Potential Therapeutic Application of Host Defense Peptides

  • Lijuan Zhang
  • Timothy J. Falla
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 618)


Host defense peptides (HDPs) are relatively small, mostly cationic, amphipathic, and of variable length, sequence, and structure. The majority of these peptides exhibit broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity and often activity against viruses and some cancer cell lines. In addition, HDPs also provide a range of immunomodulatory activities related to innate immunity defense, inflammation, and wound healing. The development of these multi-faceted molecules and their bioactivities into clinically important therapeutics is being pursued using a number of different approaches. Here we review the role of HDPs in nature and application of this role to the development of novel therapeutics.

Key words

Host defense peptides HDPs antimicrobial peptides anti-infectives antifungals anti-sepsis topical therapeutics immunomodulators 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lijuan Zhang
    • 1
  • Timothy J. Falla
    • 1
  1. 1.Helix Biomedix Inc.BothellUSA

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