Abbreviated Journal Title
J. Biol. Chem.
RHESUS THETA-DEFENSIN-1 RTD-1; TRUNCATED ALPHA-DEFENSINS; ANTIMICROBIAL; PEPTIDES; MACAQUE LEUKOCYTES; HIV-1; BETA; RETROCYCLIN; INHIBIT; FUSION; VIRUS; Biochemistry & Molecular Biology
theta-Defensins, the only cyclic peptides of animal origin, have been isolated from the leukocytes of rhesus macaques and baboons. Their biogenesis is unusual because each peptide is an 18-residue chimera formed by the head-to-tail splicing of nonapeptides derived from two separate precursors. theta-Defensins have multiple arginines and a ladder-like tridisulfide array spanning their two antiparallel beta-strands. Human theta-defensin genes contain a premature stop codon that prevents effective translation of the needed precursors; consequently, these peptides are not present in human leukocytes. Synthetic theta-defensins with sequences that correspond to those encoded within the human pseudogenes are called retrocyclins. Retrocyclin-1 inhibits the cellular entry of HIV-1, HSV, and influenza A virus. The rhesus theta-defensin RTD-1 protects mice from an experimental severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus infection, and retrocyclin- 1 protects mice from infection by Bacillus anthracis spores. The small size, unique structure, and multiple host defense activities of theta-defensins make them intriguing potential therapeutic agents.
Journal of Biological Chemistry
Lehrer, Robert I.; Cole, Alex M.; and Selsted, Michael E., "theta-Defensins: Cyclic Peptides with Endless Potential" (2012). Faculty Bibliography 2010s. 2923.