doi: 10.15389/agrobiology.2019.1.169eng

UDC 577.112:615.322

The authors are grateful to E.O. Zhabon for executed biological tests.
Supported by the Project No. 0112-2019-0002. Next-generation sequencing was supported by Russian Science Foundation under grant No. 16-16-00032.


THIONINS OF WHEAT Triticum kiharae Dorof. et Migush. ARE NOVEL POTENT INHIBITORS OF Candida albicans (C.P. Robin) Berkhout

M.P. Slezina, E.A. Istomina, T.I. Odintsova

Vavilov Institute of General Genetics RAS,3, ul. Gubkina, Moscow, 119333 Russia, e-mail,, (✉ corresponding author)

Slezina M.P.
Odintsova T.I.
Istomina E.A.

Received July 17, 2018


Plants serve as a source of biologically active compounds, the most important of which are antimicrobial peptides (AMPs). AMPs represent an integral part of the defense arsenal of all living beings. Members of the thionin family found only in plants are effective inhibitors of plant pathogens, including bacteria and fungi, which opens up prospects for their practical application as bio-pesticides to protect plants from diseases. However, the effect of thionins on animal and human pathogens has not been sufficiently studied. Yeast-like fungi of the genus Candida are opportunistic pathogenic microorganisms that occur in 70 % of people without causing disease (M. Dadar et al., 2018). However, in immune-compromised individuals, they can cause a number of serious diseases, the frequency of which has increased significantly in the last two decades. Antimycotics traditionally used to treat Candida infections are not always effective and safe for humans. In this regard, the world is constantly searching for new natural antifungal agents. The aim of this work was to isolate thionins from the kernels of the highly pathogen-resistant wheat species Triticum kiharae Dorof. et Migush., determine their primary structure, and assay antifungal activity against Candida albicans. For the first time from the wheat T. kiharae using chromatography on chitin and reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), 2 thionins Tk-AMP-BP and Tk-AMP-AP1 were isolated, and their amino acid sequences were determined by automated Edman degradation. The primary structure of Tk-AMP-BP was confirmed by transcriptome high-throughput sequencing (NGS) of wheat seedlings. The study of antimicrobial activity of Tk-AMP-BP showed that it has potent fungicidal effect on C. albicans cells at very low concentrations (MIC = 0.78 μg/ml). The biological activity of the wheat thionin against C. albicans was higher than that of thionins from other plant species. The results obtained in this work allow us to consider the wheat thionin as a promising molecule for the development on its basis of next-generation drugs to treat C. albicans infections.

Keywords: plant immunity, antimicrobial peptides, Triticum kiharae Dorof. et Migush., wheat species, thionins, mycoses, Candida albicans.




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