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Pharmaceuticals 2015, 8(3), 483-503; doi:10.3390/ph8030483

Antifungal Activity of 14-Helical β-Peptides against Planktonic Cells and Biofilms of Candida Species

1
Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1415 Engineering Drive, Madison, WI 53706, USA
2
Department of Chemistry, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1415 Engineering Drive, Madison, WI 53706, USA
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Dacheng Ren
Received: 10 July 2015 / Revised: 29 July 2015 / Accepted: 4 August 2015 / Published: 13 August 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microbial Biofilms)
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Abstract

Candida albicans is the most prevalent cause of fungal infections and treatment is further complicated by the formation of drug resistant biofilms, often on the surfaces of implanted medical devices. In recent years, the incidence of fungal infections by other pathogenic Candida species such as C. glabrata, C. parapsilosis and C. tropicalis has increased. Amphiphilic, helical β-peptide structural mimetics of natural antimicrobial α-peptides have been shown to exhibit specific planktonic antifungal and anti-biofilm formation activity against C. albicans in vitro. Here, we demonstrate that β-peptides are also active against clinically isolated and drug resistant strains of C. albicans and against other opportunistic Candida spp. Different Candida species were susceptible to β-peptides to varying degrees, with C. tropicalis being the most and C. glabrata being the least susceptible. β-peptide hydrophobicity directly correlated with antifungal activity against all the Candida clinical strains and species tested. While β-peptides were largely ineffective at disrupting existing Candida biofilms, hydrophobic β-peptides were able to prevent the formation of C. albicans, C. glabrata, C. parapsilosis and C. tropicalis biofilms. The broad-spectrum antifungal activity of β-peptides against planktonic cells and in preventing biofilm formation suggests the promise of this class of molecules as therapeutics. View Full-Text
Keywords: Candida albicans; Candida glabrata; Candida tropicalis; Candida parapsilosis; biofilms; β-peptide; antimicrobial peptide; antifungal; hydrophobicity Candida albicans; Candida glabrata; Candida tropicalis; Candida parapsilosis; biofilms; β-peptide; antimicrobial peptide; antifungal; hydrophobicity
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Raman, N.; Lee, M.-R.; Lynn, D.M.; Palecek, S.P. Antifungal Activity of 14-Helical β-Peptides against Planktonic Cells and Biofilms of Candida Species. Pharmaceuticals 2015, 8, 483-503.

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