The antimicrobial peptide, psacotheasin induces reactive oxygen species and triggers apoptosis in Candida albicans.
ABSTRACT Previously, the antimicrobial effects and membrane-active action of psacotheasin in Candida albicans were investigated. In this study, we have further found that a series of characteristic cellular changes of apoptosis in C. albicans can be induced by the accumulation of intracellular reactive oxygen species, specifically hydroxyl radicals, the well-known important regulators of apoptosis. Cells treated with psacotheasin showed diagnostic markers in yeast apoptosis at early stages: phosphatidylserine externalization from the inner to the outer membrane surface, visualized by Annexin V-staining; mitochondrial membrane depolarization, observed by DiOC6(3) staining; and increase of metacaspase activity, measured using the CaspACE FITC-VAD-FMK. Moreover, DNA fragmentation and condensation also revealed apoptotic phenomena at late stages through the TUNEL assay staining and DAPI staining, respectively. Taken together, our findings suggest that psacotheasin possess an antifungal property in C. albicans via apoptosis as another mode of action.
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ABSTRACT: Polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) have antifungal properties, but the mode by which they induce their action is not always clear. The aim of the study was to investigate apoptosis as a mode of action of antifungal PUFAs (stearidonic acid, eicosapentaenoic acid and docosapentaenoic acid) which are inhibitory towards biofilm formation of C. albicans and C. dubliniensis. Candida biofilms were grown in the absence or presence of 1mM PUFAs (linoleic acid, stearidonic acid, eicosapentaenoic acid, docosapentaenoic acid) for 48h at 37°C. The effect of these PUFAs on the membrane fatty acid profile and unsaturation index, oxidative stress, mitochondrial transmembrane potential and apoptosis was evaluated. When biofilms of C. albicans and C. dubliniensis were exposed to certain PUFAs there was an increase in unsaturation index of the cellular membranes and accumulation of intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS). This resulted in apoptosis, evidenced by reduced mitochondrial membrane potential and nuclear condensation and fragmentation. The most effective PUFA was stearidonic acid. The resultant cell death of both C. albicans and C. dubliniensis is due to apoptosis. Due to the increase in drug resistance, alternative antifungal drugs are needed. A group of natural antifungal compounds is PUFAs. However, understanding their mechanisms of action is important for further use and development of these compounds as antifungal drugs. This paper provides insight into a possible mode of action of antifungal PUFAs.Biochimica et Biophysica Acta 05/2012; 1820(10):1463-8. · 4.66 Impact Factor