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Understanding the potential health benefits of antimicrobial peptides

Researchers from the Military Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology in Poland reviewed the results of studies on the use of peptides to combat infections in vivo. This review appeared in the journal Annals of Agricultural and Environmental Medicine.

  • Due to the emergence of antibiotic resistance on a global scale, scientists are in search of new antimicrobial factors.
  • Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), which are produced by bacteria, viruses, plants and animals, may be considered a new class of therapeutic agents for the prophylaxis and treatment of systemic and topical infections.
  • One of the most important areas for the application of AMPs is ophthalmology.
  • AMPs in ophthalmology may be used for the protection of contact lenses from ocular pathogens.
  • Several AMPs, such as pexiganan (magainin analog), MX-226 (based on indolicidin), NEUPREX (derived from human bactericidal/permeability-increasing protein), IB-367 (variant of porcine protegrin), P113 (based on histatin), daptomycin, polymyxins and peptidomimetics, are currently undergoing clinical trials for application in the treatment of local infections.
  • For systemic infections, AMPs like P113D (modified P113 containing D-amino acids), colistin, peptoids and peptides containing non-typical amino acids or non-peptide elements are also being studied.
  • AMPs are also used as antiprotozoal, antifungal, antitoxic and immunostimulatory agents.
  • However, some AMPs may be limited by their susceptibility to proteolysis and microbial resistance to peptides.

The researchers see the use of AMPs as a promising strategy in the fight against microbial infections.

Journal Reference:

Mirski T, Niemcewicz M, Bartoszcze M, Gryko R, Michalski A. UTILISATION OF PEPTIDES AGAINST MICROBIAL INFECTIONS – A REVIEW. Annals of Agricultural and Environmental Medicine. 2017;25(2):205–210. DOI: 10.26444/aaem/74471

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