Evidence from previous works disclosed the antimicrobial, antiviral, anti-tumour and/or immunomodulatory activity exerted, through different mechanisms of action, by peptides expressed in the complementarity-determining regions or even in the constant region of antibodies, independently from their specificity and isotype. Presently, we report the selection, from available databases, of peptide sequences encoded by immunoglobulin genes for the evaluation of their potential biological activities. Synthetic peptides representing the translated products of J lambda and J heavy genes proved to act in vitro against pathogenic fungi, entering yeast cells and causing their death, and exerted a therapeutic effect in a Galleria mellonella model of infection by Candida albicans. No haemolytic, cytotoxic and genotoxic effects were observed on mammalian cells. These findings raise the hypothesis that antibodies could be the evolutionary result of the adaptive combination of gene products ancestrally devoted to innate antimicrobial immunity.
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