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Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(10), 1969-1994; doi:10.3390/md9101969
Article

Inducible ASABF-Type Antimicrobial Peptide from the Sponge Suberites domuncula: Microbicidal and Hemolytic Activity in Vitro and Toxic Effect on Molluscs in Vivo

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1 ERC Advanced Grant Research Group at the Institute for Physiological Chemistry, University Medical Center of the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Duesbergweg 6, Mainz D-55128, Germany 2 Rudjer Boskovic Institute, Center for Marine Research, Giordano Paliaga 5, Rovinj HR-52210, Croatia
This contribution is dedicated to Dr. Peter Murphy (Townsville, Australia) in memory of his comprehensive studies in worldwide marine biodiversity.
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 28 July 2011 / Revised: 26 September 2011 / Accepted: 8 October 2011 / Published: 19 October 2011
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Abstract

Since sponges, as typical filter-feeders, are exposed to a high load of attacking prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms, they are armed with a wide arsenal of antimicrobial/cytostatic low-molecular-weight, non-proteinaceous bioactive compounds. Here we present the first sponge agent belonging to the group of ASABF-type antimicrobial peptides. The ASABF gene was identified and cloned from the demospongeSuberites domuncula. The mature peptide, with a length of 64 aa residues has a predicted pI of 9.24, and comprises the characteristic CSαβ structural motif. Consequently, the S. domuncula ASABF shares high similarity with the nematode ASABFs; it is distantly related to the defensins. The recombinant peptide was found to display besides microbicidal activity, anti-fungal activity. In addition, the peptide lyses human erythrocytes. The expression ofASABF is upregulated after exposure to the apoptosis-inducing agent 2,2'-dipyridyl. During the process of apoptosis of surface tissue of S. domuncula, grazing gastropods (Bittium sp.) are attracted by quinolinic acid which is synthesized through the kynurenine pathway by the enzyme 3-hydroxyanthranilate 3,4-dioxygenase (HAD). Finally, the gastropods are repelled from the sponge tissue by the ASABF. It is shown that the effector peptide ASABF is sequentially expressed after the induction of the HAD gene and a caspase, as a central enzyme executing apoptosis.
Keywords: sponges; Suberites domuncula; ASABF; antimicrobial peptides; apoptosis; Bittium sp. sponges; Suberites domuncula; ASABF; antimicrobial peptides; apoptosis; Bittium sp.
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.

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Wiens, M.; Schröder, H.C.; Korzhev, M.; Wang, X.-H.; Batel, R.; Müller, W.E.G. Inducible ASABF-Type Antimicrobial Peptide from the Sponge Suberites domuncula: Microbicidal and Hemolytic Activity in Vitro and Toxic Effect on Molluscs in Vivo. Mar. Drugs 2011, 9, 1969-1994.

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