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antimicrobial peptides; defensin; crustin

Anchalee Tassanakajon, Kunlaya Somboonwiwat, Piti Amparyup
Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are evolutionarily ancient molecules that act as the key components in the invertebrate innate immunity against invading pathogens. Several AMPs have been identified and characterized in invertebrates, and found to display considerable diversity in their amino acid sequence, structure and biological activity. AMP genes appear to have rapidly evolved, which might have arisen from the co-evolutionary arms race between host and pathogens, and enabled organisms to survive in different microbial environments...
February 2015: Developmental and Comparative Immunology
Zhenting Zhang, Shunyi Zhu
Ants, as eusocial insects, live in dense groups with high connectivity, increasing the risk of pathogen spread and possibly driving the evolution of their antimicrobial immune system. Draft genomes of seven ant species provide a new source to undertake comparative study of their antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), key components of insect innate immunity. By using computational approaches, we analyzed five AMP families that include abaecins, hymenoptaecins, insect defensins, tachystatins, and crustins in ants, which comprise 69 new members...
October 2012: Developmental and Comparative Immunology
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