Send to

Choose Destination
Biochimie. 2017 Jun;137:29-34. doi: 10.1016/j.biochi.2017.02.013. Epub 2017 Feb 27.

Investigations into the potential anticancer activity of Maximin H5.

Author information

School of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences, University of Central Lancashire, Preston PR1 2HE, UK.
School of Forensic and Investigative Science, University of Central Lancashire, Preston PR1 2HE, UK.
School of Applied Science, London South Bank University, 103 Borough Road, London SE1 0AA, UK. Electronic address:


Here we report the first major example of anionic amphibian host defence peptides (HDPs) with anticancer activity. Maximin H5 (MH5N) is a C-terminally amidated, anionic host defence peptide from toads of the Bombina genus, which was shown to possess activity against the glioma cell line, T98G (EC50 = 125 μM). The peptide adopted high levels of α-helical structure (57.3%) in the presence of model cancer membranes (DMPC:DMPS in a molar ratio of 10:1). MH5N also showed a strong ability to penetrate these model membranes (Π = 10.5 mN m-1), which correlated with levels of DMPS (R2 > 0.98). Taken with the high ability of the peptide to lyse these membranes (65.7%), it is proposed that maximin H5 kills cancer cells via membranolytic mechanisms that are promoted by anionic lipid. It was also found that C-terminally deaminated maximin H5 (MH5C) exhibited lower levels of α-helical structure in the presence of cancer membrane mimics (44.8%) along with a reduced ability to penetrate these membranes (Π = 8.1 mN m-1) and induce their lysis (56.6%). These data suggested that the two terminal amide groups of native maximin H5 are required for its optimal membranolytic and anticancer activity.


Anticancer activity; Host defence peptides; Lipid monolayers; Maximin H5; Membranolytic; α-Helical peptide

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center