Studies on citrullinated LL-37: detection in human airways, antibacterial effects and biophysical properties: detection in human airways, antibacterial effects and biophysical properties

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Arginine residues of the antimicrobial peptide LL-37 can be citrullinated by peptidyl arginine deiminases, which reduce the positive charge of the peptide. Notably, citrullinated LL-37 has not yet been detected in human samples. In addition, functional and biophysical properties of citrullinated LL-37 are not fully explored. The aim of this study was to detect citrullinated LL-37 in human bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid and to determine antibacterial and biophysical properties of citrullinated LL-37. BAL fluid was obtained from healthy human volunteers after intra-bronchial exposure to lipopolysaccharide. Synthetic peptides were used for bacterial killing assays, transmission electron microscopy, isothermal titration calorimetry, mass-spectrometry and circular dichroism. Using targeted proteomics, we were able to detect both native and citrullinated LL-37 in BAL fluid. The citrullinated peptide did not kill Escherichia coli nor lysed human red blood cells. Both peptides had similar α-helical secondary structures but citrullinated LL-37 was more stable at higher temperatures, as shown by circular dichroism. In conclusion, citrullinated LL-37 is present in the human airways and citrullination impaired bacterial killing, indicating that a net positive charge is important for antibacterial and membrane lysing effects. It is possible that citrullination serves as a homeostatic regulator of AMP-function by alteration of key functions.

اللغة الأصليةEnglish
رقم المقال2376
دوريةScientific Reports
مستوى الصوت10
رقم الإصدار1
المعرِّفات الرقمية للأشياء
حالة النشرPublished - فبراير 11 2020

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