Peptidomic analysis of the host-defense peptides in skin secretions of the Amazon River frog Lithobates palmipes (Ranidae)

Milena Mechkarska, G Barran, J Kolodziejek, L Coquet, J Leprince, T Jouenne, N Nowotny, John Michael Conlon

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Skin secretions of certain frog species represent a source of host-defense peptides (HDPs) with therapeutic potential and their primary structures provide insight into taxonomic and phylogenetic relationships. Peptidomic analysis was used to characterize the HDPs in norepinephrine-stimulated skin secretions from the Amazon River frog Lithobates palmipes (Ranidae) collected in Trinidad. A total of ten peptides were purified and identified on the basis of amino acid similarity as belonging to the ranatuerin-2 family (ranatuerin-2PMa, -2PMb, -2PMc, and-2PMd), the brevinin-1 family (brevinin-1PMa, -1PMb, -1PMc and des(8–14)brevinin-1PMa) and the temporin family (temporin-PMa in C-terminally amidated and non-amidated forms). Deletion of the sequence VAAKVLP from brevinin-1PMa (FLPLIAGVAAKVLPKIFCAISKKC) in des[(8–14)brevinin-1PMa resulted in a 10-fold decrease in potency against Staphylococcus aureus (MIC = 31 μM compared with 3 μM) and a > 50-fold decrease in hemolytic activity but potency against Echerichia coli was maintained (MIC = 62.5 μM compared with 50 μM). Temporin-PMa (FLPFLGKLLSGIF.NH 2) inhibited growth of S. aureus (MIC = 16 μM) but the non-amidated form of the peptide lacked antimicrobial activity. Cladistic analysis based upon the primary structures of ranaturerin-2 peptides supports the division of New World frogs of the family Ranidae into the genera Lithobates and Rana. A sister-group relationship between L. palmipes and Warszewitsch's frog Lithobates warszewitschii is indicated within a clade that includes the Tarahumara frog Lithobates tarahumarae. The study has provided further evidence that peptidomic analysis of HDPs in frog skin secretions is a valuable approach to elucidation of the evolutionary history of species within a particular genus.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101069
Pages (from-to)101069
JournalComparative Biochemistry and Physiology - Part D: Genomics and Proteomics
Early online date24 Feb 2023
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 30 Jun 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Experimental work was supported by a Campus Research & Publication grant (CRP.5.OCT18.66) and a travel grant (CRP.5.OCT19.94 awarded to GB from the School for Graduate Studies and Research, The University of the West Indies, St. Augustine Campus. A Study and Travel grant and Institutional Visit Allowance were awarded to MM. The authors thank Rainer Deo and Hukaymah Ali from West Indian Herping (Trinidad and Tobago) for providing expert advice and assistance during the field trip to collect frogs.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 The Author(s)


  • Host-defense peptide
  • Antimicorbial
  • Frog skin
  • Brevinin-1
  • Ranatuerin-2
  • Temporin
  • Antimicrobial


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