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Pro-apoptotic effect of cecropin AD on nasopharyngeal carcinoma cells.

Biotechnology Research Center, Key Laboratory of Gene Engineering, Ministry of Education, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510275, China.
Chinese medical journal (Impact Factor: 0.9). 07/2006; 119(12):1042-6.
Source: PubMed
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    ABSTRACT: Cecropin AD, a chimeric antimicrobial peptide obtained from cecropins, is effective at killing specific microorganisms. However, a highly efficient expression system is still needed to allow for commercial application of cecropin AD. For the exogenous expression of cecropin AD, we fused the cecropin AD gene with a small ubiquitin-like modifier (SUMO) gene and a signal peptide of SacB, while a Bacillus subtilis expression system was constructed based on Bacillus subtilis cells genetically modified by the introduction of an operon including an isopropyl-beta-D-thiogalactopyranoside (IPTG)-inducible Spac promoter, a signal peptide of amyQ, and the SUMO protease gene. The recombinant cecropin AD was expressed, and 30.6 mg of pure recombinant protein was purified from 1 liter of culture supernatant. The purified cecropin AD displayed antimicrobial activity against some pathogens, such as Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli, and was especially effective toward Staphylococcus aureus, with MICs of <0.05 microM (0.2 microg/ml). Stability analysis results showed that the activity of cecropin AD was not influenced by temperatures as high as 55 degrees C for 20 min; however, temperatures above 85 degrees C (for 20 min) decreased the antimicrobial activity of cecropin AD. Varying the pH from 4.0 to 9.0 did not appear to affect the activity of cecropin AD, but some loss of potency was observed at pH values lower than pH 4.0. Under the challenge of several proteases (proteinase K, trypsin, and pepsin), cecropin AD maintained functional activity. The results indicated that the recombinant product expressed by the designed Bacillus subtilis expression system was a potent antimicrobial agent and could be applied to control infectious diseases of farm animals or even humans.
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