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J Pept Sci. 2005 Nov;11(11):677-87.

Function and therapeutic potential of host defence peptides.

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Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Lower Mall Research Station, University of British Columbia, Canada.


Cationic host defence (antimicrobial) peptides are an important component of the innate immune systems of a wide variety of plants, animals, and bacteria. Although most of these compounds have direct antimicrobial activities under specific conditions, a greater appreciation for the diversity of functions of these molecules is beginning to develop in the field. In addition to their directly antimicrobial activities, they also have a broad spectrum of activity on the host immune system, with both pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory effects being invoked. Increasingly sophisticated approaches to understand the role of host defence peptides in modulating innate immunity are already serving to guide the development of novel therapeutics.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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