Myristic acid-modified thymopentin for enhanced plasma stability and immune-modulating activity
Natural albumin ligand (fatty acids)-conjugated peptides can rapidly bind to circulating albumin and form complexes to control the release of peptides. The purpose of this study was to prolong the half-life and immune-modulating effects of thymopentin (TP5) by using the albumin binding strategy. We synthesized myristic acid-modified TP5 (TP5-MA) by conjugating a myristic acid-acylated lysine to a permissive site of TP5, which improved the albumin binding affinity of TP5-MA and dramatically enhanced its stability in human plasma. We observed well-preserved bioactivities of TP5-MA in RAW264.7 macrophages using a tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α stimulation assay. Moreover, the prolonged immune-modulating effect of TP5-MA was confirmed by the normalized CD4+/CD8+ ratio in immune-depressed rat models, which resulted in a reduced administration frequency (twice per week). In general, the enhanced pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic properties of TP5-MA make it a promising product for the treatment of immunodeficiency diseases.