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Zoological Research
Kunming Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences
ISSN: 2095-8137
Vol. 40, No. 3, 2019, pp. 198-204
Bioline Code: zr19019
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

Zoological Research, Vol. 40, No. 3, 2019, pp. 198-204

 en Effects of C-terminal amidation and heptapeptide ring on the biological activities and advanced structure of amurin-9KY, a novel antimicrobial peptide identified from the brown frog, Rana kunyuensis check for this species in other resources
Zhang, Fen; Guo, Zhi-Lai; Chen, Yan; Li, Li; Yu, Hai-Ning & Wang, Yi-Peng


Rana kunyuensis is a species of brown frog that lives exclusively on Kunyu Mountain, Yantai, China. In the current study, a 279-bp cDNA sequence encoding a novel antimicrobial peptide (AMP), designated as amurin-9KY, was cloned from synthesized double-strand skin cDNA of R. kunyuensis. The amurin-9KY precursor was composed of 62 amino acid (aa) residues, whereas the mature peptide was composed of 14 aa and contained two cysteines forming a C-terminal heptapeptide ring (Rana box domain) and an amidated C-terminus. These structural characters represent a novel amphibian AMP family. Although amurin-9KY exhibited high similarity to the already identified amurin-9AM from R. amurensis check for this species in other resources , little is known about the structures and activities of amurin-9 family AMPs so far. Therefore, amurin-9KY and its three derivatives (amurin-9KY1–3) were designed and synthesized. The structures and activities were examined to evaluate the influence of C-terminal amidation and the heptapeptide ring on the activities and structure of amurin-9KY. Results indicated that C-terminal amidation was essential for antimicrobial activity, whereas both C-terminal amidation and the heptapeptide ring played roles in the low hemolytic activity. Circular dichroism (CD) spectra showed that the four peptides adopted an α-helical conformation in THF/H2O (v/v 1:1) solution, but a random coil in aqueous solution. Elimination of the C-terminal heptapeptide ring generated two free cysteine residues with unpaired thiol groups, which greatly increased the concentration-dependent anti-oxidant activity. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) was also performed to determine the possible bactericidal mechanisms.

Antimicrobial peptides; Rana kunyuensis; Amurin-9KY; Heptapeptide ring; C-terminal amidation; Structure activity relationship

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