Antibiotic proteins of human polymorphonuclear leukocytes Academic Article uri icon


MeSH Major

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Blood Proteins
  • Neutrophils


  • Nine polypeptide peaks with antibiotic activity were resolved from human polymorphonuclear leukocyte azurophil granule membranes. All but 1 of the 12 constituent polypeptides were identified by N-terminal sequence analysis. Near quantitative recovery of protein and activity permitted an assessment of the contribution of each species to the overall respiratory-burst-independent antimicrobial capacity of the cell. Three uncharacterized polypeptides were discovered, including two broad-spectrum antibiotics. One of these, a defensin that we have designated human neutrophil antimicrobial peptide 4, was more potent than previously described defensins but represented less than 1% of the total protein. The other, named azurocidin, was abundant and comparable to bactericidal permeability-increasing factor in its contribution to the killing of Escherichia coli.

publication date

  • January 1989



  • Academic Article



  • eng

PubMed Central ID

  • PMC297672

PubMed ID

  • 2501794

Additional Document Info

start page

  • 5610

end page

  • 4


  • 86


  • 14