Probiotics and Antimicrobial Proteins

, Volume 5, Issue 3, pp 187–194 | Cite as

Molecular Characterisation and Phylogenetic Analysis of a Novel Isoform of Hepatic Antimicrobial Peptide, Hepcidin (Zc-hepc1), from the Coral Fish Moorish idol, Zanclus cornutus (Linnaeus, 1758)

  • E. R. Chaithanya
  • Rosamma PhilipEmail author
  • Naveen Sathyan
  • P. R. Anil Kumar
  • Sherine Sonia Cubelio
  • I. S. Bright Singh


Hepcidin is a family of short cysteine-rich antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) participating in various physiological functions with inevitable role in host immune responses. Present study deals with identification and characterisation of a novel hepcidin isoform from coral fish Zanclus cornutus. The 81 amino acid (aa) preprohepcidin obtained from Z. cornutus consists of a hydrophobic aa rich 22 mer signal peptide, a highly variable proregion of 35 aa and a bioactive mature peptide with 8 conserved cysteine residues which contribute to the disulphide back bone. The mature hepcidin, Zc-hepc1 has a theoretical isoelectric point of 7.46, a predicted molecular weight of 2.43 kDa and a net positive charge of +1. Phylogenetic analysis grouped Z. cornutus hepcidin with HAMP2 group hepcidins confirming the divergent evolution of hepcidin-like peptide in fishes. Zc-hepc1 can attain a β-hairpin-like structure with two antiparallel β-sheets. This is the first report of an AMP from the coral fish Z. cornutus.


Antimicrobial peptide Moorish idol Zanclus cornutus Hepcidin Coral fish Innate immunity 



The authors are grateful to the Director, Centre for Marine Living Resources and Ecology (CMLRE) and Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES), Govt. of India for the research grant (MoES/10-MLR/2/2007) and scientific/technical support for the work. Thanks are due to the crew of the research vessel ORV Sagar Sakthi (Central Institute of Fishery Technology, Kochi) for providing live specimen of Moorish idol and Mr. Vinu Jacob, Research scholar, Department of Marine Biology Microbiology and Biochemistry, CUSAT, Kochi-16 for the assistance in the taxonomic identification of the fish.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. R. Chaithanya
    • 1
  • Rosamma Philip
    • 1
    Email author
  • Naveen Sathyan
    • 1
  • P. R. Anil Kumar
    • 1
  • Sherine Sonia Cubelio
    • 2
  • I. S. Bright Singh
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Marine Biology, Microbiology and Biochemistry, School of Marine SciencesCochin University of Science and TechnologyKochiIndia
  2. 2.Centre for Marine Living Resources and EcologyMinistry of Earth Sciences, Government of IndiaKochiIndia
  3. 3.National Centre for Aquatic Animal HealthCochin University of Science and TechnologyKochiIndia

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