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Marine Antimicrobial Peptides: Nature Provides Templates for the Design of Novel Compounds against Pathogenic Bacteria

Department of Pharmacy, CIRPEB-University of Naples “Federico II”, Via Mezzocannone 16, 80134 Napoli, Italy
Department of Experimental Medicine, II University of Naples, Via De Crecchio 7, 80138 Napoli, Italy
John Felice Rome Center, Loyola University Chicago, Via Massimi 114, 00136 Roma, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Már Másson
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(5), 785;
Received: 22 April 2016 / Revised: 11 May 2016 / Accepted: 18 May 2016 / Published: 21 May 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Drug Delivery and Antimicrobial Agents)
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The discovery of antibiotics for the treatment of bacterial infections brought the idea that bacteria would no longer endanger human health. However, bacterial diseases still represent a worldwide treat. The ability of microorganisms to develop resistance, together with the indiscriminate use of antibiotics, is mainly responsible for this situation; thus, resistance has compelled the scientific community to search for novel therapeutics. In this scenario, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) provide a promising strategy against a wide array of pathogenic microorganisms, being able to act directly as antimicrobial agents but also being important regulators of the innate immune system. This review is an attempt to explore marine AMPs as a rich source of molecules with antimicrobial activity. In fact, the sea is poorly explored in terms of AMPs, but it represents a resource with plentiful antibacterial agents performing their role in a harsh environment. For the application of AMPs in the medical field limitations correlated to their peptide nature, their inactivation by environmental pH, presence of salts, proteases, or other components have to be solved. Thus, these peptides may act as templates for the design of more potent and less toxic compounds. View Full-Text
Keywords: antimicrobial peptide; membrane bilayer; microbial resistance; marine AMPs antimicrobial peptide; membrane bilayer; microbial resistance; marine AMPs

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Falanga, A.; Lombardi, L.; Franci, G.; Vitiello, M.; Iovene, M.R.; Morelli, G.; Galdiero, M.; Galdiero, S. Marine Antimicrobial Peptides: Nature Provides Templates for the Design of Novel Compounds against Pathogenic Bacteria. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17, 785.

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