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Infectio

Print version ISSN 0123-9392

Abstract

TELLEZ, Germán Alberto  and  CASTANO, Jhon Carlos. Antimicrobial peptides. Infect. [online]. 2010, vol.14, n.1, pp.55-67. ISSN 0123-9392.

The antimicrobial peptides (AMP) are the effectors molecules of the innate immune system, finding groups of this kind of substances in almost all living organisms from bacteria to mammals. They are a family of versatile substances with complexes action mechanisms in the pathogen they interact with membrane, DNA synthesis and protein synthesis and folding, and also with the host showing immunomodulatory functions in wound healing and inflammation process. Even though the generation of resistance to the AMP is lower compare with conventional antibiotics there are resistance mechanism already describe to this kind of substances like degradation by proteases, releasing of inhibitory substances or conformational changes in the external membrane of the pathogen. Actually the study of this group of substances has make them see as potential tools for clinical use helping to counteract the problem of antibiotic resistance, but even great progress had been made in this field there still exist some controversial issues for future study.

Keywords : antimicrobial peptides; cationic antimicrobial peptides; host defense peptides; defensins; antibiotics, cecropins; cathelicidins.

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