Despite their high potency, the widespread implementation of natural antimicrobial peptides is still challenging due to their low scalability and high hemolytic activities. Herein, we address these issues by employing a modular approach to mimic the key amino acid residues present in antimicrobial peptides, such as lysine, leucine, and serine, but on the highly biocompatible poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) backbone. A series of these PEG-based peptides (PEGtides) were developed using functional epoxide monomers, corresponding to each key amino acid, with several possessing highly potent bactericidal activities and controlled selectivities, with respect to their hemolytic behavior. The critical role of the composition and the structure of the PEGtides in their selectivities was further supported by coarse-grained molecular dynamic simulations. This modular approach is anticipated to provide the design principles necessary for the future development of antimicrobial polymers.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was primarily supported by Samsung Research Funding & Incubation Center of Samsung Electronics under Project Number SRFC-MA1602-07. This work was also supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF-2021R1A2C3004978, NRF-2020R1A2C2012158, and NRF-2021R1A2C3009955).
© 2021 American Chemical Society.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Science(all)
- Physics and Astronomy(all)