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Immunostimulating Effect of the Synthetic Peptide Octarphin Corresponding to β-Endorphin Fragment 12-19

Yu. A. Kovalitskaya1, Yu. N. Nekrasova1, V. B. Sadovnikov1, Yu. A. Zolotarev2, and E. V. Navolotskaya1*

1Branch of Shemyakin and Ovchinnikov Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry, Russian Academy of Sciences, pr. Nauki 6, 142292 Pushchino, Moscow Region, Russia; fax: (4967) 33-05-27; E-mail: navolotskaya@fibkh.serpukhov.su

2Institute of Molecular Genetics, Russian Academy of Sciences, pl. Kurchatova 2, 123182 Moscow, Russia; fax: (495) 196-0221; E-mail: zolya@img.ras.ru

* To whom correspondence should be addressed.

Received November 24, 2010
We have synthesized the peptide TPLVTLFK corresponding to β-endorphin fragment 12-19 (dubbed octarphin) and its analogs (LPLVTLFK, TLLVTLFK, TPLVLLFK, TPLVTLLK, TPLVTLFL). The octarphin peptide was labeled with tritium (specific activity 28 Ci/mol), and its binding to murine peritoneal macrophages was studied. [3H]Octarphin was found to bind to macrophages with high affinity (Kd = 2.3 ± 0.2 nM) and specificity. The specific binding of [3H]octarphin was inhibited by unlabeled b-endorphin and the selective agonist of nonopioid b-endorphin receptor synthetic peptide immunorphin (SLTCLVKGFY) (Ki = 2.7 ± 0.2 and 2.4 ± 0.2 nM, respectively) and was not inhibited by unlabeled naloxone, a-endorphin, γ-endorphin, or [Met5]enkephalin (Ki > 10 mM). Inhibitory activity of unlabeled octarphin analogs was more than 100 times lower than that of unlabeled octarphin. Octarphin was shown to stimulate activity of murine immunocompetent cells in vitro and in vivo: at concentration of 1-10 nM it enhanced the adhesion and spreading of peritoneal macrophages as well as their ability to digest bacteria of Salmonella typhimurium virulent strain 415 in vitro; the peptide administered intraperitoneally at a dose of 20 µg/animal on day 7, 3, and 1 prior to isolation of cells increased activity of peritoneal macrophages as well as spleen T- and B-lymphocytes.
KEY WORDS: β-endorphin, naloxone, peptides, receptors, immune system

DOI: 10.1134/S0006297911050105