Defensins in innate antiviral immunity

  title={Defensins in innate antiviral immunity},
  author={Mary E. Klotman and Theresa L. Chang},
  journal={Nature Reviews Immunology},
Defensins are small antimicrobial peptides that are produced by leukocytes and epithelial cells, and that have an important role in innate immunity. Recent advances in understanding the mechanisms of the antiviral action(s) of defensins indicate that they have a dual role in antiviral defence, acting directly on the virion and on the host cell. This Review focuses on the antiviral activities and mechanisms of action of mammalian defensins, and on the clinical relevance of these activities… 
Defensins in innate immunity
Growing evidence suggests that theta-defensins offer the best opportunity for therapeutic development as a novel class of broadly active anti-infective and anti-inflammatory agents.
Antiviral Mechanisms of Human Defensins
The roles of antimicrobial peptides in innate host defense.
These peptides represent not only an important component of innate host defense against microbial colonization and a link between innate and adaptive immunity, but also form a foundation for the development of new therapeutic agents.
Function of Antimicrobial Peptides in Lung Innate Immunity
The innate immune system of the lung is a complex network of different cellular and noncellular components protecting the lung from inhaled pathogens that include modulation of the innate and adaptive immune response to infection as well as lung repair after injury.
Defensins: A Double-Edged Sword in Host Immunity
It is posited that given an enabling environment defensins, widely heralded as the “Swiss army knife,” can function as a “double−edged sword” in host immunity.
Towards the Application of Human Defensins as Antivirals
It is suggested that basic research be conducted on human defensins that focuses on RNA viruses, such as human immunodeficiency virus, influenza A virus, respiratory syncytial virus, and dengue virus, which have posed huge challenges for vaccine development for different reasons.


Defensins: antimicrobial peptides of innate immunity
  • T. Ganz
  • Biology
    Nature Reviews Immunology
  • 2003
This review, inspired by a spate of recent studies ofdefensins in human diseases and animal models, focuses on the biological function of defensins.
Defensins: natural anti-HIV peptides.
Study of the complex function of defensins in innate immunity against HIV has implications for the further understanding of disease progression and for the development of novel approaches to prevention and therapy.
Mammalian defensins in the antimicrobial immune response
This review focuses on the biological functions of three structural subgroups of mammalian defensins and the evidence for their involvement as effectors of antimicrobial innate immunity.
Primate defensins
  • R. Lehrer
  • Biology
    Nature Reviews Microbiology
  • 2004
Subfamilies of defensins in primates, which are expressed only in Old World monkeys, lesser apes and orangutans, are lectins with broad-spectrum antiviral efficacy, are described.
Multiple roles of antimicrobial defensins, cathelicidins, and eosinophil-derived neurotoxin in host defense.
It appears that mammalian antimicrobial proteins contribute to both innate and adaptive antimicrobial immunity, as several defensins have considerable immunoenhancing activity.
Defensins – innate immunity at the epithelial frontier
The identification of α-defensins and their murine counterparts, cryptdins, in the small intestine prompted intensive research into epithelial antimicrobial defence, and eight different peptides with varying antimicrobial properties have been identified.
Human β-Defensins Suppress Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection: Potential Role in Mucosal Protection
The data suggest that, besides a direct inactivation of HIV virions, hBD2 inhibits HIV replication in the intracellular environment, and it is speculated that β-defensins mediate a novel antiretroviral mechanism that contributes to prevention of oral HIV transmission in the oral cavity.
Dual role of a-defensin-1 in antiHIV-1 innate immunity
Studying the complex function of alpha-defensin-1 in innate immunity against HIV has implications for prevention as well as therapeutics, and it is demonstrated that at least 1 of the cellular effects associated with HIV inhibition is interference with PKC signaling in primary CD4+ T cells.
Epithelial cell-derived antibacterial peptides human beta-defensins and cathelicidin: multifunctional activities on mast cells.
In addition to their bactericidal activities, epithelial cell-derived antibacterial peptides may modulate the inflammatory responses by recruiting mast cells to inflammation foci and inducing the degranulation as well as prostaglandin production from this cell population.