Study provides new way to develop unconventional anticancer strategies

Study provides new way to develop unconventional anticancer strategies

Reviewed by Emily Henderson, B.Sc.Nov 20 2020

Announcing a new article publication for BIO Integration journal.

There is considerable interest in a new class of anticancer molecules that is currently still under investigation termed the cationic antimicrobial peptides (AMPs). AMPs are a group of pervasive components of innate immunity that can be found throughout all classes of life.

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The small innate peptides cover a broad spectrum of antibacterial activities due to their electrostatic interactions with the negatively charged bacterial membrane.

Compared with normal cells, cancer cells have increased proportions of negatively charged molecules, including phosphatidylserine, glycoproteins, and glycolipids, on the outer plasma membrane. This provides an opportunity for exploiting the interaction between AMPs and negatively charged cell membranes in developing unconventional anticancer strategies.

Some AMPs may also be categorized into a group of potential anticancer agents called cationic anticancer peptides (ACPs) due to their relative selectivity in cell membrane penetration and lysis, which is similar to their interaction with bacterial membranes.

The authors review several examples of ACPs that are used in tumor therapy for their ability in penetrating or lysing tumor cell membrane and discuss recent advances and challenges in the application of ACPs.

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