Peptides mainly refer to molecules containing two to fifty amino acids linked by peptide bonds and molecularly poised between small molecules and proteins. The shortest peptides are dipeptides which consist of two amino acids joined by a single peptide bond. Long, continuous and unbranched peptide chains are called polypeptides. Peptides are mainly distinguished from proteins on molecule size but the boundaries between long peptides and smaller proteins are not absolute. Peptides possess a range of physiological and cellular functions mainly by binding to specific receptors and modulating the activity of protein. The versatility, specificity and their main role in any biological event such as growth and development, brain activity, immune defense, tumor lesions and anti-aging have raised great expectations for their pharmacological use.
Peptide drugs represent a unique class of pharmaceutical compounds used for prevention, therapy and diagnosis of diseases. Peptides provide an opportunity for therapeutic intervention as intrinsic signal molecules of many physiological and cellular functions. The intervention can closely mimic natural pathways because of the similarity of peptides to the natural pathway. Thus, peptide drugs, a huge family, are one of the promising directions of development and the most active and fastest-growing parts in the field of drug research and development.
Peptide drugs can be classified into peptide vaccines, anticancer peptides, antiviral peptides, antimicrobial peptides, peptidomimetics and some other small peptide drugs according to their functions. Compared with small molecular drugs, peptide drugs have many outstanding characteristics. Peptides are relatively easy to synthesize and modify because of their low molecular weight. The high specificity and biological activity of peptide drugs often leads to a decrease in toxicity. However, their half-life is generally short, thus easy to degrade rapidly in vivo.
With the development of peptide research, peptide drugs and drug candidates have a large growth over recent years. The main disease areas of peptide drugs are oncology, cardiovascular diseases, metabolic diseases and infectious diseases at present but there is significant opportunity to open up new disease areas. Moreover, the application of peptides in medical treatment and diagnosis and their combination with other therapies will increase with the expansion of the disease area.
Figure 1. A modular view of the peptide drug development cycle. (Lee, A. C. L., et al., 2019)
Creative Biolabs provides powerful risk-based preclinical data verification services for peptide drug research and development to deal with data reproducibility crisis which is a big obstacle for drug research and development and may lead to failure and high risk of investment. We have extensive experience in different kinds of peptide drugs and different disease areas with a focus on target validation, hit validation, lead validation, safety assessment and efficacy evaluation.
As a global contract research organization with professional scientific team, advanced equipment and up-to-date technology, Creative Biolabs convinces our clients that they will receive fully compliant and trustworthy results at promised time. Also we offer our clients with project feasibility assessment through a comprehensive assessment of you drug candidates to help reduce investment risk.
Our services will be of great benefit to you if you are about to start or you are developing peptide drug research and development projects. Please feel free to contact us and we are always there for you.
Lee, A. C. L., et al., 2019. A Comprehensive Review on Current Advances in Peptide Drug Development and Design. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 20(10): 2383.