Antibacterial peptides for therapeutic use: obstacles and realistic outlook

Alexandra K. Marr, William J. Gooderham, Robert Hancock

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

722 Citations (Scopus)


Cationic antimicrobial peptides are produced by almost all species of life as a component of their immediate non-specific defense against infections. The assets of these peptides in clinical application include their potential for broad-spectrum activity, rapid bactericidal activity and low propensity for resistance development, whereas possible disadvantages include their high cost, limited stability (especially when composed of L-amino acids), and unknown toxicology and pharmacokinetics. Initial barriers to their success are being increasingly overcome with the development of stable, more cost-effective and potent broad-spectrum synthetic peptides. Thus, there is hope that they will spawn a new generation of antimicrobials with a broad range of topical and systemic applications against infections.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)468-472
Number of pages5
JournalCurrent Opinion in Pharmacology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2006
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Pharmacology

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