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There are abundant antimicrobial peptides in brains of two kinds of Bombina toads.

Liu R., Liu H., Ma Y., Wu J., Yang H., Ye H., Lai R.

It is well-known that there is a large amount of antimicrobial peptides in amphibian skins but few antimicrobial peptides are found in amphibian brains. Twenty-two and four antimicrobial peptides were purified and characterized from the brain homogenate of Bombina maxima and B. microdeladigitora, respectively. One hundred fifty-eight cDNA clones encoding 79 antimicrobial peptides were isolated from brain cDNA libraries of B. maxima and B. microdeladigitora. These antimicrobial peptides belong to two peptide groups (maximin and maximin-H). Twenty of them are identical to previously reported antimicrobial peptides (maximin 1-8, 10, 11, maximin H1, 3-5, 7, 9, 10, 12, 15, 16) from B. maxima skin secretions. Fifty-nine of them are novel antimicrobial peptides. Some of these antimicrobial peptides showed strong antimicrobial activities against tested microorganism strains including Gram-positive and -negative bacteria and fungi. The current diversity in peptide coding cDNA sequences is, to our knowledge, the most extreme yet described for any animal brains. The extreme diversity may give rise to interest to prospect the actual functions of antimicrobial peptides in amphibian brains.

J Proteome Res 10:1806-1815(2011) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]

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