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Cationic α-helical antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) hold great promise for the treatment of multidrug-resistant (MDR) bacteria, which are unlikely to develop resistance to membrane lysis, the mechanism of action of such AMPs. However, linear AMPs are typically unstructured in solution, proteolytically labile and can non-specifically lyse mammalian cells. A new study now reports the design of more stable, membrane-selective AMPs termed stapled AMPs (StAMPs; α-helical AMPs stabilized using hydrocarbon linkers), which can kill antibiotic-resistant bacteria in mice.