The Role of Antimicrobial Peptides at the Ocular Surface

McDermott, Alison (2009) The Role of Antimicrobial Peptides at the Ocular Surface. Ophthalmic Research, 41 (2). pp. 60-75. ISSN 0030-3747

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Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) such as defensins and cathelicidins are small peptides with broad-spectrum activity against bacteria, fungi and viruses. In addition, several AMPs modulate mammalian cell behaviours including migration, proliferation and cytokine production. This review describes findings from recent studies showing the presence of various AMPs at the human ocular surface and discusses their mechanism of antimicrobial action and potential non-microbicidal roles. Corneal and conjunctival epithelial cells produce β-defensins and the cathelicidin LL-37, whereas neutrophils, infiltrating in response to a specific stimulus, supply additional LL-37 as well as α-defensins. In vitro studies suggest that LL-37 and human β-defensin-3 are the most likely to have significant independent antimicrobial activity, while other AMPs may act synergistically to help protect the ocular surface from invading pathogens. Current evidence also supports a role for some AMPs in modulating wound healing responses. Although yet to be brought to fruition, AMPs hold significant potential as therapeutic agents for the prophylaxis and treatment of infection, promotion of wound healing and immune modulation.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Defensin, Cathelicidin, LL-37, Infection, Wound healing
Subjects: B500 Ophthalmics
Department: Faculties > Health and Life Sciences > Applied Sciences
Depositing User: Becky Skoyles
Date Deposited: 23 May 2017 15:15
Last Modified: 12 Oct 2019 18:25

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