Model membrane studies for characterization of different antibiotic activities of lipopeptides from Pseudomonas

K. Reder-Christ, Y. Schmidt, M. Dörr, H.G. Sahl, J. Raaijmakers, H. Gross, M. Josten, G. Bendas

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39 Citations (Scopus)


Lipopeptides (LPs) are a structurally diverse class of amphipathic natural products that were in the past mainly known for their surfactant properties. However, the recent discovery of their antimicrobial and cytotoxic bioactivities have fueled and renewed the interest in this compound class. Propelled by the antimicrobial potential of this compound class, in this study a range of six underinvestigated LPs from Pseudomonads were examined with respect to their antibiotic activities towards bacteria. The assays revealed that only the glycosylated lipodipeptide SB-253514, produced by Pseudomonas strain SH-C52, showed significant antibacterial activity. Since the bioactivity of LPs is commonly attributed to membrane interactions, we analyzed the molecular interactions between the LPs and bacteria-like lipid model membranes in more detail via complementary biophysical approaches. Application of the quartz crystal microbalance (QCM) showed that all LPs possess a high binding affinity towards the model membranes. Despite their similar membrane affinity, monolayer studies displayed different tendencies of LPs to incorporate into the membrane. The degree of membrane incorporation could be correlated with specific structural features of the investigated LPs, such as distance between the peptidic macrocycle and the fatty acid, but did not fully reflect their respective antibacterial activity. Cyclic voltammetry (CV) experiments further demonstrated that SB-253514 showed no membrane permeabilization effects at inhibitory concentrations. Collectively, these results suggests that the antibacterial activity of SB-253514 cannot be explained by an unspecific detergent-like mechanism generally proposed for amphiphilic molecules but instead appears to occur via a defined structural target.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)566-573
JournalBiochimica et Biophysica Acta. Biomembranes
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • red-blood-cells
  • versatile soil bacterium
  • complete genome sequence
  • bilayer-lipid membranes
  • syringae pv. syringae
  • syringomycin-e
  • mycobacterium-smegmatis
  • cyclic lipodepsipeptides
  • biosensor techniques
  • fluorescens

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