Peptaibols are peculiar peptides produced by fungi associated to plants. They are composed by 4 to 20 amminoacidic residues and exhibit antibiotic and antifungal properties. Due to their amphypatic nature, they can form ion channels in biological membranes. By making use of experimental models of biological membranes (biomimetic membranes) currently employed in the Laboratory of Bioelectrochemistry, and models of plant membranes (corn seed root), that are used in the International Laboratory of Plant Neurobiology (LINV), we characterized synthetic peptides such as Trichogin GAIV and its shorter homologues (4 and 8 residues). We studied these peptaibols in a dioleoylphosphatidylcholine monolayer supported by Hg using different electrochemical techniques (AC,VC,EIS). The experimental technique employed in the LINV (Clark microelectrode coupled to MIFE system) allows to measure oxygen flux in the solution contacting plant cell membranes, after treatment with different peptide concentrations. Preliminary results might indicate that short peptides can influence the whole metabolism of the plant and can therefore be used as “elicitors” in order to induce an acquired systemic resistance.
Can peptaibols be used as elicitors? / A.Sacconi; M.R. Moncelli; S.Mancuso; C.Pandolfi; C.Toniolo. - In: EUROPEAN BIOPHYSICS JOURNAL. - ISSN 0175-7571. - STAMPA. - 38:(2009), pp. S135-S135. (Intervento presentato al convegno 7th European Biophysics Congress (EBSA) tenutosi a Genova, Italy. nel July 11-15 2009).