Next Article in Journal
Identification of Selected Antibiotic Resistance Genes in Two Different Wastewater Treatment Plant Systems in Poland: A Preliminary Study
Previous Article in Journal
Effect of Carotenoids from Phaeodactylum tricornutum on Palmitate-Treated HepG2 Cells
Previous Article in Special Issue
How Computational Chemistry and Drug Delivery Techniques Can Support the Development of New Anticancer Drugs
Review

Antimicrobial Peptides as Anticancer Agents: Functional Properties and Biological Activities

1
Molecular Biology and Viral Oncology Unit, Istituto Nazionale Tumori IRCCS “Fondazione G. Pascale”, 80131 Napoli, Italy
2
Innovative Immunological Models, Istituto Nazionale Tumori IRCCS “Fondazione G. Pascale”, 80131 Napoli, Italy
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Co-first authors of this study.
Molecules 2020, 25(12), 2850; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25122850
Received: 28 May 2020 / Revised: 16 June 2020 / Accepted: 17 June 2020 / Published: 19 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Peptides and Small Molecules as Anti-Cancer Agents)
Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), or host defense peptides, are small cationic or amphipathic molecules produced by prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms that play a key role in the innate immune defense against viruses, bacteria and fungi. AMPs have either antimicrobial or anticancer activities. Indeed, cationic AMPs are able to disrupt microbial cell membranes by interacting with negatively charged phospholipids. Moreover, several peptides are capable to trigger cytotoxicity of human cancer cells by binding to negatively charged phosphatidylserine moieties which are selectively exposed on the outer surface of cancer cell plasma membranes. In addition, some AMPs, such as LTX-315, have shown to induce release of tumor antigens and potent damage associated molecular patterns by causing alterations in the intracellular organelles of cancer cells. Given the recognized medical need of novel anticancer drugs, AMPs could represent a potential source of effective therapeutic agents, either alone or in combination with other small molecules, in oncology. In this review we summarize and describe the properties and the mode of action of AMPs as well as the strategies to increase their selectivity toward specific cancer cells. View Full-Text
Keywords: antimicrobial peptides; AMPs; cancer; anticancer peptides; ACPs antimicrobial peptides; AMPs; cancer; anticancer peptides; ACPs
Show Figures

Graphical abstract

MDPI and ACS Style

Tornesello, A.L.; Borrelli, A.; Buonaguro, L.; Buonaguro, F.M.; Tornesello, M.L. Antimicrobial Peptides as Anticancer Agents: Functional Properties and Biological Activities. Molecules 2020, 25, 2850. https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25122850

AMA Style

Tornesello AL, Borrelli A, Buonaguro L, Buonaguro FM, Tornesello ML. Antimicrobial Peptides as Anticancer Agents: Functional Properties and Biological Activities. Molecules. 2020; 25(12):2850. https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25122850

Chicago/Turabian Style

Tornesello, Anna L., Antonella Borrelli, Luigi Buonaguro, Franco M. Buonaguro, and Maria L. Tornesello 2020. "Antimicrobial Peptides as Anticancer Agents: Functional Properties and Biological Activities" Molecules 25, no. 12: 2850. https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25122850

Find Other Styles
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Back to TopTop