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Antibacterial activity of lactose-binding lectins from Bufo arenarum skin

A. Sánchez Riera, A. Daud, A. Gallo, S. Genta, M. Aybar, S. Sánchez

Departamento de Biología del Desarrollo, Instituto Superior de Investigaciones Biológicas (INSIBIO) y Universidad Nacional de Tucumán (UNT). Chacabuco 461, (4000) San Miguel de Tucumán, Tucumán, Argentina.
Address correspondence to: Dra. Alicia Sánchez Riera. Departamento de Biología del Desarrollo, INSIBIO (CONICETUNT). Chacabuco 461. (4000) San Miguel de Tucumán, Tucumán, ARGENTINA. Fax: (+54-381) 424 8025. E-mail:

BIOCELL 2003, 27(1), 37-46.


Amphibians respond to microbial infection through cellular and humoral defense mechanisms such as antimicrobial protein secretion. Most humoral defense proteins are synthetized in the skin. In this study we isolated two β-galactoside-binding lectins with molecular weights of 50 and 56 KDa from the skin of Bufo arenarum. These lectins have significant hemagglutination activity against trypsinized rabbit erythrocytes, which was inhibited by galactose-containing saccharides. They are water-soluble and independent of the presence of calcium. The antimicrobial analysis for each lectin was performed. At µmolar concentration lectins show strong bacteriostatic activity against Gram negative bacteria (Escherichia coli K12 4100 and wild strains of Escherichia coli and Proteus morganii) and Gram positive bacteria (Enterococcus faecalis). The antibacterial activity of these lectins may provide an effective defense against invading microbes in the amphibian Bufo arenarum.


Cite This Article

Sánchez, A. (2003). Antibacterial activity of lactose-binding lectins from Bufo arenarum skin. BIOCELL, 27(1), 37–46.


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