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Toxins 2018, 10(11), 461; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins10110461

Insect Antimicrobial Peptides, a Mini Review

1
College of Life Science, Yangtze University, Jingzhou 434025, China
2
Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, University of Hradec Kralove, 500 03 Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic
3
Department of Radiology and Toxicology, Faculty of Health and Social Studies, University of South Bohemia, 370 05 Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic
4
Biomedical Research Centre, University Hospital, 500 03 Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 20 September 2018 / Revised: 1 November 2018 / Accepted: 5 November 2018 / Published: 8 November 2018
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Abstract

Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are crucial effectors of the innate immune system. They provide the first line of defense against a variety of pathogens. AMPs display synergistic effects with conventional antibiotics, and thus present the potential for combined therapies. Insects are extremely resistant to bacterial infections. Insect AMPs are cationic and comprise less than 100 amino acids. These insect peptides exhibit an antimicrobial effect by disrupting the microbial membrane and do not easily allow microbes to develop drug resistance. Currently, membrane mechanisms underlying the antimicrobial effects of AMPs are proposed by different modes: the barrel-stave mode, toroidal-pore, carpet, and disordered toroidal-pore are the typical modes. Positive charge quantity, hydrophobic property and the secondary structure of the peptide are important for the antibacterial activity of AMPs. At present, several structural families of AMPs from insects are known (defensins, cecropins, drosocins, attacins, diptericins, ponericins, metchnikowins, and melittin), but new AMPs are frequently discovered. We reviewed the biological effects of the major insect AMPs. This review will provide further information that facilitates the study of insect AMPs and shed some light on novel microbicides. View Full-Text
Keywords: antimicrobial peptides; AMP; Structure-activity relationship; modification; mechanism of action antimicrobial peptides; AMP; Structure-activity relationship; modification; mechanism of action
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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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Wu, Q.; Patočka, J.; Kuča, K. Insect Antimicrobial Peptides, a Mini Review. Toxins 2018, 10, 461.

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