How Do Lipopeptides Work?

What Are Lipopeptides and How Do They Work?

Lipopeptides are molecules produced by microorganisms (soil bacteria and fungi) as part of their metabolism. Lipopeptides are used as antibiotics and antifungal and antitumor agents. They consist of a lipid connected to a peptide (short chains of amino acids linked by peptide bonds) and can self-assemble into different structures.

Lipopeptides exert their effect by binding and disrupting the cell membrane integrity of the target bacteria and initiating a series of events that eventually leads to cell death.

Lipopeptides are given as intravenous infusions and are not recommended for use in children aged below 12 months because of possible serious side effects.

How Are Lipopeptides Used?

Uses of Lipopeptides include:

  • Skin and soft tissue infections caused by gram-positive bacteria
  • Infections caused by multidrug-resistant bacteria (Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pyogenes, and Enterococcus faecalis)
  • Right-sided infective endocarditis (a bacterial infection of the heart lining, valve, or blood vessel)
  • Bacteremia (bacterial infection in bloodstream, fever, rapid heart rate, chills, confusion, and low blood pressure)
  • Cosmetics (skincare application as an antiwrinkle activity)
  • Antimicrobials (crop and dairy products preservation)

What Are Side Effects of Lipopeptides?

Common side effects include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Increased sweating
  • Pain/redness/swelling at the injection site

Other rare side effects include:

  • Musculoskeletal toxicity (muscle pain, unusual weakness)
  • Serum creatinine kinase elevation (change in the volume of urine, swelling on ankles)
  • Shortness of breath/chest pain
  • Mood changes
  • Diarrhea that does not stop
  • Abdominal pain/blood in stools
  • Oral thrush

The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible side effects, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. Check with your doctor or pharmacist to make sure these drugs do not cause any harm when you take them along with other medicines. Never stop taking your medication and never change your dose or frequency without consulting your doctor.

What Are Drug Names of Lipopeptides?

Drug names of lipopeptides include:

Medscape. Lipopeptides.

ScienceDirect. Lipopeptide Antibiotic.

NCBI. Mechanism of Action and Resistance to Daptomycin in Staphylococcus aureus and Enterococci.

The Royal Society of Chemistry. Lipopeptides: from self-assembly to bioactivity

NCBI. Cyclic lipodepsipeptides: a new class of antibacterial agents in the battle against resistant bacteria.

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