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FEMS Microbiol Lett. 1997 Apr 1;149(1):59-64.

Fabatins: new antimicrobial plant peptides.

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Department of Biology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge 02139, USA.


Two new antimicrobial peptides related to the gamma-thionine family have been isolated by acid extraction from the broad bean Vicia faba. The extract was separated by ion exchange chromatography, and a fraction showing antibacterial activity was further purified by reverse-phase HPLC. Material from a single HPLC peak was sequenced and revealed the presence of two peptides differing by one amino acid. The peptides were named fabatins. They are 47 amino acids long, have an overall positive charge and contain 8 cysteines that probably form 4 disulfide bridges characteristic of the gamma-thionins. Fabatins were active against both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria, but were inactive against the yeasts Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Candida albicans.

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