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FEBS Lett. 2000 Oct 20;483(2-3):135-8.

Induction of synthesis of an antimicrobial peptide in the skin of the freeze-tolerant frog, Rana sylvatica, in response to environmental stimuli.

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Department of Biomedical Sciences, Creighton University School of Medicine, Omaha, NE 68178-0405, USA.


An extract of skin taken from specimens of the freeze-tolerant wood frog, Rana sylvatica, that were collected from cold (<7 degrees C) ponds and maintained at 5 degrees C lacked detectable antimicrobial activity. In contrast, an extract of skin taken from specimens maintained at 30 degrees C for 3 weeks under laboratory conditions contained a high concentration (approximately 4 nmol/g) of a single antimicrobial peptide of the brevinin-1 family (FLPVVAGLAAKVLPSIICAVTKKC). The peptide inhibited growth of Escherichia coli (minimum inhibitory concentration 45 microM) and Staphylococcus aureus (minimum inhibitory concentration 7 microM). The data suggest that synthesis of the peptide is induced when the animal is in an environment that promotes the growth of microorganisms consistent with a role in the animal's defense strategy.

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