Lipopeptides: from self-assembly to bioactivity
This Feature Article discusses several classes of lipopeptide with important biomedical applications as antimicrobial and antifungal agents, in immune therapies and in personal care applications among others. Two main classes of lipopeptide are considered: (i) bacterially-expressed lipopeptides with a cyclic peptide headgroup and (ii) linear lipopeptides (with one or more lipid chains) based on bio-derived and bio-inspired amino acid sequences with current clinical applications. The applications are briefly summarized, and the biophysical characterization of the molecules is reviewed, with a particular focus on self-assembly. For several of these types of biomolecule, the formation of micelles above a critical micelle concentration has been observed while others form bilayer structures, depending on conditions of pH and temperature. As yet, there are few studies on the possible relationship between self-assembly into structures such as micelles and bioactivity of this class of molecule although this is likely to attract further attention.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Celebrating the 2016 RSC Prize and Award Winners