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Biochim Biophys Acta. 1987 May 29;899(2):159-70.

Structure-activity relationship of gramicidin S analogues on membrane permeability.


The previous study of the action of gramicidin S on bacteria (Katsu, T., Kobayashi, H. and Fujita, Y. (1986) Biochim. Biophys. Acta 860, 608-619) prompted us to investigate further the structure-activity relationship of the gramicidin S analogues on membrane permeability. Two types of the gramicidin S analogues were used in the present study: (1) cyclo(-X-D-Leu-D-Lys-D-Leu-L-Pro-)2, where X = Gly, D-Leu and D-cyclohexylalanine (D-cHxAla); (2) N,N'-diacetyl derivative of gramicidin S (diacetyl-gramicidin S) which lacks a cationic moiety of gramicidin S. All the analogues have a beta-sheet conformation as gramicidin S. The following cellular systems were used: Staphylococcus aureus as Gram-positive bacteria, Escherichia coli as Gram-negative bacteria, human erythrocytes, rat liver mitochondria and artificial liposomal membranes. It was found that gramicidin S and one of the type 1 analogues having X = D-cHxAla induced the efflux of K+ through the cytoplasmic membrane of all types of the cells. In addition, these two peptides had the ability to lower the phase transition temperature of dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine. Accordingly, it was concluded that, if peptides can expand greatly the membrane structure of neutral lipids which constitute main parts of the biological membrane, they can stimulate the permeability of cells without any selectivity. The action of the type 2 peptide, diacetyl-gramicidin S, was strongly cell dependent. Although this peptide stimulated the efflux of K+ from mitochondria, it did not do so efficiently, if at all, from S. aureus, E. coli and erythrocytes. In experiments using liposomes, diacetyl-gramicidin S increased markedly the permeability of liposomes composed of egg phosphatidylcholine. The presence of egg phosphatidylethanolamine or cholesterol reduced its activity. These results on liposomes explained well the low sensitivity of diacetyl-gramicidin S against E. coli and erythrocytes in terms of lipid constituents of the membranes. The mechanism of action of diacetyl-gramicidin S was discussed from the formation of a boundary lipid induced by this peptide.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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