Characterization and antimicrobial evaluation ofSpPR-AMP1, a proline-rich antimicrobial peptide from the mud crabScylla paramamosain

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Antimicrobial peptide (AMP) is an important molecule in the innate immune system. Here, we report the cloning and functional studies of proline-rich AMPs (PR-AMPs) from the three species of mud crab: Scylla paramamosain, S. serrata, and the swimming crab Portunus pelagicus. The deduced peptides revealed that they contain the putative signal peptides and encode for mature peptides, which contain sequence architecture similar to a 6.5-kDa proline-rich AMP of the shore crab, Carcinus maenas which showed similarity with the bactenecin7. Tissue distribution analysis indicated that the SpPR-AMP1 was expressed in a wide range of adult tissues, with the highest expression levels in the crab hemocyte. Challenge experiments showed that the levels of SpPR-AMP1 mRNA expression were up-regulated in the hemocyte after peptidoglycan stimulation. To evaluate the biological properties of mature SpPR-AMP1, peptides were chemically synthesized and recombinantly expressed. SpPR-AMP1 showed strong antibacterial activity against both Gram-positive bacteria Micrococcus luteus and Gram-negative bacteria Vibrio harveyi. The results indicate that the SpPR-AMP1 plays a role in crab immunity.

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