1 Tahrcountry Musings: Frogs hold promise of new drugs against antibiotic-resistant infections

Thursday, December 01, 2011

Frogs hold promise of new drugs against antibiotic-resistant infections

Frogs live in warm, wet places where bacteria thrive. To ward off problems of infections frogs have adapted skin that secretes chemicals, known as peptides. 

Researchers Yun Zhang, Wen-Hui Lee and Xinwang in an effort to extract new drugs identified more than 700 of these peptides from nine species of odorous frogs and concluded that the AMPs account for almost one-third of all AMPs found in the world. This is the the greatest known diversity of these germ-killing chemicals.

 The researchers say peptidomic and genomic investigation of natural antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) from amphibian skin secretions can provide a large amount of structure–functional information to design peptide antibiotics with therapeutic potential.

Purified peptides showed strong antimicrobial activities against 4 tested microbe strains. Twenty-three deduced peptides were synthesized and their bioactivities, including antimicrobial, antioxidant, hemolytic, immunomodulatory and insulin-releasing activities, were evaluated. Some of the AMPs have a dual action, killing bacteria directly and also activating the immune system

Journal reference
Xinwang Yang, Wen-Hui Lee, Yun Zhang. Extremely Abundant Antimicrobial Peptides Existed in the Skins of Nine Kinds of Chinese Odorous Frogs. Journal of Proteome Research, 2011 DOI:10.1021/pr200782u

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