Most Antimicrobial Peptides (AMPs) are small peptides with 10–40 residues. They are part of the immune system in virtually all multicellular organisms as a defense strategy. They are promising drug candidates for the control or treatment of several diseases or to be used in combination with conventional therapy. There are several AMPs effective against cancer cells and diseases caused by bacteria, fungi and parasites. However, none AMP is currently commercialized due to a number of reasons such as high production costs as compared to conventional antibiotics. The new generation of AMPs, mainly antimicrobial peptidomimetics, has several drug candidates currently in Phase I and II clinical trials. Understanding the AMPs' fully mechanism of action is crucial to develop AMPs into useful antimicrobial agents highlighting their strengths: broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity, low probability to generate resistance, and potential for topical and injected applications.
Keywords: Amphipathicity, Anticancer, Antimicrobial peptides, Antiparasitic, Antiviral, Cathelicidin, Cationicity, Conventional antibiotics, Databases, Defensins, Dissemination, Drug development, Immune system, Interaction, Microorganisms, Multiresistance, Peptidomimetics, Permeabilization, Pharmaceutical companies, Therapy.