Ribosomally synthesized antimicrobial peptides have very wide killing spectra and bacterial resistance to these peptides seems to be a rare phenomenon. Indolicidin is a ribosomally synthesized antimicrobial peptide that served as a template to omiganan, which is in development for the prevention of catheter-related bloodstream infections; clinical trials also proved its efficiency against acne vulgaris. Omiganan is the most advanced molecule in the front line of clinical applications of antimicrobial peptides. The mode and site of action of omiganan are not yet settled although its interaction with membranes is known to play a fundamental role. The biochemical and biophysical foundations for the action of indolicidin and its analogues are reviewed in this paper, as well as the clinical application of omiganan. The in vitro efficiency tests and the outcome of clinical trials are addressed. Altogether, despite the very specific use of omiganan as a topical antibiotic, it has the potential of being a pioneer of a new generation of antibiotics that carry the promise of ending the multi-resistance problem.
Centro de Química e Bioquímica, Faculdade de Ciências, Universidade de Lisboa, Campo Grande C8, 1749-016 Lisboa, Portugal.
Publication date: June 1, 2006
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Recent Patents on Anti-Infective Drug Discovery publishes review articles on recent patents in the field of anti-infective drug discovery e.g. on novel bioactive compounds, analogs & targets. A selection of important and recent patents on anti-infective drug discovery is also included in the journal. The journal is essential reading for all researchers involved in anti-infective drug design and discovery.