A low molecular weight cationic peptide was isolated from Robinia pseudoacacia seed and tested in vitro against seven bacteria (Corynebacterium michiganense, Staphylococcus aureus, Bacillus subtilis, Erwinia carotovora subsp. carotovora, Pseudomonas syringae pv syringae, Xanthomonas campestris pv campestris, and Escherichia coli). The peptide inhibited the growth of the tested strains. The effective concentrations required for 50% inhibition of bacterial growth ranged between 20 and 120 mug ml(-1) protein. S. aureus was found to be the most sensitive strain, however, E. coli was not affected much when compared with others. Reduction of antibacterial activity of the peptide with CaCl2 addition into the growth medium was also observed. (C) 2004 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.