Survey of small antifungal peptides with chemotherapeutic potential.

Andrew Paul Desbois, David Tschorner, Peter John Coote

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12 Citations (Scopus)


Many cationic peptides with antimicrobial properties have been isolated from bacteria, fungi, plants, and animals. These peptides vary in molecular size, potency and spectra of activities. This report surveys the literature to highlight the peptides that have antifungal activity and greatest potential for development as new therapeutic agents. Thus, to be included in the evaluation, each peptide had to fulfil the following criteria: (i) potent antifungal activity, (ii) no, or minimal, mammalian cell toxicity, (iii) of ≤25 amino acids in length, which minimises the costs of synthesis, reduces immunogenicity and enhances bioavailability and stability in vivo, (iv) minimal post-translational modifications (also reduces the production costs). The 80 peptides that satisfied these criteria are discussed with respect to their structures, mechanisms of antimicrobial action and in vitro and in vivo toxicities. Certainly, some of these small peptides warrant further study and have potential for future exploitation as new antifungal agents.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages28
JournalCurrent Pharmaceutical Biotechnology
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • antimicrobial peptides; Candida albicans; drug resistance; lactoferrin; mechanism of action; yeast.


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