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Peptide Based Therapy for Neurological Disorders

Peptides are small molecules composed of amino acids linked together by peptide bonds. The targeted action of these peptides along with their magnificent ability to reach locations in the body that are complicated to access, is being considered of tremendous potential in disease modifying therapies. Synthetic as well as natural peptides like Carnosine are currently under research for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders (NDDs). Peptide based vaccines are currently under immense research for diseases like dementia. Toxicity of peptide-based drugs towards eukaryotic cells due to their increased haemolytic activity is of major concern and this is being tackled by introducing modifications into the peptide structure. Some crucial peptide inhibitors currently in use for neurodegenerative disorders include Aβ (16-20) KLVFF for Alzheimer’s disease, NAPVSIPQ (NAP) for Parkinson’s disease, towards eukaryotic cells Vasoactive Intestinal Peptides (VIP) for Huntington’s disease, Polyglutamine Binding Peptide-1(QBP1) for Dentatorubral- pallidoluysian atrophy (DRPLA). Certain peptides are involved in inhibition of mitochondrial permeability transition (MPT) that plays a prominent part in the materialization of neurodegenerative diseases, one such example of peptides being Ba-V which is obtained from Bothrops atrox snake venom. New therapeutic peptides are being identified using bioinformatics tools like high throughput screening (HTS). These tools are being used to explore the selectivity, stability, extent of immune response and toxic side effects of peptides. Apart from neurodegenerative diseases, the potential of bioactive peptides is also being tested against cancer, diabetes and microbes. This review focuses on the recent advances in peptide therapeutics and novel peptides discovered for the treatment of NDs.

Journal Title: Current Protein & Peptide Science

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