Biosynthesis of the Lantibiotic Pep5 and Mode of Action of Type A Lantibiotics

  • H.-G. Sahl
Conference paper
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (volume 65)

Abstract

Lantibiotics are a group of bacteriocin-like peptides produced by Gram-positive bacteria which differ from all other bacteriocins by their content of didehydroamino acids (dehydroalanine and dehydrobutyrine) and thioether amino acids (lanthionine and 3-methyllanthionine). Currently, two types of lantibiotics are distinguished: Type A which comprises elongated, screw-shaped, amphipathic peptides with molecular masses of more than 2100 Da (Pep5, subtilin, epidermin, gallidermin and the widely used food preservative nisin) and type B lantibiotics which are of globular shape and have molecular masses of 1800 to 2100 Da (cinnamycin, several closely related duramycins and ancovenin). Type A lantibiotics are produced by bacilli, staphylococci, streptococci and lactococci and show strong antimicrobial activities based on formation of short-lived channels in energized membranes; type B lantibiotics are produced by streptomycetes and display less pronounced antibacterial activities but interesting other biological activities instead. For detailed reading on lantibiotics see Jung & Sahl (1991).

Keywords

Bacillus Dehydration Staphylococcus Threonine Phosphatidylcholine 

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References

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • H.-G. Sahl
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Medical Microbiology and ImmunologyUniversity of BonnBonn-VenusbergGermany

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