Investigation of the Antimicrobial Activity of Soy Peptides


Antimicrobial resistance is a great concern in the medical community, as well as food industry. Soy peptides were tested against bacterial biofilms for their antimicrobial activity. A high throughput drug screening assay was developed using microfluidic technology, RAMAN spectroscopy, and optical microscopy for rapid screening of antimicrobials and rapid identification of pathogens.


Synthesized PGTAVFK and IKAFKEATKVDKVVVLWTA soy peptides were tested against Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Listeria monocytogenes using a microdilution assay. Microfluidic technology in combination with Surface Enhanced RAMAN Spectroscopy (SERS) and optical microscopy was used for rapid screening of soy peptides, pathogen identification, and to visualize the impact of selected peptides.


The PGTAVFK peptide did not significantly affect P. aeruginosa, although it had an inhibitory effect on L. monocytogenes above a concentration of 625 µM. IKAFKEATKVDKVVVLWTA was effective against both P. aeruginosa and L. monocytogenes above a concentration of 37.2 µM. High throughput drug screening assays were able to reduce the screening and bacterial detection time to 4 h. SERS spectra was used to distinguish the two bacterial species.


PGTAVFK and IKAFKEATKVDKVVVLWTA soy peptides showed antimicrobial activity against P. aeruginosa and L. monocytogenes. Development of high throughput assays could streamline the drug screening and bacterial detection process.

General significance

The results of this study show that the antimicrobial properties, biocompatibility, and biodegradability of soy peptides could possibly make them an alternative to the ineffective antimicrobials and antibiotics currently used in the food and medical fields. High throughput drug screening assays could help hasten pre-clinical trials in the medical field.

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