Synthesis and SAR Studies of Antibacterial Peptidyl Derivatives Based upon the Binding Site of Human Cystatin C

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BACKGROUND: Antibacterial peptidyl derivative - Cystapep 1, was previously found to be active both against antibiotic-resistant staphylococci and streptococci as well as antibiotic-susceptible strains of these species. Therefore, it is a promising lead compound to search for new antimicrobial peptidomimetics.

OBJECTIVES: We focused on identifying structural elements that are responsible for the biological activity of Cystapep 1 and its five analogues. We tried to find an answer to the question about the mechanism of action of the tested compounds. Therefore we have investigated in details the possibility of interacting these compounds with biological membrane mimetics.

METHODS: The subject compounds were synthesized in solution, purified and characterized by HPLC and mass spectrometry. Then, the staphylococci susceptibility tests were performed and their cytotoxicity was established. The results of Cystapep 1 and its analogues interactions with model target were examined using the DSC and ITC techniques. At the end the spatial structures of the tested peptidomimetics using NMR technique were obtained.

RESULTS: Antimicrobial and cytotoxicity tests show that Cystapep 1 and its peptidomimetic V are good drug candidates. DSC and ITC studies indicate that disruption of membrane is not the only possible mechanism of action of Cystapep 1-like compounds. For Cystapep 1 itself, a multi-step mechanism of interaction with a negatively charged membrane is observed, which indicates other processes occurring alongside the binding process. The conformational analysis indicated the presence of a hydrophobic cluster, composed of certain side chains, only in the structures of active peptidomimetics. This can facilitate the anchoring of the peptidyl derivatives to the bacterial membrane.

CONCLUSION: An increase in hydrophobicity of the peptidomimetics improved the antimicrobial activity against S. aureus, however there is no simple correlation between the biological activity and the strength of interactions of the peptidyl with bacterial membrane.


  • Maria Dzierżyńska
  • Emilia Sikorska
  • Aneta Pogorzelska
  • Ewa Mulkiewicz
  • Justyna Sawicka
  • Dariusz Wyrzykowski
  • Izabela Małuch
  • Anders Grubb
  • Franciszek Kasprzykowski
  • Sylwia Rodziewicz-Motowidło
Externa organisationer
  • Skåne University Hospital
  • University of Gdansk
  • Medical University of Gdansk

Ämnesklassifikation (UKÄ) – OBLIGATORISK

  • Klinisk laboratoriemedicin
  • Infektionsmedicin
Sidor (från-till)423-434
Antal sidor12
TidskriftProtein and Peptide Letters
Utgåva nummer6
Tidigt onlinedatum2019 mar 11
StatusPublished - 2019 jul 4
Peer review utfördJa
Externt publiceradJa