Identification and characterization of novel anti-infectious peptides from the male genital tract.

Abstract : Antimicrobial resistance has become aggravated over the last 20 years. During this period pharmaceutical industries have focused on making incremental improvements on long-established antibiotics and, to an extent, sidelined the search for new drugs to overcome pharmaco-resistance strategies currently employed by pathogens. As a consequence bacterial infections are, to date, the most morbid and resistant among infectious diseases. This is, in particular, true for: diarrheic or respiratory infections, meningitis, sexually transmitted diseases and nosocomial infections. The time has come to discover innovative molecules for anti-infection therapies. Among new molecules with potential interest are antimicrobial peptides, an important component of the natural defenses of most living organisms. These are welcomed as serious candidates considering: their rapid microbicidal action, their broad spectrum of activity (bacteria, fungi, parasites, enveloped virus) and their original mechanism of action; the latter being difficult to evade by the resistance strategies employed by bacteria. Over the past decade, more than 700 microbicidal peptides have been inferred from various species including vertebrates. In the latter it is known that organs of the male genital tract express a potent and sophisticated anti-infectious defense system based partly on antimicrobial peptides. It follows that major reproductive organs such as the testis and epididymis are an ideal source for novel, highly specific microbicidal peptides. Using state-of-the-art proteomics and innovative syntactical biocomputing approaches, we identified numerous peptides with antimicrobial properties. This establishes the male genital tract as a veritable gold-mine for new anti-infectious agents to be exploited for future medicine.
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Conference papers
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Frédéric Bourgeon, Jacques Nicolas, Nathalie Melaine, Charles Pineau. Identification and characterization of novel anti-infectious peptides from the male genital tract.. 34th Federation of European Biochemical Societies (FEBS) Congress, Jul 2009, Prague, Czech Republic. ⟨hal-00667141⟩

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