Plantaricin A (PlnA) is a peptide with antimicrobial and pheromone activities. PlnA was synthesized chemically and used as a pure peptide or synthesized biologically using Lactobacillus plantarum DC400 co-cultured with Lactobacillus sanfranciscensis DPPMA174. Cell-free supernatant (CFS) was used as a crude PlnA preparation. As estimated using the 3-(4,5-dimethyl-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide and the 2',7'-dichlorofluorescein diacetate assays, both PlnA preparations increased the antioxidant defenses of human NCTC 2544 keratinocytes. PlnA (10 μg/ml) had a higher activity than hyaluronic acid or 125 μg/ml α-tocopherol. Effects on the transcriptional regulation of filaggrin (FLG), involucrin (IVL), hyaluronan synthase (HAS2), human β-defensin-2 (HBD-2) and tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α) genes were assayed. Compared with the control, expression of the FLG gene in NCTC 2544 cells increased in cells treated with hyaluronic acid, 1 or 10 μg/ml PlnA. Compared with the control, the level of IVL gene expression increased in NCTC 2544 cells treated with 10 μg/ml PlnA. No significant difference was found between the level of the HAS2 gene expressed by control cells and cells treated with PlnA. Compared with chemically synthesized PlnA, the up-regulation of the HBD-2 gene by CFS was higher. Compared with the control, expression of TNF-α decreased in NCTC 2544 cells after treatment with 1 or 10 μg/ml of chemically synthesized PlnA. In contrast, the level of TNF-α was highest in the presence of 10 μg/ml CFS-PlnA. These findings suggest that the PlnA was positively sensed by human keratinocytes, promoting antioxidant defenses, barrier functions and antimicrobial activity of the skin.
© 2012 John Wiley & Sons A/S.