What are Antimicrobial Peptides and What You Should Know

So you’ve heard of antimicrobial peptides but you’re curious to learn more; let’s dive right into it.

Antimicrobial Peptide Classification System

There are several types of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) in nature, and they constitute a significant element of many species’ innate immune systems. More than 2,600 antimicrobial peptides have been identified to date. This list of pathogens includes a broad range of species from fish to birds to insects to amphibians to mollusks to mammals. You can buy peptides online in the USA if you are a licensed researcher.

Antimicrobial Peptides Derived from Microorganisms

There are two kinds of antimicrobial peptides obtained from microorganisms: those derived from bacteria and those from viruses. Bacteriocins are another name for antimicrobial peptides generated from bacteria. Bioactive peptide compounds with bactericidal properties are known as bacteriocins, and bacteria create them throughout the metabolic process via proteins. Peptides that are hydrophobic or amphiphilic tend to have cationic amino acid sequences. Class I bacteriocins, class II, and III bacteriocins are subdivided based on their biochemical characteristics. Type I bacteriocins, which have a molecular mass of less than 5 Ku and an amino acid count ranging from 19 to 38, are also known as thioether antibiotics. Mucosal activity is high, and they can withstand high temperatures well. Lanthionine and -methyllanthione are only a few of the uncommon thioether amino acids that make up their structure. Bacteriocins of class II, also known as lactic acid bacteriocins, are a newer subclass of antibacterial peptides. It is possible to employ their biological, physical, and chemical features to preserve food. Class II bacteriocins have a somewhat lower molecular mass (4-6 Ku) than class I bacteriocins. Bifidobacterium proprotein translocases release bacteriocin class III, with an average molecular weight of 30 kDa and excellent heat resistance. Antibacterial peptides produced from viruses are also present in a limited number of forms. Peptides encoded by the C-terminal region of the HIV-1 transmembrane protein, known as LLPs, have a high toxic impact on microorganisms and cells and are among them. High levels of arginine and the absence of lysine are the hallmarks of this kind of protein. Antimicrobial peptides generated from microbes often have a cyclic structure.

Antimicrobial Peptides Derived from Plants

Antibacterial peptides produced from plants are effective against plant pathogens and human pathogens. Inhibitors of the plant’s defense system are also known as antibiotic peptides. The phenotypes of common plant-derived antimicrobials include the thionine peptide and the defensins. Common traits are positive charge, disulfide bond, and target locations in the cell’s outer membrane.

Antimicrobial Peptides Derived from Insect DNA

Insects make up more than a million different species in the natural environment. They are also very adaptable and well-armed. Antimicrobial peptides are synthesized by the hemolymph or other portions of an insect’s body in response to environmental stimuli. A vital component of the immune system, they are an organic component of the insect’s humoral immune system. This animal’s fat body produces antibacterial peptides, which inhibit infections in several systems. Antibacterial peptides found in insects number in the hundreds. Cecropins, lysozyme, defensins, glycine-rich peptides, and proline-rich peptides are all antibacterial peptides, and they are all classified as such based on their amino acid sequence.

Antibacterial Peptides Derived from Amphibians

The amphibian’s skin is exposed, the humidity is high, and it can breathe. It must be in a humid environment, ideal for certain pathogenic germs to thrive. A defensive mechanism against harmful microorganisms evolved through time for amphibians to exploit and adapt to a wide range of habitats and ecological situations. Immune defenses in frogs are bolstered by antibacterial peptides, a key effector molecule of innate immunity generated by skin glands in response to stress, trauma, and other stimuli. Since its inception, the antimicrobial peptide gene has experienced several duplications and mutations, giving rise to many antimicrobial peptide structures. More than 1,400 antimicrobial peptides have so far been found in amphibian skin secretions, and they come from a variety of sources, all of which include unique antimicrobial bioactive compounds. It is possible to categorize amphibian-derived antimicrobial peptides into two types based on intramolecular disulfide links: cyclic antimicrobial peptides, which include these bonds, and linear antimicrobial peptides, which have -helical structures.