Saturday, May 23, 2015

In depth analysis of tear peptidomics

Human tears are surprisingly complicated. They are full of lysozyme to break down proteins and pathogens but they have been shown to have other anti-microbial activities. To figure out where these are coming from Mikel Azkargorta et. al., performed an in-depth peptidomics analysis of some human tears.  Their analysis looks something like this:

Turns out 2 of the things they found look like (in modeling experiments) antimicrobial compounds we didn't know about before!


  1. Thanks a lot Ben for your post.

    We found over 200 naturally occurring peptides in basal tear coming from 25 proteins. After the in-silico interrogation for antimicrobial activity, we chose two peptides corresponding to high antimicrobial value. We newly synthesized them and after in-vitro analysis performed against common ocular pathogens, we found that indeed they are antimicrobial! So as you say, there are some over magic bullets but lysozyme and other protecting proteins in our tears; peptides protecting us from the nasty pathogens that eventually may come to our eyes.

    Felix Elortza

    1. Felix,
      Thanks so much for the additional information!!! This is super cool work you are doing. We need some new antibiotics, so get cranking :)