The biological action of several X-Phe-D-Leu-Phe-D-Leu-Z (X=3',5'-dimethylphenyl-ureido; Z=Phe, Lys, Glu, Tyr) analogues was analysed on human neutrophils to evaluate their ability to antagonize formyl-peptide receptors. X-Phe-D-Leu-Phe-D-Leu-Phe analogues obtained as C-terminal olo or amido derivatives and T-Phe-D-Leu-Phe-D-Leu-Phe analogues (T=thiazolyl-ureido) were also analysed. The activities of pentapeptide derivatives were compared with those of X-Phe-D-Leu-Phe-D-Leu-Phe chosen as reference antagonist. Our results demonstrate that X-Phe-D-Leu-Phe-D-Leu-Phe-olo, X-Phe-D-Leu-Phe-D-Leu-Glu and X-Phe-D-Leu-Phe-D-Leu-Tyr are more active antagonists than X-Phe-D-Leu-Phe-D-Leu-Phe. The presence of Lys (X-Phe-D-Leu-Phe-D-Leu-Lys) seems, instead, to inhibit the formyl-peptide receptor antagonist properties. The presence of the N-terminal thiazolyl-ureido group seems to considerably contribute to the receptor antagonist properties of T-Phe-D-Leu-Phe-D-Leu-Phe-OH. The introduction of the C-terminal methyl ester (T-Phe-D-Leu-Phe-D-Leu-Phe-OMe) or amido group (X-Phe-D-Leu-Phe-D-Leu-Phe-NH2) appears detrimental for the affinity and formyl-peptide receptor antagonist properties of the Phe-D-Leu-Phe-D-Leu-Phe derivatives. The examined peptides inhibit superoxide anion production and lysozyme release more efficaciously than neutrophil chemotaxis.
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