Structure-activity relationships of the antimicrobial peptide arasin 1 - and mode of action studies of the N terminal, proline-rich region
AuthorPaulsen, Victoria; Blencke, Hans-Matti; Benincasa, Monica; Haug, Tor; Eksteen, Jacobus Johannes; Styrvold, Olaf B.; Scocchi, Marco; Stensvåg, Klara
Arasin 1 is a 37 amino acid long proline-rich antimicrobial peptide isolated from the spider crab, Hyas araneus. In this work the active region of arasin 1 was identified through structure-activity studies using different peptide fragments derived from the arasin 1 sequence. The pharmacophore was found to be located in the proline/arginine-rich NH2 terminus of the peptide and the fragment arasin 1(1–23) was almost equally active to the full length peptide. Arasin 1 and its active fragment arasin 1(1–23) were shown to be non-toxic to human red blood cells and arasin 1(1–23) was able to bind chitin, a component of fungal cell walls and the crustacean shell. The mode of action of the fully active N-terminal arasin 1(1–23) was explored through killing kinetic and membrane permeabilization studies. At the minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC), arasin 1(1–23) was not bactericidal and had no membrane disruptive effect. In contrast, at concentrations of 5×MIC and above it was bactericidal and interfered with membrane integrity. We conclude that arasin 1(1–23) has a different mode of action than lytic peptides, like cecropin P1. Thus, we suggest a dual mode of action for arasin 1(1–23) involving membrane disruption at peptide concentrations above MIC, and an alternative mechanism of action, possibly involving intracellular targets, at MIC.
PublisherPublic Library of Science (PLoS)
CitationPLoS ONE (2012), vol. 8(1): e53326
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