Lipopolysaccharide, a Key Molecule Involved in the Synergism between Temporins in Inhibiting Bacterial Growth and in Endotoxin Neutralization Academic Article uri icon

  • Overview
  • Research
  • Identity
  • Additional Document Info
  • View All


  • Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) is the major structural component of the outer membrane of Gram-negative bacteria and shields them from a variety of host defense factors, including antimicrobial peptides (AMPs). LPS is also recognized by immune cells as a pathogen-associated molecular pattern and stimulates them to secrete pro-inflammatory cytokines that, in extreme cases, lead to a harmful host response known as septic shock. Previous studies have revealed that a few isoforms of the AMP temporin, produced within the same frog specimen, can synergize to overcome bacterial resistance imposed by the physical barrier of LPS. Here we found that temporins can synergize in neutralizing the LPS-induced macrophage activation. Furthermore, the synergism between temporins, to overcome the protective function of LPS as well as its endotoxic effect, depends on the length of the polysaccharide chain of LPS. Importantly, mode of action studies, using spectroscopic and thermodynamic methods, have pointed out different mechanisms underlying the synergism of temporins in antimicrobial and anti-endotoxin activities. To the best of our knowledge, such a dual synergism between isoforms of AMPs from the same species has not been observed before, and it might explain the ability of such amphibians to resist a large repertoire of microorganisms.


  • Mangoni, Maria Luisa
  • Epand, Raquel F
  • Rosenfeld, Yosef
  • Peleg, Adi
  • Barra, Donatella
  • Epand, Richard
  • Shai, Yechiel

publication date

  • August 2008

has subject area