Author(s): Bucki R, Namiot DB, Namiot Z, Savage PB, Janmey PA
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Abstract OBJECTIVES: Cationic antimicrobial peptides (CAPs) are the effector molecules of innate immunity, similar in potency to classic antibiotics that function in the first-line of defence against infectious agents. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of negatively charged mucins on the antibacterial activity of the positively charged cathelicidin LL-37 peptide, its synthetic analogue WLBU2 and the antimicrobial cationic steroid CSA-13. METHODS: Mucin, DNA, F-actin and hCAP-18/LL-37 in saliva samples were evaluated by microscopy or immunoblotting. Bacterial killing assays and determination of MICs were used to determine bactericidal activity. Binding of rhodamine-B-labelled LL-37 peptide to mucin was fluorimetrically assessed. RESULTS: Microscopic evaluation of saliva after addition of rhodamine-B-labelled LL-37 showed localization similar to that observed after the addition of a specific mucin-binding lectin. Immunoblotting confirmed the presence of hCAP-18/LL-37 in saliva samples and LL-37 peptide bound to isolated submaxillary gland mucin-coated plates. Mucin/LL-37 binding was partially prevented by treatment of mucin with neuraminidase, indicating involvement of sialic acid moieties. Decreased LL-37 and WLBU2 antibacterial activity was observed in the presence of mucin or dialysed human saliva, whereas CSA-13 antibacterial activity was significantly resistant to inhibition by mucins. CONCLUSIONS: This study shows that the antibacterial LL-37 peptide and its synthetic analogue WLBU2 are inhibited by salivary mucin and that the cationic steroid CSA-13 retains most of its function in the presence of an equal amount of mucin or saliva.
This article was published in J Antimicrob Chemother
and referenced in Journal of Colitis & Diverticulitis