their immune systems is not recommended. Recent advances have facilitated investigation of lepidopteran immunity, revealing both conserved and derived characteristics. Although the general pathways leading to AMP expression are conserved, specific components of these pathways, such as recognition proteins have diverged. In this review we highlight how such comparative immunology could aid in developing pest management strategies that are specific to agricultural insect pests. PMID:25861461

  1. Antimicrobial Peptide Resistance Mechanisms of Gram-Positive Bacteria.

    PubMed

    Nawrocki, Kathryn L; Crispell, Emily K; McBride, Shonna M

    2014-10-13

    Antimicrobial peptides, or AMPs, play a significant role in many environments as a tool to remove competing organisms. In response, many bacteria have evolved mechanisms to resist these peptides and prevent AMP-mediated killing. The development of AMP resistance mechanisms is driven by direct competition between bacterial species, as well as host and pathogen interactions. Akin to the number of different AMPs found in nature, resistance mechanisms that have evolved are just as varied and may confer broad-range resistance or specific resistance to AMPs. Specific mechanisms of AMP resistance prevent AMP-mediated killing against a single type of AMP, while broad resistance mechanisms often lead to a global change in the bacterial cell surface and protect the bacterium from a large group of AMPs that have similar characteristics. AMP resistance mechanisms can be found in many species of bacteria and can provide a competitive edge against other bacterial species or a host immune response. Gram-positive bacteria are one of the largest AMP producing groups, but characterization of Gram-positive AMP resistance mechanisms lags behind that of Gram-negative species. In this review we present a summary of the AMP resistance mechanisms that have been identified and characterized in Gram-positive bacteria. Understanding the mechanisms of AMP resistance in Gram-positive species can provide guidelines in developing and applying AMPs as therapeutics, and offer insight into the role of resistance in bacterial pathogenesis.

  2. Antimicrobial Peptide Resistance Mechanisms of Gram-Positive Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Nawrocki, Kathryn L.; Crispell, Emily K.; McBride, Shonna M.

    2014-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides, or AMPs, play a significant role in many environments as a tool to remove competing organisms. In response, many bacteria have evolved mechanisms to resist these peptides and prevent AMP-mediated killing. The development of AMP resistance mechanisms is driven by direct competition between bacterial species, as well as host and pathogen interactions. Akin to the number of different AMPs found in nature, resistance mechanisms that have evolved are just as varied and may confer broad-range resistance or specific resistance to AMPs. Specific mechanisms of AMP resistance prevent AMP-mediated killing against a single type of AMP, while broad resistance mechanisms often lead to a global change in the bacterial cell surface and protect the bacterium from a large group of AMPs that have similar characteristics. AMP resistance mechanisms can be found in many species of bacteria and can provide a competitive edge against other bacterial species or a host immune response. Gram-positive bacteria are one of the largest AMP producing groups, but characterization of Gram-positive AMP resistance mechanisms lags behind that of Gram-negative species. In this review we present a summary of the AMP resistance mechanisms that have been identified and characterized in Gram-positive bacteria. Understanding the mechanisms of AMP resistance in Gram-positive species can provide guidelines in developing and applying AMPs as therapeutics, and offer insight into the role of resistance in bacterial pathogenesis. PMID:25419466

  3. Membrane Active Antimicrobial Peptides: Translating Mechanistic Insights to Design

    PubMed Central

    Li, Jianguo; Koh, Jun-Jie; Liu, Shouping; Lakshminarayanan, Rajamani; Verma, Chandra S.; Beuerman, Roger W.

    2017-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are promising next generation antibiotics that hold great potential for combating bacterial resistance. AMPs can be both bacteriostatic and bactericidal, induce rapid killing and display a lower propensity to develop resistance than do conventional antibiotics. Despite significant progress in the past 30 years, no peptide antibiotic has reached the clinic yet. Poor understanding of the action mechanisms and lack of rational design principles have been the two major obstacles that have slowed progress. Technological developments are now enabling multidisciplinary approaches including molecular dynamics simulations combined with biophysics and microbiology toward providing valuable insights into the interactions of AMPs with membranes at atomic level. This has led to increasingly robust models of the mechanisms of action of AMPs and has begun to contribute meaningfully toward the discovery of new AMPs. This review discusses the detailed action mechanisms that have been put forward, with detailed atomistic insights into how the AMPs interact with bacterial membranes. The review further discusses how this knowledge is exploited toward developing design principles for novel AMPs. Finally, the current status, associated challenges, and future directions for the development of AMP therapeutics are discussed. PMID:28261050

  4. Membrane Active Antimicrobial Peptides: Translating Mechanistic Insights to Design.

    PubMed

    Li, Jianguo; Koh, Jun-Jie; Liu, Shouping; Lakshminarayanan, Rajamani; Verma, Chandra S; Beuerman, Roger W

    2017-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are promising next generation antibiotics that hold great potential for combating bacterial resistance. AMPs can be both bacteriostatic and bactericidal, induce rapid killing and display a lower propensity to develop resistance than do conventional antibiotics. Despite significant progress in the past 30 years, no peptide antibiotic has reached the clinic yet. Poor understanding of the action mechanisms and lack of rational design principles have been the two major obstacles that have slowed progress. Technological developments are now enabling multidisciplinary approaches including molecular dynamics simulations combined with biophysics and microbiology toward providing valuable insights into the interactions of AMPs with membranes at atomic level. This has led to increasingly robust models of the mechanisms of action of AMPs and has begun to contribute meaningfully toward the discovery of new AMPs. This review discusses the detailed action mechanisms that have been put forward, with detailed atomistic insights into how the AMPs interact with bacterial membranes. The review further discusses how this knowledge is exploited toward developing design principles for novel AMPs. Finally, the current status, associated challenges, and future directions for the development of AMP therapeutics are discussed.

  5. Design of antimicrobial peptides conjugated biodegradable citric acid derived hydrogels for wound healing.

    PubMed

    Xie, Zhiwei; Aphale, Nikhil V; Kadapure, Tejaswi D; Wadajkar, Aniket S; Orr, Sara; Gyawali, Dipendra; Qian, Guoying; Nguyen, Kytai T; Yang, Jian

    2015-12-01

    Wound healing is usually facilitated by the use of a wound dressing that can be easily applied to cover the wound bed, maintain moisture, and avoid bacterial infection. In order to meet all of these requirements, we developed an in situ forming biodegradable hydrogel (iFBH) system composed of a newly developed combination of biodegradable poly(ethylene glycol) maleate citrate (PEGMC) and poly(ethylene glycol) diacrylate (PEGDA). The in situ forming hydrogel systems are able to conform to the wound shape in order to cover the wound completely and prevent bacterial invasion. A 2(k) factorial analysis was performed to examine the effects of polymer composition on specific properties, including the curing time, Young's modulus, swelling ratio, and degradation rate. An optimized iFBH formulation was achieved from the systematic factorial analysis. Further, in vitro biocompatibility studies using adult human dermal fibroblasts (HDFs) confirmed that the hydrogels and degradation products are not cytotoxic. The iFBH wound dressing was conjugated and functionalized with antimicrobial peptides as well. Evaluation against bacteria both in vitro and in vivo in rats demonstrated that the peptide-incorporated iFBH wound dressing offered excellent bacteria inhibition and promoted wound healing. These studies indicated that our in situ forming antimicrobial biodegradable hydrogel system is a promising candidate for wound treatment.

  6. Peptidomics and genomics analysis of novel antimicrobial peptides from the frog, Rana nigrovittata.

    PubMed

    Ma, Yufang; Liu, Cunbao; Liu, Xiuhong; Wu, Jing; Yang, Hailong; Wang, Yipeng; Li, Jianxu; Yu, Haining; Lai, Ren

    2010-01-01

    Much attention has been paid on amphibian peptides for their wide-ranging pharmacological properties, clinical potential, and gene-encoded origin. More than 300 antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) from amphibians have been studied. Peptidomics and genomics analysis combined with functional test including microorganism killing, histamine-releasing, and mast cell degranulation was used to investigate antimicrobial peptide diversity. Thirty-four novel AMPs from skin secretions of Rana nigrovittata were identified in current work, and they belong to 9 families, including 6 novel families. Other three families are classified into rugosin, gaegurin, and temporin family of amphibian AMP, respectively. These AMPs share highly conserved preproregions including signal peptides and spacer acidic peptides, while greatly diversified on mature peptides structures. In this work, peptidomics combined with genomics analysis was confirmed to be an effective way to identify amphibian AMPs, especially novel families. Some AMPs reported here will provide leading molecules for designing novel antimicrobial agents.

  7. Liquid-liquid extraction of antimicrobial peptide P34 by aqueous two-phase and micellar systems.

    PubMed

    Sant'Anna, Voltaire; Folmer Correa, Ana Paula; de Souza da Motta, Amanda; Brandelli, Adriano

    2016-11-16

    Antimicrobial peptide P34 is a promising biopreservative for utilization in the food industry. In this work, aqueous biphasic systems (ABS) and aqueous biphasic micellar systems (ABMS) were studied as prestep for purification of peptide P34. The ABS was prepared with polyethylene glycol (PEG) and inorganic salts and the ABMS with Triton X-114 was chosen as the phase-forming surfactant. Results indicate that peptide P34 partitions preferentially to PEG-rich phase and extraction with ammonium sulfate [(NH4)2SO4], yielding a 75% recovery of the antimicrobial activity, specific activity of 1,530 antimicrobial units per mg of protein, and purification fold of 2.48. Protein partition coefficient and partition coefficient for the biological activity with (NH4)2SO4 system were 0.48 and 64, respectively. Addition of sodium chloride did not affect recovery, but decreased protein amount in the PEG-rich phase, indicating a higher partition of biomolecules. ABMS did not yield good recovery of antimicrobial activity. Purification fold using PEG-(NH4)2SO4 and 1.0 mol l(-1) sodium chloride was twice higher than that obtained by conventional protocol, indicating a successful utilization of ABS as a step for purification of peptide P34.

  8. Ribosomally synthesized peptides with antimicrobial properties: biosynthesis, structure, function, and applications.

    PubMed

    Papagianni, Maria

    2003-09-01

    Ribosomally synthesized peptides with antimicrobial properties (antimicrobial peptides-AMPs) are produced by eukaryotes and prokaryotes and represent crucial components of their defense systems against microorganisms. Although they differ in structure, they are nearly all cationic and very often amphiphilic, which reflects the fact that many of them attack their target cells by permeabilizing the cell membrane. They can be roughly categorized into those that have a high content of a certain amino acid, most often proline, those that contain intramolecular disulfide bridges, and those with an amphiphilic region in their molecule if they assume an alpha-helical structure. Most of the known ribosomally synthesized peptides with antimicrobial functions have been identified and studied during the last 20 years. As a result of these studies, new knowledge has been acquired into biology and biochemistry. It has become evident that these peptides may be developed into useful antimicrobial additives and drugs. The use of two-peptide antimicrobial peptides as replacement for clinical antibiotics is promising, though their applications in preservation of foods (safe and effective for use in meat, vegetables, and dairy products), in veterinary medicine, and in dentistry are more immediate. This review focuses on the current status of some of the main types of ribosomally synthesized AMPs produced by eucaryotes and procaryotes and discusses the novel antimicrobial functions, new developments, e.g. heterologous production of bacteriocins by lactic acid bacteria, or construction of multibacteriocinogenic strains, novel applications related to these peptides, and future research paradigms.

  9. Identification of multiple antimicrobial peptides from the skin of fine-spined frog, Hylarana spinulosa (Ranidae).

    PubMed

    Yang, Xiaolong; Hu, Yuhong; Xu, Shiqi; Hu, Yonghong; Meng, Hao; Guo, Chao; Liu, Yuliang; Liu, Jingze; Yu, Zhijun; Wang, Hui

    2013-12-01

    In this study, peptidomics and genomics analyses were used to study antimicrobial peptides from the skin of Hylarana spinulosa. Twenty-nine different antimicrobial peptide precursors were characterized from the skin of H. spinulosa, which produce 23 mature antimicrobial peptides belonging to 12 different families. To confirm the actual presence and characteristics of these antimicrobial peptides in the skin tissue extractions from H. spinulosa, we used two distinct methods, one was peptide purification method that combined gel filtration chromatography and reversed-phase high performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC), and the other was peptidomics approach based on liquid chromatography in conjunction with tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). In the peptidomics approach, incomplete tryptic digestion and gas-phase fractionation (GPF) analysis were used to increase peptidome coverage and reproducibility of peptide ion selection. Multiple species of microorganisms were chosen to test and analyze the antimicrobial activities and spectrum of these antimicrobial peptides. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  10. Antimicrobial Peptides and Innate Lung Defenses: Role in Infectious and Noninfectious Lung Diseases and Therapeutic Applications.

    PubMed

    Hiemstra, Pieter S; Amatngalim, Gimano D; van der Does, Anne M; Taube, Christian

    2016-02-01

    Respiratory infections are a major clinical problem, and treatment is increasingly complicated by the emergence of microbial antibiotic resistance. Development of new antibiotics is notoriously costly and slow; therefore, alternative strategies are needed. Antimicrobial peptides, central effector molecules of the immune system, are being considered as alternatives to conventional antibiotics. These peptides display a range of activities, including not only direct antimicrobial activity, but also immunomodulation and wound repair. In the lung, airway epithelial cells and neutrophils in particular contribute to their synthesis. The relevance of antimicrobial peptides for host defense against infection has been demonstrated in animal models and is supported by observations in patient studies, showing altered expression and/or unfavorable circumstances for their action in a variety of lung diseases. Importantly, antimicrobial peptides are active against microorganisms that are resistant against conventional antibiotics, including multidrug-resistant bacteria. Several strategies have been proposed to use these peptides in the treatment of infections, including direct administration of antimicrobial peptides, enhancement of their local production, and creation of more favorable circumstances for their action. In this review, recent developments in antimicrobial peptides research in the lung and clinical applications for novel therapies of lung diseases are discussed.

  11. Oligomeric structure of a cathelicidin antimicrobial peptide in dodecylphosphocholine micelle determined by NMR spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Saravanan, Rathi; Bhattacharjya, Surajit

    2011-01-01

    The broad spectrum of antibacterial activities of host defense cationic antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) arises from their ability to perturb membrane integrity of the microbes. The mechanisms are often thought to require assembly of AMPs on the membrane surface to form pores. However, three dimensional structures in the oligomeric form of AMPs in the context of lipid membranes are largely limited. Here, we demonstrate that a 22-residue antimicrobial peptide, termed VK22, derived from fowlicidin-1, a cathelicidin family of AMP from chicken oligomerizes into a predominantly tetrameric state in zwitterionic dodecylphosphocholine (DPC) micelles. An ensemble of NMR structures of VK22 determined in 200mM perdeuterated DPC, from 755 NOE constrains including 19 inter-helical NOEs, had revealed an assembly of four helices arranged in anti-parallel fashion. Hydrogen bonds, C(α)H-O=C types, and van der Waals interactions among the helical sub-units appear to be involved in the stabilization of the quaternary structures. The central region of the barrel shaped tetrameric bundle is non-polar with clusters of aromatic residues, whereas all the cationic residues are positioned at the termini. Paramagnetic spin labeled NMR experiments indicated that the tetrameric structure is embedded into micelles such that the non-polar region located inside the lipid acyl chains. Structure and micelle localization of a monomeric version, obtained from substitution of two Tyr residues with Ala, of the peptide is also compared. The mutated peptide VK22AA has been found be localized at the surface of the micelles. The tetrameric structure of VK22 delineates a small water pore that can be larger in the higher order oligomers. As these results provide structural insights, at atomic resolution, into the oligomeric states of a helical AMP in lipid environment, the structural details may be further utilized for the design of novel self-assembled membrane protein mimics.

  12. The Cooperative Behaviour of α-Helical Antimicrobial Peptides in Different Environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pinna, Marco; Wang, Janping; Mura, Manuela; Zhou, Yuhua; Zvelindovsky, Andrei; Dennison, Sarah; Phoenix, David

    2014-03-01

    A systematic analysis of the antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) cooperative action is performed by means of a full atomistic molecular dynamics simulation. The following peptide analogues: Aurein 2.5-COOH, Aurein 2.6-COOH and Aurein 3.1-COOH are investigated in different environments including aqueous solution, trifluoroethanol (TFE), palmitoyloleoylphosphatidylethanolamine (POPE), and palmitoyloleoylphosphatidylglycerol (POPG) lipid bilayers. Simulations conducted for monomer and trimer peptide highlight the importance of the cooperative behaviour and reveal the different mechanisms of antimicrobial peptides action in different lipid bilayers.

  13. Mechanisms of antimicrobial peptide action: studies of indolicidin assembly at model membrane interfaces by in situ atomic force microscopy.

    PubMed

    Shaw, James E; Alattia, Jean-René; Verity, Jocelyne E; Privé, Gilbert G; Yip, Christopher M

    2006-04-01

    We report here on an in situ atomic force microscopy study of the interaction of indolicidin, a tryptophan-rich antimicrobial peptide, with phase-segregated zwitterionic DOPC/DSPC supported planar bilayers. By varying the peptide concentration and bilayer composition through the inclusion of anionic lipids (DOPG or DSPG), we found that indolicidin interacts with these model membranes in one of two concentration-dependent manners. At low peptide concentrations, indolicidin forms an amorphous layer on the fluid domains when these domains contain anionic lipids. At high peptide concentrations, indolicidin appears to initiate a lowering of the gel-phase domains independent of the presence of an anionic lipid. Similar studies performed using membrane-raft mimetic bilayers comprising 30mol% cholesterol/1:1 DOPC/egg sphingomyelin revealed that indolicidin does not form a carpet-like layer on the zwitterionic DOPC domains at low peptide concentrations and does not induce membrane lowering of the liquid-ordered sphingomyelin/cholesterol-rich domains at high peptide concentration. Simultaneous AFM-confocal microscopy imaging did however reveal that indolicidin preferentially inserts into the fluid-phase DOPC domains. These data suggest that the indolicidin-membrane association is influenced greatly by specific electrostatic interactions, lipid fluidity, and peptide concentration. These insights provide a glimpse into the mechanism of the membrane selectivity of antibacterial peptides and suggest a powerful correlated approach for characterizing peptide-membrane interactions.

  14. Biophysical Investigation of the Membrane-Disrupting Mechanism of the Antimicrobial and Amyloid-Like Peptide Dermaseptin S9

    PubMed Central

    Caillon, Lucie; Killian, J. Antoinette; Lequin, Olivier; Khemtémourian, Lucie

    2013-01-01

    Dermaseptin S9 (Drs S9) is an atypical cationic antimicrobial peptide with a long hydrophobic core and with a propensity to form amyloid-like fibrils. Here we investigated its membrane interaction using a variety of biophysical techniques. Rather surprisingly, we found that Drs S9 induces efficient permeabilisation in zwitterionic phosphatidylcholine (PC) vesicles, but not in anionic phosphatidylglycerol (PG) vesicles. We also found that the peptide inserts more efficiently in PC than in PG monolayers. Therefore, electrostatic interactions between the cationic Drs S9 and anionic membranes cannot explain the selectivity of the peptide towards bacterial membranes. CD spectroscopy, electron microscopy and ThT fluorescence experiments showed that the peptide adopts slightly more β-sheet and has a higher tendency to form amyloid-like fibrils in the presence of PC membranes as compared to PG membranes. Thus, induction of leakage may be related to peptide aggregation. The use of a pre-incorporation protocol to reduce peptide/peptide interactions characteristic of aggregates in solution resulted in more α-helix formation and a more pronounced effect on the cooperativity of the gel-fluid lipid phase transition in all lipid systems tested. Calorimetric data together with 2H- and 31P-NMR experiments indicated that the peptide has a significant impact on the dynamic organization of lipid bilayers, albeit slightly less for zwitterionic than for anionic membranes. Taken together, our data suggest that in particular in membranes of zwitterionic lipids the peptide binds in an aggregated state resulting in membrane leakage. We propose that also the antimicrobial activity of Drs S9 may be a result of binding of the peptide in an aggregated state, but that specific binding and aggregation to bacterial membranes is regulated not by anionic lipids but by as yet unknown factors. PMID:24146759

  15. Understanding bacterial resistance to antimicrobial peptides: From the surface to deep inside.

    PubMed

    Maria-Neto, Simone; de Almeida, Keyla Caroline; Macedo, Maria Ligia Rodrigues; Franco, Octávio Luiz

    2015-11-01

    Resistant bacterial infections are a major health problem in many parts of the world. The major commercial antibiotic classes often fail to combat common bacteria. Although antimicrobial peptides are able to control bacterial infections by interfering with microbial metabolism and physiological processes in several ways, a large number of cases of resistance to antibiotic peptide classes have also been reported. To gain a better understanding of the resistance process various technologies have been applied. Here we discuss multiple strategies by which bacteria could develop enhanced antimicrobial peptide resistance, focusing on sub-cellular regions from the surface to deep inside, evaluating bacterial membranes, cell walls and cytoplasmic metabolism. Moreover, some high-throughput methods for antimicrobial resistance detection and discrimination are also examined. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Bacterial Resistance to Antimicrobial Peptides.

  16. A novel defensin-like antimicrobial peptide from the skin secretions of the tree frog, Theloderma kwangsiensis.

    PubMed

    Shen, Wang; Chen, Yan; Yao, Huimin; Du, Canwei; Luan, Ning; Yan, Xiuwen

    2016-01-15

    Defensins are one of the major families of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), and have been reported from prokaryotic to eukaryotic kingdoms. But defensins are seldom found in amphibian which is a major resource of novel AMPs. A novel defensin-like AMP (defensin-TK) was isolated and characterized from skin secretions of the tree frog Theloderma kwangsiensis. The cDNA encoding defensin-TK precursor was cloned from the skin cDNA library of T. kwangsiensis. The deduced precursor of defensin-TK was composed of three domains, a signal peptide of 16 residues, a spacer peptide of 1 residues and a mature peptide of 42 residues. The mature peptide of defensin-TK shared the highest identity with the salamander (Cynops fudingensis) defensin CFBD-1. The six conserved cysteines which formed intramolecular disulfide bonds of defensins also exist in defensin-TK. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that defensin-TK was closely related to fish β-defensins. Defensin-TK showed potent and broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity. In addition, defensin-TK exerted a low hemolytic activity on human red cells. These results suggested defensin-TK might play an important role in defense the skin pathogenic microbes of tree frog T. kwangsiensis, and might be a promising candidate for development of novel antimicrobial agents. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. A cumulative experience examining the effect of natural and synthetic antimicrobial peptides vs. Chlamydia trachomatis.

    PubMed

    Yasin, B; Pang, M; Wagar, E A

    2004-08-01

    We tested the activity of 48 structurally diverse antimicrobial peptides against Chlamydia trachomatis, serovar L2. The peptides' activity against C. trachomatis, serovar L2 was measured in 48-h McCoy cell shell vial assays. Peptides of 16-20 amino acids were more active than larger peptides, such as defensins. Beta-sheet protegrins, as well as alpha-helical peptides such as novispirin (G-10) were equally active. Enantiomers were as active as native structures. Moderate-sized circular mini-defensins were less effective against C. trachomatis. Moderate-sized cationic peptides may be useful in microbicide preparations designed to prevent chlamydial infection.

  18. Potent Inducers of Endogenous Antimicrobial Peptides for Host Directed Therapy of Infections

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ottosson, H.; Nylén, F.; Sarker, P.; Miraglia, E.; Bergman, P.; Gudmundsson, G. H.; Raqib, R.; Agerberth, B.; Strömberg, R.

    2016-11-01

    A new concept for treatment of infections is induction of our own antimicrobial peptides and the presented novel class of inducer, aroylated phenylenediamines (APDs), gives up to 20 to 30-fold induction of the human antimicrobial peptide LL-37, in vitro. In addition, oral administration of an APD in a rabbit model of Shigellosis resulted in recovery from the infection in a few days implying that APD’s are promising candidates for treatment of infections.

  19. Potent Inducers of Endogenous Antimicrobial Peptides for Host Directed Therapy of Infections

    PubMed Central

    Ottosson, H.; Nylén, F.; Sarker, P.; Miraglia, E.; Bergman, P.; Gudmundsson, G. H.; Raqib, R.; Agerberth, B.; Strömberg, R.

    2016-01-01

    A new concept for treatment of infections is induction of our own antimicrobial peptides and the presented novel class of inducer, aroylated phenylenediamines (APDs), gives up to 20 to 30-fold induction of the human antimicrobial peptide LL-37, in vitro. In addition, oral administration of an APD in a rabbit model of Shigellosis resulted in recovery from the infection in a few days implying that APD’s are promising candidates for treatment of infections. PMID:27827460

  20. Antimicrobial peptides from skin secretions of Chinese red belly toad Bombina maxima.

    PubMed

    Lai, Ren; Zheng, Yong Tang; Shen, Ji Hong; Liu, Guan Jie; Liu, Hen; Lee, Wen Hui; Tang, Shao Zhong; Zhang, Yun

    2002-03-01

    Two groups of antimicrobial peptides have been isolated from skin secretions of Bombina maxima. Peptides in the first group, named maximins 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5, are structurally related to bombinin-like peptides (BLPs). Unlike BLPs, sequence variations in maximins occurred all through the molecules. In addition to the potent antimicrobial activity, cytotoxicity against tumor cells and spermicidal action of maximins, maximin 3 possessed a significant anti-HIV activity. Maximins 1 and 3 were toxic to mice with LD(50) values of 8.2 and 4.3 mg/kg, respectively. Peptides in the second group, termed maximins H1, H2, H3 and H4, are homologous with bombinin H peptides. cDNA sequences revealed that one maximin peptide plus one maximin H peptide derived from a common larger protein.

  1. Euler buckling, membrane corrugation and pore formation induced by antimicrobial peptide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Golubovic, Leonardo; Gao, Lianghui; Chen, Licui; Jia, Nana; Fang, Weihai

    2014-03-01

    Antimicrobial peptides serve as defense weapons against bacteria. They are secreted by organisms of plants and animals and have a wide variety in composition and structure. In this study, we theoretically explore the effects of the antimicrobial peptides on the lipid bilayer membrane by using analytic arguments and the coarse grained dissipative particle dynamics simulations. We study peptide/lipid membrane complexes by considering peptides with various structure, hydrophobicity and peptide/lipid interaction strength. The role of lipid/water interaction is also discussed. We discuss a rich variety of membrane morphological changes induced by peptides, such as pore formation, membrane corrugation and Euler buckling. Such buckled membrane states have been indeed seen in a number of experiments with bacteria affected by peptide, yet this is the first theoretical study addressing these phenomena more deeply.

  2. Inducible Resistance of Fish Bacterial Pathogens to the Antimicrobial Peptide Cecropin B

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Cecropin B is a cationic antimicrobial peptide originally isolated from the diapausing pupae of the giant silk moth, Hylphora cecropia. Cecropin B elicits its antimicrobial effects through disruption of the anionic cell membranes of gram-negative bacteria. Previous work by our laboratory demonstra...

  3. Antimicrobial proline-rich peptides from the hemolymph of marine snail Rapana venosa.

    PubMed

    Dolashka, Pavlina; Moshtanska, Vesela; Borisova, Valika; Dolashki, Aleksander; Stevanovic, Stefan; Dimanov, Tzvetan; Voelter, Wolfgang

    2011-07-01

    Hemolymph of Rapana venosa snails is a complex mixture of biochemically and pharmacologically active components such as peptides and proteins. Antimicrobial peptides are gaining attention as antimicrobial alternatives to chemical food preservatives and commonly used antibiotics. Therefore, for the first time we have explored the isolation, identification and characterisation of 11 novel antimicrobial peptides produced by the hemolymph of molluscs. The isolated peptides from the hemolymph applying ultrafiltration and reverse-phase high-performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC) have molecular weights between 3000 and 9500 Da, determined by mass spectrometric analysis. The N-terminal sequences of the peptides identified by Edman degradation matched no peptides in the MASCOT search database, indicating novel proline-rich peptides. UV spectra revealed that these substances possessed the characteristics of protein peptides with acidic isoelectric points. However, no Cotton effects were observed between 190 and 280 nm by circular dichroism spectroscopy. Four of the pro-rich peptides also showed strong antimicrobial activities against tested microorganisms including Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria.

  4. Amyloidogenic amyloid-β-peptide variants induce microbial agglutination and exert antimicrobial activity

    PubMed Central

    Spitzer, Philipp; Condic, Mateja; Herrmann, Martin; Oberstein, Timo Jan; Scharin-Mehlmann, Marina; Gilbert, Daniel F.; Friedrich, Oliver; Grömer, Teja; Kornhuber, Johannes; Lang, Roland; Maler, Juan Manuel

    2016-01-01

    Amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides are the main components of the plaques found in the brains of patients with Alzheimer’s disease. However, Aβ peptides are also detectable in secretory compartments and peripheral blood contains a complex mixture of more than 40 different modified and/or N- and C-terminally truncated Aβ peptides. Recently, anti-infective properties of Aβ peptides have been reported. Here, we investigated the interaction of Aβ peptides of different lengths with various bacterial strains and the yeast Candida albicans. The amyloidogenic peptides Aβ1-42, Aβ2-42, and Aβ3p-42 but not the non-amyloidogenic peptides Aβ1-40 and Aβ2-40 bound to microbial surfaces. As observed by immunocytochemistry, scanning electron microscopy and Gram staining, treatment of several bacterial strains and Candida albicans with Aβ peptide variants ending at position 42 (Aβx-42) caused the formation of large agglutinates. These aggregates were not detected after incubation with Aβx-40. Furthermore, Aβx-42 exerted an antimicrobial activity on all tested pathogens, killing up to 80% of microorganisms within 6 h. Aβ1-40 only had a moderate antimicrobial activity against C. albicans. Agglutination of Aβ1-42 was accelerated in the presence of microorganisms. These data demonstrate that the amyloidogenic Aβx-42 variants have antimicrobial activity and may therefore act as antimicrobial peptides in the immune system. PMID:27624303

  5. Synthesis and biological activity of lipophilic analogs of the cationic antimicrobial active peptide anoplin.

    PubMed

    Chionis, Kostas; Krikorian, Dimitrios; Koukkou, Anna-Irini; Sakarellos-Daitsiotis, Maria; Panou-Pomonis, Eugenia

    2016-11-01

    Anoplin is a short natural cationic antimicrobial peptide which is derived from the venom sac of the solitary wasp, Anoplius samariensis. Due to its short sequence G(1) LLKR(5) IKT(8) LL-NH2 , it is ideal for research tests. In this study, novel analogs of anoplin were prepared and examined for their antimicrobial, hemolytic activity, and proteolytic stability. Specific substitutions were introduced in amino acids Gly(1) , Arg(5) , and Thr(8) and lipophilic groups with different lengths in the N-terminus in order to investigate how these modifications affect their antimicrobial activity. These cationic analogs exhibited higher antimicrobial activity than the native peptide; they are also nontoxic at their minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) values and resistant to enzymatic degradation. The substituted peptide GLLKF(5) IKK(8) LL-NH2 exhibited high activity against Gram-negative bacterium Zymomonas mobilis (MIC = 7 µg/ml), and the insertion of octanoic, decanoic, and dodecanoic acid residues in its N-terminus increased the antimicrobial activity against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria (MIC = 5 µg/ml). The conformational characteristics of the peptide analogs were studied by circular dichroism. Structure activity studies revealed that the substitution of specific amino acids and the incorporation of lipophilic groups enhanced the amphipathic α-helical conformation inducing better antimicrobial effects. Copyright © 2016 European Peptide Society and John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2016 European Peptide Society and John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  6. Five novel antimicrobial peptides from skin secretions of the frog, Amolops loloensis.

    PubMed

    Wang, Meijuan; Wang, Ying; Wang, Aili; Song, Yuzhu; Ma, Dongying; Yang, Hailong; Ma, Yufang; Lai, Ren

    2010-01-01

    While investigating antimicrobial peptide diversity of Amolops loloensis, five novel antimicrobial peptides belonging to two families were identified from skin secretions of this frog. The first family including two members is esculentin-2-AL (esculentin-2-ALa and -ALb); the second family including three members is temporin-AL (temporin-ALd to -ALf). The family of esculentin-2-AL is composed of 37 amino acid residues (aa); the family of temporin-AL is composed of 16, 13 and 10 aa, respectively. All of these antimicrobial peptides showed antimicrobial activities against tested microorganisms. cDNAs encoding precursors of esculentin-2-ALs and temporin-ALs were cloned from the skin cDNA library of A. loloensis. All the precursors share similar overall structures. There is a typical prohormone processing signal (Lys-Arg) located between the acidic propiece and the mature peptide. The antimicrobial peptide family of esculentin-2 is firstly reported in the genus of Amolops. Combined with previous reports, a total of four antimicrobial peptide families have been identified from the genus of Amolops; three of them are also found in the genus of Rana. These results suggest the possible evolutionary connection between the genera Amolops and Rana.

  7. Self-assembly of cationic multidomain peptide hydrogels: supramolecular nanostructure and rheological properties dictate antimicrobial activity.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Linhai; Xu, Dawei; Sellati, Timothy J; Dong, He

    2015-12-07

    Hydrogels are an important class of biomaterials that have been widely utilized for a variety of biomedical/medical applications. The biological performance of hydrogels, particularly those used as wound dressing could be greatly advanced if imbued with inherent antimicrobial activity capable of staving off colonization of the wound site by opportunistic bacterial pathogens. Possessing such antimicrobial properties would also protect the hydrogel itself from being adversely affected by microbial attachment to its surface. We have previously demonstrated the broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity of supramolecular assemblies of cationic multi-domain peptides (MDPs) in solution. Here, we extend the 1-D soluble supramolecular assembly to 3-D hydrogels to investigate the effect of the supramolecular nanostructure and its rheological properties on the antimicrobial activity of self-assembled hydrogels. Among designed MDPs, the bactericidal activity of peptide hydrogels was found to follow an opposite trend to that in solution. Improved antimicrobial activity of self-assembled peptide hydrogels is dictated by the combined effect of supramolecular surface chemistry and storage modulus of the bulk materials, rather than the ability of individual peptides/peptide assemblies to penetrate bacterial cell membrane as observed in solution. The structure-property-activity relationship developed through this study will provide important guidelines for designing biocompatible peptide hydrogels with built-in antimicrobial activity for various biomedical applications.

  8. De Novo Transcriptome Analysis and Detection of Antimicrobial Peptides of the American Cockroach Periplaneta americana (Linnaeus)

    PubMed Central

    Subramaniyam, Sathiyamoorthy; Yun, Eun-Young; Kim, Iksoo; Park, Junhyung; Hwang, Jae Sam

    2016-01-01

    Cockroaches are surrogate hosts for microbes that cause many human diseases. In spite of their generally destructive nature, cockroaches have recently been found to harbor potentially beneficial and medically useful substances such as drugs and allergens. However, genomic information for the American cockroach (Periplaneta americana) is currently unavailable; therefore, transcriptome and gene expression profiling is needed as an important resource to better understand the fundamental biological mechanisms of this species, which would be particularly useful for the selection of novel antimicrobial peptides. Thus, we performed de novo transcriptome analysis of P. americana that were or were not immunized with Escherichia coli. Using an Illumina HiSeq sequencer, we generated a total of 9.5 Gb of sequences, which were assembled into 85,984 contigs and functionally annotated using Basic Local Alignment Search Tool (BLAST), Gene Ontology (GO), and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) database terms. Finally, using an in silico antimicrobial peptide prediction method, 86 antimicrobial peptide candidates were predicted from the transcriptome, and 21 of these peptides were experimentally validated for their antimicrobial activity against yeast and gram positive and -negative bacteria by a radial diffusion assay. Notably, 11 peptides showed strong antimicrobial activities against these organisms and displayed little or no cytotoxic effects in the hemolysis and cell viability assay. This work provides prerequisite baseline data for the identification and development of novel antimicrobial peptides, which is expected to provide a better understanding of the phenomenon of innate immunity in similar species. PMID:27167617

  9. De Novo Transcriptome Analysis and Detection of Antimicrobial Peptides of the American Cockroach Periplaneta americana (Linnaeus).

    PubMed

    Kim, In-Woo; Lee, Joon Ha; Subramaniyam, Sathiyamoorthy; Yun, Eun-Young; Kim, Iksoo; Park, Junhyung; Hwang, Jae Sam

    2016-01-01

    Cockroaches are surrogate hosts for microbes that cause many human diseases. In spite of their generally destructive nature, cockroaches have recently been found to harbor potentially beneficial and medically useful substances such as drugs and allergens. However, genomic information for the American cockroach (Periplaneta americana) is currently unavailable; therefore, transcriptome and gene expression profiling is needed as an important resource to better understand the fundamental biological mechanisms of this species, which would be particularly useful for the selection of novel antimicrobial peptides. Thus, we performed de novo transcriptome analysis of P. americana that were or were not immunized with Escherichia coli. Using an Illumina HiSeq sequencer, we generated a total of 9.5 Gb of sequences, which were assembled into 85,984 contigs and functionally annotated using Basic Local Alignment Search Tool (BLAST), Gene Ontology (GO), and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) database terms. Finally, using an in silico antimicrobial peptide prediction method, 86 antimicrobial peptide candidates were predicted from the transcriptome, and 21 of these peptides were experimentally validated for their antimicrobial activity against yeast and gram positive and -negative bacteria by a radial diffusion assay. Notably, 11 peptides showed strong antimicrobial activities against these organisms and displayed little or no cytotoxic effects in the hemolysis and cell viability assay. This work provides prerequisite baseline data for the identification and development of novel antimicrobial peptides, which is expected to provide a better understanding of the phenomenon of innate immunity in similar species.

  10. LEAP-1, a novel highly disulfide-bonded human peptide, exhibits antimicrobial activity.

    PubMed

    Krause, A; Neitz, S; Mägert, H J; Schulz, A; Forssmann, W G; Schulz-Knappe, P; Adermann, K

    2000-09-01

    We report the isolation and characterization of a novel human peptide with antimicrobial activity, termed LEAP-1 (liver-expressed antimicrobial peptide). Using a mass spectrometric assay detecting cysteine-rich peptides, a 25-residue peptide containing four disulfide bonds was identified in human blood ultrafiltrate. LEAP-1 expression was predominantly detected in the liver, and, to a much lower extent, in the heart. In radial diffusion assays, Gram-positive Bacillus megaterium, Bacillus subtilis, Micrococcus luteus, Staphylococcus carnosus, and Gram-negative Neisseria cinerea as well as the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae dose-dependently exhibited sensitivity upon treatment with synthetic LEAP-1. The discovery of LEAP-1 extends the known families of mammalian peptides with antimicrobial activity by its novel disulfide motif and distinct expression pattern.

  11. Shrimp humoral responses against pathogens: antimicrobial peptides and melanization.

    PubMed

    Tassanakajon, Anchalee; Rimphanitchayakit, Vichien; Visetnan, Suwattana; Amparyup, Piti; Somboonwiwat, Kunlaya; Charoensapsri, Walaiporn; Tang, Sureerat

    2017-05-10

    Diseases have caused tremendous economic losses and become the major problem threatening the sustainable development of shrimp aquaculture. The knowledge of host defense mechanisms against invading pathogens is essential for the implementation of efficient strategies to prevent disease outbreaks. Like other invertebrates, shrimp rely on the innate immune system to defend themselves against a range of microbes by recognizing and destroying them through cellular and humoral immune responses. Detection of microbial pathogens triggers the signal transduction pathways including the NF-κB signaling, Toll and Imd pathways, resulting in the activation of genes involved in host defense responses. In this review, we update the discovery of components of the Toll and Imd pathways in shrimp and their participation in the regulation of shrimp antimicrobial peptide (AMP) synthesis. We also focus on a recent progress on the two most powerful and the best-studied shrimp humoral responses: AMPs and melanization. Shrimp AMPs are mainly cationic peptides with sequence diversity which endues them the broad range of activities against microorganisms. Melanization, regulated by the prophenoloxidase activating cascade, also plays a crucial role in killing and sequestration of invading pathogens. The progress and emerging research on mechanisms and functional characterization of components of these two indispensable humoral responses in shrimp immunity are summarized and discussed. Interestingly, the pattern recognition protein (PRP) crosstalk is evidenced between the proPO activating cascade and the AMP synthesis pathways in shrimp, which enables the innate immune system to build up efficient immune responses. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Mechanisms and consequences of bacterial resistance to antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Andersson, D I; Hughes, D; Kubicek-Sutherland, J Z

    2016-05-01

    Cationic antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are an intrinsic part of the human innate immune system. Over 100 different human AMPs are known to exhibit broad-spectrum antibacterial activity. Because of the increased frequency of resistance to conventional antibiotics there is an interest in developing AMPs as an alternative antibacterial therapy. Several cationic peptides that are derivatives of AMPs from the human innate immune system are currently in clinical development. There are also ongoing clinical studies aimed at modulating the expression of AMPs to boost the human innate immune response. In this review we discuss the potential problems associated with these therapeutic approaches. There is considerable experimental data describing mechanisms by which bacteria can develop resistance to AMPs. As for any type of drug resistance, the rate by which AMP resistance would emerge and spread in a population of bacteria in a natural setting will be determined by a complex interplay of several different factors, including the mutation supply rate, the fitness of the resistant mutant at different AMP concentrations, and the strength of the selective pressure. Several studies have already shown that AMP-resistant bacterial mutants display broad cross-resistance to a variety of AMPs with different structures and modes of action. Therefore, routine clinical administration of AMPs to treat bacterial infections may select for resistant bacterial pathogens capable of better evading the innate immune system. The ramifications of therapeutic levels of exposure on the development of AMP resistance and bacterial pathogenesis are not yet understood. This is something that needs to be carefully studied and monitored if AMPs are used in clinical settings.

  13. Relative free energy of binding between antimicrobial peptides and SDS or DPC micelles

    PubMed Central

    Sayyed-Ahmad, Abdallah; Khandelia, Himanshu; Kaznessis, Yiannis N.

    2010-01-01

    We present relative binding free energy calculations for six antimicrobial peptide–micelle systems, three peptides interacting with two types of micelles. The peptides are the scorpion derived antimicrobial peptide (AMP), IsCT and two of its analogues. The micelles are dodecylphosphatidylcholine (DPC) and sodium dodecylsulphate (SDS) micelles. The interfacial electrostatic properties of DPC and SDS micelles are assumed to be similar to those of zwitterionic mammalian and anionic bacterial membrane interfaces, respectively. We test the hypothesis that the binding strength between peptides and the anionic micelle SDS can provide information on peptide antimicrobial activity, since it is widely accepted that AMPs function by binding to and disrupting the predominantly anionic lipid bilayer of the bacterial cytoplasmic membrane. We also test the hypothesis that the binding strength between peptides and the zwitterionic micelle DPC can provide information on peptide haemolytic activities, since it is accepted that they also bind to and disrupt the zwitterionic membrane of mammalian cells. Equilibrium structures of the peptides, micelles and peptide–micelle complexes are obtained from more than 300 ns of molecular dynamics simulations. A thermodynamic cycle is introduced to compute the binding free energy from electrostatic, non-electrostatic and entropic contributions. We find relative binding free energy strengths between peptides and SDS to correlate with the experimentally measured rankings for peptide antimicrobial activities, and relative free energy binding strengths between peptides and DPC to correlate with the observed rankings for peptide haemolytic toxicities. These findings point to the importance of peptide–membrane binding strength for antimicrobial activity and haemolytic activity. PMID:21113423

  14. Enhanced Membrane Pore Formation through High-Affinity Targeted Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Arnusch, Christopher J.; Pieters, Roland J.; Breukink, Eefjan

    2012-01-01

    Many cationic antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) target the unique lipid composition of the prokaryotic cell membrane. However, the micromolar activities common for these peptides are considered weak in comparison to nisin, which follows a targeted, pore-forming mode of action. Here we show that AMPs can be modified with a high-affinity targeting module, which enables membrane permeabilization at low concentration. Magainin 2 and a truncated peptide analog were conjugated to vancomycin using click chemistry, and could be directed towards specific membrane embedded receptors both in model membrane systems and whole cells. Compared with untargeted vesicles, a gain in permeabilization efficacy of two orders of magnitude was reached with large unilamellar vesicles that included lipid II, the target of vancomycin. The truncated vancomycin-peptide conjugate showed an increased activity against vancomycin resistant Enterococci, whereas the full-length conjugate was more active against a targeted eukaryotic cell model: lipid II containing erythrocytes. This study highlights that AMPs can be made more selective and more potent against biological membranes that contain structures that can be targeted. PMID:22768121

  15. Proline-rich antimicrobial peptides: potential therapeutics against antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

    PubMed

    Li, Wenyi; Tailhades, Julien; O'Brien-Simpson, Neil M; Separovic, Frances; Otvos, Laszlo; Hossain, M Akhter; Wade, John D

    2014-10-01

    The increasing resistance of pathogens to antibiotics causes a huge clinical burden that places great demands on academic researchers and the pharmaceutical industry for resolution. Antimicrobial peptides, part of native host defense, have emerged as novel potential antibiotic alternatives. Among the different classes of antimicrobial peptides, proline-rich antimicrobial peptides, predominantly sourced from insects, have been extensively investigated to study their specific modes of action. In this review, we focus on recent developments in these peptides. They show a variety of modes of actions, including mechanism shift at high concentration, non-lytic mechanisms, as well as possessing different intracellular targets and lipopolysaccharide binding activity. Furthermore, proline-rich antimicrobial peptides display the ability to not only modulate the immune system via cytokine activity or angiogenesis but also possess properties of penetrating cell membranes and crossing the blood brain barrier suggesting a role as potential novel carriers. Ongoing studies of these peptides will likely lead to the development of more potent antimicrobial peptides that may serve as important additions to the armoury of agents against bacterial infection and drug delivery.

  16. Role of amphipathicity and hydrophobicity in the balance between hemolysis and peptide-membrane interactions of three related antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Hollmann, Axel; Martínez, Melina; Noguera, Martín E; Augusto, Marcelo T; Disalvo, Anibal; Santos, Nuno C; Semorile, Liliana; Maffía, Paulo C

    2016-05-01

    Cationic antimicrobial peptides (CAMPs) represent important self defense molecules in many organisms, including humans. These peptides have a broad spectrum of activities, killing or neutralizing many Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria. The emergence of multidrug resistant microbes has stimulated research on the development of alternative antibiotics. In the search for new antibiotics, cationic antimicrobial peptides (CAMPs) offer a viable alternative to conventional antibiotics, as they physically disrupt the bacterial membranes, leading to lysis of microbial membranes and eventually cell death. In particular, the group of linear α-helical cationic peptides has attracted increasing interest from clinical as well as basic research during the last decade. In this work, we studied the biophysical and microbiological characteristics of three new designed CAMPs. We modified a previously studied CAMP sequence, in order to increase or diminish the hydrophobic face, changing the position of two lysines or replacing three leucines, respectively. These mutations modified the hydrophobic moment of the resulting peptides and allowed us to study the importance of this parameter in the membrane interactions of the peptides. The structural properties of the peptides were also correlated with their membrane-disruptive abilities, antimicrobial activities and hemolysis of human red blood cells.

  17. Differential expression of antimicrobial peptides in margins of chronic wounds.

    PubMed

    Dressel, Stefanie; Harder, Jürgen; Cordes, Jesko; Wittersheim, Maike; Meyer-Hoffert, Ulf; Sunderkötter, Cord; Gläser, Regine

    2010-07-01

    Skin wounds usually heal without major infections, although the loss of the mechanical epithelial barrier exposes the tissue to various bacteria. One reason may be the expression of antimicrobial peptides (AMP) of which some [human beta-defensins (hBD) and LL-37] were recently shown to support additionally certain steps of wound healing. There are no studies which have compared expression patterns of different classes of AMP in chronic wounds. The aim of our study was therefore to analyse the expression profile of hBD-2, hBD-3, LL-37, psoriasin and RNase 7 by immunohistochemistry from defined wound margins of chronic venous ulcers. We detected a strong induction of psoriasin and hBD-2 in chronic wounds in comparison with healthy skin. Except for stratum corneum, no expression of RNase 7 and LL-37 was detected in the epidermis while expression of hBD-3 was heterogeneous. Bacterial swabs identified Staphylococcus aureus and additional bacterial populations, but no association between colonization and AMP expression was found. The differential expression of AMP is noteworthy considering the high bacterial load of chronic ulcers. Clinically, supplementation of AMP with the capability to enhance wound healing besides restricting bacterial overgrowth could present a physiological support for treatment of disturbed wound healing.

  18. Reactive Oxygen Species, Apoptosis, Antimicrobial Peptides and Human Inflammatory Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Oyinloye, Babatunji Emmanuel; Adenowo, Abiola Fatimah; Kappo, Abidemi Paul

    2015-01-01

    Excessive free radical generation, especially reactive oxygen species (ROS) leading to oxidative stress in the biological system, has been implicated in the pathogenesis and pathological conditions associated with diverse human inflammatory diseases (HIDs). Although inflammation which is considered advantageous is a defensive mechanism in response to xenobiotics and foreign pathogen; as a result of cellular damage arising from oxidative stress, if uncontrolled, it may degenerate to chronic inflammation when the ROS levels exceed the antioxidant capacity. Therefore, in the normal resolution of inflammatory reactions, apoptosis is acknowledged to play a crucial role, while on the other hand, dysregulation in the induction of apoptosis by enhanced ROS production could also result in excessive apoptosis identified in the pathogenesis of HIDs. Apparently, a careful balance must be maintained in this complex environment. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have been proposed in this review as an excellent candidate capable of playing prominent roles in maintaining this balance. Consequently, in novel drug design for the treatment and management of HIDs, AMPs are promising candidates owing to their size and multidimensional properties as well as their wide spectrum of activities and indications of reduced rate of resistance. PMID:25850012

  19. Antimicrobial peptides and gut microbiota in homeostasis and pathology

    PubMed Central

    Ostaff, Maureen J; Stange, Eduard Friedrich; Wehkamp, Jan

    2013-01-01

    We survive because we adapted to a world of microorganisms. All our epithelial surfaces participate in keeping up an effective barrier against microbes while not initiating ongoing inflammatory processes and risking collateral damage to the host. Major players in this scenario are antimicrobial peptides (AMPs). Such broad-spectrum innate antibiotics are in part produced by specialized cells but also widely sourced from all epithelia as well as circulating inflammatory cells. AMPs belong to an ancient defense system found in all organisms and participated in a preservative co-evolution with a complex microbiome. Particularly interesting interactions between host barrier and microbiota can be found in the gut. The intestinal cell lining not only has to maintain a tightly regulated homeostasis during its high-throughput regeneration, but also a balanced relationship towards an extreme number of mutualistic or commensal inhabitants. Recent research suggests that advancing our understanding of the circumstances of such balanced and sometimes imbalanced interactions between gut microbiota and host AMPs should have therapeutic implications for different intestinal disorders. PMID:24039130

  20. Regulation of Antimicrobial Peptides in Aedes aegypti Aag2 Cells

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Rudian; Zhu, Yibin; Pang, Xiaojing; Xiao, Xiaoping; Zhang, Renli; Cheng, Gong

    2017-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are an important group of immune effectors that play a role in combating microbial infections in invertebrates. Most of the current information on the regulation of insect AMPs in microbial infection have been gained from Drosophila, and their regulation in other insects are still not completely understood. Here, we generated an AMP induction profile in response to infections with some Gram-negative, -positive bacteria, and fungi in Aedes aegypti embryonic Aag2 cells. Most of the AMP inductions caused by the gram-negative bacteria was controlled by the Immune deficiency (Imd) pathway; nonetheless, Gambicin, an AMP gene discovered only in mosquitoes, was combinatorially regulated by the Imd, Toll and JAK-STAT pathways in the Aag2 cells. Gambicin promoter analyses including specific sequence motif deletions implicated these three pathways in Gambicin activity, as shown by a luciferase assay. Moreover, the recognition between Rel1 (refer to Dif/Dorsal in Drosophila) and STAT and their regulatory sites at the Gambicin promoter site was validated by a super-shift electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA). Our study provides information that increases our understanding of the regulation of AMPs in response to microbial infections in mosquitoes. And it is a new finding that the A. aegypti AMPs are mainly regulated Imd pathway only, which is quite different from the previous understanding obtained from Drosophila. PMID:28217557

  1. Msb2 Shedding Protects Candida albicans against Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Szafranski-Schneider, Eva; Swidergall, Marc; Cottier, Fabien; Tielker, Denis; Román, Elvira; Pla, Jesus; Ernst, Joachim F.

    2012-01-01

    Msb2 is a sensor protein in the plasma membrane of fungi. In the human fungal pathogen C. albicans Msb2 signals via the Cek1 MAP kinase pathway to maintain cell wall integrity and allow filamentous growth. Msb2 doubly epitope-tagged in its large extracellular and small cytoplasmic domain was efficiently cleaved during liquid and surface growth and the extracellular domain was almost quantitatively released into the growth medium. Msb2 cleavage was independent of proteases Sap9, Sap10 and Kex2. Secreted Msb2 was highly O-glycosylated by protein mannosyltransferases including Pmt1 resulting in an apparent molecular mass of >400 kDa. Deletion analyses revealed that the transmembrane region is required for Msb2 function, while the large N-terminal and the small cytoplasmic region function to downregulate Msb2 signaling or, respectively, allow its induction by tunicamycin. Purified extracellular Msb2 domain protected fungal and bacterial cells effectively from antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) histatin-5 and LL-37. AMP inactivation was not due to degradation but depended on the quantity and length of the Msb2 glycofragment. C. albicans msb2 mutants were supersensitive to LL-37 but not histatin-5, suggesting that secreted rather than cell-associated Msb2 determines AMP protection. Thus, in addition to its sensor function Msb2 has a second activity because shedding of its glycofragment generates AMP quorum resistance. PMID:22319443

  2. Role of Antimicrobial Peptides in Amphibian Defense Against Trematode Infection

    PubMed Central

    Calhoun, Dana M.; Woodhams, Doug; Howard, Cierra; LaFonte, Bryan E.; Gregory, Jacklyn R.; Johnson, Pieter T. J.

    2016-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) contribute to the immune defenses of many vertebrates, including amphibians. As larvae, amphibians are often exposed to the infectious stages of trematode parasites, many of which must penetrate the host’s skin, potentially interacting with host AMPs. We tested the effects of the natural AMPs repertoires on both the survival of trematode infectious stages as well as their ability to infect larval amphibians. All five trematode species exhibited decreased survival of cercariae in response to higher concentrations of adult bullfrog AMPs, but no effect when exposed to AMPs from larval bullfrogs. Similarly, the use of norepinephrine to remove AMPs from larval bullfrogs, Pacific chorus frogs, and gray treefrogs had only weak (gray treefrogs) or non-significant (other tested species) effects on infection success by Ribeiroia ondatrae. We nonetheless observed strong differences in parasite infection as a function of both host stage (first- versus second-year bullfrogs) and host species (Pacific chorus frogs versus gray treefrogs) that were apparently unrelated to AMPs. Taken together, our results suggest that AMPs do not play a significant role in defending larval amphibians against trematode cercariae, but that they could be one mechanism helping to prevent infection of post-metamorphic amphibians, particularly for highly aquatic species. PMID:26911920

  3. Regulation of Antimicrobial Peptides in Aedes aegypti Aag2 Cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Rudian; Zhu, Yibin; Pang, Xiaojing; Xiao, Xiaoping; Zhang, Renli; Cheng, Gong

    2017-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are an important group of immune effectors that play a role in combating microbial infections in invertebrates. Most of the current information on the regulation of insect AMPs in microbial infection have been gained from Drosophila, and their regulation in other insects are still not completely understood. Here, we generated an AMP induction profile in response to infections with some Gram-negative, -positive bacteria, and fungi in Aedes aegypti embryonic Aag2 cells. Most of the AMP inductions caused by the gram-negative bacteria was controlled by the Immune deficiency (Imd) pathway; nonetheless, Gambicin, an AMP gene discovered only in mosquitoes, was combinatorially regulated by the Imd, Toll and JAK-STAT pathways in the Aag2 cells. Gambicin promoter analyses including specific sequence motif deletions implicated these three pathways in Gambicin activity, as shown by a luciferase assay. Moreover, the recognition between Rel1 (refer to Dif/Dorsal in Drosophila) and STAT and their regulatory sites at the Gambicin promoter site was validated by a super-shift electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA). Our study provides information that increases our understanding of the regulation of AMPs in response to microbial infections in mosquitoes. And it is a new finding that the A. aegypti AMPs are mainly regulated Imd pathway only, which is quite different from the previous understanding obtained from Drosophila.

  4. High Specific Selectivity and Membrane-Active Mechanism of Synthetic Cationic Hybrid Antimicrobial Peptides Based on the Peptide FV7

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Tingting; Wu, Di; Li, Weizhong; Zheng, Xin; Li, Weifen; Shan, Anshan

    2017-01-01

    Hybrid peptides integrating different functional domains of peptides have many advantages, such as remarkable antimicrobial activity, lower hemolysis and ideal cell selectivity, compared with natural antimicrobial peptides. FV7 (FRIRVRV-NH2), a consensus amphiphilic sequence was identified as being analogous to host defense peptides. In this study, we designed a series of hybrid peptides FV7-LL-37 (17–29) (FV-LL), FV7-magainin 2 (9–21) (FV-MA) and FV7-cecropin A (1–8) (FV-CE) by combining the FV7 sequence with the small functional sequences LL-37 (17–29) (LL), magainin 2 (9–21) (MA) and cecropin A (1–8) (CE) which all come from well-described natural peptides. The results demonstrated that the synthetic hybrid peptides, in particular FV-LL, had potent antibacterial activities over a wide range of Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria with lower hemolytic activity than other peptides. Furthermore, fluorescent spectroscopy indicated that the hybrid peptide FV-LL exhibited marked membrane destruction by inducing outer and inner bacterial membrane permeabilization, while scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) demonstrated that FV-LL damaged membrane integrity by disrupting the bacterial membrane. Inhibiting biofilm formation assays also showed that FV-LL had similar anti-biofilm activity compared with the functional peptide sequence FV7. Synthetic cationic hybrid peptides based on FV7 could provide new models for combining different functional domains and demonstrate effective avenues to screen for novel antimicrobial agents. PMID:28178190

  5. High Specific Selectivity and Membrane-Active Mechanism of Synthetic Cationic Hybrid Antimicrobial Peptides Based on the Peptide FV7.

    PubMed

    Tan, Tingting; Wu, Di; Li, Weizhong; Zheng, Xin; Li, Weifen; Shan, Anshan

    2017-02-06

    Hybrid peptides integrating different functional domains of peptides have many advantages, such as remarkable antimicrobial activity, lower hemolysis and ideal cell selectivity, compared with natural antimicrobial peptides. FV7 (FRIRVRV-NH₂), a consensus amphiphilic sequence was identified as being analogous to host defense peptides. In this study, we designed a series of hybrid peptides FV7-LL-37 (17-29) (FV-LL), FV7-magainin 2 (9-21) (FV-MA) and FV7-cecropin A (1-8) (FV-CE) by combining the FV7 sequence with the small functional sequences LL-37 (17-29) (LL), magainin 2 (9-21) (MA) and cecropin A (1-8) (CE) which all come from well-described natural peptides. The results demonstrated that the synthetic hybrid peptides, in particular FV-LL, had potent antibacterial activities over a wide range of Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria with lower hemolytic activity than other peptides. Furthermore, fluorescent spectroscopy indicated that the hybrid peptide FV-LL exhibited marked membrane destruction by inducing outer and inner bacterial membrane permeabilization, while scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) demonstrated that FV-LL damaged membrane integrity by disrupting the bacterial membrane. Inhibiting biofilm formation assays also showed that FV-LL had similar anti-biofilm activity compared with the functional peptide sequence FV7. Synthetic cationic hybrid peptides based on FV7 could provide new models for combining different functional domains and demonstrate effective avenues to screen for novel antimicrobial agents.

  6. A novel antifungal peptide designed from the primary structure of a natural antimicrobial peptide purified from Argopecten purpuratus hemocytes.

    PubMed

    Arenas, Gloria; Guzmán, Fanny; Cárdenas, Constanza; Mercado, Luis; Marshall, Sergio H

    2009-08-01

    We have isolated and purified a natural antimicrobial peptide from Argopecten purpuratus hemocytes. 47 residues were determined from its primary structure representing the N-terminal of the complete sequence. This peptide of 5100.78Da was chemically synthesized and named Ap. The peptide has 25% of hydrophobic amino acids with a net charge of +1, and partial homology with known active antimicrobial peptides. Based on that sequence, a new peptide was designed and modeled to increase hydrophobicity and cationicity. The designed 30-residue peptide was chemically synthesized resulting in a novel 38% hydrophobic molecule named peptide Ap-S, with a net charge of +5 and 3028Da. A secondary structure was shown by circular dichroism, thus exposing a hydrophobic epitope toward the N-terminus and a hydrophilic one toward the C-terminus, improving amphipathicity. Ap-S was much more active than the parental Ap. Ap-S up to 100microM has no cytotoxic effect against fish cell line CHSE-214. We demonstrated that the chemical modification of a natural peptide and the chemical synthesis of derived molecules may be a powerful tool for obtaining substitutes to conventional antibiotics, displaying the many advantages of antimicrobial peptides and overcoming the limitations of natural peptides for large-scale production and application, such as the low specific activity and the minute amounts recovered in vivo. This peptide may have a relevant application in aquaculture by controlling Saprolegna sp., a parasitic pathogen fungus that attacks the culture of fish in different stages of their growth, from egg to adult.

  7. Disruption of drug-resistant biofilms using de novo designed short α-helical antimicrobial peptides with idealized facial amphiphilicity.

    PubMed

    Khara, Jasmeet Singh; Obuobi, Sybil; Wang, Ying; Hamilton, Melissa Shea; Robertson, Brian D; Newton, Sandra M; Yang, Yi Yan; Langford, Paul R; Ee, Pui Lai Rachel

    2017-07-15

    The escalating threat of antimicrobial resistance has increased pressure to develop novel therapeutic strategies to tackle drug-resistant infections. Antimicrobial peptides have emerged as a promising class of therapeutics for various systemic and topical clinical applications. In this study, the de novo design of α-helical peptides with idealized facial amphiphilicities, based on an understanding of the pertinent features of protein secondary structures, is presented. Synthetic amphiphiles composed of the backbone sequence (X1Y1Y2X2)n, where X1 and X2 are hydrophobic residues (Leu or Ile or Trp), Y1 and Y2 are cationic residues (Lys), and n is the number repeat units (2 or 2.5 or 3), demonstrated potent broad-spectrum antimicrobial activities against clinical isolates of drug-susceptible and multi-drug resistant bacteria. Live-cell imaging revealed that the most selective peptide, (LKKL)3, promoted rapid permeabilization of bacterial membranes. Importantly, (LKKL)3 not only suppressed biofilm growth, but effectively disrupted mature biofilms after only 2h of treatment. The peptides (LKKL)3 and (WKKW)3 suppressed the production of LPS-induced pro-inflammatory mediators to levels of unstimulated controls at low micromolar concentrations. Thus, the rational design strategies proposed herein can be implemented to develop potent, selective and multifunctional α-helical peptides to eradicate drug-resistant biofilm-associated infections. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are increasingly explored as therapeutics for drug-resistant and biofilm-related infections to help expand the size and quality of the current antibiotic pipeline in the face of mounting antimicrobial resistance. Here, synthetic peptides rationally designed based upon principles governing the folding of natural α-helical AMPs, comprising the backbone sequence (X1Y1Y2X2)n, and which assemble into α-helical structures with idealized facial amphiphilicity, is presented. These multifunctional peptide

  8. Toward Infection-Resistant Surfaces: Achieving High Antimicrobial Peptide Potency by Modulating the Functionality of Polymer Brush and Peptide.

    PubMed

    Yu, Kai; Lo, Joey C Y; Mei, Yan; Haney, Evan F; Siren, Erika; Kalathottukaren, Manu Thomas; Hancock, Robert E W; Lange, Dirk; Kizhakkedathu, Jayachandran N

    2015-12-30

    Bacterial infection associated with indwelling medical devices and implants is a major clinical issue, and the prevention or treatment of such infections is challenging. Antimicrobial coatings offer a significant step toward addressing this important clinical problem. Antimicrobial coatings based on tethered antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) on hydrophilic polymer brushes have been shown to be one of the most promising strategies to avoid bacterial colonization and have demonstrated broad spectrum activity. Optimal combinations of the functionality of the polymer-brush-tethered AMPs are essential to maintaining long-term AMP activity on the surface. However, there is limited knowledge currently available on this topic. Here we report the development of potent antimicrobial coatings on implant surfaces by elucidating the roles of polymer brush chemistry and peptide structure on the overall antimicrobial activity of the coatings. We screened several combinations of polymer brush coatings and AMPs constructed on nanoparticles, titanium surfaces, and quartz slides on their antimicrobial activity and bacterial adhesion against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. Highly efficient killing of planktonic bacteria by the antimicrobial coatings on nanoparticle surfaces, as well as potent killing of adhered bacteria in the case of coatings on titanium surfaces, was observed. Remarkably, the antimicrobial activity of AMP-conjugated brush coatings demonstrated a clear dependence on the polymer brush chemistry and peptide structure, and optimization of these parameters is critical to achieving infection-resistant surfaces. By analyzing the interaction of polymer-brush-tethered AMPs with model lipid membranes using circular dichroism spectroscopy, we determined that the polymer brush chemistry has an influence on the extent of secondary structure change of tethered peptides before and after interaction with biomembranes. The peptide structure also has an influence on the density

  9. Prediction of antimicrobial peptides based on sequence alignment and feature selection methods.

    PubMed

    Wang, Ping; Hu, Lele; Liu, Guiyou; Jiang, Nan; Chen, Xiaoyun; Xu, Jianyong; Zheng, Wen; Li, Li; Tan, Ming; Chen, Zugen; Song, Hui; Cai, Yu-Dong; Chou, Kuo-Chen

    2011-04-13

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) represent a class of natural peptides that form a part of the innate immune system, and this kind of 'nature's antibiotics' is quite promising for solving the problem of increasing antibiotic resistance. In view of this, it is highly desired to develop an effective computational method for accurately predicting novel AMPs because it can provide us with more candidates and useful insights for drug design. In this study, a new method for predicting AMPs was implemented by integrating the sequence alignment method and the feature selection method. It was observed that, the overall jackknife success rate by the new predictor on a newly constructed benchmark dataset was over 80.23%, and the Mathews correlation coefficient is 0.73, indicating a good prediction. Moreover, it is indicated by an in-depth feature analysis that the results are quite consistent with the previously known knowledge that some amino acids are preferential in AMPs and that these amino acids do play an important role for the antimicrobial activity. For the convenience of most experimental scientists who want to use the prediction method without the interest to follow the mathematical details, a user-friendly web-server is provided at http://amp.biosino.org/.

  10. Mode of action and membrane specificity of the antimicrobial peptide snakin-2

    PubMed Central

    Herbel, Vera

    2016-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are a diverse group of short, cationic peptides which are naturally occurring molecules in the first-line defense of most living organisms. They represent promising candidates for the treatment of pathogenic microorganisms. Snakin-2 (SN2) from tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) is stabilized through six intramolecular disulphide bridges; it shows broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity against bacteria and fungi, and it agglomerates single cells prior to killing. In this study, we further characterized SN2 by providing time-kill curves and corresponding growth inhibition analysis of model organisms, such as E. coli or B. subtilis. SN2 was produced recombinantly in E. coli with thioredoxin as fusion protein, which was removed after affinity purification by proteolytic digestion. Furthermore, the target specificity of SN2 was investigated by means of hemolysis and hemagglutination assays; its effect on plant cell membranes of isolated protoplasts was investigated by microscopy. SN2 shows a non-specific pore-forming effect in all tested membranes. We suggest that SN2 could be useful as a preservative agent to protect food, pharmaceuticals, or cosmetics from decomposition by microbes. PMID:27190708

  11. A plausible mode of action of pseudin-2, an antimicrobial peptide from Pseudis paradoxa.

    PubMed

    Park, Seong-Cheol; Kim, Jin-Young; Jeong, Chanyoung; Yoo, Suyeon; Hahm, Kyung-Soo; Park, Yoonkyung

    2011-01-01

    The search for new antibiotic agents is continuous, reflecting the continuous emergence of antibiotic-resistant pathogens. Among the new agents are the antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), which have the potential to become a leading alternative to conventional antibiotics. Studies for the mechanisms of action of the naturally occurring parent peptides can provide the structural and functional information needed for the development of effective new antibiotic agents. We therefore characterized pseudin-2, an AMP isolated from the skin of the South American paradoxical frog Pseudis paradoxa. We found that pseudin-2 organized to an aggregated state in aqueous solution, but that it dissociated into monomers upon binding to lipopolysaccharide (LPS), even though it did not neutralize LPS in Gram-negative bacteria. In addition, pseudin-2 assumed an α-helical structure in the presence of biological membranes and formed pores in both bacterial and fungal membranes, through which it entered the cytoplasm and tightly bound to RNA. Thus, the potent antimicrobial activity of pseudin-2 likely results from both the formation of pores capable of collapsing the membrane potential and releasing intracellular materials and its inhibition of macromolecule synthesis through its binding to RNA. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. A consistent nomenclature of antimicrobial peptides isolated from frogs of the subfamily Phyllomedusinae.

    PubMed

    Amiche, Mohamed; Ladram, Ali; Nicolas, Pierre

    2008-11-01

    A growing number of cationic antimicrobial peptides have been isolated from the skin of hylid frogs belonging to the Phyllomedusinae subfamily. The amino acid sequences of these peptides are currently located in several databases under identifiers with no consistent system of nomenclature to describe them. In order to provide a workable terminology for antimicrobial peptides from Phyllomedusid frogs, we have made a systematic effort to collect, analyze, and classify all the Phyllomedusid peptide sequences available in databases. We propose that frogs belonging to the Phyllomedusinae subfamily should be described by the species names set out in Amphibian Species of the World: http://research.amnh.org/herpetology/amphibia/index.php, American Museum of Natural History, New York, USA. Multiple alignments analysis of at least 80 antimicrobial peptides isolated from 12 Phyllomedusinae species were distributed in seven distinct peptide families including dermaseptin, phylloseptin, plasticin, dermatoxin, phylloxin, hyposin and orphan peptides, and will be considered as the name of the headgroup of each family. The parent peptide's name should be followed by the first upper letter of the species for orthologous peptides and publication date determines priority. For example, the abbreviation B for bicolor and H for hypochondrialis. When two species begin with the same letter, two letters in upper case should be used (the first letter followed by the second or the third letter and so on). For example, the abbreviation DI for distincta, DU for duellmani, VA for vaillanti and VN for vanzolinii. Paralogous peptides should bear letter(s) in upper case followed by numbers.

  13. Biosynthesis of the Polycyclic Antimicrobial Peptides Lacticin 481, Haloduracin, and Cinnamycin

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cooper, Lisa E.

    2009-01-01

    Lantibiotics are bacterial-derived polycyclic antimicrobial peptides. They are genetically encoded and ribosomally synthesized as precursor peptides containing a structural region that undergoes post-translational modification and a leader sequence that is not modified. Specific serine and threonine residues in the pre-lantibiotic structural…

  14. Biosynthesis of the Polycyclic Antimicrobial Peptides Lacticin 481, Haloduracin, and Cinnamycin

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cooper, Lisa E.

    2009-01-01

    Lantibiotics are bacterial-derived polycyclic antimicrobial peptides. They are genetically encoded and ribosomally synthesized as precursor peptides containing a structural region that undergoes post-translational modification and a leader sequence that is not modified. Specific serine and threonine residues in the pre-lantibiotic structural…

  15. Membrane-active Antimicrobial Peptides as Template Structures for Novel Antibiotic Agents.

    PubMed

    Lohner, Karl

    2017-01-01

    The increase of pathogens being resistant to antibiotics represents a global health problem and therefore it is a pressing need to develop antibiotics with novel mechanisms of action. Host defense peptides, which have direct antimicrobial activity (also termed antimicrobial peptides) or immune modulating activity, are valuable template structures for the development of such compounds. Antimicrobial peptides exhibit remarkably different structures as well as biological activity profiles with multiple targets. A large fraction of these peptides interfere physically with the cell membrane of bacteria (focus of this review), but can also translocate into the cytosol, where they interact with nucleic acids, ribosomes and proteins. Several potential interaction sites have to be considered on the route of the peptides from the environment to the cytoplasmic membrane. Translocation of peptides through the cell wall may not be impaired by the thick but relatively porous peptidoglycan layer. However, interaction with lipopolysaccharides of the outer membrane of Gram-negative bacteria and (lipo)teichoic acids of Gram-positive bacteria may reduce the effective concentration at the cytoplasmic membrane, where supposedly the killing event takes place. On a molecular level several mechanisms are discussed, which are important for the rational design of improved antimicrobial compounds: toroidal pore formation, carpet model (coverage of membrane surface by peptides), interfacial activity, void formation, clustering of lipids and effects of membrane curvature. In summary, many of these models just represent special cases that can be interrelated to each other and depend on both the nature of lipids and peptides.

  16. Rational Evolution of Antimicrobial Peptides Containing Unnatural Amino Acids to Combat Burn Wound Infections.

    PubMed

    Xiong, Meng; Chen, Ming; Zhang, Jue

    2016-09-01

    Antimicrobial peptides have long been raised as a promising strategy to combat bacterial infection in burn wounds. Here, we attempted to rationally design small antimicrobial peptides containing unnatural amino acids by integrating in silico analysis and in vitro assay. Predictive quantitative sequence-activity models were established and validated rigorously based on a large panel of nonamer antimicrobial peptides with known antibacterial activity. The best quantitative sequence-activity model predictor was employed to guide genetic evolution of a peptide population. In the evolution procedure, a number of unnatural amino acids with desired physicochemical properties were introduced, resulting in a genetic evolution-improved population, from which seven peptide candidates with top scores, containing 1-3 unnatural amino acids, and having diverse structures were successfully identified, and their antibacterial potencies against two antibiotic-resistant bacterial strains isolated from infected burn wounds were measured using in vitro susceptibility test. Consequently, four (WL-Orn-LARKIV-NH2 , ARKRWF-Dab-FL-NH2 , KFI-Hag-IWR-Orn-R-NH2 and YW-Hag-R-Cit-RF-Orn-N-NH2 ) of the seven tested peptides were found to be more potent than reference Bac2A, the smallest naturally occurring broad spectrum antimicrobial peptide. Molecular dynamics simulations revealed that the designed peptides can fold into amphipathic helical structure that allows them to interact directly with microbial membranes. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons A/S.

  17. Prokaryotic selectivity and LPS-neutralizing activity of short antimicrobial peptides designed from the human antimicrobial peptide LL-37.

    PubMed

    Nan, Yong Hai; Bang, Jeong-Kyu; Jacob, Binu; Park, Il-Seon; Shin, Song Yub

    2012-06-01

    To develop novel antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) with shorter lengths, improved prokaryotic selectivity and retained lipolysaccharide (LPS)-neutralizing activity compared to human cathelicidin AMP, LL-37, a series of amino acid-substituted analogs based on IG-19 (residues 13-31 of LL-37) were synthesized. Among the IG-19 analogs, the analog a4 showed the highest prokaryotic selectivity, but much lower LPS-neutralizing activity compared to parental LL-37. The analogs, a5, a6, a7 and a8 with higher hydrophobicity displayed LPS-neutralizing activity comparable to that of LL-37, but much lesser prokaryotic selectivity. These results indicate that the proper hydrophobicity of the peptides is crucial to exert the amalgamated property of LPS-neutralizing activity and prokaryotic selectivity. Furthermore, to increase LPS-neutralizing activity of the analog a4 without a remarkable decrease in prokaryotic selectivity, we synthesized Trp-substituted analogs (a4-W1 and a4-W2), in which Phe(5) or Phe(15) of a4 is replaced by Trp. Despite their same prokaryotic selectivity, a4-W2 displayed much higher LPS-neutralizing activity compared to a4-W1. When compared with parental LL-37, a4-W2 showed retained LPS-neutralizing activity and 2.8-fold enhanced prokaryotic selectivity. These results suggest that the effective site for Trp-substitution when designing novel AMPs with higher LPS-neutralizing activity, without a remarkable reduction in prokaryotic selectivity, is the amphipathic interface between the end of the hydrophilic side and the start of the hydrophobic side rather than the central position of the hydrophobic side in their α-helical wheel projection. Taken together, the analog a4-W2 can serve as a promising template for the development of therapeutic agents for the treatment of endotoxic shock and bacterial infection. Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  18. Trypanocidal and leishmanicidal activities of different antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) isolated from aquatic animals.

    PubMed

    Löfgren, S E; Miletti, L C; Steindel, M; Bachère, E; Barracco, M A

    2008-02-01

    Most of the available animal antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have been tested against bacteria and fungi, but very few against protozoan parasites. In the present study, we investigated the antiparasitic activity of different AMPs isolated from aquatic animals: tachyplesin (Tach, from Tachypleus tridentatus), magainin (Mag, from Xenopus laevis), clavanin (Clav, from Styela clava), penaeidin (Pen, from Litopenaeus vannamei), mytilin (Myt, from Mytilus edulis) and anti-lipopolysaccharide factor (ALF, from Penaeus monodon). The antiparasitic activity was evaluated against the promastigote form of Leishmania braziliensis and epi and trypomastigote forms of Trypanosoma cruzi, through the MTT method. Tach was the most potent peptide, killing completely L. braziliensis and trypomastigote T. cruzi from 12.5microM, whereas Pen and Clav were weakly active against trypomastigotes and Myt against L. braziliensis, only at a high concentration (100microM). Tach and Mag were markedly hemolytic at high concentrations, whereas the other peptides caused only a slight hemolysis (<10% up to 50microM). Our results point to Tach as the only potential candidate for further investigation and potential application as a therapeutic agent.

  19. Antimicrobial peptide scolopendrasin VII, derived from the centipede Scolopendra subspinipes mutilans, stimulates macrophage chemotaxis via formyl peptide receptor 1.

    PubMed

    Park, Yoo Jung; Lee, Ha Young; Jung, Young Su; Park, Joon Seong; Hwang, Jae Sam; Bae, Yoe-Sik

    2015-08-01

    In this study, we report that one of the antimicrobial peptides scolopendrasin VII, derived from Scolopendra subspinipes mutilans, stimulates actin polymerization and the subsequent chemotactic migration of macrophages through the activation of ERK and protein kinase B (Akt) activity. The scolopendrasin VII-induced chemotactic migration of macrophages is inhibited by the formyl peptide receptor 1 (FPR1) antagonist cyclosporine H. We also found that scolopendrasin VII stimulate the chemotactic migration of FPR1-transfected RBL-2H3 cells, but not that of vector-transfected cells; moreover, scolopendrasin VII directly binds to FPR1. Our findings therefore suggest that the antimicrobial peptide scolopendrasin VII, derived from Scolopendra subspinipes mutilans, stimulates macrophages, resulting in chemotactic migration via FPR1 signaling, and the peptide can be useful in the study of FPR1-related biological responses.

  20. Comparative Analysis of the Antimicrobial Activities of Plant Defensin-Like and Ultrashort Peptides against Food-Spoiling Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Kraszewska, Joanna; Beckett, Michael C.; James, Tharappel C.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Antimicrobial peptides offer potential as novel therapeutics to combat food spoilage and poisoning caused by pathogenic and nonpathogenic bacteria. Our previous studies identified the peptide human beta-defensin 3 (HBD3) as a potent antimicrobial agent against a wide range of beer-spoiling bacteria. Thus, HBD3 is an excellent candidate for development as an additive to prevent food and beverage spoilage. To expand the repertoire of peptides with antimicrobial activity against bacteria associated with food spoilage and/or food poisoning, we carried out an in silico discovery pipeline to identify peptides with structure and activity similar to those of HBD3, focusing on peptides of plant origin. Using a standardized assay, we compared the antimicrobial activities of nine defensin-like plant peptides to the activity of HBD3. Only two of the peptides, fabatin-2 and Cp-thionin-2, displayed antimicrobial activity; however, the peptides differed from HBD3 in being sensitive to salt and were thermostable. We also compared the activities of several ultrashort peptides to that of HBD3. One of the peptides, the synthetic tetrapeptide O3TR, displayed biphasic antimicrobial activity but had a narrower host range than HBD3. Finally, to determine if the peptides might act in concert to improve antimicrobial activity, we compared the activities of the peptides in pairwise combinations. The plant defensin-like peptides fabatin-2 and Cp-thionin-2 displayed a synergistic effect with HBD3, while O3TR was antagonistic. Thus, some plant defensin-like peptides are effective antimicrobials and may act in concert with HBD3 to control bacteria associated with food spoilage and food poisoning. IMPORTANCE Food spoilage and food poisoning caused by bacteria can have major health and economic implications for human society. With the rise in resistance to conventional antibiotics, there is a need to identify new antimicrobials to combat these outbreaks in our food supply. Here we

  1. Improved Bioactivity of Antimicrobial Peptides by Addition of Amino-Terminal Copper and Nickel (ATCUN) Binding Motifs

    PubMed Central

    Libardo, M. Daben; Cervantes, Jorge L.; Salazar, Juan C.; Angeles-Boza, Alfredo M.

    2015-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are promising candidates to help circumvent antibiotic resistance, which is an increasing clinical problem. Amino-terminal copper and nickel (ATCUN) binding motifs are known to actively form reactive oxygen species (ROS) upon metal binding. The combination of these two peptidic constructs could lead to a novel class of dual-acting antimicrobial agents. To test this hypothesis, a set of ATCUN binding motifs were screened for their ability to induce ROS formation, and the most potent were then used to modify AMPs with different modes of action. ATCUN binding motif-containing derivatives of anoplin (GLLKRIKTLL-NH2), pro-apoptotic peptide (PAP; KLAKLAKKLAKLAK-NH2), and sh-buforin (RAGLQFPVGRVHRLLRK-NH2) were synthesized and found to be more active than the parent AMPs against a panel of clinically relevant bacteria. The lower minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) values for the ATCUN-anoplin peptides are attributed to the higher pore-forming activity along with their ability to cause ROS-induced membrane damage. The addition of the ATCUN motifs to PAP also increases its ability to disrupt membranes. DNA damage is the major contributor to the activity of the ATCUN-sh-buforin peptides. Our findings indicate that the addition of ATCUN motifs to AMPs is a simple strategy that leads to AMPs with higher antibacterial activity and possibly to more potent, usable antibacterial agents. PMID:24803240

  2. Improved bioactivity of antimicrobial peptides by addition of amino-terminal copper and nickel (ATCUN) binding motifs.

    PubMed

    Libardo, M Daben; Cervantes, Jorge L; Salazar, Juan C; Angeles-Boza, Alfredo M

    2014-08-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are promising candidates to help circumvent antibiotic resistance, which is an increasing clinical problem. Amino-terminal copper and nickel (ATCUN) binding motifs are known to actively form reactive oxygen species (ROS) upon metal binding. The combination of these two peptidic constructs could lead to a novel class of dual-acting antimicrobial agents. To test this hypothesis, a set of ATCUN binding motifs were screened for their ability to induce ROS formation, and the most potent were then used to modify AMPs with different modes of action. ATCUN binding motif-containing derivatives of anoplin (GLLKRIKTLL-NH2), pro-apoptotic peptide (PAP; KLAKLAKKLAKLAK-NH2), and sh-buforin (RAGLQFPVGRVHRLLRK-NH2) were synthesized and found to be more active than the parent AMPs against a panel of clinically relevant bacteria. The lower minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) values for the ATCUN-anoplin peptides are attributed to the higher pore-forming activity along with their ability to cause ROS-induced membrane damage. The addition of the ATCUN motifs to PAP also increases its ability to disrupt membranes. DNA damage is the major contributor to the activity of the ATCUN-sh-buforin peptides. Our findings indicate that the addition of ATCUN motifs to AMPs is a simple strategy that leads to AMPs with higher antibacterial activity and possibly to more potent, usable antibacterial agents.

  3. Structure-activity relationships and action mechanisms of collagen-like antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Masuda, Ryo; Dazai, Yui; Mima, Takehiko; Koide, Takaki

    2017-01-01

    An antimicrobial triple-helical peptide, R3, was previously obtained from a collagen-like combinatorial peptide library. In this research, based on structure-activity relationship studies of R3, a more potent peptide, RR4, with increased positive net charge and charge density relative to R3, was developed. RR4 exhibited antimicrobial activity against both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacterial strains, including multidrug-resistant strains. Its action could be attributed to entry into cells and interactions with intercellular molecules such as DNA/RNA that inhibited cell division rather than increasing bacterial membrane permeability. Furthermore, RR4 exhibited remarkable stability in serum and low cytotoxicity.

  4. Contribution of Amphipathicity and Hydrophobicity to the Antimicrobial Activity and Cytotoxicity of β-Hairpin Peptides

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Bacteria have acquired extensive resistance mechanisms to protect themselves against antibiotic action. Today the bacterial membrane has become one of the “final frontiers” in the search for new compounds acting on novel targets to address the threat of multi-drug resistant (MDR) and XDR bacterial pathogens. β-Hairpin antimicrobial peptides are amphipathic, membrane-binding antibiotics that exhibit a broad range of activities against Gram-positive, Gram-negative, and fungal pathogens. However, most members of the class also possess adverse cytotoxicity and hemolytic activity that preclude their development as candidate antimicrobials. We examined peptide hydrophobicity, amphipathicity, and structure to better dissect and understand the correlation between antimicrobial activity and toxicity, membrane binding, and membrane permeability. The hydrophobicity, pI, net charge at physiological pH, and amphipathic moment for the β-hairpin antimicrobial peptides tachyplesin-1, polyphemusin-1, protegrin-1, gomesin, arenicin-3, and thanatin were determined and correlated with key antimicrobial activity and toxicity data. These included antimicrobial activity against five key bacterial pathogens and two fungi, cytotoxicity against human cell lines, and hemolytic activity in human erythrocytes. Observed antimicrobial activity trends correlated with compound amphipathicity and, to a lesser extent, with overall hydrophobicity. Antimicrobial activity increased with amphipathicity, but unfortunately so did toxicity. Of note, tachyplesin-1 was found to be 8-fold more amphipathic than gomesin. These analyses identify tachyplesin-1 as a promising scaffold for rational design and synthetic optimization toward an antibiotic candidate. PMID:27331141

  5. Prokaryotic expression and antimicrobial mechanism of XPF-St7-derived α-helical peptides.

    PubMed

    Yi, Tonghui; Huang, Yibing; Chen, Yuxin

    2015-01-01

    XPF-St7 (GLLSNVAGLLKQFAKGGVNAVLNPK) is an antimicrobial peptide isolated from Silurana tropicalis. We developed an α-helical segment of XPF-St7 termed as XPF2. Using the XPF2 as a framework, we increased the positive net charge of XPF2 by amino acid substitutions, and thus obtained two novel antimicrobial peptides XPF4 and XPF6. These were each fused with an ubiquitin tag and successfully expressed in Escherichia coli. This ubiquitin fusion system may present a viable alternative for industrial production of antimicrobial peptides. XPF4 and XPF6 showed much better overall antimicrobial activity against both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria than XPF2. The therapeutic index of XPF4 and XPF6 was 5.6-fold and 6.7-fold of XPF2, respectively. Bacterial cell membrane permeabilization and genomic DNA interaction assays were utilized to explore the mechanism of action of XPF serial peptides. The results revealed that the target of these antimicrobial peptides was the bacterial cytoplasmic membrane. Copyright © 2014 European Peptide Society and John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  6. Antimicrobial Peptides Targeting Gram-negative Pathogens, Produced and Delivered by Lactic Acid Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Volzing, Katherine; Borrero, Juan; Sadowsky, Michael J.; Kaznessis, Yiannis N.

    2014-01-01

    We present results of tests with recombinant Lactococcus lactis that produce and secrete heterologous antimicrobial peptides with activity against Gram-negative pathogenic Escherichia coli and Salmonella. In an initial screening, the activities of numerous candidate antimicrobial peptides, made by solid state synthesis, were assessed against several indicator pathogenic E. coli and Salmonella strains. Peptides A3APO and Alyteserin were selected as top performers based on high antimicrobial activity against the pathogens tested and on significantly lower antimicrobial activity against L. lactis. Expression cassettes containing the signal peptide of the protein Usp45 fused to the codon optimized sequence of mature A3APO and Alyteserin were cloned under the control of a nisin-inducible promoter nisA and transformed into L. lactis IL1403. The resulting recombinant strains were induced to express and secrete both peptides. A3APO- and Alyteserin-containing supernatants from these recombinant L. lactis inhibited the growth of pathogenic E. coli and Salmonella by up to 20-fold, while maintaining the host’s viability. This system may serve as a model for the production and delivery of antimicrobial peptides by lactic acid bacteria to target Gram-negative pathogenic bacteria populations. PMID:23808914

  7. Characterization of a novel antimicrobial peptide with chitin-biding domain from Mytilus coruscus.

    PubMed

    Qin, Chuan-li; Huang, Wei; Zhou, Shi-quan; Wang, Xin-chao; Liu, Hui-hui; Fan, Mei-hua; Wang, Ri-xin; Gao, Peng; Liao, Zhi

    2014-12-01

    Using reverse phase high performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC), a novel antimicrobial peptide with 55 amino acid residues was isolated from the hemolymph of Mytilus coruscus. This new antimicrobial peptide displays predominant antimicrobial activity against fungi and Gram-positive bacteria. The molecular mass and the N-terminal sequence of this peptide were analyzed by Mass Spectrometry and Edman degradation, respectively. This antimicrobial peptide, with molecular mass of 6621.55 Da, is characterized by a chitin-biding domain and by 6 Cysteine residues engaged in three intra-molecular disulfide bridges. The full-length of cDNA sequence of this new peptide was obtained by rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) and the encoded precursor was turn out to be a chitotriosidase-like protein. Therefore, we named the precursor with mytichitin-1 and the new antimicrobial peptide (designated as mytichitin-CB) is the carboxyl-terminal part of mytichitin-1. The mRNA transcripts of mytichitin-1 are mainly detected in gonad and the expression level of mytichitin-1 in gonad was up-regulated and reached the highest level at 12 h after bacterial challenge, which was 9-fold increase compared to that of the control group. These results indicated that mytichitin-1 was involved in the host immune response against bacterial infection and might contribute to the clearance of invading bacteria.

  8. Dynamical and phase behavior of a phospholipid membrane altered by an antimicrobial peptide at low concentration

    DOE PAGES

    Mamontov, Eugene; Tyagi, M.; Qian, Shuo; ...

    2016-05-27

    Here we discuss that the mechanism of action of antimicrobial peptides is traditionally attributed to the formation of pores in the lipid cell membranes of pathogens, which requires a substantial peptide to lipid ratio. However, using incoherent neutron scattering, we show that even at a concentration too low for pore formation, an archetypal antimicrobial peptide, melittin, disrupts the regular phase behavior of the microscopic dynamics in a phospholipid membrane, dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine (DMPC). At the same time, another antimicrobial peptide, alamethicin, does not exert a similar effect on the DMPC microscopic dynamics. The melittin-altered lateral motion of DMPC at physiological temperature nomore » longer resembles the fluid-phase behavior characteristic of functional membranes of the living cells. The disruptive effect demonstrated by melittin even at low concentrations reveals a new mechanism of antimicrobial action relevant in more realistic scenarios, when peptide concentration is not as high as would be required for pore formation, which may facilitate treatment with antimicrobial peptides.« less

  9. Cellular Membrane Composition Requirement by Antimicrobial and Anticancer Peptide GA-K4.

    PubMed

    Mishig-Ochir, Tsogbadrakh; Gombosuren, Davaadulam; Jigjid, Altanchimeg; Tuguldur, Badamkhatan; Chuluunbaatar, Galbadrakh; Urnukhsaikhan, Enerelt; Pathak, Chinar; Lee, Bong-Jin

    2017-01-01

    Naturally occurring antimicrobial peptides important for innate immunity are widely studied for their antimicrobial and anticancer activity. The primary target of these AMPs is believed to be the bacterial cytoplasmic membrane. However, the interaction between cytoplasmic membrane and the antimicrobial peptides remains poorly understood. Therefore to focus on the target membrane composition that is required by AMPs to interact with membranes, we have examined the interaction of the antimicrobial and anticancer active 11-residue GA-K4 (FLKWLFKWAKK) peptide with model and intact cell membranes. Effect on the structural conformational properties of GA-K4 peptide was investigated by means of far-UV CD and fluorescence spectroscopic methods. The different conformation of GA-K4 peptide in large unilamellar vesicles (LUV) bilayer and micelle environment suggest that the curvature has an influence on the secondary structure acquired by the peptide. Furthermore, the leakage experiment result confirmed that GA-K4 induced the leakage of cytoplasmic membrane in Staphylococcus аureus bacterial cells. Fluorescence data revealed the interfacial location of GA-K4 peptide in the model membranes. The blue-shift in emission wavelength by tryptophan residues in fluorescence data indicated the penetration of GA-K4 peptide in micelles and phospholipid bilayers. These results showed that the GA-K4 peptide is a membrane-active peptide and its activity depends on membrane curvature and lipid composition. Although further studies are required to confirm the mechanism of action, the data suggest mechanism of toroidal pore formation for the interaction of GA-K4 peptide with membranes. Our studies will be helpful in better understanding of the membrane requirment of peptides to express their therapeutic effects. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  10. [Antimicrobial properties of bee preparations in ointment form].

    PubMed

    Postoienko, V O; Senchuhova, N A; Postoienko, O M; Patyka, V P

    2004-01-01

    High antimicrobial activity apiphytopreparation in the form of the ointments containing pine turpentine, different concentration of propolis (from 4 to 20 %), honey and carotene oil from carrots (ointment N 4) has been. While testing by the method of diffusion in agar all the studied apiphytopreparation suppressed growth of Staphylococcus aureus, Bacillus subtilis, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Micrococcus luteus, M. roseus. This effect increased with propolis content increase in the content of ointments. Bee honey and carotene oil intensified their antimicrobial activity. The latter was caused by the action of phenolic compounds, ether oils and other biologically active substances--the apiculture and vegetative raw material.

  11. Antimicrobial activity of the scolopendrasin V peptide identified from the centipede, Scolopendra subspinipes mutilans.

    PubMed

    Lee, Joon Ha; Kim, In-Woo; Kim, Mi-Ae; Ahn, Mi-Young; Yun, Eun-Young; Hwang, Jae Sam

    2016-10-25

    In a previous study, we analyzed the transcriptome of Scolopendra subspinipes mutilans using next generation sequencing technology and identified several antimicrobial peptide candidates. One of peptides, scolopendrasin V, was selected based on the physicochemical properties of antimicrobial peptides using a bioinformatics strategy. In this study, we assessed the antimicrobial activities of scolopendrasin V by using radial diffusion assay and colony count assay. We also investigated the mode of action of scolopendrasin V using flow cytometry. We found that scolopendrasin V's mechanism of action involved binding to the surface of microorganisms via a specific interaction with lipopolysaccharides, lipoteichoic acid, and peptidoglycans, which are components of the bacterial membrane. These results provide a basis for developing peptide antibiotics.

  12. Enhanced stability and activity of an antimicrobial peptide in conjugation with silver nanoparticle.

    PubMed

    Pal, Indrani; Brahmkhatri, Varsha P; Bera, Swapna; Bhattacharyya, Dipita; Quirishi, Yasrib; Bhunia, Anirban; Atreya, Hanudatta S

    2016-12-01

    The conjugation of nanoparticles with antimicrobial peptides (AMP) is emerging as a promising route to achieve superior antimicrobial activity. However, the nature of peptide-nanoparticle interactions in these systems remains unclear. This study describes a system consisting of a cysteine containing antimicrobial peptide conjugated with silver nanoparticles, in which the two components exhibit a dynamic interaction resulting in a significantly enhanced stability and biological activity compared to that of the individual components. This was investigated using NMR spectroscopy in conjunction with other biophysical techniques. Using fluorescence assisted cell sorting and membrane mimics we carried out a quantitative comparison of the activity of the AMP-nanoparticle system and the free peptide. Taken together, the study provides new insights into nanoparticle-AMP interactions at a molecular level and brings out the factors that will be useful for consideration while designing new conjugates with enhanced functionality. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. The emerging role of peptides and lipids as antimicrobial epidermal barriers and modulators of local inflammation

    PubMed Central

    Brogden, N.K.; Mehalick, L.; Fischer, C.L.; Wertz, P.W.; Brogden, K.A.

    2012-01-01

    Skin is complex and comprised of distinct layers, each layer with unique architecture and immunologic functions. Cells within these layers produce differing amounts of antimicrobial peptides and lipids (sphingoid bases and sebaceous fatty acids) that limit colonization of commensal and opportunistic microorganisms. Furthermore, antimicrobial peptides and lipids have distinct, concentration-dependent ancillary innate and adaptive immune functions. At 0.1-2.0 μM, antimicrobial peptides induce cell migration and adaptive immune responses to co-administered antigens. At 2.0-6.0 μM, they induce cell proliferation and enhance wound healing. At 6.0-12.0 μM, antimicrobial peptides can regulate chemokine and cytokine production and at their highest concentrations of 15.0-30.0 μM, antimicrobial peptides can be cytotoxic. At 1-100 nM, lipids enhance cell migration induced by chemokines, suppress apoptosis, and optimize T cell cytotoxicity and at 0.3-1.0 μM, they inhibit cell migration and attenuate chemokine and pro-inflammatory cytokine responses. Recently many antimicrobial peptides and lipids at 0.1-2.0 μM have been found to attenuate the production of chemokines and pro-inflammatory cytokines to microbial antigens. Together, both the antimicrobial and the anti-inflammatory activities of these peptides and lipids may serve to create a strong, overlapping immunologic barrier that not only controls the concentrations of cutaneous commensal flora but also the extent to which they induce a localized inflammatory response. PMID:22538862

  14. In Silico Template Selection of Short Antimicrobial Peptide Viscotoxin for Improving Its Antimicrobial Efficiency in Development of Potential Therapeutic Drugs.

    PubMed

    Senthilkumar, B; Rajasekaran, R

    2017-03-01

    Rapid increase in antibiotic resistance has posed a worldwide threat, due to increased mortality, morbidity, and expenditure caused by antibiotic-resistant microbes. Recent development of the antimicrobial peptides like viscotoxin (Vt) has been successfully comprehended as a substitute for classical antibiotics. A structurally stable peptide, Vt can enhance antimicrobial property and can be used for various developmental purposes. Thus, structural stability among the antimicrobial peptides, Vt A1 (3C8P), A2 (1JMN), A3 (1ED0), B (1JMP), and C (1ORL) of Viscus album was computationally analyzed. In specific, the static confirmation of VtA3 showed high number of intramolecular interactions, along with an increase in hydrophobicity than others comparatively. Further, conformational sampling was used to analyze various geometrical parameters such as root mean square deviation, root mean square fluctuation, radius of gyration, and ovality which also revealed the structural stability of VtA3. Moreover, the statistically validated contours of surface area, lipophilicity, and distance constraints of disulfide bonds also supported the priority of VtA3 with respect to stability. Finally, the functional activity of peptides was accessed by computing their free energy of membrane association and membrane interactions, which defined VtA3 as functionally stable. Currently, peptide-based antibiotics and nanoparticles have attracted the pharmaceutical industries for their potential therapeutic applications. Thereby, it is proposed that viscotoxin A3 (1ED0) could be used as a preeminent template for scaffolding potentially efficient antimicrobial peptide-based drugs and nanomaterials in future.

  15. Enabling the Discovery and Virtual Screening of Potent and Safe Antimicrobial Peptides. Simultaneous Prediction of Antibacterial Activity and Cytotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Kleandrova, Valeria V; Ruso, Juan M; Speck-Planche, Alejandro; Dias Soeiro Cordeiro, M Natália

    2016-08-08

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) represent promising alternatives to fight against bacterial pathogens. However, cellular toxicity remains one of the main concerns in the early development of peptide-based drugs. This work introduces the first multitasking (mtk) computational model focused on performing simultaneous predictions of antibacterial activities, and cytotoxicities of peptides. The model was created from a data set containing 3592 cases, and it displayed accuracy higher than 96% for classifying/predicting peptides in both training and prediction (test) sets. The technique known as alanine scanning was computationally applied to illustrate the calculation of the quantitative contributions of the amino acids (in their respective positions of the sequence) to the biological effects of a defined peptide. A small library formed by 10 peptides was generated, where peptides were designed by considering the interpretations of the different descriptors in the mtk-computational model. All the peptides were predicted to exhibit high antibacterial activities against multiple bacterial strains, and low cytotoxicity against various cell types. The present mtk-computational model can be considered a very useful tool to support high throughput research for the discovery of potent and safe AMPs.

  16. Using Infrared Spectroscopy of Cyanylated Cysteine to Map Membrane Binding Structure and Orientation of the Hybrid Antimicrobial Peptide CM15

    PubMed Central

    Alfieri, Katherine N.; Vienneau, Alice R.; Londergan, Casey H.

    2011-01-01

    The synthetic antimicrobial peptide CM15, a hybrid of N-terminal sequences from cecropin and melittin peptides, has been shown to be extremely potent. Its mechanism of action has been speculated to involve pore formation based on prior site-directed spin labeling studies. This study examines four single-site β-thiocyanatoalanine variants of CM15 in which the artificial amino acid side chain acts as a vibrational reporter of its local environment through the frequency and lineshape of the unique CN stretching band in the infrared spectrum. Circular dichroism experiments indicate that the placements of the artificial side chain have only small perturbative effects on the membrane-bound secondary structure of the CM15 peptide. All variant peptides were placed in buffer solution, in contact with dodecylphosphatidylcholine micelles, and in contact with vesicles formed from E. coli polar lipid extract. At each site, the CN stretching band reports a different behavior. Time-dependent attenuated total reflectance infrared spectra were also collected for each variant as it was allowed to remodel the E. coli lipid vesicles. These experiments agree with the previously proposed formation of toroidal pores, in which each peptide finds itself in an increasingly homogeneous and curved local environment without apparent peptide-peptide interactions. This work also demonstrates the excellent sensitivity of the SCN stretching vibration to small changes in peptide-lipid interfacial structure. PMID:22103476

  17. Differential binding of L- vs. D-isomers of cationic antimicrobial peptides to the biofilm exopolysaccharide alginate.

    PubMed

    Yin, Lois M; Lee, Soyoung; Mak, Jacky S W; Helmy, Amr S; Deber, Charles M

    2013-08-01

    Alginate is a biofilm exopolysaccharide secreted by the opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa that acts to prevent the diffusion of antibiotics toward the bacterial cell membrane. Cationic antimicrobial peptides (CAPs) have been increasingly recognized as a viable alternative for prospective antimicrobial agents. The D-isomer chiral counterparts of active L-isomer CAPs tend to show slightly greater antimicrobial activities because bacteria lack proteases to hydrolyze the unnatural D-isomers. Using an enantiomeric pair of synthetic CAPs designed in our laboratory (L-4Leu in the sequence KKKKKKALFALWLAFLA-NH2 and its D-analog D-4Leu), we studied the binding and interactions of Lvs. D-isomers of CAPs with alginate using circular dichroism and Raman spectroscopic techniques. We found that the peptide D-4Leu underwent a more rapid structural transition over time from an initial alginate-induced α-helical conformation to a less soluble β-sheet conformation than L-4Leu, indicating that the D-isomer of this peptide has a relatively greater affinity for alginate. Through Raman spectroscopy it was observed that Raman modes at 1297 cm-1 and 1453 cm-1 wavenumbers were found to differ between the spectra obtained from the insoluble complexes formed between L-4Leu vs. D-4Leu and alginate. These modes were tentatively assigned to CH, and CH3 deformation modes, respectively. Our findings reveal previously undetected subtleties in the binding of this diastereomeric pair of peptides in the microenvironment of a biofilm exopolysaccharide, and provide guidelines for future development of antimicrobial peptides.

  18. Antimicrobial peptide control of pathogenic microorganisms of the oral cavity: a review of the literature.

    PubMed

    da Silva, Bruno Rocha; de Freitas, Victor Aragão Abreu; Nascimento-Neto, Luiz Gonzaga; Carneiro, Victor Alves; Arruda, Francisco Vassiliepe Sousa; de Aguiar, Andréa Silvia Walter; Cavada, Benildo Sousa; Teixeira, Edson Holanda

    2012-08-01

    Antimicrobial peptides, molecules produced in many different organisms, have high biocidal activity against several microorganisms. However, several questions about these molecules remain unclear. Therefore, this report details a systematic survey of the literature on the use of antimicrobial peptides against oral pathogens and indicates which peptides and microorganisms are most extensively studied. Articles were located using the PubMed and Science Direct databases with the following inclusion criteria: publication date between 2002 and 2011; keywords "biofilm OR biological film OR biological layer OR bacterial growth" AND "peptide" AND "oral cavity OR mouth OR buccal mucosa OR oral mucosa OR mouth mucosa"; and abstract in English. A total of 73 articles were selected after refinement of the data. An increase in publications focusing on the use of antimicrobial peptides against oral microorganisms was observed. In addition, the peptides produced by cells of the oral mucosa (defensins, LL-37 and histatins) as well as Streptococcus mutans (among cariogenic bacteria) and Porphyromonas gingivalis (among periodontal bacteria) were the most studied subjects. It was concluded that the use of antimicrobial peptides as a tool for microbial control is of increasing importance, likely due to its widespread use, mechanism of action, and low rates of bacterial resistance.

  19. A lesson from Bombinins H, mildly cationic diastereomeric antimicrobial peptides from Bombina skin.

    PubMed

    Mangoni, Maria Luisa

    2013-12-01

    Gene-encoded peptide antibiotics represent fascinating molecules for the development of new antimicrobials with a new mode of action: and one of the richest sources is amphibian skin. In particular, the skin of the fire-bellied toad Bombina genus contains mildly cationic antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), named bombinins H, with attractive properties. Indeed, some members of this peptide family coexist in skin secretions as isomers in which a single D-amino acid (alloisoleucine or leucine) is incorporated as a result of a post-translational modification of the respective gene-encoded Lamino acid. Here, a brief overview of the genes coding for these peptides, their spectrum of antimicrobial activities, mechanism of action and interactions with biological or model membranes is reported. Remarkably, a single D-amino acid substitution represents a unique approach developed by Nature not only to modulate the peptide stability in vivo, but also to confer the all-L peptide and its diastereomer distinctive biological features. Overall, such findings should assist in the generation of new peptide-based anti-infective agents, which are urgently needed because of the growing emergence of microbial strains resistant to conventional antimicrobials.

  20. An anti-infective synthetic peptide with dual antimicrobial and immunomodulatory activities

    PubMed Central

    Silva, O. N.; de la Fuente-Núñez, C.; Haney, E. F.; Fensterseifer, I. C. M.; Ribeiro, S. M.; Porto, W. F.; Brown, P.; Faria-Junior, C.; Rezende, T. M. B.; Moreno, S. E.; Lu, T. K.; Hancock, R. E. W.; Franco, O. L.

    2016-01-01

    Antibiotic-resistant infections are predicted to kill 10 million people per year by 2050, costing the global economy $100 trillion. Therefore, there is an urgent need to develop alternative technologies. We have engineered a synthetic peptide called clavanin-MO, derived from a marine tunicate antimicrobial peptide, which exhibits potent antimicrobial and immunomodulatory properties both in vitro and in vivo. The peptide effectively killed a panel of representative bacterial strains, including multidrug-resistant hospital isolates. Antimicrobial activity of the peptide was demonstrated in animal models, reducing bacterial counts by six orders of magnitude, and contributing to infection clearance. In addition, clavanin-MO was capable of modulating innate immunity by stimulating leukocyte recruitment to the site of infection, and production of immune mediators GM-CSF, IFN-γ and MCP-1, while suppressing an excessive and potentially harmful inflammatory response by increasing synthesis of anti-inflammatory cytokines such as IL-10 and repressing the levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-12 and TNF-α. Finally, treatment with the peptide protected mice against otherwise lethal infections caused by both Gram-negative and -positive drug-resistant strains. The peptide presented here directly kills bacteria and further helps resolve infections through its immune modulatory properties. Peptide anti-infective therapeutics with combined antimicrobial and immunomodulatory properties represent a new approach to treat antibiotic-resistant infections. PMID:27804992

  1. Synthetic molecular evolution of pore-forming peptides by iterative combinatorial library screening.

    PubMed

    Krauson, Aram J; He, Jing; Wimley, Andrew W; Hoffmann, Andrew R; Wimley, William C

    2013-04-19

    We previously reported the de novo design of a combinatorial peptide library that was subjected to high-throughput screening to identify membrane-permeabilizing antimicrobial peptides that have β-sheet-like secondary structure. Those peptides do not form discrete pores in membranes but instead partition into membrane interfaces and cause transient permeabilization by membrane disruption, but only when present at high concentration. In this work, we used a consensus sequence from that initial screen as a template to design an iterative, second generation library. In the 24-26-residue, 16,200-member second generation library we varied six residues. Two diad repeat motifs of alternating polar and nonpolar amino acids were preserved to maintain a propensity for non-helical secondary structure. We used a new high-throughput assay to identify members that self-assemble into equilibrium pores in synthetic lipid bilayers. This screen was done at a very stringent peptide to lipid ratio of 1:1000 where most known membrane-permeabilizing peptides, including the template peptide, are not active. In a screen of 10,000 library members we identified 16 (~0.2%) that are equilibrium pore-formers at this high stringency. These rare and highly active peptides, which share a common sequence motif, are as potent as the most active pore-forming peptides known. Furthermore, they are not α-helical, which makes them unusual, as most of the highly potent pore-forming peptides are amphipathic α-helices. Here we demonstrate that this synthetic molecular evolution-based approach, taken together with the new high-throughput tools we have developed, enables the identification, refinement, and optimization of unique membrane active peptides.

  2. Antimicrobial peptide exposure selects for Staphylococcus aureus resistance to human defence peptides

    PubMed Central

    Kubicek-Sutherland, Jessica Z.; Lofton, Hava; Vestergaard, Martin; Hjort, Karin; Ingmer, Hanne; Andersson, Dan I.

    2017-01-01

    Background The clinical development of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) is currently under evaluation to combat the rapid increase in MDR bacterial pathogens. However, many AMPs closely resemble components of the human innate immune system and the ramifications of prolonged bacterial exposure to AMPs are not fully understood. Objectives We show that in vitro serial passage of a clinical USA300 MRSA strain in a host-mimicking environment containing host-derived AMPs results in the selection of stable AMP resistance. Methods Serial passage experiments were conducted using steadily increasing concentrations of LL-37, PR-39 or wheat germ histones. WGS and proteomic analysis by MS were used to identify the molecular mechanism associated with increased tolerance of AMPs. AMP-resistant mutants were characterized by measuring in vitro fitness, AMP and antibiotic susceptibility, and virulence in a mouse model of sepsis. Results AMP-resistant Staphylococcus aureus mutants often displayed little to no fitness cost and caused invasive disease in mice. Further, this phenotype coincided with diminished susceptibility to both clinically prescribed antibiotics and human defence peptides. Conclusions These findings suggest that therapeutic use of AMPs could select for virulent mutants with cross-resistance to human innate immunity as well as antibiotic therapy. Thus, therapeutic use of AMPs and the implications of cross-resistance need to be carefully monitored and evaluated. PMID:27650186

  3. Development of Antimicrobial Peptide Prediction Tool for Aquaculture Industries.

    PubMed

    Gautam, Aditi; Sharma, Asuda; Jaiswal, Sarika; Fatma, Samar; Arora, Vasu; Iquebal, M A; Nandi, S; Sundaray, J K; Jayasankar, P; Rai, Anil; Kumar, Dinesh

    2016-09-01

    Microbial diseases in fish, plant, animal and human are rising constantly; thus, discovery of their antidote is imperative. The use of antibiotic in aquaculture further compounds the problem by development of resistance and consequent consumer health risk by bio-magnification. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have been highly promising as natural alternative to chemical antibiotics. Though AMPs are molecules of innate immune defense of all advance eukaryotic organisms, fish being heavily dependent on their innate immune defense has been a good source of AMPs with much wider applicability. Machine learning-based prediction method using wet laboratory-validated fish AMP can accelerate the AMP discovery using available fish genomic and proteomic data. Earlier AMP prediction servers are based on multi-phyla/species data, and we report here the world's first AMP prediction server in fishes. It is freely accessible at http://webapp.cabgrid.res.in/fishamp/ . A total of 151 AMPs related to fish collected from various databases and published literature were taken for this study. For model development and prediction, N-terminus residues, C-terminus residues and full sequences were considered. Best models were with kernels polynomial-2, linear and radial basis function with accuracy of 97, 99 and 97 %, respectively. We found that performance of support vector machine-based models is superior to artificial neural network. This in silico approach can drastically reduce the time and cost of AMP discovery. This accelerated discovery of lead AMP molecules having potential wider applications in diverse area like fish and human health as substitute of antibiotics, immunomodulator, antitumor, vaccine adjuvant and inactivator, and also for packaged food can be of much importance for industries.

  4. Properties of cytotoxic peptide-formed ion channels.

    PubMed

    Kourie, J I; Shorthouse, A A

    2000-06-01

    Cytotoxic peptides are relatively small cationic molecules such as those found 1) in venoms, e.g., melittin in bee, scorpion toxins in scorpion, pilosulin 1 in jumper ant, and lycotoxin I and II in wolf spider; 2) in skin secretions (e.g., magainin I and II from Xenopus laevis, dermaseptin from frog, antimicrobials from carp) and cells of the immune system (e.g., insect, scorpion, and mammalian defensins and cryptdins); 3) as autocytotoxicity peptides, e.g., amylin cytotoxic to pancreatic beta-cells, prion peptide fragment 106-126 [PrP-(106-126)], and amyloid beta-protein (AbetaP) cytotoxic to neurons; and 4) as designed synthetic peptides based on the sequences and properties of naturally occurring cytotoxic peptides. The small cytotoxic peptides are composed of beta-sheets, e.g., mammalian defensins, AbetaP, amylin, and PrP-(106-126), whereas the larger cytotoxic peptides have several domains composed of both alpha-helices and beta-sheets stabilized by cysteine bonds, e.g., scorpion toxins, scorpion, and insect defensins. Electrophysiological and molecular biology techniques indicate that these structures modify cell membranes via 1) interaction with intrinsic ion transport proteins and/or 2) formation of ion channels. These two nonexclusive mechanisms of action lead to changes in second messenger systems that further augment the abnormal electrical activity and distortion of the signal transduction causing cell death.

  5. On the role of NMR spectroscopy for characterization of antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Porcelli, Fernando; Ramamoorthy, Ayyalusamy; Barany, George; Veglia, Gianluigi

    2013-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) provide a primordial source of immunity, conferring upon eukaryotic cells resistance against bacteria, protozoa, and viruses. Despite a few examples of anionic peptides, AMPs are usually relatively short positively charged polypeptides, consisting of a dozen to about a hundred amino acids, and exhibiting amphipathic character. Despite significant differences in their primary and secondary structures, all AMPs discovered to date share the ability to interact with cellular membranes, thereby affecting bilayer stability, disrupting membrane organization, and/or forming well-defined pores. AMPs selectively target infectious agents without being susceptible to any of the common pathways by which these acquire resistance, thereby making AMPs prime candidates to provide therapeutic alternatives to conventional drugs. However, the mechanisms of AMP actions are still a matter of intense debate. The structure-function paradigm suggests that a better understanding of how AMPs elicit their biological functions could result from atomic resolution studies of peptide-lipid interactions. In contrast, more strict thermodynamic views preclude any roles for three-dimensional structures. Indeed, the design of selective AMPs based solely on structural parameters has been challenging. In this chapter, we will focus on selected AMPs for which studies on the corresponding AMP-lipid interactions have helped reach an understanding of how AMP effects are mediated. We will emphasize the roles of both liquid- and solid-state NMR spectroscopy for elucidating the mechanisms of action of AMPs.

  6. Investigation of the cytotoxicity of eukaryotic and prokaryotic antimicrobial peptides in intestinal epithelial cells in vitro.

    PubMed

    Maher, Sam; McClean, Siobhán

    2006-04-28

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are a diverse group of proteinaceous compounds ranging in size, complexity and antimicrobial spectrum. The activity of AMPs against gut pathogens warrants the study of the interaction of AMPs with the mammalian gastrointestinal tract. In particular, the investigation of the in vitro cytotoxicity of these peptides is critical before they can be considered in clinical infections. The cytotoxicity of gallidermin, nisin A, natural magainin peptides, and melittin was investigated in two gastrointestinal cell models (HT29 and Caco-2) with the MTT conversion assay, neutral red dye uptake assay and compared with that of vancomycin. The hemolytic activities were also investigated in sheep erythrocytes and the effect of AMPs on paracellular permeability was examined by transepithelial resistance (TEER) and TEM. Gallidermin was the least cytotoxic AMP followed by nisin A, magainin I, magainin II and melittin. Melittin and nisin were the only peptides to result in significant hemolysis. However, while nisin caused hemolysis at concentrations which were 1000-fold higher than those required for antimicrobial activity, melittin was hemolytic at concentrations in the same order of magnitude as its antimicrobial activity. Melittin was the only AMP to affect paracellular permeability. Long term melittin treatment also resulted in loss of microvilli, an increase in cell debris and destruction of intestinal tight junctions and cell-cell adhesion. Gallidermin shows most promise as a therapeutic agent, with relatively low cytotoxicity and potent antimicrobial activities. Melittin, while showing little potential as an antimicrobial agent, may have potential in delivery of poorly bioavailable drugs.

  7. Collagen tethering of synthetic human antimicrobial peptides cathelicidin LL37 and its effects on antimicrobial activity and cytotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Lozeau, Lindsay D; Grosha, Jonian; Kole, Denis; Prifti, Fioleda; Dominko, Tanja; Camesano, Terri A; Rolle, Marsha W

    2017-04-01

    Wound infections, particularly of chronic wounds, pose a substantial challenge for designing antimicrobial dressings that are both effective against pathogens, and do not interfere with wound healing. Due to their broad-spectrum antimicrobial and immunomodulatory activities, naturally-occurring antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are promising alternative treatments. However, their cytotoxicity at high concentrations and poor stability hinders their clinical use. To mitigate these undesirable properties, we investigated the effects of tethering human AMP cathelicidin LL37 to collagen, one of the main extracellular matrix proteins in wound sites, secreted by fibroblasts, and in commercially-available wound dressings. The active domain of human AMP cathelicidin, LL37, and two chimeric peptides containing LL37 fused to collagen binding domains (derived from collagenase - cCBD-LL37 or fibronectin - fCBD-LL37) were synthesized and adsorbed to PURACOL® type I collagen scaffolds. After 14days, 73%, 81% and 99% of LL37, cCBD-LL37 and fCBD-LL37, respectively, was retained on the scaffolds and demonstrated undiminished antimicrobial activity when challenged with both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacterial strains. Loaded scaffolds were not cytotoxic to fibroblasts despite retaining peptides at concentrations 24 times higher than the reported cytotoxic concentrations in solution. These findings indicate that biopolymer-tethered AMPs may represent a viable alternative for preventing and treating wound infection while also supporting tissue repair.

  8. Antimicrobial peptide-based treatment for endodontic infections--biotechnological innovation in endodontics.

    PubMed

    Lima, Stella Maris de Freitas; de Pádua, Gabriela Martins; Sousa, Maurício Gonçalves da Costa; Freire, Mirna de Souza; Franco, Octávio Luiz; Rezende, Taia Maria Berto

    2015-01-01

    The presence/persistence of microorganisms in the pulp and periapical area corresponds to the maintenance of an exacerbated immune response that leads to the start of periradicular bone resorption and its perpetuation. In endodontic treatment, the available intracanal medications do not have all the desirable properties in the context of endodontic infection and apical periodontitis; they need to include not only strong antimicrobial performance but also an immunomodulatory and reparative activity, without host damage. In addition, there are various levels of resistance to root canal medications. Thus, antimicrobial agents that effectively eliminate resistant species in root canals could potentially improve endodontic treatment. In the emergence of new therapies, an increasing number of studies on antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have been seen over the past few years. AMPs are defense biomolecules produced in response to infection, and they have a wide spectrum of action against many oral microorganisms. There are some studies that correlate peptides and oral infections, including oral peptides, neuropeptides, and bacterial, fish, bovine and synthetic peptides. So far, there are around 120 published studies correlating endodontic microbiota with AMPs but, according to our knowledge, there are no registered patents in the American patent database. There are a considerable number of AMPs that exhibit excellent antimicrobial activity against endodontic microbiota at a small inhibitory concentration and modulate an exacerbated immune response, down-regulating bone resorption. All these reasons indicate the antimicrobial peptide-based endodontic treatment as an emerging and promising option. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. On the Functional Overlap between Complement and Anti-Microbial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Zimmer, Jana; Hobkirk, James; Mohamed, Fatima; Browning, Michael J.; Stover, Cordula M.

    2015-01-01

    Intriguingly, activated complement and anti-microbial peptides share certain functionalities; lytic, phagocytic, and chemo-attractant activities and each may, in addition, exert cell instructive roles. Each has been shown to have distinct LPS detoxifying activity and may play a role in the development of endotoxin tolerance. In search of the origin of complement, a functional homolog of complement C3 involved in opsonization has been identified in horseshoe crabs. Horseshoe crabs possess anti-microbial peptides able to bind to acyl chains or phosphate groups/saccharides of endotoxin, LPS. Complement activity as a whole is detectable in marine invertebrates. These are also a source of anti-microbial peptides with potential pharmaceutical applicability. Investigating the locality for the production of complement pathway proteins and their role in modulating cellular immune responses are emerging fields. The significance of local synthesis of complement components is becoming clearer from in vivo studies of parenchymatous disease involving specifically generated, complement-deficient mouse lines. Complement C3 is a central component of complement activation. Its provision by cells of the myeloid lineage varies. Their effector functions in turn are increased in the presence of anti-microbial peptides. This may point to a potentiating range of activities, which should serve the maintenance of health but may also cause disease. Because of the therapeutic implications, this review will consider closely studies dealing with complement activation and anti-microbial peptide activity in acute inflammation (e.g., dialysis-related peritonitis, appendicitis, and ischemia). PMID:25646095

  10. Extreme antimicrobial peptide and polymyxin B resistance in the genus Burkholderia.

    PubMed

    Loutet, Slade A; Valvano, Miguel A

    2011-01-01

    Cationic antimicrobial peptides and polymyxins are a group of naturally occurring antibiotics that can also possess immunomodulatory activities. They are considered a new source of antibiotics for treating infections by bacteria that are resistant to conventional antibiotics. Members of the genus Burkholderia, which includes various human pathogens, are inherently resistant to antimicrobial peptides. The resistance is several orders of magnitude higher than that of other Gram-negative bacteria such as Escherichia coli, Salmonella enterica, or Pseudomonas aeruginosa. This review summarizes our current understanding of antimicrobial peptide and polymyxin B resistance in the genus Burkholderia. These bacteria possess major and minor resistance mechanisms that will be described in detail. Recent studies have revealed that many other emerging Gram-negative opportunistic pathogens may also be inherently resistant to antimicrobial peptides and polymyxins and we propose that Burkholderia sp. are a model system to investigate the molecular basis of the resistance in extremely resistant bacteria. Understanding resistance in these types of bacteria will be important if antimicrobial peptides come to be used regularly for the treatment of infections by susceptible bacteria because this may lead to increased resistance in the species that are currently susceptible and may also open up new niches for opportunistic pathogens with high inherent resistance.

  11. Mechanism of action and specificity of antimicrobial peptides designed based on buforin IIb.

    PubMed

    Jang, Su A; Kim, Hyun; Lee, Ju Young; Shin, Ju Ri; Kim, Da Jung; Cho, Ju Hyun; Kim, Sun Chang