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Pharmaceuticals (Basel). 2010 Apr 19;3(4):1139-1161.

Lysostaphin: A Staphylococcal Bacteriolysin with Potential Clinical Applications.

Author information

1
Departamento de Microbiologia Geral, Instituto de Microbiologia Prof. Paulo de Góes, CCS, Bloco I, UFRJ, 21941-590, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil. mcbastos@micro.ufrj.br.
2
Departamento de Microbiologia Geral, Instituto de Microbiologia Prof. Paulo de Góes, CCS, Bloco I, UFRJ, 21941-590, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil. coutinhobg@gmail.com.
3
Departamento de Microbiologia Geral, Instituto de Microbiologia Prof. Paulo de Góes, CCS, Bloco I, UFRJ, 21941-590, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil. mcvarella@yahoo.com.br.

Abstract

Lysostaphin is an antimicrobial agent belonging to a major class of antimicrobial peptides and proteins known as the bacteriocins. Bacteriocins are bacterial antimicrobial peptides which generally exhibit bactericidal activity against other bacteria. Bacteriocin production is a self-protection mechanism that helps the microorganisms to survive in their natural habitats. Bacteriocins are currently distributed into three main classes. Staphylococcins are bacteriocins produced by staphylococci, which are Gram-positive bacteria of medical and veterinary importance. Lysostaphin is the only class III staphylococcin described so far. It exhibits a high degree of antistaphylococcal bacteriolytic activity, being inactive against bacteria of all other genera. Infections caused by staphylococci continue to be a problem worldwide not only in healthcare environments but also in the community, requiring effective measures for controlling their spread. Since lysostaphin kills human and animal staphylococcal pathogens, it has potential biotechnological applications in the treatment of staphylococcal infections. In vitro and in vivo studies performed with lysostaphin have shown that this staphylococcin has potential to be used, solely or in combination with other antibacterial agents, to prevent or treat bacterial staphylococcal infectious diseases.

KEYWORDS:

antimicrobial peptides; bacteriocins; lysostaphin; staphylococci; staphylococcins

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