Antimicrobial Peptides: An Emerging Hope in the Era of New Infections and Resistance

A special issue of Antibiotics (ISSN 2079-6382). This special issue belongs to the section "Antimicrobial Peptides".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 July 2024 | Viewed by 5670

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, School of Medicine, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, USA
Interests: antimicrobial peptides; host-pathogen interaction; signaling network during disease; immunotherapy

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Guest Editor
Dipartimento di Sanità Pubblica e Malattie Infettive, Università degli Studi di Roma La Sapienza, Rome, Italy
Interests: clinical microbiology; chlamydia; bacterial pathogenesis; pathogen-host interactions; infection and cardiovascular diseases; cervicovaginal microbiota; biofilm; in vitro susceptibility testing; antibacterial agents

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In the recent past, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) received great attention as a promising alternative to conventional antibiotics due to their unique properties. AMPs are naturally occurring integral components of the host defense system and are functional throughout all orders of life, from prokaryotes to eukaryotes. AMPs are potent molecules with a broad spectrum of biological activities against infectious and pathogenic agents such as bacteria, fungi, viruses, and parasites.

In this Special Issue, authors are invited to submit original research papers, review articles, short communications, case series, and opinion papers related to but not limited to the following specific areas of research:

  1. Screening, purification, and characterization of novel AMPs;
  2. Genome mining and comparative analysis of AMP-producing biosynthetic gene clusters;
  3. Cloning and heterologous expression of novel AMPs;
  4. Structural characterization and design of new AMPs with potential therapeutic activities;
  5. Strategies to understand the mechanisms of AMPs;
  6. Standardization of AMPs biological activities against various pathogens such as bacteria, fungi, viruses, and parasites, as well as chronic diseases like cancer and cystic fibrosis;
  7. Immunomodulatory properties of AMPs and potential therapeutic applications;
  8. Role of AMPs in human diseases;
  9. Combination therapies of AMPs with conventional antibiotics;
  10. Comparative genomics and evolutionary studies of AMPs;
  11. Evolution and resistance development against AMPs;
  12. Artificial intelligence and development of novel AMPs.

Dr. Piyush Baindara
Dr. Marisa Di Pietro
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Antibiotics is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2900 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • antimicrobial peptides
  • antimicrobial resistance
  • infectious diseases
  • antibacterial
  • antifungal
  • immunomodulatory properties
  • therapeutics
  • evolution

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

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11 pages, 893 KiB  
Article
Anti-Microbial Activities of Mussel-Derived Recombinant Proteins against Gram-Negative Bacteria
by Dong Yun Kim, You Bin Oh, Je Seon Park, Yu-Hong Min and Min Chul Park
Antibiotics 2024, 13(3), 239; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics13030239 - 05 Mar 2024
Viewed by 1017
Abstract
Many anti-microbial peptides (AMPs) and pro-apoptotic peptides are considered as novel anti-microbial agents, distinguished by their different characteristics. Nevertheless, AMPs exhibit certain limitations, including poor stability and potential toxicity, which hinder their suitability for applications in pharmaceutics and medical devices. In this study, [...] Read more.
Many anti-microbial peptides (AMPs) and pro-apoptotic peptides are considered as novel anti-microbial agents, distinguished by their different characteristics. Nevertheless, AMPs exhibit certain limitations, including poor stability and potential toxicity, which hinder their suitability for applications in pharmaceutics and medical devices. In this study, we used recombinant mussel adhesive protein (MAP) as a robust scaffold to overcome these limitations associated with AMPs. Mussel adhesive protein fused with functional peptides (MAP-FPs) was used to evaluate anti-microbial activities, minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC), and time-kill kinetics (TKK) assays against six of bacteria strains. MAP and MAP-FPs were proved to have an anti-microbial effect with MIC of 4 or 8 µM against only Gram-negative bacteria strains. All tested MAP-FPs killed four different Gram-negative bacteria strains within 180 min. Especially, MAP-FP-2 and -5 killed three Gram-negative bacteria strain, including E. coli, S. typhimurium, and K. pneumoniae, within 10 min. A cytotoxicity study using Vero and HEK293T cells indicated the safety of MAP and MAP-FP-2 and -3. Thermal stability of MAP-FP-2 was also validated by HPLC analysis at an accelerated condition for 4 weeks. This study identified that MAP-FPs have novel anti-microbial activity, inhibiting the growth and rapidly killing Gram-negative bacteria strains with high thermal stability and safety. Full article
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13 pages, 1400 KiB  
Article
Impacts of Hydrophobic Mismatch on Antimicrobial Peptide Efficacy and Bilayer Permeabilization
by Steven Meier, Zachary M. Ridgway, Angela L. Picciano and Gregory A. Caputo
Antibiotics 2023, 12(11), 1624; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics12111624 - 14 Nov 2023
Viewed by 1062
Abstract
Antimicrobial resistance continues to be a major threat to world health, with the continued emergence of resistant bacterial strains. Antimicrobial peptides have emerged as an attractive option for the development of novel antimicrobial compounds in part due to their ubiquity in nature and [...] Read more.
Antimicrobial resistance continues to be a major threat to world health, with the continued emergence of resistant bacterial strains. Antimicrobial peptides have emerged as an attractive option for the development of novel antimicrobial compounds in part due to their ubiquity in nature and the general lack of resistance development to this class of molecules. In this work, we analyzed the antimicrobial peptide C18G and several truncated forms for efficacy and the underlying mechanistic effects of the sequence truncation. The peptides were screened for antimicrobial efficacy against several standard laboratory strains, and further analyzed using fluorescence spectroscopy to evaluate binding to model lipid membranes and bilayer disruption. The results show a clear correlation between the length of the peptide and the antimicrobial efficacy. Furthermore, there is a correlation between peptide length and the hydrophobic thickness of the bilayer, indicating that hydrophobic mismatch is likely a contributing factor to the loss of efficacy in shorter peptides. Full article
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11 pages, 1380 KiB  
Article
Evidence of Antibiotic Resistance and Virulence Factors in Environmental Isolates of Vibrio Species
by Rajkishor Pandey, Simran Sharma and Kislay Kumar Sinha
Antibiotics 2023, 12(6), 1062; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics12061062 - 16 Jun 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1580
Abstract
The outbreak of waterborne diseases such as cholera and non-cholera (vibriosis) is continuously increasing in the environment due to fecal and sewage discharge in water sources. Cholera and vibriosis are caused by different species of Vibrio genus which are responsible for acute diarrheal [...] Read more.
The outbreak of waterborne diseases such as cholera and non-cholera (vibriosis) is continuously increasing in the environment due to fecal and sewage discharge in water sources. Cholera and vibriosis are caused by different species of Vibrio genus which are responsible for acute diarrheal disease and soft tissue damage. Although incidences of cholera and vibriosis have been reported from the Vaishali district of Bihar, India, clinical or environmental strains have not been characterized in this region. Out of fifty environmental water samples, twelve different biochemical test results confirmed the presence of twenty Vibrio isolates. The isolates were found to belong to five different Vibrio species, namely V. proteolyticus, V. campbellii, V. nereis, V. cincinnatiensis, and V. harveyi. From the identified isolates, 65% and 45% isolates were found to be resistant to ampicillin and cephalexin, respectively. Additionally, two isolates were found to be resistant against six and four separately selected antibiotics. Furthermore, virulent hlyA and ompW genes were detected by PCR in two different isolates. Additionally, phage induction was also noticed in two different isolates which carry lysogenic phage in their genome. Overall, the results reported the identification of five different Vibrio species in environmental water samples. The isolates showed multiple antibacterial resistance, phage induction, and virulence gene profile in their genome. Full article
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Review

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15 pages, 1112 KiB  
Review
Gut-Antimicrobial Peptides: Synergistic Co-Evolution with Antibiotics to Combat Multi-Antibiotic Resistance
by Piyush Baindara and Santi M. Mandal
Antibiotics 2023, 12(12), 1732; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics12121732 - 14 Dec 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1437
Abstract
Due to huge diversity and dynamic competition, the human gut microbiome produces a diverse array of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) that play an important role in human health. The gut microbiome has an important role in maintaining gut homeostasis by the AMPs and by [...] Read more.
Due to huge diversity and dynamic competition, the human gut microbiome produces a diverse array of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) that play an important role in human health. The gut microbiome has an important role in maintaining gut homeostasis by the AMPs and by interacting with other human organs via established connections such as the gut–lung, and gut–brain axis. Additionally, gut AMPs play a synergistic role with other gut microbiota and antimicrobials to maintain gut homeostasis by fighting against multi-antibiotic resistance (MAR) bacteria. Further, conventional antibiotics intake creates a synergistic evolutionary pressure for gut AMPs, where antibiotics and gut AMPs fight synergistically against MAR. Overall, gut AMPs are evolving under a complex and highly synergistic co-evolutionary pressure created by the various interactions between gut microbiota, gut AMPs, and antibiotics; however, the complete mechanism is not well understood. The current review explores the synergistic action of gut AMPs and antibiotics along with possibilities to fight against MAR bacteria. Full article
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