The branched M33 antimicrobial peptide was previously shown to be very active against Gram-negative bacterial pathogens, including multidrug-resistant strains. In an attempt to produce back-up molecules, we synthesized an M33 peptide isomer consisting of D-aminoacids (M33-D). This isomeric version showed 4 to 16-fold higher activity against Gram-positive pathogens, including Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus epidermidis, than the original peptide, while retaining strong activity against Gram-negative bacteria. The antimicrobial activity of both peptides was influenced by their differential sensitivity to bacterial proteases. The better activity shown by M33-D against S. aureus compared to M33-L was confirmed in biofilm eradication experiments where M33-L showed 12% activity with respect to M33-D, and in vivo models where Balb-c mice infected with S. aureus showed 100% and 0% survival when treated with M33-D and M33-L, respectively. M33-D appears to be an interesting candidate for the development of novel broad-spectrum antimicrobials active against bacterial pathogens of clinical importance.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)