Antibacterial free fatty acids and monoglycerides: biological activities, experimental testing, and therapeutic applications
Yoon, Bo Kyeong
Jackman, Joshua A.
Valle-González, Elba R.
Date of Issue2018
School of Materials Science and Engineering
Centre for Biomimetic Sensor Science
Antimicrobial lipids such as fatty acids and monoglycerides are promising antibacterial agents that destabilize bacterial cell membranes, causing a wide range of direct and indirect inhibitory effects. The goal of this review is to introduce the latest experimental approaches for characterizing how antimicrobial lipids destabilize phospholipid membranes within the broader scope of introducing current knowledge about the biological activities of antimicrobial lipids, testing strategies, and applications for treating bacterial infections. To this end, a general background on antimicrobial lipids, including structural classification, is provided along with a detailed description of their targeting spectrum and currently understood antibacterial mechanisms. Building on this knowledge, different experimental approaches to characterize antimicrobial lipids are presented, including cell-based biological and model membrane-based biophysical measurement techniques. Particular emphasis is placed on drawing out how biological and biophysical approaches complement one another and can yield mechanistic insights into how the physicochemical properties of antimicrobial lipids influence molecular self-assembly and concentration-dependent interactions with model phospholipid and bacterial cell membranes. Examples of possible therapeutic applications are briefly introduced to highlight the potential significance of antimicrobial lipids for human health and medicine, and to motivate the importance of employing orthogonal measurement strategies to characterize the activity profile of antimicrobial lipids.
International Journal of Molecular Sciences
© 2018 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).