The therapeutic potential of cationic peptides

Robert Hancock

Research output: Contribution to journalShort surveypeer-review

44 Citations (Scopus)


Novel classes of antibiotics that are useful against resistant bacteria are a major need in human medicine. Cationic antimicrobial peptides are utilised as nature's antibiotics, being produced constitutively or in response to infection in virtually every type or organism from plants and insects to man. Thus, these peptides are now being considered as potential antibiotics for infections. They have the following assets: structural diversity, rapid bactericidal action, a broad spectrum of activity that includes most of the clinically important resistant pathogens, and several ancilliary activities which can include antifungal, antiviral, anti-endotoxin activities, and promotion of wound healing. Cationic peptides and proteins are now proceeding through clinical trials as topical antibiotics and anti-endotoxins.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)167-174
Number of pages8
JournalExpert Opinion on Investigational Drugs
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished or Issued - 12 Feb 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Anti-endotoxin
  • Anti-fungal
  • Antibiotics
  • Antimicrobial peptides
  • Neuprex
  • Nisin
  • Peptides
  • Synergy
  • Systemic
  • Topical
  • Wound healing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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