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Title: Potential use of antimicrobial peptides as vaginal spermicides/microbicides
Authors: Nongnuj Tanphaichitr
Nopparat Srakaew
Rhea Alonzi
Wongsakorn Kiattiburut
Kessiri Kongmanas
Ruina Zhi
Weihua Li
Mark Baker
Guanshun Wang
Duane Hickling
Ottawa Hospital Research Institute
University of Ottawa, Canada
Kasetsart University
Mahidol University
Fudan University
University of Newcastle, Australia
University of Nebraska Medical Center
Keywords: Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
Issue Date: 11-Mar-2016
Citation: Pharmaceuticals. Vol.9, No.1 (2016)
Abstract: © 2016 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. The concurrent increases in global population and sexually transmitted infection (STI) demand a search for agents with dual spermicidal and microbicidal properties for topical vaginal application. Previous attempts to develop the surfactant spermicide, nonoxynol-9 (N-9), into a vaginal microbicide were unsuccessful largely due to its inefficiency to kill microbes. Furthermore, N-9 causes damage to the vaginal epithelium, thus accelerating microbes to enter the women’s body. For this reason, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), naturally secreted by all forms of life as part of innate immunity, deserve evaluation for their potential spermicidal effects. To date, twelve spermicidal AMPs have been described including LL-37, magainin 2 and nisin A. Human cathelicidin LL-37 is the most promising spermicidal AMP to be further developed for vaginal use for the following reasons. First, it is a human AMP naturally produced in the vagina after intercourse. Second, LL-37 exerts microbicidal effects to numerous microbes including those that cause STI. Third, its cytotoxicity is selective to sperm and not to the female reproductive tract. Furthermore, the spermicidal effects of LL-37 have been demonstrated in vivo in mice. Therefore, the availability of LL-37 as a vaginal spermicide/microbicide will empower women for self-protection against unwanted pregnancies and STI.
ISSN: 14248247
Appears in Collections:Scopus 2016-2017

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