Insights into the antibacterial and immunomodulatory functions of the antimicrobial peptide, epinecidin-1, againstVibrio vulnificusinfection in zebrafish

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Abstract

In the present study, we used Vibrio vulnificus and a zebrafish model system to investigate the inhibitory effect of epinecidin-1 on acute bacterial infection and studied the impacts of pretreatment, co-treatment, and post-treatment with epinecidin-1 on its protective efficacy. In vivo experiments showed that co-treatment with epinecidin-1 and V. vulnificus achieved 78%–97% survival rates after 30 days. When epinecidin-1 and V. vulnificus were co-injected into zebrafish and zebrafish were re-challenged with V. vulnificus after 30 days, zebrafish had survival rates of 22%–47%. Pretreatment and post-treatment with epinecidin-1 obtained respective survival rates of 57% and 60%. In addition, epinecidin-1 modulated the expressions of immune-responsive genes like interleukin (IL)-10, IL-1b, tumor necrosis factor-α, and interferon-γ as analyzed by a microarray and qPCR approach. This study demonstrates the use of epinecidin-1 to develop inactivated material for fish bacterial infections which can provide guidelines for the future design of epinecidin-1-bacterial formulations for various in vivo applications.

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