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Sample records for acutus snake venom

  1. Antibodies against Venom of the Snake Deinagkistrodon acutus

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Yu-Ching; Liang, Meng-Huei; Leu, Sy-Jye; Lin, Liang-Tzung; Chiang, Jen-Ron

    2015-01-01

    Snake venom protein from Deinagkistrodon acutus (DA protein), one of the major venomous species in Taiwan, causes hemorrhagic symptoms that can lead to death. Although horse-derived antivenin is a major treatment, relatively strong and detrimental side effects are seen occasionally. In our study, yolk immunoglobulin (IgY) was purified from eggs, and DA protein was recognized using Western blotting and an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), similar to therapeutic horse antivenin. The ELISA also indicated that specific IgY antibodies were elicited after the fifth booster, plateaued, and lasted for at least 3 months. To generate monoclonal single-chain variable fragment (scFv) antibodies, we used phage display technology to construct two libraries with short or long linkers, containing 6.24 × 108 and 5.28 × 108 transformants, respectively. After four rounds of biopanning, the eluted phage titer increased, and the phage-based ELISA indicated that the specific clones were enriched. Nucleotide sequences of 30 individual clones expressing scFv were analyzed and classified into four groups that all specifically recognized the DA venom protein. Furthermore, based on mass spectrometry, the scFv-bound protein was deduced to be snake venom metalloproteinase proteins. Most importantly, both IgY and mixed scFv inhibited the lethal effect in mice injected with the minimum lethal dosage of the DA protein. We suggest that together, these antibodies could be applied to the development of diagnostic agents or treatments for snakebite envenomation in the future. PMID:26475102

  2. Biochemical properties and comparative pharmacology of a coagulant from Deinagkistrodon acutus snake venom.

    PubMed

    Tang, Song-Shan; Wang, Xiao-Hua; Zhang, Juan-Hui; Tang, Bo-Shan; Qian, Li; Li, Pei-Ying; Luo, Lie-Wei

    2013-04-11

    A number of snake venom thrombin-like enzymes (TLEs) have already been characterized. Some TLEs play significant roles in vessel injury hemostasis. A novel TLE (Agacutase) was purified from Deinagkistrodon acutus snake venom by the means of Sephadex G-75, DEAE-Sepharose FF, and Sephadex G-25 column chromatography. Structural analysis indicated that Agacutase is a single-chain glycoprotein with a molecular mass of 31,084 Da, isoelectric point of 4.38, optimal activity at 37 °C and pH 6.6, sugar content of 7.6%. Its N-terminal 44 amino acid sequence was determined to be VIGGNECDTNEHRFLAAFFTSRPWIFQCAGTLIHEEWVLAAAHC, showing maximum identity of 80% with that of Dav-X protease. The Agacutase-induced clotting activity was not influenced by heparin, hirudin, or Dextran 40, but activated by Ca(2+) and inhibited by PMSF or lactose, which suggests that Agacutase is a serine protease and the coagulation activity is independent of Thrombin. Agacutase with arginine esterase activity specifically cleaves the α-chain of fibrinogen. Agacutase iv (0.03-0.12 U/kg) shortened 16-68% of the rabbit blood clotting time. No significant influence was indicated on platelet, Factor II and XIII, or fibrinolytic system. It converts fibrinogen into the soluble fibrin that accelerates hemostasis at wound. Pharmacological comparison showed the hemostatic effect of Agacutase lasted 24h while Reptilase did 8h. Its maximum tolerated, abnormal toxicity, allergic, and hemorrhagin doses were 80 U/kg, 1 U, 2 U, and 50 U, respectively, whereas those of Reptilase or Agacutin were 35 U/kg, 0.25 U, 0.25 U, and 0.2 U, respectively. The results indicated that Agacutase may be a predominant coagulant. PMID:23429184

  3. Antiplatelet Aggregation and Antithrombosis Efficiency of Peptides in the Snake Venom of Deinagkistrodon acutus: Isolation, Identification, and Evaluation

    PubMed Central

    Ding, Bin; Xu, Zhenghong; Qian, Chaodong; Jiang, Fusheng; Ding, Xinghong; Ruan, Yeping; Ding, Zhishan; Fan, Yongsheng

    2015-01-01

    Two peptides of Pt-A (Glu-Asn-Trp 429 Da) and Pt-B (Glu-Gln-Trp 443 Da) were isolated from venom liquor of Deinagkistrodon acutus. Their antiplatelet aggregation effects were evaluated with platelet-rich human plasma in vitro; the respective IC50 of Pt-A and Pt-B was 66 μM and 203 μM. Both peptides exhibited protection effects on ADP-induced paralysis in mice. After ADP administration, the paralysis time of different concentration of Pt-A and Pt-B lasted as the following: 80 mg/kg Pt-B (152.8 ± 57.8 s) < 40 mg/kg Pt-A (163.5 ± 59.8 s) < 20 mg/kg Pt-A (253.5 ± 74.5 s) < 4 mg/kg clopidogrel (a positive control, 254.5 ± 41.97 s) < 40 mg/kg Pt-B (400.8 ± 35.9 s) < 10 mg/kg Pt-A (422.8 ± 55.4 s), all of which were statistically shorter than the saline treatment (666 ± 28 s). Pulmonary tissue biopsy confirmed that Pt-A and Pt-B prevented the formation of thrombi in the lung. Unlike ADP injection alone, which caused significant reduction of peripheral platelet count, Pt-A treatment prevented the drop of peripheral platelet counts; interestingly, Pt-B could not, even though the same amount of Pt-B also showed protection effects on ADP-induced paralysis and thrombosis. More importantly, intravenous injection of Pt-A and Pt-B did not significantly increase the hemorrhage risks as clopidogrel. PMID:26483843

  4. [Neurotoxins from snake venom].

    PubMed

    Larréché, S; Mion, G; Clapson, P; Debien, B; Wybrecht, D; Goyffon, M

    2008-04-01

    Many snakes are able to quickly immobilize prey, thanks to their venom neurotoxins. Most of these snakes belong to families Elapidae or Hydrophidae but neurotoxins were also isolated from families Viperidae and Colubridae. Ophidian neurotoxins can be classified into several categories: neurotoxins which inhibit synaptic transmission (postsynaptic and presynaptic neurotoxins) and neurotoxins which facilitate it excessively (dendrotoxin and fasciculin). Their toxicity is dose-dependent, and venom effects are extremely fast. The clinical feature is a potentially fatal neurological syndrome, the so called cobraic syndrome. Because death by respiratory arrest may occur quickly with cobraic syndrome, immunotherapy is a true emergency, because toxins irreversible fixing makes immunotherapy effect uncertain after a few hours passed.

  5. Immunoreactivity between venoms and commercial antiserums in four Chinese snakes and venom identification by species-specific antibody.

    PubMed

    Gao, Jian-Fang; Wang, Jin; Qu, Yan-Fu; Ma, Xiao-Mei; Ji, Xiang

    2013-01-31

    We studied the immunoreactivity between venoms and commercial antiserums in four Chinese venomous snakes, Bungarus multicinctus, Naja atra, Deinagkistrodon acutus and Gloydius brevicaudus. Venoms from the four snakes shared common antigenic components, and most venom components expressed antigenicity in the immunological reaction between venoms and antiserums. Antiserums cross-reacted with heterologous venoms. Homologous venom and antiserum expressed the highest reaction activity in all cross-reactions. Species-specific antibodies (SSAbs) were obtained from four antiserums by immunoaffinity chromatography: the whole antiserum against each species was gradually passed through a medium system coated with heterologous venoms, and the cross-reacting components in antiserum were immunoabsorbed by the common antigens in heterologous venoms; the unbound components (i.e., SSAbs) were collected, and passed through Hitrap G protein column and concentrated. The SSAbs were found to have high specificity by western blot and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). A 6-well ELISA strip coated with SSAbs was used to assign a venom sample and blood and urine samples from the envenomed rats to a given snake species. Our detections could differentiate positive and negative samples, and identify venoms of a snake species in about 35 min. The ELISA strips developed in this study are clinically useful in rapid and reliable identification of venoms from the above four snake species.

  6. Diagnostic uses of snake venom.

    PubMed

    Marsh, N A

    2001-01-01

    Snake venom toxins are invaluable for the assay of coagulation factors and for the study of haemostasis generally. Thrombin-like enzymes (SVTLE) are used for fibrinogen and fibrinogen breakdown product assays as well as detecting dysfibrinogenaemias. Since SVTLE are not inhibited by heparin, they can be used for assaying antithrombin III in samples containing heparin. Snake venom prothrombin activators are utilised in prothrombin assays, whilst Russell's viper venom (RVV) can be used to assay clotting factors V, VII, X and lupus anticoagulants (LA). Activators from the taipan, Australian brown snake and saw-scaled viper have also been used to assay LA. Protein C (PC) and activated PC (APC) resistance can be measured by means of RVV, Protac (from Southern copperhead snake venom) and STA-Staclot (from Crotalus viridis helleri) whilst von Willebrand factor can be studied with Botrocetin (Bothrops jararaca). Finally, snake venom C-type lectins and metalloproteinase disintegrins are being used to study platelet glycoprotein receptors and show great potential for use in the routine coagulation laboratory. PMID:11910187

  7. Species identification from dried snake venom.

    PubMed

    Singh, Chandra S; Gaur, Ajay; Sreenivas, Ara; Singh, Lalji

    2012-05-01

    Illegal trade in snake parts has increased enormously. In spite of strict protection under wildlife act, a large number of snakes are being killed ruthlessly in India for venom and skin. Here, an interesting case involving confiscation of crystallized dried snake venom and subsequent DNA-based species identification is reported. The analysis using the universal primers for cytochrome b region of the mitochondrial DNA revealed that the venom was extracted from an Indian cobra (Naja naja). On the basis of this report, the forwarding authority booked a case in the court of law against the accused for illegal hunting of an endangered venomous snake and smuggling of snake venom. This approach thus has immense potential for rapid identification of snake species facing endangerment because of illegal trade. This is also the first report of DNA isolation from dried snake venom for species identification. PMID:22268640

  8. [Bites of venomous snakes in Switzerland].

    PubMed

    Plate, Andreas; Kupferschmidt, Hugo; Schneemann, Markus

    2016-06-01

    Although snake bites are rare in Europe, there are a constant number of snake bites in Switzerland. There are two domestic venomous snakes in Switzerland: the aspic viper (Vipera aspis) and the common European adder (Vipera berus). Bites from venomous snakes are caused either by one of the two domestic venomous snakes or by an exotic venomous snake kept in a terrarium. Snake- bites can cause both a local and/or a systemic envenoming. Potentially fatal systemic complications are related to disturbances of the hemostatic- and cardiovascular system as well as the central or peripheral nervous system. Beside a symptomatic therapy the administration of antivenom is the only causal therapy to neutralize the venomous toxins.

  9. [Bites of venomous snakes in Switzerland].

    PubMed

    Plate, Andreas; Kupferschmidt, Hugo; Schneemann, Markus

    2016-06-01

    Although snake bites are rare in Europe, there are a constant number of snake bites in Switzerland. There are two domestic venomous snakes in Switzerland: the aspic viper (Vipera aspis) and the common European adder (Vipera berus). Bites from venomous snakes are caused either by one of the two domestic venomous snakes or by an exotic venomous snake kept in a terrarium. Snake- bites can cause both a local and/or a systemic envenoming. Potentially fatal systemic complications are related to disturbances of the hemostatic- and cardiovascular system as well as the central or peripheral nervous system. Beside a symptomatic therapy the administration of antivenom is the only causal therapy to neutralize the venomous toxins. PMID:27269771

  10. Snake venom antibodies in Ecuadorian Indians.

    PubMed

    Theakston, R D; Reid, H A; Larrick, J W; Kaplan, J; Yost, J A

    1981-10-01

    Serum samples from 223 Waorani Indians, a tribe in eastern Ecuador, were investigated by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay for antibodies to snake venom. Seventy-eight per cent were positive, confirming the highest incidence and mortality from snake bite poisoning yet recorded in the world. Most samples were positive for more than one venom antibody. Antibodies were found to venoms of Bothrops viper in 60% of positive cases, of Micrurus coral snake in 21%, and of the bushmaster, Lachesis muta, in 18%. Further studies are needed to determine whether high venom-antibody levels afford protection against further snake envenoming. PMID:7299877

  11. Recombinant snake venom prothrombin activators.

    PubMed

    Lövgren, Ann

    2013-01-01

    Three prothrombin activators; ecarin, which was originally isolated from the venom of the saw-scaled viper Echis carinatus, trocarin from the rough-scaled snake Tropidechis carinatus, and oscutarin from the Taipan snake Oxyuranus scutellatus, were expressed in mammalian cells with the purpose to obtain recombinant prothrombin activators that could be used to convert prothrombin to thrombin. We have previously reported that recombinant ecarin can efficiently generate thrombin without the need for additional cofactors, but does not discriminate non-carboxylated prothrombin from biologically active γ-carboxylated prothrombin. Here we report that recombinant trocarin and oscutarin could not efficiently generate thrombin without additional protein co-factors. We confirm that both trocarin and oscutarin are similar to human coagulation Factor X (FX), explaining the need for additional cofactors. Sequencing of a genomic fragment containing 7 out of the 8 exons coding for oscutarin further confirmed the similarity to human FX. PMID:23111318

  12. Rosmarinic acid in Argusia argentea inhibits snake venom-induced hemorrhage.

    PubMed

    Aung, Hnin Thanda; Nikai, Toshiaki; Niwa, Masatake; Takaya, Yoshiaki

    2010-10-01

    A methanolic extract of Argusia (or Messerschmidia or Tournefortia) argentea (Boraginaceae) significantly inhibited hemorrhage induced by crude venom of Trimeresurus flavoviridis. The extract was then separated according to antivenom activity by using silica gel column chromatography and HPLC equipped with an octadecylsilanized silica gel (ODS) column to afford rosmarinic acid (RA) (1) as an active principle. RA (1) significantly inhibited the hemorrhagic effect of crude venoms of T. flavoviridis, Crotalus atrox, Gloydius blomhoffii, Bitis arietans as well as snake venom metalloproteinases, HT-b (C. atrox), bilitoxin 2 (Agkistrodon bilineatus), HF (B. arietans), and Ac1-proteinase (Deinagkistrodon acutus). This is the first report of the antihemorrhage activity of RA (1), and RA (1) greatly contributes to the antihemorrhagic efficiency of A. argentea against crude snake venoms and hemorrhagic toxins.

  13. [The threat of snake and scorpion venoms].

    PubMed

    Płusa, Tadeusz; Smędzik, Katarzyna

    2015-09-01

    Venoms of snakes and scorpions pose a significant threat to the health and life of humans. The speed and range of their actions causes damage of the organ responsible for the maintenance of vital signs. Venomous snake venoms cause blood clotting disorders, tissue necrosis and hemolysis, and the release of a number of proinflammatory cytokines and impair antibody synthesis. Availability of antitoxins is limited and in the most cases supportive treatment is recommended. In turn, the venom of scorpions beside intestinal symptoms cause significant impairment of neuromuscular conduction, causing severe respiratory disorders. Action venom poses a particular threat to sensitive patients. The degree of threat to life caused by the venom of snakes and scorpions authorizes the treatment of these substances as a potential biological weapon. PMID:26449581

  14. Most lay people can correctly identify indigenous venomous snakes.

    PubMed

    Corbett, Stephen W; Anderson, Brian; Nelson, Brett; Bush, Sean; Hayes, William K; Cardwell, Mike D

    2005-10-01

    We attempted to determine how accurately members of the public can identify venomous snakes. Six different snakes indigenous to southern California were displayed in cages for 265 people to view at a street fair. These included 4 nonvenomous snakes and 2 venomous snakes. People were asked whether the snake was venomous and the name of the snake, if they knew it. Overall, people recognized whether a snake was venomous or nonvenomous 81% of the time. They were most accurate at identifying rattlesnakes as being venomous (95%) but incorrectly identified nonvenomous snakes as being venomous 25% of the time. Men were more accurate than women, and adults were more accurate than children. Subjects were less well able to identify the exact species of snakes. The results suggest that there may be no need to capture, kill, or bring a snake to the hospital for identification, at least in this geographic area.

  15. Hydrolysis of DNA by 17 snake venoms.

    PubMed

    de Roodt, Adolfo Rafael; Litwin, Silvana; Angel, Sergio O

    2003-08-01

    DNA hydrolysis caused by venoms of 17 species of snakes was studied by different methodologies. Endonucleolytic activity was tested by incubation of the venoms with the plasmid pBluescript and subsequent visualization of the electrophoretic patterns in 1% agarose gels stained with ethidium bromide. DNA was sequentially degraded, from supercoiled to opened circle, to linear form, in a concentration dependent manner. The highest hydrolytic activity was observed in Bothrops (B.) neuwiedii and Naja (N.) siamensis venoms. Exonucleolytic activity was analyzed on pBluescript digested with SmaI or EcoRI. All venoms caused complete hydrolysis after 2 h of incubation. SDS-PAGE analysis in gels containing calf thymus DNA showed that the hydrolytic bands were located at approximately 30 kDa. DNA degradation was studied by radial hydrolysis in 1% agarose gels containing calf thymus DNA plus ethidium bromide and visualized by UV light. Venom of B. neuwiedii showed the highest activity whereas those of B. ammodytoides and Ovophis okinavensis (P<0.05) showed the lowest activity. Antibodies against venom of B. neuwiedii or N. siamensis neutralized the DNAse activity of both venoms. In conclusion, venom from different snakes showed endo- and exonucleolytic activity on DNA. The inhibition of DNA hydrolysis by EDTA and heterologous antibodies suggests similarities in the structure of the venom components involved.

  16. Snake oil and venoms for medical research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolpert, H. D.

    2011-04-01

    Some think that using derivatives of snake venom for medical purposes is the modern version of snake oil but they are seriously misjudging the research potentials of some of these toxins in medicines of the 2000's. Medical trials, using some of the compounds has proven their usefulness. Several venoms have shown the possibilities that could lead to anticoagulants, helpful in heart disease. The blood clotting protein from the taipan snake has been shown to rapidly stop excessive bleeding. The venom from the copperhead may hold an answer to breast cancer. The Malaysian pit viper shows promise in breaking blood clots. Cobra venom may hold keys to finding cures for Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's. Rattlesnake proteins from certain species have produced blood pressure medicines. Besides snake venoms, venom from the South American dart frog, mollusks (i.e. Cone Shell Snail), lizards (i.e. Gila Monster & Komodo Dragon), some species of spiders and tarantulas, Cephalopods, mammals (i.e. Platypus & Shrews), fish (i.e. sting rays, stone fish, puffer fish, blue bottle fish & box jelly fish), intertidal marine animals (echinoderms)(i.e. Crown of Thorn Star Fish & Flower Urchin) and the Honeybee are being investigated for potential medical benefits.

  17. Snake venoms in science and clinical medicine. 2. Applied immunology in snake venom research.

    PubMed

    Theakston, R D

    1989-01-01

    Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) is a very important tool for studying both the epidemiology and clinical effects of snake bite in man. For epidemiology ELISA depends on the development and persistence of specific humoral venom antibody in previous snake bite victims. In the Nigerian savanna 63% of previous bite victims possessed specific venom antibodies against Echis carinatus venom; in Ecuador, where there is a 5% annual mortality due to snake bite in a population of Waorani Indians, venom antibodies against a wide range of different venoms were identified in previous bite victims using ELISA. In certain areas it is often not possible, using the symptoms of envenoming, to determine which species of snake has bitten the patient. Field studies using ELISA in Nigeria and Thailand have been successful in establishing the species responsible for envenoming. Current studies are in progress on the development of a rapid immunoassay which should be capable of detecting the biting species within 5-10 min of sampling from the admission patient. This will be useful for the clinician as it will enable the rapid detection of the species responsible for envenoming and, therefore, the use of the correct antivenom. Experimental work on the development of new methods of antivenom production includes immunization of experimental animals with venom/liposome preparations, the preparation of venom antigens using monoclonal antibodies on affinity columns, and recombinant deoxyribonucleic acid technology. Liposomal immunization requires only a single injection of venom to obtain a rapid, high level and protective immune response. Venom liposomes may also be given orally resulting in a serum immunoglobulin G immune response in experimental animals. Use of such a system may eventually result in immunization of man in areas of high snake bite incidence and mortality. PMID:2617643

  18. Envenoming by Crotalid Snake Chinese Moccasin Agkistrodon Acutus Bite - A Case Report.

    PubMed

    Valenta, Jiří; Stach, Zdeněk; Michálek, Pavel

    2015-01-01

    Although the bites caused by snakes from former Agkistrodon family in the areas of occurrence are not rare and even have certain epidemiologic importance, in case of envenoming by Deinagkistrodon acutus the clinical studies and case reports are very sporadic. This case report describes the envenoming of a private snake breeder bitten by young Chinese moccasin Deinagkistrodon acutus to the thumb of his left hand. He sought for a medical help immediately after snakebite. Patient presented with a local oedema on the affected limb, extending up to the half of the forearm. Laboratory examinations showed serious haemostatic disturbance with defibrination syndrome, immeasurably prolonged clotting times and extreme elevation of D-dimers. No other obvious clinical symptoms were present. Fibrinogen and fresh frozen plasma were administered because the antivenom was not available immediately. The specific antivenom was urgently imported 22 hours after the bite and administered at a dose of two vials three times until laboratory haemocoagulation parameters returned back to physiological values. PMID:26093669

  19. Black Bear Reactions to Venomous and Non-venomous Snakes in Eastern North America

    PubMed Central

    Rogers, Lynn L; Mansfield, Susan A; Hornby, Kathleen; Hornby, Stewart; Debruyn, Terry D; Mize, Malvin; Clark, Rulon; Burghardt, Gordon M

    2014-01-01

    Bears are often considered ecological equivalents of large primates, but the latter often respond with fear, avoidance, and alarm calls to snakes, both venomous and non-venomous, there is sparse information on how bears respond to snakes. We videotaped or directly observed natural encounters between black bears (Ursus americanus) and snakes. Inside the range of venomous snakes in Arkansas and West Virginia, adolescent and adult black bears reacted fearfully in seven of seven encounters upon becoming aware of venomous and non-venomous snakes; but in northern Michigan and Minnesota where venomous snakes have been absent for millennia, black bears showed little or no fear in four encounters with non-venomous snakes of three species. The possible roles of experience and evolution in bear reactions to snakes and vice versa are discussed. In all areas studied, black bears had difficulty to recognize non-moving snakes by smell or sight. Bears did not react until snakes moved in 11 of 12 encounters with non-moving timber rattlesnakes (Crotalus horridus) and four species of harmless snakes. However, in additional tests in this study, bears were repulsed by garter snakes that had excreted pungent anal exudates, which may help explain the absence of snakes, both venomous and harmless, in bear diets reported to date. PMID:25635152

  20. Snake venomics and venom gland transcriptomic analysis of Brazilian coral snakes, Micrurus altirostris and M. corallinus.

    PubMed

    Corrêa-Netto, Carlos; Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio de L M; Silva, Débora A; Ho, Paulo L; Leitão-de-Araújo, Moema; Alves, Maria Lúcia M; Sanz, Libia; Foguel, Débora; Zingali, Russolina Benedeta; Calvete, Juan J

    2011-08-24

    The venom proteomes of Micrurus altirostris and M. corallinus were analyzed by combining snake venomics and venom gland transcriptomic surveys. In both coral snake species, 3FTx and PLA(2) were the most abundant and diversified toxin families. 33 different 3FTxs and 13 PLA(2) proteins, accounting respectively for 79.5% and 13.7% of the total proteins, were identified in the venom of M. altirostris. The venom of M. corallinus comprised 10 3FTx (81.7% of the venom proteome) and 4 (11.9%) PLA(2) molecules. Transcriptomic data provided the full-length amino acid sequences of 18 (M. altirostris) and 10 (M. corallinus) 3FTxs, and 3 (M. altirostris) and 1 (M. corallinus) novel PLA(2) sequences. In addition, venom from each species contained single members of minor toxin families: 3 common (PIII-SVMP, C-type lectin-like, L-amino acid oxidase) and 4 species-specific (CRISP, Kunitz-type inhibitor, lysosomal acid lipase in M. altirostris; serine proteinase in M. corallinus) toxin classes. The finding of a lipase (LIPA) in the venom proteome and in the venom gland transcriptome of M. altirostris supports the view of a recruitment event predating the divergence of Elapidae and Viperidae more than 60 Mya. The toxin profile of both M. altirostris and M. corallinus venoms points to 3FTxs and PLA(2) molecules as the major players of the envenoming process. In M. altirostris venom, all major, and most minor, 3FTxs display highest similarity to type I α-neurotoxins, suggesting that these postsynaptically acting toxins may play the predominant role in the neurotoxic effect leading to peripheral paralysis, respiratory arrest, and death. M. corallinus venom posesses both, type I α-neurotoxins and a high-abundance (26% of the venom proteome) protein of subfamily XIX of 3FTxs, exhibiting similarity to bucandin from Malayan krait, Bungarus candidus, venom, which enhances acetylcholine release presynaptically. This finding may explain the presynaptic neurotoxicity of M. corallinus venom

  1. Unusual Stability of Messenger RNA in Snake Venom Reveals Gene Expression Dynamics of Venom Replenishment

    PubMed Central

    Currier, Rachel B.; Calvete, Juan J.; Sanz, Libia; Harrison, Robert A.; Rowley, Paul D.; Wagstaff, Simon C.

    2012-01-01

    Venom is a critical evolutionary innovation enabling venomous snakes to become successful limbless predators; it is therefore vital that venomous snakes possess a highly efficient venom production and delivery system to maintain their predatory arsenal. Here, we exploit the unusual stability of messenger RNA in venom to conduct, for the first time, quantitative PCR to characterise the dynamics of gene expression of newly synthesised venom proteins following venom depletion. Quantitative PCR directly from venom enables real-time dynamic studies of gene expression in the same animals because it circumvents the conventional requirement to sacrifice snakes to extract mRNA from dissected venom glands. Using qPCR and proteomic analysis, we show that gene expression and protein re-synthesis triggered by venom expulsion peaks between days 3–7 of the cycle of venom replenishment, with different protein families expressed in parallel. We demonstrate that venom re-synthesis occurs very rapidly following depletion of venom stores, presumably to ensure venomous snakes retain their ability to efficiently predate and remain defended from predators. The stability of mRNA in venom is biologically fascinating, and could significantly empower venom research by expanding opportunities to produce transcriptomes from historical venom stocks and rare or endangered venomous species, for new therapeutic, diagnostic and evolutionary studies. PMID:22879897

  2. Venom gland transcriptomics for identifying, cataloging, and characterizing venom proteins in snakes.

    PubMed

    Brahma, Rajeev Kungur; McCleary, Ryan J R; Kini, R Manjunatha; Doley, Robin

    2015-01-01

    Snake venoms are cocktails of protein toxins that play important roles in capture and digestion of prey. Significant qualitative and quantitative variation in snake venom composition has been observed among and within species. Understanding these variations in protein components is instrumental in interpreting clinical symptoms during human envenomation and in searching for novel venom proteins with potential therapeutic applications. In the last decade, transcriptomic analyses of venom glands have helped in understanding the composition of various snake venoms in great detail. Here we review transcriptomic analysis as a powerful tool for understanding venom profile, variation and evolution.

  3. Inhibition of hemorragic snake venom components: old and new approaches.

    PubMed

    Panfoli, Isabella; Calzia, Daniela; Ravera, Silvia; Morelli, Alessandro

    2010-04-01

    Snake venoms are complex toxin mixtures. Viperidae and Crotalidae venoms, which are hemotoxic, are responsible for most of the envenomations around the world. Administration of antivenins aimed at the neutralization of toxins in humans is prone to potential risks. Neutralization of snake venom toxins has been achieved through different approaches: plant extracts have been utilized in etnomedicine. Direct electric current from low voltage showed neutralizing properties against venom phospholipase A2 and metalloproteases. This mini-review summarizes new achievements in venom key component inhibition. A deeper knowledge of alternative ways to inhibit venom toxins may provide supplemental treatments to serum therapy.

  4. Orthogonal optimization of prokaryotic expression of a natural snake venom phospholipase A2 inhibitor from Sinonatrix annularis.

    PubMed

    Le, Zhen; Li, XingZhang; Yuan, Peng; Liu, Pi; Huang, Chunhong

    2015-12-15

    Phospholipase A2 (PLA2) is a calcium-dependent enzyme that is involved in inflammatory processes such as the liberation of free arachidonic acid from the membrane pool for the biosynthesis of eicosanoids. Snake venom are known containing PLA2s (svPLA2s) which exhibit a wide variety of pharmacological effects including neurotoxicity, cardiotoxicity, myotoxicity and hemorrhage. Therefore, inhibition of svPLA2 would be advantageous to successful envenomation treatment. A gamma type PLI (PLA2 inhibitor) has been extracted from the serum of Sinonatrix annularis, a non-venomous snake indigenous to China. This showed strong inhibition of Deinagkistrrodon acutus PLA2, however, the PLIγ level in the serum and snake resource are not sufficiently sustainable for further research. To overcome these limitations, we constructed a His6-PLIγ pET28 fusion expression vector and transformed Escherichia coli BL21. To improve the expression of PLIγ, an orthogonal experiment [L16(4)(5)] was performed to optimize induction parameters. The optimized condition was determined to be: induction by 0.4 mM isopropyl-β-D-thiogalactoside (IPTG) for 6 h to the recombinant BL21 after its OD600 was 0.8, with continuous shaking cultivation at 190 rpm and 35 °C. Under these conditions, the amount of expressed protein could reach 57 mg/L. The His6-PLIγ was purified by nickel affinity chromatography and renatured by On-column refolding. The resulting PLIγ showed a good inhibitory effect of enzymatic activities to venom PLA2 isolated from D. acutus. Moreover, the PLIγ had a wide anti-hemorrhage activities to D. acutus, Naja atra and Agkistrodon halys venom. PMID:26546697

  5. Orthogonal optimization of prokaryotic expression of a natural snake venom phospholipase A2 inhibitor from Sinonatrix annularis.

    PubMed

    Le, Zhen; Li, XingZhang; Yuan, Peng; Liu, Pi; Huang, Chunhong

    2015-12-15

    Phospholipase A2 (PLA2) is a calcium-dependent enzyme that is involved in inflammatory processes such as the liberation of free arachidonic acid from the membrane pool for the biosynthesis of eicosanoids. Snake venom are known containing PLA2s (svPLA2s) which exhibit a wide variety of pharmacological effects including neurotoxicity, cardiotoxicity, myotoxicity and hemorrhage. Therefore, inhibition of svPLA2 would be advantageous to successful envenomation treatment. A gamma type PLI (PLA2 inhibitor) has been extracted from the serum of Sinonatrix annularis, a non-venomous snake indigenous to China. This showed strong inhibition of Deinagkistrrodon acutus PLA2, however, the PLIγ level in the serum and snake resource are not sufficiently sustainable for further research. To overcome these limitations, we constructed a His6-PLIγ pET28 fusion expression vector and transformed Escherichia coli BL21. To improve the expression of PLIγ, an orthogonal experiment [L16(4)(5)] was performed to optimize induction parameters. The optimized condition was determined to be: induction by 0.4 mM isopropyl-β-D-thiogalactoside (IPTG) for 6 h to the recombinant BL21 after its OD600 was 0.8, with continuous shaking cultivation at 190 rpm and 35 °C. Under these conditions, the amount of expressed protein could reach 57 mg/L. The His6-PLIγ was purified by nickel affinity chromatography and renatured by On-column refolding. The resulting PLIγ showed a good inhibitory effect of enzymatic activities to venom PLA2 isolated from D. acutus. Moreover, the PLIγ had a wide anti-hemorrhage activities to D. acutus, Naja atra and Agkistrodon halys venom.

  6. Inhibitors of snake venoms and development of new therapeutics.

    PubMed

    Sánchez, Elda E; Rodríguez-Acosta, Alexis

    2008-01-01

    Natural inhibitors of snake venoms play a significant role in the ability to neutralize the degradation effects induced by venom toxins. It has been known for many years that animal sera and some plant extracts are competent in neutralizing snake venoms. The purpose of this review is to highlight the recent work that has been accomplished with natural inhibitors of snake venoms as well as revisiting the past research including those found in plants. The biomedical value of these natural inhibitors can lead to the development of new therapeutics for an assortment of diseases as well as contributing to efficient antivenoms for the treatment of ophidic accidents.

  7. Snake Venom: Any Clue for Antibiotics and CAM?

    PubMed Central

    2005-01-01

    Lately several naturally occurring peptides presenting antimicrobial activity have been described in the literature. However, snake venoms, which are an enormous source of peptides, have not been fully explored for searching such molecules. The aim of this work is to review the basis of antimicrobial mechanisms revealing snake venom as a feasible source for searching an antibiotic prototype. Therefore, it includes (i) a description of the constituents of the snake venoms involved in their main biological effects during the envenomation process; (ii) examples of snake venom molecules of commercial use; (iii) mechanisms of action of known antibiotics; and (iv) how the microorganisms can be resistant to antibiotics. This review also shows that snake venoms are not totally unexplored sources for antibiotics and complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). PMID:15841277

  8. IgE antibodies against snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Alonso, A; Scavini, L M; Marino, G A; Rodríguez, S M

    1995-01-01

    A similar event was detected in the clinical records of a small group of atopic patients living in the northern provinces of Argentina, i.e., they were bitten by a snake of the Bothrops species (or yarará) during their rural activities (woodcutters, cattle-drivers and farmers). Those who were bitten twice suffered an acute episode of hives and angioedema within 15 minutes after the snake bite. The presence of specific antibodies against Bothrops alternata (Ba) extract was detected by means of RAST for IgE and Ouchterlony and Boyden for IgG. The Ouchterlony also demonstrated crossreactivity among the venoms of the Bothrops species and the positivity of the six fractions obtained by DEAE-cellulose column fractionation against the horse anti-Ba serum. The Ba antigen induced a definite inhibition of the RAST. We presume that hives and angioedema in atopic patients immediately after a second snake bite could be attributed to the presence of a specific IgE antibody against the venom, and must not be misinterpreted with the toxic effects that appear later. PMID:7551202

  9. Novel transcripts in the maxillary venom glands of advanced snakes.

    PubMed

    Fry, Bryan G; Scheib, Holger; de L M Junqueira de Azevedo, Inacio; Silva, Debora Andrade; Casewell, Nicholas R

    2012-06-01

    Venom proteins are added to reptile venoms through duplication of a body protein gene, with the duplicate tissue-specifically expressed in the venom gland. Molecular scaffolds are recruited from a wide range of tissues and with a similar level of diversity of ancestral activity. Transcriptome studies have proven an effective and efficient tool for the discovery of novel toxin scaffolds. In this study, we applied venom gland transcriptomics to a wide taxonomical diversity of advanced snakes and recovered transcripts encoding three novel protein scaffold types lacking sequence homology to any previously characterised snake toxin type: lipocalin, phospholipase A2 (type IIE) and vitelline membrane outer layer protein. In addition, the first snake maxillary venom gland isoforms were sequenced of ribonuclease, which was only recently sequenced from lizard mandibular venom glands. Further, novel isoforms were also recovered for the only recently characterised veficolin toxin class also shared between lizard and snake venoms. The additional complexity of snake venoms has important implications not only for understanding their molecular evolution, but also reinforces the tremendous importance of venoms as a diverse bio-resource.

  10. Human snake bite victims: the successful detection of circulating snake venom by radiommunoassay,.

    PubMed

    Sutherland, S K; Couter, A R; Broad, A J

    1975-01-11

    A new solid-phase radioimmunoassay has been developed which allows positive identification of the type of snake venom in human tissue and fluids and its accurate quantitation. Tiger snake venom at a level of 210 ng/ml was detected post mortem in the serum of a child, and brown snake venom was detected in two adults bitten by unidentified snakes. Apart from forensic applications, the assay will be useful in studying clinical aspects of envenomation and the use of antivenenes. PMID:1128354

  11. Practical applications of snake venom toxins in haemostasis.

    PubMed

    Marsh, Neville; Williams, Vaughan

    2005-06-15

    Snake venom toxins affecting haemostasis have facilitated extensively the routine assays of haemostatic parameters in the coagulation laboratory. Snake venom thrombin-like enzymes (SVTLE) are used for fibrinogen/fibrinogen breakdown product assay and for the detection of fibrinogen dysfunction. SVTLE are not inhibited by heparin and can thus can be used for assaying antithrombin III and other haemostatic variables in heparin-containing samples. Snake venoms are a rich source of prothrombin activators and these are utilised in prothrombin assays, for studying dysprothrombinaemias and for preparing meizothrombin and non-enzymic forms of prothrombin. Russell's viper (Daboia russelli) venom (RVV) contains toxins which have been used to assay blood clotting factors V, VII, X, platelet factor 3 and, importantly, lupus anticoagulants (LA). Other prothrombin activators (from the taipan, Australian brown snake and saw-scaled viper) have now been used to assay LA. Protein C and activated protein C resistance can be measured by means of RVV and Protac, a fast acting inhibitor from Southern copperhead snake venom and von Willebrand factor can be studied with botrocetin from Bothrops jararaca venom. The disintegrins, a large family of Arg-Gly-Asp (RGD)-containing snake venom proteins, show potential for studying platelet glycoprotein receptors, notably, GPIIb/IIIa and Ib. Snake venom toxins affecting haemostasis are also used in the therapeutic setting: Ancrod (from the Malayan pit viper, Calloselasma rhodostoma), in particular, has been used as an anticoagulant to achieve 'therapeutic defibrination'. Other snake venom proteins show promise in the treatment of a range of haemostatic disorders. PMID:15922782

  12. Expression of venom gene homologs in diverse python tissues suggests a new model for the evolution of snake venom.

    PubMed

    Reyes-Velasco, Jacobo; Card, Daren C; Andrew, Audra L; Shaney, Kyle J; Adams, Richard H; Schield, Drew R; Casewell, Nicholas R; Mackessy, Stephen P; Castoe, Todd A

    2015-01-01

    Snake venom gene evolution has been studied intensively over the past several decades, yet most previous studies have lacked the context of complete snake genomes and the full context of gene expression across diverse snake tissues. We took a novel approach to studying snake venom evolution by leveraging the complete genome of the Burmese python, including information from tissue-specific patterns of gene expression. We identified the orthologs of snake venom genes in the python genome, and conducted detailed analysis of gene expression of these venom homologs to identify patterns that differ between snake venom gene families and all other genes. We found that venom gene homologs in the python are expressed in many different tissues outside of oral glands, which illustrates the pitfalls of using transcriptomic data alone to define "venom toxins." We hypothesize that the python may represent an ancestral state prior to major venom development, which is supported by our finding that the expansion of venom gene families is largely restricted to highly venomous caenophidian snakes. Therefore, the python provides insight into biases in which genes were recruited for snake venom systems. Python venom homologs are generally expressed at lower levels, have higher variance among tissues, and are expressed in fewer organs compared with all other python genes. We propose a model for the evolution of snake venoms in which venom genes are recruited preferentially from genes with particular expression profile characteristics, which facilitate a nearly neutral transition toward specialized venom system expression.

  13. Use of snake venom fractions in the coagulation laboratory.

    PubMed

    Marsh, N A

    1998-07-01

    Snake venom toxins are now regularly used in the coagulation laboratory for assaying haemostatic parameters and as coagulation reagents. Snake venom thrombin-like enzymes (SVTLE) are used for fibrinogen and fibrinogen breakdown product assay as well as detecting dysfibrinogenaemias. Significantly, because SVTLE are not inhibited by heparin, they can be used for defibrinating samples that contain the anticoagulant before assay of haemostatic variables. Prothrombin activators are found in many snake venoms and are used in prothrombin assays, for studying dysprothrombinaemias and preparing meizothrombin and non-enzymic prothrombin. Russell's viper (Daboia russelli) venom (RVV) contains a number of compounds useful in the assay of factors V, VII, X, platelet factor 3 and lupus anticoagulants. Activators from the taipan, Australian brown snake and saw-scaled viper have been used to assay lupus anticoagulants. Protein C and activated protein C resistance can be measured by means of RVV and Protac, a fast acting inhibitor from Southern copperhead snake venom and von Willebrand factor can be studied with Botrocetin from Bothrops jararaca venom. Finally, phospholipase A2 enzymes and the disintegrins, a family of Arg-Gly-Asp (RGD)-containing proteins found in snake venoms, show great potential for the study of haemostasis including, notably, platelet glycoprotein receptors GPIIb/IIIa and Ib. PMID:9712287

  14. Cloning of cDNAs and molecular characterisation of C-type lectin-like proteins from snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Feng, Jian; Chen, Tianbao; Zhou, Mei; Shaw, Chris

    2012-12-15

    C-type lectin-like proteins (CTLPs) isolated from snake venoms are the largest and most complex non-mammalian vertebrate C-type lectin-like domain family. In the present study, we simultaneously amplified four cDNAs encoding different types of CTLP subunits from the venoms of two different species of snakes by RT-PCR with a single sense primer and a nested universal primer - two CTLP subunit-encoding cDNAs were cloned from Deinagkistrodon acutus venom and two from Agkistrodon halys Pallas venom. All four cloned CTLP subunits exhibited typical motifs in their corresponding domain regions but with relatively-low sequence similarities to each other. Compared with previously-published CTLPs, the four cloned CTLPs subunits showed slight variations in the calcium-binding sites and the disulphide bonding patterns. To our knowledge, these data constitute the first example of co-expression of CTLP platelet glycoprotein Ib-binding subunits and coagulation factors in Agkistrodon halys Pallas venom. PMID:23010162

  15. Venomous snakebite in Thailand. I: Medically important snakes.

    PubMed

    Chanhome, L; Cox, M J; Wilde, H; Jintakoon, P; Chaiyabutr, N; Sitprija, V

    1998-05-01

    Thailand has an abundance of venomous snakes. Among the neurotoxic family Elapidae, there are three species of the genus Naja (cobras), three of the genus Bungarus (kraits), and the king cobra of the genus Ophiophagus. Other Elapidae snakes in Thailand include sea snakes and Asian coral snakes of the genus Calliophis. They have potent venoms but rarely bite humans. Tissue and hemotoxic snakes are represented by family Viperidae, subfamilies Viperinae and Crotalinae. They remain an occupational hazard for farmers and rubber tappers, causing serious morbidity but only rare deaths, since competent treatment is now widely available throughout Thailand. Purified equine antivenin is manufactured locally for the monocled and Siamese spitting cobras (Naja kaouthia and N. siamensis), king cobra (Ophiophagus hannah), banded krait (Bungarus fasciatus), most green pit vipers (Trimeresurus sp.), Malayan pit viper (Calloselasma rhodostoma), and the Siamese Russell's viper (Daboia russelli siamensis).

  16. Practical applications of snake venom toxins in haemostasis.

    PubMed

    Marsh, N A; Fyffe, T L

    1996-01-01

    Snake venom toxins have an established role in the coagulation laboratory for the assay of haemostatic parameters and a potential role for therapeutic treatment of thrombotic disorders. In the laboratory, snake venom thrombin-like enzymes (SVTLEs) are used for the assay of fibrinogen and detection of fibrinogen breakdown products and dysfibrinogenaemias. Importantly, because SVTLEs are not inhibited by heparin, they can be used for assaying antithrombin III and other parameters in samples which contain heparin. Prothrombin activators occur in many snake venoms and these have become established in the assay of prothrombin, in the study of dysprothrombinaemias and in the preparation of meizothrombin and non enzymic forms of prothrombin. Russell's viper (Daboia russelli) venom contains a number of useful compounds including toxins which can be used to assay blood clotting factors V, VII, X, platelet factor 3 and lupus anticoagulants (LA). More recently, activators from the taipan, Australian brown snake and saw-scaled viper have been used to assay LA. Proteins C and S can be measured by means of protac, a fast acting inhibitor from Southern copperhead snake venom and von Willebrand factor can be studied with botrocetin from Bothrops jararaca venom. The disintegrins, a large family of Arg-Gly-Asp (RGD)-containing proteins found in snake venoms, show great potential for the study of platelet glycoprotein receptors, notably, GPIIb/IIIa and Ib, and in the treatment of arterial thrombotic disease. Established SVTLEs used in clinical practice include ancrod and defibrase although success with these agents has been limited. A further group of enzymes under consideration as thrombolytic agents are the fibrinogenases. PMID:9425723

  17. A novel recombinant fibrinogenase of Agkistrodon acutus venom protects against hyperacute rejection via degradation of complements.

    PubMed

    Lin, Xi; Qi, Jie-Zhen; Chen, Ming-Hui; Qiu, Bi-Tao; Huang, Zhen-Hua; Qiu, Peng-Xin; Chen, Jia-Shu; Yan, Guang-Mei

    2013-03-15

    Hyperacute rejection (HAR) is a main barrier in xenotransplantation, which is mediated by the combination of natural antibody to the xenograft and complement activation. Current therapies have focus on the inhibition of complement by development of complement inhibitor and transgenic animal organ. Here, we investigated the effects of rFII, a recombinant fibrinogenase from Agkistrodon acutus venom, on complement and HAR. The degradation effect of rFII on complement was tested by SDS-PAGE, CH50 examination, ELISA Kit and cofocal immunofluorescence microscopy in vitro and in vivo. An ex-vivo rat-to-human perfusion model and a vivo guinea-pig-to-rat heat HAR model were used to determine the protection of rFII against HAR. Our investigation indicated that rFII could significantly degrade human C5, C6, and C9, decrease the activity of complement, and inhibit the MAC deposition on HUVECs membrane in vitro. In addition, serum levels of C1q, C3 and C4 in rat were gradually reduced after infusion of rFII. Importantly, in an ex vivo rat-to-human perfusion model, the survival of rat hearts perfused with human serum treated with rFII (83.36 ± 16.63 min) were significantly longer than that of hearts perfused with fresh human serum(15.94 ± 4.75 min). At the time of 15 minutes after perfusion, functions of hearts added with 50 ug/ml rFII sustained well with heart rates at 283 ± 65.32 beats/minute and LVDP at 13.70 ± 5.45 Kpa, while that of hearts perfused with fresh human serum were severely damaged by HAR with heart rates at 107.77 ± 40.31 beats/minute and LVDP at 1.01 ± 0.83 Kpa. We also found that rFII significantly decreased the levels of C1q, C3 and C4 in human fresh serum perfusate. In a vivo guinea-pig-to-rat heat HAR model, the survival of rat hearts treated with rFII were significantly longer than that of hearts perfused with normal saline; and relieved heart damage by complete activation. Our finding demonstrates the anti-complement property of rFII and its

  18. [Application of capillary zone electrophoresis in the interaction analysis of protein C with protein C activator from Agkistrodon acutus venom].

    PubMed

    Sun, Yao; Bao, Pengju; Zhang, Genbao

    2013-01-01

    A new capillary zone electrophoresis method (CZE) has been established for the interaction analysis of protein C (PC) with a protein C activator (PCA) from Agkistrodon acutus venom. The analysis was performed on an uncoated fused-silica capillary with 75 microm i.d. and a total length of 60.2 cm (50 cm to the detector) with a buffer solution of 50 mmol/L Tris-HCl (pH 7.4) and 198 nm of wavelength. The factors which influence the separation of the PCA, such as buffer solution and ion concentration, and the interaction between the PCA and PC incubated for different times at 37.5 degrees C were studied. The linear range was from 10 to 300 mg/L. The limit of detection was 3 mg/L (S/N = 3). The relative standard deviation (RSD) for the migration time of the PCA was 0.56%. The RSD for the peak area was 3.8% (n = 6). The equal volumes of the PCA (200 mg/L) and PC (60 mg/L) were incubated for five minutes, at which their binding rate reached the maximum. And no hydrolyzed peptide chain from PC was found in the electropherogram. The PCA from Agkistrodon acutus venom could activate PC directly through changing the space conformation of PC. The method is simple, and highly sensitive with high resolution, and will provide important theoretical basis for the rapid detection of venom proteins and their activities in the future. PMID:23667991

  19. Detection of Snake Venom in Post-Antivenom Samples by Dissociation Treatment Followed by Enzyme Immunoassay

    PubMed Central

    Maduwage, Kalana P.; O’Leary, Margaret A.; Silva, Anjana; Isbister, Geoffrey K.

    2016-01-01

    Venom detection is crucial for confirmation of envenomation and snake type in snake-bite patients. Enzyme immunoassay (EIA) is used to detect venom, but antivenom in samples prevents venom detection. We aimed to detect snake venom in post-antivenom samples after dissociating venom-antivenom complexes with glycine-HCl (pH 2.2) and heating for 30 min at 950 °C. Serum samples underwent dissociation treatment and then Russell’s viper venom or Australian elapid venom measured by EIA. In confirmed Russell’s viper bites with venom detected pre-antivenom (positive controls), no venom was detected in untreated post-antivenom samples, but was after dissociation treatment. In 104 non-envenomed patients (negative controls), no venom was detected after dissociation treatment. In suspected Russell’s viper bites, ten patients with no pre-antivenom samples had venom detected in post-antivenom samples after dissociation treatment. In 20 patients with no venom detected pre-antivenom, 13 had venom detected post-antivenom after dissociation treatment. In another 85 suspected Russell’s viper bites with no venom detected pre-antivenom, 50 had venom detected after dissociation treatment. Dissociation treatment was also successful for Australian snake envenomation including taipan, mulga, tiger snake and brown snake. Snake venom can be detected by EIA in post-antivenom samples after dissociation treatment allowing confirmation of diagnosis of envenomation post-antivenom. PMID:27136587

  20. Detection of Snake Venom in Post-Antivenom Samples by Dissociation Treatment Followed by Enzyme Immunoassay.

    PubMed

    Maduwage, Kalana P; O'Leary, Margaret A; Silva, Anjana; Isbister, Geoffrey K

    2016-01-01

    Venom detection is crucial for confirmation of envenomation and snake type in snake-bite patients. Enzyme immunoassay (EIA) is used to detect venom, but antivenom in samples prevents venom detection. We aimed to detect snake venom in post-antivenom samples after dissociating venom-antivenom complexes with glycine-HCl (pH 2.2) and heating for 30 min at 950 °C. Serum samples underwent dissociation treatment and then Russell's viper venom or Australian elapid venom measured by EIA. In confirmed Russell's viper bites with venom detected pre-antivenom (positive controls), no venom was detected in untreated post-antivenom samples, but was after dissociation treatment. In 104 non-envenomed patients (negative controls), no venom was detected after dissociation treatment. In suspected Russell's viper bites, ten patients with no pre-antivenom samples had venom detected in post-antivenom samples after dissociation treatment. In 20 patients with no venom detected pre-antivenom, 13 had venom detected post-antivenom after dissociation treatment. In another 85 suspected Russell's viper bites with no venom detected pre-antivenom, 50 had venom detected after dissociation treatment. Dissociation treatment was also successful for Australian snake envenomation including taipan, mulga, tiger snake and brown snake. Snake venom can be detected by EIA in post-antivenom samples after dissociation treatment allowing confirmation of diagnosis of envenomation post-antivenom. PMID:27136587

  1. SNAKE VENOM POISONING IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

    PubMed Central

    Russell, Findlay E.

    1960-01-01

    The annual incidence of rattlesnake bite in Southern California is approximately 1 per 75,000 population. The case fatality rate is 1.5 per cent. The snakes implicated in the greatest number of injuries are the southern Pacific rattlesnake, the red diamond rattlesnake and the sidewinder. Rattlesnake venom produces deleterious changes in the blood cells, defects in blood coagulation, injury to the intimal linings of vessels, damage to the heart muscle, alterations in the respiratory cycle and, to a lesser extent, changes in neuromuscular conduction. The most frequently observed symptoms and signs following ophidiasis in this area are swelling and edema, pain, ecchymosis, swelling of the regional lymph nodes, weakness, sweating, increased body temperature, faintness, and hemorrhagic vesiculations. First aid treatment consists of immobilization of the affected part, application of a constriction band, incision and suction with subsequent local application of ice packs. Treatment in hospital consists of administration of antivenin, antitetanus agent and antibiotic. Transfusions, oxygen and a corticosteroid may be indicated in some cases. PMID:13744840

  2. Venomous snake bites, scorpions, and spiders.

    PubMed

    Kularatne, S A M; Senanayake, Nimal

    2014-01-01

    Neurologic dysfunction due to natural neurotoxins is an important, but neglected, public health hazard in many parts of the world, particularly in the tropics. These toxins are produced by or found among a variety of live forms that include venomous snakes, arthropods such as scorpions, spiders, centipedes, stinging insects (Hymenoptera), ticks, certain poisonous fish, shellfish, crabs, cone shells, skin secretions of dart-poison frogs, and bacterial poisons such as botulinum toxin. These toxins commonly act on neuromuscular transmission at the neuromuscular junction where acetylcholine is the neurotransmitter, but in certain situations the toxins interfere with neurotransmitters such as GABA, noradrenaline, adrenaline, dopamine, and γ-aminobutyrate. Of the toxins, α-toxins and κ-toxins (e.g., Chinese krait, Bungarus multicinctus) act on the postsynaptic membrane, blocking the receptors, whilst β-toxin (e.g., common krait, B. caeruleus) acts on the presynaptic membrane, causing impairment of acetylcholine release. Conversely, dendrotoxins of the African mamba enhance acetylcholine release. The toxins of scorpions and spiders commonly interfere with voltage-gated ion channels. Clinically, the cardinal manifestation is muscle paralysis. In severe cases respiratory paralysis could be fatal. Effective antivenoms are the mainstay of treatment of envenoming, but their lack of availability is the major concern in the regions of the globe where they are desperately needed. Interestingly, some toxins have proved to be valuable pharmaceutical agents, while some others are widely exploited to study neuromuscular physiology and pathology.

  3. [Study on the venoms of the principal venomous snakes from French Guiana and the neutralization].

    PubMed

    Estévez, J; Magaña, P; Chippaux, J P; Vidal, N; Mancilla, R; Paniagua, J F; de Roodt, A R

    2008-10-01

    We studied some biochemical, toxic and immunological characteristics of the venoms of Bothrops atrox, Bothrops brazili and Lachesis muta, Viperidae responsible for most of the bites of venomous snakes in French Guiana. Chromatographic (HPLC) and electrophoretical profiles (SDS-PAGE), lethal, hemorrhagic, defibrinogenating, coagulant, thrombin like, proteolytic, fibrino(geno)lytic and phospholipase activities were studied. In addition, the neutralization of some toxic activities conferred by four antivenins was compared. The chromatographic and electrophoretic profiles were different for the three venoms, showing differences between Bothrops and L. muta venoms. In general, bothropic venoms showed the highest toxic and enzymatic activities, while the venom of L. muta showed the lowest lethal, hemorrhagic and coagulant activities. The enzymes of bothropic venoms responsible for gelatinolytic activity were around 50-90 kDa. All the venoms were able to hydrolyze a and beta chains of the fibrinogen, showing different patterns of degradation. Although all the antivenoms tested were effective to various degrees in neutralizing the venom of B. brazili and B. atrox, neutralization of L. muta venom was significantly better achieved using the antivenom including this venom in its immunogenic mixture. For the neutralization of L. muta venom, homologous or polyvalent antivenoms that include the "bushmaster" venom in their immunogenic mixture should be preferred. PMID:18956820

  4. Pro-inflammatory activities in elapid snake venoms.

    PubMed Central

    Tambourgi, D. V.; dos Santos, M. C.; Furtado, M. de F.; de Freitas, M. C.; da Silva, W. D.; Kipnis, T. L.

    1994-01-01

    1. Snake venoms from the genera Micrurus (M. ibiboboca and M. spixii) and Naja (N. naja, N. melanoleuca and N. nigricollis) were analysed, using biological and immunochemical methods, to detect pro-inflammatory activities, cobra venom factor (COF), proteolytic enzymes, thrombin-like substances, haemorrhagic and oedema-producing substances. 2. The venoms of the five snake species activate the complement system (C) in normal human serum (NHS) in a dose-related fashion, at concentrations ranging from 5 micrograms to 200 micrograms ml-1 serum. Electrophoretic conversion of C3 was observed with all venoms in NHS containing normal concentrations of Ca2+ and Mg2+, but only by venoms from N. naja and N. melanoleuca when Ca2+ was chelated by adding Mg(2+)-EGTA. 3. Purified human C3 was electrophoretically converted, in the absence of other C components, by the venoms from N. naja, N. nigricollis and M. ibiboboca. However, only the venoms from N. naja and N. melanoleuca contained a 144 kDa protein revealed in Western blot with sera against COF or human C3. 4. All venoms, at minimum concentrations of 30 ng ml-1, were capable of lysing sheep red blood cells, also in a dose-related fashion, when incubated with these cells in presence of egg yolk as a source of lecithin. Although the venoms from M. spixii and N. nigricollis showed detectable thrombin-like activity, these and the other venoms were free of proteolytic activity when fibrin, gelatin and casein, were used as substrates. 5. When tested on mice skin, all five venoms were capable of inducing an increase in vascular permeability and oedema, but were devoid of haemorrhagic producing substances (haemorrhagins).(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) Images Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 PMID:7921595

  5. [Biogeographical distribution of snakes in Cameroon: the case of venomous snakes].

    PubMed

    Gonwouo, N L; LeBreton, M; Chirio, L; Ngassam, P; Ngoa, L E; Dzikouk, G

    2005-11-01

    A preliminary analysis of the distribution of snakes captured in Cameroon between 1999 and 2004 is presented in this study. This work helps to provide a better understanding of the distribution of the venomous snakes. The main focus of this study was to identify regions of high diversity of venomous species, a useful step towards developing a national strategy of snakebite care and antivenom distribution. We recorded 4,910 specimens of 150 species from 361 localities throughout Cameroon. Among the ten provinces in Cameroon, the southwest province recorded the highest number of venomous snakes. Diversity was less in the far-north province, but the high abundance of Echis ocellatus seems to be responsible for many snake bites in the region. Of all venomous snakes, the forest cobra Naja melanoleuca was the most abundant in the forest region. The humid savannah region was dominated by Causus maculatus while the Sahelian part by Echis ocellatus. Given the abundance and high snake bite cases of the latter in the region, snakebite care from a national point of view should begin from the far-north towards the forest region of the south-west Cameroon.

  6. Natural Inhibitors of Snake Venom Metalloendopeptidases: History and Current Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Bastos, Viviane A.; Gomes-Neto, Francisco; Perales, Jonas; Neves-Ferreira, Ana Gisele C.; Valente, Richard H.

    2016-01-01

    The research on natural snake venom metalloendopeptidase inhibitors (SVMPIs) began in the 18th century with the pioneering work of Fontana on the resistance that vipers exhibited to their own venom. During the past 40 years, SVMPIs have been isolated mainly from the sera of resistant animals, and characterized to different extents. They are acidic oligomeric glycoproteins that remain biologically active over a wide range of pH and temperature values. Based on primary structure determination, mammalian plasmatic SVMPIs are classified as members of the immunoglobulin (Ig) supergene protein family, while the one isolated from muscle belongs to the ficolin/opsonin P35 family. On the other hand, SVMPIs from snake plasma have been placed in the cystatin superfamily. These natural antitoxins constitute the first line of defense against snake venoms, inhibiting the catalytic activities of snake venom metalloendopeptidases through the establishment of high-affinity, non-covalent interactions. This review presents a historical account of the field of natural resistance, summarizing its main discoveries and current challenges, which are mostly related to the limitations that preclude three-dimensional structural determinations of these inhibitors using “gold-standard” methods; perspectives on how to circumvent such limitations are presented. Potential applications of these SVMPIs in medicine are also highlighted. PMID:27571103

  7. Natural Inhibitors of Snake Venom Metalloendopeptidases: History and Current Challenges.

    PubMed

    Bastos, Viviane A; Gomes-Neto, Francisco; Perales, Jonas; Neves-Ferreira, Ana Gisele C; Valente, Richard H

    2016-01-01

    The research on natural snake venom metalloendopeptidase inhibitors (SVMPIs) began in the 18th century with the pioneering work of Fontana on the resistance that vipers exhibited to their own venom. During the past 40 years, SVMPIs have been isolated mainly from the sera of resistant animals, and characterized to different extents. They are acidic oligomeric glycoproteins that remain biologically active over a wide range of pH and temperature values. Based on primary structure determination, mammalian plasmatic SVMPIs are classified as members of the immunoglobulin (Ig) supergene protein family, while the one isolated from muscle belongs to the ficolin/opsonin P35 family. On the other hand, SVMPIs from snake plasma have been placed in the cystatin superfamily. These natural antitoxins constitute the first line of defense against snake venoms, inhibiting the catalytic activities of snake venom metalloendopeptidases through the establishment of high-affinity, non-covalent interactions. This review presents a historical account of the field of natural resistance, summarizing its main discoveries and current challenges, which are mostly related to the limitations that preclude three-dimensional structural determinations of these inhibitors using "gold-standard" methods; perspectives on how to circumvent such limitations are presented. Potential applications of these SVMPIs in medicine are also highlighted. PMID:27571103

  8. [Understanding snake venoms: 50 years of research in Latin America].

    PubMed

    Gutiérrez, José María

    2002-06-01

    As a tribute to Revista de Biología Tropical in its 50th anniversary, this review describes some of the main research efforts carried out in the study of the chemical composition and the mechanism of action of toxins present in the venoms of snakes distributed in Latin America. Venom proteins involved in neurotoxicity, coagulopathies, hemorrhage and muscle necrosis are discussed, together with a description of the inflammatory reactions elicited by these venoms and toxins. In addition, the search for inhibitory substances present in plants and animals that may be utilized in the neutralization of venoms is analyzed. Some of the clinical studies performed on snakebite envenomations in Latin America are also reviewed, together with the development of technologies aimed at improving the quality of antivenoms produced in the region. Toxinology has become a fruitful and stimulating research field in Latin America which has contributed to a better understanding of snake venoms as well as to an improved management of snake bitten patients.

  9. Venom Down Under: Dynamic Evolution of Australian Elapid Snake Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Jackson, Timothy N. W.; Sunagar, Kartik; Undheim, Eivind A. B.; Koludarov, Ivan; Chan, Angelo H. C.; Sanders, Kate; Ali, Syed A.; Hendrikx, Iwan; Dunstan, Nathan; Fry, Bryan G.

    2013-01-01

    Despite the unparalleled diversity of venomous snakes in Australia, research has concentrated on a handful of medically significant species and even of these very few toxins have been fully sequenced. In this study, venom gland transcriptomes were sequenced from eleven species of small Australian elapid snakes, from eleven genera, spanning a broad phylogenetic range. The particularly large number of sequences obtained for three-finger toxin (3FTx) peptides allowed for robust reconstructions of their dynamic molecular evolutionary histories. We demonstrated that each species preferentially favoured different types of α-neurotoxic 3FTx, probably as a result of differing feeding ecologies. The three forms of α-neurotoxin [Type I (also known as (aka): short-chain), Type II (aka: long-chain) and Type III] not only adopted differential rates of evolution, but have also conserved a diversity of residues, presumably to potentiate prey-specific toxicity. Despite these differences, the different α-neurotoxin types were shown to accumulate mutations in similar regions of the protein, largely in the loops and structurally unimportant regions, highlighting the significant role of focal mutagenesis. We theorize that this phenomenon not only affects toxin potency or specificity, but also generates necessary variation for preventing/delaying prey animals from acquiring venom-resistance. This study also recovered the first full-length sequences for multimeric phospholipase A2 (PLA2) ‘taipoxin/paradoxin’ subunits from non-Oxyuranus species, confirming the early recruitment of this extremely potent neurotoxin complex to the venom arsenal of Australian elapid snakes. We also recovered the first natriuretic peptides from an elapid that lack the derived C-terminal tail and resemble the plesiotypic form (ancestral character state) found in viper venoms. This provides supporting evidence for a single early recruitment of natriuretic peptides into snake venoms. Novel forms of kunitz

  10. Wide distribution of cysteine-rich secretory proteins in snake venoms: isolation and cloning of novel snake venom cysteine-rich secretory proteins.

    PubMed

    Yamazaki, Yasuo; Hyodo, Fumiko; Morita, Takashi

    2003-04-01

    Cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRISPs) are found in epididymis and granules of mammals, and they are thought to function in sperm maturation and in the immune system. Recently, we isolated and obtained clones for novel snake venom proteins that are classified as CRISP family proteins. To elucidate the distribution of snake venom CRISP family proteins, we evaluated a wide range of venoms for immuno-cross-reactivity. Then we isolated, characterized, and cloned genes for three novel CRISP family proteins (piscivorin, ophanin, and catrin) from the venom of eastern cottonmouth (Agkistrodon piscivorus piscivorus), king cobra (Ophiophagus hannah), and western diamondback rattlesnake (Crotalus atrox). Our results show the wide distribution of snake venom CRISP family proteins among Viperidae and Elapidae from different continents, indicating that CRISP family proteins compose a new group of snake venom proteins. PMID:12646276

  11. Snake venoms: A brief treatise on etymology, origins of terminology, and definitions.

    PubMed

    Weinstein, Scott A

    2015-09-01

    The ancient perceptions of "venomous" and "poisonous snakes", as well as the Indo-European (IE) etymological origins of the term "venom" specifically associated with snakes are considered. Although several ancient cultures perceived snakes as symbols of fecundity and renewal, concurrent beliefs also associated venomous snakes with undesirable human characteristics or as portending non-propitious events. The respective IE roots of the terms "venom" and "poison", "wen" and "poi" refer to desire or the act of ingesting liquids. The origin of the term, "venom", is associated with polytheistic cults that emphasized attainment of desires sometimes assisted by "love potions", a term later interpolated with the word, "poison". Specific interpretation of the term, venom, has varied since its first probable use in the mid-Thirteenth Century. The definition of snake venom has long been contended, and interpretations have often reflected emphasis on the pharmacological or experimental toxicity of medically relevant snake venoms with less regard for the basic biological bases of these venoms, as well as those from snakes with no known medical significance. Several definitions of "snake venom" and their defining criteria are reviewed, and critical consideration is given to traditional criteria that might facilitate the future establishment of a biologically accurate definition. PMID:26166305

  12. Snake venoms: A brief treatise on etymology, origins of terminology, and definitions.

    PubMed

    Weinstein, Scott A

    2015-09-01

    The ancient perceptions of "venomous" and "poisonous snakes", as well as the Indo-European (IE) etymological origins of the term "venom" specifically associated with snakes are considered. Although several ancient cultures perceived snakes as symbols of fecundity and renewal, concurrent beliefs also associated venomous snakes with undesirable human characteristics or as portending non-propitious events. The respective IE roots of the terms "venom" and "poison", "wen" and "poi" refer to desire or the act of ingesting liquids. The origin of the term, "venom", is associated with polytheistic cults that emphasized attainment of desires sometimes assisted by "love potions", a term later interpolated with the word, "poison". Specific interpretation of the term, venom, has varied since its first probable use in the mid-Thirteenth Century. The definition of snake venom has long been contended, and interpretations have often reflected emphasis on the pharmacological or experimental toxicity of medically relevant snake venoms with less regard for the basic biological bases of these venoms, as well as those from snakes with no known medical significance. Several definitions of "snake venom" and their defining criteria are reviewed, and critical consideration is given to traditional criteria that might facilitate the future establishment of a biologically accurate definition.

  13. Cloning and characterisation of novel cystatins from elapid snake venom glands.

    PubMed

    Richards, Renée; St Pierre, Liam; Trabi, Manuela; Johnson, Lambro A; de Jersey, John; Masci, Paul P; Lavin, Martin F

    2011-04-01

    Snake venoms contain a complex mixture of polypeptides that modulate prey homeostatic mechanisms through highly specific and targeted interactions. In this study we have identified and characterised cystatin-like cysteine-protease inhibitors from elapid snake venoms for the first time. Novel cystatin sequences were cloned from 12 of 13 elapid snake venom glands and the protein was detected, albeit at very low levels, in a total of 22 venoms. One highly conserved isoform, which displayed close sequence identity with family 2 cystatins, was detected in each elapid snake. Crude Austrelaps superbus (Australian lowland copperhead) snake venom inhibited papain, and a recombinant form of A. superbus cystatin inhibited cathepsin L ≅ papain > cathepsin B, with no inhibition observed for calpain or legumain. While snake venom cystatins have truncated N-termini, sequence alignment and structural modelling suggested that the evolutionarily conserved Gly-11 of family 2 cystatins, essential for cysteine protease inhibition, is conserved in snake venom cystatins as Gly-3. This was confirmed by mutagenesis at the Gly-3 site, which increased the dissociation constant for papain by 10(4)-fold. These data demonstrate that elapid snake venom cystatins are novel members of the type 2 family. The widespread, low level expression of type 2 cystatins in snake venom, as well as the presence of only one highly conserved isoform in each species, imply essential housekeeping or regulatory roles for these proteins.

  14. Medically important differences in snake venom composition are dictated by distinct postgenomic mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Casewell, Nicholas R.; Wagstaff, Simon C.; Wüster, Wolfgang; Cook, Darren A. N.; Bolton, Fiona M. S.; King, Sarah I.; Pla, Davinia; Sanz, Libia; Calvete, Juan J.; Harrison, Robert A.

    2014-01-01

    Variation in venom composition is a ubiquitous phenomenon in snakes and occurs both interspecifically and intraspecifically. Venom variation can have severe outcomes for snakebite victims by rendering the specific antibodies found in antivenoms ineffective against heterologous toxins found in different venoms. The rapid evolutionary expansion of different toxin-encoding gene families in different snake lineages is widely perceived as the main cause of venom variation. However, this view is simplistic and disregards the understudied influence that processes acting on gene transcription and translation may have on the production of the venom proteome. Here, we assess the venom composition of six related viperid snakes and compare interspecific changes in the number of toxin genes, their transcription in the venom gland, and their translation into proteins secreted in venom. Our results reveal that multiple levels of regulation are responsible for generating variation in venom composition between related snake species. We demonstrate that differential levels of toxin transcription, translation, and their posttranslational modification have a substantial impact upon the resulting venom protein mixture. Notably, these processes act to varying extents on different toxin paralogs found in different snakes and are therefore likely to be as important as ancestral gene duplication events for generating compositionally distinct venom proteomes. Our results suggest that these processes may also contribute to altering the toxicity of snake venoms, and we demonstrate how this variability can undermine the treatment of a neglected tropical disease, snakebite. PMID:24927555

  15. [Venomous and poisonous animals. III. Elapidae snake envenomation].

    PubMed

    Chippaux, J P

    2007-02-01

    Envenomation by Elapidae snakes is less frequent than by Viperidae snakes but represents a true medical emergency due to rapid progression of cobra syndrome. Elapidae venom contains neurotoxins that paralyze striated muscles especially in the thoracic cavity. Respiratory paralysis can occur within a few hours and is preceded by neurological symptoms (local paresthesia and paresis progressing to the cranial nerves). When cobra envenomation is suspected, antivenom administration by the direct venous route must be undertaken as quickly as possible to stop the envenomation process. Artificial ventilation is necessary in case of dyspnea.

  16. Reversible posterior leukoencephalopathy in a venomous snake (Bothrops asper) bite victim.

    PubMed

    Delgado, Miguel E; Del Brutto, Oscar H

    2012-03-01

    An 18-year-old man developed posterior reversible leukoencephalopaty after being bitten by a venomous snake (Bothrops asper). It is possible that this previously unrecognized neurological complication of snake bite envenoming occurred as the result of endothelial dysfunction induced by the venom of the offending snake. This pathogenetic mechanism has also been implicated as the cause of cerebral infarctions in snake bite victims. Alternatively, the leukoencephalopathy might have been a complication of antivenom therapy.

  17. ISOB: A Database of Indigenous Snake Species of Bangladesh with respective known venom composition

    PubMed Central

    Roly, Zahida Yesmin; Hakim, Md Abdul; Zahan, ASM Shahriar; Hossain, M Monzur; Reza, Md Abu

    2015-01-01

    At present there is no well structured database available for the venomous snakes and venom composition of snakes in the world although venom has immense importance in biomedical research. Searching for a specific venom component from NCBI, PDB or public databases is troublesome, because they contain huge amount of data entries. Therefore, we created a database named “ISOB” which is a web accessible unique secondary database that represents the first online available bioinformatics resource showing venom composition of snakes. This database provides a comprehensive overview of seventy-eight indigenous snake species covering description of snakes supplemented with structural information of the relevant individual available venom proteins. We strongly believe that this database will contribute significantly in the field of bioinformatics, environmental research, proteomics, drug development and rationale drug designing. Availability The database is freely available at http://www.snakebd.com/ PMID:25848172

  18. Hemostatic properties of Venezuelan Bothrops snake venoms with special reference to Bothrops isabelae venom.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Acosta, Alexis; Sánchez, Elda E; Márquez, Adriana; Carvajal, Zoila; Salazar, Ana M; Girón, María E; Estrella, Amalid; Gil, Amparo; Guerrero, Belsy

    2010-11-01

    In Venezuela, Bothrops snakes are responsible for more than 80% of all recorded snakebites. This study focuses on the biological and hemostatic characteristics of Bothrops isabelae venom along with its comparative characteristics with two other closely related Bothrops venoms, Bothrops atrox and Bothrops colombiensis. Electrophoretic profiles of crude B. isabelae venom showed protein bands between 14 and 100 kDa with the majority in the range of 14-31 kDa. The molecular exclusion chromatographic profile of this venom contains five fractions (F1-F5). Amidolytic activity evaluation evidenced strong thrombin-like followed by kallikrein-like activities in crude venom and in fractions F1 and F2. The fibrinogenolytic activity of B. isabelae venom at a ratio of 100:1 (fibrinogen/venom) induced a degradation of A alpha and B beta chains at 15 min and 2 h, respectively. At a ratio of 100:10, a total degradation of A alpha and B beta chains at 5 min and of gamma chains at 24 h was apparent. This current study evidences one of rarely reported for Bothrops venoms, which resembles the physiologic effect of plasmin. B. isabelae venom as well as F2 and F3 fractions, contain fibrinolytic activity on fibrin plate of 36, 23.5 and 9.45 mm(2)/microg, respectively using 25 microg of protein. Crude venom and F1 fraction showed gelatinolytic activity. Comparative analysis amongst Venezuelan bothropoid venoms, evidenced that the LD(50) of B. isabelae (5.9 mg/kg) was similar to B. atrox-Puerto Ayacucho 1 (6.1 mg/kg) and B. colombiensis-Caucagua (5.8 mg/kg). B. isabelae venom showed minor hemorrhagic activity, whereas B. atrox-Parguasa (Bolivar state) was the most hemorrhagic. In this study, a relative high thrombin-like activity was observed in B. colombiensis venoms (502-568 mUA/min/mg), and a relative high factor Xa-like activity was found in B. atrox venoms (126-294 mUA/min/mg). Fibrinolytic activity evaluated with 10 microg protein, showed that B. isabelae venom contained higher

  19. Hemostatic properties of Venezuelan Bothrops snake venoms with special reference to Bothrops isabelae venom.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Acosta, Alexis; Sánchez, Elda E; Márquez, Adriana; Carvajal, Zoila; Salazar, Ana M; Girón, María E; Estrella, Amalid; Gil, Amparo; Guerrero, Belsy

    2010-11-01

    In Venezuela, Bothrops snakes are responsible for more than 80% of all recorded snakebites. This study focuses on the biological and hemostatic characteristics of Bothrops isabelae venom along with its comparative characteristics with two other closely related Bothrops venoms, Bothrops atrox and Bothrops colombiensis. Electrophoretic profiles of crude B. isabelae venom showed protein bands between 14 and 100 kDa with the majority in the range of 14-31 kDa. The molecular exclusion chromatographic profile of this venom contains five fractions (F1-F5). Amidolytic activity evaluation evidenced strong thrombin-like followed by kallikrein-like activities in crude venom and in fractions F1 and F2. The fibrinogenolytic activity of B. isabelae venom at a ratio of 100:1 (fibrinogen/venom) induced a degradation of A alpha and B beta chains at 15 min and 2 h, respectively. At a ratio of 100:10, a total degradation of A alpha and B beta chains at 5 min and of gamma chains at 24 h was apparent. This current study evidences one of rarely reported for Bothrops venoms, which resembles the physiologic effect of plasmin. B. isabelae venom as well as F2 and F3 fractions, contain fibrinolytic activity on fibrin plate of 36, 23.5 and 9.45 mm(2)/microg, respectively using 25 microg of protein. Crude venom and F1 fraction showed gelatinolytic activity. Comparative analysis amongst Venezuelan bothropoid venoms, evidenced that the LD(50) of B. isabelae (5.9 mg/kg) was similar to B. atrox-Puerto Ayacucho 1 (6.1 mg/kg) and B. colombiensis-Caucagua (5.8 mg/kg). B. isabelae venom showed minor hemorrhagic activity, whereas B. atrox-Parguasa (Bolivar state) was the most hemorrhagic. In this study, a relative high thrombin-like activity was observed in B. colombiensis venoms (502-568 mUA/min/mg), and a relative high factor Xa-like activity was found in B. atrox venoms (126-294 mUA/min/mg). Fibrinolytic activity evaluated with 10 microg protein, showed that B. isabelae venom contained higher

  20. Cross reactivity of three antivenoms against North American snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Sánchez, Elda E; Ramírez, María Susana; Galán, Jacob A; López, Gonzalo; Rodríguez-Acosta, Alexis; Pérez, John C

    2003-03-01

    The antivenom in the United States today is in short supply, expensive and may not even be the most effective in neutralizing venoms from snakes in certain geographical locations. The ED(50) is considered to be the best indicator of antivenom efficacy, however, other tests are needed. In this study, three antivenoms (Antivipmyn (Fab(2)H), Crotalidae Polyvalent Immune Fab (Ovine) (FabO) and UCV (FabV) were used to test the effectiveness of neutralization of eight venoms (Agkistrodon piscivorus piscivorus, Bothrops asper, Crotalus adamanteus, C. durissus durissus, C. horridus atricaudatus, C. h. horridus, C. atrox, and C. molossus molossus). Four different assays were used to study the efficacy of the antivenoms: the antihemorrhagic, antigelatinase, antifibrinolytic and antihide powder azure. Fab(2)H antivenom was more effective in neutralizing the enzymatic activities of these eight venoms than FabO and FabV antivenoms. PMID:12565754

  1. [Component I from Agkistrodon acutus venom induces apoptosis of K562/A02 cells by promoting caspase 3 expression].

    PubMed

    Zhou, Bing; Zhang, Gen-Bao; Duan, Ting; Zhou, Jue; Wu, Juan

    2012-04-01

    To investigate the effects of component I from Agkistrodon acutus venom (AAVC-I) on the biological features of chronic myeloid leukemia cells, K562/A02 leukemia cells were cultured in the presence of AAVC-I (6.25 - 100 µg/ml) and the proliferation status was assayed by CCK-8 method. Morphological changes were observed by inversed microscope after Giemsa and Hochest 33258 staining, and cell apoptosis was detected by flow cytometry. Caspase 3 activity was tested by using Chromogenic Activity Assay Kit. The results showed that AAVC-I inhibited the growth of K562/A02 cells in time- and concentration-dependant manners, and the IC(50) at 48 h was 30.988 µg/ml. Giemsa and Hochest 33258 staining showed the typical apoptotic features in K562/A02 cells after induction with AAVC-I for 48 h. Flow cytometric analysis revealed that the percentage of the apoptotic cells reached from 0.88 up to 53.66 as the treated concentration was elevated from 0 to 50 µg/ml. Compared with the control group, the expression of caspase 3 in the tested group was enhanced in a dose-dependent manner (P < 0.05). It is concluded that AAVC-I can effectively inhibit the growth and promote apoptosis of K562/A02 cells. Elevated expression of caspase-3 may be attributed to the apoptosis of K562/A02 cells. PMID:22541080

  2. Combined snake venomics and venom gland transcriptomic analysis of the ocellated carpet viper, Echis ocellatus.

    PubMed

    Wagstaff, Simon C; Sanz, Libia; Juárez, Paula; Harrison, Robert A; Calvete, Juan J

    2009-01-30

    Snakebite in Africa causes thousands of deaths annually and considerable permanent physical disability. The saw-scaled viper, Echis ocellatus, represents the single most medically important snake species in West Africa. To provide a detailed compositional analysis of the venom of E. ocellatus for designing novel toxin-specific immunotherapy and to delineate sequence structure-function relationships of individual toxins, we characterised the venom proteome and the venom gland transcriptome. Whole E. ocellatus venom was fractionated by reverse-phase HPLC, followed by analysis of each chromatographic fraction using a combination of SDS-PAGE, N-terminal sequencing, MALDI-TOF mass fingerprinting, and CID-MS/MS of tryptic peptides. This analysis identified around 35 distinct proteins of molecular masses in the range of 5.5-110 kDa belonging to 8 different toxin families (disintegrin, DC-fragment, phospholipase A(2), cysteine-rich secretory protein, serine proteinase, C-type lectin, l-amino acid oxidase, and Zn(2+)-dependent metalloprotease). Comparison of the toxin composition of E. ocellatus venom determined using a proteomic approach, with the predicted proteome derived from assembly of 1000 EST sequences from a E. ocellatus venom gland cDNA library, shows some differences. Most notably, peptides derived from 26% of the venom proteins could not be ascribed an exact match in the transcriptome. Similarly, 64 (67%) out of the 95 putative toxin clusters reported in the transcriptome did not match to peptides detected in the venom proteome. These data suggest that the final composition of venom is influenced by transcriptional and post-translational mechanisms that may be more complex than previously appreciated. This, in turn, emphasises the value of combining proteomic and transcriptomic approaches to acquire a more complete understanding of the precise composition of snake venom, than would be gleaned from using one analysis alone. From a clinical perspective, the large

  3. Novel Apigenin Based Small Molecule that Targets Snake Venom Metalloproteases

    PubMed Central

    Anusha, Sebastian; Hemshekhar, Mahadevappa; Chandra Nayaka, Siddaiah; Kemparaju, Kempaiah; Basappa; Girish, Kesturu S.; Rangappa, Kanchugarakoppal S.

    2014-01-01

    The classical antivenom therapy has appreciably reduced snakebite mortality rate and thus is the only savior drug available. Unfortunately, it considerably fails to shield the viper bite complications like hemorrhage, local tissue degradation and necrosis responsible for severe morbidity. Moreover, the therapy is also tagged with limitations including anaphylaxis, serum sickness and poor availability. Over the last decade, snake venom metalloproteases (SVMPs) are reported to be the primary component responsible for hemorrhage and tissue degradation at bitten site. Thus, antivenom inability to offset viper venom-induced local toxicity has been a basis for an insistent search for SVMP inhibitors. Here we report the inhibitory effect of compound 5d, an apigenin based molecule against SVMPs both in silico and in vivo. Several apigenin analogues are synthesized using multicomponent Ugi reactions. Among them, compound 5d effectively abrogated Echis carinatus (EC) venom-induced local hemorrhage, tissue necrosis and myotoxicity in a dose dependant fashion. The histopathological study further conferred effective inhibition of basement membrane degradation, and accumulation of inflammatory leucocytes at the site of EC venom inoculation. The compound also protected EC venom-induced fibrin and fibrinogen degradation. The molecular docking of compound 5d and bothropasin demonstrated the direct interaction of hydroxyl group of compound with Glu146 present in hydrophobic pocket of active site and does not chelate Zn2+. Hence, it is concluded that compound 5d could be a potent agent in viper bite management. PMID:25184206

  4. A Novel Direct Factor Xa Inhibitory Peptide with Anti-Platelet Aggregation Activity from Agkistrodon acutus Venom Hydrolysates.

    PubMed

    Chen, Meimei; Ye, Xiaohui; Ming, Xin; Chen, Yahui; Wang, Ying; Su, Xingli; Su, Wen; Kong, Yi

    2015-01-01

    Snake venom is a natural substance that contains numerous bioactive proteins and peptides, nearly all of which have been identified over the last several decades. In this study, we subjected snake venom to enzymatic hydrolysis to identify previously unreported bioactive peptides. The novel peptide ACH-11 with the sequence LTFPRIVFVLG was identified with both FXa inhibition and anti-platelet aggregation activities. ACH-11 inhibited the catalytic function of FXa towards its substrate S-2222 via a mixed model with a Ki value of 9.02 μM and inhibited platelet aggregation induced by ADP and U46619 in a dose-dependent manner. Furthermore, ACH-11 exhibited potent antithrombotic activity in vivo. It reduced paralysis and death in an acute pulmonary thrombosis model by 90% and attenuated thrombosis weight in an arterio-venous shunt thrombosis model by 57.91%, both at a dose of 3 mg/kg. Additionally, a tail cutting bleeding time assay revealed that ACH-11 did not prolong bleeding time in mice at a dose of 3 mg/kg. Together, our results reveal that ACH-11 is a novel antithrombotic peptide exhibiting both FXa inhibition and anti-platelet aggregation activities, with a low bleeding risk. We believe that it could be a candidate or lead compound for new antithrombotic drug development. PMID:26035670

  5. Neutralization of two North American coral snake venoms with United States and Mexican antivenoms.

    PubMed

    Sánchez, Elda E; Lopez-Johnston, Juan C; Rodríguez-Acosta, Alexis; Pérez, John C

    2008-02-01

    Elapid snakes throughout the world are considered very lethal, containing neurotoxic venoms that affect the nervous system. When humans are envenomated it is considered a serious medical emergency, and antivenom is the main form of treatment considered, in spite of the fact that some patients may only survive under intensive therapy treatment such as respiratory support. Coral snakes are part of the family Elapidae and envenomations by these snakes are very low (<2% of total snakebites) in most countries from southeastern United States to Argentina. In the United States, there are only two species of coral snakes of medical importance that belong to the Micrurus genera: Micrurus fulvius fulvius (Eastern coral snake) and Micrurus tener tener (Texas coral snake). In 2006, Wyeth pharmaceutical notified customers that the production of the North American coral snake antivenin (NACSA) in the US was discontinued and adequate supplies were available to meet historical needs through the end of October 2008; and therefore, it is of utmost important to consider other antivenoms as alternatives for the treatment of coral snake envenoming. One logical alternative is the coral snake antivenom, Coralmyn, produced by the Mexican company, Bioclon. In order to compare neutralization between NACSA and Coralmyn antivenoms with the North American coral snake venoms, the venom lethal doses (LD(50)) and antivenom effective doses (ED(50)) were determined in 18-20 g, female, BALB/c mice. Additionally, venom comparisons were determined through a non-reduced SDS-PAGE for M.f.fulvius, M.t.tener and the Mexican coral snake venom, Micrurus nigrocinctus nigrocinctus. Coralmyn antivenom was able to effectively neutralize three LD(50) doses of all venom from both M.t.tener and M.f.fulvius, while Wyeth antivenom only neutralized M.f.fulvius venom and was not effective in neutralizing three LD(50) doses of M.t.tener venom. Coralmyn is effective in the neutralization of both clinically important

  6. Toxicity of South American snake venoms measured by an in vitro cell culture assay.

    PubMed

    Oliveira, J C R; de Oca, H M; Duarte, M M; Diniz, C R; Fortes-Dias, C L

    2002-03-01

    Cytotoxicity of venoms from eight medically important South American Crotalidae snakes (Bothrops and Lachesis genera) was determined, based on a procedure originally described for the screening of cytotoxic agents in general. The assay, the conditions of which were adapted to snake venoms, determines the survival of viable cells in monolayer culture upon exposure to the toxic agent. Snake venom toxicity was expressed as the venom dose that killed 50% of the cells (CT(50)) under the assay conditions. Bothrops neuwieddi mattogrossensis (CT(50)=4.74+/-0.35 microg/ml) and Bothrops leucurus (CT(50)=4.95+/-0.51 microg/ml) were the most cytotoxic whereas Bothrops atrox (CT(50)=34.64+/-2.38 microg/ml) and Bothrops sp. (CT(50)=33.89+/-3.89 microg/ml) were the least cytotoxic venoms, respectively. The relationship between CT(50) and other biological activities of these snake venoms was evaluated. PMID:11711131

  7. Snake venom neutralization by Indian medicinal plants (Vitex negundo and Emblica officinalis) root extracts.

    PubMed

    Alam, M I; Gomes, A

    2003-05-01

    The methanolic root extracts of Vitex negundo Linn. and Emblica officinalis Gaertn. were explored for the first time for antisnake venom activity. The plant (V. negundo and E. officinalis) extracts significantly antagonized the Vipera russellii and Naja kaouthia venom induced lethal activity both in in vitro and in vivo studies. V. russellii venom-induced haemorrhage, coagulant, defibrinogenating and inflammatory activity was significantly neutralized by both plant extracts. No precipitating bands were observed between the plant extract and snake venom. The above observations confirmed that the plant extracts possess potent snake venom neutralizing capacity and need further investigation.

  8. Neurological complications of venomous snake bites: a review.

    PubMed

    Del Brutto, O H; Del Brutto, V J

    2012-06-01

    Snake bite envenoming is a neglected tropical disease affecting millions of people living in the developing world. According to the offending snake species, the clinical picture may be dominated by swelling and soft tissue necrosis in the bitten limb, or by systemic or neurological manifestations. Serious neurological complications, including stroke and muscle paralysis, are related to the toxic effects of the venom, which contains a complex mixture of toxins affecting the coagulation cascade, the neuromuscular transmission, or both. Metalloproteinases, serine proteases, and C-type lentins (common in viper and colubrid venoms) have anticoagulant or procoagulant activity and may be either agonists or antagonists of platelet aggregation; as a result, ischemic or hemorrhagic strokes may occur. In contrast, the venom of elapids is rich in phospholipase A(2) and three-finger proteins, which are potent neurotoxins affecting the neuromuscular transmission at either presynaptic or post-synaptic levels. Presynaptic-acting neurotoxins (called β-neurotoxins) inhibit the release of acetylcholine, while post-synaptic-acting neurotoxins (called α-neurotoxins) cause a reversible blockage of acetylcholine receptors. Proper management of the envenomed patient, including prompt transport to the hospital, correction of the hemostatic disorder, ventilatory support, and administration of antivenom, significantly reduces the risk of neurological complications which, in turn, reduce the mortality and improve the functional outcome of survivors.

  9. A multifaceted analysis of viperid snake venoms by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis: an approach to understanding venom proteomics.

    PubMed

    Serrano, Solange M T; Shannon, John D; Wang, Deyu; Camargo, Antonio C M; Fox, Jay W

    2005-02-01

    The complexity of Viperid venoms has long been appreciated by investigators in the fields of toxinology and medicine. However, it is only recently that the depth of that complexity has become somewhat quantitatively and qualitatively appreciated. With the resurgence of two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2-DE) and the advances in mass spectrometry virtually all venom components can be visualized and identified given sufficient effort and resources. Here we present the use of 2-DE for examining venom complexity as well as demonstrating interesting approaches to selectively delineate subpopulations of venom proteins based on particular characteristics of the proteins such as antibody cross-reactivity or enzymatic activities. 2-DE comparisons between venoms from different species of the same genus (Bothrops) of snake clearly demonstrated both the similarity as well as the apparent diversity among these venoms. Using liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry we were able to identify regions of the two-dimensional gels from each venom in which certain classes of proteins were found. 2-DE was also used to compare venoms from Crotalus atrox and Bothrops jararaca. For these venoms a variety of staining/detection protocols was utilized to compare and contrast the venoms. Specifically, we used various stains to visualize subpopulations of the venom proteomes of these snakes, including Coomassie, Silver, Sypro Ruby and Pro-Q-Emerald. Using specific antibodies in Western blot analyses of 2-DE of the venoms we have examined subpopulations of proteins in these venoms including the serine proteinase proteome, the metalloproteinase proteome, and the phospholipases A2 proteome. A functional assessment of the gelatinolytic activity of these venoms was also performed by zymography. These approaches have given rise to a more thorough understanding of venom complexity and the toxins comprising these venoms and provide insights to investigators who wish to focus on these venom

  10. Venom-Related Transcripts from Bothrops jararaca Tissues Provide Novel Molecular Insights into the Production and Evolution of Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio L.M.; Bastos, Carolina Mancini Val; Ho, Paulo Lee; Luna, Milene Schmidt; Yamanouye, Norma; Casewell, Nicholas R.

    2015-01-01

    Attempts to reconstruct the evolutionary history of snake toxins in the context of their co-option to the venom gland rarely account for nonvenom snake genes that are paralogous to toxins, and which therefore represent important connectors to ancestral genes. In order to reevaluate this process, we conducted a comparative transcriptomic survey on body tissues from a venomous snake. A nonredundant set of 33,000 unigenes (assembled transcripts of reference genes) was independently assembled from six organs of the medically important viperid snake Bothrops jararaca, providing a reference list of 82 full-length toxins from the venom gland and specific products from other tissues, such as pancreatic digestive enzymes. Unigenes were then screened for nontoxin transcripts paralogous to toxins revealing 1) low level coexpression of approximately 20% of toxin genes (e.g., bradykinin-potentiating peptide, C-type lectin, snake venom metalloproteinase, snake venom nerve growth factor) in body tissues, 2) the identity of the closest paralogs to toxin genes in eight classes of toxins, 3) the location and level of paralog expression, indicating that, in general, co-expression occurs in a higher number of tissues and at lower levels than observed for toxin genes, and 4) strong evidence of a toxin gene reverting back to selective expression in a body tissue. In addition, our differential gene expression analyses identify specific cellular processes that make the venom gland a highly specialized secretory tissue. Our results demonstrate that the evolution and production of venom in snakes is a complex process that can only be understood in the context of comparative data from other snake tissues, including the identification of genes paralogous to venom toxins. PMID:25502939

  11. Next-generation snake venomics: protein-locus resolution through venom proteome decomplexation.

    PubMed

    Calvete, Juan J

    2014-06-01

    Venom research has been continuously enhanced by technological advances. High-throughput technologies are changing the classical paradigm of hypothesis-driven research to technology-driven approaches. However, the thesis advocated in this paper is that full proteome coverage at locus-specific resolution requires integrating the best of both worlds into a protocol that includes decomplexation of the venom proteome prior to liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry matching against a species-specific transcriptome. This approach offers the possibility of proof-checking the species-specific contig database using proteomics data. Immunoaffinity chromatography constitutes the basis of an antivenomics workflow designed to quantify the extent of cross-reactivity of antivenoms against homologous and heterologous venom toxins. In the author's view, snake venomics and antivenomics form part of a biology-driven conceptual framework to unveil the genesis and natural history of venoms, and their within- and between-species toxicological and immunological divergences and similarities. Understanding evolutionary trends across venoms represents the Rosetta Stone for generating broad-ranging polyspecific antivenoms. PMID:24678852

  12. Diversification rates and phenotypic evolution in venomous snakes (Elapidae)

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Michael S. Y.; Sanders, Kate L.; King, Benedict; Palci, Alessandro

    2016-01-01

    The relationship between rates of diversification and of body size change (a common proxy for phenotypic evolution) was investigated across Elapidae, the largest radiation of highly venomous snakes. Time-calibrated phylogenetic trees for 175 species of elapids (more than 50% of known taxa) were constructed using seven mitochondrial and nuclear genes. Analyses using these trees revealed no evidence for a link between speciation rates and changes in body size. Two clades (Hydrophis, Micrurus) show anomalously high rates of diversification within Elapidae, yet exhibit rates of body size evolution almost identical to the general elapid ‘background’ rate. Although correlations between speciation rates and rates of body size change exist in certain groups (e.g. ray-finned fishes, passerine birds), the two processes appear to be uncoupled in elapid snakes. There is also no detectable shift in diversification dynamics associated with the colonization of Australasia, which is surprising given that elapids appear to be the first clade of venomous snakes to reach the continent. PMID:26909162

  13. Diversification rates and phenotypic evolution in venomous snakes (Elapidae).

    PubMed

    Lee, Michael S Y; Sanders, Kate L; King, Benedict; Palci, Alessandro

    2016-01-01

    The relationship between rates of diversification and of body size change (a common proxy for phenotypic evolution) was investigated across Elapidae, the largest radiation of highly venomous snakes. Time-calibrated phylogenetic trees for 175 species of elapids (more than 50% of known taxa) were constructed using seven mitochondrial and nuclear genes. Analyses using these trees revealed no evidence for a link between speciation rates and changes in body size. Two clades (Hydrophis, Micrurus) show anomalously high rates of diversification within Elapidae, yet exhibit rates of body size evolution almost identical to the general elapid 'background' rate. Although correlations between speciation rates and rates of body size change exist in certain groups (e.g. ray-finned fishes, passerine birds), the two processes appear to be uncoupled in elapid snakes. There is also no detectable shift in diversification dynamics associated with the colonization of Australasia, which is surprising given that elapids appear to be the first clade of venomous snakes to reach the continent. PMID:26909162

  14. Diversification rates and phenotypic evolution in venomous snakes (Elapidae).

    PubMed

    Lee, Michael S Y; Sanders, Kate L; King, Benedict; Palci, Alessandro

    2016-01-01

    The relationship between rates of diversification and of body size change (a common proxy for phenotypic evolution) was investigated across Elapidae, the largest radiation of highly venomous snakes. Time-calibrated phylogenetic trees for 175 species of elapids (more than 50% of known taxa) were constructed using seven mitochondrial and nuclear genes. Analyses using these trees revealed no evidence for a link between speciation rates and changes in body size. Two clades (Hydrophis, Micrurus) show anomalously high rates of diversification within Elapidae, yet exhibit rates of body size evolution almost identical to the general elapid 'background' rate. Although correlations between speciation rates and rates of body size change exist in certain groups (e.g. ray-finned fishes, passerine birds), the two processes appear to be uncoupled in elapid snakes. There is also no detectable shift in diversification dynamics associated with the colonization of Australasia, which is surprising given that elapids appear to be the first clade of venomous snakes to reach the continent.

  15. The good, the bad and the ugly: Australian snake taxonomists and a history of the taxonomy of Australia's venomous snakes.

    PubMed

    Williams, David; Wüster, Wolfgang; Fry, Bryan Grieg

    2006-12-01

    The Australian snake fauna is unique in harbouring more venomous species than non-venomous ones. Although taxonomic research on the elapid snakes of Australia goes back to the late 18th century, in stark contrast to other developed regions of the world (e.g. the continental USA), Australian snake taxonomy is very much in its infancy. Despite this, or perhaps because of this, the taxonomy of Australian snakes has been extraordinarily controversial, and many of the taxonomists involved correspondingly colourful. In this review, we explore the sometimes-tortured history of the taxonomic exploration of the venomous snake fauna of Australia, looking at some of the more colourful and notable contributors and highlighting systematic pitfalls that persist even today.

  16. Restriction and Recruitment—Gene Duplication and the Origin and Evolution of Snake Venom Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Hargreaves, Adam D.; Swain, Martin T.; Hegarty, Matthew J.; Logan, Darren W.; Mulley, John F.

    2014-01-01

    Snake venom has been hypothesized to have originated and diversified through a process that involves duplication of genes encoding body proteins with subsequent recruitment of the copy to the venom gland, where natural selection acts to develop or increase toxicity. However, gene duplication is known to be a rare event in vertebrate genomes, and the recruitment of duplicated genes to a novel expression domain (neofunctionalization) is an even rarer process that requires the evolution of novel combinations of transcription factor binding sites in upstream regulatory regions. Therefore, although this hypothesis concerning the evolution of snake venom is very unlikely and should be regarded with caution, it is nonetheless often assumed to be established fact, hindering research into the true origins of snake venom toxins. To critically evaluate this hypothesis, we have generated transcriptomic data for body tissues and salivary and venom glands from five species of venomous and nonvenomous reptiles. Our comparative transcriptomic analysis of these data reveals that snake venom does not evolve through the hypothesized process of duplication and recruitment of genes encoding body proteins. Indeed, our results show that many proposed venom toxins are in fact expressed in a wide variety of body tissues, including the salivary gland of nonvenomous reptiles and that these genes have therefore been restricted to the venom gland following duplication, not recruited. Thus, snake venom evolves through the duplication and subfunctionalization of genes encoding existing salivary proteins. These results highlight the danger of the elegant and intuitive “just-so story” in evolutionary biology. PMID:25079342

  17. Ca(2+) -induced binding of anticoagulation factor II from the venom of Agkistrodon acutus with factor IX.

    PubMed

    Shen, Deng-Ke; Xu, Xiao-Long; Zhang, Yan; Song, Jia-Jia; Yan, Xin-Cheng; Guo, Ming-Chun

    2012-10-01

    Anticoagulation factor II (ACF II), a coagulation factor X- binding protein from the venom of Agkistrodon acutus has both anticoagulant and hypotensive activities. Previous studies show that ACF II binds specifically with activated factor X (FXa) in a Ca(2+) -dependent manner and inhibits intrinsic coagulation pathway. In this study, the inhibition of extrinsic coagulation pathway by ACF II was measured in vivo by prothrombin time assay and the binding of ACF II to factor IX (FIX) was investigated by native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and surface plasmon resonance (SPR). The results indicate that ACF II also inhibits extrinsic coagulation pathway, but does not inhibit thrombin activity. ACF II also binds with FIX with high binding affinity in a Ca(2+) -dependent manner and their maximal binding occurs at about 0.1 mM Ca(2+) . ACF II has similar binding affinity to FIX and FX as determined by SPR. Ca(2+) has a slight effect on the secondary structure of FIX as determined by circular dichroism spectroscopy. Ca(2+) ions are required to maintain in vivo function of FIX Gla domain for its recognition of ACF II. However, Ca(2+) at high concentrations (>0.1 mM) inhibits the binding of ACF II to FIX. Ca(2+) functions as a switch for the binding between ACF II and FIX. ACF II extends activated partial thromboplastin time more strongly than prothrombin time, suggesting that the binding of ACF II with FIX may play a dominant role in the anticoagulation of ACF II in vivo. PMID:22806501

  18. Differing stabilities of snake venom cardiotoxins in acidic aqueous acetonitrile.

    PubMed

    Osthoff, G

    1990-01-01

    1. Although snake venom cardiotoxins constitute a homologous family of proteins, subclasses with different structural and biological properties exist. 2. By using circular dichroism spectroscopy of twelve cardiotoxins belonging to two structural classes and one non-classified group, this investigation indicated that cardiotoxins differ in their stabilities towards denaturation in acidic aqueous acetonitrile, as used in some reversed-phase high performance liquid chromatography separations. 3. It was also shown that cardiotoxins of the structural class II are in general less stable towards this denaturation than class I and non-classified cardiotoxins.

  19. Crystal structure of a snake venom cardiotoxin

    SciTech Connect

    Rees, B.; Samama, J.P.; Thierry, J.C.; Gilibert, M.; Fischer, J.; Schweitz, H.; Lazdunski, M.; Moras, D.

    1987-05-01

    Cardiotoxin V/sup II/4 from Naja mossambica crystallizes in space group P6/sub 1/ (a = b = 73.9 A; c = 59.0 A) with two molecules of toxin (molecular mass = 6715 Da) in the asymmetric unit. The structure was solved by using a combination of multiple isomorphous replacement and density modification methods. Model building and least-squares refinement led to an agreement factor of 27% for a data set to 3-A resolution prior to any inclusion of solvent molecules. The topology of the molecule is similar to that found in short and long snake neurotoxins, which block the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. Major differences occur in the conformation of the central loop, resulting in a change in the concavity of the molecule. Hydrophobic residues are clustered in two distinct areas. The existence of stable dimeric entities in the crystalline state, with the formation of a six-stranded antiparallel ..beta.. sheet, may be functionally relevant.

  20. The king cobra genome reveals dynamic gene evolution and adaptation in the snake venom system.

    PubMed

    Vonk, Freek J; Casewell, Nicholas R; Henkel, Christiaan V; Heimberg, Alysha M; Jansen, Hans J; McCleary, Ryan J R; Kerkkamp, Harald M E; Vos, Rutger A; Guerreiro, Isabel; Calvete, Juan J; Wüster, Wolfgang; Woods, Anthony E; Logan, Jessica M; Harrison, Robert A; Castoe, Todd A; de Koning, A P Jason; Pollock, David D; Yandell, Mark; Calderon, Diego; Renjifo, Camila; Currier, Rachel B; Salgado, David; Pla, Davinia; Sanz, Libia; Hyder, Asad S; Ribeiro, José M C; Arntzen, Jan W; van den Thillart, Guido E E J M; Boetzer, Marten; Pirovano, Walter; Dirks, Ron P; Spaink, Herman P; Duboule, Denis; McGlinn, Edwina; Kini, R Manjunatha; Richardson, Michael K

    2013-12-17

    Snakes are limbless predators, and many species use venom to help overpower relatively large, agile prey. Snake venoms are complex protein mixtures encoded by several multilocus gene families that function synergistically to cause incapacitation. To examine venom evolution, we sequenced and interrogated the genome of a venomous snake, the king cobra (Ophiophagus hannah), and compared it, together with our unique transcriptome, microRNA, and proteome datasets from this species, with data from other vertebrates. In contrast to the platypus, the only other venomous vertebrate with a sequenced genome, we find that snake toxin genes evolve through several distinct co-option mechanisms and exhibit surprisingly variable levels of gene duplication and directional selection that correlate with their functional importance in prey capture. The enigmatic accessory venom gland shows a very different pattern of toxin gene expression from the main venom gland and seems to have recruited toxin-like lectin genes repeatedly for new nontoxic functions. In addition, tissue-specific microRNA analyses suggested the co-option of core genetic regulatory components of the venom secretory system from a pancreatic origin. Although the king cobra is limbless, we recovered coding sequences for all Hox genes involved in amniote limb development, with the exception of Hoxd12. Our results provide a unique view of the origin and evolution of snake venom and reveal multiple genome-level adaptive responses to natural selection in this complex biological weapon system. More generally, they provide insight into mechanisms of protein evolution under strong selection.

  1. The king cobra genome reveals dynamic gene evolution and adaptation in the snake venom system.

    PubMed

    Vonk, Freek J; Casewell, Nicholas R; Henkel, Christiaan V; Heimberg, Alysha M; Jansen, Hans J; McCleary, Ryan J R; Kerkkamp, Harald M E; Vos, Rutger A; Guerreiro, Isabel; Calvete, Juan J; Wüster, Wolfgang; Woods, Anthony E; Logan, Jessica M; Harrison, Robert A; Castoe, Todd A; de Koning, A P Jason; Pollock, David D; Yandell, Mark; Calderon, Diego; Renjifo, Camila; Currier, Rachel B; Salgado, David; Pla, Davinia; Sanz, Libia; Hyder, Asad S; Ribeiro, José M C; Arntzen, Jan W; van den Thillart, Guido E E J M; Boetzer, Marten; Pirovano, Walter; Dirks, Ron P; Spaink, Herman P; Duboule, Denis; McGlinn, Edwina; Kini, R Manjunatha; Richardson, Michael K

    2013-12-17

    Snakes are limbless predators, and many species use venom to help overpower relatively large, agile prey. Snake venoms are complex protein mixtures encoded by several multilocus gene families that function synergistically to cause incapacitation. To examine venom evolution, we sequenced and interrogated the genome of a venomous snake, the king cobra (Ophiophagus hannah), and compared it, together with our unique transcriptome, microRNA, and proteome datasets from this species, with data from other vertebrates. In contrast to the platypus, the only other venomous vertebrate with a sequenced genome, we find that snake toxin genes evolve through several distinct co-option mechanisms and exhibit surprisingly variable levels of gene duplication and directional selection that correlate with their functional importance in prey capture. The enigmatic accessory venom gland shows a very different pattern of toxin gene expression from the main venom gland and seems to have recruited toxin-like lectin genes repeatedly for new nontoxic functions. In addition, tissue-specific microRNA analyses suggested the co-option of core genetic regulatory components of the venom secretory system from a pancreatic origin. Although the king cobra is limbless, we recovered coding sequences for all Hox genes involved in amniote limb development, with the exception of Hoxd12. Our results provide a unique view of the origin and evolution of snake venom and reveal multiple genome-level adaptive responses to natural selection in this complex biological weapon system. More generally, they provide insight into mechanisms of protein evolution under strong selection. PMID:24297900

  2. The king cobra genome reveals dynamic gene evolution and adaptation in the snake venom system

    PubMed Central

    Vonk, Freek J.; Casewell, Nicholas R.; Henkel, Christiaan V.; Heimberg, Alysha M.; Jansen, Hans J.; McCleary, Ryan J. R.; Kerkkamp, Harald M. E.; Vos, Rutger A.; Guerreiro, Isabel; Calvete, Juan J.; Wüster, Wolfgang; Woods, Anthony E.; Logan, Jessica M.; Harrison, Robert A.; Castoe, Todd A.; de Koning, A. P. Jason; Pollock, David D.; Yandell, Mark; Calderon, Diego; Renjifo, Camila; Currier, Rachel B.; Salgado, David; Pla, Davinia; Sanz, Libia; Hyder, Asad S.; Ribeiro, José M. C.; Arntzen, Jan W.; van den Thillart, Guido E. E. J. M.; Boetzer, Marten; Pirovano, Walter; Dirks, Ron P.; Spaink, Herman P.; Duboule, Denis; McGlinn, Edwina; Kini, R. Manjunatha; Richardson, Michael K.

    2013-01-01

    Snakes are limbless predators, and many species use venom to help overpower relatively large, agile prey. Snake venoms are complex protein mixtures encoded by several multilocus gene families that function synergistically to cause incapacitation. To examine venom evolution, we sequenced and interrogated the genome of a venomous snake, the king cobra (Ophiophagus hannah), and compared it, together with our unique transcriptome, microRNA, and proteome datasets from this species, with data from other vertebrates. In contrast to the platypus, the only other venomous vertebrate with a sequenced genome, we find that snake toxin genes evolve through several distinct co-option mechanisms and exhibit surprisingly variable levels of gene duplication and directional selection that correlate with their functional importance in prey capture. The enigmatic accessory venom gland shows a very different pattern of toxin gene expression from the main venom gland and seems to have recruited toxin-like lectin genes repeatedly for new nontoxic functions. In addition, tissue-specific microRNA analyses suggested the co-option of core genetic regulatory components of the venom secretory system from a pancreatic origin. Although the king cobra is limbless, we recovered coding sequences for all Hox genes involved in amniote limb development, with the exception of Hoxd12. Our results provide a unique view of the origin and evolution of snake venom and reveal multiple genome-level adaptive responses to natural selection in this complex biological weapon system. More generally, they provide insight into mechanisms of protein evolution under strong selection. PMID:24297900

  3. Partial in vitro analysis of toxic and antigenic activities of eleven Peruvian pitviper snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Guerra-Duarte, C; Lopes-Peixoto, J; Fonseca-de-Souza, B R; Stransky, S; Oliveira, D; Schneider, F S; Lopes-de-Souza, L; Bonilla, C; Silva, W; Tintaya, B; Yarleque, A; Chávez-Olórtegui, C

    2015-12-15

    This work used eleven Peruvian snake venoms (Bothrops andianus, Bothrops atrox, Bothrops barnetti, Bothrops castelnaudi, Bothriopsis chloromelas, Bothrocophias microphthalmus, Bothrops neuwiedi, Bothriopsis oligolepis, Bothriopsis peruviana, Bothrops pictus and Bothriopsis taeniata) to perform in vitro experimentation and determine its main characteristics. Hyaluronidase (HYAL), phospholipase A2 (PLA2), snake venom metalloproteinase (SVMP), snake venom serine protease (SVSP) and L-amino acid oxidase (LAAO) activities; toxicity by cell viability assays using MGSO3, VERO and HeLa cell lineages; and crossed immunoreactivity with Peruvian (PAV) and Brazilian (BAV) antibothropic polyvalent antivenoms, through ELISA and Western Blotting assays, were determined. Results show that the activities tested in this study were not similar amongst the venoms and each species present their own peculiarities, highlighting the diversity within Bothrops complex. All venoms were capable of reducing cell viability of all tested lineages. It was also demonstrated the crossed recognition of all tested venoms by both antivenoms. PMID:26365916

  4. Hemostatic interference of Indian king cobra (Ophiophagus hannah) Venom. Comparison with three other snake venoms of the subcontinent.

    PubMed

    Gowtham, Yashonandana J; Kumar, M S; Girish, K S; Kemparaju, K

    2012-06-01

    Unlike Naja naja, Bungarus caeruleus, Echis carinatus, and Daboia/Vipera russellii venoms, Ophiophagus hannah venom is medically ignored in the Indian subcontinent. Being the biggest poisonous snake, O. hannah has been presumed to inject several lethal doses of venom in a single bite. Lack of therapeutic antivenom to O. hannah bite in India makes any attempt to save the victim a difficult exercise. This study was initiated to compare O. hannah venom with the above said venoms for possible interference in hemostasis. Ophiophagus hannah venom was found to actively interfere in hemostatic stages such as fibrin clot formation, platelet activation/aggregation, and fibrin clot dissolution. It decreased partial thromboplastin time (aPTT), prothrombin time (PT), and thrombin clotting time (TCT). These activities are similar to that shown by E. carinatus and D. russellii venoms, and thus O. hannah venom was found to exert procoagulant activity through the common pathway of blood coagulation, while N. naja venom increased aPTT and TCT but not PT, and hence it was found to exert anticoagulant activity through the intrinsic pathway. Venoms of O. hannah, E. carinatus, and D. russellii lack plasminogen activation property as they do not hydrolyze azocasein, while they all show plasmin-like activity by degrading the fibrin clot. Although N. naja venom did not degrade azocasein, unlike other venoms, it showed feeble plasmin-like activity on fibrin clot. Venom of E. carinatus induced clotting of human platelet rich plasma (PRP), while the other three venoms interfered in agonist-induced platelet aggregation in PRP. Venom of O. hannah least inhibited the ADP induced platelet aggregation as compared to D. russellii and N. naja venoms. All these three venoms showed complete inhibition of epinephrine-induced aggregation at varied doses. However, O. hannah venom was unique in inhibiting thrombin induced aggregation. PMID:22817464

  5. Hemostatic interference of Indian king cobra (Ophiophagus hannah) Venom. Comparison with three other snake venoms of the subcontinent.

    PubMed

    Gowtham, Yashonandana J; Kumar, M S; Girish, K S; Kemparaju, K

    2012-06-01

    Unlike Naja naja, Bungarus caeruleus, Echis carinatus, and Daboia/Vipera russellii venoms, Ophiophagus hannah venom is medically ignored in the Indian subcontinent. Being the biggest poisonous snake, O. hannah has been presumed to inject several lethal doses of venom in a single bite. Lack of therapeutic antivenom to O. hannah bite in India makes any attempt to save the victim a difficult exercise. This study was initiated to compare O. hannah venom with the above said venoms for possible interference in hemostasis. Ophiophagus hannah venom was found to actively interfere in hemostatic stages such as fibrin clot formation, platelet activation/aggregation, and fibrin clot dissolution. It decreased partial thromboplastin time (aPTT), prothrombin time (PT), and thrombin clotting time (TCT). These activities are similar to that shown by E. carinatus and D. russellii venoms, and thus O. hannah venom was found to exert procoagulant activity through the common pathway of blood coagulation, while N. naja venom increased aPTT and TCT but not PT, and hence it was found to exert anticoagulant activity through the intrinsic pathway. Venoms of O. hannah, E. carinatus, and D. russellii lack plasminogen activation property as they do not hydrolyze azocasein, while they all show plasmin-like activity by degrading the fibrin clot. Although N. naja venom did not degrade azocasein, unlike other venoms, it showed feeble plasmin-like activity on fibrin clot. Venom of E. carinatus induced clotting of human platelet rich plasma (PRP), while the other three venoms interfered in agonist-induced platelet aggregation in PRP. Venom of O. hannah least inhibited the ADP induced platelet aggregation as compared to D. russellii and N. naja venoms. All these three venoms showed complete inhibition of epinephrine-induced aggregation at varied doses. However, O. hannah venom was unique in inhibiting thrombin induced aggregation.

  6. Coevolution of diet and prey-specific venom activity supports the role of selection in snake venom evolution

    PubMed Central

    Barlow, Axel; Pook, Catharine E.; Harrison, Robert A.; Wüster, Wolfgang

    2009-01-01

    The processes that drive the evolution of snake venom variability, particularly the role of diet, have been a topic of intense recent research interest. Here, we test whether extensive variation in venom composition in the medically important viper genus Echis is associated with shifts in diet. Examination of stomach and hindgut contents revealed extreme variation between the major clades of Echis in the proportion of arthropod prey consumed. The toxicity (median lethal dose, LD50) of representative Echis venoms to a natural scorpion prey species was found to be strongly associated with the degree of arthropod feeding. Mapping the results onto a novel Echis phylogeny generated from nuclear and mitochondrial sequence data revealed two independent instances of coevolution of venom toxicity and diet. Unlike venom LD50, the speed with which venoms incapacitated and killed scorpions was not associated with the degree of arthropod feeding. The prey-specific venom toxicity of arthropod-feeding Echis may thus be adaptive primarily by reducing venom expenditure. Overall, our results provide strong evidence that variation in snake venom composition results from adaptive evolution driven by natural selection for different diets, and underscores the need for a multi-faceted, integrative approach to the study of the causes of venom evolution. PMID:19364745

  7. Biological activities of Peristrophe bivalvis extracts: promising potential for anti-snake venoms against Naja kaouthia and Trimeresurus albolabris venoms.

    PubMed

    Phaopongthai, Jatuporn; Noiphrom, Jureeporn; Phaopongthai, Supat; Pakmanee, Narumol; Sichaem, Jirapast

    2016-01-01

    This study evaluates the in vitro anti-snake venom potential of Peristrophe bivalvis (PB) extracts against Naja kaouthia (NK) and Trimeresurus albolabris (TA) venoms, including inhibition of cytotoxic effects and enzymatic activities, and the binding-precipitation of extracts and venom proteins analysis. In addition, the antioxidant, cytotoxic and in vivo acute oral toxic activities of PB extracts are also reported. The in vitro cytotoxic and enzymatic analysis reveals that the ethanol extracts of stems and leaves of PB showed good anti-snake venom activity against NK and TA venoms. In addition, the antioxidant result indicated that only the ethanol extract of leaves exhibited weak DPPH radical-scavenging activity. The ethanol whole-plant extract of PB also showed no cytotoxicity against four cell lines. Moreover, the in vivo acute oral toxicity result of the ethanol whole-plant extract showed that all treated rats did not exhibit abnormal toxic signs or deaths.

  8. Biological activities of Peristrophe bivalvis extracts: promising potential for anti-snake venoms against Naja kaouthia and Trimeresurus albolabris venoms.

    PubMed

    Phaopongthai, Jatuporn; Noiphrom, Jureeporn; Phaopongthai, Supat; Pakmanee, Narumol; Sichaem, Jirapast

    2016-01-01

    This study evaluates the in vitro anti-snake venom potential of Peristrophe bivalvis (PB) extracts against Naja kaouthia (NK) and Trimeresurus albolabris (TA) venoms, including inhibition of cytotoxic effects and enzymatic activities, and the binding-precipitation of extracts and venom proteins analysis. In addition, the antioxidant, cytotoxic and in vivo acute oral toxic activities of PB extracts are also reported. The in vitro cytotoxic and enzymatic analysis reveals that the ethanol extracts of stems and leaves of PB showed good anti-snake venom activity against NK and TA venoms. In addition, the antioxidant result indicated that only the ethanol extract of leaves exhibited weak DPPH radical-scavenging activity. The ethanol whole-plant extract of PB also showed no cytotoxicity against four cell lines. Moreover, the in vivo acute oral toxicity result of the ethanol whole-plant extract showed that all treated rats did not exhibit abnormal toxic signs or deaths. PMID:25942501

  9. Feeding behavior and venom toxicity of coral snake Micrurus nigrocinctus (Serpentes: Elapidae) on its natural prey in captivity.

    PubMed

    Urdaneta, Aldo H; Bolaños, Federico; Gutiérrez, José María

    2004-08-01

    The feeding behavior and venom toxicity of the coral snake Micrurus nigrocinctus (Serpentes: Elapidae) on its natural prey in captivity were investigated. Coral snakes searched for their prey (the colubrid snake Geophis godmani) in the cages. Once their preys were located, coral snakes stroke them with a rapid forward movement, biting predominantly in the anterior region of the body. In order to assess the role of venom in prey restraint and ingestion, a group of coral snakes was 'milked' in order to drastically reduce the venom content in their glands. Significant differences were observed between snakes with venom, i.e., 'nonmilked' snakes, and 'milked' snakes regarding their behavior after the bite. The former remained hold to the prey until paralysis was achieved, whereas the latter, in the absence of paralysis, moved their head towards the head of the prey and bit the skull to achieve prey immobilization by mechanical means. There were no significant differences in the time of ingestion between these two groups of coral snakes. Susceptibility to the lethal effect of coral snake venom greatly differed in four colubrid species; G. godmani showed the highest susceptibility, followed by Geophis brachycephalus, whereas Ninia psephota and Ninia maculata were highly resistant to this venom. In addition, the blood serum of N. maculata, but not that of G. brachycephalus, prolonged the time of death of mice injected with 2 LD(50)s of M. nigrocinctus venom, when venom and blood serum were incubated before testing. Subcutaneous injection of coral snake venom in G. godmani induced neurotoxicity and myotoxicity, without causing hemorrhage and without affecting heart and lungs. It is concluded that (a) M. nigrocinctus venom plays a role in prey immobilization, (b) venom induces neurotoxic and myotoxic effects in colubrid snakes which comprise part of their natural prey, and (c) some colubrid snakes of the genus Ninia present a conspicuous resistance to the toxic action of M

  10. Processing of Snake Venom Metalloproteinases: Generation of Toxin Diversity and Enzyme Inactivation

    PubMed Central

    Moura-da-Silva, Ana M.; Almeida, Michelle T.; Portes-Junior, José A.; Nicolau, Carolina A.; Gomes-Neto, Francisco; Valente, Richard H.

    2016-01-01

    Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) are abundant in the venoms of vipers and rattlesnakes, playing important roles for the snake adaptation to different environments, and are related to most of the pathological effects of these venoms in human victims. The effectiveness of SVMPs is greatly due to their functional diversity, targeting important physiological proteins or receptors in different tissues and in the coagulation system. Functional diversity is often related to the genetic diversification of the snake venom. In this review, we discuss some published evidence that posit that processing and post-translational modifications are great contributors for the generation of functional diversity and for maintaining latency or inactivation of enzymes belonging to this relevant family of venom toxins. PMID:27294958

  11. [Toxicity of venoms from snakes of medical importance in México].

    PubMed

    de Roodt, Adolfo R; Estévez-Ramírez, Judith; Paniagua-Solís, Jorge F; Litwin, Silvana; Carvajal-Saucedo, Alejandro; Dolab, Jorge A; Robles-Ortiz, Luis E; Alagón, Alejandro

    2005-01-01

    The characterization of the toxic activities of snake venoms is necessary to understand the physiopathology of the envenomation and to test the potency of the antivenoms used to treat this pathology. Because of the lack of data on the toxic activities of venoms from Mexican snakes of medical importance, we studied the venoms from Bothrops asper, Athropoides nummifrr, Agkistrodon billineatus, Crotalus durissus durissus, Crotalus basiliscus, Crotalus scutulatus, Crotalus atrox and Micrurus nigrocinctus. The studies performed were: SDS-PAOE, determination of lethal potency, hemorrhagic, necrotizing, coagulation on plasma and fibrinogen, phospholipasic and fibri(noge)nolytic activities. In addition we studied the neutralizing capacity of the toxic activities of an antivenom currently used for the treatment of snakebites in Mexico. The venom from viperids showed important hemorrhagic, necrotizing, coagulative on plasma, prothrombinic, fibrinogenolytic and phospholipase activities. The venoms with the highest lethal potency were those of Micrurus nigrocinctus and Crotalus scutulatus; however, the viperine venom that globally displayed the most potent toxic activities was from Bothrops asper. All the venoms showed toxic activities of similar range to those described for other American venomous snakes. The activity on plasma or fibrinogen varied widely among the different venoms but all displayed capacity to act on the coagulation system. The antivenom tested not only neutralized the lethality B. asper venom but also its other toxic activities. PMID:15754746

  12. Efficacy of antivenom against the procoagulant effect of Australian brown snake (Pseudonaja sp.) venom: in vivo and in vitro studies.

    PubMed

    Isbister, Geoffrey K; O'Leary, Margaret A; Schneider, Jennifer J; Brown, Simon G A; Currie, Bart J

    2007-01-01

    Snake venom induced consumption coagulopathy (VICC) is a common complication of snake bite due to prothrombin activators or thrombin-like enzymes in the venom. This study aimed to determine the efficacy and dose of antivenom for treating VICC in patients envenomed by brown snakes (Pseudonaja spp.), including in vitro coagulation studies. In serial blood samples from patients with brown snake envenoming, venom and antivenom concentrations were measured using enzyme immunoassays. In vitro mixtures of brown snake venom and antivenom were used to investigate antivenom binding, neutralisation of prothrombin activity, prevention of venom-mediated clotting and effect on thrombin generation parameters using a thrombinoscope. In 27 envenomed patients the median venom concentration was 20 ng/mL (Interquartile range[IQR]:12-44 ng/mL) prior to antivenom and was not detected after antivenom administration, including 9 patients given one vial. In vitro, 200 microg/mL of antivenom bound all free venom at venom concentrations seen in patients. In vitro prothrombinase activity of the venom (using a chromogenic substrate) was not neutralised by antivenom. However, for venom concentrations seen in humans, 100 microg/mL of antivenom prevented venom clotting activity in human plasma and 479 microg/mL neutralised procoagulant venom activity measured by triggering thrombin generation. One vial of antivenom appears to be sufficient to bind and neutralise all venom in patients with severe brown snake envenoming.

  13. Inhibitory effect of tea polyphenols on local tissue damage induced by snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Pithayanukul, P; Leanpolchareanchai, J; Bavovada, R

    2010-01-01

    The methanolic extract of fresh tea leaves of Camellia sinensis L. (Theaceae) (CS) was assayed for its potential to inhibit enzymes with hydrolytic activity in Naja naja kaouthia Lesson (Elapidae) and Calloselasma rhodostoma Kuhl (Viperidae) venoms. These snake venom enzymes are responsible for the early effects of envenomation, such as local tissue damage and inflammation. The CS extract inhibited phospholipase A(2), proteases, hyaluronidase and L-amino acid oxidase in both venoms by in vitro neutralization and inhibited the hemorrhagic and the dermonecrotic activities of the venoms in vivo. It is suggested that the inhibitory potential of the CS extract against local tissue damage induced by snake venoms may be attributed to complexation and chelation between the venom proteins and the phenolic contents of the extract.

  14. Local effects induced by venoms from five species of genus Micrurus sp. (coral snakes).

    PubMed

    Barros, A C; Fernandes, D P; Ferreira, L C; Dos Santos, M C

    1994-04-01

    Venoms from five species of Micrurus (coral snakes) from Brazil (Amazonas State) were tested for the following effects: edematogenic, myotoxic, coagulant, hemorrhagic and phospholipase A2 (PLA2) detection. None of the venoms tested presented coagulant activity. The presence of PLA2 was detected by ELISA in the venoms of M. spixii, M. averyi and M. lemniscatus. The myotoxicity was estimated by the increase in the serum creatine kinase level and by histological analysis. All venoms, except that from M. surinamensis, induced intense edematogenic and myotoxic effects. The venom of M. averyi showed hemorrhagic activity which was confirmed by histopathological analysis. This is the first evidence of such an effect by coral snake venom.

  15. Crotalid snake venom subproteomes unraveled by the antiophidic protein DM43.

    PubMed

    Rocha, Surza L G; Neves-Ferreira, Ana G C; Trugilho, Monique R O; Chapeaurouge, Alex; León, Ileana R; Valente, Richard H; Domont, Gilberto B; Perales, Jonas

    2009-05-01

    Snake venoms are mixtures of proteins and peptides with different biological activities, many of which are very toxic. Several animals, including the opossum Didelphis aurita, are resistant to snake venoms due to the presence of neutralizing factors in their blood. An antihemorrhagic protein named DM43 was isolated from opossum serum. It inhibits snake venom metalloproteinases through noncovalent complex formation with these enzymes. In this study, we have used DM43 and proteomic techniques to explore snake venom subproteomes. Four crotalid venoms were chromatographed through an affinity column containing immobilized DM43. Bound fractions were analyzed by one- and two-dimensional gel electrophoresis, followed by identification by MALDI-TOF/TOF mass spectrometry. With this approach, we could easily visualize and compare the metalloproteinase compositions of Bothrops atrox, Bothrops jararaca, Bothrops insularis, and Crotalus atrox snake venoms. The important contribution of proteolytic processing to the complexity of this particular subproteome was demonstrated. Fractions not bound to DM43 column were similarly analyzed and were composed mainly of serine proteinases, C-type lectins, C-type lectin-like proteins, l-amino acid oxidases, nerve growth factor, cysteine-rich secretory protein, a few metalloproteinases (and their fragments), and some unidentified spots. Although very few toxin families were represented in the crotalid venoms analyzed, the number of protein spots detected was in the hundreds, indicating an important protein variability in these natural secretions. DM43 affinity chromatography and associated proteomic techniques proved to be useful tools to separate and identify proteins from snake venoms, contributing to a better comprehension of venom heterogeneity. PMID:19267469

  16. Comparative study of anticoagulant and procoagulant properties of 28 snake venoms from families Elapidae, Viperidae, and purified Russell's viper venom-factor X activator (RVV-X).

    PubMed

    Suntravat, Montamas; Nuchprayoon, Issarang; Pérez, John C

    2010-09-15

    Snake venoms consist of numerous molecules with diverse biological functions used for capturing prey. Each component of venom has a specific target, and alters the biological function of its target. Once these molecules are identified, characterized, and cloned; they could have medical applications. The activated clotting time (ACT) and clot rate were used for screening procoagulant and anticoagulant properties of 28 snake venoms. Crude venoms from Daboia russellii siamensis, Bothrops asper, Bothrops moojeni, and one Crotalus oreganus helleri from Wrightwood, CA, had procoagulant activity. These venoms induced a significant shortening of the ACT and showed a significant increase in the clot rate when compared to the negative control. Factor X activator activity was also measured in 28 venoms, and D. r. siamensis venom was 5-6 times higher than those of B. asper, B. moojeni, and C. o. helleri from Wrightwood County. Russell's viper venom-factor X activator (RVV-X) was purified from D. r. siamensis venom, and then procoagulant activity was evaluated by the ACT and clot rate. Other venoms, Crotalus atrox and two Naja pallida, had anticoagulant activity. A significant increase in the ACT and a significant decrease in the clot rate were observed after the addition of these venoms; therefore, the venoms were considered to have anticoagulant activity. Venoms from the same species did not always have the same ACT and clot rate profiles, but the profiles were an excellent way to identify procoagulant and anticoagulant activities in snake venoms. PMID:20677373

  17. Hypericum brasiliense plant extract neutralizes some biological effects of Bothrops jararaca snake venom.

    PubMed

    Assafim, Mariane; de Coriolano, Eduardo Coriolano; Benedito, Sérgio Eufrázio; Fernandes, Caio Pinho; Lobo, Jonathas Felipe Revoredo; Sanchez, Eladio Florez; Rocha, Leandro Machado; Fuly, André Lopes

    2011-01-01

    Alternative treatments for snake bite are currently being extensively studied, and plant metabolites are considered good candidates for such purpose. Here, the ability of a crude ethanolic extract of Hypericum brasiliense plant in neutralizing Bothrops jararaca snake venom was investigated by in vitro (coagulation, hemolysis or proteolysis) and in vivo (hemorrhage, lethality and edema) biological assays. We describe for the first time the ability of H. brasiliense extracts to inhibit some pharmacological effects of a Brazilian snake venom. Inhibitory assays were performed by incubating B. jararaca venom with H. brasiliense extracts for 30min at room temperature before the assays were performed. The results showed that H. brasiliense extracts impaired lethality, edema, hemorrhage, hemolysis, proteolysis as well as fibrinogen or plasma clotting induced by B. jararaca venom. This indicates that H. brasiliense extracts can provide promising agents to treat B. jararaca envenomation.

  18. Decreased snake venom metalloproteinase effects via inhibition of enzyme and modification of fibrinogen.

    PubMed

    Nielsen, Vance G; Cerruti, Marc A; Valencia, Olivia M; Amos, Quinlan

    2016-10-01

    Since the introduction of antivenom administration 120 years ago to treat venomous snake bit, it has been the gold standard for saving life and limb. However, this therapeutic approach is not always effective and not without potential life-threatening side effects. We tested a new paradigm to abrogate the plasmatic anticoagulant effects of fibrinogenolytic snake venom metalloproteinases by modification of fibrinogen with iron and carbon monoxide and by inhibiting these Zn(2+) dependent metalloproteinases directly with carbon monoxide exposure. Assessment of the fibrinogenolytic effects of venoms collected from Puff adder, Gaboon viper and Indian cobra snakes on plasmatic coagulation kinetics was performed with thrombelastography. Pretreatment of plasma with iron and carbon monoxide exposure markedly attenuated the effects of all three venoms, and direct pretreatment of each venom with carbon monoxide also significantly decreased the ability to compromise coagulation. These results demonstrated that the introduction of a transition metal (e.g., modulation of the α-chain of fibrinogen with iron), modulation of transition metal in heme (e.g., carbon monoxide modulation of fibrinogen-bound heme iron), and direct inhibition of transition metal containing venom enzymes (e.g., CO binding to Zn(2+) or displacing Zn(2+) from the catalytic site) significantly decreased fibrinogenolytic activity. This biometal modulation strategy to attenuate the anticoagulant effects of snake venom metalloproteinases could potentially diminish hemostatic injury in envenomed patients until antivenom can be administered. PMID:27492573

  19. Ontogenetic variability of Bothrops atrox and Bothrops asper snake venoms from Colombia.

    PubMed

    Saldarriaga, Mónica María; Otero, Rafael; Núñez, Vitelbina; Toro, Maria Fabiola; Díaz, Abel; Gutiérrez, José María

    2003-09-15

    The lancehead snakes Bothrops asper and Bothrops atrox inflict 70-90% of the 3000 bites reported every year in Colombia. In this work, the venoms of B. atrox from Meta (Villavicencio, 33 specimens) and B. asper from Antioquia (San Carlos, 45 specimens), all of them born in captivity, were obtained at different ages (0-6 months; 1, 2 and 3-years old) and compared in terms of their pharmacological and immunochemical characteristics. A conspicuous ontogenetic variability was observed in venom samples from both species. Venoms from newborn and juvenile specimens showed higher lethal, hemorrhagic, edema-forming and coagulant activities, whereas venoms from 3-year old specimens showed higher indirect hemolytic, i.e. phospholipase A2 activity, being more significant in the case of B. asper. SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis of whole venom for both species evidenced a predominance of high mol. mass bands in the venoms from specimens of <1 year of age, with a change towards bands having lower mol. mass as snakes aged. Gel filtration chromatography showed five peaks in the venoms of B. asper of <6 months and in those from 3-year old specimens. Venom of adult specimens showed a higher number of peaks with indirect hemolytic activity than venom of newborn specimens. Polyvalent antivenom produced in Costa Rica recognized all the bands of both venoms from specimens at all ages tested, when assayed by Western blotting. PMID:14505941

  20. Snake Venom Cytotoxins, Phospholipase A2s, and Zn2+-dependent Metalloproteinases: Mechanisms of Action and Pharmacological Relevance

    PubMed Central

    Gasanov, Sardar E; Dagda, Ruben K; Rael, Eppie D

    2014-01-01

    Snake venom toxins are responsible for causing severe pathology and toxicity following envenomation including necrosis, apoptosis, neurotoxicity, myotoxicity, cardiotoxicity, profuse hemorrhage, and disruption of blood homeostasis. Clinically, snake venom toxins therefore represent a significant hazard to snakebite victims which underscores the need to produce more efficient anti-venom. Some snake venom toxins, however, have great potential as drugs for treating human diseases. In this review, we discuss the biochemistry, structure/function, and pathology induced by snake venom toxins on human tissue. We provide a broad overview of cobra venom cytotoxins, catalytically active and inactive phospholipase A2s (PLA2s), and Zn2+-dependent metalloproteinases. We also propose biomedical applications whereby snake venom toxins can be employed for treating human diseases. Cobra venom cytotoxins, for example, may be utilized as anti-cancer agents since they are efficient at destroying certain types of cancer cells including leukemia. Additionally, increasing our understanding of the molecular mechanism(s) by which snake venom PLA2s promote hydrolysis of cell membrane phospholipids can give insight into the underlying biomedical implications for treating autoimmune disorders that are caused by dysregulated endogenous PLA2 activity. Lastly, we provide an exhaustive overview of snake venom Zn2+-dependent metalloproteinases and suggest ways by which these enzymes can be engineered for treating deep vein thrombosis and neurodegenerative disorders. PMID:24949227

  1. Sphero-echinocytosis of human red blood cells caused by snake, red-back spider, bee and blue-ringed octopus venoms and its inhibition by snake sera.

    PubMed

    Flachsenberger, W; Leigh, C M; Mirtschin, P J

    1995-06-01

    It was found that bee (Apis mellifera) venom, red-back spider (Latrodectus mactans) venom, blue-ringed octopus (Hapalochlaena maculosa) venom, ten different snake venoms, phospholipase A2 and four snake toxins caused sphero-echinocytosis of human red blood cells at 200 ng/ml. Most venoms and toxins lost the ability to deform human red blood cells when their components of less than mol. wt 10,000 were applied. In a number of cases the sphero-echinocytotic effect was also inhibited by blood sera of Notechis scutatus and Pseudonaja textilis. PMID:7676470

  2. Snake venom derived molecules in tumor angiogenesis and its application in cancer therapy; an overview.

    PubMed

    Dhananjaya, B L; Sivashankari, P R

    2015-01-01

    Snake venom is a complex mixture of biologically and pharmacologically active components, comprising hydrolytic enzymes, non-enzymatic proteins/peptides, and small amounts of organic and inorganic molecules. The venom components are known to vary with geographic location, season, species and age of the snakes. The role of the venom in the snake is not primarily for self-defense, but in prey immobilization and its subsequent digestion. Hence, several digestive enzymes in venoms, in addition to their hydrolytic activity have evolved to interfere in diverse physiological processes that help in the immobilization of prey/victim. As snake components are capable of modulating the physiological response of envenomated prey/victim, they show promise as potential pharmacological tools, as drug leads and in diagnostic applications. This, in a practical sense to be a reality has to be linked to the advances in toxinology that provide investigators with an understanding of the pharmacodynamics of toxins together with improved understanding of the etiology of many human diseases and identification of potential sites for therapeutic intervention. This review aims at providing an overview on snake venom toxins and their derivatives that have potential anti-angiogenic effects for cancer treatment. Some of the anti-angiogenic components of snake venom like Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs), Disintegrins, Phospholipases A2 (PLA2), CType Lectins (CLP), Vascular Apoptosis inducing Proteins (VAP) and L-Amino Acid Oxidases (LAAO) are discussed. This review aims at giving an overall view of these molecules and their mechanism of action as an effective antiangiogenic agent towards the treatment of cancer. PMID:25714377

  3. Snake venom derived molecules in tumor angiogenesis and its application in cancer therapy; an overview.

    PubMed

    Dhananjaya, B L; Sivashankari, P R

    2015-01-01

    Snake venom is a complex mixture of biologically and pharmacologically active components, comprising hydrolytic enzymes, non-enzymatic proteins/peptides, and small amounts of organic and inorganic molecules. The venom components are known to vary with geographic location, season, species and age of the snakes. The role of the venom in the snake is not primarily for self-defense, but in prey immobilization and its subsequent digestion. Hence, several digestive enzymes in venoms, in addition to their hydrolytic activity have evolved to interfere in diverse physiological processes that help in the immobilization of prey/victim. As snake components are capable of modulating the physiological response of envenomated prey/victim, they show promise as potential pharmacological tools, as drug leads and in diagnostic applications. This, in a practical sense to be a reality has to be linked to the advances in toxinology that provide investigators with an understanding of the pharmacodynamics of toxins together with improved understanding of the etiology of many human diseases and identification of potential sites for therapeutic intervention. This review aims at providing an overview on snake venom toxins and their derivatives that have potential anti-angiogenic effects for cancer treatment. Some of the anti-angiogenic components of snake venom like Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs), Disintegrins, Phospholipases A2 (PLA2), CType Lectins (CLP), Vascular Apoptosis inducing Proteins (VAP) and L-Amino Acid Oxidases (LAAO) are discussed. This review aims at giving an overall view of these molecules and their mechanism of action as an effective antiangiogenic agent towards the treatment of cancer.

  4. Exploring the venom proteome of the western diamondback rattlesnake, Crotalus atrox, via snake venomics and combinatorial peptide ligand library approaches.

    PubMed

    Calvete, Juan J; Fasoli, Elisa; Sanz, Libia; Boschetti, Egisto; Righetti, Pier Giorgio

    2009-06-01

    We report the proteomic characterization of the venom of the medically important North American western diamondback rattlesnake, Crotalus atrox, using two complementary approaches: snake venomics (to gain an insight of the overall venom proteome), and two solid-phase combinatorial peptide ligand libraries (CPLL), followed by 2D electrophoresis and mass spectrometric characterization of in-gel digested protein bands (to capture and "amplify" low-abundance proteins). The venomics approach revealed approximately 24 distinct proteins belonging to 2 major protein families (snake venom metalloproteinases, SVMP, and serine proteinases), which represent 69.5% of the total venom proteins, 4 medium abundance families (medium-size disintegrin, PLA(2), cysteine-rich secretory protein, and l-amino acid oxidase) amounting to 25.8% of the venom proteins, and 3 minor protein families (vasoactive peptides, endogenous inhibitor of SVMP, and C-type lectin-like). This toxin profile potentially explains the cytotoxic, myotoxic, hemotoxic, and hemorrhagic effects evoked by C. atrox envenomation. Further, our results showing that C. atrox exhibits a similar level of venom variation as Sistrurus miliarius points to a "diversity gain" scenario in the lineage leading to the Sistrurus catenatus taxa. On the other hand, the two combinatorial hexapeptide libraries captured distinct sets of proteins. Although the CPLL-treated samples did not retain a representative venom proteome, protein spots barely, or not at all, detectable in the whole venom were enriched in the two CPLL-treated samples. The amplified low copy number C. atrox venom proteins comprised a C-type lectin-like protein, several PLA(2) molecules, PIII-SVMP isoforms, glutaminyl cyclase isoforms, and a 2-cys peroxiredoxin highly conserved across the animal kingdom. Peroxiredoxin and glutaminyl cyclase may participate, respectively, in redox processes leading to the structural/functional diversification of toxins, and in the N

  5. Snake Venomics and Antivenomics of Bothrops diporus, a Medically Important Pitviper in Northeastern Argentina

    PubMed Central

    Gay, Carolina; Sanz, Libia; Calvete, Juan J.; Pla, Davinia

    2015-01-01

    Snake species within genus Bothrops are responsible for more than 80% of the snakebites occurring in South America. The species that cause most envenomings in Argentina, B. diporus, is widely distributed throughout the country, but principally found in the Northeast, the region with the highest rates of snakebites. The venom proteome of this medically relevant snake was unveiled using a venomic approach. It comprises toxins belonging to fourteen protein families, being dominated by PI- and PIII-SVMPs, PLA2 molecules, BPP-like peptides, L-amino acid oxidase and serine proteinases. This toxin profile largely explains the characteristic pathophysiological effects of bothropic snakebites observed in patients envenomed by B. diporus. Antivenomic analysis of the SAB antivenom (Instituto Vital Brazil) against the venom of B. diporus showed that this pentabothropic antivenom efficiently recognized all the venom proteins and exhibited poor affinity towards the small peptide (BPPs and tripeptide inhibitors of PIII-SVMPs) components of the venom. PMID:26712790

  6. Snake Venomics and Antivenomics of Bothrops diporus, a Medically Important Pitviper in Northeastern Argentina.

    PubMed

    Gay, Carolina; Sanz, Libia; Calvete, Juan J; Pla, Davinia

    2015-12-25

    Snake species within genus Bothrops are responsible for more than 80% of the snakebites occurring in South America. The species that cause most envenomings in Argentina, B. diporus, is widely distributed throughout the country, but principally found in the Northeast, the region with the highest rates of snakebites. The venom proteome of this medically relevant snake was unveiled using a venomic approach. It comprises toxins belonging to fourteen protein families, being dominated by PI- and PIII-SVMPs, PLA₂ molecules, BPP-like peptides, L-amino acid oxidase and serine proteinases. This toxin profile largely explains the characteristic pathophysiological effects of bothropic snakebites observed in patients envenomed by B. diporus. Antivenomic analysis of the SAB antivenom (Instituto Vital Brazil) against the venom of B. diporus showed that this pentabothropic antivenom efficiently recognized all the venom proteins and exhibited poor affinity towards the small peptide (BPPs and tripeptide inhibitors of PIII-SVMPs) components of the venom.

  7. Snake Venomics and Antivenomics of Bothrops diporus, a Medically Important Pitviper in Northeastern Argentina.

    PubMed

    Gay, Carolina; Sanz, Libia; Calvete, Juan J; Pla, Davinia

    2016-01-01

    Snake species within genus Bothrops are responsible for more than 80% of the snakebites occurring in South America. The species that cause most envenomings in Argentina, B. diporus, is widely distributed throughout the country, but principally found in the Northeast, the region with the highest rates of snakebites. The venom proteome of this medically relevant snake was unveiled using a venomic approach. It comprises toxins belonging to fourteen protein families, being dominated by PI- and PIII-SVMPs, PLA₂ molecules, BPP-like peptides, L-amino acid oxidase and serine proteinases. This toxin profile largely explains the characteristic pathophysiological effects of bothropic snakebites observed in patients envenomed by B. diporus. Antivenomic analysis of the SAB antivenom (Instituto Vital Brazil) against the venom of B. diporus showed that this pentabothropic antivenom efficiently recognized all the venom proteins and exhibited poor affinity towards the small peptide (BPPs and tripeptide inhibitors of PIII-SVMPs) components of the venom. PMID:26712790

  8. In vitro snake venom detoxifying action of the leaf extract of Guiera senegalensis.

    PubMed

    Abubakar, M S; Sule, M I; Pateh, U U; Abdurahman, E M; Haruna, A K; Jahun, B M

    2000-03-01

    The extract of the leaves of Guiera senegalensis was found to detoxify (in vitro) venom from two common northern Nigerian snake species, Echis carinatus and Naja nigricollis, in separate experiments. There was a remarkable reduction in the mortality of albino mice after intra-peritoneal (i.p.) administration of reconstituted venom incubated with the extract, when compared to those challenged with the venom only. The survival of the animals exposed to the venom incubated with the different concentrations of the extract was used as the in vitro detoxification parameter.

  9. Up-regulation of the expressions of phospholipase A2 inhibitors in the liver of a venomous snake by its own venom phospholipase A2.

    PubMed

    Kinkawa, Kohshi; Shirai, Ryoichi; Watanabe, Shin; Toriba, Michihisa; Hayashi, Kyozo; Ikeda, Kiyoshi; Inoue, Seiji

    2010-05-01

    Venomous snakes such as Gloydius brevicaudus have three distinct types of phospholipase A(2) inhibitors (PLIalpha, PLIbeta, and PLIgamma) in their blood so as to protect themselves from their own venom phospholipases A(2) (PLA(2)s). Expressions of these PLIs in G. brevicaudus liver were found to be enhanced by the intramuscular injection of its own venom. The enhancement of gene expressions of PLIalpha and PLIbeta in the liver was also found to be induced by acidic PLA(2) contained in this venom. Furthermore, these effects of acidic PLA(2) on gene expression of PLIs were shown to be unrelated to its enzymatic activity. These results suggest that these venomous snakes have developed the self-protective system against their own venom, by which the venom components up-regulate the expression of anti-venom proteins in their liver.

  10. Venomic Analysis of the Poorly Studied Desert Coral Snake, Micrurus tschudii tschudii, Supports the 3FTx/PLA₂ Dichotomy across Micrurus Venoms.

    PubMed

    Sanz, Libia; Pla, Davinia; Pérez, Alicia; Rodríguez, Yania; Zavaleta, Alfonso; Salas, Maria; Lomonte, Bruno; Calvete, Juan J

    2016-06-07

    The venom proteome of the poorly studied desert coral snake Micrurus tschudii tschudii was unveiled using a venomic approach, which identified ≥38 proteins belonging to only four snake venom protein families. The three-finger toxins (3FTxs) constitute, both in number of isoforms (~30) and total abundance (93.6% of the venom proteome), the major protein family of the desert coral snake venom. Phospholipases A₂ (PLA₂s; seven isoforms, 4.1% of the venom proteome), 1-3 Kunitz-type proteins (1.6%), and 1-2 l-amino acid oxidases (LAO, 0.7%) complete the toxin arsenal of M. t. tschudii. Our results add to the growing evidence that the occurrence of two divergent venom phenotypes, i.e., 3FTx- and PLA₂-predominant venom proteomes, may constitute a general trend across the cladogenesis of Micrurus. The occurrence of a similar pattern of venom phenotypic variability among true sea snake (Hydrophiinae) venoms suggests that the 3FTx/PLA₂ dichotomy may be widely distributed among Elapidae venoms.

  11. Venomic Analysis of the Poorly Studied Desert Coral Snake, Micrurus tschudii tschudii, Supports the 3FTx/PLA₂ Dichotomy across Micrurus Venoms.

    PubMed

    Sanz, Libia; Pla, Davinia; Pérez, Alicia; Rodríguez, Yania; Zavaleta, Alfonso; Salas, Maria; Lomonte, Bruno; Calvete, Juan J

    2016-01-01

    The venom proteome of the poorly studied desert coral snake Micrurus tschudii tschudii was unveiled using a venomic approach, which identified ≥38 proteins belonging to only four snake venom protein families. The three-finger toxins (3FTxs) constitute, both in number of isoforms (~30) and total abundance (93.6% of the venom proteome), the major protein family of the desert coral snake venom. Phospholipases A₂ (PLA₂s; seven isoforms, 4.1% of the venom proteome), 1-3 Kunitz-type proteins (1.6%), and 1-2 l-amino acid oxidases (LAO, 0.7%) complete the toxin arsenal of M. t. tschudii. Our results add to the growing evidence that the occurrence of two divergent venom phenotypes, i.e., 3FTx- and PLA₂-predominant venom proteomes, may constitute a general trend across the cladogenesis of Micrurus. The occurrence of a similar pattern of venom phenotypic variability among true sea snake (Hydrophiinae) venoms suggests that the 3FTx/PLA₂ dichotomy may be widely distributed among Elapidae venoms. PMID:27338473

  12. Venomic Analysis of the Poorly Studied Desert Coral Snake, Micrurus tschudii tschudii, Supports the 3FTx/PLA2 Dichotomy across Micrurus Venoms

    PubMed Central

    Sanz, Libia; Pla, Davinia; Pérez, Alicia; Rodríguez, Yania; Zavaleta, Alfonso; Salas, Maria; Lomonte, Bruno; Calvete, Juan J.

    2016-01-01

    The venom proteome of the poorly studied desert coral snake Micrurus tschudii tschudii was unveiled using a venomic approach, which identified ≥38 proteins belonging to only four snake venom protein families. The three-finger toxins (3FTxs) constitute, both in number of isoforms (~30) and total abundance (93.6% of the venom proteome), the major protein family of the desert coral snake venom. Phospholipases A2 (PLA2s; seven isoforms, 4.1% of the venom proteome), 1–3 Kunitz-type proteins (1.6%), and 1–2 l-amino acid oxidases (LAO, 0.7%) complete the toxin arsenal of M. t. tschudii. Our results add to the growing evidence that the occurrence of two divergent venom phenotypes, i.e., 3FTx- and PLA2-predominant venom proteomes, may constitute a general trend across the cladogenesis of Micrurus. The occurrence of a similar pattern of venom phenotypic variability among true sea snake (Hydrophiinae) venoms suggests that the 3FTx/PLA2 dichotomy may be widely distributed among Elapidae venoms. PMID:27338473

  13. Assessment of the Antimicrobial Activity of Few Saudi Arabian Snake Venoms

    PubMed Central

    Al-Asmari, Abdulrahman K.; Abbasmanthiri, Rajamohamed; Abdo Osman, Nasreddien M.; Siddiqui, Yunus; Al-Bannah, Faisal Ahmed; Al-Rawi, Abdulgadir M.; Al-Asmari, Sarah A.

    2015-01-01

    Background Venoms of two cobras, four vipers, a standard antibiotic and an antimycotic, were evaluated comparatively, as antimicrobials. Methods: Six venom concentrations and three of the standard antibiotic and the antimycotic were run in micro-dilution and diffusion plates against the microorganisms. RESULTS: Echis pyramidum, Echis coloratus and Cerastes cerastes gasperettii highest venom concentrations gave significant growth inhibition zones (GIZ) with respect to a negative control, except Bitis arietans, whose concentrations were significant. The cobra Walterinnesia aegyptia had significant venom concentrations more than Naja haje arabica. The Staphylococcus aureus Methicillin Resistant (MRSA) bacterium was the most susceptible, with a highly (P < 0.001) significant GIZ mean difference followed by the Gram positive Staphylococcus aureus, (P < 0.001), Escherichia coli (P < 0.001), Enterococcus faecalis (P < 0.001) and Pseudomonas aeruginosa which, had the least significance (P < 0.05). The fungus Candida albicans was resistant to both viper and cobra venoms (P > 0.05). The antibiotic Vancomycin was more effective than snake venoms though, they were more efficient in inhibiting growth of the resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa. This antibiotic was also inactive against the fungus, whilst its specific antifungal Fungizone was highly efficient with no antibacterial activity. Conclusions: These findings showed that snake venoms had antibacterial activity comparable to antibiotics, with a directly proportional relationship of venom concentration and GIZ, though, they were more efficient in combatting resistant types of bacteria. Both venoms and the standard antibiotic, showed no antifungal benefits. PMID:26668657

  14. Elapid snake venom analyses show the specificity of the peptide composition at the level of genera Naja and Notechis.

    PubMed

    Munawar, Aisha; Trusch, Maria; Georgieva, Dessislava; Hildebrand, Diana; Kwiatkowski, Marcel; Behnken, Henning; Harder, Sönke; Arni, Raghuvir; Spencer, Patrick; Schlüter, Hartmut; Betzel, Christian

    2014-03-01

    Elapid snake venom is a highly valuable, but till now mainly unexplored, source of pharmacologically important peptides. We analyzed the peptide fractions with molecular masses up to 10 kDa of two elapid snake venoms-that of the African cobra, N. m. mossambica (genus Naja), and the Peninsula tiger snake, N. scutatus, from Kangaroo Island (genus Notechis). A combination of chromatographic methods was used to isolate the peptides, which were characterized by combining complimentary mass spectrometric techniques. Comparative analysis of the peptide compositions of two venoms showed specificity at the genus level. Three-finger (3-F) cytotoxins, bradykinin-potentiating peptides (BPPs) and a bradykinin inhibitor were isolated from the Naja venom. 3-F neurotoxins, Kunitz/basic pancreatic trypsin inhibitor (BPTI)-type inhibitors and a natriuretic peptide were identified in the N. venom. The inhibiting activity of the peptides was confirmed in vitro with a selected array of proteases. Cytotoxin 1 (P01467) from the Naja venom might be involved in the disturbance of cellular processes by inhibiting the cell 20S-proteasome. A high degree of similarity between BPPs from elapid and viperid snake venoms was observed, suggesting that these molecules play a key role in snake venoms and also indicating that these peptides were recruited into the snake venom prior to the evolutionary divergence of the snakes. PMID:24590383

  15. Elapid snake venom analyses show the specificity of the peptide composition at the level of genera Naja and Notechis.

    PubMed

    Munawar, Aisha; Trusch, Maria; Georgieva, Dessislava; Hildebrand, Diana; Kwiatkowski, Marcel; Behnken, Henning; Harder, Sönke; Arni, Raghuvir; Spencer, Patrick; Schlüter, Hartmut; Betzel, Christian

    2014-03-01

    Elapid snake venom is a highly valuable, but till now mainly unexplored, source of pharmacologically important peptides. We analyzed the peptide fractions with molecular masses up to 10 kDa of two elapid snake venoms-that of the African cobra, N. m. mossambica (genus Naja), and the Peninsula tiger snake, N. scutatus, from Kangaroo Island (genus Notechis). A combination of chromatographic methods was used to isolate the peptides, which were characterized by combining complimentary mass spectrometric techniques. Comparative analysis of the peptide compositions of two venoms showed specificity at the genus level. Three-finger (3-F) cytotoxins, bradykinin-potentiating peptides (BPPs) and a bradykinin inhibitor were isolated from the Naja venom. 3-F neurotoxins, Kunitz/basic pancreatic trypsin inhibitor (BPTI)-type inhibitors and a natriuretic peptide were identified in the N. venom. The inhibiting activity of the peptides was confirmed in vitro with a selected array of proteases. Cytotoxin 1 (P01467) from the Naja venom might be involved in the disturbance of cellular processes by inhibiting the cell 20S-proteasome. A high degree of similarity between BPPs from elapid and viperid snake venoms was observed, suggesting that these molecules play a key role in snake venoms and also indicating that these peptides were recruited into the snake venom prior to the evolutionary divergence of the snakes.

  16. Differential action of medically important Indian BIG FOUR snake venoms on rodent blood coagulation.

    PubMed

    Hiremath, Vilas; Nanjaraj Urs, A N; Joshi, Vikram; Suvilesh, K N; Savitha, M N; Urs Amog, Prathap; Rudresha, G V; Yariswamy, M; Vishwanath, B S

    2016-02-01

    Snakebite is a global health problem affecting millions of people. According to WHO, India has the highest mortality and/or morbidity due to snakebite. In spite of commendable research on Indian BIG FOUR venomous species; Naja naja and Bungarus caeruleus (elapid); Daboia russelii and Echis carinatus (viperid), no significant progress has been achieved in terms of diagnosis and management of biting species with appropriate anti-snake venom. Major hurdle is identification of offending species. Present study aims at differentiation of Indian BIG FOUR snake venoms based on their distinguish action on rodent blood coagulation. Assessment of coagulation alterations by elapid venoms showed negligible effect on re-calcification time, prothrombin time, activated partial thromboplastin time and factors assay (I, II, V, VIII and X) both in vitro and in vivo. However, viperid venoms demonstrated significant anticoagulant status due to their remarkable fibrinogen degradation potentials as supported by fibrinogenolytic activity, fibrinogen zymography and rotational thromboelastometry. Though results provide hint on probable alterations of Indian BIG FOUR snake venoms on blood coagulation, the study however needs validation from human victim's samples to ascertain its reliability for identification of biting snake species.

  17. The Triterpenoid Betulin Protects against the Neuromuscular Effects of Bothrops jararacussu Snake Venom In Vivo

    PubMed Central

    Ferraz, Miriéle Cristina; de Oliveira, Jhones Luiz; de Oliveira Junior, Joel Reis; Cogo, José Carlos; dos Santos, Márcio Galdino; Franco, Luiz Madaleno; Puebla, Pilar; Ferraz, Helena Onishi; Ferraz, Humberto Gomes; da Rocha, Marisa Maria Teixeira; Hyslop, Stephen; San Feliciano, Arturo; Oshima-Franco, Yoko

    2015-01-01

    We confirmed the ability of the triterpenoid betulin to protect against neurotoxicity caused by Bothrops jararacussu snake venom in vitro in mouse isolated phrenic nerve-diaphragm (PND) preparations and examined its capability of in vivo protection using the rat external popliteal/sciatic nerve-tibialis anterior (EPSTA) preparation. Venom caused complete, irreversible blockade in PND (40 μg/mL), but only partial blockade (~30%) in EPSTA (3.6 mg/kg, i.m.) after 120 min. In PND, preincubation of venom with commercial bothropic antivenom (CBA) attenuated the venom-induced blockade, and, in EPSTA, CBA given i.v. 15 min after venom also attenuated the blockade (by ~70% in both preparations). Preincubation of venom with betulin (200 μg/mL) markedly attenuated the venom-induced blockade in PND; similarly, a single dose of betulin (20 mg, i.p., 15 min after venom) virtually abolished the venom-induced decrease in contractility. Plasma creatine kinase activity was significantly elevated 120 min after venom injection in the EPSTA but was attenuated by CBA and betulin. These results indicate that betulin given i.p. has a similar efficacy as CBA given i.v. in attenuating the neuromuscular effects of B. jararacussu venom in vivo and could be a useful complementary measure to antivenom therapy for treating snakebite. PMID:26633987

  18. The Triterpenoid Betulin Protects against the Neuromuscular Effects of Bothrops jararacussu Snake Venom In Vivo.

    PubMed

    Ferraz, Miriéle Cristina; de Oliveira, Jhones Luiz; de Oliveira Junior, Joel Reis; Cogo, José Carlos; Dos Santos, Márcio Galdino; Franco, Luiz Madaleno; Puebla, Pilar; Ferraz, Helena Onishi; Ferraz, Humberto Gomes; da Rocha, Marisa Maria Teixeira; Hyslop, Stephen; San Feliciano, Arturo; Oshima-Franco, Yoko

    2015-01-01

    We confirmed the ability of the triterpenoid betulin to protect against neurotoxicity caused by Bothrops jararacussu snake venom in vitro in mouse isolated phrenic nerve-diaphragm (PND) preparations and examined its capability of in vivo protection using the rat external popliteal/sciatic nerve-tibialis anterior (EPSTA) preparation. Venom caused complete, irreversible blockade in PND (40 μg/mL), but only partial blockade (~30%) in EPSTA (3.6 mg/kg, i.m.) after 120 min. In PND, preincubation of venom with commercial bothropic antivenom (CBA) attenuated the venom-induced blockade, and, in EPSTA, CBA given i.v. 15 min after venom also attenuated the blockade (by ~70% in both preparations). Preincubation of venom with betulin (200 μg/mL) markedly attenuated the venom-induced blockade in PND; similarly, a single dose of betulin (20 mg, i.p., 15 min after venom) virtually abolished the venom-induced decrease in contractility. Plasma creatine kinase activity was significantly elevated 120 min after venom injection in the EPSTA but was attenuated by CBA and betulin. These results indicate that betulin given i.p. has a similar efficacy as CBA given i.v. in attenuating the neuromuscular effects of B. jararacussu venom in vivo and could be a useful complementary measure to antivenom therapy for treating snakebite. PMID:26633987

  19. Inhibition of pancreatic tumoral cells by snake venom disintegrins

    PubMed Central

    Lucena, Sara; Castro, Roberto; Lundin, Courtney; Hofstetter, Amanda; Alaniz, Amber; Suntravat, Montamas; Sánchez, Elda Eliza

    2014-01-01

    Pancreatic cancer often has a poor prognosis, even when diagnosed early. Pancreatic cancer typically spreads rapidly and is rarely detected in its early stages, which is a major reason it is a leading cause of cancer death. Signs and symptoms may not appear until pancreatic cancer is quite advanced, and complete surgical removal is not possible. Furthermore, pancreatic cancer responds poorly to most chemotherapeutic agents. The importance of integrins in several cell types that affect tumor progression has made them an appealing target for cancer therapy. Some of the proteins found in the snake venom present a great potential as anti-tumor agents. In this study, we summarize the activity of two integrins antagonist, recombinant disintegrins mojastin 1 and viridistatin 2, on human pancreatic carcinoma cell line (BXPC-3). Both recombinant disintegrins inhibited some essential aspects of the metastasis process such as proliferation, adhesion, migration, and survival through apoptosis, making these proteins prominent candidates for the development of drugs for the treatment of pancreatic cancer. PMID:25450798

  20. Snake venom L-amino acid oxidases: an overview on their antitumor effects

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    The L-amino acid oxidases (LAAOs) constitute a major component of snake venoms and have been widely studied due to their widespread presence and various effects, such as apoptosis induction, cytotoxicity, induction and/or inhibition of platelet aggregation, hemorrhage, hemolysis, edema, as well as antimicrobial, antiparasitic and anti-HIV activities. The isolated and characterized snake venom LAAOs have become important research targets due to their potential biotechnological applications in pursuit for new drugs of interest in the scientific and medical fields. The current study discusses the antitumor effects of snake venom LAAOs described in the literature to date, highlighting the mechanisms of apoptosis induction proposed for this class of proteins. PMID:24940304

  1. Elapid Snake Venom Analyses Show the Specificity of the Peptide Composition at the Level of Genera Naja and Notechis

    PubMed Central

    Munawar, Aisha; Trusch, Maria; Georgieva, Dessislava; Hildebrand, Diana; Kwiatkowski, Marcel; Behnken, Henning; Harder, Sönke; Arni, Raghuvir; Spencer, Patrick; Schlüter, Hartmut; Betzel, Christian

    2014-01-01

    Elapid snake venom is a highly valuable, but till now mainly unexplored, source of pharmacologically important peptides. We analyzed the peptide fractions with molecular masses up to 10 kDa of two elapid snake venoms—that of the African cobra, N. m. mossambica (genus Naja), and the Peninsula tiger snake, N. scutatus, from Kangaroo Island (genus Notechis). A combination of chromatographic methods was used to isolate the peptides, which were characterized by combining complimentary mass spectrometric techniques. Comparative analysis of the peptide compositions of two venoms showed specificity at the genus level. Three-finger (3-F) cytotoxins, bradykinin-potentiating peptides (BPPs) and a bradykinin inhibitor were isolated from the Naja venom. 3-F neurotoxins, Kunitz/basic pancreatic trypsin inhibitor (BPTI)-type inhibitors and a natriuretic peptide were identified in the N. venom. The inhibiting activity of the peptides was confirmed in vitro with a selected array of proteases. Cytotoxin 1 (P01467) from the Naja venom might be involved in the disturbance of cellular processes by inhibiting the cell 20S-proteasome. A high degree of similarity between BPPs from elapid and viperid snake venoms was observed, suggesting that these molecules play a key role in snake venoms and also indicating that these peptides were recruited into the snake venom prior to the evolutionary divergence of the snakes. PMID:24590383

  2. Contribution of cinnamic acid analogues in rosmarinic acid to inhibition of snake venom induced hemorrhage.

    PubMed

    Aung, Hnin Thanda; Furukawa, Tadashi; Nikai, Toshiaki; Niwa, Masatake; Takaya, Yoshiaki

    2011-04-01

    In our previous paper, we reported that rosmarinic acid (1) of Argusia argentea could neutralize snake venom induced hemorrhagic action. Rosmarinic acid (1) consists of two phenylpropanoids: caffeic acid (2) and 3-(3,4-dihydroxyphenyl)lactic acid (3). In this study, we investigated the structural requirements necessary for inhibition of snake venom activity through the use of compounds, which are structurally related to rosmarinic acid (1). By examining anti-hemorrhagic activity of cinnamic acid analogs against Protobothrops flavoviridis (Habu) venom, it was revealed that the presence of the E-enoic acid moiety (-CH=CH-COOH) was critical. Furthermore, among the compound tested, it was concluded that rosmarinic acid (1) (IC(50) 0.15 μM) was the most potent inhibitor against the venom.

  3. Inhibitory effect of plant Manilkara subsericea against biological activities of Lachesis muta snake venom.

    PubMed

    De Oliveira, Eduardo Coriolano; Fernandes, Caio Pinho; Sanchez, Eladio Flores; Rocha, Leandro; Fuly, André Lopes

    2014-01-01

    Snake venom is composed of a mixture of substances that caused in victims a variety of pathophysiological effects. Besides antivenom, literature has described plants able to inhibit injuries and lethal activities induced by snake venoms. This work describes the inhibitory potential of ethanol, hexane, ethyl acetate, or dichloromethane extracts and fractions from stem and leaves of Manilkara subsericea against in vivo (hemorrhagic and edema) and in vitro (clotting, hemolysis, and proteolysis) activities caused by Lachesis muta venom. All the tested activities were totally or at least partially reduced by M. subsericea. However, when L. muta venom was injected into mice 15 min first or after the materials, hemorrhage and edema were not inhibited. Thus, M. subsericea could be used as antivenom in snakebites of L. muta. And, this work also highlights Brazilian flora as a rich source of molecules with antivenom properties.

  4. Inhibitory Effect of Plant Manilkara subsericea against Biological Activities of Lachesis muta Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    De Oliveira, Eduardo Coriolano; Fernandes, Caio Pinho; Sanchez, Eladio Flores; Fuly, André Lopes

    2014-01-01

    Snake venom is composed of a mixture of substances that caused in victims a variety of pathophysiological effects. Besides antivenom, literature has described plants able to inhibit injuries and lethal activities induced by snake venoms. This work describes the inhibitory potential of ethanol, hexane, ethyl acetate, or dichloromethane extracts and fractions from stem and leaves of Manilkara subsericea against in vivo (hemorrhagic and edema) and in vitro (clotting, hemolysis, and proteolysis) activities caused by Lachesis muta venom. All the tested activities were totally or at least partially reduced by M. subsericea. However, when L. muta venom was injected into mice 15 min first or after the materials, hemorrhage and edema were not inhibited. Thus, M. subsericea could be used as antivenom in snakebites of L. muta. And, this work also highlights Brazilian flora as a rich source of molecules with antivenom properties. PMID:24511532

  5. Snake Venom PLA2s Inhibitors Isolated from Brazilian Plants: Synthetic and Natural Molecules

    PubMed Central

    Carvalho, B. M. A.; Santos, J. D. L.; Xavier, B. M.; Almeida, J. R.; Resende, L. M.; Martins, W.; Marcussi, S.; Marangoni, S.; Stábeli, R. G.; Calderon, L. A.; Soares, A. M.; Da Silva, S. L.; Marchi-Salvador, D. P.

    2013-01-01

    Ophidian envenomation is an important health problem in Brazil and other South American countries. In folk medicine, especially in developing countries, several vegetal species are employed for the treatment of snakebites in communities that lack prompt access to serum therapy. However, the identification and characterization of the effects of several new plants or their isolated compounds, which are able to inhibit the activities of snake venom, are extremely important and such studies are imperative. Snake venom contains several organic and inorganic compounds; phospholipases A2 (PLA2s) are one of the principal toxic components of venom. PLA2s display a wide variety of pharmacological activities, such as neurotoxicity, myotoxicity, cardiotoxicity, anticoagulant, hemorrhagic, and edema-inducing effects. PLA2 inhibition is of pharmacological and therapeutic interests as these enzymes are involved in several inflammatory diseases. This review describes the results of several studies of plant extracts and their isolated active principles, when used against crude snake venoms or their toxic fractions. Isolated inhibitors, such as steroids, terpenoids, and phenolic compounds, are able to inhibit PLA2s from different snake venoms. The design of specific inhibitors of PLA2s might help in the development of new pharmaceutical drugs, more specific antivenom, or even as alternative approaches for treating snakebites. PMID:24171158

  6. Snake venom PLA2s inhibitors isolated from Brazilian plants: synthetic and natural molecules.

    PubMed

    Carvalho, B M A; Santos, J D L; Xavier, B M; Almeida, J R; Resende, L M; Martins, W; Marcussi, S; Marangoni, S; Stábeli, R G; Calderon, L A; Soares, A M; Da Silva, S L; Marchi-Salvador, D P

    2013-01-01

    Ophidian envenomation is an important health problem in Brazil and other South American countries. In folk medicine, especially in developing countries, several vegetal species are employed for the treatment of snakebites in communities that lack prompt access to serum therapy. However, the identification and characterization of the effects of several new plants or their isolated compounds, which are able to inhibit the activities of snake venom, are extremely important and such studies are imperative. Snake venom contains several organic and inorganic compounds; phospholipases A2 (PLA2s) are one of the principal toxic components of venom. PLA2s display a wide variety of pharmacological activities, such as neurotoxicity, myotoxicity, cardiotoxicity, anticoagulant, hemorrhagic, and edema-inducing effects. PLA2 inhibition is of pharmacological and therapeutic interests as these enzymes are involved in several inflammatory diseases. This review describes the results of several studies of plant extracts and their isolated active principles, when used against crude snake venoms or their toxic fractions. Isolated inhibitors, such as steroids, terpenoids, and phenolic compounds, are able to inhibit PLA2s from different snake venoms. The design of specific inhibitors of PLA2s might help in the development of new pharmaceutical drugs, more specific antivenom, or even as alternative approaches for treating snakebites.

  7. Ontogenetic Variation in Biological Activities of Venoms from Hybrids between Bothrops erythromelas and Bothrops neuwiedi Snakes.

    PubMed

    Santoro, Marcelo Larami; do Carmo, Thaís; Cunha, Bruna Heloísa Lopes; Alves, André Fonseca; Zelanis, André; Serrano, Solange Maria de Toledo; Grego, Kathleen Fernandes; Sant'Anna, Savio Stefanini; Barbaro, Katia Cristina; Fernandes, Wilson

    2015-01-01

    Lance-headed snakes are found in Central and South America, and they account for most snakebites in Brazil. The phylogeny of South American pitvipers has been reviewed, and the presence of natural and non-natural hybrids between different species of Bothrops snakes demonstrates that reproductive isolation of several species is still incomplete. The present study aimed to analyze the biological features, particularly the thrombin-like activity, of venoms from hybrids born in captivity, from the mating of a female Bothrops erythromelas and a male Bothrops neuwiedi, two species whose venoms are known to display ontogenetic variation. Proteolytic activity on azocoll and amidolytic activity on N-benzoyl-DL-arginine-p-nitroanilide hydrochloride (BAPNA) were lowest when hybrids were 3 months old, and increased over body growth, reaching values similar to those of the father when hybrids were 12 months old. The clotting activity on plasma diminished as hybrids grew; venoms from 3- and 6-months old hybrids showed low clotting activity on fibrinogen (i.e., thrombin-like activity), like the mother venom, and such activity was detected only when hybrids were older than 1 year of age. Altogether, these results point out that venom features in hybrid snakes are genetically controlled during the ontogenetic development. Despite the presence of the thrombin-like enzyme gene(s) in hybrid snakes, they are silenced during the first six months of life. PMID:26714190

  8. Ontogenetic Variation in Biological Activities of Venoms from Hybrids between Bothrops erythromelas and Bothrops neuwiedi Snakes

    PubMed Central

    Santoro, Marcelo Larami; do Carmo, Thaís; Cunha, Bruna Heloísa Lopes; Alves, André Fonseca; Zelanis, André; Serrano, Solange Maria de Toledo; Grego, Kathleen Fernandes; Sant’Anna, Savio Stefanini; Barbaro, Katia Cristina; Fernandes, Wilson

    2015-01-01

    Lance-headed snakes are found in Central and South America, and they account for most snakebites in Brazil. The phylogeny of South American pitvipers has been reviewed, and the presence of natural and non-natural hybrids between different species of Bothrops snakes demonstrates that reproductive isolation of several species is still incomplete. The present study aimed to analyze the biological features, particularly the thrombin-like activity, of venoms from hybrids born in captivity, from the mating of a female Bothrops erythromelas and a male Bothrops neuwiedi, two species whose venoms are known to display ontogenetic variation. Proteolytic activity on azocoll and amidolytic activity on N-benzoyl-DL-arginine-p-nitroanilide hydrochloride (BAPNA) were lowest when hybrids were 3 months old, and increased over body growth, reaching values similar to those of the father when hybrids were 12 months old. The clotting activity on plasma diminished as hybrids grew; venoms from 3- and 6-months old hybrids showed low clotting activity on fibrinogen (i.e., thrombin-like activity), like the mother venom, and such activity was detected only when hybrids were older than 1 year of age. Altogether, these results point out that venom features in hybrid snakes are genetically controlled during the ontogenetic development. Despite the presence of the thrombin-like enzyme gene(s) in hybrid snakes, they are silenced during the first six months of life. PMID:26714190

  9. Cytotoxic Effect of Iranian Vipera lebetina Snake Venom on HUVEC Cells

    PubMed Central

    Kakanj, Maryam; Ghazi-Khansari, Mahmoud; Zare Mirakabadi, Abbas; Daraei, Bahram; Vatanpour, Hossein

    2015-01-01

    Objective: Envenomation by heamotoxic snakes constituted a critical health occurrence in the world. Bleeding is the most sever consequence following snake bite with viperid and crothalid snakes. It is believed that the degradation of vascular membrane caused hemorrhage; in contrast, some suggested that direct cytotoxicity has role in endothelial cell disturbances. This study was carried out to evaluate the direct toxicity effect of V. lebetina crude venom on Human Umbilical Vein Endothelial Cells (HUVECs). Methods: The effect of V. lebetina snake venom on HUVECs growth inhibition was determined by MTT assay and neutral red uptake assay. The integrity of cell membrane through LDH release was measured with the Cytotoxicity Detection Kit. Morphological changes of endothelial cells were also evaluated using a phase contrast microscope. Result: In MTT assay, crude venom showed a cytotoxic effect on endothelial cells which was confirmed by the effect observed with neutral red assay. Also, crude venom caused changes in the integrity of cell membrane by LDH release. The morphological alterations enhanced in high concentration results in total cells number reduced. Conclusion: V. lebetina venom showed potential direct cytotoxic effects on human endothelial cells in a manner of concentration- dependent inhibition. PMID:26185512

  10. Inhibition of toxic activities of Bothrops asper venom and other crotalid snake venoms by a novel neutralizing mixture.

    PubMed

    Borkow, G; Gutierrez, J M; Ovadia, M

    1997-12-01

    The majority of snake bites in Central America are caused by Bothrops asper, whose venom induce complex local effects such as myonecrosis, edema and especially hemorrhage. These effects are only partially neutralized by the clinically used antivenom, even when administered rapidly after envenomation. Recently we screened 49 substances for antihemorrhagic activity and found that a mixture composed of CaNa2, EDTA, a B. asper serum fraction (natural antidote), and the currently used horse polyvalent antiserum is highly effective in the neutralization of local and systemic hemorrhage developing after B. asper envenomation (Borkow et al., Toxicon 35, 865-877, 1997). In the present study we screened the best six antihemorrhagic compounds for their capacity to neutralize the lethal activity in mice and the proteolytic, hemolytic, and antiattachment activities in vitro of the venom. The compounds tested included the currently used horse antivenom, rabbit antiserum against whole B. asper venom or against heated venom, B. asper and Natrix tessellata serum fractions, and CaNa2 EDTA. The constituents of the antihemorrhagic mixture were also the best inhibitors of the other examined toxic activities. Importantly, the mixture effectively neutralized toxic activities of an additional nine venoms from snakes abundant in Central America. This work suggests that the polyvalent antivenom used in Central America could be enriched with a B. asper serum fraction producing a more effective antivenom. In addition, the local application of CaNa2 EDTA to neutralize hemorrhagic toxins, immediately after a snake bite, may provide rapid inhibition of local damage caused by the venoms. PMID:9439739

  11. Evolution of venom antigenaemia and antivenom concentration in patients bitten by snakes in Uruguay.

    PubMed

    Morais, Victor; Negrín, Alba; Tortorella, María Noel; Massaldi, Hugo

    2012-11-01

    In this work we describe the first study carried out in Uruguay of venom antigenaemia and antivenom concentration in patients bitten by snakes. Between 50 and 70 snake bite accidents per year are caused in Uruguay by 2 species: Rhinocerophis alternatus and Bothropoides pubescens. The patients are treated with a specific polyvalent antivenom. Gaining insight on the evolution of venom antigenaemia and antivenom concentration in patients is important to improve treatment protocols. Blood samples of 29 patients were analysed to determine venom and antivenom concentrations at different times. Venom was detected in 18 of 19 samples before antivenom administration, with a mean concentration of 57 ng/mL. Most of the patients received 4 or 8 vials to neutralize the venom effects. Only one patient needed a total of 16 vials. He showed a severe envenomation and needed supplementary amounts of antivenom after the fifth day of the snake bite accident to reach normal clotting parameters. Antivenom concentrations were determined at 12 h, 24 h and 15 days after antivenom administration. It was found a faster antivenom decrease between 12 and 24 h than to 24 h to 15 days. This was explained by a different clearance mechanism in each period. In the first phase, the cause would be the neutralization of venom present in the blood whereas in the second phase it would be due to unbound antivenom elimination.

  12. Isolation, functional, and partial biochemical characterization of galatrox, an acidic lectin from Bothrops atrox snake venom.

    PubMed

    Mendonça-Franqueiro, Elaine de Paula; Alves-Paiva, Raquel de Melo; Sartim, Marco Aurélio; Callejon, Daniel Roberto; Paiva, Helder Henrique; Antonucci, Gilmara Ausech; Rosa, José César; Cintra, Adélia Cristina Oliveira; Franco, João José; Arantes, Eliane Candiani; Dias-Baruffi, Marcelo; Sampaio, Suely Vilela

    2011-03-01

    Snake venom lectins have been studied in regard to their chemical structure and biological functions. However, little is known about lectins isolated from Bothrops atrox snake venom. We report here the isolation and partial functional and biochemical characterization of an acidic glycan-binding protein called galatrox from this venom. This lectin was purified by affinity chromatography using a lactosyl-sepharose column, and its homogeneity and molecular mass were evaluated by high-performance liquid chromatography, sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, and matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization-time-of-flight mass spectrometry. The purified galatrox was homogeneous and characterized as an acidic protein (pI 5.2) with a monomeric and dimeric molecular mass of 16.2 and 32.5 kDa, respectively. Alignment of N-terminal and internal amino acid sequences of galatrox indicated that this protein exhibits high homology to other C-type snake venom lectins. Galatrox showed optimal hemagglutinating activity at a concentration of 100 μg/ml and this effect was drastically inhibited by lactose, ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid, and heating, which confirmed galatrox's lectin activity. While galatrox failed to induce the same level of paw edema or mast cell degranulation as B. atrox crude venom, galatrox did alter cellular viability, which suggested that galatrox might contribute to venom toxicity by directly inducing cell death. PMID:21297119

  13. Antitumoral Activity of Snake Venom Proteins: New Trends in Cancer Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Calderon, Leonardo A.; Sobrinho, Juliana C.; Zaqueo, Kayena D.; de Moura, Andrea A.; Grabner, Amy N.; Mazzi, Maurício V.; Marcussi, Silvana; Fernandes, Carla F. C.; Zuliani, Juliana P.; Carvalho, Bruna M. A.; da Silva, Saulo L.; Stábeli, Rodrigo G.; Soares, Andreimar M.

    2014-01-01

    For more than half a century, cytotoxic agents have been investigated as a possible treatment for cancer. Research on animal venoms has revealed their high toxicity on tissues and cell cultures, both normal and tumoral. Snake venoms show the highest cytotoxic potential, since ophidian accidents cause a large amount of tissue damage, suggesting a promising utilization of these venoms or their components as antitumoral agents. Over the last few years, we have studied the effects of snake venoms and their isolated enzymes on tumor cell cultures. Some in vivo assays showed antineoplastic activity against induced tumors in mice. In human beings, both the crude venom and isolated enzymes revealed antitumor activities in preliminary assays, with measurable clinical responses in the advanced treatment phase. These enzymes include metalloproteases (MP), disintegrins, L-amino acid oxidases (LAAOs), C-type lectins, and phospholipases A2 (PLA2s). Their mechanisms of action include direct toxic action (PLA2s), free radical generation (LAAOs), apoptosis induction (PLA2s, MP, and LAAOs), and antiangiogenesis (disintegrins and lectins). Higher cytotoxic and cytostatic activities upon tumor cells than normal cells suggest the possibility for clinical applications. Further studies should be conducted to ensure the efficacy and safety of different snake venom compounds for cancer drug development. PMID:24683541

  14. Partial Purification and Characterization of Anticoagulant Factor from the Snake (Echis Carinatus) Venom

    PubMed Central

    Amrollahi Byoki, Elham; Zare Mirakabadi, Abbas

    2013-01-01

    Objective(s): Snake venoms contain complex mixture of proteins with biological activities. Some of these proteins affect blood coagulation and platelet function in different ways. Snake venom toxin may serve as a starting material for drug design to combat several pathophysiological problems such as cardiovascular disorders. In the present study, purification of anticoagulation factor from venom of snake (Echis carinatus) was studied. Materials and Methods: Anticoagulation activity of crude venom, fractions and purified peptide were determined by using prothrombin time (PT) and thrombin time (TT). Three fractions were partially purified from the venom of E. Carinatus by gel filtration on sephadex G-75 and final purification was performed by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) with C18 column. A purified anticoagulant factor was derived which showed a single protein band in SDS-PAGE electrophoresis under reducing condition. Results: Results of PT and TT tests for purified peptide (EC217) were found to be 102±4.242 and < 5 min. respectively. Determination of molecular weight revealed that the active purified peptide (EC217) was about 30 KD. Conclusion: The present study showed that the venom of E. carinatus contains at least one anticoagulant factor. PMID:24494065

  15. The venom-gland transcriptome of the eastern coral snake (Micrurus fulvius) reveals high venom complexity in the intragenomic evolution of venoms

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Snake venom is shaped by the ecology and evolution of venomous species, and signals of positive selection in toxins have been consistently documented, reflecting the role of venoms as an ecologically critical phenotype. New World coral snakes (Elapidae) are represented by three genera and over 120 species and subspecies that are capable of causing significant human morbidity and mortality, yet coral-snake venom composition is poorly understood in comparison to that of Old World elapids. High-throughput sequencing is capable of identifying thousands of loci, while providing characterizations of expression patterns and the molecular evolutionary forces acting within the venom gland. Results We describe the de novo assembly and analysis of the venom-gland transcriptome of the eastern coral snake (Micrurus fulvius). We identified 1,950 nontoxin transcripts and 116 toxin transcripts. These transcripts accounted for 57.1% of the total reads, with toxins accounting for 45.8% of the total reads. Phospholipases A2 and three-finger toxins dominated expression, accounting for 86.0% of the toxin reads. A total of 15 toxin families were identified, revealing venom complexity previously unknown from New World coral snakes. Toxins exhibited high levels of heterozygosity relative to nontoxins, and overdominance may favor gene duplication leading to the fixation of advantageous alleles. Phospholipase A2 expression was uniformly distributed throughout the class while three-finger toxin expression was dominated by a handful of transcripts, and phylogenetic analyses indicate that toxin divergence may have occurred following speciation. Positive selection was detected in three of the four most diverse toxin classes, suggesting that venom diversification is driven by recurrent directional selection. Conclusions We describe the most complete characterization of an elapid venom gland to date. Toxin gene duplication may be driven by heterozygote advantage, as the frequency of

  16. [Fibrinogen/fibrin-specific enzymes from copperhead (Agkistrodon halys halys) and cobra (Naja oxiana eichwald) snake venoms].

    PubMed

    Yunusova, E S; Sadykov, E S; Sultanalieva, N M; Shkinev, A V

    2016-03-01

    Ability of fractions of cobra's (Naja oxiana Eichwald) and copperhead snake's (Agkistrodon halys halys) venoms to hydrolyze fibrinogen/fibrin was studied. In cobra's snake a component with molecular mass of nearly 60 kDa was found to hydrolyze a-chain of fibrinogen but failed to hydrolyze casein/azocasein and fibrin. A fibrinogen-specific metalloproteinase, the enzyme was inhibited by EDTA. Cobra's venom reduced the mass of donor's fresh blood clots. The copperhead snake's venom and the fractions obtained by gel-filtration (HW-50) and ion exchange chromatography (DEAE-650) were found to hydrolyze casein/azocasein, a- and b-chains of fibrinogen/fibrin and donor's blood clots. The results from the study of the venom and proteolytically active fractions are the evidence for a thrombolytic potential in a copperhead snake's venom. PMID:27420616

  17. Expression pattern of three-finger toxin and phospholipase A2 genes in the venom glands of two sea snakes, Lapemis curtus and Acalyptophis peronii: comparison of evolution of these toxins in land snakes, sea kraits and sea snakes

    PubMed Central

    Pahari, Susanta; Bickford, David; Fry, Bryan G; Kini, R Manjunatha

    2007-01-01

    Background Snake venom composition varies widely both among closely related species and within the same species, based on ecological variables. In terrestrial snakes, such variation has been proposed to be due to snakes' diet. Land snakes target various prey species including insects (arthropods), lizards (reptiles), frogs and toads (amphibians), birds (aves), and rodents (mammals), whereas sea snakes target a single vertebrate class (fishes) and often specialize on specific types of fish. It is therefore interesting to examine the evolution of toxins in sea snake venoms compared to that of land snakes. Results Here we describe the expression of toxin genes in the venom glands of two sea snakes, Lapemis curtus (Spine-bellied Sea Snake) and Acalyptophis peronii (Horned Sea Snake), two members of a large adaptive radiation which occupy very different ecological niches. We constructed cDNA libraries from their venom glands and sequenced 214 and 192 clones, respectively. Our data show that despite their explosive evolutionary radiation, there is very little variability in the three-finger toxin (3FTx) as well as the phospholipase A2 (PLA2) enzymes, the two main constituents of Lapemis curtus and Acalyptophis peronii venom. To understand the evolutionary trends among land snakes, sea snakes and sea kraits, pairwise genetic distances (intraspecific and interspecific) of 3FTx and PLA2 sequences were calculated. Results show that these proteins appear to be highly conserved in sea snakes in contrast to land snakes or sea kraits, despite their extremely divergent and adaptive ecological radiation. Conclusion Based on these results, we suggest that streamlining in habitat and diet in sea snakes has possibly kept their toxin genes conserved, suggesting the idea that prey composition and diet breadth may contribute to the diversity and evolution of venom components. PMID:17900344

  18. Evaluation of cytotoxic activities of snake venoms toward breast (MCF-7) and skin cancer (A-375) cell lines.

    PubMed

    Bradshaw, Michael J; Saviola, Anthony J; Fesler, Elizabeth; Mackessy, Stephen P

    2016-08-01

    Snake venoms are mixtures of bioactive proteins and peptides that exhibit diverse biochemical activities. This wide array of pharmacologies associated with snake venoms has made them attractive sources for research into potentially novel therapeutics, and several venom-derived drugs are now in use. In the current study we performed a broad screen of a variety of venoms (61 taxa) from the major venomous snake families (Viperidae, Elapidae and "Colubridae") in order to examine cytotoxic effects toward MCF-7 breast cancer cells and A-375 melanoma cells. MTT cell viability assays of cancer cells incubated with crude venoms revealed that most venoms showed significant cytotoxicity. We further investigated venom from the Red-bellied Blacksnake (Pseudechis porphyriacus); venom was fractionated by ion exchange fast protein liquid chromatography and several cytotoxic components were isolated. SDS-PAGE and MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry were used to identify the compounds in this venom responsible for the cytotoxic effects. In general, viper venoms were potently cytotoxic, with MCF-7 cells showing greater sensitivity, while elapid and colubrid venoms were much less toxic; notable exceptions included the elapid genera Micrurus, Naja and Pseudechis, which were quite cytotoxic to both cell lines. However, venoms with the most potent cytotoxicity were often not those with low mouse LD50s, including some dangerously venomous viperids and Australian elapids. This study confirmed that many venoms contain cytotoxic compounds, including catalytic PLA2s, and several venoms also showed significant differential toxicity toward the two cancer cell lines. Our results indicate that several previously uncharacterized venoms could contain promising lead compounds for drug development.

  19. Bothrops pauloensis snake venom toxins: the search for new therapeutic models.

    PubMed

    Rodrigues, Veridiana M; Lopes, Daiana S; Castanheira, Leticia E; Gimenes, Sarah N C; Naves de Souza, Dayane L; Ache, David C; Borges, Isabela P; Yoneyama, Kelly A G; Rodrigues, Renata S

    2015-01-01

    Snake venoms constitute a mixture of bioactive components that are involved not only in envenomation pathophysiology but also in the development of new drugs to treat many diseases. Different enzymatic and non-enzymatic proteins, such as phospholipases A2, hyaluronidases, L-amino acid oxidases, metalloproteinases, serine proteinases, lectins and disintegrins have been isolated and their functional and structural properties described in the literature. Many of these studies have also explored their medicinal potential focusing mainly on anticancer, antithrombotic and microbicide therapies. Bothrops pauloensis is a species found in Brazil, whose venom has been the focus of our studies in order to explore the biochemical and functional characteristics of their components. In this review, we have presented the main results of years of research on different toxins from B. pauloensis emphasizing their therapeutic potential. Studies concerning snake venom toxins to search for new therapeutic models open perspectives for new drug discovery.

  20. Snake venom phospholipase A2 inhibitors: medicinal chemistry and therapeutic potential.

    PubMed

    Marcussi, Silvana; Sant'Ana, Carolina D; Oliveira, Clayton Z; Rueda, Aristides Quintero; Menaldo, Danilo L; Beleboni, Rene O; Stabeli, Rodrigo G; Giglio, José R; Fontes, Marcos R M; Soares, Andreimar M

    2007-01-01

    Phospholipases A2 (PLA2s) are commonly found in snake venoms from Viperidae, Hydrophidae and Elaphidae families and have been extensively studied due to their pharmacological and physiopathological effects in living organisms. This article reports a review on natural and artificial inhibitors of enzymatic, toxic and pharmacological effects induced by snake venom PLA2s. These inhibitors act on PLA2s through different mechanisms, most of them still not completely understood, including binding to specific domains, denaturation, modification of specific amino acid residues and others. Several substances have been evaluated regarding their effects against snake venoms and isolated toxins, including plant extracts and compounds from marine animals, mammals and snakes serum plasma, in addition to poly or monoclonal antibodies and several synthetic molecules. Research involving these inhibitors may be useful to understand the mechanism of action of PLA2s and their role in envenomations caused by snake bite. Furthermore, the biotechnological potential of PLA2 inhibitors may provide therapeutic molecular models with antiophidian activity to supplement the conventional serum therapy against these multifunctional enzymes. PMID:17456038

  1. Interrogating the Venom of the Viperid Snake Sistrurus catenatus edwardsii by a Combined Approach of Electrospray and MALDI Mass Spectrometry

    PubMed Central

    Chapeaurouge, Alex; Reza, Md Abu; Mackessy, Stephen P.; Carvalho, Paulo C.; Valente, Richard H.; Teixeira-Ferreira, André; Perales, Jonas; Lin, Qingsong; Kini, R. Manjunatha

    2015-01-01

    The complete sequence characterization of snake venom proteins by mass spectrometry is rather challenging due to the presence of multiple isoforms from different protein families. In the present study, we investigated the tryptic digest of the venom of the viperid snake Sistrurus catenatus edwardsii by a combined approach of liquid chromatography coupled to either electrospray (online) or MALDI (offline) mass spectrometry. These different ionization techniques proved to be complementary allowing the identification a great variety of isoforms of diverse snake venom protein families, as evidenced by the detection of the corresponding unique peptides. For example, ten out of eleven predicted isoforms of serine proteinases of the venom of S. c. edwardsii were distinguished using this approach. Moreover, snake venom protein families not encountered in a previous transcriptome study of the venom gland of this snake were identified. In essence, our results support the notion that complementary ionization techniques of mass spectrometry allow for the detection of even subtle sequence differences of snake venom proteins, which is fundamental for future structure-function relationship and possible drug design studies. PMID:25955844

  2. Maintaining Coral Snakes (Micrurus nigrocinctus, Serpentes: Elapidae) for venom production on an alternative fish-based diet.

    PubMed

    Chacón, Danilo; Rodríguez, Santos; Arias, Jazmín; Solano, Gabriela; Bonilla, Fabián; Gómez, Aarón

    2012-09-01

    American Elapid snakes (Coral Snakes) comprise the genera Leptomicrurus, Micruroides and Micrurus, which form a vast taxonomic assembly of 330 species distributed from the South of United States to the southern region of South America. In order to obtain venom for animal immunizations aimed at antivenom production, Coral Snakes must be kept in captivity and submitted periodically to venom extraction procedures. Thus, to maintain a snake colony in good health for this purpose, a complete alternative diet utilizing an easily obtained prey animal is desirable. The development of a diet based on fish is compared to the wild diet based on colubrid snakes, and assessed in terms of gain in body weight rate (g/week), longevity (weeks), venom yield (mg/individual), venom median lethal dose (LD₅₀) and venom chromatographic profiles. The animals fed with the fish-based diet gained more weight, lived longer, and produced similar amount of venom whose biological and biochemical characteristics were similar to those of venom collected from specimens fed with the wild diet. This fish-based diet appears to be suitable (and preferable to the wild diet) to supply the nutritional requirements of a Micrurus nigrocinctus snake collection for the production of antivenom.

  3. Prey specificity, comparative lethality and compositional differences of coral snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Jorge da Silva, N; Aird, S D

    2001-03-01

    Toxicities of crude venoms from 49 coral snake (Micrurus sp.) populations, representing 15 nominal taxa, were examined in both laboratory mice and in native prey animals and compared with data gathered from two non-micrurine elapids and a crotalid, which served as outgroups. These venoms were further compared on the basis of 23 enzymatic activities. Both toxicities and enzymatic activities were analyzed with respect to natural prey preferences, as determined from stomach content analyses and literature reports. Venoms of nearly all Micrurus for which prey preferences are known, are more toxic to natural prey than to non-prey species. Except for amphisbaenians, prey are more susceptible to venoms of Micrurus that feed upon them, than to venoms of those that eat other organisms. All venoms were more toxic i.v.>i.p.>i.m. Route-specific differences in toxicity are generally greatest for preferred prey species. Cluster analyses of venom enzymatic activities resulted in five clusters, with the fish-eating M. surinamensis more distant from other Micrurus than even the crotalid, Bothrops moojeni. Ophiophagous and amphisbaenian-eating Micrurus formed two close subclusters, one allied to the outgroup species Naja naja and the other to the fossorial, ophiophagous Bungarus multicinctus. Prey preference is shown to be the most important determinant of venom composition in Micrurus.

  4. Snake venom causes apoptosis by increasing the reactive oxygen species in colorectal and breast cancer cell lines

    PubMed Central

    Al-Asmari, Abdulrahman Khazim; Riyasdeen, Anvarbatcha; Al-Shahrani, Mohammad Hamed; Islam, Mozaffarul

    2016-01-01

    Snake venom possesses various kinds of proteins and neurotoxic polypeptides, which can negatively interfere with the neurotransmitter signaling cascade. This phenomenon occurs mainly due to the blocking of ion channels in the body system. Envenomation prevents or severely interrupts nerve impulses from being transmitted, inhibition of adenosine triphosphate synthesis, and proper functioning of the cardiac muscles. However, some beneficial properties of venoms have also been reported. The aim of this study was to examine the snake venom as an anticancer agent due to its inhibitory effects on cancer progression such as cell motility, cell invasion, and colony formation. In this study, the effect of venoms on phenotypic changes and the change on molecular level in colorectal and breast cancer cell lines were examined. A reduction of 60%–90% in cell motility, colony formation, and cell invasion was observed when these cell lines were treated with different concentrations of snake venom. In addition, the increase in oxidative stress that results in an increase in the number of apoptotic cancer cells was significantly higher in the venom-treated cell lines. Further analysis showed that there was a decrease in the expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines and signaling proteins, strongly suggesting a promising role for snake venom against breast and colorectal cancer cell progression. In conclusion, the snake venoms used in this study showed significant anticancer properties against colorectal and breast cancer cell lines. PMID:27799796

  5. Snake venom galactoside-binding lectins: a structural and functional overview.

    PubMed

    Sartim, Marco A; Sampaio, Suely V

    2015-01-01

    Snake venom galactoside-binding lectins (SVgalLs) comprise a class of toxins capable of recognizing and interacting with terminal galactoside residues of glycans. In the past 35 years, since the first report on the purification of thrombolectin from Bothrops atrox snake venom, several SVgalLs from Viperidae and Elapidae snake families have been described, as has progressive improvement in the investigation of structural/functional aspects of these lectins. Moreover, the advances of techniques applied in protein-carbohydrate recognition have provided important approaches in order to screen for possible biological targets. The present review describes the efforts over the past 35 years to elucidate SVgalLs, highlighting their structure and carbohydrate recognition function involved in envenomation pathophysiology and potential biomedical applications. PMID:26413085

  6. Comparison of venoms from wild and long-term captive Bothrops atrox snakes and characterization of Batroxrhagin, the predominant class PIII metalloproteinase from the venom of this species.

    PubMed

    Freitas-de-Sousa, L A; Amazonas, D R; Sousa, L F; Sant'Anna, S S; Nishiyama, M Y; Serrano, S M T; Junqueira-de-Azevedo, I L M; Chalkidis, H M; Moura-da-Silva, A M; Mourão, R H V

    2015-11-01

    Comparisons between venoms from snakes kept under captivity or collected at the natural environment are of fundamental importance in order to obtain effective antivenoms to treat human victims of snakebites. In this study, we compared composition and biological activities of Bothrops atrox venom from snakes collected at Tapajós National Forest (Pará State, Brazil) or maintained for more than 10 years under captivity at Instituto Butantan herpetarium after have been collected mostly at Maranhão State, Brazil. Venoms from captive or wild snakes were similar except for small quantitative differences detected in peaks correspondent to phospholipases A2 (PLA2), snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMP) class PI and serine proteinases (SVSP), which did not correlate with fibrinolytic and coagulant activities (induced by PI-SVMPs and SVSPs). In both pools, the major toxic component corresponded to PIII-SVMPs, which were isolated and characterized. The characterization by mass spectrometry of both samples identified peptides that matched with a single PIII-SVMP cDNA characterized by transcriptomics, named Batroxrhagin. Sequence alignments show a strong similarity between Batroxrhagin and Jararhagin (96%). Batroxrhagin samples isolated from venoms of wild or captive snakes were not pro-coagulant, but inhibited collagen-induced platelet-aggregation, and induced hemorrhage and fibrin lysis with similar doses. Results suggest that in spite of environmental differences, venom variability was detected only among the less abundant components. In opposition, the most abundant toxin, which is a PIII-SVMP related to the key effects of the venom, is structurally conserved in the venoms. This observation is relevant for explaining the efficacy of antivenoms produced with venoms from captive snakes in human accidents inflicted at distinct natural environments. PMID:26276061

  7. Comparison of venoms from wild and long-term captive Bothrops atrox snakes and characterization of Batroxrhagin, the predominant class PIII metalloproteinase from the venom of this species.

    PubMed

    Freitas-de-Sousa, L A; Amazonas, D R; Sousa, L F; Sant'Anna, S S; Nishiyama, M Y; Serrano, S M T; Junqueira-de-Azevedo, I L M; Chalkidis, H M; Moura-da-Silva, A M; Mourão, R H V

    2015-11-01

    Comparisons between venoms from snakes kept under captivity or collected at the natural environment are of fundamental importance in order to obtain effective antivenoms to treat human victims of snakebites. In this study, we compared composition and biological activities of Bothrops atrox venom from snakes collected at Tapajós National Forest (Pará State, Brazil) or maintained for more than 10 years under captivity at Instituto Butantan herpetarium after have been collected mostly at Maranhão State, Brazil. Venoms from captive or wild snakes were similar except for small quantitative differences detected in peaks correspondent to phospholipases A2 (PLA2), snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMP) class PI and serine proteinases (SVSP), which did not correlate with fibrinolytic and coagulant activities (induced by PI-SVMPs and SVSPs). In both pools, the major toxic component corresponded to PIII-SVMPs, which were isolated and characterized. The characterization by mass spectrometry of both samples identified peptides that matched with a single PIII-SVMP cDNA characterized by transcriptomics, named Batroxrhagin. Sequence alignments show a strong similarity between Batroxrhagin and Jararhagin (96%). Batroxrhagin samples isolated from venoms of wild or captive snakes were not pro-coagulant, but inhibited collagen-induced platelet-aggregation, and induced hemorrhage and fibrin lysis with similar doses. Results suggest that in spite of environmental differences, venom variability was detected only among the less abundant components. In opposition, the most abundant toxin, which is a PIII-SVMP related to the key effects of the venom, is structurally conserved in the venoms. This observation is relevant for explaining the efficacy of antivenoms produced with venoms from captive snakes in human accidents inflicted at distinct natural environments.

  8. Epithelium specific ETS transcription factor, ESE-3, of Protobothrops flavoviridis snake venom gland transactivates the promoters of venom phospholipase A2 isozyme genes.

    PubMed

    Nakamura, Hitomi; Murakami, Tatsuo; Hattori, Shosaku; Sakaki, Yoshiyuki; Ohkuri, Takatoshi; Chijiwa, Takahito; Ohno, Motonori; Oda-Ueda, Naoko

    2014-12-15

    Protobothrops flavoviridis (habu) (Crotalinae, Viperidae) is a Japanese venomous snake, and its venom contains the enzymes with a variety of physiological activities. The phospholipases A2 (PLA2s) are the major components and exert various toxic effects. They are expressed abundantly in the venom gland. It is thought that the venom gland-specific transcription factors play a key role for activation of PLA2 genes specifically expressed in the venom gland. Thus, the full-length cDNA library for P. flavoviridis venom gland after milking of the venom was made to explore the transcription factors therein. As a result, three cDNAs encoding epithelium-specific ETS transcription factors (ESE)-1, -2, and -3 were obtained. Among them, ESE-3 was specifically expressed in the venom gland and activated the proximal promoters of venom PLA2 genes, which are possibly regarded as the representatives of the venom gland-specific protein genes in P. flavoviridis. Interestingly, the binding specificity of ESE-3 to the ETS binding motif located near TATA box is well correlated with transcriptional activities for the venom PLA2 genes. This is the first report that venom gland-specific transcription factor could actually activate the promoters of the venom protein genes.

  9. Action of Micrurus dumerilii carinicauda coral snake venom on the mammalian neuromuscular junction.

    PubMed

    Serafim, Francine G; Reali, Marielga; Cruz-Höfling, Maria Alice; Fontana, Marcos D

    2002-02-01

    The venoms of coral snakes (mainly Micrurus species) have pre- and/or postsynaptic actions, but only a few of these have been studied in detail. We have investigated the effects of Micrurus dumerilii carinicauda coral snake venom on neurotransmission in rat isolated phrenic nerve-diaphragm muscle and chick biventer cervicis preparations stimulated directly or indirectly. M. d. carinicauda venom (5 or 10 microg/ml) produced neuromuscular blockade in rat (85-90% in 291.8+/-7.3 min and 108.3+/-13.8, respectively; n=5) and avian (95.0+/-2.0 min; 5 microg/ml, n=5) preparations. Neostigmine (5.8 microM) and 3,4-diaminopyridine (230 microM) partially reversed the venom-induced neuromuscular blockade in rat nerve-muscle preparations. In neither preparation did the venom depress the twitch response elicited by direct muscle stimulation. The contractures induced by acetylcholine in chick preparations were inhibited by the venom (95-100%; n=4; p<0.05). In rat preparations, the venom produced a progressive decrease in the amplitude of miniature end-plate potentials (m.e.p.ps control frequency=69.3+/-5.0/min and control amplitude=0.4+/-0.2 mV) until these were abolished. Neostigmine (5.8 microM) and 3,4-diaminopyridine (230 microM) partially antagonized this blockade of m.e.p.ps. The resting membrane potential was not altered with the venom (10 microg/ml). M. d. carinicauda venom produced dose-dependent morphological changes in indirectly stimulated mammal preparations. Twenty-five per cent of muscle fibers were affected by a venom concentration of 5 microg/ml, whilst 60.7% were damaged by 10 microg of venom/ml. In biventer cervicis preparations, the morphological changes were slower in onset and were generally characterized by undulating fibers and, to a lesser extent, by zones of disintegrating myofibrils. A venom concentration of 5 microg/ml damaged 52.2% of the fibers. These findings indicate that M. d. carinicauda venom has neurotoxic and myotoxic effects and that the

  10. Molecular docking studies and anti-snake venom metalloproteinase activity of Thai mango seed kernel extract.

    PubMed

    Pithayanukul, Pimolpan; Leanpolchareanchai, Jiraporn; Saparpakorn, Patchreenart

    2009-08-27

    Snakebite envenomations cause severe local tissue necrosis and the venom metalloproteinases are thought to be the key toxins involved. In this study, the ethanolic extract from seed kernels of Thai mango (Mangifera indica L. cv. 'Fahlun') (Anacardiaceae) and its major phenolic principle (pentagalloylglucopyranose) exhibited potent and dose-dependent inhibitory effects on the caseinolytic and fibrinogenolytic activities of Malayan pit viper and Thai cobra venoms in in vitro tests. molecular docking studies revealed that the binding orientations of the phenolic principles were in the binding pockets of snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs). The phenolic principles could form hydrogen bonds with the three histidine residues in the conserved zinc-binding motif and could chelate the Zn(2+) atom of the SVMPs, which could potentially result in inhibition of the venom enzymatic activities and thereby inhibit tissue necrosis.

  11. Diversity of Micrurus Snake Species Related to Their Venom Toxic Effects and the Prospective of Antivenom Neutralization

    PubMed Central

    Tanaka, Gabriela D.; Furtado, Maria de Fátima D.; Portaro, Fernanda C. V.; Sant'Anna, Osvaldo Augusto; Tambourgi, Denise V.

    2010-01-01

    Background Micrurus snake bites can cause death by muscle paralysis and respiratory arrest, few hours after envenomation. The specific treatment for coral snake envenomation is the intravenous application of heterologous antivenom and, in Brazil, it is produced by horse immunization with a mixture of M. corallinus and M. frontalis venoms, snakes that inhabit the South and Southeastern regions of the country. However, this antivenom might be inefficient, considering the existence of intra- and inter-specific variations in the composition of the venoms. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to investigate the toxic properties of venoms from nine species of Micrurus: eight present in different geographic regions of Brazil (M. frontalis, M. corallinus, M. hemprichii, M. spixii, M. altirostris, M. surinamensis, M. ibiboboca, M. lemniscatus) and one (M. fulvius) with large distribution in Southeastern United States and Mexico. This study also analyzed the antigenic cross-reactivity and the neutralizing potential of the Brazilian coral snake antivenom against these Micrurus venoms. Methodology/Principal Findings Analysis of protein composition and toxicity revealed a large diversity of venoms from the nine Micrurus species. ELISA and Western blot assays showed a varied capability of the therapeutic antivenom to recognize the diverse species venom components. In vivo and in vitro neutralization assays indicated that the antivenom is not able to fully neutralize the toxic activities of all venoms. Conclusion These results indicate the existence of a large range of both qualitative and quantitative variations in Micrurus venoms, probably reflecting the adaptation of the snakes from this genus to vastly dissimilar habitats. The data also show that the antivenom used for human therapy in Brazil is not fully able to neutralize the main toxic activities present in the venoms from all Micrurus species occurring in the country. It suggests that modifications in the

  12. Coagulant effects of black snake (Pseudechis spp.) venoms and in vitro efficacy of commercial antivenom.

    PubMed

    Lane, J; O'Leary, M A; Isbister, G K

    2011-09-01

    The coagulant effects of Australasian black snakes (Pseudechis spp.) are poorly understood and differ to the procoagulant venoms of most dangerous snakes in Australia. This study aimed to investigate in vitro coagulant effects of Pseudechis venoms and the efficacy of commercial black snake antivenom (BlSAV), tiger snake antivenom (TSAV) and specific rabbit anti-snake IgG to neutralise these effects. Using a turbidimetric assay, all six Pseudechis venoms had anticoagulant activity, as well as phospholipase A(2) (PLA(2)) activity. Inhibition of PLA(2) activity removed anticoagulant effects of the venoms. Pseudechis porphyriacus was unique and had procoagulant activity independent of PLA2 activity. Both BlSAV and TSAV completely inhibited the coagulant and PLA2 activity of all Pseudechis venoms. PLA2 activity was also inhibited completely by p-Bromophenacyl bromide (pBPB) and partially by specific anti-N. scutatus IgG antibodies. Anti-N. scutatus IgG also completely inhibited anticoagulant activity of Pseudechis venom. All Pseudechis venoms showed immunological cross reactivity with specific anti-snake IgG antibodies to P. porphyriacus, Pseudechis australis and Notechis scutatus. Pseudechis venoms have in vitro anticoagulant activity that appears to be attributable to PLA(2) activity. Both antivenoms inhibited anticoagulant and PLA(2) activity at concentrations below those occurring in patients treated with one vial of antivenom. There was cross-neutralisation of Pseudechis venoms and N. scutatus antibodies that might be attributable to immunological similarities between the venoms. PMID:21723878

  13. A novel fibrinogenase from Agkistrodon acutus venom protects against DIC via direct degradation of thrombosis and activation of protein C.

    PubMed

    Qi, Jie-zhen; Lin, Xi; Chen, Jia-shu; Huang, Zhen-hua; Qiu, Bi-tao; Qiu, Peng-xin; Yan, Guang-mei

    2012-10-01

    The incidence of disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC), which leads to multiple organ dysfunction and high mortality, has remained constant in recent years. At present, treatments of DIC have focused on preventing cytokine induction, inhibiting coagulation processes and promoting fibrinolysis. Recent clinical trials have supported the use of antithrombin and activated protein C supplementation in DIC. To better understand the mechanism of treatment on DIC, we here report a novel fibrinogenase from Agkistrodon acutus (FIIa) that effectively protected against LPS-induced DIC in a rabbit model, and detected the tissue factors expression in HUVE cells after using FIIa. In vivo, administration of FIIa reduced hepatic and renal damage, increased the concentration of fibrinogen, the activities of protein C, the platelet count, APTT, PT, FDP, the level of AT-III and t-PA, decreased the level of PAI-1, and increased survival rate in LPS-induced DIC rabbits. In vitro experiments, we further confirmed that FIIa up-regulated the expression of t-PA and u-PA, down-regulated the expression of PAI-1, and directly activated protein C. Our findings suggest that FIIa could effectively protect against DIC via direct degradation of microthrombi and activation of protein C as well as provide a novel strategy to develop a single proteinase molecule for targeting the main pathological processes of this disease. PMID:22728069

  14. Disintegrins from Snake Venoms and their Applications in Cancer 
Research and Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Macêdo, Jéssica Kele Arruda; Fox, Jay W.; Castro, Mariana de Souza

    2015-01-01

    Integrins regulate diverse functions in cancer pathology and in tumor cell development and contribute to important processes such as cell shape, survival, proliferation, transcription, angiogenesis, migration, and invasion. A number of snake venom proteins have the ability to interact with integrins. Among these are the disintegrins, a family of small, non-enzymatic, and cysteine-rich proteins found in the venom of numerous snake families. The venom proteins may have a potential role in terms of novel therapeutic leads for cancer treatment. Disintegrin can target specific integrins and as such it is conceivable that they could interfere in important processes involved in carcinogenesis, tumor growth, invasion and migration. Herein we present a survey of studies involving the use of snake venom disintegrins for cancer detection and treatment. The aim of this review is to highlight the relationship of integrins with cancer and to present examples as to how certain disintegrins can detect and affect biological processes related to cancer. This in turn will illustrate the great potential of these molecules for cancer research. Furthermore, we also outline several new approaches being created to address problems commonly associated with the clinical application of peptide-based drugs such as instability, immunogenicity, and availability. PMID:26031306

  15. The anti-snake venom properties of Tamarindus indica (leguminosae) seed extract.

    PubMed

    Ushanandini, S; Nagaraju, S; Harish Kumar, K; Vedavathi, M; Machiah, D K; Kemparaju, K; Vishwanath, B S; Gowda, T V; Girish, K S

    2006-10-01

    In Indian traditional medicine, various plants have been used widely as a remedy for treating snake bites. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of Tamarindus indica seed extract on the pharmacological as well as the enzymatic effects induced by V. russelli venom. Tamarind seed extract inhibited the PLA(2), protease, hyaluronidase, l-amino acid oxidase and 5'-nucleotidase enzyme activities of venom in a dose-dependent manner. These are the major hydrolytic enzymes responsible for the early effects of envenomation, such as local tissue damage, inflammation and hypotension. Furthermore, the extract neutralized the degradation of the Bbeta chain of human fibrinogen and indirect hemolysis caused by venom. It was also observed that the extract exerted a moderate effect on the clotting time, prolonging it only to a small extent. Edema, hemorrhage and myotoxic effects including lethality, induced by venom were neutralized significantly when different doses of the extract were preincubated with venom before the assays. On the other hand, animals that received extract 10 min after the injection of venom were protected from venom induced toxicity. Since it inhibits hydrolytic enzymes and pharmacological effects, it may be used as an alternative treatment to serum therapy and, in addition, as a rich source of potential inhibitors of PLA(2), metalloproteinases, serine proteases, hyaluronidases and 5 cent-nucleotidases, the enzymes involved in several physiopathological human and animal diseases.

  16. Development of immunoassays for determination of circulating venom antigens during envenomations by coral snakes (Micrurus species).

    PubMed

    Amuy, E; Alape-Girón, A; Lomonte, B; Thelestam, M; Gutiérrez, J M

    1997-11-01

    A reverse agglutination assay and two capture enzyme-linked immunoassays (ELISAs) for the quantitative determination of Micrurus nigrocinctus nigrocinctus venom antigens in fluids were developed using affinity-purified polyclonal antibodies and a cocktail of three monoclonal antibodies. The lower detection limit was 0.3 mg/ml for the reverse agglutination assay and 4 ng/ml for the capture ELISAs. The optical densities of both ELISAs correlated very well with venom concentrations in the range 4-333 ng/ml (r = 0.99). The ability of these assays to detect venoms of several medically important Micrurus species was studied. Besides detecting homologous venom, both ELISAs were also useful to quantitate venom from M. fulvius, M. dumerilii carinicauda and M. alleni. Using biotinylated polyclonal antibodies, M. n. nigrocinctus venom antigens were detected in sera or plasma from rabbits and mice during experimental envenomations with lethal and sublethal venom doses. The assays described in this work are promising tests to estimate the severity of poisoning in envenomations by the most important coral snakes of North and Central America.

  17. Venomic and antivenomic analyses of the Central American coral snake, Micrurus nigrocinctus (Elapidae).

    PubMed

    Fernández, Julián; Alape-Girón, Alberto; Angulo, Yamileth; Sanz, Libia; Gutiérrez, José María; Calvete, Juan J; Lomonte, Bruno

    2011-04-01

    The proteome of the venom of Micrurus nigrocinctus (Central American coral snake) was analyzed by a "venomics" approach. Nearly 50 venom peaks were resolved by RP-HPLC, revealing a complex protein composition. Comparative analyses of venoms from individual specimens revealed that such complexity is an intrinsic feature of this species, rather than the sum of variable individual patterns of simpler composition. Proteins related to eight distinct families were identified by MS/MS de novo peptide sequencing or N-terminal sequencing: phospholipase A(2) (PLA(2)), three-finger toxin (3FTx), l-amino acid oxidase, C-type lectin/lectin-like, metalloproteinase, serine proteinase, ohanin, and nucleotidase. PLA(2)s and 3FTxs are predominant, representing 48 and 38% of the venom proteins, respectively. Within 3FTxs, several isoforms of short-chain α-neurotoxins as well as muscarinic-like toxins and proteins with similarity to long-chain κ-2 bungarotoxin were identified. PLA(2)s are also highly diverse, and a toxicity screening showed that they mainly exert myotoxicity, although some are lethal and may contribute to the known presynaptic neurotoxicity of this venom. An antivenomic characterization of a therapeutic monospecific M. nigrocinctus equine antivenom revealed differences in immunorecognition of venom proteins that correlate with their molecular mass, with the weakest recognition observed toward 3FTxs.

  18. Screening of Bothrops snake venoms for L-amino acid oxidase activity

    SciTech Connect

    Pessati, M.L.; Fontana, J.D.; Guimaraes, M.F.

    1995-12-31

    Toxins, enzymes, and biologically active peptides are the main components of snake venoms from the genus Bothrops. Following the venom inoculation, the local effects are hemorrhage, edema, and myonecrosis. Nineteen different species of Brazilian Bothrops were screened for protein content and L-amino acid oxidase activity. B. cotiara, formerly found in the South of Brazil, is now threatened with extinction. Its venom contains a highly hemorrhagic fraction and, as expected from the deep yellow color of the corresponding lyophilized powder, a high L-amino acid oxidase (LAO) activity was also characterized. Flavin adenine dinucleotide (FAD) is its associate coenzyme. B. cotiara venom LAO catalyzed the oxidative deamination of several L-amino acids, and the best substrates were methionine, leucine, tryptophan, and phenylalanine, hence, its potential application for the use in biosensors for aspartame determination and for the removal of amino acids from plasma. High levels for LAO were also found in other species than B. cotiara. In addition, the technique of isoelectric focusing (IEF) was employed as a powerful tool to study the iso- or multi-enzyme distribution for LAO activity in the B. cotiara snake venom.

  19. Screening of Bothrops snake venoms for L-amino acid oxidase activity.

    PubMed

    Pessatti, M; Fontana, J D; Furtado, M F; Guimãraes, M F; Zanette, L R; Costa, W T; Baron, M

    1995-01-01

    Toxins, enzymes, and biologically active peptides are the main components of snake venoms from the genus Bothrops. Following the venom inoculation, the local effects are hemorrhage, edema, and myonecrosis. Nineteen different species of Brazilian Bothrops were screened for protein content and L-amino acid oxidase activity. B. cotiara, formerly found in the South of Brazil, is now threatened with extinction. Its venom contains a highly hemorrhagic fraction and, as expected from the deep yellow color of the corresponding lyophilized powder, a high L-amino acid oxidase (LAO) activity was also characterized. Flavin adenine dinucleotide (FAD) is its associate coenzyme. B. cotiara venom LAO catalyzed the oxidative deamination of several L-amino acids, and the best substrates were methionine, leucine, tryptophan, and phenylalanine, hence, its potential application for the use of biosensors for aspartame determination and for the removal of amino acids from plasma. High levels for LAO were also found in other species than B. cotiara. In addition, the technique of isoelectric focusing (IEF) was employed as a powerful tool to study the iso- or multi-enzyme distribution for LAO activity in the B. cotiara snake venom.

  20. Post-transcriptional Mechanisms Contribute Little to Phenotypic Variation in Snake Venoms.

    PubMed

    Rokyta, Darin R; Margres, Mark J; Calvin, Kate

    2015-09-09

    Protein expression is a major link in the genotype-phenotype relationship, and processes affecting protein abundances, such as rates of transcription and translation, could contribute to phenotypic evolution if they generate heritable variation. Recent work has suggested that mRNA abundances do not accurately predict final protein abundances, which would imply that post-transcriptional regulatory processes contribute significantly to phenotypes. Post-transcriptional processes also appear to buffer changes in transcriptional patterns as species diverge, suggesting that the transcriptional changes have little or no effect on the phenotypes undergoing study. We tested for concordance between mRNA and protein expression levels in snake venoms by means of mRNA-seq and quantitative mass spectrometry for 11 snakes representing 10 species, six genera, and three families. In contrast to most previous work, we found high correlations between venom gland transcriptomes and venom proteomes for 10 of our 11 comparisons. We tested for protein-level buffering of transcriptional changes during species divergence by comparing the difference between transcript abundance and protein abundance for three pairs of species and one intraspecific pair. We found no evidence for buffering during divergence of our three species pairs but did find evidence for protein-level buffering for our single intraspecific comparison, suggesting that buffering, if present, was a transient phenomenon in venom divergence. Our results demonstrated that post-transcriptional mechanisms did not contribute significantly to phenotypic evolution in venoms and suggest a more prominent and direct role for cis-regulatory evolution in phenotypic variation, particularly for snake venoms.

  1. Post-transcriptional Mechanisms Contribute Little to Phenotypic Variation in Snake Venoms

    PubMed Central

    Rokyta, Darin R.; Margres, Mark J.; Calvin, Kate

    2015-01-01

    Protein expression is a major link in the genotype–phenotype relationship, and processes affecting protein abundances, such as rates of transcription and translation, could contribute to phenotypic evolution if they generate heritable variation. Recent work has suggested that mRNA abundances do not accurately predict final protein abundances, which would imply that post-transcriptional regulatory processes contribute significantly to phenotypes. Post-transcriptional processes also appear to buffer changes in transcriptional patterns as species diverge, suggesting that the transcriptional changes have little or no effect on the phenotypes undergoing study. We tested for concordance between mRNA and protein expression levels in snake venoms by means of mRNA-seq and quantitative mass spectrometry for 11 snakes representing 10 species, six genera, and three families. In contrast to most previous work, we found high correlations between venom gland transcriptomes and venom proteomes for 10 of our 11 comparisons. We tested for protein-level buffering of transcriptional changes during species divergence by comparing the difference between transcript abundance and protein abundance for three pairs of species and one intraspecific pair. We found no evidence for buffering during divergence of our three species pairs but did find evidence for protein-level buffering for our single intraspecific comparison, suggesting that buffering, if present, was a transient phenomenon in venom divergence. Our results demonstrated that post-transcriptional mechanisms did not contribute significantly to phenotypic evolution in venoms and suggest a more prominent and direct role for cis-regulatory evolution in phenotypic variation, particularly for snake venoms. PMID:26358130

  2. Stabilising the Integrity of Snake Venom mRNA Stored under Tropical Field Conditions Expands Research Horizons

    PubMed Central

    Logan, Rhiannon A. E.; Leung, Kam-Yin D.; Newberry, Fiona J.; Rowley, Paul D.; Dunbar, John P.; Wagstaff, Simon C.; Casewell, Nicholas R.; Harrison, Robert A.

    2016-01-01

    Background Snake venoms contain many proteinaceous toxins that can cause severe pathology and mortality in snakebite victims. Interestingly, mRNA encoding such toxins can be recovered directly from venom, although yields are low and quality is unknown. It also remains unclear whether such RNA contains information about toxin isoforms and whether it is representative of mRNA recovered from conventional sources, such as the venom gland. Answering these questions will address the feasibility of using venom-derived RNA for future research relevant to biomedical and antivenom applications. Methodology/Principal Findings Venom was extracted from several species of snake, including both members of the Viperidae and Elapidae, and either lyophilized or immediately added to TRIzol reagent. TRIzol-treated venom was incubated at a range of temperatures (4–37°C) for a range of durations (0–48 hours), followed by subsequent RNA isolation and assessments of RNA quantity and quality. Subsequently, full-length toxin transcripts were targeted for PCR amplification and Sanger sequencing. TRIzol-treated venom yielded total RNA of greater quantity and quality than lyophilized venom, and with quality comparable to venom gland-derived RNA. Full-length sequences from multiple Viperidae and Elapidae toxin families were successfully PCR amplified from TRIzol-treated venom RNA. We demonstrated that venom can be stored in TRIzol for 48 hours at 4–19°C, and 8 hours at 37°C, at minimal cost to RNA quality, and found that venom RNA encoded multiple toxin isoforms that seemed homologous (98–99% identity) to those found in the venom gland. Conclusions/Significance The non-invasive experimental modifications we propose will facilitate the future investigation of venom composition by using venom as an alternative source to venom gland tissue for RNA-based studies, thus obviating the undesirable need to sacrifice snakes for such research purposes. In addition, they expand research horizons

  3. Biological and enzymatic activities of Micrurus sp. (Coral) snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Cecchini, Alessandra L; Marcussi, Silvana; Silveira, Lucas B; Borja-Oliveira, Caroline R; Rodrigues-Simioni, Léa; Amara, Susan; Stábeli, Rodrigo G; Giglio, José R; Arantes, Eliane C; Soares, Andreimar M

    2005-01-01

    The venoms of Micrurus lemniscatus carvalhoi, Micrurus frontalis frontalis, Micrurus surinamensis surinamensis and Micrurus nigrocinctus nigrocinctus were assayed for biological activities. Although showing similar liposome disrupting and myotoxic activities, M. frontalis frontalis and M. nigrocinctus nigrocinctus displayed higher anticoagulant and phospholipase A2 (PLA2) activities. The latter induced a higher edema response within 30 min. Both venoms were the most toxic as well. In the isolated chick biventer cervicis preparation, M. lemniscatus carvalhoi venom blocked the indirectly elicited twitch-tension response (85+/-0.6% inhibition after a 15 min incubation at 5 microg of venom/mL) and the response to acetylcholine (ACh; 55 or 110 microM), without affecting the response to KCl (13.4 mM). In mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm preparation, the venom (5 microg/mL) produced a complete inhibition of the indirectly elicited contractile response after 50 min incubation and did not affect the contractions elicited by direct stimulation. M. lemniscatus carvalhoi inhibited 3H-L-glutamate uptake in brain synaptosomes in a Ca2+-, but not time, dependent manner. The replacement of Ca2+ by Sr2+ and ethylene glycol-bis(beta-aminoethyl ether) (EGTA), or alkylation of the venom with p-bromophenacyl bromide (BPB), inhibited 3H-L-glutamate uptake. M. lemniscatus carvalhoi venom cross-reacted with postsynaptic alpha-neurotoxins short-chain (antineurotoxin-II) and long-chain (antibungarotoxin) antibodies. It also cross-reacted with antimyotoxic PLA2 antibodies from M. nigrocinctus nigrocinctus (antinigroxin). Our results point to the need of catalytic activity for these venoms to exert their neurotoxic activity efficiently and to their components as attractive tools for the study of molecular targets on cell membranes.

  4. Neuromuscular activity of Bothrops fonsecai snake venom in vertebrate preparations

    PubMed Central

    Fernandes, Carla T; Giaretta, Vânia MA; Prudêncio, Luiz S; Toledo, Edvana O; da Silva, Igor RF; Collaço, Rita CO; Barbosa, Ana M; Hyslop, Stephen; Rodrigues-Simioni, Léa; Cogo, José C

    2014-01-01

    The neuromuscular activity of venom from Bothrops fonsecai, a lancehead endemic to southeastern Brazil, was investigated. Chick biventer cervicis (CBC) and mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm (PND) preparations were used for myographic recordings and mouse diaphragm muscle was used for membrane resting potential (RP) and miniature end-plate potential (MEPP) recordings. Creatine kinase release and muscle damage were also assessed. In CBC, venom (40, 80 and 160μg/ml) produced concentration- and time-dependent neuromuscular blockade (50% blockade in 85±9 min and 73±8 min with 80 and 160μg/ml, respectively) and attenuated the contractures to 110μM ACh (78–100% inhibition) and 40mM KCl (45–90% inhibition). The venom-induced decrease in twitch-tension in curarized, directly-stimulated preparations was similar to that in indirectly stimulated preparations. Venom (100 and 200μg/ml) also caused blockade in PND preparations (50% blockade in 94±13 min and 49±8 min with 100 and 200μg/ml, respectively) but did not alter the RP or MEPP amplitude. In CBC, venom caused creatine kinase release and myonecrosis. The venom-induced decrease in twitch-tension and in the contractures to ACh and K+ were abolished by preincubating venom with commercial antivenom. These findings indicate that Bothrops fonsecai venom interferes with neuromuscular transmission essentially through postsynaptic muscle damage that affects responses to ACh and KCl. These actions are effectively prevented by commercial antivenom. PMID:25028603

  5. Inactivation and fragmentation of lectin from Bothrops leucurus snake venom by gamma irradiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nunes, E. S.; Souza, M. A. A.; Vaz, A. F. M.; Coelho, L. C. B. B.; Aguiar, J. S.; Silva, T. G.; Guarnieri, M. C.; Melo, A. M. M. A.; Oliva, M. L. V.; Correia, M. T. S.

    2012-04-01

    Gamma radiation alters the molecular structure of biomolecules and is able to mitigate the action of snake venoms and their isolated toxins. The effect of γ-radiation on the folding of Bothrops lecurus venom lectin was measured by a hemagglutinating assay, intrinsic and bis-ANS fluorescence. Intrinsic and bis-ANS fluorescence analyses indicated that irradiation caused unfolding followed by aggregation of the lectin. Our results suggest that irradiation can lead to significant changes in the protein structure, which may promote the loss of its binding property and toxic action.

  6. Inhibitory effect of the plant Clusia fluminensis against biological activities of Bothrops jararaca snake venom.

    PubMed

    de Oliveira, Eduardo Coriolano; Anholeti, Maria Carolina; Domingos, Thaisa Francielle; Faioli, Camila Nunes; Sanchez, Eladio Flores; de Paiva, Selma Ribeiro; Fuly, André Lopes

    2014-01-01

    The ability of extracts of the plant Clusia fluminensis Planch & Triana (Clusiaceae Lindl.) to neutralize proteolysis, clotting, hemolysis, hemorrhagic and lethality activities of Bothrops jararaca snake venom was studied. Clusianone and lanosterol from the flower and fruit extracts, respectively, were also tested. The extracts of different organs of C. fluminensis inhibited proteolysis and hemolysis induced by B. jararaca venom, but with different potencies. Only the stems prevented blood clotting. Only the acetone extract of the fruit protected mice from hemorrhage while the acetone or methanol extracts prevented mice from death. Clusianone and lanosterol did not inhibit clotting or hemorrhage, but the former inhibited proteolysis and the latter hemolysis.

  7. Evaluation of the lethal potency of scorpion and snake venoms and comparison between intraperitoneal and intravenous injection routes.

    PubMed

    Oukkache, Naoual; El Jaoudi, Rachid; Ghalim, Noreddine; Chgoury, Fatima; Bouhaouala, Balkiss; Mdaghri, Naima El; Sabatier, Jean-Marc

    2014-06-12

    Scorpion stings and snake bites are major health hazards that lead to suffering of victims and high mortality. Thousands of injuries associated with such stings and bites of venomous animals occur every year worldwide. In North Africa, more than 100,000 scorpion stings and snake bites are reported annually. An appropriate determination of the 50% lethal doses (LD₅₀) of scorpion and snake venoms appears to be an important step to assess (and compare) venom toxic activity. Such LD₅₀ values are also commonly used to evaluate the neutralizing capacity of specific anti-venom batches. In the present work, we determined experimentally the LD₅₀ values of reference scorpion and snake venoms in Swiss mice, and evaluated the influence of two main venom injection routes (i.e., intraperitoneal (IP) versus intravenous (IV)). The analysis of experimental LD₅₀ values obtained with three collected scorpion venoms indicates that Androctonus mauretanicus (Am) is intrinsically more toxic than Androctonus australis hector (Aah) species, whereas the latter is more toxic than Buthus occitanus (Bo). Similar analysis of three representative snake venoms of the Viperidae family shows that Cerastes cerastes (Cc) is more toxic than either Bitis arietans (Ba) or Macrovipera lebetina (Ml) species. Interestingly, the venom of Elapidae cobra snake Naja haje (Nh) is far more toxic than viper venoms Cc, Ml and Ba, in agreement with the known severity of cobra-related envenomation. Also, our data showed that viper venoms are about three-times less toxic when injected IP as compared to IV, distinct from cobra venom Nh which exhibited a similar toxicity when injected IP or IV. Overall, this study clearly highlights the usefulness of procedure standardization, especially regarding the administration route, for evaluating the relative toxicity of individual animal venoms. It also evidenced a marked difference in lethal activity between venoms of cobra and vipers, which, apart from the

  8. Evaluation of the Lethal Potency of Scorpion and Snake Venoms and Comparison between Intraperitoneal and Intravenous Injection Routes

    PubMed Central

    Oukkache, Naoual; Jaoudi, Rachid El; Ghalim, Noreddine; Chgoury, Fatima; Bouhaouala, Balkiss; Mdaghri, Naima El; Sabatier, Jean-Marc

    2014-01-01

    Scorpion stings and snake bites are major health hazards that lead to suffering of victims and high mortality. Thousands of injuries associated with such stings and bites of venomous animals occur every year worldwide. In North Africa, more than 100,000 scorpion stings and snake bites are reported annually. An appropriate determination of the 50% lethal doses (LD50) of scorpion and snake venoms appears to be an important step to assess (and compare) venom toxic activity. Such LD50 values are also commonly used to evaluate the neutralizing capacity of specific anti-venom batches. In the present work, we determined experimentally the LD50 values of reference scorpion and snake venoms in Swiss mice, and evaluated the influence of two main venom injection routes (i.e., intraperitoneal (IP) versus intravenous (IV)). The analysis of experimental LD50 values obtained with three collected scorpion venoms indicates that Androctonus mauretanicus (Am) is intrinsically more toxic than Androctonus australis hector (Aah) species, whereas the latter is more toxic than Buthus occitanus (Bo). Similar analysis of three representative snake venoms of the Viperidae family shows that Cerastes cerastes (Cc) is more toxic than either Bitis arietans (Ba) or Macrovipera lebetina (Ml) species. Interestingly, the venom of Elapidae cobra snake Naja haje (Nh) is far more toxic than viper venoms Cc, Ml and Ba, in agreement with the known severity of cobra-related envenomation. Also, our data showed that viper venoms are about three-times less toxic when injected IP as compared to IV, distinct from cobra venom Nh which exhibited a similar toxicity when injected IP or IV. Overall, this study clearly highlights the usefulness of procedure standardization, especially regarding the administration route, for evaluating the relative toxicity of individual animal venoms. It also evidenced a marked difference in lethal activity between venoms of cobra and vipers, which, apart from the nature of toxins

  9. Neutralization of the haemorrhagic activities of viperine snake venoms and venom metalloproteinases using synthetic peptide inhibitors and chelators.

    PubMed

    Howes, J-M; Theakston, R D G; Laing, G D

    2007-04-01

    Envenoming by the West African saw-scaled viper, Echis ocellatus resembles that of most vipers, in that it results in local blistering, necrosis and sometimes life-threatening systemic haemorrhage. While effective against systemic envenoming, current antivenoms have little or no effect against local tissue damage. The major mediators of local venom pathology are the zinc-dependant snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs). The high degree of structural and functional homology between SVMPs and their mammalian relatives the matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) suggests that substrate/inhibitor interactions between these subfamilies are likely to be analogous. In this study, four recently developed MMP inhibitors (MMPIs) (Marimastat, AG-3340, CGS-270 23A and Bay-12 9566) are evaluated in addition to three metal ion chelators (EDTA, TPEN and BAPTA) for their ability to inhibit the haemorrhagic activities of the medically important E. ocellatus venom and one of its haemorrhagic SVMPs, EoVMP2. As expected, the metal ion chelators significantly inhibited the haemorrhagic activities of both whole E. ocellatus venom and EoVMP2, while the synthetic MMPIs show more variation in their efficacies. These variations suggest that individual MMPIs show specificity towards SVMPs and that their application to the neutralization of local haemorrhage may require a synthetic MMPI mixture, ensuring that a close structural component for each SVMP is represented. PMID:17196631

  10. Snake venom-like waprin from the frog of Ceratophrys calcarata contains antimicrobial function.

    PubMed

    Liu, Daixi; Wang, Yuwei; Wei, Lin; Ye, Huahu; Liu, Huan; Wang, Ling; Liu, Rui; Li, Dongsheng; Lai, Ren

    2013-02-10

    A 255-bp cDNA encoding an 84-amino acid residue (aa) precursor protein containing 8 half-cysteines was cloned from the skin of the frog, Ceratophrys calcarata. By sequence comparison and signal peptide prediction, the precursor was predicted to release a 63-aa mature peptide with amino acid sequence, NVTPATKPTPSKPGYCRVMDELILCPDPPLSKDLCKNDSDCPGAQKCCYRTCIMQCLPPIFRE. The mature was named ceratoxin. Ceratoxin shares significant sequence similarity with the toxin family of waprins containing the whey acidic protein-type (WAP) four-disulfide core domain found in snake venoms. Antimicrobial and trypsin-inhibitory abilities of recombinant ceratoxin were tested. Recombinant ceratoxin showed strong antimicrobial activities against wide spectrum of microorganisms including Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria and fungi. It had no serine protease-inhibitory activity. The current results suggested that the snake venom-like waprin with antimicrobial activities in the frog skin plays a role in innate immunity.

  11. Snake Venom L-Amino Acid Oxidases: Trends in Pharmacology and Biochemistry

    PubMed Central

    Izidoro, Luiz Fernando M.; Sobrinho, Juliana C.; Mendes, Mirian M.; Costa, Tássia R.; Grabner, Amy N.; Rodrigues, Veridiana M.; da Silva, Saulo L.; Zanchi, Fernando B.; Zuliani, Juliana P.; Fernandes, Carla F. C.; Calderon, Leonardo A.; Stábeli, Rodrigo G.; Soares, Andreimar M.

    2014-01-01

    L-amino acid oxidases are enzymes found in several organisms, including venoms of snakes, where they contribute to the toxicity of ophidian envenomation. Their toxicity is primarily due to enzymatic activity, but other mechanisms have been proposed recently which require further investigation. L-amino acid oxidases exert biological and pharmacological effects, including actions on platelet aggregation and the induction of apoptosis, hemorrhage, and cytotoxicity. These proteins present a high biotechnological potential for the development of antimicrobial, antitumor, and antiprotozoan agents. This review provides an overview of the biochemical properties and pharmacological effects of snake venom L-amino acid oxidases, their structure/activity relationship, and supposed mechanisms of action described so far. PMID:24738050

  12. MP-4 Contributes to Snake Venom Neutralization by Mucuna pruriens Seeds through an Indirect Antibody-mediated Mechanism.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Ashish; Gupta, Chitra; Nair, Deepak T; Salunke, Dinakar M

    2016-05-20

    Mortality due to snakebite is a serious public health problem, and available therapeutics are known to induce debilitating side effects. Traditional medicine suggests that seeds of Mucuna pruriens can provide protection against the effects of snakebite. Our aim is to identify the protein(s) that may be important for snake venom neutralization and elucidate its mechanism of action. To this end, we have identified and purified a protein from M. pruriens, which we have named MP-4. The full-length polypeptide sequence of MP-4 was obtained through N-terminal sequencing of peptide fragments. Sequence analysis suggested that the protein may belong to the Kunitz-type protease inhibitor family and therefore may potentially neutralize the proteases present in snake venom. Using various structural and biochemical tools coupled with in vivo assays, we are able to show that MP-4 does not afford direct protection against snake venom because it is actually a poor inhibitor of serine proteases. Further experiments showed that antibodies generated against MP-4 cross-react with the whole venom and provide protection to mice against Echis carinatus snake venom. This study shows that the MP-4 contributes significantly to the snake venom neutralization activity of M. pruriens seeds through an indirect antibody-mediated mechanism. PMID:26987900

  13. Inhibition of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors, a Novel Facet in the Pleiotropic Activities of Snake Venom Phospholipases A2

    PubMed Central

    Vulfius, Catherine A.; Kasheverov, Igor E.; Starkov, Vladislav G.; Osipov, Alexey V.; Andreeva, Tatyana V.; Filkin, Sergey Yu.; Gorbacheva, Elena V.; Astashev, Maxim E.; Tsetlin, Victor I.; Utkin, Yuri N.

    2014-01-01

    Phospholipases A2 represent the most abundant family of snake venom proteins. They manifest an array of biological activities, which is constantly expanding. We have recently shown that a protein bitanarin, isolated from the venom of the puff adder Bitis arietans and possessing high phospholipolytic activity, interacts with different types of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and with the acetylcholine-binding protein. To check if this property is characteristic to all venom phospholipases A2, we have studied the capability of these enzymes from other snakes to block the responses of Lymnaea stagnalis neurons to acetylcholine or cytisine and to inhibit α-bungarotoxin binding to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and acetylcholine-binding proteins. Here we present the evidence that phospholipases A2 from venoms of vipers Vipera ursinii and V. nikolskii, cobra Naja kaouthia, and krait Bungarus fasciatus from different snake families suppress the acetylcholine- or cytisine-elicited currents in L. stagnalis neurons and compete with α-bungarotoxin for binding to muscle- and neuronal α7-types of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, as well as to acetylcholine-binding proteins. As the phospholipase A2 content in venoms is quite high, under some conditions the activity found may contribute to the deleterious venom effects. The results obtained suggest that the ability to interact with nicotinic acetylcholine receptors may be a general property of snake venom phospholipases A2, which add a new target to the numerous activities of these enzymes. PMID:25522251

  14. Identification and phylogeny of Arabian snakes: Comparison of venom chromatographic profiles versus 16S rRNA gene sequences.

    PubMed

    Al Asmari, Abdulrahman; Manthiri, Rajamohammed Abbas; Khan, Haseeb Ahmad

    2014-11-01

    Identification of snake species is important for various reasons including the emergency treatment of snake bite victims. We present a simple method for identification of six snake species using the gel filtration chromatographic profiles of their venoms. The venoms of Echis coloratus, Echis pyramidum, Cerastes gasperettii, Bitis arietans, Naja arabica, and Walterinnesia aegyptia were milked, lyophilized, diluted and centrifuged to separate the mucus from the venom. The clear supernatants were filtered and chromatographed on fast protein liquid chromatography (FPLC). We obtained the 16S rRNA gene sequences of the above species and performed phylogenetic analysis using the neighbor-joining method. The chromatograms of venoms from different snake species showed peculiar patterns based on the number and location of peaks. The dendrograms generated from similarity matrix based on the presence/absence of particular chromatographic peaks clearly differentiated Elapids from Viperids. Molecular cladistics using 16S rRNA gene sequences resulted in jumping clades while separating the members of these two families. These findings suggest that chromatographic profiles of snake venoms may provide a simple and reproducible chemical fingerprinting method for quick identification of snake species. However, the validation of this methodology requires further studies on large number of specimens from within and across species. PMID:25313278

  15. Micrurus snake species: Venom immunogenicity, antiserum cross-reactivity and neutralization potential.

    PubMed

    Tanaka, Gabriela D; Sant'Anna, Osvaldo Augusto; Marcelino, José Roberto; Lustoza da Luz, Ana Cristina; Teixeira da Rocha, Marisa Maria; Tambourgi, Denise V

    2016-07-01

    Micrurus snakebites can cause death by muscle paralysis and respiratory arrest a few hours after envenomation. The specific treatment for these snake envenomations is the intravenous application of heterologous antivenom. In Brazil, this antivenom is produced from horses that are immunized with a mixture of Micrurus corallinus and Micrurus frontalis venoms, which are snakes that inhabit the south and southeastern regions of the country. Previously, we demonstrated that the coral antivenom, which is used in human therapy, was not able to neutralize several of the toxic venom effects from some Micrurus species that inhabit the country, as measured by in vitro and in vivo assays. The present study aimed to investigate the immunogenic properties of Micrurus spp. venoms, as well as the cross-reactivity and neutralization potential of experimental monovalent and polyvalent sera that were produced in different animal species. The present data showed that Micrurus venoms exhibited the same immunogenicity pattern in the three utilized animal species and that the specific antisera presented a large cross-reactivity when analyzed with ELISA and Western blot assays. Nonetheless, these positive results were not well correlated with the neutralizing potential of the antisera. Thus, the establishment of a new antigenic mixture to produce novel more efficient therapeutic Micrurus antivenom is not a simple task. Further studies, particularly with the Micrurus lemniscatus, Micrurus altirostris and Micrurus surinamensis venoms, are necessary to establish new strategies for the production of antivenoms with broad neutralizing activity for the treatment of accidents involving coral snakes throughout the country.

  16. Micrurus snake species: Venom immunogenicity, antiserum cross-reactivity and neutralization potential.

    PubMed

    Tanaka, Gabriela D; Sant'Anna, Osvaldo Augusto; Marcelino, José Roberto; Lustoza da Luz, Ana Cristina; Teixeira da Rocha, Marisa Maria; Tambourgi, Denise V

    2016-07-01

    Micrurus snakebites can cause death by muscle paralysis and respiratory arrest a few hours after envenomation. The specific treatment for these snake envenomations is the intravenous application of heterologous antivenom. In Brazil, this antivenom is produced from horses that are immunized with a mixture of Micrurus corallinus and Micrurus frontalis venoms, which are snakes that inhabit the south and southeastern regions of the country. Previously, we demonstrated that the coral antivenom, which is used in human therapy, was not able to neutralize several of the toxic venom effects from some Micrurus species that inhabit the country, as measured by in vitro and in vivo assays. The present study aimed to investigate the immunogenic properties of Micrurus spp. venoms, as well as the cross-reactivity and neutralization potential of experimental monovalent and polyvalent sera that were produced in different animal species. The present data showed that Micrurus venoms exhibited the same immunogenicity pattern in the three utilized animal species and that the specific antisera presented a large cross-reactivity when analyzed with ELISA and Western blot assays. Nonetheless, these positive results were not well correlated with the neutralizing potential of the antisera. Thus, the establishment of a new antigenic mixture to produce novel more efficient therapeutic Micrurus antivenom is not a simple task. Further studies, particularly with the Micrurus lemniscatus, Micrurus altirostris and Micrurus surinamensis venoms, are necessary to establish new strategies for the production of antivenoms with broad neutralizing activity for the treatment of accidents involving coral snakes throughout the country. PMID:27045363

  17. Purification and characterization of a hemorrhagic metalloproteinase from Bothrops lanceolatus (Fer-de-lance) snake venom.

    PubMed

    Stroka, Alessandra; Donato, José L; Bon, Cassian; Hyslop, Stephen; de Araújo, Albetiza Lôbo

    2005-03-15

    Bothrops snake venoms contain metalloproteinases that contribute to the local effects seen after envenoming. In this work, a hemorrhagic metalloproteinase (BlaH1) was purified from the venom of the snake Bothrops lanceolatus by a combination of gel filtration, affinity (metal chelating) and hydrophobic interaction chromatographies. The hemorrhagin was homogeneous by SDS-PAGE and had a molecular mass of 28 kDa that was unaltered by treatment with beta-mercaptoethanol. BlaH1 gave a single band in immunoelectrophoresis and immunoblotting using commercial bothropic antivenom. BlaH1 had hemorrhagic, caseinolytic, fibrinogenolytic, collagenolytic and elastinolytic activities, but no phospholipase A(2) activity. The hemorrhagic and caseinolytic activities were inhibited by EDTA, indicating that they were metal ion-dependent. In contrast, aprotinin, benzamidine and PMSF did not affect these activities. The caseinolytic activity of BlaH1 had a pH optimum of 8.0 and was stable in solution at up to 40 degrees C; activity was completely lost at > or =70 degrees C. The hemorrhagic activity was neutralized by commercial bothropic antivenom. These properties suggest that this new hemorrhagin belongs to class P-I snake venom metalloproteinases. PMID:15733562

  18. Antigenic cross-reactivity and species-specific identification of Pseudocerastes persicus fieldi snake venom.

    PubMed

    Ibrahim, Nihal M; El-Kady, Ebtsam M

    2016-09-01

    In the present study, we recognized progressively high immunological cross-reactivity between Pseudocerastes persicus fieldi (Pf) venom and six other medically important Egyptian snake venoms belonging to families Viperidae and Elapidae. Antibodies with a range of bonding strengths were shown to be involved in such cross-reactivity. Two strategies have been tried to access specificity; (i) using affinity purified species-specific anti-Pf antivenom antibodies, (ii) conducting the assay in the presence of ammonium thiocyanate (NH4SCN). The discrimination power of the prepared species-specific antivenom was demonstrated by its ability to detect Pf venom over a range of Pf concentrations (2.5 ng-2.5 μg) in a variety of body fluids. The assay could distinguish circulating Pf antigens from other viper antigens in the whole blood of experimentally envenomed mice. What seems promising in our work is the use of the chaotrope, NH4SCN, which renders the reaction medium more favorable for the specific homologous antigen-antibody interactions, primarily via preventing lower avid antibodies to share and, to a bit lesser extent, by decreasing non-specific absorbance signals frequently encountered with ELISA assays. The ELISA described herein may be useful for clinicians for identification of snake bites inflicted by Pf snake species. Balancing between specificity and sensitivity has to be considered for best results. PMID:27319296

  19. Genotoxic effect of Bothrops snake venoms and isolated toxins on human lymphocyte DNA.

    PubMed

    Marcussi, Silvana; Stábeli, Rodrigo G; Santos-Filho, Norival A; Menaldo, Danilo L; Silva Pereira, Luciana L; Zuliani, Juliana P; Calderon, Leonardo A; da Silva, Saulo L; Antunes, Lusânia M Greggi; Soares, Andreimar M

    2013-04-01

    In the present study, micronucleus with cytokinesis blocking and comet assays were used to evaluate the genotoxic potential of Bothrops jararacussu, Bothrops atrox, Bothrops moojeni, Bothrops alternatus (Rhinocerophis alternatus) and Bothrops brazili snake venoms, and also of some isolated toxins (MjTX-I, BthTX-I and II myotoxins, BjussuMP-II metalloprotease, and BatxLAAO l-amino acid oxidase) on human lymphocytes. Significant DNA damages were observed, indicating genotoxic potential after exposure of the lymphocytes to the toxins BthTX-I, II and BatxLAAO compared to untreated and Cisplatin-treated controls, which were able to induce greater formation of micronuclei. B. brazili, B. jararacussu and B. atrox crude venoms also presented genotoxic potential, and the latter two induced DNA breakage 5 times more often than in normal environmental conditions (control without treatment). B. jararacussu venom and its isolated toxins, as well as an LAAO from B. atrox, were able to cause lymphocyte DNA breakage in the comet test with more than 85% damage levels. The DNA damage evaluation allows a widening of the toxic-pharmacological characterization of snake venoms and their toxins and also contributes to the understanding of the mechanisms of action of these molecules in several human pathologies. PMID:23333649

  20. A retrospective study of use of polyvalent anti-snake venom and risk factors for mortality from snake bite in a tertiary care setting

    PubMed Central

    Pore, Shraddha M.; Ramanand, Sunita J.; Patil, Praveenkumar T.; Gore, Alka D.; Pawar, Mayur P.; Gaidhankar, Smita L.; Ghanghas, Ravi R.

    2015-01-01

    Aims: Envenomation with poisonous snakes is associated with considerable morbidity and mortality. The present study was undertaken with the objectives of assessing anti-snake venom (ASV) use, early adverse reactions to ASV, premedication and clinical outcomes in snake bite patients. Association of various risk factors (age, gender, dose of ASV, time gap between snake bite and ASV administration, use of mechanical ventilation and type of snake bite) with mortality was also assessed. Settings and Design: This retrospective study was conducted at two Tertiary Care Teaching Hospitals. Subjects and Methods: The medical records of 176 patients of snake bite with documented use of ASV were retrospectively analyzed to retrieve relevant data. Statistical Analysis: Descriptive statistics was used to express results about ASV use, early adverse reactions to ASV, premedication and clinical outcomes. Univariate and multivariate analysis was performed to find out significant risk factors associated with mortality. Results: The main indication for ASV was vasculotoxic snake bite (75%) followed by neurotoxic snake bite (16%). Mean dose of ASV was 18.63 ± 14.52 vials. Prophylactic premedication with corticosteroids alone or in combination with antihistaminic was used in more than 70% patients. Early adverse reactions to ASV were seen in 4% patients. Neurotoxic snake bite was a significant risk factor associated with mortality in multivariate analysis. Conclusions: Neurotoxic snake bite is an independent predictor of mortality in snake bite patients. Currently used polyvalent ASV may be less effective in treating neurotoxic snake bite. PMID:26069363

  1. Anti-snake venom properties of Schizolobium parahyba (Caesalpinoideae) aqueous leaves extract.

    PubMed

    Mendes, Mirian M; Oliveira, Carolina F; Lopes, Daiana S; Vale, Luís Henrique F; Alcântara, Tânia M; Izidoro, Luiz Fernando M; Hamaguchi, Amélia; Homsi-Brandeburgo, Maria Inês; Soares, Andreimar M; Rodrigues, Veridiana M

    2008-07-01

    Many medicinal plants have been recommended for the treatment of snakebites. The aqueous extracts prepared from the leaves of Schizolobium parahyba (a plant found in Mata Atlantica in Southeastern Brazil) were assayed for their ability to inhibit some enzymatic and biological activities induced by Bothrops pauloensis and Crotalus durissus terrificus venoms as well as by their isolated toxins neuwiedase (metalloproteinase), BnSP-7 (basic Lys49 PLA(2)) and CB (PLA(2) from crotoxin complex). Phospholipase A(2), coagulant, fibrinogenolytic, hemorrhagic and myotoxic activities induced by B. pauloensis and C. d. terrificus venoms, as well as by their isolated toxins were significantly inhibited when different amounts of S. parahyba were incubated previously with these venoms and toxins before assays. However, when S. parahyba was administered at the same route as the venoms or toxins injections, the tissue local damage, such as hemorrhage and myotoxicity was only partially inhibited. The study also evaluated the inhibitory effect of S. parahyba upon the spreading of venom proteins from the injected area into the systemic circulation. The neutralization of systemic alterations induced by i.m. injection of B. pauloensis venom was evaluated by measuring platelet and plasma fibrinogen levels which were significantly maintained when S. parahyba extract inoculation occurred at the same route after B. pauloensis venom injection. In conclusion, the observations confirmed that the aqueous extract of S. parahyba possesses potent snake venom neutralizing properties. It may be used as an alternative treatment to serum therapy and as a rich source of potential inhibitors of toxins involved in several physiopathological human and animal diseases.

  2. Effects of Bothrops asper Snake Venom on Lymphatic Vessels: Insights into a Hidden Aspect of Envenomation

    PubMed Central

    Mora, Javier; Mora, Rodrigo; Lomonte, Bruno; Gutiérrez, José María

    2008-01-01

    Background Envenomations by the snake Bothrops asper represent a serious medical problem in Central America and parts of South America. These envenomations concur with drastic local tissue pathology, including a prominent edema. Since lymph flow plays a role in the maintenance of tissue fluid balance, the effect of B. asper venom on collecting lymphatic vessels was studied. Methodology/Principal Findings B. asper venom was applied to mouse mesentery, and the effects were studied using an intravital microscopy methodology coupled with an image analysis program. B. asper venom induced a dose-dependent contraction of collecting lymphatic vessels, resulting in a reduction of their lumen and in a halting of lymph flow. The effect was reproduced by a myotoxic phospholipase A2 (PLA2) homologue isolated from this venom, but not by a hemorrhagic metalloproteinase or a coagulant thrombin-like serine proteinase. In agreement with this, treatment of the venom with fucoidan, a myotoxin inhibitor, abrogated the effect, whereas no inhibition was observed after incubation with the peptidomimetic metalloproteinase inhibitor Batimastat. Moreover, fucoidan significantly reduced venom-induced footpad edema. The myotoxic PLA2 homologue, known to induce skeletal muscle necrosis, was able to induce cytotoxicity in smooth muscle cells in culture and to promote an increment in the permeability to propidium iodide in these cells. Conclusions/Significance Our observations indicate that B. asper venom affects collecting lymphatic vessels through the action of myotoxic PLA2s on the smooth muscle of these vessels, inducing cell contraction and irreversible cell damage. This activity may play an important role in the pathogenesis of the pronounced local edema characteristic of viperid snakebite envenomation, as well as in the systemic biodistribution of the venom, thus representing a potential therapeutical target in these envenomations. PMID:18923712

  3. Antivenom Cross-Neutralization of the Venoms of Hydrophis schistosus and Hydrophis curtus, Two Common Sea Snakes in Malaysian Waters

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Choo Hock; Tan, Nget Hong; Tan, Kae Yi; Kwong, Kok Onn

    2015-01-01

    Sea snake envenomation is a serious occupational hazard in tropical waters. In Malaysia, the beaked sea snake (Hydrophis schistosus, formerly known as Enhydrina schistosa) and the spine-bellied sea snake (Hydrophis curtus, formerly known as Lapemis curtus or Lapemis hardwickii) are two commonly encountered species. Australian CSL sea snake antivenom is the definitive treatment for sea snake envenomation; it is unfortunately extremely costly locally and is not widely available or adequately stocked in local hospitals. This study investigated the cross-neutralizing potential of three regionally produced anti-cobra antivenoms against the venoms of Malaysian H. schistosus and H. curtus. All three antivenoms conferred paraspecific protection from sea snake venom lethality in mice, with potency increasing in the following order: Taiwan bivalent antivenom < Thai monocled cobra monovalent antivenom < Thai neuro polyvalent antivenom (NPAV). NPAV demonstrated cross-neutralizing potencies of 0.4 mg/vial for H. schistosus venom and 0.8 mg/vial for H. curtus, which translates to a dose of less than 20 vials of NPAV to neutralize an average amount of sea snake venom per bite (inferred from venom milking). The cross-neutralization activity was supported by ELISA cross-reactivity between NPAV and the venoms of H. schistosus (58.4%) and H. curtus (70.4%). These findings revealed the potential of NPAV as a second-line treatment for sea snake envenomation in the region. Further profiling of the cross-neutralization activity should address the antivenomic basis using purified toxin-based assays. PMID:25690691

  4. Multilevel induction of categories: venomous snakes hijack the learning of lower category levels.

    PubMed

    Noh, Sharon M; Yan, Veronica X; Vendetti, Michael S; Castel, Alan D; Bjork, Robert A

    2014-08-01

    The induction of categories and concepts from examples-which plays an important role in how people come to organize and understand the world-can happen at multiple levels, but how do competing values at these different levels affect learning? Using perceptually rich images of snakes, we asked participants to attend to either the snakes' specific genus or a broader categorization and then tested induction at both levels. We also varied the intrinsic value of the broader categorization (high value: whether the snake was venomous; low value: whether it was tropical). We found an interaction between study instruction and intrinsic value: Participants in the low-value condition were better able to induce the level they were instructed to attend to (i.e., genus or broader category) than to induce the level they were not instructed to attend to, whereas participants in the high-value condition, regardless of the level of categorization they were instructed to attend to, were significantly better at learning the broad categorization (for them, whether the snake was venomous) than were participants in the low-value condition. Our results suggest that intrinsically valuable features can disrupt the intentional learning of other, task-relevant information, but enhance the incidental learning of the same information.

  5. Inhibition of hemorrhagic and edematogenic activities of snake venoms by a broad-spectrum protease inhibitor, murinoglobulin; the effect on venoms from five different genera in Viperidae family.

    PubMed

    Ribeiro Filho, Wilker; Sugiki, Masahiko; Yoshida, Etsuo; Maruyama, Masugi

    2003-08-01

    In order to obtain basic data on the effect of broad-spectrum protease inhibitor against local symptoms of Viperidae snake envenomation, inhibitory capacity of rat murinoglobulin on local hemorrhagic and edematogenic activities of venoms from Crotalus atrox, Bothrops jararaca, Lachesis muta muta, Trimeresurus flavoviridis and Echis carinatus sochureki were examined. Murinoglobulin, pre-incubated with the crude venoms at 37 degrees C for 15 min, inhibited hemorrhagic activity of all five venoms to various extents. The activity of C. atrox was almost completely inhibited at the murinoglobulin/venom ratio (w/w) of 20. The activity of B. jararaca, Lachesis muta muta and T. flavoviridis venoms was considerably inhibited at the ratio of 20 (77.2, 80.0 and 86.2% inhibition, respectively), however some of the activity still remained even at the ratio of 40 (84.2, 79.8 and 86.2% inhibition, respectively). Among the five venoms, E. c. sochureki venom is quite resistant to murinoglobulin treatment and statistically significant inhibition was only found at the ratio of 40 (64.1% inhibition). Fibrinolytic and gelatinase activities were more susceptible to murinoglobulin inhibition. The treatment at the ratios of 10 and 20 almost completely inhibited respectively the fibrinolytic and the gelatinase activities of all the venoms. Murinoglobulin treatment also significantly inhibited the edematogenic activity of L. muta muta, T. flavoviridis and Echis carinatus sochureki. The treatment of murinoglobulin at the ratio of 40 considerably suppressed the swelling up to 60 min after subcutaneous injection of L. muta muta and E. c. sochureki venoms, and up to 30 min after T. flavoviridis venom injection. Murinoglobulin is a potent inhibitor against local effects of multiple snake venoms in Viperidae family. PMID:12906888

  6. Pathogenesis of myonecrosis induced by coral snake (Micrurus nigrocinctus) venom in mice.

    PubMed Central

    Gutiérrez, J. M.; Arroyo, O.; Chaves, F.; Lomonte, B.; Cerdas, L.

    1986-01-01

    The mode by which coral snake (Micrurus nigrocinctus) venom affects skeletal muscle was studied using a combined approach. The venom induced early functional and structural alterations in the plasma membrane of muscle cells, suggesting that sarcolemma is the primary site of action of this venom. This was shown by the presence of wedge-shaped ('delta') lesions at the periphery of the cells, as well as by focal disruptions in the continuity of plasma membrane as early as 15 min after envenomation. After this initial alteration the rest of the organelles were severely affected. Myofilaments were hypercontracted leaving, as a consequence, areas of overstretched myofibrils as well as empty spaces. Eventually, myofilaments formed dense, clumped masses in which the striated structure was totally lost. At 24 h, myofilaments were still disorganized but they presented a more hyaline and homogeneous appearance. As early as 15 and 30 min mitochondria were swollen; later, by I, 3 and 24 h, they showed further alterations such as the presence of dense intracristal spaces and vesiculated cristae, as well as disruption in the integrity of their membranes. Sarcoplasmic reticulum was dilated and disorganized into many small vesicles randomly distributed throughout the cellular space. Moreover, the venom induced a rapid decrease in muscle levels of creatine and creatine-kinase (CK) and a calcium influx. Since the rates of efflux of creatine and CK were similar, it is suggested that the lesions produced in the membrane are large enough to allow the escape of these two molecules. As corroboration of the severe myotoxic effect, envenomated mice excreted reddish urine containing large quantities of myoglobin. Skeletal muscle cells are more susceptible to the action of the venom than erythrocytes, since coral snake venom induced only a mild direct haemolytic effect in vitro and haemolysis is not a significant effect in vivo. M. nigrocinctus venom induced a drastic increase in plasma

  7. Identification and molecular characterization of five putative toxins from the venom gland of the snake Philodryas chamissonis (Serpentes: Dipsadidae).

    PubMed

    Urra, Félix A; Pulgar, Rodrigo; Gutiérrez, Ricardo; Hodar, Christian; Cambiazo, Verónica; Labra, Antonieta

    2015-12-15

    Philodryas chamissonis is a rear-fanged snake endemic to Chile. Its bite produces mild to moderate symptoms with proteolytic and anti-coagulant effects. Presently, the composition of the venom, as well as, the biochemical and structural characteristics of its toxins, remains unknown. In this study, we cloned and reported the first full-length sequences of five toxin-encoding genes from the venom gland of this species: Type III snake venom metalloprotease (SVMP), snake venom serine protease (SVSP), Cysteine-rich secretory protein (CRISP), α and β subunits of C-type lectin-like protein (CLP) and C-type natriuretic peptide (NP). These genes are highly expressed in the venom gland and their sequences exhibited a putative signal peptide, suggesting that these are components of the venom. These putative toxins had different evolutionary relationships with those reported for some front-fanged snakes, being SVMP, SVSP and CRISP of P. chamissonis closely related to the toxins present in Elapidae species, while NP was more related to those of Viperidae species. In addition, analyses suggest that the α and β subunits of CLP of P. chamissonis might have a α-subunit scaffold in common with Viperidae species, whose highly variable C-terminal region might have allowed the diversification in α and β subunits. Our results provide the first molecular description of the toxins possibly implicated in the envenomation of prey and humans by the bite of P. chamissonis. PMID:26410112

  8. Identification and molecular characterization of five putative toxins from the venom gland of the snake Philodryas chamissonis (Serpentes: Dipsadidae).

    PubMed

    Urra, Félix A; Pulgar, Rodrigo; Gutiérrez, Ricardo; Hodar, Christian; Cambiazo, Verónica; Labra, Antonieta

    2015-12-15

    Philodryas chamissonis is a rear-fanged snake endemic to Chile. Its bite produces mild to moderate symptoms with proteolytic and anti-coagulant effects. Presently, the composition of the venom, as well as, the biochemical and structural characteristics of its toxins, remains unknown. In this study, we cloned and reported the first full-length sequences of five toxin-encoding genes from the venom gland of this species: Type III snake venom metalloprotease (SVMP), snake venom serine protease (SVSP), Cysteine-rich secretory protein (CRISP), α and β subunits of C-type lectin-like protein (CLP) and C-type natriuretic peptide (NP). These genes are highly expressed in the venom gland and their sequences exhibited a putative signal peptide, suggesting that these are components of the venom. These putative toxins had different evolutionary relationships with those reported for some front-fanged snakes, being SVMP, SVSP and CRISP of P. chamissonis closely related to the toxins present in Elapidae species, while NP was more related to those of Viperidae species. In addition, analyses suggest that the α and β subunits of CLP of P. chamissonis might have a α-subunit scaffold in common with Viperidae species, whose highly variable C-terminal region might have allowed the diversification in α and β subunits. Our results provide the first molecular description of the toxins possibly implicated in the envenomation of prey and humans by the bite of P. chamissonis.

  9. Biochemical and biological properties of phospholipases A(2) from Bothrops atrox snake venom.

    PubMed

    Kanashiro, Milton M; de Cássia M Escocard, Rita; Petretski, Jorge H; Prates, Maura V; Alves, Elias W; Machado, Olga L T; da Silva, Wilmar Dias; Kipnis, Thereza L

    2002-10-01

    Phospholipases A(2) (PLA(2)s), of molecular mass 13-15kDa, are commonly isolated from snake venom. Two myotoxins with PLA(2) activity, BaPLA(2)I and BaPLA(2)III, with estimated molecular masses of 15kDa were isolated from the venom of Bothrops atrox using Sephacryl S-100-HR and reverse-phase chromatography. BaPLA(2)I was basic, with a pI of 9.1, while BaPLA(2)III was neutral with a pI of 6.9. On a molecular basis, BaPLA(2)III exhibited higher catalytic activity on synthetic substrates than BaPLA(2)I. Comparison of the N-terminal residues of BaPLA(2)I with other PLA(2) proteins from snake venoms showed that it has the highest homology (94%) with B. asper myotoxin II and homology with a PLA(2) Lys(49) from B. atrox (89%). In contrast, BaPLA(2)III demonstrated 75, 72, and 71% homology with PLA(2) from Vipera ammodytes meridionalis, B. jararacussu, and B. jararaca, respectively. BaPLA(2)I and BaPLA(2)III were capable, in vitro, of inducing mast cell degranulation and, in vivo, of causing creatine kinase release, edema, and myonecrosis typical of PLA(2)s from snake venoms, characterized by rapid disruption of the plasma membrane as indicated by clumping of myofilaments and necrosis of affected skeletal muscle cells. BaPLA(2)I- and BaPLA(2)III-specific monoclonal and polyclonal antibodies, although incapable of neutralizing PLA(2) edematogenic activity, blocked myonecrosis efficiently in an in vivo neutralization assay. The results presented herein suggest that the biological active site responsible for edema induction by these two PLA(2) enzymes is distinct from the myonecrosis active site and is not dependent upon the catalytic activity of the PLA(2) enzyme. PMID:12234622

  10. Homology modeling, molecular dynamics and atomic level interaction study of snake venom 5' nucleotidase.

    PubMed

    Arafat, A Syed Yasir; Arun, A; Ilamathi, M; Asha, J; Sivashankari, P R; D'Souza, Cletus J M; Sivaramakrishnan, V; Dhananjaya, B L

    2014-03-01

    5' Nucleotidase (5' NUC) is a ubiquitously distributed enzyme known to be present in snake venoms (SV) that is responsible primarily for causing dysregulation of physiological homeostasis in humans by inducing anticoagulant effects and by inhibiting platelet aggregation. It is also known to act synergistically with other toxins to exert a more pronounced anti-coagulant effect during envenomation. Its structural and functional role is not yet ascertained clearly. The 3D structure of snake venom 5' nucleotidase (SV-5' NUC) is not yet known and was predicted by us for the first time using a comparative homology modeling approach using Demansia vestigiata protein sequence. The accuracy and stability of the predicted SV-5' NUC structure were validated using several computational approaches. Key interactions of SV-5' NUC were studied using experimental studies/molecular docking analysis of the inhibitors vanillin, vanillic acid and maltol. All these inhibitors were found to dock favorably following pharmacologically relevant absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion (ADME) profiles. Further, atomic level docking interaction studies using inhibitors of the SV-5' NUC active site revealed amino acid residues Y65 and T72 as important for inhibitor-(SV-5' NUC) interactions. Our in silico analysis is in good agreement with experimental inhibition results of SV-5' NUC with vanillin, vanillic acid and maltol. The present study should therefore play a guiding role in the experimental design of new SV-5' NUC inhibitors for snake bite management. We also identified a few pharmacophoric features essential for SV-5' NUC inhibitory activity that can be utilized further for the discovery of putative anti-venom agents of therapeutic value for snake bite management.

  11. The ability of low level laser therapy to prevent muscle tissue damage induced by snake venom.

    PubMed

    Doin-Silva, Rosany; Baranauskas, Vitor; Rodrigues-Simioni, Lea; da Cruz-Höfling, Maria Alice

    2009-01-01

    Antivenom therapy has been ineffective in neutralizing the severe local fast developing tissue damage following snakebite envenoming. Herein, some effects of in situ helium neon (HeNe) laser irradiation on rat nerve-muscle preparation injected with Bothrops jararacussu venom are described. The tibialis anterior muscle was injected with venom diluted in 0.9% saline solution (60 microg/0.02 mL) or saline solution alone. Sixty minutes after venom injection, laser (HeNe) treatment was administered at three incident energy densities: dose 1, a single exposure of 3.5 J cm(-2); dose 2, three exposures of 3.5 J cm(-2); dose 3, a single exposure of 10.5 J cm(-2). Muscle function was assessed through twitch tension recordings whereas muscle damage was evaluated through histopathologic analysis, morphometry of area of tissue affected and creatine kinase (CK) serum levels, and compared to unirradiated muscles. Laser application at the dose of 3.5 J cm(-2) reduced the area of injury by 64% (15.9 +/- 1.5%vs 44.2 +/- 5.7%), decreased the neuromuscular blockade (NMB) by 62% (11.5 +/- 2.5%vs 30.4 +/- 5.2%) and reduced CK levels by 58% (from 455 +/- 4.5% to 190.3 +/- 23.4%) when compared with unirradiated controls. Dose 2 showed a poorer benefit than dose 1, and dose 3 was ineffective in preventing the venom effects. Measurements of the absorbance of unirradiated and irradiated venom solution showed no difference in absorption spectra. In addition, no difference in the intensity of partial NMB in nerve-muscle preparation was shown by unirradiated and irradiated venom. The results indicate that the laser light did not alter venom toxicity. We conclude that HeNe laser irradiation at a dosage of 3.5 J cm(-2) effectively reduces myonecrosis and the neuromuscular transmission blocking effect caused by B. jararacussu snake venom. Thus, low level laser therapy may be a promising tool to minimize the severity of some of the local effects of snake envenoming. PMID:18643907

  12. Protective effect of snake venom antibodies in sera of previous snake bite victims.

    PubMed

    Theakston, R D; Reid, H A; Iddon, D; Larrick, J W

    1983-06-01

    Three out of seven serum samples from Ecuadorian Indians had very high antibody levels against Bothrops nasutus venom, and IgG concentrates of these sera effectively neutralized this venom when subsequently injected into mice. It is concluded that the high mortality rate among these Indians would be even higher if there were not such natural protection. Further research into active immunization of humans should be encouraged. PMID:6625731

  13. Neurological effects of venomous bites and stings: snakes, spiders, and scorpions.

    PubMed

    Del Brutto, Oscar H

    2013-01-01

    Snake and spider bites, as well as scorpion sting envenoming, are neglected diseases affecting millions of people all over the world. Neurological complications vary according to the offending animal, and are often directly related to toxic effects of the venom, affecting the central nervous system, the neuromuscular transmission, the cardiovascular system, or the coagulation cascade. Snake bite envenoming may result in stroke or muscle paralysis. Metalloproteinases and other substances (common in vipers and colubrids) have anticoagulant or procoagulant activity, and may induce ischemic or hemorrhagic strokes. The venom of elapids is rich in neurotoxins affecting the neuromuscular transmission at either presynaptic or postsynaptic levels. The clinical picture of scorpion sting envenoming is dominated by muscle weakness associated with arterial hypertension, cardiac arrythmias, myocarditis, or pulmonary edema. These manifestations occur as the result of release of catecholamines into the bloodstream or due to direct cardiac toxicity of the venom. Cerebrovascular complications have been reported after the sting of the Indian red scorpion. Intracranial hemorrhages occur in the setting of acute increases in arterial blood pressure related to sympathetic overstimulation, and cerebral infarctions are related to either cerebral hypoperfusion, consumption coagulopathy, vasculitis, or cardiogenic brain embolism. Three main syndromes result from spider bite envenoming: latrodectism, loxoscelism, and funnel-web spider envenoming. Latrodectism is related to neurotoxins present in the venom of widow spiders. Most cases present with headache, lethargy, irritability, myalgia, tremor, fasciculation, or ataxia. Loxoscelism is caused by envenoming by spiders of the family Sicariidae. It may present with a stroke due to a severe coagulopathy. The venom of funnel-web spiders also has neurotoxins that stimulate neurotransmitter release, resulting in sensory disturbances and muscle

  14. Presynaptic and postsynaptic effects of the venom of the Australian tiger snake at the neuromuscular junction

    PubMed Central

    Datyner, M. E.; Gage, P. W.

    1973-01-01

    1. Crude venom (TSV) from the Australian tiger snake (Notechis scutatus scutatus) has both presynaptic and postsynaptic effects at the neuromuscular junctions of toads. 2. TSV (50 μg/ml) rapidly blocked indirectly elicited muscle twitches without affecting the compound action potential in the sciatic nerve or twitches elicited by direct stimulation. 3. Low concentrations of the venom (1-10 μg/ml) reduced the amplitude of miniature endplate potentials (m.e.p.ps) and inhibited the depolarization of muscle fibres normally caused by carbachol. It was concluded that a fraction of the venom binds to acetylcholine receptors. 4. The frequency of m.e.p.ps was at first increased by TSV at a concentration of 1 μg/ml. Occasional, high frequency `bursts' of m.e.p.ps were recorded in some preparations. The mean frequency of m.e.p.ps appeared to fall after several hours in the venom. 5. The quantal content of endplate potentials (e.p.ps) was reduced by the venom. With low concentrations (1 μg/ml), an initial increase in quantal content was often seen. When the quantal content was markedly depressed there was no parallel reduction in the amplitude of nerve terminal spikes recorded extracellularly, though a later fall in size and slowing of time course was often seen. 6. There was evidence that TSV eventually changed the normal Poisson characteristics of the spontaneous release of quanta and this may be correlated with electronmicroscopic changes in nerve terminals. 7. Tiger snake antivenene counteracted the postsynaptic, but not the presynaptic effects of TSV when they had developed. PMID:4367126

  15. Profiling the venom gland transcriptomes of Costa Rican snakes by 454 pyrosequencing

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    and A. picadoi, and a closer kinship between A. mexicanus and C. godmani. Conclusions Our comparative next-generation sequencing (NGS) analysis reveals taxon-specific trends governing the formulation of the venom arsenal. Knowledge of the venom proteome provides hints on the translation efficiency of toxin-coding transcripts, contributing thereby to a more accurate interpretation of the transcriptome. The application of NGS to the analysis of snake venom transcriptomes, may represent the tool for opening the door to systems venomics. PMID:21605378

  16. Effects of a low-level semiconductor gallium arsenide laser on local pathological alterations induced by Bothrops moojeni snake venom.

    PubMed

    Aranha de Sousa, Elziliam; Bittencourt, José Adolfo Homobono Machado; Seabra de Oliveira, Nayana Keyla; Correia Henriques, Shayanne Vanessa; dos Santos Picanço, Leide Caroline; Lobato, Camila Pena; Ribeiro, José Renato; Pereira, Washington Luiz Assunção; Carvalho, José Carlos Tavares; da Silva, Jocivânia Oliveira

    2013-10-01

    Antivenom therapy has been ineffective in neutralizing the tissue damage caused by snakebites. Among therapeutic strategies to minimize effects after envenoming, it was hypothesized that a low level laser would reduce complications and reduce the severity of local snake venom effects. In the current study, the effect of a low-level semiconductor gallium arsenide (GaAs) laser on the local pathological alterations induced by B. moojeni snake venom was investigated. The experimental groups consisted of five male mice, each administered either B. moojeni venom (VB), B. moojeni venom + antivenom (VAV), B. moojeni venom + laser (VL), B. moojeni venom + antivenom + laser (VAVL), or sterile saline solution (SSS) alone. Paw oedema was induced by intradermal administration of 0.05 mg kg(-1) of B. moojeni venom and was expressed in mm of directly induced oedema. Mice received by subcutaneous route 0.20 mg kg(-1) of venom for evaluating nociceptive activity and the time (in seconds) spent in licking and biting the injected paw was taken as an indicator of pain response. Inflammatory infiltration was determined by counting the number of leukocytes present in the gastrocnemius muscle after venom injection (0.10 mg kg(-1)). For histological examination of myonecrosis, venom (0.10 mg kg(-1)) was administered intramuscularly. The site of venom injection was irradiated by the GaAs laser and some animals received antivenom intraperitoneally. The results indicated that GaAs laser irradiation can help in reducing some local effects produced by the B. moojeni venom in mice, stimulating phagocytosis, proliferation of myoblasts and the regeneration of muscle fibers.

  17. Contrasting modes and tempos of venom expression evolution in two snake species.

    PubMed

    Margres, Mark J; McGivern, James J; Seavy, Margaret; Wray, Kenneth P; Facente, Jack; Rokyta, Darin R

    2015-01-01

    Selection is predicted to drive diversification within species and lead to local adaptation, but understanding the mechanistic details underlying this process and thus the genetic basis of adaptive evolution requires the mapping of genotype to phenotype. Venom is complex and involves many genes, but the specialization of the venom gland toward toxin production allows specific transcripts to be correlated with specific toxic proteins, establishing a direct link from genotype to phenotype. To determine the extent of expression variation and identify the processes driving patterns of phenotypic diversity, we constructed genotype-phenotype maps and compared range-wide toxin-protein expression variation for two species of snake with nearly identical ranges: the eastern diamondback rattlesnake (Crotalus adamanteus) and the eastern coral snake (Micrurus fulvius). We detected significant expression variation in C. adamanteus, identified the specific loci associated with population differentiation, and found that loci expressed at all levels contributed to this divergence. Contrary to expectations, we found no expression variation in M. fulvius, suggesting that M. fulvius populations are not locally adapted. Our results not only linked expression variation at specific loci to divergence in a polygenic, complex trait but also have extensive conservation and biomedical implications. C. adamanteus is currently a candidate for federal listing under the Endangered Species Act, and the loss of any major population would result in the irrevocable loss of a unique venom phenotype. The lack of variation in M. fulvius has significant biomedical application because our data will assist in the development of effective antivenom for this species.

  18. Clinical profile of venomous snake bites in north Indian Military Hospital

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Jasjit; Bhoi, Sanjeev; Gupta, Vineet; Goel, Ashish

    2008-01-01

    Snakebite is an environmental hazard associated with significant morbidity and mortality. We report a case series of venomous snakebites in a military operational area of north India. Of 33 cases of snake bites presenting to the military hospital, 21 patients were envenomated. The median age of patients was 24 years; all were men. All of the envenomations were neurotoxic in nature. Abdominal pain (91%), headache (86%), dysphagia (86%), ptosis (77%), diplopia (72%), blurred vision (72%), dyspnea (67%), and vomiting (62%) were the predominant clinical presentation. Polyvalent AntiSnakeVenom (ASV) [mean 180 ml; range 90-320 ml] was given to all patients with systemic manifestations, and repeated as needed. Eleven (52%) patients received neostigmine with glycopyrrolate to counter cholinergic effects. Two patients were given ventilatory support. The average time of recovery from envenomation was 16 hours after administration of ASV. All patients recovered without sequelae. Soldiers during military exercise are vulnerable to snakebites. Neurotoxic snakebites predominate in our study and usually present with autonomic features along with headache, abdominal pain, ptosis, diplopia and dysphasia. Preventive measures to minimize snake bites and planned treatment regimens should be emphasized among medical and military personnel deployed in the field operations. PMID:19561985

  19. Why the honey badger don't care: Convergent evolution of venom-targeted nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in mammals that survive venomous snake bites.

    PubMed

    Drabeck, Danielle H; Dean, Antony M; Jansa, Sharon A

    2015-06-01

    Honey badgers (Mellivora capensis) prey upon and survive bites from venomous snakes (Family: Elapidae), but the molecular basis of their venom resistance is unknown. The muscular nicotinic cholinergic receptor (nAChR), targeted by snake α-neurotoxins, has evolved in some venom-resistant mammals to no longer bind these toxins. Through phylogenetic analysis of mammalian nAChR sequences, we show that honey badgers, hedgehogs, and pigs have independently acquired functionally equivalent amino acid replacements in the toxin-binding site of this receptor. These convergent amino acid changes impede toxin binding by introducing a positively charged amino acid in place of an uncharged aromatic residue. In venom-resistant mongooses, different replacements at these same sites are glycosylated, which is thought to disrupt binding through steric effects. Thus, it appears that resistance to snake venom α-neurotoxin has evolved at least four times among mammals through two distinct biochemical mechanisms operating at the same sites on the same receptor. PMID:25796346

  20. Why the honey badger don't care: Convergent evolution of venom-targeted nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in mammals that survive venomous snake bites.

    PubMed

    Drabeck, Danielle H; Dean, Antony M; Jansa, Sharon A

    2015-06-01

    Honey badgers (Mellivora capensis) prey upon and survive bites from venomous snakes (Family: Elapidae), but the molecular basis of their venom resistance is unknown. The muscular nicotinic cholinergic receptor (nAChR), targeted by snake α-neurotoxins, has evolved in some venom-resistant mammals to no longer bind these toxins. Through phylogenetic analysis of mammalian nAChR sequences, we show that honey badgers, hedgehogs, and pigs have independently acquired functionally equivalent amino acid replacements in the toxin-binding site of this receptor. These convergent amino acid changes impede toxin binding by introducing a positively charged amino acid in place of an uncharged aromatic residue. In venom-resistant mongooses, different replacements at these same sites are glycosylated, which is thought to disrupt binding through steric effects. Thus, it appears that resistance to snake venom α-neurotoxin has evolved at least four times among mammals through two distinct biochemical mechanisms operating at the same sites on the same receptor.

  1. Functional variability of snake venom metalloproteinases: adaptive advantages in targeting different prey and implications for human envenomation.

    PubMed

    Bernardoni, Juliana L; Sousa, Leijiane F; Wermelinger, Luciana S; Lopes, Aline S; Prezoto, Benedito C; Serrano, Solange M T; Zingali, Russolina B; Moura-da-Silva, Ana M

    2014-01-01

    Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) are major components in most viperid venoms that induce disturbances in the hemostatic system and tissues of animals envenomated by snakes. These disturbances are involved in human pathology of snake bites and appear to be essential for the capture and digestion of snake's prey and avoidance of predators. SVMPs are a versatile family of venom toxins acting on different hemostatic targets which are present in venoms in distinct structural forms. However, the reason why a large number of different SVMPs are expressed in some venoms is still unclear. In this study, we evaluated the interference of five isolated SVMPs in blood coagulation of humans, birds and small rodents. P-III class SVMPs (fractions Ic, IIb and IIc) possess gelatinolytic and hemorrhagic activities, and, of these, two also show fibrinolytic activity. P-I class SVMPs (fractions IVa and IVb) are only fibrinolytic. P-III class SVMPs reduced clotting time of human plasma. Fraction IIc was characterized as prothrombin activator and fraction Ic as factor X activator. In the absence of Ca2+, a firm clot was observed in chicken blood samples with fractions Ic, IIb and partially with fraction IIc. In contrast, without Ca2+, only fraction IIc was able to induce a firm clot in rat blood. In conclusion, functionally distinct forms of SVMPs were found in B. neuwiedi venom that affect distinct mechanisms in the coagulation system of humans, birds and small rodents. Distinct SVMPs appear to be more specialized to rat or chicken blood, strengthening the current hypothesis that toxin diversity enhances the possibilities of the snakes for hunting different prey or evading different predators. This functional diversity also impacts the complexity of human envenoming since different hemostatic mechanisms will be targeted by SVMPs accounting for the complexity of the response of humans to venoms. PMID:25313513

  2. Functional Variability of Snake Venom Metalloproteinases: Adaptive Advantages in Targeting Different Prey and Implications for Human Envenomation

    PubMed Central

    Bernardoni, Juliana L.; Sousa, Leijiane F.; Wermelinger, Luciana S.; Lopes, Aline S.; Prezoto, Benedito C.; Serrano, Solange M. T.; Zingali, Russolina B.; Moura-da-Silva, Ana M.

    2014-01-01

    Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) are major components in most viperid venoms that induce disturbances in the hemostatic system and tissues of animals envenomated by snakes. These disturbances are involved in human pathology of snake bites and appear to be essential for the capture and digestion of snake's prey and avoidance of predators. SVMPs are a versatile family of venom toxins acting on different hemostatic targets which are present in venoms in distinct structural forms. However, the reason why a large number of different SVMPs are expressed in some venoms is still unclear. In this study, we evaluated the interference of five isolated SVMPs in blood coagulation of humans, birds and small rodents. P-III class SVMPs (fractions Ic, IIb and IIc) possess gelatinolytic and hemorrhagic activities, and, of these, two also show fibrinolytic activity. P-I class SVMPs (fractions IVa and IVb) are only fibrinolytic. P-III class SVMPs reduced clotting time of human plasma. Fraction IIc was characterized as prothrombin activator and fraction Ic as factor X activator. In the absence of Ca2+, a firm clot was observed in chicken blood samples with fractions Ic, IIb and partially with fraction IIc. In contrast, without Ca2+, only fraction IIc was able to induce a firm clot in rat blood. In conclusion, functionally distinct forms of SVMPs were found in B. neuwiedi venom that affect distinct mechanisms in the coagulation system of humans, birds and small rodents. Distinct SVMPs appear to be more specialized to rat or chicken blood, strengthening the current hypothesis that toxin diversity enhances the possibilities of the snakes for hunting different prey or evading different predators. This functional diversity also impacts the complexity of human envenoming since different hemostatic mechanisms will be targeted by SVMPs accounting for the complexity of the response of humans to venoms. PMID:25313513

  3. Development of a polymerase chain reaction to distinguish monocellate cobra (Naja khouthia) bites from other common Thai snake species, using both venom extracts and bite-site swabs.

    PubMed

    Suntrarachun, S; Pakmanee, N; Tirawatnapong, T; Chanhome, L; Sitprija, V

    2001-07-01

    A PCR technique was used in this study to identify and distinguish monocellate cobra snake bites using snake venoms and swab specimens from snake bite-sites in mice from bites by other common Thai snakes. The sequences of nucleotide primers were selected for the cobrotoxin-encoding gene from the Chinese cobra (Naja atra) since the sequences of monocellate cobra (Naja kaouthia) venom are still unknown. However, the 113-bp fragment of cDNA of the cobrotoxin-encoding gene was detected in the monocellate cobra venom using RT-PCR. This gene was not found in the venoms of Ophiophagus hannah (king cobra), Bungarus fasciatus (banded krait), Daboia russelii siamensis (Siamese Russell's Viper, and Calloselasma rhodostoma (Malayan pit viper). Moreover, direct PCR could detect a 665-bp fragment of the cobrotoxin-encoding gene in the monocellate cobra venom but not the other snake venoms. Likewise, this gene was only observed in swab specimens from cobra snake bite-sites in mice. This is the first report demonstrating the ability of PCR to detect the cobrotoxin-encoding gene from snake venoms and swab specimens. Further studies are required for identification of this and other snakes from the bite-sites on human skin.

  4. Comparison of the adjuvant activity of aluminum hydroxide and calcium phosphate on the antibody response towards Bothrops asper snake venom.

    PubMed

    Olmedo, Hidekel; Herrera, María; Rojas, Leonardo; Villalta, Mauren; Vargas, Mariángela; Leiguez, Elbio; Teixeira, Catarina; Estrada, Ricardo; Gutiérrez, José María; León, Guillermo; Montero, Mavis L

    2014-01-01

    The adjuvanticity of aluminum hydroxide and calcium phosphate on the antibody response in mice towards the venom of the snake Bothrops asper was studied. It was found that, in vitro, most of the venom proteins are similarly adsorbed by both mineral salts, with the exception of some basic phospholipases A2, which are better adsorbed by calcium phosphate. After injection, the adjuvants promoted a slow release of the venom, as judged by the lack of acute toxicity when lethal doses of venom were administered to mice. Leukocyte recruitment induced by the venom was enhanced when it was adsorbed on both mineral salts; however, venom adsorbed on calcium phosphate induced a higher antibody response towards all tested HPLC fractions of the venom. On the other hand, co-precipitation of venom with calcium phosphate was the best strategy for increasing: (1) the capacity of the salt to couple venom proteins in vitro; (2) the venom ability to induce leukocyte recruitment; (3) phagocytosis by macrophages; and (4) a host antibody response. These findings suggest that the chemical nature is not the only one determining factor of the adjuvant activity of mineral salts. PMID:23506358

  5. Molecular modeling and snake venom phospholipase A2 inhibition by phenolic compounds: Structure-activity relationship.

    PubMed

    Alam, Md Iqbal; Alam, Mohammed A; Alam, Ozair; Nargotra, Amit; Taneja, Subhash Chandra; Koul, Surrinder

    2016-05-23

    In our earlier study, we have reported that a phenolic compound 2-hydroxy-4-methoxybenzaldehyde from Janakia arayalpatra root extract was active against Viper and Cobra envenomations. Based on the structure of this natural product, libraries of synthetic structurally variant phenolic compounds were studied through molecular docking on the venom protein. To validate the activity of eight selected compounds, we have tested them in in vivo and in vitro models. The compound 21 (2-hydroxy-3-methoxy benzaldehyde), 22 (2-hydroxy-4-methoxybenzaldehyde) and 35 (2-hydroxy-3-methoxybenzylalcohol) were found to be active against venom-induced pathophysiological changes. The compounds 20, 15 and 35 displayed maximum anti-hemorrhagic, anti-lethal and PLA2 inhibitory activity respectively. In terms of SAR, the presence of a formyl group in conjunction with a phenolic group was seen as a significant contributor towards increasing the antivenom activity. The above observations confirmed the anti-venom activity of the phenolic compounds which needs to be further investigated for the development of new anti-snake venom leads. PMID:26986086

  6. Hemorrhage Caused by Snake Venom Metalloproteinases: A Journey of Discovery and Understanding †

    PubMed Central

    Gutiérrez, José María; Escalante, Teresa; Rucavado, Alexandra; Herrera, Cristina

    2016-01-01

    The historical development of discoveries and conceptual frames for understanding the hemorrhagic activity induced by viperid snake venoms and by hemorrhagic metalloproteinases (SVMPs) present in these venoms is reviewed. Histological and ultrastructural tools allowed the identification of the capillary network as the main site of action of SVMPs. After years of debate, biochemical developments demonstrated that all hemorrhagic toxins in viperid venoms are zinc-dependent metalloproteinases. Hemorrhagic SVMPs act by initially hydrolyzing key substrates at the basement membrane (BM) of capillaries. This degradation results in the weakening of the mechanical stability of the capillary wall, which becomes distended owing of the action of the hemodynamic biophysical forces operating in the circulation. As a consequence, the capillary wall is disrupted and extravasation occurs. SVMPs do not induce rapid toxicity to endothelial cells, and the pathological effects described in these cells in vivo result from the mechanical action of these hemodynamic forces. Experimental evidence suggests that degradation of type IV collagen, and perhaps also perlecan, is the key event in the onset of microvessel damage. It is necessary to study this phenomenon from a holistic, systemic perspective in which the action of other venom components is also taken into consideration. PMID:27023608

  7. Hemorrhage Caused by Snake Venom Metalloproteinases: A Journey of Discovery and Understanding.

    PubMed

    Gutiérrez, José María; Escalante, Teresa; Rucavado, Alexandra; Herrera, Cristina

    2016-03-26

    The historical development of discoveries and conceptual frames for understanding the hemorrhagic activity induced by viperid snake venoms and by hemorrhagic metalloproteinases (SVMPs) present in these venoms is reviewed. Histological and ultrastructural tools allowed the identification of the capillary network as the main site of action of SVMPs. After years of debate, biochemical developments demonstrated that all hemorrhagic toxins in viperid venoms are zinc-dependent metalloproteinases. Hemorrhagic SVMPs act by initially hydrolyzing key substrates at the basement membrane (BM) of capillaries. This degradation results in the weakening of the mechanical stability of the capillary wall, which becomes distended owing of the action of the hemodynamic biophysical forces operating in the circulation. As a consequence, the capillary wall is disrupted and extravasation occurs. SVMPs do not induce rapid toxicity to endothelial cells, and the pathological effects described in these cells in vivo result from the mechanical action of these hemodynamic forces. Experimental evidence suggests that degradation of type IV collagen, and perhaps also perlecan, is the key event in the onset of microvessel damage. It is necessary to study this phenomenon from a holistic, systemic perspective in which the action of other venom components is also taken into consideration.

  8. Hemorrhage Caused by Snake Venom Metalloproteinases: A Journey of Discovery and Understanding.

    PubMed

    Gutiérrez, José María; Escalante, Teresa; Rucavado, Alexandra; Herrera, Cristina

    2016-04-01

    The historical development of discoveries and conceptual frames for understanding the hemorrhagic activity induced by viperid snake venoms and by hemorrhagic metalloproteinases (SVMPs) present in these venoms is reviewed. Histological and ultrastructural tools allowed the identification of the capillary network as the main site of action of SVMPs. After years of debate, biochemical developments demonstrated that all hemorrhagic toxins in viperid venoms are zinc-dependent metalloproteinases. Hemorrhagic SVMPs act by initially hydrolyzing key substrates at the basement membrane (BM) of capillaries. This degradation results in the weakening of the mechanical stability of the capillary wall, which becomes distended owing of the action of the hemodynamic biophysical forces operating in the circulation. As a consequence, the capillary wall is disrupted and extravasation occurs. SVMPs do not induce rapid toxicity to endothelial cells, and the pathological effects described in these cells in vivo result from the mechanical action of these hemodynamic forces. Experimental evidence suggests that degradation of type IV collagen, and perhaps also perlecan, is the key event in the onset of microvessel damage. It is necessary to study this phenomenon from a holistic, systemic perspective in which the action of other venom components is also taken into consideration. PMID:27023608

  9. Correlation between annual activity patterns of venomous snakes and rural people in the Niger Delta, southern Nigeria

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Venomous snakes are among the most serious health hazards for rural people in tropical regions of the world. Herein we compare the monthly activity patterns of eight venomous snake species (Elapidae and Viperidae) with those of rural people in the Niger Delta area of southern Nigeria, in order to identify the periods of highest potential risk for persons, and the human group actually at greater risk of snakebite. Results We documented that above-ground activity of all venomous snakes peaked in the wet season, and that high snake activity and high human activity were most highly correlated between April and August. In addition, we documented that women and teenagers were at relatively higher risk of encountering a venomous snake than adult males, despite they are less often in the field than men. Conclusions Our results suggest that future programs devoted to mitigate the social and health effects of snakebites in the Niger Delta region should involve especially women and teenagers, with ad-hoc education projects if appropriate. We urge that international organizations working on social and health problems in the developing world, such as IRD, DFID, UNDP, should provide advice through specific programs targeted at especially these categories which have been highlighted in comparatively potential higher threat from snakebites than adult men. PMID:23849681

  10. Identification of New Snake Venom Metalloproteinase Inhibitors Using Compound Screening and Rational Peptide Design

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    The majority of snakebite envenomations in Central America are caused by the viperid species Bothrops asper, whose venom contains a high proportion of zinc-dependent metalloproteinases that play a relevant role in the pathogenesis of hemorrhage characteristic of these envenomations. Broad metalloproteinase inhibitors, such as the peptidomimetic hydroxamate Batimastat, have been shown to inhibit snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMP). However, the difficulty in having open public access to Batimastat and similar molecules highlights the need to design new inhibitors of SVMPs that could be applied in the treatment of snakebite envenomations. We have chosen the SVMP BaP1 as a model to search for new inhibitors using different strategies, that is, screening of the Prestwick Chemical Library and rational peptide design. Results from these approaches provide clues on the structural requirements for efficient BaP1 inhibition and pave the way for the design of new inhibitors of SVMP. PMID:24900507

  11. Identification of new snake venom metalloproteinase inhibitors using compound screening and rational Peptide design.

    PubMed

    Villalta-Romero, Fabián; Gortat, Anna; Herrera, Andrés E; Arguedas, Rebeca; Quesada, Javier; de Melo, Robson Lopes; Calvete, Juan J; Montero, Mavis; Murillo, Renato; Rucavado, Alexandra; Gutiérrez, José María; Pérez-Payá, Enrique

    2012-07-12

    The majority of snakebite envenomations in Central America are caused by the viperid species Bothrops asper, whose venom contains a high proportion of zinc-dependent metalloproteinases that play a relevant role in the pathogenesis of hemorrhage characteristic of these envenomations. Broad metalloproteinase inhibitors, such as the peptidomimetic hydroxamate Batimastat, have been shown to inhibit snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMP). However, the difficulty in having open public access to Batimastat and similar molecules highlights the need to design new inhibitors of SVMPs that could be applied in the treatment of snakebite envenomations. We have chosen the SVMP BaP1 as a model to search for new inhibitors using different strategies, that is, screening of the Prestwick Chemical Library and rational peptide design. Results from these approaches provide clues on the structural requirements for efficient BaP1 inhibition and pave the way for the design of new inhibitors of SVMP. PMID:24900507

  12. Isolation and characterization of three Ca2+-dependent beta-galactoside-specific lectins from snake venoms.

    PubMed Central

    Gartner, T K; Ogilvie, M L

    1984-01-01

    Three lactose-inhibited lectins from the venoms of the snakes Agkistrodon contortrix contortrix (southern copperhead), Ancistrodon piscivorous leukostoma (western cottonmouth moccasin) and Crotalus atrox (western diamondback rattlesnake) have been isolated and newly characterized. The three lectins are similar to thrombolectin, a lectin isolated from the venom of Bothrops atrox (fer-de-lance) (Gartner, Stocker & Williams, 1980), with regard to sugar specificity, Mr, Ca2+ requirements and sensitivity to reducing agents. Each lectin is a dimer (Mr 28 000) consisting of monomers (Mr 14 000) indistinguishable on sodium dodecyl sulphate/polyacrylamide-gel electrophoresis. Haemagglutination activity is dependent on the presence of Ca2+ and is inhibited by reducing agents. The lectins are not identical and can be distinguished on the basis of relative affinities for inhibiting sugars, isoelectric points and immunoprecipitation assays using anti-(cottonmouth lectin) serum. Images Fig. 1. Fig. 2. Fig. 4. Fig. 5. PMID:6391472

  13. Viper venom induced inflammation with Montivipera xanthina (Gray, 1849) and the anti-snake venom activities of Artemisia absinthium L. in rat.

    PubMed

    Nalbantsoy, Ayse; Erel, Sura Baykan; Köksal, Cinel; Göçmen, Bayram; Yıldız, Mehmet Zülfü; Karabay Yavaşoğlu, Nefise Ülkü

    2013-04-01

    The present study was conducted to explore the characterization of Montivipera xanthina crude venom partially by in vitro and in vivo and the anti-snake venom activities of Artemisia absinthium L. in comparison with carrageenan-induced acute inflammation model in rats. The LD50 value was estimated as 8.78 mg/kg within 24 h by different venom doses administrated intraperitoneally in mice. The IC50 value was 0.43 ± 0.18 μg/ml after 48 h treatment while the calculated value was 0.73 ± 0.10 μg/ml for the culture media totally refreshed after 2 h treatment with venom. Wistar rats were treated intraperitoneally with A. absinthium extract, 30 min before venom or carrageenan was injected subplantarly into the left hind paw. Intraperitoneal administration of 25 and 50 mg/kg extract was inhibited venom induced paw swelling at 0.5, 1, 2 and 3 h (p < 0.05) while 12.5, 25 and 50 mg/kg extract treatment was inhibited carrageenan-induced paw swelling at 2, 3, 4 and 5 h (p < 0.05). In conclusion, the in vivo toxicity and inflammatory actions and in vitro cytotoxic actions of crude M. xanthina venom were performed as a first report and inhibition of venom-induced inflammation by methanolic extract of A. absinthium was described.

  14. Recombinant expression and affinity purification of snake venom gland parvalbumin in Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Jia, Ying; Pérez, John C

    2009-07-01

    Parvalbumins (PV) are small, acidic, water soluble and calcium-binding proteins generally present in muscular and nervous tissues. In the present study, we identified and characterized a cDNA clone encoding PV, named AplPV, from a snake (Agkistrodon piscivorus leucostoma) venom gland cDNA library. AplPV belongs to EF-hand proteins with six alpha-helices constituting three EF-hand domains. The deduced amino acid sequence of AplPV is 91% and 68% identical to the previously characterized PVs of Boa constrictor and Cyprinus carpio, respectively. The full-length cDNA was subcloned into the expression vector pGEX and transformed into Escherichia coli (E.coli) to produce recombinant protein. The bacterially expressed GST-AplPV fusion protein was highly expressed, and effectively purified by Glutathione-Sepharose affinity chromatography. A high concentration of thrombin protease specifically cleaved and removed the GST tag from fusion protein, and further purified by Benzamidine column for removal of thrombin protease. As a result, the 12 kDa AplPV recombinant protein alone was purified. To investigate the tissue-specific biological occurrence of AplPV, a polyclonal antibody (anti-AplPV-antibody) was raised against GST-AplPV fusion protein in rabbit. Western blot analysis revealed that immunoreactive bands were exhibited in both recombinant protein and samples of venom glands, but not in any crude venom. This specific occurrence indicates a specialized function of AplPV in snake venom glands.

  15. Snake venom components enhance pain upon subcutaneous injection: an initial examination of spinal cord mediators.

    PubMed

    Chacur, Marucia; Gutiérrez, José Maria; Milligan, Erin D; Wieseler-Frank, Julie; Britto, Luiz R G; Maier, Steven F; Watkins, Linda R; Cury, Yara

    2004-09-01

    Snakebites are a relevant public health problem in Central and South America. Snake bite envenomations cause intense pain, not relieved by anti-venom. The fangs of many species are short, causing subcutaneous injection. Fangs of larger species inflict subcutaneous or intramuscular envenomation. To understand pain induced by subcutaneous venom, this study examined spinal mechanisms involved in pain-enhancing effects of subcutaneous Lys49 and Asp49 secretory phospholipase-A(2) (sPLA2), two components of Bothrops asper snake venom showing highly different enzymatic activities. Unilateral intraplantar sPLA2-Lys49 (catalytically inactive) or sPLA2-Asp49 (catalytically active) into rat hindpaws each induced mechanical hyperalgesia (Randall-Selitto test), whereas only catalytically active sPLA2-Asp49 caused mechanical allodynia (von Frey test). Effects induced by both sPLA2s were inhibited by intrathecal fluorocitrate, a reversible glial metabolic inhibitor. In support, immunohistochemical analysis revealed activation of dorsal horn astrocytes and microglia after intraplantar injection of either sPLA2. Spinal proinflammatory cytokines, nitric oxide, and prostanoids each appear to be involved in the pain-enhancing effects of these sPLA2s. Blockade of interleukin-1 (IL1) inhibited hyperalgesia induced by both sPLA2s, while leaving allodynia unaffected. Blockade of tumor necrosis factor reduced responses to sPLA2-Asp49. An inhibitor of neuronal nitric oxide synthase, 7-nitroindazole (7-NI), inhibited hyperalgesia induced by both sPLA2s, without interfering with allodynia induced by sPLA2-Asp49. On the other hand, L-N(6)-(1-iminoethyl)lysine (L-NI), an inhibitor of the inducible nitric oxide synthase, did not alter any sPLA2-induced effect. Lastly, celecoxib, an inhibitor of cyclooxygenase-2, attenuated sPLA2 actions. These data provide the first evidence of spinal mediators involved in pain facilitation induced by subcutaneous venoms.

  16. Efficacy of Indian polyvalent snake antivenoms against Sri Lankan snake venoms: lethality studies or clinically focussed in vitro studies

    PubMed Central

    Maduwage, Kalana; Silva, Anjana; O’Leary, Margaret A.; Hodgson, Wayne C.; Isbister, Geoffrey K.

    2016-01-01

    In vitro antivenom efficacy studies were compared to rodent lethality studies to test two Indian snake antivenoms (VINS and BHARAT) against four Sri Lankan snakes. In vitro efficacy was tested at venom concentrations consistent with human envenoming. Efficacy was compared statistically for one batch from each manufacturer where multiple vials were available. In binding studies EC50 for all VINS antivenoms were less than BHARAT for D. russelii [553 μg/mL vs. 1371 μg/mL;p = 0.016), but were greater for VINS antivenoms compared to BHARAT for N. naja [336 μg/mL vs. 70 μg/mL;p < 0.0001]. EC50 of both antivenoms was only slighty different for E. carinatus and B. caeruleus. For procoagulant activity neutralisation, the EC50 was lower for VINS compared to BHARAT - 60 μg/mL vs. 176 μg/mL (p < 0.0001) for Russell’s viper and 357 μg/mL vs. 6906μg/mL (p < 0.0001) for Saw-scaled viper. Only VINS antivenom neutralized in vitro neurotoxicity of krait venom. Both antivenoms partially neutralized cobra and didn’t neutralize Russell’s viper neurotoxicity. Lethality studies found no statistically significant difference in ED50 values between VINS and BHARAT antivenoms. VINS antivenoms appeared superior to BHARAT at concentrations equivalent to administering 10 vials antivenom, based on binding and neutralisation studies. Lethality studies were inconsistent suggesting rodent death may not measure relevant efficacy outcomes in humans. PMID:27231196

  17. Efficacy of Indian polyvalent snake antivenoms against Sri Lankan snake venoms: lethality studies or clinically focussed in vitro studies.

    PubMed

    Maduwage, Kalana; Silva, Anjana; O'Leary, Margaret A; Hodgson, Wayne C; Isbister, Geoffrey K

    2016-01-01

    In vitro antivenom efficacy studies were compared to rodent lethality studies to test two Indian snake antivenoms (VINS and BHARAT) against four Sri Lankan snakes. In vitro efficacy was tested at venom concentrations consistent with human envenoming. Efficacy was compared statistically for one batch from each manufacturer where multiple vials were available. In binding studies EC50 for all VINS antivenoms were less than BHARAT for D. russelii [553 μg/mL vs. 1371 μg/mL;p = 0.016), but were greater for VINS antivenoms compared to BHARAT for N. naja [336 μg/mL vs. 70 μg/mL;p < 0.0001]. EC50 of both antivenoms was only slighty different for E. carinatus and B. caeruleus. For procoagulant activity neutralisation, the EC50 was lower for VINS compared to BHARAT - 60 μg/mL vs. 176 μg/mL (p < 0.0001) for Russell's viper and 357 μg/mL vs. 6906μg/mL (p < 0.0001) for Saw-scaled viper. Only VINS antivenom neutralized in vitro neurotoxicity of krait venom. Both antivenoms partially neutralized cobra and didn't neutralize Russell's viper neurotoxicity. Lethality studies found no statistically significant difference in ED50 values between VINS and BHARAT antivenoms. VINS antivenoms appeared superior to BHARAT at concentrations equivalent to administering 10 vials antivenom, based on binding and neutralisation studies. Lethality studies were inconsistent suggesting rodent death may not measure relevant efficacy outcomes in humans. PMID:27231196

  18. Use of microarrays for investigating the subtoxic effects of snake venoms: insights into venom-induced apoptosis in human umbilical vein endothelial cells.

    PubMed

    Gallagher, Paul G; Bao, Yongde; Serrano, Solange M T; Kamiguti, Aura S; Theakston, R David G; Fox, Jay W

    2003-03-01

    The pathological effects of only a small percentage of the total number of protein components of snake venoms are well documented, yet this knowledge has led to a general understanding of the physiological consequences of snake venom poisoning. The aim of this study was to assess the effect of subpathological levels of Crotalus atrox (Western diamondback rattlesnake) and Bothrops jararaca (Jararaca) snake venoms on the gene expression profile of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC) in culture. Analysis of the data demonstrated that HUVECs treated with C. atrox venom had 33 genes up-regulated with significant fold changes of 1.5 or greater compared to untreated control cells. Ten genes were down-regulated with 1.5 or greater fold changes. In cells treated with B. jararaca venom, 33 genes were observed to be up-regulated and 11 genes were down-regulated with a fold change of 1.5 or more. More than half of the up-regulated genes and approximately half of the down-regulated genes detected in cells treated with the venoms were found in both data sets underscoring both the similarities and differences between the two venoms. Ontological categorization of the up-regulated genes from endothelial cells treated with either C. atrox or B. jararaca venom gave the cell growth/maintenance and signal transducer groups as having the most members. The ontology of the down-regulated genes from both venom-treated cell samples was more varied but interestingly, the predominant ontology class was also cell growth/maintenance. Many of the up-regulated genes are involved in the Fas ligand/TNF-alpha receptor apoptotic pathway. In summary, these experiments demonstrate the power of gene expression profiling to explore the subtoxic effects of venoms on gene expression and highlight its potential for the discovery of novel insights into a variety of biological processes and signal transduction pathways. Furthermore, these studies illustrate the subtle functional differences between

  19. Proteomic and Glycoproteomic Profilings Reveal That Post-translational Modifications of Toxins Contribute to Venom Phenotype in Snakes.

    PubMed

    Andrade-Silva, Débora; Zelanis, André; Kitano, Eduardo S; Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio L M; Reis, Marcelo S; Lopes, Aline S; Serrano, Solange M T

    2016-08-01

    Snake venoms are biological weapon systems composed of secreted proteins and peptides that are used for immobilizing or killing prey. Although post-translational modifications are widely investigated because of their importance in many biological phenomena, we currently still have little understanding of how protein glycosylation impacts the variation and stability of venom proteomes. To address these issues, here we characterized the venom proteomes of seven Bothrops snakes using a shotgun proteomics strategy. Moreover, we compared the electrophoretic profiles of native and deglycosylated venoms and, in order to assess their subproteomes of glycoproteins, we identified the proteins with affinity for three lectins with different saccharide specificities and their putative glycosylation sites. As proteinases are abundant glycosylated toxins, we examined the effect of N-deglycosylation on their catalytic activities and show that the proteinases of the seven venoms were similarly affected by removal of N-glycans. Moreover, we prospected putative glycosylation sites of transcripts of a B. jararaca venom gland data set and detected toxin family related patterns of glycosylation. Based on our global analysis, we report that Bothrops venom proteomes and glycoproteomes contain a core of components that markedly define their composition, which is conserved upon evolution in parallel to other molecular markers that determine their phylogenetic classification. PMID:27297130

  20. Fatal presumed tiger snake (Notechis scutatus) envenomation in a cat with measurement of venom and antivenom concentration.

    PubMed

    Padula, Andrew M; Winkel, Kenneth D

    2016-04-01

    A fatal outcome of a presumed tiger snake (Notechis scutatus) envenomation in a cat is described. Detectable venom components and antivenom concentrations in serum from clotted and centrifuged whole blood and urine were measured using a sensitive and specific ELISA. The cat presented in a paralysed state with a markedly elevated serum CK but with normal clotting times. The cat was treated with intravenous fluids and received two vials of equine whole IgG bivalent (tiger and brown snake) antivenom. Despite treatment the cat's condition did not improve and it died 36 h post-presentation. Serum concentration of detectable tiger snake venom components at initial presentation was 311 ng/mL and urine 832 ng/mL, this declined to non-detectable levels in serum 15-min after intravenous antivenom. Urine concentration of detectable tiger snake venom components declined to 22 ng/mL at post-mortem. Measurement of equine anti-tiger snake venom specific antibody demonstrated a concentration of 7.2 Units/mL in serum at post-mortem which had declined from an initial high of 13 Units/mL at 15-min post-antivenom. The ELISA data demonstrated the complete clearance of detectable venom components from serum with no recurrence in the post-mortem samples. Antivenom concentrations in serum at initial presentation were at least 100-fold higher than theoretically required to neutralise the circulating concentrations of venom. Despite the fatal outcome in this case it was concluded that this was unlikely that is was due to insufficient antivenom.

  1. Fatal presumed tiger snake (Notechis scutatus) envenomation in a cat with measurement of venom and antivenom concentration.

    PubMed

    Padula, Andrew M; Winkel, Kenneth D

    2016-04-01

    A fatal outcome of a presumed tiger snake (Notechis scutatus) envenomation in a cat is described. Detectable venom components and antivenom concentrations in serum from clotted and centrifuged whole blood and urine were measured using a sensitive and specific ELISA. The cat presented in a paralysed state with a markedly elevated serum CK but with normal clotting times. The cat was treated with intravenous fluids and received two vials of equine whole IgG bivalent (tiger and brown snake) antivenom. Despite treatment the cat's condition did not improve and it died 36 h post-presentation. Serum concentration of detectable tiger snake venom components at initial presentation was 311 ng/mL and urine 832 ng/mL, this declined to non-detectable levels in serum 15-min after intravenous antivenom. Urine concentration of detectable tiger snake venom components declined to 22 ng/mL at post-mortem. Measurement of equine anti-tiger snake venom specific antibody demonstrated a concentration of 7.2 Units/mL in serum at post-mortem which had declined from an initial high of 13 Units/mL at 15-min post-antivenom. The ELISA data demonstrated the complete clearance of detectable venom components from serum with no recurrence in the post-mortem samples. Antivenom concentrations in serum at initial presentation were at least 100-fold higher than theoretically required to neutralise the circulating concentrations of venom. Despite the fatal outcome in this case it was concluded that this was unlikely that is was due to insufficient antivenom. PMID:26836396

  2. Discovery of toxin-encoding genes from the false viper Macropisthodon rudis, a rear-fanged snake, by transcriptome analysis of venom gland.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhixiao; Zhang, Xi; Hu, Tingsong; Zhou, Weiguo; Cui, Qinghua; Tian, Jing; Zheng, Ying; Fan, Quanshui

    2015-11-01

    Although rear-fanged snakes are often considered as non-threatening to humans, some species are lethal or medically hazardous. The toxin components and bioactivities of front-fanged snakes have been extensively studied; however, only limited research has explored the venoms of rear-fanged snakes. The false viper, Macropisthodon rudis, is widespread in southern China, but little is known about the toxins that this snake produces. Here, we analyzed the transcriptome of the venom gland of M. rudis using high-throughput sequencing with an illumina HiSeq 2000. The raw data were assembled and annotated using public databases. The Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathways and gene ontology (GO) were analyzed. Using sequence comparisons, snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) and a phosphodiesterase (PDE) were discovered in the venom gland of M. rudis.

  3. Biochemical and monolayer characterization of Tunisian snake venom phospholipases.

    PubMed

    Baîram, Douja; Aissa, Imen; Louati, Hanen; Othman, Houcemeddine; Abdelkafi-Koubaa, Zaineb; Krayem, Najeh; El Ayeb, Mohamed; Srairi-Abid, Najet; Marrakchi, Naziha; Gargouri, Youssef

    2016-08-01

    The present study investigated the kinetic and interfacial properties of two secreted phospholipases isolated from Tunisian vipers'venoms: Cerastes cerastes (CC-PLA2) and Macrovipera lebetina transmediterranea (MVL-PLA2). Results show that these enzymes have great different abilities to bind and hydrolyse phospholipids. Using egg-yolk emulsions as substrate at pH 8, we found that MVL-PLA2 has a specific activity of 1473U/mg at 37°C in presence of 1mM CaCl2. Furthermore the interfacial kinetic and binding data indicate that MVL-PLA2 has a preference to the zwitterionic phosphatidylcholine monolayers (PC). Conversely, CC-PLA2 was found to be able to hydrolyse preferentially negatively charged head group phospholipids (PG and PS) and exhibits a specific activity 9 times more important (13333U/mg at 60°C in presence of 3mM CaCl2). Molecular models of both CC-PLA2 and MVL-PLA2 3D structures have been built and their electrostatic potentials surfaces have been calculated. A marked anisotropy of the overall electrostatic charge distribution leads to a significantly difference in the dipole moment intensity between the two enzymes explaining the great differences in catalytic and binding properties, which seems to be governed by the electrostatic and hydrophobic forces operative at the surface of the two phospholipases. PMID:27164498

  4. Identification and characterization of B-cell epitopes of 3FTx and PLA(2) toxins from Micrurus corallinus snake venom.

    PubMed

    Castro, K L; Duarte, C G; Ramos, H R; Machado de Avila, R A; Schneider, F S; Oliveira, D; Freitas, C F; Kalapothakis, E; Ho, P L; Chávez-Olortegui, C

    2015-01-01

    The main goal of this work was to develop a strategy to identify B-cell epitopes on four different three finger toxins (3FTX) and one phospholipase A2 (PLA2) from Micrurus corallinus snake venom. 3FTx and PLA2 are highly abundant components in Elapidic venoms and are the major responsibles for the toxicity observed in envenomation by coral snakes. Overlapping peptides from the sequence of each toxin were prepared by SPOT method and three different anti-elapidic sera were used to map the epitopes. After immunogenicity analysis of the spot-reactive peptides by EPITOPIA, a computational method, nine sequences from the five toxins were chemically synthesized and antigenically and immunogenically characterized. All the peptides were used together as immunogens in rabbits, delivered with Freund's adjuvant for a first cycle of immunization and Montanide in the second. A good antibody response against individual synthetic peptides and M. corallinus venom was achieved. Anti-peptide IgGs were also cross-reactive against Micrurus frontalis and Micrurus lemniscatus crude venoms. In addition, anti-peptide IgGs inhibits the lethal and phospholipasic activities of M. corallinus crude venom. Our results provide a rational basis to the identification of neutralizing epitopes on coral snake toxins and show that their corresponding synthetic peptides could improve the generation of immuno-therapeutics. The use of synthetic peptide for immunization is a reasonable approach, since it enables poly-specificity, low risk of toxic effects and large scale production.

  5. Toxicity of Bothrops sp snake venoms from Ecuador and preclinical assessment of the neutralizing efficacy of a polyspecific antivenom from Costa Rica.

    PubMed

    Laines, Johana; Segura, Álvaro; Villalta, Mauren; Herrera, María; Vargas, Mariángela; Alvarez, Gladys; Gutiérrez, José María; León, Guillermo

    2014-09-01

    The toxicological profile of the venoms of the snakes Bothrops asper and Bothrops atrox from Ecuador was investigated, together with the venom of a population of B. asper formerly classified as 'Bothrops xanthogrammus'. The three venoms exerted lethal, hemorrhagic, myotoxic, coagulant and defibrinogenating effects, in agreement with the characteristic toxicological profile of Bothrops sp venoms. A polyspecific antivenom (bothropic-crotalic-lachesic) manufactured in Costa Rica was assessed for its preclinical efficacy against the toxic activities of these Ecuadorian venoms. Antivenom was effective in the neutralization of the five activities tested in the three venoms. These observations are in agreement with previous reports on the extensive cross-reactivity and paraspecific neutralization of antivenoms manufactured in Latin America against the venoms of Bothrops sp snakes. PMID:24950051

  6. Respiratory Effects of Sarafotoxins from the Venom of Different Atractaspis Genus Snake Species

    PubMed Central

    Malaquin, Stéphanie; Bayat, Sam; Abou Arab, Osama; Mourier, Gilles; Lorne, Emmanuel; Kamel, Saïd; Dupont, Hervé; Ducancel, Frédéric; Mahjoub, Yazine

    2016-01-01

    Sarafotoxins (SRTX) are endothelin-like peptides extracted from the venom of snakes belonging to the Atractaspididae family. A recent in vivo study on anesthetized and ventilated animals showed that sarafotoxin-b (SRTX-b), extracted from the venom of Atractaspis engaddensis, decreases cardiac output by inducing left ventricular dysfunction while sarafotoxin-m (SRTX-m), extracted from the venom of Atractaspis microlepidota microlepidota, induces right ventricular dysfunction with increased airway pressure. The aim of the present experimental study was to compare the respiratory effects of SRTX-m and SRTX-b. Male Wistar rats were anesthetized, tracheotomized and mechanically ventilated. They received either a 1 LD50 IV bolus of SRTX-b (n = 5) or 1 LD50 of SRTX-m (n = 5). The low-frequency forced oscillation technique was used to measure respiratory impedance. Airway resistance (Raw), parenchymal damping (G) and elastance (H) were determined from impedance data, before and 5 min after SRTX injection. SRTX-m and SRTX-b injections induced acute hypoxia and metabolic acidosis with an increased anion gap. Both toxins markedly increased Raw, G and H, but with a much greater effect of SRTX-b on H, which may have been due to pulmonary edema in addition to bronchoconstriction. Therefore, despite their structural analogy, these two toxins exert different effects on respiratory function. These results emphasize the role of the C-terminal extension in the in vivo effect of these toxins. PMID:27409637

  7. Nomenclatural instability in the venomous snakes of the Bothrops complex: Implications in toxinology and public health.

    PubMed

    Carrasco, Paola Andrea; Venegas, Pablo Javier; Chaparro, Juan Carlos; Scrocchi, Gustavo José

    2016-09-01

    Since nomenclature is intended to reflect the evolutionary history of organisms, advances in our understanding of historical relationships may lead to changes in classification, and thus potentially in taxonomic instability. An unstable nomenclature for medically important animals like venomous snakes is of concern, and its implications in venom/antivenom research and snakebite treatment have been extensively discussed since the 90´s. The taxonomy of the pitvipers of the Bothrops complex has been historically problematic and different genus-level rearrangements were proposed to rectify the long-standing paraphyly of the group. Here we review the toxinological literature on the Bothrops complex to estimate the impact of recent proposals of classification in non-systematic research. This assessment revealed moderate levels of nomenclatural instability in the last five years, and the recurrence of some practices discussed in previous studies regarding the use of classifications and the information provided about the origin of venom samples. We briefly comment on a few examples and the implications of different proposals of classifications for the Bothrops complex. The aim of this review is to contribute to the reduction of adverse effects of current taxonomic instability in a group of medical importance in the Americas. PMID:27242040

  8. Isolation and cloning of a metalloproteinase from king cobra snake venom.

    PubMed

    Guo, Xiao-Xi; Zeng, Lin; Lee, Wen-Hui; Zhang, Yun; Jin, Yang

    2007-06-01

    A 50 kDa fibrinogenolytic protease, ohagin, from the venom of Ophiophagus hannah was isolated by a combination of gel filtration, ion-exchange and heparin affinity chromatography. Ohagin specifically degraded the alpha-chain of human fibrinogen and the proteolytic activity was completely abolished by EDTA, but not by PMSF, suggesting it is a metalloproteinase. It dose-dependently inhibited platelet aggregation induced by ADP, TMVA and stejnulxin. The full sequence of ohagin was deduced by cDNA cloning and confirmed by protein sequencing and peptide mass fingerprinting. The full-length cDNA sequence of ohagin encodes an open reading frame of 611 amino acids that includes signal peptide, proprotein and mature protein comprising metalloproteinase, disintegrin-like and cysteine-rich domains, suggesting it belongs to P-III class metalloproteinase. In addition, P-III class metalloproteinases from the venom glands of Naja atra, Bungarus multicinctus and Bungarus fasciatus were also cloned in this study. Sequence analysis and phylogenetic analysis indicated that metalloproteinases from elapid snake venoms form a new subgroup of P-III SVMPs. PMID:17337026

  9. Isolation and cloning of a metalloproteinase from king cobra snake venom.

    PubMed

    Guo, Xiao-Xi; Zeng, Lin; Lee, Wen-Hui; Zhang, Yun; Jin, Yang

    2007-06-01

    A 50 kDa fibrinogenolytic protease, ohagin, from the venom of Ophiophagus hannah was isolated by a combination of gel filtration, ion-exchange and heparin affinity chromatography. Ohagin specifically degraded the alpha-chain of human fibrinogen and the proteolytic activity was completely abolished by EDTA, but not by PMSF, suggesting it is a metalloproteinase. It dose-dependently inhibited platelet aggregation induced by ADP, TMVA and stejnulxin. The full sequence of ohagin was deduced by cDNA cloning and confirmed by protein sequencing and peptide mass fingerprinting. The full-length cDNA sequence of ohagin encodes an open reading frame of 611 amino acids that includes signal peptide, proprotein and mature protein comprising metalloproteinase, disintegrin-like and cysteine-rich domains, suggesting it belongs to P-III class metalloproteinase. In addition, P-III class metalloproteinases from the venom glands of Naja atra, Bungarus multicinctus and Bungarus fasciatus were also cloned in this study. Sequence analysis and phylogenetic analysis indicated that metalloproteinases from elapid snake venoms form a new subgroup of P-III SVMPs.

  10. Nomenclatural instability in the venomous snakes of the Bothrops complex: Implications in toxinology and public health.

    PubMed

    Carrasco, Paola Andrea; Venegas, Pablo Javier; Chaparro, Juan Carlos; Scrocchi, Gustavo José

    2016-09-01

    Since nomenclature is intended to reflect the evolutionary history of organisms, advances in our understanding of historical relationships may lead to changes in classification, and thus potentially in taxonomic instability. An unstable nomenclature for medically important animals like venomous snakes is of concern, and its implications in venom/antivenom research and snakebite treatment have been extensively discussed since the 90´s. The taxonomy of the pitvipers of the Bothrops complex has been historically problematic and different genus-level rearrangements were proposed to rectify the long-standing paraphyly of the group. Here we review the toxinological literature on the Bothrops complex to estimate the impact of recent proposals of classification in non-systematic research. This assessment revealed moderate levels of nomenclatural instability in the last five years, and the recurrence of some practices discussed in previous studies regarding the use of classifications and the information provided about the origin of venom samples. We briefly comment on a few examples and the implications of different proposals of classifications for the Bothrops complex. The aim of this review is to contribute to the reduction of adverse effects of current taxonomic instability in a group of medical importance in the Americas.

  11. Respiratory Effects of Sarafotoxins from the Venom of Different Atractaspis Genus Snake Species.

    PubMed

    Malaquin, Stéphanie; Bayat, Sam; Abou Arab, Osama; Mourier, Gilles; Lorne, Emmanuel; Kamel, Saïd; Dupont, Hervé; Ducancel, Frédéric; Mahjoub, Yazine

    2016-01-01

    Sarafotoxins (SRTX) are endothelin-like peptides extracted from the venom of snakes belonging to the Atractaspididae family. A recent in vivo study on anesthetized and ventilated animals showed that sarafotoxin-b (SRTX-b), extracted from the venom of Atractaspis engaddensis, decreases cardiac output by inducing left ventricular dysfunction while sarafotoxin-m (SRTX-m), extracted from the venom of Atractaspis microlepidota microlepidota, induces right ventricular dysfunction with increased airway pressure. The aim of the present experimental study was to compare the respiratory effects of SRTX-m and SRTX-b. Male Wistar rats were anesthetized, tracheotomized and mechanically ventilated. They received either a 1 LD50 IV bolus of SRTX-b (n = 5) or 1 LD50 of SRTX-m (n = 5). The low-frequency forced oscillation technique was used to measure respiratory impedance. Airway resistance (Raw), parenchymal damping (G) and elastance (H) were determined from impedance data, before and 5 min after SRTX injection. SRTX-m and SRTX-b injections induced acute hypoxia and metabolic acidosis with an increased anion gap. Both toxins markedly increased Raw, G and H, but with a much greater effect of SRTX-b on H, which may have been due to pulmonary edema in addition to bronchoconstriction. Therefore, despite their structural analogy, these two toxins exert different effects on respiratory function. These results emphasize the role of the C-terminal extension in the in vivo effect of these toxins. PMID:27409637

  12. Isolation of a proteinase with plasminogen-activating activity from Lachesis muta muta (bushmaster) snake venom.

    PubMed

    Sanchez, E F; Santos, C I; Magalhaes, A; Diniz, C R; Figueiredo, S; Gilroy, J; Richardson, M

    2000-06-01

    A plasminogen activator enzyme (LV-PA) from Lachesis muta muta venom was purified to homogeneity using gel filtration and anion exchange chromatography. SDS-PAGE under reducing conditions showed a single protein band with an Mr of 33,000 Da. It is an acidic glycoprotein which activates plasminogen to plasmin indirectly, functioning via prior formation of a molecular complex, known as plasminogen activator. The purified preparation catalyzes the hydrolysis of several p-nitroanilide peptide substrates containing Lys at the scissile bond. In contrast, no hydrolysis was detected on the synthetic substrates TAME and BAPNA, which contain arginine. By the use of the plasmin-specific chromogenic substrate Tos-Gly-Pro-Lys-pNA, the preparation had a plasmin-like activity of 0.68 U/mg, which was 35.8-fold higher than that of the crude venom from which it was prepared. In vitro, fibrin hydrolysis using LV-PA as plasminogen activator displayed more similarity with the effect produced by streptokinase (SK). SDS-PAGE (10%) analysis showed a 115-kDa complex formation after incubation of plasminogen with either LV-PA or SK. At a molar ratio of 50:1 (fibrinogen:enzyme), the preparation exhibited weakly fibrinogenolytic activity. However, LV-PA is distinguished from thrombin in that it does not clot fibrinogen. After incubation of LV-PA with platelet-rich plasma, the enzyme (2 microM) showed no effect on platelet aggregation induced by ADP, epinephrine, or collagen. Comparison of the N-terminal sequence of LV-PA with other snake venom plasminogen activators revealed that LV-PA exhibits a high degree of sequence identity with the TsVPA from Trimeresurus stejnegeri (90%) and with the Haly-PA from Agkistrodon halys (85%). LV-PA also has homology with other snake venom serine proteinases such as the thrombin-like/gyroxin analogue (38%) from bushmaster venom and with other coagulation serine proteases. The proteinase was readily inhibited by treatment with p-nitrophenyl p

  13. Contrasting Modes and Tempos of Venom Expression Evolution in Two Snake Species

    PubMed Central

    Margres, Mark J.; McGivern, James J.; Seavy, Margaret; Wray, Kenneth P.; Facente, Jack; Rokyta, Darin R.

    2015-01-01

    Selection is predicted to drive diversification within species and lead to local adaptation, but understanding the mechanistic details underlying this process and thus the genetic basis of adaptive evolution requires the mapping of genotype to phenotype. Venom is complex and involves many genes, but the specialization of the venom gland toward toxin production allows specific transcripts to be correlated with specific toxic proteins, establishing a direct link from genotype to phenotype. To determine the extent of expression variation and identify the processes driving patterns of phenotypic diversity, we constructed genotype-phenotype maps and compared range-wide toxin-protein expression variation for two species of snake with nearly identical ranges: the eastern diamondback rattlesnake (Crotalus adamanteus) and the eastern coral snake (Micrurus fulvius). We detected significant expression variation in C. adamanteus, identified the specific loci associated with population differentiation, and found that loci expressed at all levels contributed to this divergence. Contrary to expectations, we found no expression variation in M. fulvius, suggesting that M. fulvius populations are not locally adapted. Our results not only linked expression variation at specific loci to divergence in a polygenic, complex trait but also have extensive conservation and biomedical implications. C. adamanteus is currently a candidate for federal listing under the Endangered Species Act, and the loss of any major population would result in the irrevocable loss of a unique venom phenotype. The lack of variation in M. fulvius has significant biomedical application because our data will assist in the development of effective antivenom for this species. PMID:25387465

  14. Proteomic and biological characterization of the venom of the redtail coral snake, Micrurus mipartitus (Elapidae), from Colombia and Costa Rica.

    PubMed

    Rey-Suárez, Paola; Núñez, Vitelbina; Gutiérrez, José María; Lomonte, Bruno

    2011-12-21

    Venoms of the redtail coral snake Micrurus mipartitus from Colombia and Costa Rica were analyzed by "venomics", a proteomic strategy to determine their composition. Proteins were separated by RP-HPLC, followed by SDS-PAGE, in-gel tryptic digestion, identification by MALDI or ESI tandem mass spectrometry, and assignment to known protein families by similarity. These analyses were complemented with a characterization of venom activities in vitro and in vivo. Proteins belonging to seven families were found in Colombian M. mipartitus venom, including abundant three-finger toxins (3FTx; ~60% of total proteins) and phospholipases A(2) (PLA(2); ~30%), with the remaining ~10% distributed among l-amino acid oxidase, P-III metalloproteinase, Kunitz-type inhibitor, serine proteinase, and C-type lectin-like families. The venoms of two M. mipartitus specimens from Costa Rica, also referred to as M. multifasciatus in some taxonomic classifications, were also analyzed. Both samples were highly similar to each other, and partially resembled the chromatographic and identity profiles of M. mipartitus from Colombia, although presenting a markedly higher proportion of 3FTxs (~83.0%) in relation to PLA(2)s (~8.2%), and a small amount of acetylcholinesterase, not detected in the venom from Colombia. An equine antivenom against the Central American coral snake, M. nigrocinctus, did not recognize venom components of M. mipartitus from Colombia or Costa Rica by enzyme-immunoassay. Four major components of Colombian M. mipartitus venom were isolated and partially characterized. Venomics of Micrurus species may provide a valuable platform for the rational design of immunizing cocktails to obtain polyspecific antivenoms for this highly diverse group of American elapids.

  15. Population Divergence in Venom Bioactivities of Elapid Snake Pseudonaja textilis: Role of Procoagulant Proteins in Rapid Rodent Prey Incapacitation

    PubMed Central

    Skejić, Jure; Hodgson, Wayne C.

    2013-01-01

    This study looked at how toxic proteins in venoms of adult Australian eastern Brown snakes Pseudonaja textilis from South Australian and Queensland populations interact with physiological functions of the lab SD rat Rattus norvegicus. Circulatory collapse and incoagulable blood occurred instantly after injection of venom under the dorsal skin of anaesthetised and mechanically ventilated rats in an imitation of a P. textilis bite. Intravenous injection of purified P. textilis (Mackay, QLD) venom prothrombin activator proteins caused instant failure of circulation, testifying of high toxicity of these proteins and suggesting their role in rapid incapacitation of rodent prey. The hypothesis is further supported by circulatory collapse occurring instantly despite artificial respiration in envenomed rats and the finding of extremely high venom procoagulant potency in rat plasma. LC-MS and physiology assays revealed divergent venom composition and biological activity of South Australian (Barossa locality) and Queensland (Mackay locality) populations, which may be driven by selection for different prey. The Queensland venom of P. textilis was found to be more procoagulant and to exhibit predominately presynaptic neurotoxicity, while the South Australian venom contained diverse postsynaptic type II and III α-neurotoxins in addition to the presynaptic neurotoxins and caused significantly faster onset of neuromuscular blockade in the rat phrenic nerve-diaphragm preparation. LC-MS analysis found evidence of multiple coagulation factor X-like proteins in P. textilis venoms, including a match to P. textilis coagulation factor X isoform 2, previously known to be expressed only in the liver. PMID:23691135

  16. Population divergence in venom bioactivities of elapid snake Pseudonaja textilis: role of procoagulant proteins in rapid rodent prey incapacitation.

    PubMed

    Skejić, Jure; Hodgson, Wayne C

    2013-01-01

    This study looked at how toxic proteins in venoms of adult Australian eastern Brown snakes Pseudonaja textilis from South Australian and Queensland populations interact with physiological functions of the lab SD rat Rattus norvegicus. Circulatory collapse and incoagulable blood occurred instantly after injection of venom under the dorsal skin of anaesthetised and mechanically ventilated rats in an imitation of a P. textilis bite. Intravenous injection of purified P. textilis (Mackay, QLD) venom prothrombin activator proteins caused instant failure of circulation, testifying of high toxicity of these proteins and suggesting their role in rapid incapacitation of rodent prey. The hypothesis is further supported by circulatory collapse occurring instantly despite artificial respiration in envenomed rats and the finding of extremely high venom procoagulant potency in rat plasma. LC-MS and physiology assays revealed divergent venom composition and biological activity of South Australian (Barossa locality) and Queensland (Mackay locality) populations, which may be driven by selection for different prey. The Queensland venom of P. textilis was found to be more procoagulant and to exhibit predominately presynaptic neurotoxicity, while the South Australian venom contained diverse postsynaptic type II and III α-neurotoxins in addition to the presynaptic neurotoxins and caused significantly faster onset of neuromuscular blockade in the rat phrenic nerve-diaphragm preparation. LC-MS analysis found evidence of multiple coagulation factor X-like proteins in P. textilis venoms, including a match to P. textilis coagulation factor X isoform 2, previously known to be expressed only in the liver.

  17. The role of TLR2 in the acute inflammatory response induced by Bothrops atrox snake venom.

    PubMed

    Moreira, Vanessa; Teixeira, Catarina; Borges da Silva, Henrique; D'Império Lima, Maria Regina; Dos-Santos, Maria Cristina

    2016-08-01

    Envenomation by snakes of the species Bothrops atrox induces local and systemic effects. Local effects include drastic tissue damage and a marked inflammatory response as a result of the synthesis and release of a variety of protein and lipid mediators. Toll-like receptor (TLR) signaling pathways can play an important role in this response, leading to synthesis of these inflammatory mediators. This study investigated the influence of TLR2 on the acute inflammatory response induced by Bothrops atrox venom. Wild-type C57BL/6 mice (WT) and TLR2 gene knockout mice (TLR2(-/-)) were injected with Bothrops atrox venom (BaV), and the following responses to the venom were assessed in peritoneal exudate: leukocyte accumulation; release of mediators, including CCL-2, IL-10, IL-1β, IL-6 and LTB4; protein expression of COX-1 and COX-2; and quantification of their products PGE2 and TXA2. After injection with BaV, the TLR2(-/-) mice (TLR2(-/-)BaV) had higher levels of IL-6 and CCL-2 than WT animals kept under the same conditions (WTBaV), together with an accumulation of polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs), inhibition of IL-1β and LTB4 and reduced mononuclear leukocyte influx. However, no significant differences in COX-2 protein expression or PGE2, TXA2 and IL-10 production between the TLR2(-/-)BaV and WTBav animals were observed. Together, these results indicate that the signaling pathway activated by TLR2 acts by modulating the induced inflammatory response to BaV through the direct action of venom-associated molecular patterns (VAMPs) or indirectly by forming damage-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs) and that this may have important therapeutic implications. PMID:27109323

  18. A transcriptomic analysis of gene expression in the venom gland of the snake Bothrops alternatus (urutu)

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background The genus Bothrops is widespread throughout Central and South America and is the principal cause of snakebite in these regions. Transcriptomic and proteomic studies have examined the venom composition of several species in this genus, but many others remain to be studied. In this work, we used a transcriptomic approach to examine the venom gland genes of Bothrops alternatus, a clinically important species found in southeastern and southern Brazil, Uruguay, northern Argentina and eastern Paraguay. Results A cDNA library of 5,350 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) was produced and assembled into 838 contigs and 4512 singletons. BLAST searches of relevant databases showed 30% hits and 70% no-hits, with toxin-related transcripts accounting for 23% and 78% of the total transcripts and hits, respectively. Gene ontology analysis identified non-toxin genes related to general metabolism, transcription and translation, processing and sorting, (polypeptide) degradation, structural functions and cell regulation. The major groups of toxin transcripts identified were metalloproteinases (81%), bradykinin-potentiating peptides/C-type natriuretic peptides (8.8%), phospholipases A2 (5.6%), serine proteinases (1.9%) and C-type lectins (1.5%). Metalloproteinases were almost exclusively type PIII proteins, with few type PII and no type PI proteins. Phospholipases A2 were essentially acidic; no basic PLA2 were detected. Minor toxin transcripts were related to L-amino acid oxidase, cysteine-rich secretory proteins, dipeptidylpeptidase IV, hyaluronidase, three-finger toxins and ohanin. Two non-toxic proteins, thioredoxin and double-specificity phosphatase Dusp6, showed high sequence identity to similar proteins from other snakes. In addition to the above features, single-nucleotide polymorphisms, microsatellites, transposable elements and inverted repeats that could contribute to toxin diversity were observed. Conclusions Bothrops alternatus venom gland contains the major toxin

  19. Molecular docking studies and anti-enzymatic activities of Thai mango seed kernel extract against snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Leanpolchareanchai, Jiraporn; Pithayanukul, Pimolpan; Bavovada, Rapepol; Saparpakorn, Patchreenart

    2009-03-31

    The ethanolic extract from seed kernels of Thai mango (MSKE) (Mangifera indica L. cv. 'Fahlun') (Anacardiaceae) and its major phenolic principle (pentagalloyl glucopyranose) exhibited dose-dependent inhibitory effects on enzymatic activities of phospholipase A(2) (PLA(2)), hyaluronidase and L-amino acid oxidase (LAAO) of Calloselasma rhodostoma (CR) and Naja naja kaouthia (NK)venoms by in vitro tests. The anti-hemorrhagic and anti-dermonecrotic activities of MSKE against both venoms were clearly supported by in vivo tests. Molecular docking studies indicated that the phenolic molecules of the MSKE could selectively bind to the active sites or their proximity, or modify conserved residues that are critical for the catalysis of PLA(2), and selectively bind to the LAAO binding pocket of both CR and NK venoms and thereby inhibit their enzymatic activities. The results imply a potential use of MSKE against snake venoms.

  20. Quantitative high-throughput profiling of snake venom gland transcriptomes and proteomes (Ovophis okinavensis and Protobothrops flavoviridis)

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Advances in DNA sequencing and proteomics have facilitated quantitative comparisons of snake venom composition. Most studies have employed one approach or the other. Here, both Illumina cDNA sequencing and LC/MS were used to compare the transcriptomes and proteomes of two pit vipers, Protobothrops flavoviridis and Ovophis okinavensis, which differ greatly in their biology. Results Sequencing of venom gland cDNA produced 104,830 transcripts. The Protobothrops transcriptome contained transcripts for 103 venom-related proteins, while the Ovophis transcriptome contained 95. In both, transcript abundances spanned six orders of magnitude. Mass spectrometry identified peptides from 100% of transcripts that occurred at higher than contaminant (e.g. human keratin) levels, including a number of proteins never before sequenced from snakes. These transcriptomes reveal fundamentally different envenomation strategies. Adult Protobothrops venom promotes hemorrhage, hypotension, incoagulable blood, and prey digestion, consistent with mammalian predation. Ovophis venom composition is less readily interpreted, owing to insufficient pharmacological data for venom serine and metalloproteases, which comprise more than 97.3% of Ovophis transcripts, but only 38.0% of Protobothrops transcripts. Ovophis venom apparently represents a hybrid strategy optimized for frogs and small mammals. Conclusions This study illustrates the power of cDNA sequencing combined with MS profiling. The former quantifies transcript composition, allowing detection of novel proteins, but cannot indicate which proteins are actually secreted, as does MS. We show, for the first time, that transcript and peptide abundances are correlated. This means that MS can be used for quantitative, non-invasive venom profiling, which will be beneficial for studies of endangered species. PMID:24224955

  1. Novel Catalytically-Inactive PII Metalloproteinases from a Viperid Snake Venom with Substitutions in the Canonical Zinc-Binding Motif

    PubMed Central

    Camacho, Erika; Sanz, Libia; Escalante, Teresa; Pérez, Alicia; Villalta, Fabián; Lomonte, Bruno; Neves-Ferreira, Ana Gisele C.; Feoli, Andrés; Calvete, Juan J.; Gutiérrez, José María; Rucavado, Alexandra

    2016-01-01

    Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) play key biological roles in prey immobilization and digestion. The majority of these activities depend on the hydrolysis of relevant protein substrates in the tissues. Hereby, we describe several isoforms and a cDNA clone sequence, corresponding to PII SVMP homologues from the venom of the Central American pit viper Bothriechis lateralis, which have modifications in the residues of the canonical sequence of the zinc-binding motif HEXXHXXGXXH. As a consequence, the proteolytic activity of the isolated proteins was undetectable when tested on azocasein and gelatin. These PII isoforms comprise metalloproteinase and disintegrin domains in the mature protein, thus belonging to the subclass PIIb of SVMPs. PII SVMP homologues were devoid of hemorrhagic and in vitro coagulant activities, effects attributed to the enzymatic activity of SVMPs, but induced a mild edema. One of the isoforms presents the characteristic RGD sequence in the disintegrin domain and inhibits ADP- and collagen-induced platelet aggregation. Catalytically-inactive SVMP homologues may have been hitherto missed in the characterization of snake venoms. The presence of such enzymatically-inactive homologues in snake venoms and their possible toxic and adaptive roles deserve further investigation. PMID:27754342

  2. Identification of protective B-cell epitopes of Atroxlysin-I: A metalloproteinase from Bothrops atrox snake venom.

    PubMed

    Schneider, F S; de Almeida Lima, S; Reis de Ávila, G; Castro, K L; Guerra-Duarte, C; Sanchez, E F; Nguyen, C; Granier, C; Molina, F; Chávez-Olortegui, C

    2016-03-29

    Atroxlysin-I (Atr-I) is a hemorrhagic snake venom metalloproteinase (SVMP) from Bothrops atrox venom, the snake responsible for the majority of bites in the north region of South America. SVMPs like Atr-I produce toxic effects in victims including hemorrhage, inflammation, necrosis and blood coagulation deficiency. Mapping of B-cell epitopes in SVMPs might result in the identification of non-toxic molecules capable of inducing neutralizing antibodies and improving the anti-venom therapy. Here, using the SPOT-synthesis technique we identified two epitopes located in the N-ter region of Atr-I (AtrEp1-(22)YNGNSDKIRRRIHQM(36); and AtrEp2-(55)GVEIWSNKDLINVQ(68)). Based on the sequence of AtrEp1 and AtrEp2 a third peptide named Atr-I biepitope (AtrBiEp) was designed and synthesized ((23)NGNSDKIRRRIH(34)GG(55)GVEIWSNKDLINVQ(68)). AtrBiEp was used to immunize BALB/c mice. Anti-AtrBiEp serum cross-reacted against Atr-I in western blot and was able to fully neutralize the hemorrhagic activity of Atr-I. Our results provide a rational basis for the identification of neutralizing epitopes on Atr-I snake venom toxin and show that the use of synthetic peptides could improve the generation of immuno-therapeutics. PMID:26917009

  3. Identification of protective B-cell epitopes of Atroxlysin-I: A metalloproteinase from Bothrops atrox snake venom.

    PubMed

    Schneider, F S; de Almeida Lima, S; Reis de Ávila, G; Castro, K L; Guerra-Duarte, C; Sanchez, E F; Nguyen, C; Granier, C; Molina, F; Chávez-Olortegui, C

    2016-03-29

    Atroxlysin-I (Atr-I) is a hemorrhagic snake venom metalloproteinase (SVMP) from Bothrops atrox venom, the snake responsible for the majority of bites in the north region of South America. SVMPs like Atr-I produce toxic effects in victims including hemorrhage, inflammation, necrosis and blood coagulation deficiency. Mapping of B-cell epitopes in SVMPs might result in the identification of non-toxic molecules capable of inducing neutralizing antibodies and improving the anti-venom therapy. Here, using the SPOT-synthesis technique we identified two epitopes located in the N-ter region of Atr-I (AtrEp1-(22)YNGNSDKIRRRIHQM(36); and AtrEp2-(55)GVEIWSNKDLINVQ(68)). Based on the sequence of AtrEp1 and AtrEp2 a third peptide named Atr-I biepitope (AtrBiEp) was designed and synthesized ((23)NGNSDKIRRRIH(34)GG(55)GVEIWSNKDLINVQ(68)). AtrBiEp was used to immunize BALB/c mice. Anti-AtrBiEp serum cross-reacted against Atr-I in western blot and was able to fully neutralize the hemorrhagic activity of Atr-I. Our results provide a rational basis for the identification of neutralizing epitopes on Atr-I snake venom toxin and show that the use of synthetic peptides could improve the generation of immuno-therapeutics.

  4. Cloning and characterization of a basic phospholipase A2 homologue from Micrurus corallinus (coral snake) venom gland.

    PubMed

    de Oliveira, Ursula Castro; Assui, Alessandra; da Silva, Alvaro Rossan de Brandão Prieto; de Oliveira, Jane Silveira; Ho, Paulo Lee

    2003-09-01

    During the cloning of abundant cDNAs expressed in the Micrurus corallinus coral snake venom gland, several putative toxins, including a phospholipase A2 homologue cDNA (clone V2), were identified. The V2 cDNA clone codes for a potential coral snake toxin with a signal peptide of 27 amino acid residues plus a predicted mature protein with 119 amino acid residues. The deduced protein is highly similar to known phospholipases A2, with seven deduced S-S bridges at the same conserved positions. This protein was expressed in Escherichia coli as a His-tagged protein that allowed the rapid purification of the recombinant protein. This protein was used to generate antibodies, which recognized the recombinant protein in Western blot. This antiserum was used to screen a large number of venoms, showing a ubiquitous distribution of immunorelated proteins in all elapidic venoms but not in the viperidic Bothrops jararaca venom. This is the first description of a complete primary structure of a phospholipase A2 homologue deduced by cDNA cloning from a coral snake.

  5. Hemostatic and toxinological diversities in venom of Micrurus tener tener, Micrurus fulvius fulvius and Micrurus isozonus coral snakes.

    PubMed

    Salazar, Ana M; Vivas, Jeilyn; Sánchez, Elda E; Rodríguez-Acosta, Alexis; Ibarra, Carlos; Gil, Amparo; Carvajal, Zoila; Girón, María E; Estrella, Amalid; Navarrete, Luis F; Guerrero, Belsy

    2011-07-01

    The coral snake Micrurus tener tener (Mtt) from the Elapidae family inhabits the southwestern United States and produces severe cases of envenomations. Although the majority of Mtt venom components are neurotoxins and phospholipase A₂s, this study demonstrated, by SDS-PAGE and molecular exclusion chromatography (MEC), that these venoms also contain high-molecular-weight proteins between 50 and 150 kDa that target the hemostatic system. The biological aspects of other Micrurus venoms were also studied, such as the LD₅₀s of Micrurus isozonus (from 0.52 to 0.61 mg/kg). A pool from these venoms presented a LD₅₀ of 0.57 mg/kg, Micrurus f. fulvius (Mff) and Mtt had LD₅₀s of 0.32 and 0.78 mg/kg, respectively. These venoms contained fibrino(geno)lytic activity, they inhibited platelet aggregation, as well as factor Xa and/or plasmin-like activities. M. isozonus venoms from different Venezuelan geographical regions inhibited ADP-induced platelet aggregation (from 50 to 68%). Micrurus tener tener venom from the United States was the most active with a 95.2% inhibitory effect. This venom showed thrombin-like activity on fibrinogen and human plasma. Fractions of Mtt showed fibrino(geno)lytic activity and inhibition on plasmin amidolytic activity. Several fractions degraded the fibrinogen Aα chains, and fractions F2 and F7 completely degraded both fibrinogen Aα and Bβ chains. To our knowledge, this is the first report on thrombin-like and fibrino(geno)lytic activity and plasmin or factor Xa inhibitors described in Micrurus venoms. Further purification and characterization of these Micrurus venom components could be of therapeutic use in the treatment of hemostatic disorders.

  6. A brief update on potential molecular mechanisms underlying antimicrobial and wound-healing potency of snake venom molecules.

    PubMed

    Samy, Ramar Perumal; Sethi, Gautam; Lim, Lina H K

    2016-09-01

    Infectious diseases remain a significant cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. A wide range of diverse, novel classes of natural antibiotics have been isolated from different snake species in the recent past. Snake venoms contain diverse groups of proteins with potent antibacterial activity against a wide range of human pathogens. Some snake venom molecules are pharmacologically attractive, as they possess promising broad-spectrum antibacterial activities. Furthermore, snake venom proteins (SVPs)/peptides also bind to integrins with high affinity, thereby inhibiting cell adhesion and accelerating wound healing in animal models. Thus, SVPs are a potential alternative to chemical antibiotics. The mode of action for many antibacterial peptides involves pore formation and disruption of the plasma membrane. This activity often includes modulation of nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB) activation during skin wound healing. The NF-κB pathway negatively regulates the transforming growth factor (TGF)-β1/Smad pathway by inducing the expression of Smad7 and eventually reducing in vivo collagen production at the wound sites. In this context, SVPs that regulate the NF-κB signaling pathway may serve as potential targets for drug development. PMID:26975619

  7. The conserved structure of snake venom toxins confers extensive immunological cross-reactivity to toxin-specific antibody.

    PubMed

    Harrison, R A; Wüster, W; Theakston, R D G

    2003-03-01

    We have demonstrated previously that antisera from mice immunised with DNA encoding the carboxy-terminal domain (JD9) of a potent haemorrhagic metalloproteinase, jararhagin, neutralised over 70% of the haemorrhagic activity of the whole Bothrops jararaca venom. Here, we demonstrate that the JD9-specific antibody possesses extensive immunological reactivity to venom components in snakes of distinct species and genera. The polyspecific immunological reactivity of the antibody showed a correlation with amino acid sequence identity and with predicted antigenic domains of JD9-analogues in venoms of snakes with closest phylogenetic links to B. jararaca. This study further promotes the potential of DNA immunisation to generate toxin-specific antibodies with polyspecific cover. An analysis of the reactivity of the JD9-specific antisera to B. atrox complex venoms that exhibited intraspecific variation in the venom proteome revealed, however, that the toxin-specific approach to antivenom development requires a more in-depth knowledge of the target molecules than is required for conventional antivenoms. PMID:12657313

  8. Local and systemic biochemical alterations induced by Bothrops atrox snake venom in mice.

    PubMed

    de Souza, Carlos At; Kayano, Anderson M; Setúbal, Sulamita S; Pontes, Adriana S; Furtado, Juliana L; Kwasniewski, Fábio H; Zaqueo, Kayena D; Soares, Andreimar M; Stábeli, Rodrigo G; Zuliani, Juliana P

    2012-01-01

    The local and systemic alterations induced by Bothrops atrox snake venom (BaV) injection in mice were studied. BaV induced superoxide production by migrated neutrophils, mast cell degranulation and phagocytosis by macrophages. Moreover, BaV caused hemorrhage in dorsum of mice after 2hr post- injection. Three hours post-injection in gastrocnemius muscle, we also observed myonecrosis, which was assessed by the determination of serum and tissue CK besides the release of urea, but not creatinine and uric acid, indicating kidney alterations. BaV also induced the release of LDH and transaminases (ALT and AST) indicating tissue and liver abnormalities. In conclusion, the data indicate that BaV induces events of local and systemic importance. PMID:23487552

  9. Local and systemic biochemical alterations induced by Bothrops atrox snake venom in mice.

    PubMed

    de Souza, Carlos At; Kayano, Anderson M; Setúbal, Sulamita S; Pontes, Adriana S; Furtado, Juliana L; Kwasniewski, Fábio H; Zaqueo, Kayena D; Soares, Andreimar M; Stábeli, Rodrigo G; Zuliani, Juliana P

    2012-01-01

    The local and systemic alterations induced by Bothrops atrox snake venom (BaV) injection in mice were studied. BaV induced superoxide production by migrated neutrophils, mast cell degranulation and phagocytosis by macrophages. Moreover, BaV caused hemorrhage in dorsum of mice after 2hr post- injection. Three hours post-injection in gastrocnemius muscle, we also observed myonecrosis, which was assessed by the determination of serum and tissue CK besides the release of urea, but not creatinine and uric acid, indicating kidney alterations. BaV also induced the release of LDH and transaminases (ALT and AST) indicating tissue and liver abnormalities. In conclusion, the data indicate that BaV induces events of local and systemic importance.

  10. Local and systemic biochemical alterations induced by Bothrops atrox snake venom in mice

    PubMed Central

    de Souza, Carlos AT; Kayano, Anderson M; Setúbal, Sulamita S; Pontes, Adriana S; Furtado, Juliana L; Kwasniewski, Fábio H; Zaqueo, Kayena D; Soares, Andreimar M; Stábeli, Rodrigo G; Zuliani, Juliana P

    2012-01-01

    The local and systemic alterations induced by Bothrops atrox snake venom (BaV) injection in mice were studied. BaV induced superoxide production by migrated neutrophils, mast cell degranulation and phagocytosis by macrophages. Moreover, BaV caused hemorrhage in dorsum of mice after 2hr post- injection. Three hours post-injection in gastrocnemius muscle, we also observed myonecrosis, which was assessed by the determination of serum and tissue CK besides the release of urea, but not creatinine and uric acid, indicating kidney alterations. BaV also induced the release of LDH and transaminases (ALT and AST) indicating tissue and liver abnormalities. In conclusion, the data indicate that BaV induces events of local and systemic importance. PMID:23487552

  11. A comparative analysis of the clotting and fibrinolytic activities of the snake venom (Bothrops atrox) from different geographical areas in Venezuela.

    PubMed

    Salazar, Ana Maria; Rodriguez-Acosta, Alexis; Girón, Maria E; Aguilar, Irma; Guerrero, Belsy

    2007-01-01

    Venom constitution within the same snake species can present considerable geographical variations. Bothrops atrox venoms were obtained from adult snakes captured at different geographical locations: Parguasa (Bolívar state); Puerto Ayacucho 1, Serranía del Cuao and Puerto Ayacucho 2 (Amazon state). The coagulant and fibrinolytic activities of these venoms were compared. Amidolytic activity of crude snake venom was measured by a micromethod designed in our laboratory. Coagulant activity on plasma and fibrinogen due to thrombin-like activity in venoms was also determined. Crude snake venom fibrinolytic activity by the fibrin plate method was assayed. Chromatographic studies were developed on Protein-Pack 300 column. Polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis was carried out under reduced conditions. After SDS-PAGE of samples, the fibrin-zymography was tested on agarose-fibrin plates. The results demonstrated several differences among B. atrox venoms from different geographical areas. Chromatograms and SDS-PAGE profiles indicated that venoms from the same species presented differences in the molecular mass of their components. The procoagulant activity depended on the utilized method (amidolytic versus clotting). Parguasa and Puerto Ayacucho 2 venoms presented procoagulant activity for both methods. Furthermore, Parguasa venom had also the highest hemorrhagic activity and the lowest LD50. In relation to the fibrinolytic activity, Puerto Ayacucho 1 venom was the most active, equally for fibrin plates as for the amidolytic method (t-PA like). This venom had the lowest coagulant activity, which induced us to think that probably its procoagulant activity was interfered by its fibrinolytic activity.

  12. A comparative analysis of the clotting and fibrinolytic activities of the snake venom (Bothrops atrox) from different geographical areas in Venezuela.

    PubMed

    Salazar, Ana Maria; Rodriguez-Acosta, Alexis; Girón, Maria E; Aguilar, Irma; Guerrero, Belsy

    2007-01-01

    Venom constitution within the same snake species can present considerable geographical variations. Bothrops atrox venoms were obtained from adult snakes captured at different geographical locations: Parguasa (Bolívar state); Puerto Ayacucho 1, Serranía del Cuao and Puerto Ayacucho 2 (Amazon state). The coagulant and fibrinolytic activities of these venoms were compared. Amidolytic activity of crude snake venom was measured by a micromethod designed in our laboratory. Coagulant activity on plasma and fibrinogen due to thrombin-like activity in venoms was also determined. Crude snake venom fibrinolytic activity by the fibrin plate method was assayed. Chromatographic studies were developed on Protein-Pack 300 column. Polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis was carried out under reduced conditions. After SDS-PAGE of samples, the fibrin-zymography was tested on agarose-fibrin plates. The results demonstrated several differences among B. atrox venoms from different geographical areas. Chromatograms and SDS-PAGE profiles indicated that venoms from the same species presented differences in the molecular mass of their components. The procoagulant activity depended on the utilized method (amidolytic versus clotting). Parguasa and Puerto Ayacucho 2 venoms presented procoagulant activity for both methods. Furthermore, Parguasa venom had also the highest hemorrhagic activity and the lowest LD50. In relation to the fibrinolytic activity, Puerto Ayacucho 1 venom was the most active, equally for fibrin plates as for the amidolytic method (t-PA like). This venom had the lowest coagulant activity, which induced us to think that probably its procoagulant activity was interfered by its fibrinolytic activity. PMID:17045631

  13. Batroxase, a new metalloproteinase from B. atrox snake venom with strong fibrinolytic activity.

    PubMed

    Cintra, A C O; De Toni, L G B; Sartim, M A; Franco, J J; Caetano, R C; Murakami, M T; Sampaio, S V

    2012-07-01

    The structures and functional activities of metalloproteinases from snake venoms have been widely studied because of the importance of these molecules in envenomation. Batroxase, which is a metalloproteinase isolated from Bothrops atrox (Pará) snake venom, was obtained by gel filtration and anion exchange chromatography. The enzyme is a single protein chain composed of 202 amino acid residues with a molecular mass of 22.9 kDa, as determined by mass spectrometry analysis, showing an isoelectric point of 7.5. The primary sequence analysis indicates that the proteinase contains a zinc ligand motif (HELGHNLGISH) and a sequence C₁₆₄ I₁₆₅M₁₆₆ motif that is associated with a "Met-turn" structure. The protein lacks N-glycosylation sites and contains seven half cystine residues, six of which are conserved as pairs to form disulfide bridges. The three-dimensional structure of Batroxase was modeled based on the crystal structure of BmooMPα-I from Bothrops moojeni. The model revealed that the zinc binding site has a high structural similarity to the binding site of other metalloproteinases. Batroxase presented weak hemorrhagic activity, with a MHD of 10 μg, and was able to hydrolyze extracellular matrix components, such as type IV collagen and fibronectin. The toxin cleaves both α and β-chains of the fibrinogen molecule, and it can be inhibited by EDTA, EGTA and β-mercaptoethanol. Batroxase was able to dissolve fibrin clots independently of plasminogen activation. These results demonstrate that Batroxase is a zinc-dependent hemorrhagic metalloproteinase with fibrin(ogen)olytic and thrombolytic activity. PMID:22483847

  14. Three-Fingered RAVERs: Rapid Accumulation of Variations in Exposed Residues of Snake Venom Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Sunagar, Kartik; Jackson, Timothy N. W.; Undheim, Eivind A. B.; Ali, Syed. A.; Antunes, Agostinho; Fry, Bryan G.

    2013-01-01

    Three-finger toxins (3FTx) represent one of the most abundantly secreted and potently toxic components of colubrid (Colubridae), elapid (Elapidae) and psammophid (Psammophiinae subfamily of the Lamprophidae) snake venom arsenal. Despite their conserved structural similarity, they perform a diversity of biological functions. Although they are theorised to undergo adaptive evolution, the underlying diversification mechanisms remain elusive. Here, we report the molecular evolution of different 3FTx functional forms and show that positively selected point mutations have driven the rapid evolution and diversification of 3FTx. These diversification events not only correlate with the evolution of advanced venom delivery systems (VDS) in Caenophidia, but in particular the explosive diversification of the clade subsequent to the evolution of a high pressure, hollow-fanged VDS in elapids, highlighting the significant role of these toxins in the evolution of advanced snakes. We show that Type I, II and III α-neurotoxins have evolved with extreme rapidity under the influence of positive selection. We also show that novel Oxyuranus/Pseudonaja Type II forms lacking the apotypic loop-2 stabilising cysteine doublet characteristic of Type II forms are not phylogenetically basal in relation to other Type IIs as previously thought, but are the result of secondary loss of these apotypic cysteines on at least three separate occasions. Not all 3FTxs have evolved rapidly: κ-neurotoxins, which form non-covalently associated heterodimers, have experienced a relatively weaker influence of diversifying selection; while cytotoxic 3FTx, with their functional sites, dispersed over 40% of the molecular surface, have been extremely constrained by negative selection. We show that the a previous theory of 3FTx molecular evolution (termed ASSET) is evolutionarily implausible and cannot account for the considerable variation observed in very short segments of 3FTx. Instead, we propose a theory of

  15. Determination of inorganic elements in blood of mice immunized with Bothrops Snake venom using XRF and NAA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lopes da Silva, L. F. F.; Zamboni, C. B.; Bahovschi, V.; Metairon, S.; Suzuki, M. F.; Sant'Anna, O. A.; Rizzutto, M. A.

    2015-07-01

    In this work, mice genetically modified [HIII line] were immunized against different Bothrops snake venoms to produce anti-Bothrops serum (antivenom). The Neutron Activation Analysis (NAA) and Energy Dispersive X-Ray Fluorescence (EDXRF) techniques were used to evaluate Ca and Fe concentrations in blood of these immunized mice in order to establish a potential correlation between both phenotypes: antibody response and blood constituents after Bothrops venom administration. The results were compared with the control group (mice not immunized) and with human being estimative. These data are important for clinical screening of patients submitted to immunological therapy as well as the understanding of the envenoming mechanisms.

  16. Unraveling the distinctive features of hemorrhagic and non-hemorrhagic snake venom metalloproteinases using molecular simulations.

    PubMed

    de Souza, Raoni Almeida; Díaz, Natalia; Nagem, Ronaldo Alves Pinto; Ferreira, Rafaela Salgado; Suárez, Dimas

    2016-01-01

    Snake venom metalloproteinases are important toxins that play fundamental roles during envenomation. They share a structurally similar catalytic domain, but with diverse hemorrhagic capabilities. To understand the structural basis for this difference, we build and compare two dynamical models, one for the hemorrhagic atroxlysin-I from Bothrops atrox and the other for the non-hemorraghic leucurolysin-a from Bothrops leucurus. The analysis of the extended molecular dynamics simulations shows some changes in the local structure, flexibility and surface determinants that can contribute to explain the different hemorrhagic activity of the two enzymes. In agreement with previous results, the long Ω-loop (from residue 149 to 177) has a larger mobility in the hemorrhagic protein. In addition, we find some potentially-relevant differences at the base of the S1' pocket, what may be interesting for the structure-based design of new anti-venom agents. However, the sharpest differences in the computational models of atroxlysin-I and leucurolysin-a are observed in the surface electrostatic potential around the active site region, suggesting thus that the hemorrhagic versus non-hemorrhagic activity is probably determined by protein surface determinants. PMID:26676823

  17. ADAM and ADAMTS Family Proteins and Snake Venom Metalloproteinases: A Structural Overview

    PubMed Central

    Takeda, Soichi

    2016-01-01

    A disintegrin and metalloproteinase (ADAM) family proteins constitute a major class of membrane-anchored multidomain proteinases that are responsible for the shedding of cell-surface protein ectodomains, including the latent forms of growth factors, cytokines, receptors and other molecules. Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) are major components in most viper venoms. SVMPs are primarily responsible for hemorrhagic activity and may also interfere with the hemostatic system in envenomed animals. SVMPs are phylogenetically most closely related to ADAMs and, together with ADAMs and related ADAM with thrombospondin motifs (ADAMTS) family proteinases, constitute adamalysins/reprolysins or the M12B clan (MEROPS database) of metalloproteinases. Although the catalytic domain structure is topologically similar to that of other metalloproteinases such as matrix metalloproteinases, the M12B proteinases have a modular structure with multiple non-catalytic ancillary domains that are not found in other proteinases. Notably, crystallographic studies revealed that, in addition to the conserved metalloproteinase domain, M12B members share a hallmark cysteine-rich domain designated as the “ADAM_CR” domain. Despite their name, ADAMTSs lack disintegrin-like structures and instead comprise two ADAM_CR domains. This review highlights the current state of our knowledge on the three-dimensional structures of M12B proteinases, focusing on their unique domains that may collaboratively participate in directing these proteinases to specific substrates. PMID:27196928

  18. Hemorrhagic, coagulant and fibrino(geno)lytic activities of crude venom and fractions from mapanare (Bothrops colombiensis) snakes.

    PubMed

    Girón, María E; Salazar, Ana M; Aguilar, Irma; Pérez, John C; Sánchez, Elda E; Arocha-Piñango, Carmen L; Rodríguez-Acosta, Alexis; Guerrero, Belsy

    2008-01-01

    Bothrops colombiensis venom from two similar geographical locations were tested for their hemostatic functions and characterized by gel-filtration chromatography and SDS-PAGE electrophoresis. The snakes were from Caucagua and El Guapo towns of the Venezuelan state of Miranda. Fibrino(geno)lytic, procoagulant, hemorrhagic, lethal activities, gel-filtration chromatography and SDS-PAGE profiles were analyzed and compared for both venoms. The highest hemorrhagic activity of 5.3 mug was seen in El Guapo venom while Caucagua venom had the lowest LD(50) of 5.8 mg/kg. Both venoms presented similar thrombin-like activity. El Guapo showed a factor Xa-like activity two times higher than Caucagua. Differences were observed in kallikrein-like and t-PA activities, being highest in El Guapo. Caucagua venom showed the maximum fibrin lysis. Both crude venom runs on Sephadex G-100 chromatography gave fraction SII with the high fibrinolytic activity. Proteases presented in SII fractions and eluted from Benzamidine-Sepharose (not bound to the column) provoked a fast degradation of fibrinogen alpha chains and a slower degradation of beta chains, which could possibly be due to a higher content of alpha fibrinogenases in these venoms. The fibrinogenolytic activity was decreased by metalloprotease inhibitors. The results suggested that metalloproteases in SII fractions were responsible for the fibrinolytic activity. The analysis of samples for fibrin-zymography of SII fractions showed an active band with a molecular mass of approximately 30 kDa. These results reiterate the importance of using pools of venoms for antivenom immunization, to facilitate the neutralization of the maximum potential number of toxins.

  19. Isolation and identification of a snake venom metalloproteinase inhibitor from California ground squirrel (Spermophilus beecheyi) blood sera.

    PubMed

    Biardi, J E; Ho, C Y L; Marcinczyk, J; Nambiar, K P

    2011-11-01

    California ground squirrels (Spermophilus beecheyi) show blood-based defenses to a variety of toxins in the venom of the Northern Pacific rattlesnake (Crotalus oreganus oreganus). In this study we demonstrate the presence of an effective snake venom metalloproteinase inhibitor (SVMPI) in S. beecheyi. The blood sera of California ground squirrels were effective at reducing the metalloproteinase activity of Northern Pacific (C. o. oreganus) and prairie rattlesnake (Crotalus viridis viridis) venoms by over 75%, significantly more than its ability to reduce the activity of western diamondback rattlesnake venom. We used anion exchange and affinity chromatography to isolate this protein from the blood sera of S. beecheyi. This SVMPI had a molecular mass of 108.3 kDa and a pI of 5.1. The IC(50) of this inhibitor against whole venom from C. o. oreganus was determined to be 3.14 × 10(-8) M. Subsequent LC MS/MS analysis of a CNBr/tryptic digest of the inhibitor yielded multiple internal peptide sequences. These sequences showed homology to three other known mammalian plasma proteins: inter-α trypsin inhibitor, and two hibernation-associated proteins, HP25 and HP27. The presence of SVMPI in S. beecheyi blood sera is consistent with the resistance of these animals to venom-induced hemorrhage and tissue damage, and consistent with the protective factors conferring venom resistance in other mammals. However, the variety of SVMPI identified to date from mammalian taxa suggests that different species have converged on neutralization of venom metalloproteinase activity as a key step in venom neutralization.

  20. Trends in the Evolution of Snake Toxins Underscored by an Integrative Omics Approach to Profile the Venom of the Colubrid Phalotris mertensi.

    PubMed

    Campos, Pollyanna Fernandes; Andrade-Silva, Débora; Zelanis, André; Paes Leme, Adriana Franco; Rocha, Marisa Maria Teixeira; Menezes, Milene Cristina; Serrano, Solange M T; Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio de Loiola Meirelles

    2016-01-01

    Only few studies on snake venoms were dedicated to deeply characterize the toxin secretion of animals from the Colubridae family, despite the fact that they represent the majority of snake diversity. As a consequence, some evolutionary trends observed in venom proteins that underpinned the evolutionary histories of snake toxins were based on data from a minor parcel of the clade. Here, we investigated the proteins of the totally unknown venom from Phalotris mertensi (Dipsadinae subfamily), in order to obtain a detailed profile of its toxins and to appreciate evolutionary tendencies occurring in colubrid venoms. By means of integrated omics and functional approaches, including RNAseq, Sanger sequencing, high-resolution proteomics, recombinant protein production, and enzymatic tests, we verified an active toxic secretion containing up to 21 types of proteins. A high content of Kunitz-type proteins and C-type lectins were observed, although several enzymatic components such as metalloproteinases and an L-amino acid oxidase were also present in the venom. Interestingly, an arguable venom component of other species was demonstrated as a true venom protein and named svLIPA (snake venom acid lipase). This finding indicates the importance of checking the actual protein occurrence across species before rejecting genes suggested to code for toxins, which are relevant for the discussion about the early evolution of reptile venoms. Moreover, trends in the evolution of some toxin classes, such as simplification of metalloproteinases and rearrangements of Kunitz and Wap domains, parallel similar phenomena observed in other venomous snake families and provide a broader picture of toxin evolution. PMID:27412610

  1. Trends in the Evolution of Snake Toxins Underscored by an Integrative Omics Approach to Profile the Venom of the Colubrid Phalotris mertensi

    PubMed Central

    Campos, Pollyanna Fernandes; Andrade-Silva, Débora; Zelanis, André; Paes Leme, Adriana Franco; Rocha, Marisa Maria Teixeira; Menezes, Milene Cristina; Serrano, Solange M.T.; Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio de Loiola Meirelles

    2016-01-01

    Only few studies on snake venoms were dedicated to deeply characterize the toxin secretion of animals from the Colubridae family, despite the fact that they represent the majority of snake diversity. As a consequence, some evolutionary trends observed in venom proteins that underpinned the evolutionary histories of snake toxins were based on data from a minor parcel of the clade. Here, we investigated the proteins of the totally unknown venom from Phalotris mertensi (Dipsadinae subfamily), in order to obtain a detailed profile of its toxins and to appreciate evolutionary tendencies occurring in colubrid venoms. By means of integrated omics and functional approaches, including RNAseq, Sanger sequencing, high-resolution proteomics, recombinant protein production, and enzymatic tests, we verified an active toxic secretion containing up to 21 types of proteins. A high content of Kunitz-type proteins and C-type lectins were observed, although several enzymatic components such as metalloproteinases and an L-amino acid oxidase were also present in the venom. Interestingly, an arguable venom component of other species was demonstrated as a true venom protein and named svLIPA (snake venom acid lipase). This finding indicates the importance of checking the actual protein occurrence across species before rejecting genes suggested to code for toxins, which are relevant for the discussion about the early evolution of reptile venoms. Moreover, trends in the evolution of some toxin classes, such as simplification of metalloproteinases and rearrangements of Kunitz and Wap domains, parallel similar phenomena observed in other venomous snake families and provide a broader picture of toxin evolution. PMID:27412610

  2. Identification of potent inhibitors against snake venom metalloproteinase (SVMP) using molecular docking and molecular dynamics studies.

    PubMed

    Chinnasamy, Sathishkumar; Chinnasamy, Selvakkumar; Nagamani, Selvaraman; Muthusamy, Karthikeyan

    2015-01-01

    Snake venom metalloproteinase (SVMP) (Echis coloratus (Carpet viper) is a multifunctional enzyme that is involved in producing several symptoms that follow a snakebite, such as severe local hemorrhage, nervous system effects and tissue necrosis. Because the three-dimensional (3D) structure of SVMP is not known, models were constructed, and the best model was selected based on its stereo-chemical quality. The stability of the modeled protein was analyzed through molecular dynamics (MD) simulation studies. Structure-based virtual screening was performed, and 15 potential molecules with the highest binding energies were selected. Further analysis was carried out with induced fit docking, Prime/MM-GBSA (ΔGBind calculations), quantum-polarized ligand docking, and density functional theory calculations. Further, the stability of the lead molecules in the SVMP-active site was examined using MD simulation. The results showed that the selected lead molecules were highly stable in the active site of SVMP. Hence, these molecules could potentially be selective inhibitors of SVMP. These lead molecules can be experimentally validated, and their backbone structural scaffold could serve as building blocks in designing drug-like molecules for snake antivenom.

  3. IgG subclass distributions of anti-horse serum antibodies and natural venom-antibodies produced in response to antivenom injection or snake bite in humans.

    PubMed

    Ameno, S; Ameno, K; Fuke, C; Kiryu, T; Ijiri, I

    1990-01-01

    The Japanese Mamushi (Agkistrodon halys blomhoffi, BOIE) is the most common snake in Japan. Bite victims treated with antivenom (horse serum) can produce antibodies against the horse serum and the snake venom. We studied distributions of the IgG subclasses of both these antibodies produced in response to antivenom injection and snake bite. We found that IgG1 and IgG4 of each antibody in the victims' serum were present for a long period of time. PMID:2343468

  4. High-level expression, purification, characterization and structural prediction of a snake venom metalloproteinase inhibitor in Pichia pastoris.

    PubMed

    Shi, Yi; Ji, Ming-Kai; Xu, Jian-Wen; Lin, Xu; Lin, Jian-Yin

    2012-03-01

    Snake venom metalloproteinase inhibitor BJ46a is from the serum of the venomous snake Bothrops jararaca. It has been proven to possess the capacity to inhibit matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), likely based on its structural similarity to MMPs. This report describes the successful expression, purification, and characterization of the recombinant protein BJ46a in Pichia pastoris. Purified recombinant protein BJ46a was found to inhibit MMPs. Structural modeling was completed and should provide the foundation for further functional research. To our knowledge, this is the first report on the large scale expression of BJ46a, and it provides promise as a method for generation of BJ46a and investigation of its potential use as a new drug for treatment of antitumor invasion and metastasis. PMID:22307654

  5. Specific identification of Lachesis muta muta snake venom using antibodies against the plasminogen activator enzyme, LV-PA.

    PubMed

    Felicori, Liza F; Chávez-Olórtegui, Carlos; Sánchez, Eladio F

    2005-05-01

    Sandwich-type enzyme linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA) were developed to detect Lachesis muta muta (bushmaster) snake venom using antibodies against the plasminogen activator enzyme (LV-PA). Antibodies to LV-PA were obtained by immunization of one rabbit with the purified enzyme. The IgG fraction was purified from rabbit blood in a single step on a column of Sepharose-L. m. muta venom and used to coat the microtiter plates. The specificity of the assay was demonstrated by its capacity to correctly discriminate between the circulating antigens in mice that were experimentally inoculated with L. m. muta venom from those in mice inoculated with venoms from Bothrops atrox, B. brazili, B. castelnaudi, Bothriopsis taeniata, B. bilineata, Crotalus durissus ruruima and the antigenic Bothrops (AgB) and Crotalus (AgC) pools venoms used to produce Bothropic and Crotalic antivenoms at Fundacao Ezequiel Dias (FUNED). Measurable absorbance signals were obtained with 1.5 ng of venom per assay. The ELISA was used to follow the kinetic distribution of antigens in experimentally envenomed mice. PMID:15804530

  6. Neuromuscular activity of the venoms of the Colombian coral snakes Micrurus dissoleucus and Micrurus mipartitus: an evolutionary perspective.

    PubMed

    Renjifo, Camila; Smith, Eric N; Hodgson, Wayne C; Renjifo, Juan M; Sanchez, Armando; Acosta, Rodrigo; Maldonado, Jairo H; Riveros, Alain

    2012-01-01

    The venoms of coral snakes (genus Micrurus) are known to induce a broad spectrum of pharmacological activities. While some studies have investigated their potential human effects, little is known about their mechanism of action in terms of the ecological diversity and evolutionary relationships among the group. In the current study we investigated the neuromuscular blockade of the venom of two sister species Micrurus mipartitus and Micrurus dissoleucus, which exhibit divergent ecological characteristics in Colombia, by using the chick biventer cervicis nerve-muscle preparation. We also undertook a phylogenetic analysis of these species and their congeners, in order to provide an evolutionary framework for the American coral snakes. The venom of M. mipartitus caused a concentration-dependant inhibition (3-10 μg/ml) of nerve-mediated twitches and significantly inhibited contractile responses to exogenous ACh (1 mM), but not KCl (40 mM), indicating a postsynaptic mechanism of action. The inhibition of indirect twitches at the lower venom dose (3 μg/ml) showed to be triphasic and the effect was further attenuated when PLA2 was inhibited. M. dissoleucus venom (10-50 μg/ml) failed to produce a complete blockade of nerve-mediated twitches within a 3 h time period and significantly inhibited contractile responses to exogenous ACh (1 mM) and KCl (40 mM), indicating both postsynaptic and myotoxic mechanisms of action. Myotoxic activity was confirmed by morphological studies of the envenomed tissues. Our results demonstrate a hitherto unsuspected diversity of pharmacological actions in closely related species which exhibit divergent ecological characteristics; these results have important implications for both the clinical management of Coral snake envenomings and the design of Micrurus antivenom.

  7. Alpha1-adrenoceptors trigger the snake venom production cycle in secretory cells by activating phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate hydrolysis and ERK signaling pathway.

    PubMed

    Kerchove, Celine M; Luna, Milene S A; Zablith, Mariana B; Lazari, Maria F M; Smaili, Soraya S; Yamanouye, Norma

    2008-08-01

    Loss of venom from the venom gland after biting or manual extraction leads to morphological changes in venom secreting cells and the start of a cycle of production of new venom. We have previously shown that stimulation of both alpha- and beta-adrenoceptors in the secretory cells of the venom gland is essential for the onset of the venom production cycle in Bothrops jararaca. We investigated the signaling pathway by which the alpha-adrenoceptor initiates the venom production cycle. Our results show that the alpha(1)-adrenoceptor subtype is present in venom gland of the snake. In quiescent cells, stimulation of alpha(1)-adrenoceptor with phenylephrine increased the total inositol phosphate concentration, and this effect was blocked by the phospholipase C inhibitor U73122. Phenylephrine mobilized Ca(2+) from thapsigargin-sensitive stores and increased protein kinase C activity. In addition, alpha(1)-adrenoceptor stimulation increased the activity of ERK 1/2, partially via protein kinase C. Using RT-PCR approach we obtained a partial sequence of a snake alpha(1)-adrenoceptor (260 bp) with higher identity with alpha(1D) and alpha(1B)-adrenoceptors from different species. These results suggest that alpha(1)-adrenoceptors in the venom secreting cells are probably coupled to a G(q) protein and trigger the venom production cycle by activating the phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate and ERK signaling pathway.

  8. Antimicrobial proteins from snake venoms: direct bacterial damage and activation of innate immunity against Staphylococcus aureus skin infection.

    PubMed

    Samy, R P; Stiles, B G; Gopalakrishnakone, P; Chow, V T K

    2011-01-01

    The innate immune system is the first line of defense against microbial diseases. Antimicrobial proteins produced by snake venoms have recently attracted significant attention due to their relevance to bacterial infection and potential development into new therapeutic agents. Staphylococcus aureus is one of the major human pathogens causing a variety of infections involving pneumonia, toxic shock syndrome, and skin lesions. With the recent emergence of methicillin (MRSA) and vancomycin (VRSA) resistance, S. aureus infection is a serious clinical problem that will have a grave socio-economic impact in the near future. Although S. aureus susceptibility to innate antimicrobial peptides has been reported recently, the protective effect of snake venom phospholipase A₂ (svPLA₂) proteins on the skin from S. aureus infection has been understudied. This review details the protective function of svPLA₂s derived from venoms against skin infections caused by S. aureus. We have demonstrated in vivo that local application of svPLA₂ provides complete clearance of S. aureus within 2 weeks after treatment compared to fusidic acid ointment (FAO). In vitro experiments also demonstrate that svPLA₂ proteins have inhibitory (bacteriostatic) and killing (bactericidal) effects on S. aureus in a dose-dependant manner. The mechanism of bacterial membrane damage and perturbation was clearly evidenced by electron microscopic studies. In summary, svPLA₂s from Viperidae and Elapidae snakes are novel molecules that can activate important mechanisms of innate immunity in animals to endow them with protection against skin infection caused by S. aureus.

  9. Prospective assessment of the false positive rate of the Australian snake venom detection kit in healthy human samples.

    PubMed

    Nimorakiotakis, Vasilios Bill; Winkel, Kenneth D

    2016-03-01

    The Snake Venom Detection Kit (SVDK; bioCSL Pty Ltd, Australia) distinguishes venom from the five most medically significant snake immunotypes found in Australia. This study assesses the rate of false positives that, by definition, refers to a positive assay finding in a sample from someone who has not been bitten by a venomous snake. Control unbroken skin swabs, simulated bite swabs and urine specimens were collected from 61 healthy adult volunteers [33 males and 28 females] for assessment. In all controls, simulated bite site and urine samples [a total of 183 tests], the positive control well reacted strongly within one minute and no test wells reacted during the ten minute incubation period. However, in two urine tests, the negative control well gave a positive reaction (indicating an uninterpretable test). A 95% confidence interval for the false positive rate, on a per-patient rate, derived from the findings of this study, would extend from 0% to 6% and, on a per-test basis, it would be 0-2%. It appears to be a very low incidence (0-6%) of intrinsic true false positives for the SVDK. The clinical impresssion of a high SVDK false positive rate may be mostly related to operator error.

  10. Edema induced by Bothrops asper (Squamata: Viperidae) snake venom and its inhibition by Costa Rican plant extracts.

    PubMed

    Badilla, Beatriz; Chaves, Fernando; Mora, Gerardo; Poveda, Luis J

    2006-06-01

    We tested the capacity of leaf (Urera baccifera, Loasa speciosa, Urtica leptuphylla, Chaptalia nutans, and Satureja viminea) and root (Uncaria tomentosa) extracts to inhibit edema induced by Bothrops asper snake venom. Edema-forming activity was studied plethysmographically in the rat hind paw model. Groups of rats were injected intraperitoneally with various doses of each extract and, one hour later, venom was injected subcutaneously in the right hind paw. Edema was assessed at various time intervals. The edematogenic activity was inhibited in those animals that received an injection U. tomentosa, C. nutans or L. speciosa extract. The extract of U. baccifera showed a slight inhibition of the venom effect. Extract from S. viminea and, to a lesser extent that of U. leptuphylla, induced a pro-inflammatory effect, increasing the edema at doses of 250 mg/kg at one and two hours.

  11. Inhibition of mutalysin II, a metalloproteinase from bushmaster snake venom by human alpha2-macroglobulin and rabbit immunoglobulin.

    PubMed

    Souza, C T; Moura, M B; Magalhaes, A; Heneine, L G; Olortegui, C C; Diniz, C R; Sanchez, E F

    2001-09-01

    Mutalysin II is a 22.5-kDa zinc endopeptidase isolated from Lachesis muta muta snake venom. In order to determine whether the inhibitors human alpha2-macroglobulin (alpha2-M) and rabbit antibody to mutalysin II share a common mechanism, we have investigated the inhibition of mutalysin II by these two different glycoproteins. The proteolytic activity of mutalysin II with dimethylcasein as substrate was completely inhibited by human alpha2-M and by a purified rabbit antibody to mutalysin II. The protection of fibrin(ogen) digestion by alpha2-M was slightly better than the protection offered by the antibody. In addition, the purified antibody reacted only with the metalloproteinase in bushmaster venom, as demonstrated by immunodiffusion. SDS-PAGE analysis of reduced samples showed that the interaction of mutalysin II with alpha2-M resulted in the formation of high molecular complex ( approximately 180000) and M(r) 90000 fragments generated by the venom enzyme. Also, fragments at 85 and 23 kDa were detected under non-reducing conditions after incubation of rabbit immunoglobulin with enzyme. Proteolysis of dimethylcasein as substrate revealed that the stoichiometry of inhibition was 1.0 mol of human alpha2-M and 1.5 mol of rabbit IgG antimutalysin II per mole of enzyme. Furthermore, dimethylcasein hydrolysis indicated that several viperid snake venoms, including Bothrops atrox, B. alternatus and Trimeresurus flavoviridis cross-reacted with the specific rabbit antibody to varying degrees. PMID:11544086

  12. Snake venomics of Micrurus alleni and Micrurus mosquitensis from the Caribbean region of Costa Rica reveals two divergent compositional patterns in New World elapids.

    PubMed

    Fernández, Julián; Vargas-Vargas, Nancy; Pla, Davinia; Sasa, Mahmood; Rey-Suárez, Paola; Sanz, Libia; Gutiérrez, José María; Calvete, Juan J; Lomonte, Bruno

    2015-12-01

    Protein composition, toxicity, and neutralization of the venoms of Micrurus alleni and Micrurus mosquitensis, two sympatric monadal coral snakes found in humid environments of the Caribbean region of Costa Rica, were studied. Proteomic profiling revealed that these venoms display highly divergent compositions: the former dominated by three-finger toxins (3FTx) and the latter by phospholipases A2 (PLA2). Protein family abundances correlated with enzymatic and toxic characteristics of the venoms. Selective inhibition experiments showed that PLA2s play only a marginal role in the lethal effect of M. alleni venom, but have a major role in M. mosquitensis venom. Proteomic data gathered from other Micrurus species evidenced that the two divergent venom phenotypes are recurrent, and may constitute a general trend across New World elapids. Further, M. mosquitensis, but not M. alleni, venom contains PLA2-like/Kunitz-type inhibitor complex(es) that resemble the ASIC1a/2-activating MitTx heterodimeric toxin isolated from Micrurus tener venom. The evolutionary origin and adaptive relevance of the puzzling phenotypic variability of Micrurus venoms remain to be understood. An antivenom against the PLA2-predominant Micrurus nigrocinctus venom strongly cross-recognized and neutralized M. mosquitensis venom, but only weakly M. alleni venom.

  13. Ocular Manifestations of Venomous Snake Bite over a One-year Period in a Tertiary Care Hospital

    PubMed Central

    Praveen Kumar, K V; Kasturi, Nirupama; Ahuja, Shashi

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Ocular manifestations in snake-bite injuries are quite rare. However, the unusual presentations, diagnosis and their management can pose challenges when they present to the ophthalmologist. Early detection of these treatable conditions can prevent visual loss in these patients who are systemically unstable and are unaware of their ocular condition. To address this, a study was conducted with the aim of identifying the various ocular manifestations of snake bite in a tertiary care center. Methods This is a one-year institute-based prospective study report of 12 snake bite victims admitted to a tertiary hospital with ocular manifestations between June 2013 to June 2014, which provides data about the demographic characteristics, clinical profiles, ocular manifestations, and their outcomes. Results Twelve cases of snake bite with ocular manifestations were included of which six were viper bites, three were cobra bites and three were unknown bites. Six patients presented with bilateral acute angle closure glaucoma (50%), two patients had anterior uveitis (16.6%) of which one patient had concomitant optic neuritis. One patient had exudative retinal detachment (8.3%), one patient had thrombocytopenia with subconjunctival hemorrhage (8.3%) and two patients had external ophthalmoplegia (16.6%). Conclusions Bilateral angle closure glaucoma was the most common ocular manifestation followed by anterior uveitis and external ophthalmoplegia. Snake bite can result in significant ocular morbidity in a majority of patients but spontaneous recovery with anti-snake venom, steroids and conservative management results in good visual prognosis. PMID:26240510

  14. Cross-Neutralisation of In Vitro Neurotoxicity of Asian and Australian Snake Neurotoxins and Venoms by Different Antivenoms

    PubMed Central

    Silva, Anjana; Hodgson, Wayne C.; Isbister, Geoffrey K.

    2016-01-01

    There is limited information on the cross-neutralisation of neurotoxic venoms with antivenoms. Cross-neutralisation of the in vitro neurotoxicity of four Asian and four Australian snake venoms, four post-synaptic neurotoxins (α-bungarotoxin, α-elapitoxin-Nk2a, α-elapitoxin-Ppr1 and α-scutoxin; 100 nM) and one pre-synaptic neurotoxin (taipoxin; 100 nM) was studied with five antivenoms: Thai cobra antivenom (TCAV), death adder antivenom (DAAV), Thai neuro polyvalent antivenom (TNPAV), Indian Polyvalent antivenom (IPAV) and Australian polyvalent antivenom (APAV). The chick biventer cervicis nerve-muscle preparation was used for this study. Antivenom was added to the organ bath 20 min prior to venom. Pre- and post-synaptic neurotoxicity of Bungarus caeruleus and Bungarus fasciatus venoms was neutralised by all antivenoms except TCAV, which did not neutralise pre-synaptic activity. Post-synaptic neurotoxicity of Ophiophagus hannah was neutralised by all antivenoms, and Naja kaouthia by all antivenoms except IPAV. Pre- and post-synaptic neurotoxicity of Notechis scutatus was neutralised by all antivenoms, except TCAV, which only partially neutralised pre-synaptic activity. Pre- and post-synaptic neurotoxicity of Oxyuranus scutellatus was neutralised by TNPAV and APAV, but TCAV and IPAV only neutralised post-synaptic neurotoxicity. Post-synaptic neurotoxicity of Acanthophis antarcticus was neutralised by all antivenoms except IPAV. Pseudonaja textillis post-synaptic neurotoxicity was only neutralised by APAV. The α-neurotoxins were neutralised by TNPAV and APAV, and taipoxin by all antivenoms except IPAV. Antivenoms raised against venoms with post-synaptic neurotoxic activity (TCAV) cross-neutralised the post-synaptic activity of multiple snake venoms. Antivenoms raised against pre- and post-synaptic neurotoxic venoms (TNPAV, IPAV, APAV) cross-neutralised both activities of Asian and Australian venoms. While acknowledging the limitations of adding antivenom prior to

  15. Neutralization of four Peruvian Bothrops sp. snake venoms by polyvalent antivenoms produced in Perú and Costa Rica: preclinical assessment.

    PubMed

    Rojas, Ermila; Quesada, Lil; Arce, Viviana; Lomonte, Bruno; Rojas, Gustavo; Gutiérrez, José María

    2005-01-01

    Envenomations after bites inflicted by snakes of the genus Bothrops constitute a public health hazard in Perú, and the intravenous administration of equine-derived antivenoms represents the only scientifically validated treatment. This study presents a preclinical assessment of the efficacy of two whole IgG antivenoms, prepared in Perú and Costa Rica, to neutralize the most relevant toxic effects induced by the venoms of Bothrops atrox, B. brazili, B. barnetti and B. pictus from Perú. Peruvian antivenom is produced by immunizing horses with Bothrops sp. venoms from this country, whereas the production of Costa Rican antivenom involves immunization with venoms from Central American snakes. The neutralization of lethal, hemorrhagic, edema-forming, myotoxic, coagulant and defibrinating activities was evaluated in assays involving incubation of venom and antivenom prior to testing. Both antivenoms were effective in the neutralization of these effects, with quantitative variations in the values of effective dose 50% depending on the effects being studied. Peruvian antivenom was more effective in the neutralization of lethality induced by B. atrox and B. barnetti venoms. However, Peruvian antivenom failed to neutralize coagulant activity of B. barnetti venom and edema-forming activity of B. brazili venom, whereas neutralization was achieved by Costa Rican antivenom. It is concluded that an extensive immunological cross-reactivity exists between Bothrops sp. venoms from Perú and Costa Rica, and that both antivenoms are effective in the neutralization of these four venoms in a rodent model of envenoming. PMID:15589801

  16. Biochemical and biological characterization of two serine proteinases from Colombian Crotalus durissus cumanensis snake venom.

    PubMed

    Patiño, Arley Camilo; Pereañez, Jaime Andrés; Gutiérrez, José María; Rucavado, Alexandra

    2013-03-01

    Two clotting serine proteinases, named Cdc SI and Cdc SII, were isolated and characterized for the first time from Colombian Crotalus durissus cumanensis snake venom. The enzymes were purified using two chromatographic steps: molecular exclusion on Sephacryl S-200 and RP-HPLC on C8 Column. The molecular masses of the proteins, determined by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry, were 28,561.4 and 28,799.2 Da for Cdc SI and Cdc SII, respectively. The aim of the present study was to evaluate enzymatic, coagulant and toxic properties of the two enzymes. The serine proteinases hydrolyzed specific chromogenic substrate (BaPNA) and exhibited a Michaelis-Menten behavior. Cdc SI had V(max) of 0.038 ± 0.003 nmol/min and K(M) of 0.034 ± 0.017 mM, while Cdc SII displayed values of V(max) of 0.267 ± 0.011 nmol/min and K(M) of 0.145 ± 0.023 mM. N-terminal sequences were VIGGDEXNIN and VIGGDICNINEHNFLVALYE for Cdc SI and Cdc SII, respectively. Molecular masses, N-terminal sequences, inhibition assays, and enzymatic profile suggest that Cdc SI and Cdc SII belong to the family of snake venom thrombin-like enzymes. These serine proteinases differed in their clotting activity on human plasma, showing a minimum coagulant dose of 25 μg and 0.571 μg for Cdc SI and Cdc SII, respectively. Enzymes also showed coagulant activity on bovine fibrinogen and degraded chain α of this protein. Toxins lack hemorrhagic and myotoxic activities, but are capable to induce defibrin(ogen)ation, moderate edema, and an increase in vascular permeability. These serine proteinases may contribute indirectly to the local hemorrhage induced by metalloproteinases, by causing blood clotting disturbances, and might also contribute to cardiovascular alterations characteristic of patients envenomed by C. d. cumanensis in Colombia.

  17. Allopurinol Reduces the Lethality Associated with Acute Renal Failure Induced by Crotalus durissus terrificus Snake Venom: Comparison with Probenecid

    PubMed Central

    Frezzatti, Rodrigo; Silveira, Paulo Flavio

    2011-01-01

    Background Acute renal failure is one of the most serious complications of envenoming resulting from Crotalus durissus terrificus bites. This study evaluated the relevance of hyperuricemia and oxidative stress and the effects of allopurinol and probenecid in renal dysfunction caused by direct nephrotoxicity of C. d. terrificus venom. Methodology/Principal Findings Hematocrit, protein, renal function and redox status were assessed in mice. High ratio of oxidized/reduced glutathione and hyperuricemia induced by C. d. terrificus venom were ameliorated by both, allopurinol or probenecid, but only allopurinol significantly reduced the lethality caused by C. d. terrificus venom. The effectiveness of probenecid is compromised probably because it promoted hypercreatinemia and hypocreatinuria and worsed the urinary hypo-osmolality in envenomed mice. In turn, the highest effectiveness of allopurinol might be due to its ability to diminish the intracellular formation of uric acid. Conclusions/Significance Data provide consistent evidences linking uric acid with the acute renal failure induced by C. d. terrificus venom, as well as that this envenoming in mice constitutes an attractive animal model suitable for studying the hyperuricemia and that the allopurinol deserves to be clinically evaluated as an approach complementary to anti-snake venom serotherapy. PMID:21909449

  18. Mechanisms of Vascular Damage by Hemorrhagic Snake Venom Metalloproteinases: Tissue Distribution and In Situ Hydrolysis

    PubMed Central

    Baldo, Cristiani; Jamora, Colin; Yamanouye, Norma; Zorn, Telma M.; Moura-da-Silva, Ana M.

    2010-01-01

    Background Envenoming by viper snakes constitutes an important public health problem in Brazil and other developing countries. Local hemorrhage is an important symptom of these accidents and is correlated with the action of snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs). The degradation of vascular basement membrane has been proposed as a key event for the capillary vessel disruption. However, SVMPs that present similar catalytic activity towards extracellular matrix proteins differ in their hemorrhagic activity, suggesting that other mechanisms might be contributing to the accumulation of SVMPs at the snakebite area allowing capillary disruption. Methodology/Principal Findings In this work, we compared the tissue distribution and degradation of extracellular matrix proteins induced by jararhagin (highly hemorrhagic SVMP) and BnP1 (weakly hemorrhagic SVMP) using the mouse skin as experimental model. Jararhagin induced strong hemorrhage accompanied by hydrolysis of collagen fibers in the hypodermis and a marked degradation of type IV collagen at the vascular basement membrane. In contrast, BnP1 induced only a mild hemorrhage and did not disrupt collagen fibers or type IV collagen. Injection of Alexa488-labeled jararhagin revealed fluorescent staining around capillary vessels and co-localization with basement membrane type IV collagen. The same distribution pattern was detected with jararhagin-C (disintegrin-like/cysteine-rich domains of jararhagin). In opposition, BnP1 did not accumulate in the tissues. Conclusions/Significance These results show a particular tissue distribution of hemorrhagic toxins accumulating at the basement membrane. This probably occurs through binding to collagens, which are drastically hydrolyzed at the sites of hemorrhagic lesions. Toxin accumulation near blood vessels explains enhanced catalysis of basement membrane components, resulting in the strong hemorrhagic activity of SVMPs. This is a novel mechanism that underlies the difference between

  19. Lebein, a Snake Venom Disintegrin, Induces Apoptosis in Human Melanoma Cells

    PubMed Central

    Hammouda, Manel B.; Montenegro, María F.; Sánchez-del-Campo, Luis; Zakraoui, Ons; Aloui, Zohra; Riahi-Chebbi, Ichrak; Karoui, Habib; Rodríguez-López, José Neptuno; Essafi-Benkhadir, Khadija

    2016-01-01

    Melanoma, the most threatening form of skin cancer, has a very poor prognosis and is characterized by its very invasive and chemoresistant properties. Despite the recent promising news from the field of immunotherapy, there is an urgent need for new therapeutic approaches that are free of resistance mechanisms and side effects. Anti-neoplasic properties have been highlighted for different disintegrins from snake venom including Lebein; however, the exact effect of Lebein on melanoma has not yet been defined. In this study, we showed that Lebein blocks melanoma cell proliferation and induces a more differentiated phenotype with inhibition of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) phosphorylation and microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF) overexpression. Melanoma cells became detached but were less invasive with upregulation of E-cadherin after Lebein exposure. Lebein induced a caspase-independent apoptotic program with apoptosis inducing factor (AIF), BCL-2-associated X protein (BAX) and Bim overexpression together with downregulation of B-cell lymphoma-2 (BCL-2). It generated a distinct response in reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation and p53 levels depending on the p53 cell line status (wild type or mutant). Therefore, we propose Lebein as a new candidate for development of potential therapies for melanoma. PMID:27399772

  20. Anionic Lipids: Determinants of Binding Cytotoxins from Snake Venom on the Surface of Cell Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Boldyrev, I.A.; Omelkov, A.V.; Utkin, Yu.N.; Efremov, R.G.

    2010-01-01

    The cytotoxic properties of cytotoxins (CTs) from snake venom are mediated by their interaction with the cell membrane. The hydrophobic pattern containing the tips of loops I–III and flanked by polar residues is known to be a membrane–binding motif of CTs. However, this is not enough to explain the difference in activity among various CTs which are similar in sequence and in 3D structure. The mechanism of further CT–membrane interaction leading to pore formation and cell death still remains unknown. Published experimental data on the specific interaction between CT and low molecular weight anionic components (sulphatide) of the bilayer point to the existence of corresponding ligand binding sites on the surface of toxin molecules. In this work we study the membrane–lytic properties of CT I, CT II (Naja oxiana), and Ct 4 (Naja kaouthia), which belong to different structural and functional types (P– and S–type) of CTs, by measuring the intensity of a fluorescent dye, calcein released from liposomes containing a phosphatidylserine (PS) lipid as an anionic component. Using molecular docking simulations, we find and characterize three sites in CT molecules that can potentially bind the PS polar head. Based on the data obtained, we suggest a hypothesis that CTs can specifically interact with one or more of the anionic lipids (in particular, with PS) contained in the membrane, thus facilitating the interaction between CTs and the lipid bilayer of a cell membrane. PMID:22649646

  1. Action of two phospholipases A2 purified from Bothrops alternatus snake venom on macrophages.

    PubMed

    Setúbal, S S; Pontes, A S; Furtado, J L; Xavier, C V; Silva, F L; Kayano, A M; Izidoro, L F M; Soares, A M; Calderon, L A; Stábeli, R G; Zuliani, J P

    2013-02-01

    The in vitro effects of BaltTX-I, a catalytically inactive Lys49 variant of phospholipase A2 (PLA2), and BaltTX-II, an Asp49 catalytically active PLA2 isolated from Bothrops alternatus snake venom, on thioglycollate-elicited macrophages (TG-macrophages) were investigated. At non-cytotoxic concentrations, the secretory PLA2 BaltTX-I but not BaltTX-II stimulated complement receptor-mediated phagocytosis. Pharmacological treatment of TG-macrophages with staurosporine, a protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitor, showed that this kinase is involved in the increase of serum-opsonized zymosan phagocytosis induced by BaltTX-I but not BaltTX-II secretory PLA2, suggesting that PKC may be involved in the stimulatory effect of this toxin in serum-opsonized zymosan phagocytosis. Moreover, BaltTX-I and -II induced superoxide production by TG-macrophages. This superoxide production stimulated by both PLA2s was abolished after treatment of cells with staurosporine, indicating that PKC is an important signaling pathway for the production of this radical. Our experiments showed that, at non-cytotoxic concentrations, BaltTX-I may upregulate phagocytosis via complement receptors, and that both toxins upregulated the respiratory burst in TG-macrophages. PMID:23581990

  2. [Epidemiological panorama of venomous snake bites in the state of Yucatan, Mexico (2003-2012)].

    PubMed

    Yañez-Arenas, Carlos; Yañez-Arenas, Arturo; Martínez-Ortíz, Daly

    2016-01-01

    No information has been yet published on the epidemiological panorama of snakebite in the state of Yucatan. The aim of this study was to evaluate the geographic and temporal patterns of this problem in the state. Snakebite data was obtained from the Program of Zoonosis of the Health Services of Yucatan between 2003 and 2012. A total of 821 snakebite cases and an incidence of 41.9 accidents/100,000 inhabitants were recorded during this period. The annual average cases and incidence were 82.1 and 4.1 (bites/100,000 inhabitants), respectively. The highest number of snakebites occurred in 2005, while in 2003 the lowest number was recorded. Geographically, we observed a great disparity between municipalities, some of them reaching very high levels of incidence. This geographical variation may reflect the distribution and abundance of venomous snakes on one hand, and human population densities and their activities on the other. This study will help health authorities to know preliminarily the magnitude of snakebites in Yucatan and improving strategies to mitigate it. PMID:27595262

  3. Action of two phospholipases A2 purified from Bothrops alternatus snake venom on macrophages.

    PubMed

    Setúbal, S S; Pontes, A S; Furtado, J L; Xavier, C V; Silva, F L; Kayano, A M; Izidoro, L F M; Soares, A M; Calderon, L A; Stábeli, R G; Zuliani, J P

    2013-02-01

    The in vitro effects of BaltTX-I, a catalytically inactive Lys49 variant of phospholipase A2 (PLA2), and BaltTX-II, an Asp49 catalytically active PLA2 isolated from Bothrops alternatus snake venom, on thioglycollate-elicited macrophages (TG-macrophages) were investigated. At non-cytotoxic concentrations, the secretory PLA2 BaltTX-I but not BaltTX-II stimulated complement receptor-mediated phagocytosis. Pharmacological treatment of TG-macrophages with staurosporine, a protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitor, showed that this kinase is involved in the increase of serum-opsonized zymosan phagocytosis induced by BaltTX-I but not BaltTX-II secretory PLA2, suggesting that PKC may be involved in the stimulatory effect of this toxin in serum-opsonized zymosan phagocytosis. Moreover, BaltTX-I and -II induced superoxide production by TG-macrophages. This superoxide production stimulated by both PLA2s was abolished after treatment of cells with staurosporine, indicating that PKC is an important signaling pathway for the production of this radical. Our experiments showed that, at non-cytotoxic concentrations, BaltTX-I may upregulate phagocytosis via complement receptors, and that both toxins upregulated the respiratory burst in TG-macrophages.

  4. Proton NMR assignments and secondary structure of the snake venom protein echistatin

    SciTech Connect

    Yuan Chen; Baum, J. ); Pitzenberger, S.M.; Garsky, V.M.; Lumma, P.K.; Sanyal, G. )

    1991-12-17

    The snake venom protein echistatin is a potent inhibitor of platelet aggregation. The inhibitory properties of echistatin have been attributed to the Arg-Gly-Asp sequence at residues 24-26. In this paper, sequence-specific nuclear magnetic resonance assignments are presented for the proton resonances of echistatin in water. The single-chain protein contains 49 amino acids and 4 cystine bridges. All of the backbone amide, C{sub alpha}H, and side-chain resonances, except for the {eta}-NH of the arginines, have been assigned. The secondary structure of the protein was characterized from the pattern of nuclear Overhauser enhancements, from the identification of slowly exchanging amide protons, from {sup 3}J{sub c{alpha}H-NH} coupling constants, and from circular dichroism studies. The data suggest that the secondary structure consists of a type I {beta}-turn, a short {beta}-hairpin, and a short-, irregular, antiparallel {beta}-sheet and that the Arg-Gly-Asp sequence is in a flexible loop connecting two strands of the distorted antiparallel {beta}-sheet.

  5. [Snake venom proteins related to "vascular endothelial growth factor": new tools for therapeutic angiogenesis].

    PubMed

    Aloui, Z; Essafi-Benkhadir, K; Karoui, H; Gasmi, A

    2013-01-01

    The Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor "VEGF" plays a pivotal role in the stimulation of angiogenesis. The VEGF isoforms (A-D) and PlGF act in a coordinate fashion to develop the vascular network. Numerous proteins closely related in structure and function to VEGF-A have been reported and were grouped in the VEGF family. Some predators make use of VEGF-like molecules with devastating results for their prey. VEGF-E, investigated in 1994, is encoded by the parapoxvirus (Orf virus). VEGF-F is a common term designating molecules which were isolated from snake venom (also known as svVEGF). These proteins are disulphide-linked homodimers of 110 amino acids each and have a molecular weight of approximately 25 kDa. Their primary structures show approximately 50% identity to VEGF-A. However, unlike VEGF-A, they do not contain any N-linked glycosylation sites. They interact with heparin but have a different binding domain from that of VEGF-A. Among species, these svVEGFs vary extensively in amino acid sequences and in receptor-binding specificities towards endogenous VEGF receptors. Understanding the properties that determine the specificity of these interactions could improve our knowledge of the VEGF-receptor interactions. This knowledge is essential to the development of new drugs in angiogenesis. This knowledge is essential to the development of new drugs in angiogenesis.

  6. Lebein, a Snake Venom Disintegrin, Induces Apoptosis in Human Melanoma Cells.

    PubMed

    Hammouda, Manel B; Montenegro, María F; Sánchez-Del-Campo, Luis; Zakraoui, Ons; Aloui, Zohra; Riahi-Chebbi, Ichrak; Karoui, Habib; Rodríguez-López, José Neptuno; Essafi-Benkhadir, Khadija

    2016-01-01

    Melanoma, the most threatening form of skin cancer, has a very poor prognosis and is characterized by its very invasive and chemoresistant properties. Despite the recent promising news from the field of immunotherapy, there is an urgent need for new therapeutic approaches that are free of resistance mechanisms and side effects. Anti-neoplasic properties have been highlighted for different disintegrins from snake venom including Lebein; however, the exact effect of Lebein on melanoma has not yet been defined. In this study, we showed that Lebein blocks melanoma cell proliferation and induces a more differentiated phenotype with inhibition of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) phosphorylation and microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF) overexpression. Melanoma cells became detached but were less invasive with upregulation of E-cadherin after Lebein exposure. Lebein induced a caspase-independent apoptotic program with apoptosis inducing factor (AIF), BCL-2-associated X protein (BAX) and Bim overexpression together with downregulation of B-cell lymphoma-2 (BCL-2). It generated a distinct response in reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation and p53 levels depending on the p53 cell line status (wild type or mutant). Therefore, we propose Lebein as a new candidate for development of potential therapies for melanoma. PMID:27399772

  7. Structural analysis and characterization of new small serum proteins from the serum of a venomous snake (Gloydius blomhoffii).

    PubMed

    Shioi, Narumi; Deshimaru, Masanobu; Terada, Shigeyuki

    2014-01-01

    Some snakes have several anti-toxic proteins in their sera that neutralize their own venom. Five new small serum proteins (SSPs) were isolated from Japanese mamushi (Gloydius blomhoffii) serum by gel-filtration and RP-HPLC, and their N-Terminal sequences were determined. The amino acid sequences of the precursor proteins were deduced from the nucleotide sequences of cDNAs encoding them. Due to the sequence similarity to those of SSPs in habu snake (Protobothrops flavoviridis) serum (>75% identity), these proteins were designated mSSP-1 to mSSP-5 as the homologs of habu proteins. mSSP-1 was stable at 100 °C and in the pH range of 1-10, and inhibited the proteolytic activity of a certain snake venom metalloproteinase. The inhibitory activity was extinguished by modifying the amino groups of mSSP-1. mSSP-1 is the first prostate secretory protein of the 94 amino acid-family protein with a carbohydrate chain in the Asn37 residue.

  8. Platelet-active substances in the venom of Bothrops moojeni snake-a novel evaluation method using whole blood aggregometry.

    PubMed

    Demler, Christine; Bühler, Beatrice; Menin, Laure; Stöcklin, Reto; Wilmer, Marianne; Ernst, Beat; Perchuc, Anna Maria

    2010-01-01

    The objective of the present study was an investigation of the crude Bothrops moojeni venom, aiming at the identification of new compounds with platelet-activating or -inhibiting activity. The venom was separated by gel filtration chromatography into 18 fractions, which were tested by means of whole blood aggregometry for their activities affecting the aggregation of blood platelets. In order to eliminate interferences caused by prothrombin activators or thrombin like-enzymes, which are frequently present in snake venoms, a test method for screening protein mixtures was developed. To avoid clotting of the blood samples, the thrombin inhibitor hirudin and the synthetic inhibitor of fibrin polymerization Pefabloc FG were applied. In the present study, a platelet aggregation activator with an activity resembling thrombocytin from B. atrox was identified in one of the examined venom fractions. In addition, a platelet antagonist-most likely a disintegrin-with broad inhibitory activity against aggregation triggered by collagen, adenosine diphosphate and thrombin receptor activating peptide, was identified. PMID:19938887

  9. Development of a chicken-derived antivenom against the taipan snake (Oxyuranus scutellatus) venom and comparison with an equine antivenom.

    PubMed

    Navarro, Diego; Vargas, Mariángela; Herrera, María; Segura, Álvaro; Gómez, Aarón; Villalta, Mauren; Ramírez, Nils; Williams, David; Gutiérrez, José María; León, Guillermo

    2016-09-15

    A chicken-derived antivenom (ChDAv) towards taipan snake (Oxyuranus scutellatus) venom was produced by purifying anti-taipan IgY from egg yolks of hens immunized with taipan venom. The productivity, antivenomic profile, neutralization ability, pharmacokinetic properties and immunogenicity of the ChDAv were compared with those of an antivenom produced in horses (EDAv). We found that 382 eggs are required to produce the mass of anti-taipan antibodies contained in one liter of equine hyperimmune plasma, and that 63 chickens would be needed to generate the amount of anti-taipan antibodies annually produced by one horse. It was estimated that, in Costa Rica, the production of anti-taipan antibodies could be 40% cheaper if chickens were used as immunoglobulin source, instead of horses. During antivenomic assessment, ChDAv showed lower ability to immunocapture the α subunit of taipoxin, the most important neurotoxin in the venom. ChDAv showed a lower ability to neutralize the coagulant and lethal activities of taipan venom. ChDAv was more immunogenic in rabbits than EDAv, probably due to the fact that chickens are phylogenetically more distant to rabbits than horses. This finding may explain why clearance from rabbit bloodstream was faster for chicken-IgY than for equine-IgG in a pharmacokinetic study. In conclusion, the production of anti-taipan antivenom was less effective when chicken egg yolks were used as source of immunoglobulins instead of horses.

  10. Development of a chicken-derived antivenom against the taipan snake (Oxyuranus scutellatus) venom and comparison with an equine antivenom.

    PubMed

    Navarro, Diego; Vargas, Mariángela; Herrera, María; Segura, Álvaro; Gómez, Aarón; Villalta, Mauren; Ramírez, Nils; Williams, David; Gutiérrez, José María; León, Guillermo

    2016-09-15

    A chicken-derived antivenom (ChDAv) towards taipan snake (Oxyuranus scutellatus) venom was produced by purifying anti-taipan IgY from egg yolks of hens immunized with taipan venom. The productivity, antivenomic profile, neutralization ability, pharmacokinetic properties and immunogenicity of the ChDAv were compared with those of an antivenom produced in horses (EDAv). We found that 382 eggs are required to produce the mass of anti-taipan antibodies contained in one liter of equine hyperimmune plasma, and that 63 chickens would be needed to generate the amount of anti-taipan antibodies annually produced by one horse. It was estimated that, in Costa Rica, the production of anti-taipan antibodies could be 40% cheaper if chickens were used as immunoglobulin source, instead of horses. During antivenomic assessment, ChDAv showed lower ability to immunocapture the α subunit of taipoxin, the most important neurotoxin in the venom. ChDAv showed a lower ability to neutralize the coagulant and lethal activities of taipan venom. ChDAv was more immunogenic in rabbits than EDAv, probably due to the fact that chickens are phylogenetically more distant to rabbits than horses. This finding may explain why clearance from rabbit bloodstream was faster for chicken-IgY than for equine-IgG in a pharmacokinetic study. In conclusion, the production of anti-taipan antivenom was less effective when chicken egg yolks were used as source of immunoglobulins instead of horses. PMID:27373994

  11. Structure-function relationships and mechanism of anticoagulant phospholipase A2 enzymes from snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Kini, R Manjunatha

    2005-06-15

    Phospholipase A(2) (PLA(2)) enzymes from snake venom are toxic and induce a wide spectrum of pharmacological effects, despite similarity in primary, secondary and tertiary structures and common catalytic properties. Thus, the structure-function relationships and the mechanism of this group of small proteins are subtle, complex and intriguing challenges. This review, taking the PLA(2) enzymes from spitting cobra (Naja nigricollis) venom as examples, describes the mechanism of anticoagulant effects. The strongly anticoagulant CM-IV inhibits both the extrinsic tenase and prothrombinase complexes, whereas the weakly anticoagulant PLA(2) enzymes (CM-I and CM-II) inhibit only the extrinsic tenase complex. CM-IV binds to factor Xa and interferes in its interaction with factor Va and the formation of prothrombinase complex. In contrast, CM-I and CM-II do not affect the formation of prothrombinase complex. In addition, CM-IV inhibits the extrinsic tenase complex by a combination of enzymatic and nonenzymatic mechanisms, while CM-I and CM-II inhibit by only enzymatic mechanism. These functional differences explain the disparity in the anticoagulant potency of N. nigricollis PLA(2) enzymes. Similarly, human secretory enzyme binds to factor Xa and inhibits the prothrombinase complex. We predicted the anticoagulant region of PLA(2) enzymes using a systematic and direct comparison of amino acid sequences. This region between 54 and 77 residues is basic in the strongly anticoagulant PLA(2) enzymes and neutral or negatively charged in weakly and non-anticoagulant enzymes. The prediction is validated independently by us and others using both site directed mutagenesis and synthetic peptides. Thus, strongly anticoagulant CM-IV binds to factor Xa (its target protein) through the specific anticoagulant site on its surface. In contrast, weakly anticoagulant enzymes, which lack the anticoagulant region fail to bind specifically to the target protein, factor Xa in the coagulation cascade

  12. Effect of diterpenes isolated of the marine alga Canistrocarpus cervicornis against some toxic effects of the venom of the bothrops jararaca snake.

    PubMed

    Domingos, Thaisa Francielle Souza; Vallim, Magui Aparecida; Cavalcanti, Diana Negrão; Sanchez, Eládio Flores; Teixeira, Valéria Laneuville; Fuly, André Lopes

    2015-01-01

    Snake venoms are composed of a complex mixture of active proteins and peptides which induce a wide range of toxic effects. Envenomation by Bothrops jararaca venom results in hemorrhage, edema, pain, tissue necrosis and hemolysis. In this work, the effect of a mixture of two secodolastane diterpenes (linearol/isolinearol), previously isolated from the Brazilian marine brown alga, Canistrocarpus cervicornis, was evaluated against some of the toxic effects induced by B. jararaca venom. The mixture of diterpenes was dissolved in dimethylsulfoxide and incubated with venom for 30 min at room temperature, and then several in vivo (hemorrhage, edema and lethality) and in vitro (hemolysis, plasma clotting and proteolysis) assays were performed. The diterpenes inhibited hemolysis, proteolysis and hemorrhage, but failed to inhibit clotting and edema induced by B. jararaca venom. Moreover, diterpenes partially protected mice from lethality caused by B. jararaca venom. The search for natural inhibitors of B. jararaca venom in C. cervicornis algae is a relevant subject, since seaweeds are a rich and powerful source of active molecules which are as yet but poorly explored. Our results suggest that these diterpenes have the potential to be used against Bothropic envenomation accidents or to improve traditional treatments for snake bites.

  13. [Isolation and some properties of the proteinase atroxin from the venom of the snake Bothrops atrox].

    PubMed

    Pantigoso, C; Escobar, E; Málaga, O; Yarlequé, A

    1996-01-01

    A proteolytic enzyme from the venom of Bothrops atrox snake was isolated. It was designed as Atroxin, and three chromatography steps were used to purification: ion exchange chromatography on DEAE-Sephadex A-50 equilibrated with 0.05 M Tris HCl buffer, 1 mM CaCl2 pH 7.4, followed by gel filtration on Sephadex G-50 and Sephadex G-100, respectively, using the same buffer. The enzyme was recovered with a 7.4 folds and 11% of yield. It had a high activity on casein being 7.4 optimus pH. A molecular weight was 19.9 Kd calculated by polyacrilamide gel electrophoresis, and head treatment showed that the enzyme preserves its activity in the range of 37-45 degrees C, while it was decrease when the temperature values were higher. On the other hand, 0.133 mumoles of Ca2+ and Mg2+, and Zn2+ ions (0.266 mumoles) were activators, while EDTA (0.20 mumoles) and sodium azide (0.053 mumoles) were inhibitors. The enzymatic activity was not affected by glicerol (1.33 mumoles) and phenyl methyl sulphonyl fluoride (PSMF) (0.16 mumoles). In addition, iodoacetic acid (0.08 mumoles) was slight inhibitor, but 0.16 mumoles of p-tosyl-1-lysine chloromethyl ketone (TLCK) was activator. Biological assays on mice showed that atroxin produced hemorrhagic and necrosis after 24 h of injection, which was increased by 5 mM calcium chloride. PMID:9334451

  14. Phospholipases A2: enzymatic assay for snake venom (Naja naja karachiensis) with their neutralization by medicinal plants of Pakistan.

    PubMed

    Asad, Muhammad H H B; Durr-E-Sabih; Yaqab, Tahir; Murtaza, Ghulam; Hussain, Muhammad S; Hussain, Muhammad S; Nasir, Muhammad T; Azhar, Saira; Khan, Shujaat A; Hussain, Izhar

    2014-01-01

    Phospholipases A2 (PLA2) are the most lethal and noxious component of Naja naja karachiensis venom. They are engaged to induce severe toxicities after their penetration in victims. Present study was designed to highlight hydrolytic actions of PLA. in an egg yolk mixture and to encounter their deleterious effects via medicinal plants of Pakistan. PLA2 were found to produce free fatty acids in a dose dependent manner. Venom at concentration of 0.1 mg was found to liberate 26.6 pmoles of fatty acids with a decline in pH1 of 0.2 owing to the presence of PLA2 (133 Unit/mg). When quantity of venom was increased up to 8 mg, it caused to release 133 pmoles of free fatty acids with a decrease in 1.0 pH due to abundance in PLA, (665 Unit/mg). The rest of other doses of venom (0.3-4.0 mg) was found to liberate fatty acids between these two upper and lower limits. Twenty eight medicinal plants (0.1-0.6 mg) were tried to abort PLA, hydrolytic action, however, all were found useful (50-100%) against PLA,. Bauhinia variegate L., Citrus limon (L.). Burm.f. Enicostemnma hyssopifolium (Willd.) Verdoorn, Ocimum sanctum. Psoralea corylifolia L. and Stenolobium stans (L.) D. Don were found excellent in switching off 100% phospholipases A, at their lowest concentration (0.1 mg). Three plants extract were found useful only at lower concentration (0.1 mg), however, their higher doses were seemed to aggravate venom response. Eight medicinal plants failed to neutralize PLA, rather their higher doses were found effective. Standard antidote and rest of other plants extract were able to show maximum of 50% efficiencies. Therefore, it is necessary to identify and isolate bioactive constituent(s) from above cited six medicinal plants to eradicate the problem of snake bite in the future. PMID:25272888

  15. Preliminary assessment of Hedychium coronarium essential oil on fibrinogenolytic and coagulant activity induced by Bothrops and Lachesis snake venoms

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The search for new inhibitors of snake venom toxins is essential to complement or even replace traditional antivenom therapy, especially in relation to compounds that neutralize the local effects of envenomations. Besides their possible use as alternative to traditional antivenom therapy, some plant species possess bioactive secondary metabolites including essential oils, which can be extracted from weeds that are considered substantial problems for agriculture, such as Hedychium coronarium. Methods The essential oils of leaves and rhizomes from H. coronarium were extracted by hydrodistillation, and their potential inhibitory effects on the coagulant and fibrinogenolytic activities induced by the venoms of Lachesis muta, Bothrops atrox and Bothrops moojeni were analyzed. Citrated human plasma was used to evaluate the clotting time whereas changes in fibrinogen molecules were visualized by electrophoresis in polyacrylamide gel. The experimental design used for testing coagulation inhibition was randomized in a 3 × 2 factorial arrangement (concentration × essential oils), with three replications. The essential oils were compared since they were extracted from different organs of the same botanical species, H. coronarium. Results The results suggest that the oils interact with venom proteases and plasma constituents, since all oils evaluated, when previously incubated with venoms, were able to inhibit the clotting effect, with less inhibition when oils and plasma were preincubated prior to the addition of venoms. Conclusions Thus, after extensive characterization of their pharmacological and toxicological effects, the essential oils can be used as an alternative to complement serum therapy, especially considering that these plant metabolites generally do not require specific formulations and may be used topically immediately after extraction. PMID:26413083

  16. 5'-NUCLEOTIDASES OF NAJA NAJA KARACHIENSIS SNAKE VENOM: THEIR DETERMINATION, TOXICITIES AND REMEDIAL APPROACH BY NATURAL INHIBITORS (MEDICINAL PLANTS).

    PubMed

    Bin Asd, Muhammad Hassham Hassan; Iqbal, Muhammad; Akram, Muhammad Rouf; Khawaja, Naeem Raza; Muneer, Saiqa; Shabbir, Muhammad Zubair; Khan, Muhammad Saqib; Murtaza, Ghulam; Hussain, Izhar

    2016-01-01

    Present study was carried out regarding enzymatic assay for 5'-nucleotidase enzymes present in snake venom Naja naja karachiensis and to evaluate twenty eight medicinal plants as their antidotes. Elevated enzymatic activities i.e., 119, 183, 262 and 335 U/mL were observed in 10, 20, 30 and 40 µg of crude venom, respectively, in dose dependent manner. Among various plant extracts only two (Bauhinia vaiiegate L. and Citms linion (L.) Burm. f.) were found 94% effective at 160 µg to neutralize 112 U/mL activities (p 0.5) while reference standard was proved 93.2% useful at 80 pg to halt 111 U/mL activities. Cedrus deodara G. Don, Enicostemna hyssopifolium (Willd.) Verdoom, Terminalia arjuma Wight & Am. and Zingiber officinalis Rosc. (at 160 µg) were found ≥90% effective (0.5 ≥ p ≥ 0.1) while Citrulus colocynthis, Fogonia cretica L., Rhazya stticta Dcne and Stenolobiun stans (L.) D. Don (at 320 µg) were proved 90% effective (0.05 ≥ p ≥ 0.02). The remaining plant extracts were observed abortive (p ≥ 0.001) in neutralization of 5'-nucleotidases enzymatic actions. This study emphasizes further characterization of active plant extracts to further explore the antivenom influences of these herbal remedies against deleterious effects produced by 5'-nucleotidase enzymes after snake bite envenomation.

  17. Evidence of caspase-mediated apoptosis induced by l-amino acid oxidase isolated from Bothrops atrox snake venom.

    PubMed

    Alves, Raquel Melo; Antonucci, Gilmara Ausech; Paiva, Helder Henrique; Cintra, Adélia Cristina Oliveira; Franco, João José; Mendonça-Franqueiro, Elaine Paula; Dorta, Daniel Junqueira; Giglio, José Roberto; Rosa, José César; Fuly, André Lopes; Dias-Baruffi, Marcelo; Soares, Andreimar Martins; Sampaio, Suely Vilela

    2008-12-01

    The aim of this work was to investigate the involvement of caspases in apoptosis induced by l-amino acid oxidase isolated from Bothrops atrox snake venom. The isolation of LAAO involved three chromatographic steps: molecular exclusion on a G-75 column; ion exchange column by HPLC and affinity chromatography on a Lentil Lectin column. SDS-PAGE was used to confirm the expected high purity level of BatroxLAAO. It is a glycoprotein with 12% sugar and an acidic character, as confirmed by its amino acid composition, rich in "Asp and Glu" residues. It displays high specificity toward hydrophobic l-amino acids. The N-terminal amino acid sequence and internal peptide sequences showed close structural homology to other snake venom LAAOs. This enzyme induces in vitro platelet aggregation, which may be due to H2O2 production by LAAOs, since the addition of catalase completely inhibited the aggregation effect. It also showed cytotoxicity towards several cancer cell lines: HL60, Jurkat, B16F10 and PC12. The cytotoxicity activity was abolished by catalase. A fluorescence microscopy evaluation revealed a significant increase in the apoptotic index of these cells after BatroxLAAO treatment. This observation was confirmed by phosphatidyl serine exposure and activation of caspases. BatroxLAAO is a protein with various biological functions that can be involved in envenomation. Further investigations of its function will contribute to toxicology advances. PMID:18804547

  18. A One Pot Synthesis of Novel Bioactive Tri-Substitute-Condensed-Imidazopyridines that Targets Snake Venom Phospholipase A2

    PubMed Central

    Anilkumar, Nirvanappa C.; Sundaram, Mahalingam S.; Mohan, Chakrabhavi Dhananjaya; Rangappa, Shobith; Bulusu, Krishna C.; Fuchs, Julian E.; Girish, Kesturu S.; Bender, Andreas; Basappa; Rangappa, Kanchugarakoppal S.

    2015-01-01

    Drugs such as necopidem, saripidem, alpidem, zolpidem, and olprinone contain nitrogen-containing bicyclic, condensed-imidazo[1,2-α]pyridines as bioactive scaffolds. In this work, we report a high-yield one pot synthesis of 1-(2-methyl-8-aryl-substitued-imidazo[1,2-α]pyridin-3-yl)ethan-1-onefor the first-time. Subsequently, we performed in silico mode-of-action analysis and predicted that the synthesized imidazopyridines targets Phospholipase A2 (PLA2). In vitro analysis confirmed the predicted target PLA2 for the novel imidazopyridine derivative1-(2-Methyl-8-naphthalen-1-yl-imidazo [1,2-α]pyridine-3-yl)-ethanone (compound 3f) showing significant inhibitory activity towards snake venom PLA2 with an IC50 value of 14.3 μM. Evidently, the molecular docking analysis suggested that imidazopyridine compound was able to bind to the active site of the PLA2 with strong affinity, whose affinity values are comparable to nimesulide. Furthermore, we estimated the potential for oral bioavailability by Lipinski's Rule of Five. Hence, it is concluded that the compound 3f could be a lead molecule against snake venom PLA2. PMID:26196520

  19. 5'-NUCLEOTIDASES OF NAJA NAJA KARACHIENSIS SNAKE VENOM: THEIR DETERMINATION, TOXICITIES AND REMEDIAL APPROACH BY NATURAL INHIBITORS (MEDICINAL PLANTS).

    PubMed

    Bin Asd, Muhammad Hassham Hassan; Iqbal, Muhammad; Akram, Muhammad Rouf; Khawaja, Naeem Raza; Muneer, Saiqa; Shabbir, Muhammad Zubair; Khan, Muhammad Saqib; Murtaza, Ghulam; Hussain, Izhar

    2016-01-01

    Present study was carried out regarding enzymatic assay for 5'-nucleotidase enzymes present in snake venom Naja naja karachiensis and to evaluate twenty eight medicinal plants as their antidotes. Elevated enzymatic activities i.e., 119, 183, 262 and 335 U/mL were observed in 10, 20, 30 and 40 µg of crude venom, respectively, in dose dependent manner. Among various plant extracts only two (Bauhinia vaiiegate L. and Citms linion (L.) Burm. f.) were found 94% effective at 160 µg to neutralize 112 U/mL activities (p 0.5) while reference standard was proved 93.2% useful at 80 pg to halt 111 U/mL activities. Cedrus deodara G. Don, Enicostemna hyssopifolium (Willd.) Verdoom, Terminalia arjuma Wight & Am. and Zingiber officinalis Rosc. (at 160 µg) were found ≥90% effective (0.5 ≥ p ≥ 0.1) while Citrulus colocynthis, Fogonia cretica L., Rhazya stticta Dcne and Stenolobiun stans (L.) D. Don (at 320 µg) were proved 90% effective (0.05 ≥ p ≥ 0.02). The remaining plant extracts were observed abortive (p ≥ 0.001) in neutralization of 5'-nucleotidases enzymatic actions. This study emphasizes further characterization of active plant extracts to further explore the antivenom influences of these herbal remedies against deleterious effects produced by 5'-nucleotidase enzymes after snake bite envenomation. PMID:27476285

  20. Physicochemical characterization and functional analysis of some snake venom toxin proteins and related non-toxin proteins of other chordates.

    PubMed

    Panda, Subhamay; Chandra, Goutam

    2012-01-01

    Snake venom contains a diverse array of proteins and polypeptides. Cytotoxins and short neurotoxins are non-enzymatic polypeptide components of snake venom. The three-dimensional structure of cytotoxin and short neurotoxin resembles a three finger appearance of three-finger protein super family. Different family members of three-finger protein super family are employed in diverse biological functions. In this work we analyzed the cytotoxin, short neurotoxin and related non-toxin proteins of other chordates in terms of functional analysis, amino acid compositional (%) profile, number of amino acids, molecular weight, theoretical isoelectric point (pI), number of positively charged and negatively charged amino acid residues, instability index and grand average of hydropathy with the help of different bioinformatical tools. Among all interesting results, profile of amino acid composition (%) depicts that all sequences contain a conserved cysteine amount but differential amount of different amino acid residues which have a family specific pattern. Involvement in different biological functions is one of the driving forces which contribute the vivid amino acid composition profile of these proteins. Different biological system dependent adaptation gives the birth of enriched bio-molecules. Understanding of physicochemical properties of these proteins will help to generate medicinally important therapeutic molecules for betterment of human lives.

  1. Biochemical characterization of the venom of the coral snake Micrurus tener and comparative biological activities in the mouse and a reptile model.

    PubMed

    Bénard-Valle, Melisa; Carbajal-Saucedo, Alejandro; de Roodt, Adolfo; López-Vera, Estuardo; Alagón, Alejandro

    2014-01-01

    The objective of this study was to identify the venom components that could play a relevant role during envenomation caused by the coral snake Micrurus tener, through its biochemical characterization as well as the analysis of its effects on a murine model. Furthermore, it aimed to evaluate crude venom, in addition to its components, for possible specificity of action on a natural prey model (Conopsis lineata). The toxicity of the crude venom (delivered subcutaneously) showed a significant difference between the Median Lethal Dose (LD₅₀) in mice (4.4 μg/g) and in Conopsis lineata (12.1 μg/g) that was not observed when comparing the Median Paralyzing Dose (PD₅₀) values (mice = 4.7 μg/g; snakes = 4.1 μg/g). These results are evidence that the choice of study model strongly influences the apparent effects of crude venom. Moreover, based on the observed physical signs in the animal models, it was concluded that the most important physical effect caused by the venom is flaccid paralysis, which facilitates capture and subduing of prey regardless of whether it is alive; death is a logical consequence of the lack of oxygenation. Venom fractionation using a C18 reverse phase column yielded 35 fractions from which 16.6% caused paralysis and/or death to both animal models, 21.9% caused paralysis and/or death only to C. lineata and 1.6% were murine specific. Surprisingly, the diversity of snake-specific fractions did not reflect a difference between the PD₅₀s of the crude venom in mice and snakes, making it impossible to assume some type of specificity for either of the study models. Finally, the great diversity and abundance of fractions with no observable effect in snakes or mice (42.7%) suggested that the observed lethal fractions are not the only relevant toxic fractions within the venom and emphasized the possible relevance of interaction between components to generate the syndrome caused by the venom as a whole.

  2. Neuromuscular activity of Bothrops alcatraz snake venom in chick biventer cervicis preparations.

    PubMed

    de Moraes, Delkia Seabra; Aparecido de Abreu, Valdemir; Rostelato-Ferreira, Sandro; Leite, Gildo B; Alice da Cruz-Höfling, Maria; Travaglia-Cardoso, Silvia R; Hyslop, Stephen; Rodrigues-Simioni, Léa

    2012-02-01

    Venom (10-100 μg/ml) from Bothrops alcatraz, a pitviper from the Alcatrazes Archipelago off the coast of southeastern Brazil, caused progressive, irreversible neuromuscular blockade in chick isolated biventer cervicis preparations. The venom also inhibited contractures to exogenous ACh (110 μM) and KCl (20 mM), caused myofiber damage and increased creatine kinase release. Commercial bothropic antivenom raised against mainland Bothrops species neutralized the neuromuscular activity, depending on the venom concentration. PMID:22155137

  3. Snake bite: coral snakes.

    PubMed

    Peterson, Michael E

    2006-11-01

    North American coral snakes are distinctively colored beginning with a black snout and an alternating pattern of black, yellow, and red. They have fixed front fangs and a poorly developed system for venom delivery, requiring a chewing action to inject the venom. The severity of a coral snake bite is related to the volume of venom injected and the size of the victim. The length of the snake correlates positively with the snakes venom yield. Coral snake venom is primarily neurotoxic with little local tissue reaction or pain at the bite site. The net effect of the neurotoxins is a curare like syndrome. In canine victims there have been reports of marked hemolysis with severe anemia and hemoglobinuria. The onset of clinical signs may be delayed for as much as 10 to 18 hours. The victim begins to have alterations in mental status and develops generalized weakness and muscle fasciculations. Progression to paralysis of the limbs and respiratory muscles then follows. The best flied response to coral snake envenomation is rapid transport to a veterinary medical facility capable of 24 hour critical care and assisted ventilation. First aid treatment advocated in Australia for Elapid bites is the immediate use of a compression bandage. The victim should be hospitalized for a minimum of 48 hours for continuous monitoring. The only definitive treatment for coral snake envenomation is the administration of antivenin (M. fulvius). Once clinical signs of coral snake envenomation become manifest they progress with alarming rapidity and are difficult to reverse. If antivenin is not available or if its administration is delayed, supportive care includes respiratory support. Assisted mechanical ventilation can be used but may have to be employed for up to 48 to 72 hours.

  4. Aqueous Leaf Extract of Jatropha gossypiifolia L. (Euphorbiaceae) Inhibits Enzymatic and Biological Actions of Bothrops jararaca Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Félix-Silva, Juliana; Souza, Thiago; Menezes, Yamara A. S.; Cabral, Bárbara; Câmara, Rafael B. G.; Silva-Junior, Arnóbio A.; Rocha, Hugo A. O.; Rebecchi, Ivanise M. M.; Zucolotto, Silvana M.; Fernandes-Pedrosa, Matheus F.

    2014-01-01

    Snakebites are a serious public health problem due their high morbi-mortality. The main available specific treatment is the antivenom serum therapy, which has some disadvantages, such as poor neutralization of local effects, risk of immunological reactions, high cost and difficult access in some regions. In this context, the search for alternative therapies is relevant. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate the antiophidic properties of Jatropha gossypiifolia, a medicinal plant used in folk medicine to treat snakebites. The aqueous leaf extract of the plant was prepared by decoction and phytochemical analysis revealed the presence of sugars, alkaloids, flavonoids, tannins, terpenes and/or steroids and proteins. The extract was able to inhibit enzymatic and biologic activities induced by Bothrops jararaca snake venom in vitro and in vivo. The blood incoagulability was efficiently inhibited by the extract by oral route. The hemorrhagic and edematogenic local effects were also inhibited, the former by up to 56% and the latter by 100%, in animals treated with extract by oral and intraperitoneal routes, respectively. The inhibition of myotoxic action of B. jararaca reached almost 100%. According to enzymatic tests performed, it is possible to suggest that the antiophidic activity may be due an inhibitory action upon snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) and/or serine proteinases (SVSPs), including fibrinogenolytic enzymes, clotting factors activators and thrombin like enzymes (SVTLEs), as well upon catalytically inactive phospholipases A2 (Lys49 PLA2). Anti-inflammatory activity, at least partially, could also be related to the inhibition of local effects. Additionally, protein precipitating and antioxidant activities may also be important features contributing to the activity presented. In conclusion, the results demonstrate the potential antiophidic activity of J. gossypiifolia extract, including its significant action upon local effects, suggesting that

  5. Venom of the Coral Snake Micrurus clarki: Proteomic Profile, Toxicity, Immunological Cross-Neutralization, and Characterization of a Three-Finger Toxin.

    PubMed

    Lomonte, Bruno; Sasa, Mahmood; Rey-Suárez, Paola; Bryan, Wendy; Gutiérrez, José María

    2016-05-05

    Micrurus clarki is an uncommon coral snake distributed from the Southeastern Pacific of Costa Rica to Western Colombia, for which no information on its venom could be found in the literature. Using a 'venomics' approach, proteins of at least nine families were identified, with a moderate predominance of three-finger toxins (3FTx; 48.2%) over phospholipase A₂ (PLA₂; 36.5%). Comparison of this venom profile with those of other Micrurus species suggests that it may represent a more balanced, 'intermediate' type within the dichotomy between 3FTx- and PLA₂-predominant venoms. M. clarki venom was strongly cross-recognized and, accordingly, efficiently neutralized by an equine therapeutic antivenom against M. nigrocinctus, revealing their high antigenic similarity. Lethal activity for mice could be reproduced by a PLA₂ venom fraction, but, unexpectedly, not by fractions corresponding to 3FTxs. The most abundant venom component, hereby named clarkitoxin-I, was identified as a short-chain (type I) 3FTx, devoid of lethal effect in mice, whose target remains to be defined. Its amino acid sequence of 66 residues shows high similarity with predicted sequences of venom gland transcripts described for M. fulvius, M. browni, and M. diastema.

  6. Venom of the Coral Snake Micrurus clarki: Proteomic Profile, Toxicity, Immunological Cross-Neutralization, and Characterization of a Three-Finger Toxin.

    PubMed

    Lomonte, Bruno; Sasa, Mahmood; Rey-Suárez, Paola; Bryan, Wendy; Gutiérrez, José María

    2016-01-01

    Micrurus clarki is an uncommon coral snake distributed from the Southeastern Pacific of Costa Rica to Western Colombia, for which no information on its venom could be found in the literature. Using a 'venomics' approach, proteins of at least nine families were identified, with a moderate predominance of three-finger toxins (3FTx; 48.2%) over phospholipase A₂ (PLA₂; 36.5%). Comparison of this venom profile with those of other Micrurus species suggests that it may represent a more balanced, 'intermediate' type within the dichotomy between 3FTx- and PLA₂-predominant venoms. M. clarki venom was strongly cross-recognized and, accordingly, efficiently neutralized by an equine therapeutic antivenom against M. nigrocinctus, revealing their high antigenic similarity. Lethal activity for mice could be reproduced by a PLA₂ venom fraction, but, unexpectedly, not by fractions corresponding to 3FTxs. The most abundant venom component, hereby named clarkitoxin-I, was identified as a short-chain (type I) 3FTx, devoid of lethal effect in mice, whose target remains to be defined. Its amino acid sequence of 66 residues shows high similarity with predicted sequences of venom gland transcripts described for M. fulvius, M. browni, and M. diastema. PMID:27164141

  7. The Snake with the Scorpion’s Sting: Novel Three-Finger Toxin Sodium Channel Activators from the Venom of the Long-Glanded Blue Coral Snake (Calliophis bivirgatus)

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Daryl C.; Deuis, Jennifer R.; Dashevsky, Daniel; Dobson, James; Jackson, Timothy N. W.; Brust, Andreas; Xie, Bing; Koludarov, Ivan; Debono, Jordan; Hendrikx, Iwan; Hodgson, Wayne C.; Josh, Peter; Nouwens, Amanda; Baillie, Gregory J.; Bruxner, Timothy J. C.; Alewood, Paul F.; Lim, Kelvin Kok Peng; Frank, Nathaniel; Vetter, Irina; Fry, Bryan G.

    2016-01-01

    Millions of years of evolution have fine-tuned the ability of venom peptides to rapidly incapacitate both prey and potential predators. Toxicofera reptiles are characterized by serous-secreting mandibular or maxillary glands with heightened levels of protein expression. These glands are the core anatomical components of the toxicoferan venom system, which exists in myriad points along an evolutionary continuum. Neofunctionalisation of toxins is facilitated by positive selection at functional hotspots on the ancestral protein and venom proteins have undergone dynamic diversification in helodermatid and varanid lizards as well as advanced snakes. A spectacular point on the venom system continuum is the long-glanded blue coral snake (Calliophis bivirgatus), a specialist feeder that preys on fast moving, venomous snakes which have both a high likelihood of prey escape but also represent significant danger to the predator itself. The maxillary venom glands of C. bivirgatus extend one quarter of the snake’s body length and nestle within the rib cavity. Despite the snake’s notoriety its venom has remained largely unstudied. Here we show that the venom uniquely produces spastic paralysis, in contrast to the flaccid paralysis typically produced by neurotoxic snake venoms. The toxin responsible, which we have called calliotoxin (δ-elapitoxin-Cb1a), is a three-finger toxin (3FTx). Calliotoxin shifts the voltage-dependence of NaV1.4 activation to more hyperpolarised potentials, inhibits inactivation, and produces large ramp currents, consistent with its profound effects on contractile force in an isolated skeletal muscle preparation. Voltage-gated sodium channels (NaV) are a particularly attractive pharmacological target as they are involved in almost all physiological processes including action potential generation and conduction. Accordingly, venom peptides that interfere with NaV function provide a key defensive and predatory advantage to a range of invertebrate

  8. Snake venomics of the Lesser Antillean pit vipers Bothrops caribbaeus and Bothrops lanceolatus: correlation with toxicological activities and immunoreactivity of a heterologous antivenom.

    PubMed

    Gutiérrez, José María; Sanz, Libia; Escolano, José; Fernández, Julián; Lomonte, Bruno; Angulo, Yamileth; Rucavado, Alexandra; Warrell, David A; Calvete, Juan J

    2008-10-01

    The venom proteomes of the snakes Bothrops caribbaeus and Bothrops lanceolatus, endemic to the Lesser Antillean islands of Saint Lucia and Martinique, respectively, were characterized by reverse-phase HPLC fractionation, followed by analysis of each chromatographic fraction by SDS-PAGE, N-terminal sequencing, MALDI-TOF mass fingerprinting, and collision-induced dissociation tandem mass spectrometry of tryptic peptides. The venoms contain proteins belonging to seven ( B. caribbaeus) and five ( B. lanceolatus) types of toxins. B. caribbaeus and B. lanceolatus venoms contain phospholipases A 2, serine proteinases, l-amino acid oxidases and zinc-dependent metalloproteinases, whereas a long disintegrin, DC-fragments and a CRISP molecule were present only in the venom of B. caribbaeus, and a C-type lectin-like molecule was characterized in the venom of B. lanceolatus. Compositional differences between venoms among closely related species from different geographic regions may be due to evolutionary environmental pressure acting on isolated populations. The venoms of these two species differed in the composition and the relative abundance of their component toxins, but they exhibited similar toxicological and enzymatic profiles in mice, characterized by lethal, hemorrhagic, edema-forming, phospholipase A 2 and proteolytic activities. The venoms of B. caribbaeus and B. lanceolatus are devoid of coagulant and defibrinogenating effects and induce only mild local myotoxicity in mice. The characteristic thrombotic effect described in human envenomings by these species was not reproduced in the mouse model. The toxicological profile observed is consistent with the abundance of metalloproteinases, PLA 2s and serine proteinases in the venoms. A polyvalent (Crotalinae) antivenom produced in Costa Rica was able to immunodeplete approximately 80% of the proteins from both B. caribbaeus and B. lanceolatus venoms, and was effective in neutralizing the lethal, hemorrhagic, phospholipase

  9. Local inflammatory events induced by Bothrops atrox snake venom and the release of distinct classes of inflammatory mediators.

    PubMed

    Moreira, Vanessa; Dos-Santos, Maria Cristina; Nascimento, Neide Galvão; Borges da Silva, Henrique; Fernandes, Cristina Maria; D'Império Lima, Maria Regina; Teixeira, Catarina

    2012-07-01

    Bothrops atrox is responsible for most accidents involving snakes in the Brazilian Amazon and its venom induces serious systemic and local effects. The local effects are not neutralized effectively by commercial antivenoms, resulting in serious sequelae in individuals bitten by this species. This study investigates the local inflammatory events induced in mice by B. atrox venom (BaV), such as vascular permeability, leukocyte influx and the release of important inflammatory mediators such as cytokines, eicosanoids and the chemokine CCL-2, at the injection site. The effect of BaV on cyclooxygenase (COX-1 and COX-2) expression was also investigated. The results showed that intraperitoneal (i.p.) injection of BaV promoted a rapid and significant increase in vascular permeability, which reached a peak 1 h after venom administration. Furthermore, BaV caused leukocyte infiltration into the peritoneal cavity between 1 and 8 h after i.p. injection, with mononuclear leukocytes (MNs) predominating in the first 4 h, and polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs) in the last 4 h. Increased protein expression of COX-2, but not of COX-1, was detected in leukocytes recruited in the first and fourth hours after injection of BaV. The venom caused the release of eicosanoids PGD₂, PGE₂, TXA₂ and LTB₄, cytokines TNF-α, IL-6, IL-10 and IL-12p70, but not IFN-γ, and chemokine CCL-2 at different times. The results show that BaV is able to induce an early increase in vascular permeability and a leukocyte influx to the injection site consisting mainly of MNs initially and PMNs during the later stages. These phenomena are associated with the production of cytokines, the chemokine CCL-2 and eicosanoids derived from COX-1 and COX-2. PMID:22465491

  10. Crovirin, a Snake Venom Cysteine-Rich Secretory Protein (CRISP) with Promising Activity against Trypanosomes and Leishmania

    PubMed Central

    Adade, Camila M.; Carvalho, Ana Lúcia O.; Tomaz, Marcelo A.; Costa, Tatiana F. R.; Godinho, Joseane L.; Melo, Paulo A.; Lima, Ana Paula C. A.; Rodrigues, Juliany C. F.; Zingali, Russolina B.; Souto-Padrón, Thaïs

    2014-01-01

    Background The neglected human diseases caused by trypanosomatids are currently treated with toxic therapy with limited efficacy. In search for novel anti-trypanosomatid agents, we showed previously that the Crotalus viridis viridis (Cvv) snake venom was active against infective forms of Trypanosoma cruzi. Here, we describe the purification of crovirin, a cysteine-rich secretory protein (CRISP) from Cvv venom with promising activity against trypanosomes and Leishmania. Methodology/Principal Findings Crude venom extract was loaded onto a reverse phase analytical (C8) column using a high performance liquid chromatographer. A linear gradient of water/acetonitrile with 0.1% trifluoroacetic acid was used. The peak containing the isolated protein (confirmed by SDS-PAGE and mass spectrometry) was collected and its protein content was measured. T. cruzi trypomastigotes and amastigotes, L. amazonensis promastigotes and amastigotes and T. brucei rhodesiense procyclic and bloodstream trypomastigotes were challenged with crovirin, whose toxicity was tested against LLC-MK2 cells, peritoneal macrophages and isolated murine extensor digitorum longus muscle. We purified a single protein from Cvv venom corresponding, according to Nano-LC MS/MS sequencing, to a CRISP of 24,893.64 Da, henceforth referred to as crovirin. Human infective trypanosomatid forms, including intracellular amastigotes, were sensitive to crovirin, with low IC50 or LD50 values (1.10–2.38 µg/ml). A considerably higher concentration (20 µg/ml) of crovirin was required to elicit only limited toxicity on mammalian cells. Conclusions This is the first report of CRISP anti-protozoal activity, and suggests that other members of this family might have potential as drugs or drug leads for the development of novel agents against trypanosomatid-borne neglected diseases. PMID:25330220

  11. Bp-13 PLA2: Purification and Neuromuscular Activity of a New Asp49 Toxin Isolated from Bothrops pauloensis Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Sucasaca-Monzón, Georgina; Randazzo-Moura, Priscila; Rocha, Thalita; Vilca-Quispe, Augusto; Ponce-Soto, Luis Alberto; Marangoni, Sérgio; da Cruz-Höfling, Maria Alice; Rodrigues-Simioni, Léa

    2015-01-01

    A new PLA2 (Bp-13) was purified from Bothrops pauloensis snake venom after a single chromatographic step of RP-HPLC on μ-Bondapak C-18. Amino acid analysis showed a high content of hydrophobic and basic amino acids and 14 half-cysteine residues. The N-terminal sequence showed a high degree of homology with basic Asp49 PLA2 myotoxins from other Bothrops venoms. Bp-13 showed allosteric enzymatic behavior and maximal activity at pH 8.1, 36°–45°C. Full Bp-13 PLA2 activity required Ca2+; its PLA2 activity was inhibited by Mg2+, Mn2+, Sr2+, and Cd2+ in the presence and absence of 1 mM Ca2+. In the mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm (PND) preparation, the time for 50% paralysis was concentration-dependent (P < 0.05). Both the replacement of Ca2+ by Sr2+ and temperature lowering (24°C) inhibited the Bp-13 PLA2-induced twitch-tension blockade. Bp-13 PLA2 inhibited the contractile response to direct electrical stimulation in curarized mouse PND preparation corroborating its contracture effect. In biventer cervicis preparations, Bp-13 induced irreversible twitch-tension blockade and the KCl evoked contracture was partially, but significantly, inhibited (P > 0.05). The main effect of this new Asp49 PLA2 of Bothrops pauloensis venom is on muscle fiber sarcolemma, with avian preparation being less responsive than rodent preparation. The study enhances biochemical and pharmacological characterization of B. pauloensis venom. PMID:25789175

  12. Snake venomics of the South and Central American Bushmasters. Comparison of the toxin composition of Lachesis muta gathered from proteomic versus transcriptomic analysis.

    PubMed

    Sanz, Libia; Escolano, José; Ferretti, Massimo; Biscoglio, Mirtha J; Rivera, Elena; Crescenti, Ernesto J; Angulo, Yamileth; Lomonte, Bruno; Gutiérrez, José María; Calvete, Juan J

    2008-04-30

    We report the proteomic characterization of the venoms of two closely related pit vipers of the genus Lachesis, L. muta (South American Bushmaster) and L. stenophrys (Central American Bushmaster), and compare the toxin repertoire of the former revealed through a proteomic versus a transcriptomic approach. The protein composition of the venoms of Lachesis muta and L. stenophrys were analyzed by RP-HPLC, N-terminal sequencing, MALDI-TOF peptide mass fingerprinting and CID-MS/MS. Around 30-40 proteins of molecular masses in the range of 13-110 kDa and belonging, respectively, to only 8 and 7 toxin families were identified in L. muta and L. stenophrys venoms. In addition, both venoms contained a large number of bradykinin-potentiating peptides (BPP) and a C-type natriuretic peptide (C-NP). BPPs and C-NP comprised around 15% of the total venom proteins. In both species, the most abundant proteins were Zn(2+)-metalloproteinases (32-38%) and serine proteinases (25-31%), followed by PLA(2)s (9-12%), galactose-specific C-type lectin (4-8%), l-amino acid oxidase (LAO, 3-5%), CRISP (1.8%; found in L. muta but not in L. stenophrys), and NGF (0.6%). On the other hand, only six L. muta venom-secreted proteins matched any of the previously reported 11 partial or full-length venom gland transcripts, and venom proteome and transcriptome depart in their relative abundances of different toxin families. As expected from their close phylogenetic relationship, the venoms of L. muta and L. stenophrys share (or contain highly similar) proteins, in particular BPPs, serine proteinases, a galactose-specific C-type lectin, and LAO. However, they dramatically depart in their respective PLA(2) complement. Intraspecific quantitative and qualitative differences in the expression of PLA(2) molecules were found when the venoms of five L. muta specimens (3 from Bolivia and 2 from Peru) and the venom of the same species purchased from Sigma were compared. These observations indicate that these class

  13. Occurrence of sulfated fucose branches in fucosylated chondroitin sulfate are essential for the polysaccharide effect preventing muscle damage induced by toxins and crude venom from Bothrops jararacussu snake.

    PubMed

    Monteiro-Machado, Marcos; Tomaz, Marcelo A; Fonseca, Roberto J C; Strauch, Marcelo A; Cons, Bruno L; Borges, Paula A; Patrão-Neto, Fernando C; Tavares-Henriques, Matheus S; Teixeira-Cruz, Jhonatha M; Calil-Elias, Sabrina; Cintra, Adélia C O; Martinez, Ana Maria B; Mourão, Paulo A S; Melo, Paulo A

    2015-05-01

    Snake envenoming is an important public health problem around the world, particularly in tropics. Beyond deaths, morbidity induced by snake venoms, such as myotoxicity, is of pivotal consequence to population. Bothrops jararacussu is the main venomous snake in southeast region of Brazil, and particularly presents strong myotoxic effect. The only available therapy, antibothropic antivenom, poorly affects venom-induced myotoxicity. The aim of this study is to assess the ability of fucosylated chondroitin sulfate (fucCS), a glycosaminoglycan with anticoagulant and antithrombotic properties, and its derivatives to inhibit toxic activities of B. jararacussu crude venom and its isolated toxins, named bothropstoxins (BthTX-I and BthTX-II). The in vitro myotoxic activities induced by crude venom, by BthTX-I alone and by toxins together were abolished by fucCS. Carboxyl reduction (fucCS-CR) kept this ability whereas defucosilation (defucCS) abrogates myoprotection. We observed the same pattern in the response of these polysaccharides in antagonizing the increase in plasma creatine kinase (CK) levels, the reduction of skeletal muscle CK content and the rise of myeloperoxidase (MPO) activity induced by crude venom and isolated toxins. FucCS inhibited edematogenic activity and partially prevented the reduction of total leukocytes in blood when pre-incubated with crude venom. Furthermore, the venom procoagulant effect was completely antagonized by increasing concentrations of fucCS, although this polyanion could stop neither the tail bleeding nor the skin hemorrhage induced by Bothrops jararaca venom. The B. jararacussu phospholipase, hyaluronidase, proteolytic and collagenase activities were inhibited in vitro. The results suggest that fucCS could be able to interact with both toxins, and it is able to inhibit BthTX-II phospholipase activity. Light microscopy of extensor digitorum longus muscle (EDL) muscle showed myoprotection by fucCS, once necrotic areas, edema and

  14. Russell's viper venom levels in serum of snake bite victims in Burma.

    PubMed

    Khin Ohn Lwin; Aye Aye Myint; Tun, P e; Theingie Nwe; Min Naing

    1984-01-01

    Serum levels of venom antigen were measured using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) in 38 Russel's viper bite victims before and after administration of 40 ml of monovalent liquid antivenom. Initial serum levels ranged from one with less than 10.0 ng to 290 ng/ml and in one case a level of 75 ng/ml was detected 27 hours after the bite. Serum venom levels after liquid monospecific antivenom therapy indicated that venom clearance was similar in each case to the natural clearance of venom in the absence of antivenom therapy. In one case a venom level of 11.5 ng/ml was detected 66 hours after liquid antivenom therapy whereas in two fatal cases, serum venom levels of 95 ng/ml and 185 ng/ml were detected after the same interval. Failure of complete neutralization of venom is probably the result of loss of potency of antivenom during improper storage. The amount of venom excreted in the urine was not related to initial serum levels. PMID:6464103

  15. Snake venomics of Macrovipera mauritanica from Morocco, and assessment of the para-specific immunoreactivity of an experimental monospecific and a commercial antivenoms.

    PubMed

    Makran, Bouchra; Fahmi, Laila; Pla, Davinia; Sanz, Libia; Oukkache, Naoual; Lkhider, Mustapha; Ghalim, Noreddine; Calvete, Juan J

    2012-04-18

    Proteomic analysis of the venom of the medically relevant snake Macrovipera mauritanica from Morocco revealed a complex proteome composed of at least 45 toxins from 9 protein families targeting the hemostatic system of the prey or victim. The toxin profile of Moroccan M. mauritanica displays great similarity, but also worth noting departures, with the previously reported venom proteome of M. lebetina from Tunisia. Despite fine compositional differences between these Macrovipera taxa, their overall venom phenotypes explain the clinical picture observed in M. mauritanica and M. lebetina envenomings. However, M. mauritanica venom also contains significant amounts of orphan molecules whose presence in the venom seems to be difficult to rationalize in the context of a predator-prey arms race. The paraspecific immunoreactivity of an experimental monospecific (M. mauritanica) antivenom and a commercial bivalent antivenom, anti-C. cerastes and anti-M. lebetina, against the venoms of Moroccan M. mauritanica and Tunisian M. lebetina, was also investigated through an affinity chromatography-based antivenomics approach. Both antivenoms very efficiently immunodepleted homologous venom toxins and displayed a high degree of paraspecificity, suggesting the clinical utility of the two antivenoms for treating bites of both M. mauritanica or M. lebetina. PMID:22387317

  16. Venom of the Coral Snake Micrurus clarki: Proteomic Profile, Toxicity, Immunological Cross-Neutralization, and Characterization of a Three-Finger Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Lomonte, Bruno; Sasa, Mahmood; Rey-Suárez, Paola; Bryan, Wendy; Gutiérrez, José María

    2016-01-01

    Micrurus clarki is an uncommon coral snake distributed from the Southeastern Pacific of Costa Rica to Western Colombia, for which no information on its venom could be found in the literature. Using a ‘venomics’ approach, proteins of at least nine families were identified, with a moderate predominance of three-finger toxins (3FTx; 48.2%) over phospholipase A2 (PLA2; 36.5%). Comparison of this venom profile with those of other Micrurus species suggests that it may represent a more balanced, ‘intermediate’ type within the dichotomy between 3FTx- and PLA2-predominant venoms. M. clarki venom was strongly cross-recognized and, accordingly, efficiently neutralized by an equine therapeutic antivenom against M. nigrocinctus, revealing their high antigenic similarity. Lethal activity for mice could be reproduced by a PLA2 venom fraction, but, unexpectedly, not by fractions corresponding to 3FTxs. The most abundant venom component, hereby named clarkitoxin-I, was identified as a short-chain (type I) 3FTx, devoid of lethal effect in mice, whose target remains to be defined. Its amino acid sequence of 66 residues shows high similarity with predicted sequences of venom gland transcripts described for M. fulvius, M. browni, and M. diastema. PMID:27164141

  17. Snakes! Snakes! Snakes!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nature Naturally, 1983

    1983-01-01

    Designed for students in grades 4-6, the teaching unit presents illustrations and facts about snakes. Topics include common snakes found in the United States, how snakes eat, how snakes shed their skin, poisonous snakes, the Eastern Indigo snake, and the anatomy of a snake. A student page includes a crossword puzzle and surprising snake facts. A…

  18. In Vitro Antiplasmodial Activity of Phospholipases A2 and a Phospholipase Homologue Isolated from the Venom of the Snake Bothrops asper

    PubMed Central

    Castillo, Juan Carlos Quintana; Vargas, Leidy Johana; Segura, Cesar; Gutiérrez, José María; Pérez, Juan Carlos Alarcón

    2012-01-01

    The antimicrobial and antiparasite activity of phospholipase A2 (PLA2) from snakes and bees has been extensively explored. We studied the antiplasmodial effect of the whole venom of the snake Bothrops asper and of two fractions purified by ion-exchange chromatography: one containing catalytically-active phospholipases A2 (PLA2) (fraction V) and another containing a PLA2 homologue devoid of enzymatic activity (fraction VI). The antiplasmodial effect was assessed on in vitro cultures of Plasmodium falciparum. The whole venom of B. asper, as well as its fractions V and VI, were active against the parasite at 0.13 ± 0.01 µg/mL, 1.42 ± 0.56 µg/mL and 22.89 ± 1.22 µg/mL, respectively. Differences in the cytotoxic activity on peripheral blood mononuclear cells between the whole venom and fractions V and VI were observed, fraction V showing higher toxicity than total venom and fraction VI. Regarding toxicity in mice, the whole venom showed the highest lethal effect in comparison to fractions V and VI. These results suggest that B. asper PLA2 and its homologue have antiplasmodial potential. PMID:23242318

  19. Varespladib (LY315920) Appears to Be a Potent, Broad-Spectrum, Inhibitor of Snake Venom Phospholipase A2 and a Possible Pre-Referral Treatment for Envenomation

    PubMed Central

    Lewin, Matthew; Samuel, Stephen; Merkel, Janie; Bickler, Philip

    2016-01-01

    Snakebite remains a neglected medical problem of the developing world with up to 125,000 deaths each year despite more than a century of calls to improve snakebite prevention and care. An estimated 75% of fatalities from snakebite occur outside the hospital setting. Because phospholipase A2 (PLA2) activity is an important component of venom toxicity, we sought candidate PLA2 inhibitors by directly testing drugs. Surprisingly, varespladib and its orally bioavailable prodrug, methyl-varespladib showed high-level secretory PLA2 (sPLA2) inhibition at nanomolar and picomolar concentrations against 28 medically important snake venoms from six continents. In vivo proof-of-concept studies with varespladib had striking survival benefit against lethal doses of Micrurus fulvius and Vipera berus venom, and suppressed venom-induced sPLA2 activity in rats challenged with 100% lethal doses of M. fulvius venom. Rapid development and deployment of a broad-spectrum PLA2 inhibitor alone or in combination with other small molecule inhibitors of snake toxins (e.g., metalloproteases) could fill the critical therapeutic gap spanning pre-referral and hospital setting. Lower barriers for clinical testing of safety tested, repurposed small molecule therapeutics are a potentially economical and effective path forward to fill the pre-referral gap in the setting of snakebite. PMID:27571102

  20. Varespladib (LY315920) Appears to Be a Potent, Broad-Spectrum, Inhibitor of Snake Venom Phospholipase A2 and a Possible Pre-Referral Treatment for Envenomation.

    PubMed

    Lewin, Matthew; Samuel, Stephen; Merkel, Janie; Bickler, Philip

    2016-01-01

    Snakebite remains a neglected medical problem of the developing world with up to 125,000 deaths each year despite more than a century of calls to improve snakebite prevention and care. An estimated 75% of fatalities from snakebite occur outside the hospital setting. Because phospholipase A2 (PLA2) activity is an important component of venom toxicity, we sought candidate PLA2 inhibitors by directly testing drugs. Surprisingly, varespladib and its orally bioavailable prodrug, methyl-varespladib showed high-level secretory PLA2 (sPLA2) inhibition at nanomolar and picomolar concentrations against 28 medically important snake venoms from six continents. In vivo proof-of-concept studies with varespladib had striking survival benefit against lethal doses of Micrurus fulvius and Vipera berus venom, and suppressed venom-induced sPLA2 activity in rats challenged with 100% lethal doses of M. fulvius venom. Rapid development and deployment of a broad-spectrum PLA2 inhibitor alone or in combination with other small molecule inhibitors of snake toxins (e.g., metalloproteases) could fill the critical therapeutic gap spanning pre-referral and hospital setting. Lower barriers for clinical testing of safety tested, repurposed small molecule therapeutics are a potentially economical and effective path forward to fill the pre-referral gap in the setting of snakebite. PMID:27571102

  1. In vitro antiplasmodial activity of phospholipases A2 and a phospholipase homologue isolated from the venom of the snake Bothrops asper.

    PubMed

    Castillo, Juan Carlos Quintana; Vargas, Leidy Johana; Segura, Cesar; Gutiérrez, José María; Pérez, Juan Carlos Alarcón

    2012-12-01

    The antimicrobial and antiparasite activity of phospholipase A(2) (PLA(2)) from snakes and bees has been extensively explored. We studied the antiplasmodial effect of the whole venom of the snake Bothrops asper and of two fractions purified by ion-exchange chromatography: one containing catalytically-active phospholipases A(2) (PLA(2)) (fraction V) and another containing a PLA(2) homologue devoid of enzymatic activity (fraction VI). The antiplasmodial effect was assessed on in vitro cultures of Plasmodium falciparum. The whole venom of B. asper, as well as its fractions V and VI, were active against the parasite at 0.13 ± 0.01 µg/mL, 1.42 ± 0.56 µg/mL and 22.89 ± 1.22 µg/mL, respectively. Differences in the cytotoxic activity on peripheral blood mononuclear cells between the whole venom and fractions V and VI were observed, fraction V showing higher toxicity than total venom and fraction VI. Regarding toxicity in mice, the whole venom showed the highest lethal effect in comparison to fractions V and VI. These results suggest that B. asper PLA(2) and its homologue have antiplasmodial potential. PMID:23242318

  2. Metalloproteases Affecting Blood Coagulation, Fibrinolysis and Platelet Aggregation from Snake Venoms: Definition and Nomenclature of Interaction Sites

    PubMed Central

    Kini, R. Manjunatha; Koh, Cho Yeow

    2016-01-01

    Snake venom metalloproteases, in addition to their contribution to the digestion of the prey, affect various physiological functions by cleaving specific proteins. They exhibit their activities through activation of zymogens of coagulation factors, and precursors of integrins or receptors. Based on their structure–function relationships and mechanism of action, we have defined classification and nomenclature of functional sites of proteases. These metalloproteases are useful as research tools and in diagnosis and treatment of various thrombotic and hemostatic conditions. They also contribute to our understanding of molecular details in the activation of specific factors involved in coagulation, platelet aggregation and matrix biology. This review provides a ready reference for metalloproteases that interfere in blood coagulation, fibrinolysis and platelet aggregation. PMID:27690102

  3. Crystallization and preliminary crystallographic studies of a phospholipase A2 from the venom of the Brazilian snake Bothrops moojeni.

    PubMed

    Nonato, M C; Garratt, R C; Mascarenhas, Y P; Jesus, W D; Assakura, M T; Serrano, S M; Oliva, G

    2001-04-01

    A phospholipase A(2) purified from the venom of the snake Bothrops moojeni has been crystallized by vapour-diffusion techniques in hanging drops at 291 K. The crystals, which were grown in the absence of Ca(2+), belong to the cubic system, space group P432, with unit-cell parameters a = b = c = 91.86 A, and contain one molecule in the asymmetric unit (V(M) = 2.71 A(3) Da(-1)). X-ray diffraction experiments provide data to 2.35 A resolution collected on a rotating-anode home source at cryogenic temperatures. The structure has been solved via molecular-replacement techniques using a single monomer of the crystallographic structure of the phospholipase from the Western diamondback rattlesnake (Crotalus atrox) as a search model. PMID:11264594

  4. Expression, purification and characterization of recombinant Jerdonitin, a P-II class snake venom metalloproteinase comprising metalloproteinase and disintegrin domains.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Lili; Yuan, Cai; Chen, Zhuo; Wang, Wanyu; Huang, Mingdong

    2010-01-01

    Jerdonitin is a P-II class snake venom metalloproteinase comprising metalloproteinase and disintegrin domains. In this study, we established a high-level expression system in Pichia pastoris and developed a purification strategy for the recombinant Jerdonitin. This recombinant Jerdonitin degraded fibrinogen at a level of activity comparable with its wild type. The effects of recombinant Jerdonitin on inhibiting ADP-induced human platelet aggregation were in a dose-dependent manner with an IC(50) of 248nM. In addition, we reported here that Jerdonitin can significantly inhibit the growth of several cell lines, including human liver cancer cells (Bel7402), human leukemia cells (K562) and human gastric carcinoma cells (BGC823). This study offers recombinant Jerdonitin that will be valuable for further functional and structural studies of Jerdonitin. PMID:19732785

  5. The use of prothrombin activating snake venoms to measure human prethrombin 2: absence of prethrombin 2 in serum.

    PubMed

    Aronson, D L; Franza, B R; Bagley, J

    1984-06-01

    The activation of the prothrombin intermediate, Prethrombin 2, has been studied in order to establish test systems that would enable identification of Prethrombin 2 in serum and Factor IX concentrates. While activation of Prethrombin 2 by Taipan Snake Venom (TSV) was slow and incomplete, inclusion of approximately molar amounts of prothrombin fragments F1 or F1.2 markedly enhanced the amount of thrombin formed by TSV. This effect could also be obtained by the inclusion of serum. Neither normal serum nor Factor V deficient serum contain any identifiable Prethrombin 2. On the other hand substantial amounts of Prethrombin 2 are present in Factor IX concentrates used for the treatment of Christmas Disease (Hemophilia B).

  6. A glycoprotein from a folk medicinal plant, Withania somnifera, inhibits hyaluronidase activity of snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Machiah, Deepa K; Girish, K S; Gowda, T Veerabasappa

    2006-06-01

    Venom hyaluronidases help in rapid spreading of the toxins by destroying the integrity of the extra-cellular matrix of the tissues in the victims. A hyaluronidase inhibitor (WSG) is purified from a folk medicinal plant, Withania somnifera. The glycoprotein inhibited the hyaluronidase activity of cobra (Naja naja) and viper (Daboia russelii) venoms, which was demonstrated by zymogram assay and staining of the skin tissues for differential activity. WSG completely inhibited the activity of the enzyme at a concentration of 1:1 w/w of venom to WSG. Thus we are able to demonstrate that the glycoprotein inhibits hyaluronidase activity of the venoms. External application of the plant extract as an antidote in rural parts of India to snakebite victims appears to have a scientific basis.

  7. Data for a direct fibrinolytic metalloproteinase, barnettlysin-I from Bothrops barnetti (barnett,s pitviper) snake venom with anti-thrombotic effect

    PubMed Central

    Sanchez, Eladio Flores; Richardson, Michael; Gremski, Luiza Helena; Veiga, Silvio Sanches; Yarleque, Armando; Niland, Stephan; Lima, Augusto Martins; Estevao-Costa, Maria Inácia; Eble, Johannes Andreas

    2016-01-01

    Initial association of platelets after vascular injury is mediated by glycoprotein (GP)Ib-IX-V binding to von Willebrand factor (vWf) immobilized on exposed collagens and eventually leads to thrombus formation. This article provides data about a new P-I class snake venom metalloproteinase (SVMP), barnettlysin-I (Bar-I), purified from the venom of Bothrops barnetti. This Data in Brief manuscript complements the main research article by providing additional data of the biochemical characterization of Bar-I 10.1016/j.bbagen.2015.12.021[1]. PMID:27222863

  8. Lymphatic route of transport and pharmacokinetics of Micrurus fulvius (coral snake) venom in sheep.

    PubMed

    Paniagua, D; Jiménez, L; Romero, C; Vergara, I; Calderón, A; Benard, M; Bernas, M J; Rilo, H; de Roodt, A; D' Suze, G; Witte, M H; Boyer, L; Alagón, A

    2012-12-01

    The contribution of the lymphatic system to the absorption and systemic bioavailability of Micrurus fulvius venom after subcutaneous (SC) administration was assessed using a central lymph-cannulated sheep model. Micrurus fulvius venom was administered either by intravenous bolus (IV) or subcutaneous injection (SC) in 12 sheep with and without thoracic duct cannulation and drainage. Venom concentration in serum and lymph was determined by a sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) in samples collected over a 6-hour period and in tissues harvested at the end of the experiment. Pharmacokinetic parameters were determined by a non-compartmental analysis. In the lymphatic cannulated group, over the 6 hours after the venom was administered, 69% of administered dose was accounted for in blood (45%) and lymph (25%). Negligible levels of venom were detected in organs and urine implying that the steady state observed after SC administration is maintained by a slow absorption process. Comparison of kinetics of the thoracic duct cannulated and non-cannulated groups showed that lymphatic absorption contributed in an important way to maintenance of this steady state. These results show that the limiting process in the pharmacokinetics of Micrurus fulvius venom following SC administration is absorption, and that the lymphatic system plays a key role in this process.

  9. Isolation of a galactose-binding lectin from the venom of the snake Bothrops godmani (Godmann's pit viper).

    PubMed

    Lomonte, B; Rojas, G; Gutiérrez, J M; Ramírez, G

    1990-01-01

    A galactose-binding lectin, isolated from the venom of B. godmani by affinity chromatography, is an acidic protein (pI 4.9) with a subunit mol. wt of about 14,000, occurring mostly as a disulfide-linked dimer of 28,000. A small proportion of lectin appears as a monomer and as a tetramer. The lectin agglutinates erythrocytes from mice, rabbit, cow and human (all ABO types, either Rh positive or negative), but does not agglutinate horse, sheep, goat and snake (Oxybelis aeneus, Colubridae) erythrocytes. The agglutinating activity is inhibited by 1 mM EDTA. The lectin is devoid of lethal, hemorrhagic, myotoxic, proteolytic and phospholipase A2 activities. It is not mitogenic for human peripheral blood mononuclear cells. The only effect observed was a moderate induction of edema in the footpad of mice, with a minimal edema-forming dose of 22 micrograms. This effect developed rapidly, and was significantly inhibited by i.p. administration of cyproheptadine, a histamine and serotonin antagonist, before injection of the lectin. Despite the edema-forming activity observed, the low concentration of lectin in crude venom, together with its relatively low potency, suggest that this lectin is not a key component in the development of edema following envenomations by B. godmani.

  10. Inflammatory mediators involved in the paw edema and hyperalgesia induced by Batroxase, a metalloproteinase isolated from Bothrops atrox snake venom.

    PubMed

    De Toni, Lanuze G B; Menaldo, Danilo L; Cintra, Adélia C O; Figueiredo, Maria J; de Souza, Anderson R; Maximiano, William M A; Jamur, Maria C; Souza, Glória E P; Sampaio, Suely V

    2015-09-01

    Snake venom metalloproteinases have been described as responsible for several inflammatory effects. In this study, we investigated the edema and hyperalgesia induced in rats by Batroxase, a P-I metalloproteinase from Bothrops atrox venom, along with possible inflammatory mediators involved in these responses. Batroxase or sterile saline was injected into rat paws and the edema and hyperalgesic effects were evaluated for 6h by using a plethysmometer and a Von Frey system, respectively. Batroxase induced significant edematogenic and hyperalgesic peak responses in the first hours after administration. The inflammatory mediators involved in these responses were assayed by pretreatment of animals with synthesis inhibitors or receptor antagonists. Peak responses were significantly reduced by administration of the glucocorticoid dexamethasone, the H1 receptor antagonist diphenhydramine and the FLAP inhibitor MK-886. Rat paws injected with compound 48/80, a mast cell degranulating agent, followed by Batroxase injection resulted in significant reduction of the edema and hyperalgesia. However, Batroxase itself induced minor degranulation of RBL-2H3 mast cells in vitro. Additionally, the inflammatory responses did not seem to be related to prostaglandins, bradykinin or nitric oxide. Our results indicate a major involvement of histamine and leukotrienes in the edema and hyperalgesia induced by Batroxase, which could be related, at least in part, to mast cell degranulation. PMID:26072684

  11. Lemnitoxin, the major component of Micrurus lemniscatus coral snake venom, is a myotoxic and pro-inflammatory phospholipase A2.

    PubMed

    Casais-E-Silva, Luciana L; Teixeira, Catarina F P; Lebrun, Ivo; Lomonte, Bruno; Alape-Girón, Alberto; Gutiérrez, José María

    2016-08-22

    The venom of Micrurus lemniscatus, a coral snake of wide geographical distribution in South America, was fractionated by reverse-phase HPLC and the fractions screened for phospholipase A2 (PLA2) activity. The major component of the venom, a PLA2, here referred to as 'Lemnitoxin', was isolated and characterized biochemically and toxicologically. It induces myotoxicity upon intramuscular or intravenous injection into mice. The amino acid residues Arg15, Ala100, Asn108, and a hydrophobic residue at position 109, which are characteristic of myotoxic class I phospholipases A2, are present in Lemnitoxin. This PLA2 is antigenically related to M. nigrocinctus nigroxin, Notechis scutatus notexin, Pseudechis australis mulgotoxin, and Pseudonaja textilis textilotoxin, as demonstrated with monoclonal and polyclonal antibodies. Lemnitoxin is highly selective in its targeting of cells, being cytotoxic for differentiated myotubes in vitro and muscle fibers in vivo, but not for undifferentiated myoblasts or endothelial cells. Lemnitoxin is not lethal after intravenous injection at doses up to 2μg/g in mice, evidencing its lack of significant neurotoxicity. Lemnitoxin displays anticoagulant effect on human plasma and proinflammatory activity also, as it induces paw edema and mast cell degranulation. Thus, the results of this work demonstrate that Lemnitoxin is a potent myotoxic and proinflammatory class I PLA2. PMID:27282409

  12. Circulating immune complexes, complement activation kinetics and serum sickness following treatment with heterologous anti-snake venom globulin.

    PubMed

    Nielsen, H; Sørensen, H; Faber, V; Svehag, S E

    1978-01-01

    Consecutive serum and plasma samples, from a patient receiving 100 ml polyvalent horse anti-venom globulin after a rattlesnake bite, were analysed for circulating immune complexes (IC) and activation of complement factors. IC were determined by two independent methods, a complement consumption assay and a Clq-binding assay. Rapidly rising levels of complement-fixing circulating IC were detected as early as 4--5 days after the serum treatment and distinct IC-activity was recorded in both assays on day 8 when clinical symptoms of serum sickness were observed. The IC remained in circulation for at least 5 weeks. Signs of intravascular C-activation in the form of low C3, C4 and C5 values was noted on day 1 after treatment. Factor B was demonstrable 3--4 days after the snake bite and this factor and C3c attained a peak around day 8, just before maximal suppression of native C3 and C4. 14 days after the globulin treatment C3c and B were declining rapidly while C3 and C4 approached normal values first 36 days after treatment. An increase in heterophilic antibodies to sheep erythrocytes was observed after treatment with anti-venom globulin. PMID:635471

  13. Purification and Biochemical Characterization of Three Myotoxins from Bothrops mattogrossensis Snake Venom with Toxicity against Leishmania and Tumor Cells

    PubMed Central

    de Moura, Andréa A.; Kayano, Anderson M.; Oliveira, George A.; Setúbal, Sulamita S.; Ribeiro, João G.; Barros, Neuza B.; Nicolete, Roberto; Moura, Laura A.; Fuly, Andre L.; Nomizo, Auro; da Silva, Saulo L.; Fernandes, Carla F. C.; Zuliani, Juliana P.; Stábeli, Rodrigo G.; Soares, Andreimar M.; Calderon, Leonardo A.

    2014-01-01

    Bothrops mattogrossensis snake is widely distributed throughout eastern South America and is responsible for snakebites in this region. This paper reports the purification and biochemical characterization of three new phospholipases A2 (PLA2s), one of which is presumably an enzymatically active Asp49 and two are very likely enzymatically inactive Lys49 PLA2 homologues. The purification was obtained after two chromatographic steps on ion exchange and reverse phase column. The 2D SDS-PAGE analysis revealed that the proteins have pI values around 10, are each made of a single chain, and have molecular masses near 13 kDa, which was confirmed by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. The N-terminal similarity analysis of the sequences showed that the proteins are highly homologous with other Lys49 and Asp49 PLA2s from Bothrops species. The PLA2s isolated were named BmatTX-I (Lys49 PLA2-like), BmatTX-II (Lys49 PLA2-like), and BmatTX-III (Asp49 PLA2). The PLA2s induced cytokine release from mouse neutrophils and showed cytotoxicity towards JURKAT (leukemia T) and SK-BR-3 (breast adenocarcinoma) cell lines and promastigote forms of Leishmania amazonensis. The structural and functional elucidation of snake venoms components may contribute to a better understanding of the mechanism of action of these proteins during envenomation and their potential pharmacological and therapeutic applications. PMID:24724078

  14. ACUTE KIDNEY INJURY CAUSED BY Crotalus AND Bothrops SNAKE VENOM: A REVIEW OF EPIDEMIOLOGY, CLINICAL MANIFESTATIONS AND TREATMENT

    PubMed Central

    Albuquerque, Polianna L.M.M.; Jacinto, Camilla N.; Silva, Geraldo B.; Lima, Juliana B.; Veras, Maria do Socorro B.; Daher, Elizabeth F.

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Ophidic accidents are an important public health problem due to their incidence, morbidity and mortality. An increasing number of cases have been registered in Brazil in the last few years. Several studies point to the importance of knowing the clinical complications and adequate approach in these accidents. However, knowledge about the risk factors is not enough and there are an increasing number of deaths due to these accidents in Brazil. In this context, acute kidney injury (AKI) appears as one of the main causes of death and consequences for these victims, which are mainly young males working in rural areas. Snakes of the Bothrops and Crotalus genera are the main responsible for renal involvement in ophidic accidents in South America. The present study is a literature review of AKI caused by Bothrops and Crotalus snake venom regarding diverse characteristics, emphasizing the most appropriate therapeutic approach for these cases. Recent studies have been carried out searching for complementary therapies for the treatment of ophidic accidents, including the use of lipoic acid, simvastatin and allopurinol. Some plants, such as Apocynaceae, Lamiaceae and Rubiaceae seem to have a beneficial role in the treatment of this type of envenomation. Future studies will certainly find new therapeutic measures for ophidic accidents. PMID:24037282

  15. Photobiomodulation Protects and Promotes Differentiation of C2C12 Myoblast Cells Exposed to Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    da Silva, Aline; Vieira, Rodolfo Paula; Mesquita-Ferrari, Raquel Agnelli; Cogo, José Carlos; Zamuner, Stella Regina

    2016-01-01

    Background Snakebites is a neglected disease and in Brazil is considered a serious health problem, with the majority of the snakebites caused by the genus Bothrops. Antivenom therapy and other first-aid treatments do not reverse local myonecrose which is the main sequel caused by the envenomation. Several studies have shown the effectiveness of low level laser (LLL) therapy in reducing local myonecrosis induced by Bothropic venoms, however the mechanism involved in this effect is unknown. In this in vitro study, we aimed to analyze the effect of LLL irradiation against cytotoxicity induced by Bothrops jararacussu venom on myoblast C2C12 cells. Methodology C2C12 were utilized as a model target and were incubated with B. jararacussu venom (12.5 μg/mL) and immediately irradiated with LLL at wavelength of red 685 nm or infrared 830 nm with energy density of 2.0, 4.6 and 7.0 J/cm2. Effects of LLL on cellular responses of venom-induced cytotoxicity were examined, including cell viability, measurement of cell damage and intra and extracellular ATP levels, expression of myogenic regulatory factors, as well as cellular differentiation. Results In non-irradiated cells, the venom caused a decrease in cell viability and a massive release of LDH and CK levels indicating myonecrosis. Infrared and red laser at all energy densities were able to considerably decrease venom-induced cytotoxicity. Laser irradiation induced myoblasts to differentiate into myotubes and this effect was accompanied by up regulation of MyoD and specially myogenin. Moreover, LLL was able to reduce the extracellular while increased the intracellular ATP content after venom exposure. In addition, no difference in the intensity of cytotoxicity was shown by non-irradiated and irradiated venom. Conclusion LLL irradiation caused a protective effect on C2C12 cells against the cytotoxicity caused by B. jararacussu venom and promotes differentiation of these cells by up regulation of myogenic factors. A modulatory

  16. Protective effect of schizolobium parahyba flavonoids against snake venoms and isolated toxins.

    PubMed

    F Vale, Luis Henrique; Mendes, Mirian M; Fernandes, Renata S; Costa, Tassia R; S Hage-Melim, Lorane I; A Sousa, Maicon; Hamaguchi, Amelia; Homsi-Brandeburgo, Maria I; Franca, Suzelei C; Silva, Carlos H T P; Pereira, Paulo S; Soares, Andreimar M; Rodrigues, Veridiana M

    2011-01-01

    Four compounds (isoquercitrin, myricetin-3-O-glucoside, catechin and gallocatechin) were isolated from lyophilized aqueous extract of Schizolobium parahyba leaves by chromatography on Sephadex LH-20, followed by semipreparative HPLC using a C-18 column, and identified by 1H and 13C NMR. The compounds were then, tested against hemorrhagic and fibrinogenolytic activities of Bothrops crude venoms and isolated metalloproteinases. The inhibitors neutralized the biological and enzymatic activities of Bothrops venoms and toxins isolated from B. jararacussu and B. neuwiedi venoms. The results showed that gallocatechin and myricetin-3-O-glucoside are good inhibitors of hemorrhagic and fibrinogenolytic activities of metalloproteinases, respectively. Gallocatechin also inhibited the myotoxic activity of both B. alternatus venom and BnSP-6 (Lys49 PhospholipaseA2 from B. neuwiedi). Circular dichroism and docking simulation studies were performed in order to investigate the possible interaction between BnSP-6 and gallocatechin. This is the first time these compounds and their anti-ophidian properties are reported for S. parahyba species. Forthcoming studies involving X-ray co-crystallization, will be of great importance for the development of new therapeutic agents for the treatment of ophidian accidents and for the better understanding of the structure/function relationship of venom toxins.

  17. Tissue Localization and Extracellular Matrix Degradation by PI, PII and PIII Snake Venom Metalloproteinases: Clues on the Mechanisms of Venom-Induced Hemorrhage

    PubMed Central

    Herrera, Cristina; Escalante, Teresa; Voisin, Mathieu-Benoit; Rucavado, Alexandra; Morazán, Diego; Macêdo, Jéssica Kele A.; Calvete, Juan J.; Sanz, Libia; Nourshargh, Sussan; Gutiérrez, José María; Fox, Jay W.

    2015-01-01

    Snake venom hemorrhagic metalloproteinases (SVMPs) of the PI, PII and PIII classes were compared in terms of tissue localization and their ability to hydrolyze basement membrane components in vivo, as well as by a proteomics analysis of exudates collected in tissue injected with these enzymes. Immunohistochemical analyses of co-localization of these SVMPs with type IV collagen revealed that PII and PIII enzymes co-localized with type IV collagen in capillaries, arterioles and post-capillary venules to a higher extent than PI SVMP, which showed a more widespread distribution in the tissue. The patterns of hydrolysis by these three SVMPs of laminin, type VI collagen and nidogen in vivo greatly differ, whereas the three enzymes showed a similar pattern of degradation of type IV collagen, supporting the concept that hydrolysis of this component is critical for the destabilization of microvessel structure leading to hemorrhage. Proteomic analysis of wound exudate revealed similarities and differences between the action of the three SVMPs. Higher extent of proteolysis was observed for the PI enzyme regarding several extracellular matrix components and fibrinogen, whereas exudates from mice injected with PII and PIII SVMPs had higher amounts of some intracellular proteins. Our results provide novel clues for understanding the mechanisms by which SVMPs induce damage to the microvasculature and generate hemorrhage. PMID:25909592

  18. Biochemical Characterization, Action on Macrophages, and Superoxide Anion Production of Four Basic Phospholipases A2 from Panamanian Bothrops asper Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Rueda, Aristides Quintero; Rodríguez, Isela González; Arantes, Eliane C.; Setúbal, Sulamita S.; Calderon, Leonardo de A.; Zuliani, Juliana P.; Stábeli, Rodrigo G.; Soares, Andreimar M.

    2013-01-01

    Bothrops asper (Squamata: Viperidae) is the most important venomous snake in Central America, being responsible for the majority of snakebite accidents. Four basic PLA2s (pMTX-I to -IV) were purified from crude venom by a single-step chromatography using a CM-Sepharose ion-exchange column (1.5 × 15 cm). Analysis of the N-terminal sequence demonstrated that pMTX-I and III belong to the catalytically active Asp49 phospholipase A2 subclass, whereas pMTX-II and IV belong to the enzymatically inactive Lys49 PLA2s-like subclass. The PLA2s isolated from Panama Bothrops asper venom (pMTX-I, II, III, and IV) are able to induce myotoxic activity, inflammatory reaction mainly leukocyte migration to the muscle, and induce J774A.1 macrophages activation to start phagocytic activity and superoxide production. PMID:23509779

  19. Molecular barcoding of venomous snakes and species-specific multiplex PCR assay to identify snake groups for which antivenom is available in Thailand.

    PubMed

    Supikamolseni, A; Ngaoburanawit, N; Sumontha, M; Chanhome, L; Suntrarachun, S; Peyachoknagul, S; Srikulnath, K

    2015-10-30

    DNA barcodes of mitochondrial COI and Cytb genes were constructed from 54 specimens of 16 species for species identification. Intra- and interspecific sequence divergence of the COI gene (10 times) was greater than that of the Cytb gene (4 times), which suggests that the former gene may be a better marker than the latter for species delimitation in snakes. The COI barcode cut-off scores differed by more than 3% between most species, and the minimum interspecific divergence was greater than the maximum intraspecific divergence. Clustering analysis indicated that most species fell into monophyletic clades. These results suggest that these species could be reliably differentiated using COI DNA barcodes. Moreover, a novel species-specific multiplex PCR assay was developed to distinguish between Naja spp, Ophiophagus hannah, Trimeresurus spp, Hydrophiinae, Daboia siamensis, Bungarus fasciatus, and Calloselasma rhodostoma. Antivenom for these species is produced and kept by the Thai Red Cross for clinical use. Our novel PCR assay could easily be applied to venom and saliva samples and could be used effectively for the rapid and accurate identification of species during forensic work, conservation study, and medical research.

  20. Molecular barcoding of venomous snakes and species-specific multiplex PCR assay to identify snake groups for which antivenom is available in Thailand.

    PubMed

    Supikamolseni, A; Ngaoburanawit, N; Sumontha, M; Chanhome, L; Suntrarachun, S; Peyachoknagul, S; Srikulnath, K

    2015-01-01

    DNA barcodes of mitochondrial COI and Cytb genes were constructed from 54 specimens of 16 species for species identification. Intra- and interspecific sequence divergence of the COI gene (10 times) was greater than that of the Cytb gene (4 times), which suggests that the former gene may be a better marker than the latter for species delimitation in snakes. The COI barcode cut-off scores differed by more than 3% between most species, and the minimum interspecific divergence was greater than the maximum intraspecific divergence. Clustering analysis indicated that most species fell into monophyletic clades. These results suggest that these species could be reliably differentiated using COI DNA barcodes. Moreover, a novel species-specific multiplex PCR assay was developed to distinguish between Naja spp, Ophiophagus hannah, Trimeresurus spp, Hydrophiinae, Daboia siamensis, Bungarus fasciatus, and Calloselasma rhodostoma. Antivenom for these species is produced and kept by the Thai Red Cross for clinical use. Our novel PCR assay could easily be applied to venom and saliva samples and could be used effectively for the rapid and accurate identification of species during forensic work, conservation study, and medical research. PMID:26535713

  1. A Heterologous Multiepitope DNA Prime/Recombinant Protein Boost Immunisation Strategy for the Development of an Antiserum against Micrurus corallinus (Coral Snake) Venom

    PubMed Central

    Ramos, Henrique Roman; Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio de Loiola M.; Novo, Juliana Branco; Castro, Karen; Duarte, Clara Guerra; Machado-de-Ávila, Ricardo A.; Chavez-Olortegui, Carlos; Ho, Paulo Lee

    2016-01-01

    Background Envenoming by coral snakes (Elapidae: Micrurus), although not abundant, represent a serious health threat in the Americas, especially because antivenoms are scarce. The development of adequate amounts of antielapidic serum for the treatment of accidents caused by snakes like Micrurus corallinus is a challenging task due to characteristics such as low venom yield, fossorial habit, relatively small sizes and ophiophagous diet. These features make it difficult to capture and keep these snakes in captivity for venom collection. Furthermore, there are reports of antivenom scarcity in USA, leading to an increase in morbidity and mortality, with patients needing to be intubated and ventilated while the toxin wears off. The development of an alternative method for the production of an antielapidic serum, with no need for snake collection and maintenance in captivity, would be a plausible solution for the antielapidic serum shortage. Methods and Findings In this work we describe the mapping, by the SPOT-synthesis technique, of potential B-cell epitopes from five putative toxins from M. corallinus, which were used to design two multiepitope DNA strings for the genetic immunisation of female BALB/c mice. Results demonstrate that sera obtained from animals that were genetically immunised with these multiepitope constructs, followed by booster doses of recombinant proteins lead to a 60% survival in a lethal dose neutralisation assay. Conclusion Here we describe that the genetic immunisation with a synthetic multiepitope gene followed by booster doses with recombinant protein is a promising approach to develop an alternative antielapidic serum against M. corallinus venom without the need of collection and the very challenging maintenance of these snakes in captivity. PMID:26938217

  2. Biochemical and molecular modeling analysis of the ability of two p-aminobenzamidine-based sorbents to selectively purify serine proteases (fibrinogenases) from snake venoms.

    PubMed

    De-Simone, S G; Correa-Netto, C; Antunes, O A C; De-Alencastro, R B; Silva, F P

    2005-08-01

    Snake venoms contain several trypsin-like enzymes with equivalent physicochemical characteristics and similar inhibition profiles. These are rather difficult to separate by classical purification procedures and therefore constitute a good model for affinity chromatography analysis. Some of these trypsin homologues present fibrinogenase activity, mimicking one or more features of the central mammalian coagulation enzyme, thrombin. It was previously demonstrated that a number of amidine derivatives are able to interact specifically with some of these serine proteases. To understand the enzyme-sorbent interactions we have investigated the ability of two commercially available benzamidine affinity matrices to purify thrombin-like serine proteases (TLSP) with similar biological properties from two snake venoms (Bothrops jararacussu and Lachesis muta rhombeata). Curiously, each sorbent retained a single but distinct TLSP from each venom with high yield. Molecular modeling analysis suggested that hydrophobic interactions within a specific region on the surface of these enzymes could be generated to explain this exquisite specificity. In addition, it was demonstrated that a specific tandem alignment of the two benzamidine sorbents enables the purification of three other enzymes from B. jararacussu venom. PMID:15994137

  3. Interisland variegation of venom [Lys(49)]phospholipase A2 isozyme genes in Protobothrops genus snakes in the southwestern islands of Japan.

    PubMed

    Yamaguchi, Kazuaki; Chijiwa, Takahito; Yamamura, Takeshi; Ikeda, Naoki; Yatsui, Takayo; Hayama, Setsuko; Hattori, Shosaku; Oda-Ueda, Naoko; Ohno, Motonori

    2015-12-01

    Protobothrops tokarensis (Pt), a Crotalinae snake, inhabits only Takarajima and Kodakarajima islands of the Tokara Islands located in the immediate north of Amami-Oshima island of Japan. Kodakarajima P. tokarensis venom gland cDNA library gave four types of phospholipase A2 (PLA2) cDNAs encoding neutral [Asp(49)]PLA2, basic [Asp(49)]PLA2, highly basic [Asp(49)]PLA2, and [Lys(49)]PLA2. As the amino acid sequences encoded by their open reading frames (ORFs) were identical to those of PLA2, PLA-B, PLA-N, and BPI (a [Lys(49)]PLA2), respectively, from Amami-Oshima P. flavoviridis (Pf) venom, they were named PtPLA2, PtPLA-B, PtPLA-N, and PtBPI. Chromatography of P. tokarensis venom gave three PLA2 isozymes, PtPLA2, PtPLA-B, and PtBPI. However, BPII and BPIII ([Lys(49)]PLA2s) expressed in Amami-Oshima P. flavoviridis venom were not found in P. tokarensis venom. Genomic polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for P. tokarensis liver DNAs with the unique primers gave PtBPI gene. Notably it was found that LINE (long interspersed nuclear element)-1 fragment is inserted into second intron of PtBPI gene. The LINE-1 fragment may prevent duplication of PtBPI gene and thus formation of plural [Lys(49)]PLA2 genes in P. tokarensis genome. The interisland variegation of venom [Lys(49)]PLA2 isozyme genes in Protobothrops genus snakes in the southwestern islands of Japan is discussed.

  4. Contribution of mast cells and snake venom metalloproteinases to the hyperalgesia induced by Bothrops jararaca venom in rats.

    PubMed

    Bonavita, André Gustavo C; da Costa, Aline S; Pires, Ana Lucia A; Neves-Ferreira, Ana G C; Perales, Jonas; Cordeiro, Renato S B; Martins, Marco A; e Silva, Patrícia M R

    2006-06-15

    Bothrops jararaca venom (Bjv) is known to induce local inflammation and severe pain. Since, mast cells are able to secrete mediators involved in algesic processes, in this study we examined the putative role of these cells in the hyperalgesia triggered by Bjv in the rat paw. We noted that treatment with mast cell stabilizer sodium cromoglicate as well as with histamine and 5-hydroxytriptamine receptor antagonists meclizine and methysergide, respectively, inhibited the Bjv-induced hyperalgesia. In addition, we showed that stimulation of isolated rat peritoneal mast cells with Bjv in vitro resulted in the release of stored and neo-generated inflammatory mediators such as histamine and leukotriene C(4), respectively. Bjv-induced histamine secretion was clearly sensitive to treatment with sodium cromoglicate and sodium nedocromil. We further observed that metalloproteinase inhibitors 1,10-phenantroline and DM43 inhibited mast cell degranulation in vitro, under conditions where inhibitors of phospholipase A(2) as well as of serine- and cysteine-proteinases were inactive. Altogether, our findings indicate that mast cells seem to contribute to the hyperalgesia caused by Bjv in the rat paw, and also provide evidence that this response might be dependent on the ability of the Bjv to activate directly mast cells. PMID:16730041

  5. Natural resistance of opossum (Didelphis marsupialis) to the mapanare (Bothrops lanceolatus) snake venom.

    PubMed

    Pifano, F; Aguilar, I; Giron, M E; Gamboa, N; Rodriguez-Acosta, A

    1993-01-01

    The inactivation of local and general effects of the Mapanare (Bothrops lanceolatus) venom by Opossum's (Didelphis marsupialis) serum fractions was tested using an in vivo assay and an in vitro preincubation experiment. A serum fraction of the Opossum serum has been obtained by immunochemical purification. It is only present in opossum's protective opossum serum fraction (F-0.1). PMID:8186456

  6. Sulfated Galactan from Palisada flagellifera Inhibits Toxic Effects of Lachesis muta Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    da Silva, Ana Cláudia Rodrigues; Ferreira, Luciana Garcia; Duarte, Maria Eugênia Rabello; Noseda, Miguel Daniel; Sanchez, Eladio Flores; Fuly, André Lopes

    2015-01-01

    In Brazil, snakebites are a public health problem and accidents caused by Lachesis muta have the highest mortality index. Envenomation by L. muta is characterized by systemic (hypotension, bleeding and renal failure) and local effects (necrosis, pain and edema). The treatment to reverse the evolution of all the toxic effects is performed by injection of antivenom. However, such therapy does not effectively neutralize tissue damage or any other local effect, since in most cases victims delay seeking appropriate medical care. In this way, alternative therapies are in demand, and molecules from natural sources have been exhaustively tested. In this paper, we analyzed the inhibitory effect of a sulfated galactan obtained from the red seaweed Palisada flagellifera against some toxic activities of L. muta venom. Incubation of sulfated galactan with venom resulted in inhibition of hemolysis, coagulation, proteolysis, edema and hemorrhage. Neutralization of hemorrhage was also observed when the galactan was administered after or before the venom injection; thus mimicking a real in vivo situation. Moreover, the galactan blocked the edema caused by a phospholipase A2 isolated from the same venom. Therefore, the galactan from P. flagellifera may represent a promising tool to treat envenomation by L. muta as a coadjuvant for the conventional antivenom. PMID:26110897

  7. Sulfated Galactan from Palisada flagellifera Inhibits Toxic Effects of Lachesis muta Snake Venom.

    PubMed

    da Silva, Ana Cláudia Rodrigues; Ferreira, Luciana Garcia; Duarte, Maria Eugênia Rabello; Noseda, Miguel Daniel; Sanchez, Eladio Flores; Fuly, André Lopes

    2015-06-11

    In Brazil, snakebites are a public health problem and accidents caused by Lachesis muta have the highest mortality index. Envenomation by L. muta is characterized by systemic (hypotension, bleeding and renal failure) and local effects (necrosis, pain and edema). The treatment to reverse the evolution of all the toxic effects is performed by injection of antivenom. However, such therapy does not effectively neutralize tissue damage or any other local effect, since in most cases victims delay seeking appropriate medical care. In this way, alternative therapies are in demand, and molecules from natural sources have been exhaustively tested. In this paper, we analyzed the inhibitory effect of a sulfated galactan obtained from the red seaweed Palisada flagellifera against some toxic activities of L. muta venom. Incubation of sulfated galactan with venom resulted in inhibition of hemolysis, coagulation, proteolysis, edema and hemorrhage. Neutralization of hemorrhage was also observed when the galactan was administered after or before the venom injection; thus mimicking a real in vivo situation. Moreover, the galactan blocked the edema caused by a phospholipase A2 isolated from the same venom. Therefore, the galactan from P. flagellifera may represent a promising tool to treat envenomation by L. muta as a coadjuvant for the conventional antivenom.

  8. Antigenic cross-reactivity and immunogenicity of Bothrops venoms from snakes of the Amazon region.

    PubMed

    Furtado, Maria de Fátima D; Cardoso, Silvia Travaglia; Soares, Oscar Espellet; Pereira, Aparecida Pietro; Fernandes, Daniel Silva; Tambourgi, Denise Vilarinho; Sant'Anna, Osvaldo Augusto

    2010-04-01

    Snakebites are still a critical public health problem in developing countries or isolated areas. In Brazil, the North Region has a high distribution coefficient worsened by the significant number of eventually unreported cases, due to difficulties in access to health services, to the natural geographic barriers and the vast territory. In the Rio Negro area, the species Bothrops atrox, Bothrops brazili, Lachesis muta muta and Bothriopsis taeniata are thought to be the major species responsible for snakebites. The aim of this study was to qualitatively and quantitatively determine the antigenic cross-reactivity and expression of toxins and the immunogenicity of Bothrops venom species of the Amazon and to evaluate the general efficacy of the therapeutic sera. The in vivo assays demonstrated that the defibrinating activity of B. taeniata venom was absent but that the lethal and hemorrhagic properties were more intense than in the B. atrox venom. The results evidence venom variability among the two B. atrox populations from two distinct Amazonian regions, which may reveal a subjacent speciation process. The results point to new aspects that may guide the improvement of anti-Bothropic therapeutic serum. PMID:20036275

  9. Characterization of monomeric and multimeric snake neurotoxins and other bioactive proteins from the venom of the lethal Australian common copperhead (Austrelaps superbus).

    PubMed

    Marcon, Francesca; Purtell, Louise; Santos, Jerran; Hains, Peter G; Escoubas, Pierre; Graudins, Andis; Nicholson, Graham M

    2013-05-15

    Envenomation by Australian copperheads results mainly in muscle paralysis largely attributed to the presence of postsynaptic α-neurotoxins. However, poorly reversible neurotoxic effects suggest that these venoms may contain snake presynaptic phospholipase A2 neurotoxins (SPANs) that irreversibly inhibit neurotransmitter release. Using size-exclusion liquid chromatography, the present study isolated the first multimeric SPAN complex from the venom of the Australian common copperhead, Austrelaps superbus. The multimeric SPAN P-elapitoxin-As1a (P-EPTX-As1a) along with two novel monomeric SPANs and a new postsynaptic α-neurotoxin were then pharmacologically characterized using the chick biventer cervicis nerve-muscle preparation. All SPANs inhibited nerve-evoked twitch contractions at the neuromuscular junction without inhibiting contractile responses to cholinergic agonists or KCl. These actions are consistent with a prejunctional action to inhibit neurotransmitter release, without direct myotoxicity. Furthermore, the multimeric P-EPTX-As1a caused tetanic 'fade' in muscle tension under high frequency nerve stimulation, and produced a triphasic alteration to neurotransmitter release. These actions have been previously noted with other multimeric SPAN complexes such as taipoxin. Moreover, the neurotoxic α-subunit of P-EPTX-As1a shows high homology to taipoxin α-chain. Several other coagulopathic and myotoxic high mass proteins including a class PIII snake venom metalloproteinase, C-type lectin, l-amino acid oxidase, acetylcholinesterase and phospholipase B were also identified that may contribute to the overall toxicity of A. superbus venom. In conclusion, clinicians should be aware that early antivenom intervention might be necessary to prevent the onset of irreversible presynaptic neurotoxicity caused by multimeric and monomeric SPANs and that A. superbus venom is potentially capable of producing coagulopathic and myotoxic effects. PMID:23500536

  10. Characterization of monomeric and multimeric snake neurotoxins and other bioactive proteins from the venom of the lethal Australian common copperhead (Austrelaps superbus).

    PubMed

    Marcon, Francesca; Purtell, Louise; Santos, Jerran; Hains, Peter G; Escoubas, Pierre; Graudins, Andis; Nicholson, Graham M

    2013-05-15

    Envenomation by Australian copperheads results mainly in muscle paralysis largely attributed to the presence of postsynaptic α-neurotoxins. However, poorly reversible neurotoxic effects suggest that these venoms may contain snake presynaptic phospholipase A2 neurotoxins (SPANs) that irreversibly inhibit neurotransmitter release. Using size-exclusion liquid chromatography, the present study isolated the first multimeric SPAN complex from the venom of the Australian common copperhead, Austrelaps superbus. The multimeric SPAN P-elapitoxin-As1a (P-EPTX-As1a) along with two novel monomeric SPANs and a new postsynaptic α-neurotoxin were then pharmacologically characterized using the chick biventer cervicis nerve-muscle preparation. All SPANs inhibited nerve-evoked twitch contractions at the neuromuscular junction without inhibiting contractile responses to cholinergic agonists or KCl. These actions are consistent with a prejunctional action to inhibit neurotransmitter release, without direct myotoxicity. Furthermore, the multimeric P-EPTX-As1a caused tetanic 'fade' in muscle tension under high frequency nerve stimulation, and produced a triphasic alteration to neurotransmitter release. These actions have been previously noted with other multimeric SPAN complexes such as taipoxin. Moreover, the neurotoxic α-subunit of P-EPTX-As1a shows high homology to taipoxin α-chain. Several other coagulopathic and myotoxic high mass proteins including a class PIII snake venom metalloproteinase, C-type lectin, l-amino acid oxidase, acetylcholinesterase and phospholipase B were also identified that may contribute to the overall toxicity of A. superbus venom. In conclusion, clinicians should be aware that early antivenom intervention might be necessary to prevent the onset of irreversible presynaptic neurotoxicity caused by multimeric and monomeric SPANs and that A. superbus venom is potentially capable of producing coagulopathic and myotoxic effects.

  11. Evolutionary trajectories of snake genes and genomes revealed by comparative analyses of five-pacer viper

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Wei; Wang, Zong-ji; Li, Qi-ye; Lian, Jin-ming; Zhou, Yang; Lu, Bing-zheng; Jin, Li-jun; Qiu, Peng-xin; Zhang, Pei; Zhu, Wen-bo; Wen, Bo; Huang, Yi-jun; Lin, Zhi-long; Qiu, Bi-tao; Su, Xing-wen; Yang, Huan-ming; Zhang, Guo-jie; Yan, Guang-mei; Zhou, Qi

    2016-01-01

    Snakes have numerous features distinctive from other tetrapods and a rich history of genome evolution that is still obscure. Here, we report the high-quality genome of the five-pacer viper, Deinagkistrodon acutus, and comparative analyses with other representative snake and lizard genomes. We map the evolutionary trajectories of transposable elements (TEs), developmental genes and sex chromosomes onto the snake phylogeny. TEs exhibit dynamic lineage-specific expansion, and many viper TEs show brain-specific gene expression along with their nearby genes. We detect signatures of adaptive evolution in olfactory, venom and thermal-sensing genes and also functional degeneration of genes associated with vision and hearing. Lineage-specific relaxation of functional constraints on respective Hox and Tbx limb-patterning genes supports fossil evidence for a successive loss of forelimbs then hindlimbs during snake evolution. Finally, we infer that the ZW sex chromosome pair had undergone at least three recombination suppression events in the ancestor of advanced snakes. These results altogether forge a framework for our deep understanding into snakes' history of molecular evolution. PMID:27708285

  12. Purification and Characterization of BmooAi: A New Toxin from Bothrops moojeni Snake Venom That Inhibits Platelet Aggregation

    PubMed Central

    Ribeiro de Queiroz, Mayara; Mamede, Carla Cristine N.; de Morais, Nadia Cristina G.; Cortes Fonseca, Kelly; Barbosa de Sousa, Bruna; Migliorini, Thaís M.; Pereira, Déborah Fernanda C.; Stanziola, Leonilda; Calderon, Leonardo A.; Simões-Silva, Rodrigo; Martins Soares, Andreimar; de Oliveira, Fábio

    2014-01-01

    In this paper, we describe the purification/characterization of BmooAi, a new toxin from Bothrops moojeni that inhibits platelet aggregation. The purification of BmooAi was carried out through three chromatographic steps (ion-exchange on a DEAE-Sephacel column, molecular exclusion on a Sephadex G-75 column, and reverse-phase HPLC chromatography on a C2/C18 column). BmooAi was homogeneous by SDS-PAGE and shown to be a single-chain protein of 15,000 Da. BmooAi was analysed by MALDI-TOF Spectrometry and revealed two major components with molecular masses 7824.4 and 7409.2 as well as a trace of protein with a molecular mass of 15,237.4 Da. Sequencing of BmooAi by Edman degradation showed two amino acid sequences: IRDFDPLTNAPENTA and ETEEGAEEGTQ, which revealed no homology to any known toxin from snake venom. BmooAi showed a rather specific inhibitory effect on platelet aggregation induced by collagen, adenosine diphosphate, or epinephrine in human platelet-rich plasma in a dose-dependent manner, whereas it had little or no effect on platelet aggregation induced by ristocetin. The effect on platelet aggregation induced by BmooAi remained active even when heated to 100°C. BmooAi could be of medical interest as a new tool for the development of novel therapeutic agents for the prevention and treatment of thrombotic disorders. PMID:24971359

  13. A phospholipase A₂ isolated from Lachesis muta snake venom increases the survival of retinal ganglion cells in vitro.

    PubMed

    da Silva Cunha, Karinne Cristinne; Fuly, André Lopes; de Araujo, Elizabeth Giestal

    2011-03-15

    We have previously showed that a phospholipase A₂ isolated from Lachesis muta snake venom and named LM-PLA₂-I displayed particular biological activities, as hemolysis, inhibition on platelet aggregation, edema induction and myotoxicity. In the present work, we evaluated the effect of LM-PLA₂-I on the survival of axotomized rat retinal ganglion cells kept in vitro, as well as its mechanism of action. Our results clearly showed that treatment with LM-PLA₂-I increased the survival of ganglion cells (100% when compared to control cultures) and the treatment of LM-PLA₂-I with p-bromophenacyl bromide abolished this effect. This result indicates that the effect of LM-PLA₂-I on ganglion cell survival is entirely dependent on its enzymatic activity and the generation of lysophosphatidylcholine (LPC) may be a prerequisite to the observed survival. In fact, commercial LPC mimicked the effect of LM-PLA₂-I upon ganglion cell survival. To investigate the mechanism of action of LM-PLA₂-I, cultures were treated with chelerythrine chloride, BAPTA-AM, rottlerin and also with an inhibitor of c-junc kinase (JNKi). Our results showed that rottlerin and JNK inhibitor abolished the LM-PLA₂-I on ganglion cell survival. Taken together, our results showed that LM-PLA₂-I and its enzymatic product, LPC promoted survival of retinal ganglion cells through the protein kinase C pathway and strongly suggest a possible role of the PLA₂ enzyme and LPC in controlling the survival of axotomized neuronal cells. PMID:21223976

  14. MmTX1 and MmTX2 from coral snake venom potently modulate GABAA receptor activity.

    PubMed

    Rosso, Jean-Pierre; Schwarz, Jürgen R; Diaz-Bustamante, Marcelo; Céard, Brigitte; Gutiérrez, José M; Kneussel, Matthias; Pongs, Olaf; Bosmans, Frank; Bougis, Pierre E

    2015-02-24

    GABAA receptors shape synaptic transmission by modulating Cl(-) conductance across the cell membrane. Remarkably, animal toxins that specifically target GABAA receptors have not been identified. Here, we report the discovery of micrurotoxin1 (MmTX1) and MmTX2, two toxins present in Costa Rican coral snake venom that tightly bind to GABAA receptors at subnanomolar concentrations. Studies with recombinant and synthetic toxin variants on hippocampal neurons and cells expressing common receptor compositions suggest that MmTX1 and MmTX2 allosterically increase GABAA receptor susceptibility to agonist, thereby potentiating receptor opening as well as desensitization, possibly by interacting with the α(+)/β(-) interface. Moreover, hippocampal neuron excitability measurements reveal toxin-induced transitory network inhibition, followed by an increase in spontaneous activity. In concert, toxin injections into mouse brain result in reduced basal activity between intense seizures. Altogether, we characterized two animal toxins that enhance GABAA receptor sensitivity to agonist, thereby establishing a previously unidentified class of tools to study this receptor family.

  15. MmTX1 and MmTX2 from coral snake venom potently modulate GABAA receptor activity

    PubMed Central

    Rosso, Jean-Pierre; Schwarz, Jürgen R.; Diaz-Bustamante, Marcelo; Céard, Brigitte; Gutiérrez, José M.; Kneussel, Matthias; Pongs, Olaf; Bosmans, Frank; Bougis, Pierre E.

    2015-01-01

    GABAA receptors shape synaptic transmission by modulating Cl− conductance across the cell membrane. Remarkably, animal toxins that specifically target GABAA receptors have not been identified. Here, we report the discovery of micrurotoxin1 (MmTX1) and MmTX2, two toxins present in Costa Rican coral snake venom that tightly bind to GABAA receptors at subnanomolar concentrations. Studies with recombinant and synthetic toxin variants on hippocampal neurons and cells expressing common receptor compositions suggest that MmTX1 and MmTX2 allosterically increase GABAA receptor susceptibility to agonist, thereby potentiating receptor opening as well as desensitization, possibly by interacting with the α+/β− interface. Moreover, hippocampal neuron excitability measurements reveal toxin-induced transitory network inhibition, followed by an increase in spontaneous activity. In concert, toxin injections into mouse brain result in reduced basal activity between intense seizures. Altogether, we characterized two animal toxins that enhance GABAA receptor sensitivity to agonist, thereby establishing a previously unidentified class of tools to study this receptor family. PMID:25675485

  16. Anti-cancer effect of snake venom toxin through down regulation of AP-1 mediated PRDX6 expression

    PubMed Central

    Son, Dong Ju; Song, Ho Sub; Kim, Jung Hyun; Ko, Seong Cheol; Song, Min Jong; Lee, Won Hyoung; Yoon, Joo Hee; Ham, Young Wan; Han, Sang Bae; Hong, Jin Tae

    2015-01-01

    Snake venom toxin (SVT) from Vipera lebetina turanica contains a mixture of different enzymes and proteins. Peroxiredoxin 6 (PRDX6) is known to be a stimulator of lung cancer cell growth. PRDX6 is a member of peroxidases, and has calcium-independent phospholipase A2 (iPLA2) activities. PRDX6 has an AP-1 binding site in its promoter region of the gene. Since AP-1 is implicated in tumor growth and PRDX6 expression, in the present study, we investigated whether SVT inhibits PRDX6, thereby preventing human lung cancer cell growth (A549 and NCI-H460) through inactivation of AP-1. A docking model study and pull down assay showed that SVT completely fits on the basic leucine zipper (bZIP) region of c-Fos of AP-1. SVT (0–10 μg/ml) inhibited lung cancer cell growth in a concentration dependent manner through induction of apoptotic cell death accompanied by induction of cleaved caspase-3, -8, -9, Bax, p21 and p53, but decreased cIAP and Bcl2 expression via inactivation of AP-1. In an xenograft in vivo model, SVT (0.5 mg/kg and 1 mg/kg) also inhibited tumor growth accompanied with the reduction of PRDX6 expression, but increased expression of proapoptotic proteins. These data indicate that SVT inhibits tumor growth via inhibition of PRDX6 activity through interaction with its transcription factor AP-1. PMID:26061816

  17. Inhibition of malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum development by crotamine, a cell penetrating peptide from the snake venom.

    PubMed

    El Chamy Maluf, S; Dal Mas, C; Oliveira, E B; Melo, P M; Carmona, A K; Gazarini, M L; Hayashi, M A F

    2016-04-01

    We show here that crotamine, a polypeptide from the South American rattlesnake venom with cell penetrating and selective anti-fungal and anti-tumoral properties, presents a potent anti-plasmodial activity in culture. Crotamine inhibits the development of the Plasmodium falciparum parasites in a dose-dependent manner [IC50 value of 1.87 μM], and confocal microscopy analysis showed a selective internalization of fluorescent-labeled crotamine into P. falciparum infected erythrocytes, with no detectable fluorescence in uninfected healthy erythrocytes. In addition, similarly to the crotamine cytotoxic effects, the mechanism underlying the anti-plasmodial activity may involve the disruption of parasite acidic compartments H(+) homeostasis. In fact, crotamine promoted a reduction of parasites organelle fluorescence loaded with the lysosomotropic fluorochrome acridine orange, in the same way as previously observed mammalian tumoral cells. Taken together, we show for the first time crotamine not only compromised the metabolism of the P. falciparum, but this toxin also inhibited the parasite growth. Therefore, we suggest this snake polypeptide as a promising lead molecule for the development of potential new molecules, namely peptidomimetics, with selectivity for infected erythrocytes and ability to inhibit the malaria infection by its natural affinity for acid vesicles. PMID:26806200

  18. Purification and amino acid sequence of halystase from snake venom of Agkistrodon halys blomhoffii, a serine protease that cleaves specifically fibrinogen and kininogen.

    PubMed

    Matsui, T; Sakurai, Y; Fujimura, Y; Hayashi, I; Oh-Ishi, S; Suzuki, M; Hamako, J; Yamamoto, Y; Yamazaki, J; Kinoshita, M; Titani, K

    1998-03-15

    We have isolated a serine protease, halystase, from Agkistrodon halys blomhoffii venom by chromatography on DEAE-Sepharose, heparin-Sepharose and Q-Sepharose columns, and have determined the complete amino acid sequence by Edman degradation and by mass spectral analysis of peptides generated by enzymatic and chemical cleavage. The 238-residue sequence of halystase, containing N-linked carbohydrates (about 13%) at two sites showed significant similarity to other thrombin-like snake venom serine proteases (66-72%), mammalian tissue kallikrein (42%) and thrombin (26%). Halystase contained the tentative catalytic triad of His43, Asp88 and Ser184 common to all serine proteases and Asp178 in the primary substrate-binding site. Although halystase contained an RGD sequence at residues 181-183, it did not inhibit platelet aggregation induced by ADP or collagen. It hydrolyzed most efficiently a tissue-kallikrein substrate, prolylphenylalanylarginyl-4-methyl-coumaryl-7-amide, and released bradykinin from bovine kininogen. Halystase did not coagulate human plasma, but it cleaved the fibrinogen B beta chain at the carboxyl side of Arg42 and cleaved slowly the fibrogen A alpha chain. Fibrinogen thus treated gradually became insensitive to thrombin. The proteolytic activity was inhibited with diisopropyl fluorophosphate, phenylmethylsulfonyl fluoride or leupeptin. These results indicate that halystase is a serine protease structurally similar to coagulating thrombin-like snake venom proteases, but it specifically cleaves fibrinogen at sites different from thrombin without inducing fibrin clotting, and hydrolyzes kininogen to produce bradykinin, resulting in the reduction of blood pressure.

  19. Mipartoxin-I, a novel three-finger toxin, is the major neurotoxic component in the venom of the redtail coral snake Micrurus mipartitus (Elapidae).

    PubMed

    Rey-Suárez, Paola; Floriano, Rafael Stuani; Rostelato-Ferreira, Sandro; Saldarriaga-Córdoba, Mónica; Núñez, Vitelbina; Rodrigues-Simioni, Léa; Lomonte, Bruno

    2012-10-01

    The major venom component of Micrurus mipartitus, a coral snake distributed from Nicaragua to northern South America, was characterized biochemically and functionally. This protein, named mipartoxin-I, is a novel member of the three-finger toxin superfamily, presenting the characteristic cysteine signature and amino acid sequence length of the short-chain, type-I, α-neurotoxins. Nevertheless, it varies considerably from related toxins, with a sequence identity not higher than 70% in a multiple alignment of 67 proteins within this family. Its observed molecular mass (7030.0) matches the value predicted by its amino acid sequence, indicating lack of post-translational modifications. Mipartoxin-I showed a potent lethal effect in mice (intraperitoneal median lethal dose: 0.06 μg/g body weight), and caused a clear neuromuscular blockade on both avian and mouse nerve-muscle preparations, presenting a post-synaptic action through the cholinergic nicotinic receptor. Since mipartoxin-I is the most abundant (28%) protein in M. mipartitus venom, it should play a major role in its toxicity, and therefore represents an important target for developing a therapeutic antivenom, which is very scarce or even unavailable in the regions where this snake inhabits. The structural information here provided might help in the preparation of a synthetic or recombinant immunogen to overcome the limited venom availability.

  20. Biochemical characterization of the soluble alkaline phosphatase isolated from the venomous snake W. aegyptia.

    PubMed

    Al-Saleh, Saad S M

    2002-12-01

    A soluble form of alkaline phosphatase (ALP) has been identified and purified from Walterinnesia aegyptia venom using an HPLC system Gold 126/1667 equipped with Protein PAK 125 and Protein PAK 60 columns. The enzyme was purified 3.4 fold over crude venom with a yield of 37.3%. On SDS-PAGE under non-reduced conditions the purified enzyme showed three bands of 212 kD, 80 kD, and 55 kD. However, under reducing conditions, the enzyme showed two bands of 80 kD and 55 kD. The specific activity of ALP was 24 U/mg with p-nitrophenylephosphate as the substrate. During isoelectric focusing experiments the ALP exhibited two bands focused at pH 6.2 and 6.8, which suggests that either the enzyme exists as two different isoforms or the two bands in IEF may be two subunits of 80 kD and 55 kD. The kinetic parameters (Km and Vmax) and IC50 of ALP inhibition by L-phenylalanine, L-leucine, imidazole, caffeine, orthophosphate and permanganate were also investigated in the present study. Zinc and cyanide ions at a concentration of 15 mM and 10 mM, respectively, completely inhibited the activity of W. aegyptia ALP. PMID:12503880

  1. Molecular evolution of vertebrate neurotrophins: co-option of the highly conserved nerve growth factor gene into the advanced snake venom arsenalf.

    PubMed

    Sunagar, Kartik; Fry, Bryan Grieg; Jackson, Timothy N W; Casewell, Nicholas R; Undheim, Eivind A B; Vidal, Nicolas; Ali, Syed A; King, Glenn F; Vasudevan, Karthikeyan; Vasconcelos, Vitor; Antunes, Agostinho

    2013-01-01

    Neurotrophins are a diverse class of structurally related proteins, essential for neuronal development, survival, plasticity and regeneration. They are characterized by major family members, such as the nerve growth factors (NGF), brain-derived neurotrophic factors (BDNF) and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3), which have been demonstrated here to lack coding sequence variations and follow the regime of negative selection, highlighting their extremely important conserved role in vertebrate homeostasis. However, in stark contrast, venom NGF secreted as part of the chemical arsenal of the venomous advanced snake family Elapidae (and to a lesser extent Viperidae) have characteristics consistent with the typical accelerated molecular evolution of venom components. This includes a rapid rate of diversification under the significant influence of positive-selection, with the majority of positively-selected sites found in the secreted β-polypeptide chain (74%) and on the molecular surface of the protein (92%), while the core structural and functional residues remain highly constrained. Such focal mutagenesis generates active residues on the toxin molecular surface, which are capable of interacting with novel biological targets in prey to induce a myriad of pharmacological effects. We propose that caenophidian NGFs could participate in prey-envenoming by causing a massive release of chemical mediators from mast cells to mount inflammatory reactions and increase vascular permeability, thereby aiding the spread of other toxins and/or by acting as proapoptotic factors. Despite their presence in reptilian venom having been known for over 60 years, this is the first evidence that venom-secreted NGF follows the molecular evolutionary pattern of other venom components, and thus likely participates in prey-envenomation.

  2. Molecular evolution of vertebrate neurotrophins: co-option of the highly conserved nerve growth factor gene into the advanced snake venom arsenalf.

    PubMed

    Sunagar, Kartik; Fry, Bryan Grieg; Jackson, Timothy N W; Casewell, Nicholas R; Undheim, Eivind A B; Vidal, Nicolas; Ali, Syed A; King, Glenn F; Vasudevan, Karthikeyan; Vasconcelos, Vitor; Antunes, Agostinho

    2013-01-01

    Neurotrophins are a diverse class of structurally related proteins, essential for neuronal development, survival, plasticity and regeneration. They are characterized by major family members, such as the nerve growth factors (NGF), brain-derived neurotrophic factors (BDNF) and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3), which have been demonstrated here to lack coding sequence variations and follow the regime of negative selection, highlighting their extremely important conserved role in vertebrate homeostasis. However, in stark contrast, venom NGF secreted as part of the chemical arsenal of the venomous advanced snake family Elapidae (and to a lesser extent Viperidae) have characteristics consistent with the typical accelerated molecular evolution of venom components. This includes a rapid rate of diversification under the significant influence of positive-selection, with the majority of positively-selected sites found in the secreted β-polypeptide chain (74%) and on the molecular surface of the protein (92%), while the core structural and functional residues remain highly constrained. Such focal mutagenesis generates active residues on the toxin molecular surface, which are capable of interacting with novel biological targets in prey to induce a myriad of pharmacological effects. We propose that caenophidian NGFs could participate in prey-envenoming by causing a massive release of chemical mediators from mast cells to mount inflammatory reactions and increase vascular permeability, thereby aiding the spread of other toxins and/or by acting as proapoptotic factors. Despite their presence in reptilian venom having been known for over 60 years, this is the first evidence that venom-secreted NGF follows the molecular evolutionary pattern of other venom components, and thus likely participates in prey-envenomation. PMID:24312363

  3. Molecular Evolution of Vertebrate Neurotrophins: Co-Option of the Highly Conserved Nerve Growth Factor Gene into the Advanced Snake Venom Arsenalf

    PubMed Central

    Sunagar, Kartik; Fry, Bryan Grieg; Jackson, Timothy N. W.; Casewell, Nicholas R.; Undheim, Eivind A. B.; Vidal, Nicolas; Ali, Syed A.; King, Glenn F.; Vasudevan, Karthikeyan; Vasconcelos, Vitor; Antunes, Agostinho

    2013-01-01

    Neurotrophins are a diverse class of structurally related proteins, essential for neuronal development, survival, plasticity and regeneration. They are characterized by major family members, such as the nerve growth factors (NGF), brain-derived neurotrophic factors (BDNF) and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3), which have been demonstrated here to lack coding sequence variations and follow the regime of negative selection, highlighting their extremely important conserved role in vertebrate homeostasis. However, in stark contrast, venom NGF secreted as part of the chemical arsenal of the venomous advanced snake family Elapidae (and to a lesser extent Viperidae) have characteristics consistent with the typical accelerated molecular evolution of venom components. This includes a rapid rate of diversification under the significant influence of positive-selection, with the majority of positively-selected sites found in the secreted β-polypeptide chain (74%) and on the molecular surface of the protein (92%), while the core structural and functional residues remain highly constrained. Such focal mutagenesis generates active residues on the toxin molecular surface, which are capable of interacting with novel biological targets in prey to induce a myriad of pharmacological effects. We propose that caenophidian NGFs could participate in prey-envenoming by causing a massive release of chemical mediators from mast cells to mount inflammatory reactions and increase vascular permeability, thereby aiding the spread of other toxins and/or by acting as proapoptotic factors. Despite their presence in reptilian venom having been known for over 60 years, this is the first evidence that venom-secreted NGF follows the molecular evolutionary pattern of other venom components, and thus likely participates in prey-envenomation. PMID:24312363

  4. Crystal structure of Jararacussin-I: the highly negatively charged catalytic interface contributes to macromolecular selectivity in snake venom thrombin-like enzymes.

    PubMed

    Ullah, A; Souza, T A C B; Zanphorlin, L M; Mariutti, R B; Santana, V S; Murakami, M T; Arni, R K

    2013-01-01

    Snake venom serine proteinases (SVSPs) are hemostatically active toxins that perturb the maintenance and regulation of both the blood coagulation cascade and fibrinolytic feedback system at specific points, and hence, are widely used as tools in pharmacological and clinical diagnosis. The crystal structure of a thrombin-like enzyme (TLE) from Bothrops jararacussu venom (Jararacussin-I) was determined at 2.48 Å resolution. This is the first crystal structure of a TLE and allows structural comparisons with both the Agkistrodon contortrix contortrix Protein C Activator and the Trimeresurus stejnegeri plasminogen activator. Despite the highly conserved overall fold, significant differences in the amino acid compositions and three-dimensional conformations of the loops surrounding the active site significantly alter the molecular topography and charge distribution profile of the catalytic interface. In contrast to other SVSPs, the catalytic interface of Jararacussin-I is highly negatively charged, which contributes to its unique macromolecular selectivity. PMID:23139169

  5. In vitro snake venom detoxifying action of some marine algae of Gulf of Mannar, south-east coast of India.

    PubMed

    Vasanthi, Hannah R; Jaswanth, A; Krishnaraj, V; Rajamanickam, G V; Saraswathy, A

    2003-12-01

    The extract of the brown seaweed Padina boergesenii and the red seaweed Hypnea valentiae was found to detoxify (in vitro) the venom of Naja nigricollis. There was a remarkable reduction in the mortality of albino mice after intraperitoneal (i.p.) administration of reconstituted venom with the extract compared to those challenged with the venom only. The survival of the animals exposed to the venom incubated with the different concentrations of the extract was used as the in vitro detoxification parameter.

  6. Intravascular hemolysis induced by the venom of the Eastern coral snake, Micrurus fulvius, in a mouse model: identification of directly hemolytic phospholipases A2.

    PubMed

    Arce-Bejarano, Ruth; Lomonte, Bruno; Gutiérrez, José María

    2014-11-01

    Intravascular hemolysis has been described in envenomings by the Eastern coral snake, Micrurus fulvius, in dogs. An experimental model of intravascular hemolysis was developed in mice after intravenous (i.v.) injection of M. fulvius venom. Within one hr, there was prominent hemolysis, associated with a drastic drop in hematocrit, morphological alterations of erythrocytes, hemoglobinemia, and hemoglobinuria. Hemoglobin was identified in urine by mass spectrometry. Histological sections of kidney revealed abundant hyaline casts, probably corresponding to hemoglobin. This effect was abrogated by p-bromophenacyl bromide, indicating that it is caused by phospholipases A2 (PLA2). A monospecific anti-Micrurus nigrocinctus antivenom neutralized hemolytic activity in vivo. When tested in vitro with erythrocytes of various species, a clear difference in susceptibility was observed. Mouse and dog erythrocytes showed the highest susceptibility, whereas human and rabbit erythrocytes were not affected at the experimental conditions tested. The higher susceptibility of dog and mouse erythrocytes correlates with a high ratio of phosphatidylcholine/sphingomyelin in erythrocyte plasma membrane. When mouse erythrocytes were subjected to mechanical stress, after incubation with venom, hemolysis increased significantly, suggesting that both phospholipid hydrolysis by PLA2s and mechanical stress associated with rheological factors are likely to contribute to cell lysis in vivo. Several PLA2s isolated from this venom reproduced the hemolytic effect, and the complete amino acid sequence of one of them (fraction 17), which also induces myotoxicity, is reported. Since very few PLA2s inducing intravascular hemolysis have been described from snake venoms, this enzyme is a valuable tool to identify the structural determinants of hemolytic activity. The mouse model described in this study may be useful to explore the pathophysiology of intravascular hemolysis.

  7. Functional characterization of recombinant batroxobin, a snake venom thrombin-like enzyme, expressed from Pichia pastoris.

    PubMed

    You, Weon-Kyoo; Choi, Won-Seok; Koh, You-Seok; Shin, Hang-Cheol; Jang, Yangsoo; Chung, Kwang-Hoe

    2004-07-30

    A thrombin-like enzyme of Bothrops atrox moojeni venom, batroxobin, specifically cleaves fibrinogen alpha chain, resulting in the formation of non-crosslinked fibrin clots. The cDNA encoding batroxobin was cloned, expressed in Pichia pastoris and the molecular function of purified recombinant protein was also characterized. The recombinant batroxobin had an apparent molecular weight of 33 kDa by SDS-PAGE analysis and biochemical activities similar to those of native batroxobin. The purified recombinant protein strongly converted fibrinogen into fibrin clot in vitro, and shortened bleeding time and whole blood coagulation time in vivo. However, it did not make any considerable alterations on other blood coagulation factors. Several lines of experimental evidence in this study suggest that the recombinant batroxobin is a potent pro-coagulant agent. PMID:15280019

  8. [Expression of snake venom thrombin-like enzyme calobin in Pichia pastoris].

    PubMed

    Yuan, Shengling; Wang, Peng; Tao, Haoxia; Zhan, Dewen; Wang, Yanchun; Wang, Lingchun; Liu, Chunjie; Zhang, Zhaoshan

    2009-04-01

    Thrombin-like enzymes (TLEs) are studied widely because of their therapeutic potential in myocardial infarction and thrombotic diseases. We synthesized the DNA fragment encoding thrombin-like enzyme calobin from Agkistrodon caliginosus (Korean Viper) venom by fusion PCR and expressed it in Pichia pastoris. After induction by 0.5% methanol for 48 h, the expression level of recombinant calobin reached 3.5 g/L in medium. The recombinant calobin was purified by Q-Sepharose Fast Flow ion-exchange chromatography and Sephacryl-S-100 gel filtration chromatography. Purified sample had a molecular weight of 32 kD shown in SDS-PAGE. It hydrolyzed fibrinogen and formed a light white hydrolysis circle in fibrinogen plate. SDS-PAGE analysis showed that recombinant calobin cleaved Aalpha-chain of fibrinogen specifically, and produced an appropriately 40 kD new band. However, we failed to find its fibrin-clot formation activity. PMID:19637626

  9. Snake (Walterinnesia aegyptia) venom-loaded silica nanoparticles induce apoptosis and growth arrest in human prostate cancer cells.

    PubMed

    Badr, Gamal; Al-Sadoon, Mohamed K; Rabah, Danny M; Sayed, Douaa

    2013-03-01

    Prostate cancer (PCa) is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in men. The progression and invasion of PCa are normally mediated by the overexpression of chemokine receptors (CKRs) and the interaction between CKRs and their cognate ligands. We recently demonstrated that venom extracted from Walterinnesia aegyptia (WEV) either alone or in combination with silica nanoparticles (WEV+NP) mediated the growth arrest and apoptosis of breast cancer cells. In the present study, we evaluated the impact of WEV alone and WEV+NP on the migration, invasion, proliferation and apoptosis of prostate cancer cells. We found that WEV alone and WEV+NP decreased the viability of all cell types tested (PCa cells isolated from patient samples, PC3 cells and LNCaP cells) using an MTT assay. The IC(50) values were determined to be 10 and 5 μg/mL for WEV alone and WEV+NP, respectively. WEV+NP decreased the surface expression of the CKRs CXCR3, CXCR4, CXCR5 and CXCR6 to a greater extent than WEV alone and subsequently reduced migration and the invasion response of the cells to the cognate ligands of the CKRs (CXCL10, CXCL12, CXCL13 and CXCL16, respectively). Using a CFSE proliferation assay, we found that WEV+NP strongly inhibited epidermal growth factor-mediated PCa cell proliferation. Furthermore, analysis of the cell cycle indicated that WEV+NP strongly altered the cell cycle of PCa cells and enhanced the induction of apoptosis. Finally, we demonstrated that WEV+NP robustly decreased the expression of anti-apoptotic effectors, such as B cell Lymphoma-2 (Bcl-2), B cell Lymphoma-extra large (Bcl-(XL)) and myeloid cell leukemia sequence-1 (Mcl-1), and increased the expression of pro-apoptotic effectors, such as Bcl-2 homologous antagonist/killer (Bak), Bcl-2-associated X protein (Bax) and Bcl-2-interacting mediator of cell death (Bim). WEV+NP also altered the membrane potential of mitochondria in the PCa cells. Our data reveal the potential of nanoparticle-sustained delivery of snake venom as

  10. A Distinct Functional Site in Ω-Neurotoxins: Novel Antagonists of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors from Snake Venom.

    PubMed

    Hassan-Puttaswamy, Varuna; Adams, David J; Kini, R Manjunatha

    2015-12-18

    Snake venom α-neurotoxins from the three-finger toxin (3FTx) family are competitive antagonists with nanomolar affinity and high selectivity for nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR). Here, we report the characterization of a new group of competitive nAChR antagonists: Ω-neurotoxins. Although they belong to the 3FTx family, the characteristic functional residues of α-neurotoxins are not conserved. We evaluated the subtype specificity and structure-function relationships of Oh9-1, an Ω-neurotoxin from Ophiophagus hannah venom. Recombinant Oh9-1 showed reversible postsynaptic neurotoxicity in the micromolar range. Experiments with different nAChR subtypes expressed in Xenopus oocytes indicated Oh9-1 is selective for rat muscle type α1β1εδ (adult) and α1β1γδ (fetal) and rat neuronal α3β2 subtypes. However, Oh9-1 showed low or no affinity for other human and rat neuronal subtypes. Twelve individual alanine-scan mutants encompassing all three loops of Oh9-1 were evaluated for binding to α1β1εδ and α3β2 subtypes. Oh9-1's loop-II residues (M25, F27) were the most critical for interactions and formed the common binding core. Mutations at T23 and F26 caused a significant loss in activity at α1β1εδ receptors but had no effect on the interaction with the α3β2 subtype. Similarly, mutations at loop-II (H7, K22, H30) and -III (K45) of Oh9-1 had a distinctly different impact on its activity with these subtypes. Thus, Oh9-1 interacts with these nAChRs via distinct residues. Unlike α-neurotoxins, the tip of loop-II is not involved. We reveal a novel mode of interaction, where both sides of the β-strand of Oh9-1's loop-II interact with α1β1εδ, but only one side interacts with α3β2. Phylogenetic analysis revealed functional organization of the Ω-neurotoxins independent of α-neurotoxins. Thus, Ω-neurotoxin: Oh9-1 may be a new, structurally distinct class of 3FTxs that, like α-neurotoxins, antagonize nAChRs. However, Oh9-1 binds to the ACh

  11. [The in vitro production of three-finger neurotoxins from snake venoms with a high abundance of disulfide bonds. Problems and their solutions].

    PubMed

    Liukmanova, E N; Shulepko, M A; Shenkarev, Z O; Dolgikh, D A; Kirpichnikov, M P

    2010-01-01

    alpha-Neurotoxins from snake venom are highly efficient inhibitors of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR). These small proteins that have a beta-structural organization attract much interest as a tool for studies of nACh R and as prototypes for the development of new Pharmaceuticals for the treatment of diseases of the nervous system. However, the in vitro production of "three-finger" neurotoxins is complicated by the presence of four or five disulfide bonds that are closely located in their molecules. The present review contains a description of the most frequently used modern approaches for the E. coli expression of recombinant proteins (direct expression, expression as fusions, and secretion) with an emphasis placed on the recombinant production of snake alpha-neurotoxins. The methods of E. coli expression of isotopically labeled neurotoxins are described. The proposed solutions will be of broad interest for the bacterial production of other disulfide-abundant proteins.

  12. Activation of J77A.1 Macrophages by Three Phospholipases A2 Isolated from Bothrops atrox Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Furtado, Juliana L.; Oliveira, George A.; Pontes, Adriana S.; Setúbal, Sulamita da S.; Xavier, Caroline V.; Lacouth-Silva, Fabianne; Lima, Beatriz F.; Zaqueo, Kayena D.; Kayano, Anderson M.; Calderon, Leonardo A.; Stábeli, Rodrigo G.; Soares, Andreimar M.; Zuliani, Juliana P.

    2014-01-01

    In the present study, we investigated the in vitro effects of two basic myotoxic phospholipases A2 (PLA2), BaTX-I, a catalytically inactive Lys-49 variant, and BaTX-II, a catalytically active Asp-49, and of one acidic myotoxic PLA2, BaPLA2, a catalytically active Asp-49, isolated from Bothrops atrox snake venom, on the activation of J774A.1 macrophages. At noncytotoxic concentrations, the toxins did not affect the adhesion of the macrophages, nor their ability to detach. The data obtained showed that only BaTX-I stimulated complement receptor-mediated phagocytosis. However, BaTX-I, BaTX-II, and BaPLA2 induced the release of the superoxide anion by J774A.1 macrophages. Additionally, only BaTX-I raised the lysosomal volume of macrophages after 15 min of incubation. After 30 min, all the phospholipases increased this parameter, which was not observed within 60 min. Moreover, BaTX-I, BaTX-II, and BaPLA2 increased the number of lipid bodies on macrophages submitted to phagocytosis and not submitted to phagocytosis. However, BaTX-II and BaPLA2 induced the release of TNF-α by J774A.1 macrophages. Taken together, the data show that, despite differences in enzymatic activity, the three toxins induced inflammatory events and whether the enzyme is acidic or basic does not seem to contribute to these effects. PMID:24592395

  13. Activation of J77A.1 macrophages by three phospholipases A2 isolated from Bothrops atrox snake venom.

    PubMed

    Furtado, Juliana L; Oliveira, George A; Pontes, Adriana S; Setúbal, Sulamita da S; Xavier, Caroline V; Lacouth-Silva, Fabianne; Lima, Beatriz F; Zaqueo, Kayena D; Kayano, Anderson M; Calderon, Leonardo A; Stábeli, Rodrigo G; Soares, Andreimar M; Zuliani, Juliana P

    2014-01-01

    In the present study, we investigated the in vitro effects of two basic myotoxic phospholipases A2 (PLA2), BaTX-I, a catalytically inactive Lys-49 variant, and BaTX-II, a catalytically active Asp-49, and of one acidic myotoxic PLA2, BaPLA2, a catalytically active Asp-49, isolated from Bothrops atrox snake venom, on the activation of J774A.1 macrophages. At noncytotoxic concentrations, the toxins did not affect the adhesion of the macrophages, nor their ability to detach. The data obtained showed that only BaTX-I stimulated complement receptor-mediated phagocytosis. However, BaTX-I, BaTX-II, and BaPLA2 induced the release of the superoxide anion by J774A.1 macrophages. Additionally, only BaTX-I raised the lysosomal volume of macrophages after 15 min of incubation. After 30 min, all the phospholipases increased this parameter, which was not observed within 60 min. Moreover, BaTX-I, BaTX-II, and BaPLA2 increased the number of lipid bodies on macrophages submitted to phagocytosis and not submitted to phagocytosis. However, BaTX-II and BaPLA2 induced the release of TNF-α by J774A.1 macrophages. Taken together, the data show that, despite differences in enzymatic activity, the three toxins induced inflammatory events and whether the enzyme is acidic or basic does not seem to contribute to these effects. PMID:24592395

  14. Cell cycle arrest evidence, parasiticidal and bactericidal properties induced by L-amino acid oxidase from Bothrops atrox snake venom.

    PubMed

    de Melo Alves Paiva, Raquel; de Freitas Figueiredo, Raquel; Antonucci, Gilmara Ausech; Paiva, Helder Henrique; de Lourdes Pires Bianchi, Maria; Rodrigues, Kelly C; Lucarini, Rodrigo; Caetano, Renato Cesar; Linhari Rodrigues Pietro, Rosemeire Cristina; Gomes Martins, Carlos Henrique; de Albuquerque, Sérgio; Sampaio, Suely Vilela

    2011-05-01

    The present article describes an l-amino acid oxidase from Bothrops atrox snake venom as with antiprotozoal activities in Trypanosoma cruzi and in different species of Leishmania (Leishmania braziliensis, Leishmania donovani and Leishmania major). Leishmanicidal effects were inhibited by catalase, suggesting that they are mediated by H(2)O(2) production. Leishmania spp. cause a spectrum of diseases, ranging from self-healing ulcers to disseminated and often fatal infections, depending on the species involved and the host's immune response. BatroxLAAO also displays bactericidal activity against both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. The apoptosis induced by BatroxLAAO on HL-60 cell lines and PBMC cells was determined by morphological cell evaluation using a mix of fluorescent dyes. As revealed by flow cytometry analysis, suppression of cell proliferation with BatroxLAAO was accompanied by the significant accumulation of cells in the G0/G1 phase boundary in HL-60 cells. BatroxLAAO at 25 μg/mL and 50 μg/mL blocked G0-G1 transition, resulting in G0/G1 phase cell cycle arrest, thereby delaying the progression of cells through S and G2/M phase in HL-60 cells. This was shown by an accentuated decrease in the proportion of cells in S phase, and the almost absence of G2/M phase cell population. BatroxLAAO is an interesting enzyme that provides a better understanding of the ophidian envenomation mechanism, and has biotechnological potential as a model for therapeutic agents. PMID:21300133

  15. A novel snake venom-derived GPIb antagonist, anfibatide, protects mice from acute experimental ischaemic stroke and reperfusion injury

    PubMed Central

    Li, Ting-Ting; Fan, Man-Li; Hou, Shi-Xiang; Li, Xiao-Yi; Barry, Devin M; Jin, Hui; Luo, Sheng-Yong; Kong, Feng; Lau, Lit-Fui; Dai, Xiang-Rong; Zhang, Guo-Hui; Zhou, Lan-Lan

    2015-01-01

    Background and Purpose Ischaemic stroke is a serious disease with limited therapy options. Glycoprotein (GP)Ib binding to von Willebrand factor (vWF) exposed at vascular injury initiates platelet adhesion and contributes to platelet aggregation. GPIb has been suggested as an effective target for antithrombotic therapy in stroke. Anfibatide is a GPIb antagonist derived from snake venom and we investigated its protective effect on experimental brain ischaemia in mice. Experimental Approach Focal cerebral ischaemia was induced by 90 min of transient middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO). These mice were then treated with anfibatide (4, 2, 1 μg·kg−1), injected i.v., after 90 min of MCAO, followed by 1 h of reperfusion. Tirofiban, a GPIIb/IIIα antagonist, was used as a positive control. Key Results Twenty-four hours after MCAO, anfibatide-treated mice showed significantly improved ischaemic lesions in a dose-dependent manner. The mice had smaller infarct volumes, less severe neurological deficits and histopathology of cerebrum tissues compared with the untreated MCAO mice. Moreover, anfibatide decreased the amount of GPIbα, vWF and accumulation of fibrin(ogen) in the vasculature of the ischaemic hemisphere. Tirofiban had similar effects on infarct size and fibrin(ogen) deposition compared with the MCAO group. Importantly, the anfibatide-treated mice showed a lower incidence of intracerebral haemorrhage and shorter tail bleeding time compared with the tirofiban-treated mice. Conclusions and Implications Our data indicate anfibatide is a safe GPIb antagonist that exerts a protective effect on cerebral ischaemia and reperfusion injury. Anfibatide is a promising candidate that could be beneficial for the treatment of ischaemic stroke. PMID:25917571

  16. In vivo and in vitro antileishmanial activity of Bungarus caeruleus snake venom through alteration of immunomodulatory activity.

    PubMed

    Bhattacharya, Shamik; Ghosh, Prasanta; De, Tripti; Gomes, Antony; Gomes, Aparna; Dungdung, Sandhya Rekha

    2013-09-01

    Leishmaniasis threatens more than 350 million people worldwide specially in tropical and subtropical region. Antileishmanial drugs that are currently available have various limitations. The search of new drugs from natural products (plants, animals) possessing antileishmanial activity is ventured throughout the world. The present study deals with the antileishmanial activity of Bungarus caeruleus snake venom (BCV) on in vitro promastigotes and amastigotes of Leishmania donovani parasite and leishmania infected BALB/c mice. The effect of BCV on peritoneal macrophage, release of cytokines from the activated macrophages, production of nitric oxide, reactive oxygen species and cytokines were studied in vivo and in vitro. IC50 value of BCV on L. donovani promastigote was 14.5 μg/ml and intracellular amastigote was 11.2 μg/ml. It activated peritoneal macrophages, significantly increased cytokines and interleukin production. BCV (20 μg/kg and 40 μg/kg body weight of mice) decreased parasite count by 54.9% and 74.2% in spleen and 41.4% and 60.4% in liver of infected BALB/c mice. BCV treatment significantly increased production of TNF-α, IFN-γ, ROS, NO in infected mice. Histological studies showed decreased granuloma formation in treated liver as compared with control. Liver and spleen structure was partially restored due to BCV treatment in infected mice. The present study revealed that BCV possessed antileishmanial activity against L. donovani parasite in vivo and in vitro and this activity was partly mediated through immunomodulatory activity involving macrophages. PMID:23830987

  17. Interactions of pharmacologically active snake venom sPLA2 with different cell lines

    PubMed Central

    Doumanov, Jordan; Mladenova, Kirilka; Aleksandrov, Radoslav; Danovski, Georgi; Petrova, Svetla

    2014-01-01

    Secreted Phospholipases A2 (sPLA2s) represent a large family of structurally related enzymes, which target different tissues and organs and induce numerous pharmacological effects based on their catalytic specificity – hydrolysis of the sn-2 ester bond of glycerophospholipids. The neurotoxin vipoxin, isolated from the venom of Vipera ammodytes meriodionalis, is a heterodimeric postsynaptic ionic complex composed of two protein subunits – a basic and toxic His48 sPLA2 enzyme and an acidic, enzymatically inactive and non-toxic component. In this paper, for the first time, we demonstrate that vipoxin sPLA2 enzyme affects cell integrity and viability of four cell types and causes different cell responses. The most dramatic local tissue effects were observed with RPE-1 (retinal pigment epithelial) cells followed by A549 (adenocarcinomic human alveolar epithelial) cells and MDCK (Madin-Darby Canine Kidney epithelial) cells. Products of the enzymatic reaction, lysophospholipids and unsaturated free fatty acids, act as lipid mediators that can induce membrane damaging or can stimulate cell proliferation. Our preliminary results on the cytotoxic effect of vipoxin sPLA2 on A549 cells are promising in searching of its eventual anticancer potential. PMID:26019578

  18. Snake population venomics and antivenomics of Bothrops atrox: Paedomorphism along its transamazonian dispersal and implications of geographic venom variability on snakebite management.

    PubMed

    Calvete, Juan J; Sanz, Libia; Pérez, Alicia; Borges, Adolfo; Vargas, Alba M; Lomonte, Bruno; Angulo, Yamileth; Gutiérrez, José María; Chalkidis, Hipócrates M; Mourão, Rosa H V; Furtado, M Fatima D; Moura-Da-Silva, Ana M

    2011-04-01

    We describe two geographically differentiated venom phenotypes across the wide distribution range of Bothrops atrox, from the Colombian Magdalena Medio Valley through Puerto Ayacucho and El Paují, in the Venezuelan States of Amazonas and Orinoquia, respectively, and São Bento in the Brazilian State of Maranhão. Colombian and Venezuelan venoms show an ontogenetic toxin profile phenotype whereas Brazilian venoms exhibit paedomorphic phenotypes. Venoms from each of the 16 localities sampled contain both population-specific toxins and proteins shared by neighboring B. atrox populations. Mapping the molecular similarity between conspecific populations onto a physical map of B. atrox range provides clues for tracing dispersal routes that account for the current biogeographic distribution of the species. The proteomic pattern is consistent with a model of southeast and southwest dispersal and allopatric fragmentation northern of the Amazon Basin, and trans-Amazonian expansion through the Andean Corridor and across the Amazon river between Monte Alegre and Santarém. An antivenomic approach applied to assess the efficacy towards B. atrox venoms of two antivenoms raised in Costa Rica and Brazil using Bothrops venoms different than B. atrox in the immunization mixtures showed that both antivenoms immunodepleted very efficiently the major toxins (PIII-SVMPs, serine proteinases, CRISP, LAO) of paedomorphic venoms from Puerto Ayacucho (Venezuelan Amazonia) through São Bento, but had impaired reactivity towards PLA(2) and P-I SVMP molecules abundantly present in ontogenetic venoms. The degree of immunodepletion achieved suggests that each of these antivenoms may be effective against envenomations by paedomorphic, and some ontogenetic, B. atrox venoms.

  19. Snake population venomics and antivenomics of Bothrops atrox: Paedomorphism along its transamazonian dispersal and implications of geographic venom variability on snakebite management.

    PubMed

    Calvete, Juan J; Sanz, Libia; Pérez, Alicia; Borges, Adolfo; Vargas, Alba M; Lomonte, Bruno; Angulo, Yamileth; Gutiérrez, José María; Chalkidis, Hipócrates M; Mourão, Rosa H V; Furtado, M Fatima D; Moura-Da-Silva, Ana M

    2011-04-01

    We describe two geographically differentiated venom phenotypes across the wide distribution range of Bothrops atrox, from the Colombian Magdalena Medio Valley through Puerto Ayacucho and El Paují, in the Venezuelan States of Amazonas and Orinoquia, respectively, and São Bento in the Brazilian State of Maranhão. Colombian and Venezuelan venoms show an ontogenetic toxin profile phenotype whereas Brazilian venoms exhibit paedomorphic phenotypes. Venoms from each of the 16 localities sampled contain both population-specific toxins and proteins shared by neighboring B. atrox populations. Mapping the molecular similarity between conspecific populations onto a physical map of B. atrox range provides clues for tracing dispersal routes that account for the current biogeographic distribution of the species. The proteomic pattern is consistent with a model of southeast and southwest dispersal and allopatric fragmentation northern of the Amazon Basin, and trans-Amazonian expansion through the Andean Corridor and across the Amazon river between Monte Alegre and Santarém. An antivenomic approach applied to assess the efficacy towards B. atrox venoms of two antivenoms raised in Costa Rica and Brazil using Bothrops venoms different than B. atrox in the immunization mixtures showed that both antivenoms immunodepleted very efficiently the major toxins (PIII-SVMPs, serine proteinases, CRISP, LAO) of paedomorphic venoms from Puerto Ayacucho (Venezuelan Amazonia) through São Bento, but had impaired reactivity towards PLA(2) and P-I SVMP molecules abundantly present in ontogenetic venoms. The degree of immunodepletion achieved suggests that each of these antivenoms may be effective against envenomations by paedomorphic, and some ontogenetic, B. atrox venoms. PMID:21278006

  20. Neurotoxicity of Micrurus altirostris (Uruguayan coral snake) venom and its neutralization by commercial coral snake antivenom and specific antiserum raised in rabbits.

    PubMed

    de Abreu, Valdemir Aparecido; Leite, Gildo Bernardo; Oliveira, Caroline Borja; Hyslop, Stephen; Furtado, Maria de Fatima Domingos; Simioni, Lea Rodrigues

    2008-07-01

    In this work, we studied the neuromuscular blockade caused by Micrurus altirostris venom (0.1-10 microg/mL) in indirect stimulated chick biventer cervicis and mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm preparations and the ability of commercial antivenom (Instituto Butantan) and antiserum raised in rabbits to neutralize neurotoxicity and lethality in chicks and mice (LD(50) 0.042 and 0.255 mg/kg), injected i.m. and i.p., respectively, with venom (5 LD(50)):antivenom or antiserum mixtures (n = 6) of 1:1-1:2.5-1:5-1:10-1:20. The venom caused a complete and irreversible neuromuscular blockade in both preparations, inhibited the acetylcholine and carbachol contractures, without interfering on KCl response. The neuromuscular blockade was not Ca(2+) or temperature-dependent and did not affect the response to direct stimulation. Only a venom:antivenom or antiserum ratio of 1:20 neutralized the neuromuscular blockade in vitro and protected chicks and mice against 5 LD(50) of venom. Our results indicated that Micrurus altirostris venom interferes with postsynaptic neurotransmission and that commercial antivenom and rabbit antiserum have low efficacy in neutralizing the neurotoxicity and lethality of this venom.

  1. A Comprehensive View of the Structural and Functional Alterations of Extracellular Matrix by Snake Venom Metalloproteinases (SVMPs): Novel Perspectives on the Pathophysiology of Envenoming

    PubMed Central

    Gutiérrez, José María; Escalante, Teresa; Rucavado, Alexandra; Herrera, Cristina; Fox, Jay W.

    2016-01-01

    Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) affect the extracellular matrix (ECM) in multiple and complex ways. Previously, the combination of various methodological platforms, including electron microscopy, histochemistry, immunohistochemistry, and Western blot, has allowed a partial understanding of such complex pathology. In recent years, the proteomics analysis of exudates collected in the vicinity of tissues affected by SVMPs has provided novel and exciting information on SVMP-induced ECM alterations. The presence of fragments of an array of ECM proteins, including those of the basement membrane, has revealed a complex pathological scenario caused by the direct action of SVMPs. In addition, the time-course analysis of these changes has underscored that degradation of some fibrillar collagens is likely to depend on the action of endogenous proteinases, such as matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), synthesized as a consequence of the inflammatory process. The action of SVMPs on the ECM also results in the release of ECM-derived biologically-active peptides that exert diverse actions in the tissue, some of which might be associated with reparative events or with further tissue damage. The study of the effects of SVMP on the ECM is an open field of research which may bring a renewed understanding of snake venom-induced pathology. PMID:27782073

  2. Isolation, characterization, cloning and expression of an alpha-neurotoxin from the venom of the Mexican coral snake Micrurus laticollaris (Squamata: Elapidae).

    PubMed

    Carbajal-Saucedo, Alejandro; López-Vera, Estuardo; Bénard-Valle, Melisa; Smith, Eric N; Zamudio, Fernando; de Roodt, Adolfo R; Olvera-Rodríguez, Alejandro

    2013-05-01

    A new member of short chain α-neurotoxic protein family from venom of the Mexican coral snake, Micrurus laticollaris, was characterized. This protein, named MlatA1, possesses 61 amino acids with 8 conserved cysteine residues, sharing 30-91% sequence identity with other fully sequenced Micrurus toxins. MlatA1 (LD50i.v. = 0.064 mg/kg) antagonizes with both fetal and adult nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) as well as α-7 neuronal nAChR in a dose-dependent way. Specific rabbit anti-Mlat serum (titer higher than 18,000) does not show any protective ability against this toxin, nevertheless it was able to recognize protein bands in six out of twelve Micrurus venoms showing the existence of two distinct antigenic groups for α-neurotoxins in North American coral snakes species. The MlatA1 gene was cloned and used to produce recombinant toxin (rMlatA1) that was recognized by rabbit anti-native toxin but was depleted of toxic activity.

  3. Structural and functional properties of Bp-LAAO, a new L-amino acid oxidase isolated from Bothrops pauloensis snake venom.

    PubMed

    Rodrigues, Renata S; da Silva, Juliana F; Boldrini França, Johara; Fonseca, Fernando P P; Otaviano, Antônio R; Henrique Silva, Flávio; Hamaguchi, Amélia; Magro, Angelo J; Braz, Antônio Sérgio K; dos Santos, Juliana I; Homsi-Brandeburgo, Maria Inês; Fontes, Marcos R M; Fuly, André L; Soares, Andreimar M; Rodrigues, Veridiana M

    2009-04-01

    An L-amino acid oxidase (Bp-LAAO) from Bothrops pauloensis snake venom was highly purified using sequential chromatography steps on CM-Sepharose, Phenyl-Sepharose CL-4B, Benzamidine Sepharose and C18 reverse-phase HPLC. Purified Bp-LAAO showed to be a homodimeric acidic glycoprotein with molecular weight around 65kDa under reducing conditions in SDS-PAGE. The best substrates for Bp-LAAO were L-Met, L-Leu, L-Phe and L-Ile and the enzyme showed a strong reduction of its catalytic activity upon L-Met and L-Phe substrates at extreme temperatures. Bp-LAAO showed leishmanicidal, antitumoral and bactericidal activities dose dependently. Bp-LAAO induced platelet aggregation in platelet-rich plasma and this activity was inhibited by catalase. Bp-LAAO-cDNA of 1548bp codified a mature protein with 516 amino acid residues corresponding to a theoretical isoelectric point and molecular weight of 6.3 and 58kDa, respectively. Additionally, structural and phylogenetic studies identified residues under positive selection and their probable location in Bp-LAAO and other snake venom LAAOs (svLAAOs). Structural and functional investigations of these enzymes can contribute to the advancement of toxinology and to the elaboration of novel therapeutic agents. PMID:19135502

  4. Colubrid Venom Composition: An -Omics Perspective.

    PubMed

    Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio L M; Campos, Pollyanna F; Ching, Ana T C; Mackessy, Stephen P

    2016-01-01

    Snake venoms have been subjected to increasingly sensitive analyses for well over 100 years, but most research has been restricted to front-fanged snakes, which actually represent a relatively small proportion of extant species of advanced snakes. Because rear-fanged snakes are a diverse and distinct radiation of the advanced snakes, understanding venom composition among "colubrids" is critical to understanding the evolution of venom among snakes. Here we review the state of knowledge concerning rear-fanged snake venom composition, emphasizing those toxins for which protein or transcript sequences are available. We have also added new transcriptome-based data on venoms of three species of rear-fanged snakes. Based on this compilation, it is apparent that several components, including cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRiSPs), C-type lectins (CTLs), CTLs-like proteins and snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs), are broadly distributed among "colubrid" venoms, while others, notably three-finger toxins (3FTxs), appear nearly restricted to the Colubridae (sensu stricto). Some putative new toxins, such as snake venom matrix metalloproteinases, are in fact present in several colubrid venoms, while others are only transcribed, at lower levels. This work provides insights into the evolution of these toxin classes, but because only a small number of species have been explored, generalizations are still rather limited. It is likely that new venom protein families await discovery, particularly among those species with highly specialized diets. PMID:27455326

  5. Colubrid Venom Composition: An -Omics Perspective

    PubMed Central

    Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio L. M.; Campos, Pollyanna F.; Ching, Ana T. C.; Mackessy, Stephen P.

    2016-01-01

    Snake venoms have been subjected to increasingly sensitive analyses for well over 100 years, but most research has been restricted to front-fanged snakes, which actually represent a relatively small proportion of extant species of advanced snakes. Because rear-fanged snakes are a diverse and distinct radiation of the advanced snakes, understanding venom composition among “colubrids” is critical to understanding the evolution of venom among snakes. Here we review the state of knowledge concerning rear-fanged snake venom composition, emphasizing those toxins for which protein or transcript sequences are available. We have also added new transcriptome-based data on venoms of three species of rear-fanged snakes. Based on this compilation, it is apparent that several components, including cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRiSPs), C-type lectins (CTLs), CTLs-like proteins and snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs), are broadly distributed among “colubrid” venoms, while others, notably three-finger toxins (3FTxs), appear nearly restricted to the Colubridae (sensu stricto). Some putative new toxins, such as snake venom matrix metalloproteinases, are in fact present in several colubrid venoms, while others are only transcribed, at lower levels. This work provides insights into the evolution of these toxin classes, but because only a small number of species have been explored, generalizations are still rather limited. It is likely that new venom protein families await discovery, particularly among those species with highly specialized diets. PMID:27455326

  6. Argininosuccinate Synthetase Is a Functional Target for a Snake Venom Anti-hypertensive Peptide

    PubMed Central

    Guerreiro, Juliano R.; Lameu, Claudiana; Oliveira, Eduardo F.; Klitzke, Clécio F.; Melo, Robson L.; Linares, Edlaine; Augusto, Ohara; Fox, Jay W.; Lebrun, Ivo; Serrano, Solange M. T.; Camargo, Antonio C. M.

    2009-01-01

    Bj-BPP-10c is a bioactive proline-rich decapeptide, part of the C-type natriuretic peptide precursor, expressed in the brain and in the venom gland of Bothrops jararaca. We recently showed that Bj-BPP-10c displays a strong, sustained anti-hypertensive effect in spontaneous hypertensive rats (SHR), without causing any effect in normotensive rats, by a pharmacological effect independent of angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibition. Therefore, we hypothesized that another mechanism should be involved in the peptide activity. Here we used affinity chromatography to search for kidney cytosolic proteins with affinity for Bj-BPP-10c and demonstrate that argininosuccinate synthetase (AsS) is the major protein binding to the peptide. More importantly, this interaction activates the catalytic activity of AsS in a dose-de pend ent manner. AsS is recognized as an important player of the citrulline-NO cycle that represents a potential limiting step in NO synthesis. Accordingly, the functional interaction of Bj-BPP-10c and AsS was evidenced by the following effects promoted by the peptide: (i) increase of NO metabolite production in human umbilical vein endothelial cell culture and of arginine in human embryonic kidney cells and (ii) increase of arginine plasma concentration in SHR. Moreover, α-methyl-dl-aspartic acid, a specific AsS inhibitor, significantly reduced the anti-hypertensive activity of Bj-BPP-10c in SHR. Taken together, these results suggest that AsS plays a role in the anti-hypertensive action of Bj-BPP-10c. Therefore, we propose the activation of AsS as a new mechanism for the anti-hypertensive effect of Bj-BPP-10c in SHR and AsS as a novel target for the therapy of hypertension-related diseases. PMID:19491403

  7. Enhanced anticancer efficacy of snake venom combined with silica nanoparticles in a murine model of human multiple myeloma: molecular targets for cell cycle arrest and apoptosis induction.

    PubMed

    Al-Sadoon, Mohamed K; Rabah, Danny M; Badr, Gamal

    2013-01-01

    Multiple myeloma (MM) is a clonal disease of plasma cells that reside in the bone marrow (BM). MM is an incurable disease; thus, screening for novel anti-myeloma drugs remains critically important. We recently described a silica nanoparticle-based snake venom delivery model that targets cancer cells, but not normal cells. Using this model, we demonstrated a strong enhancement of the antitumor activity of snake venom extracted from Walterinnesia aegyptia (WEV) in two breast carcinoma cell lines when the venom was combined with silica nanoparticles (WEV+NP). In the present study, we aimed to delineate the in vivo therapeutic efficacy of WEV+NP in an MM-bearing experimental nude mouse model. We found that treatment with WEV+NP or WEV alone significantly inhibited tumor growth compared to treatment with NP or vehicle. WEV+NP- and WEV-treated cancer cells exhibited marked elevations in oxidative stress and robust reductions in the levels of interleukin-6 (IL-6) and B cell-activating factor (BAFF). WEV+NP also decreased the surface expression of the chemokine receptors CXCR3, CXCR4 and CXCR6 to a greater extent than WEV alone, and WEV+NP subsequently reduced migration in response to the cognate ligands CXCL10, CXCL12 and CXCL16. Furthermore, we found that WEV+NP strongly inhibited insulin-like growth factor 1 (EGF-1)- and IL-6-mediated MM cell proliferation, altered the cell cycle and enhanced the induction of apoptosis of MM cells. In addition, the results of treatment with WEV+NP or WEV alone revealed that the combination of WEV with NP robustly decreased the expression of cyclin D1, Bcl-2 and the phosphorylation of AKT; increased the expression of cyclin B1; altered the mitochondrial membrane potential; increased the activity of caspase-3, -8 and -9; and sensitized MM cells to growth arrest and apoptosis. Our data reveal the therapeutic potential of the nanoparticle-sustained delivery of snake venom to fight cancer cells. PMID:23973876

  8. Enhanced anticancer efficacy of snake venom combined with silica nanoparticles in a murine model of human multiple myeloma: molecular targets for cell cycle arrest and apoptosis induction.

    PubMed

    Al-Sadoon, Mohamed K; Rabah, Danny M; Badr, Gamal

    2013-01-01

    Multiple myeloma (MM) is a clonal disease of plasma cells that reside in the bone marrow (BM). MM is an incurable disease; thus, screening for novel anti-myeloma drugs remains critically important. We recently described a silica nanoparticle-based snake venom delivery model that targets cancer cells, but not normal cells. Using this model, we demonstrated a strong enhancement of the antitumor activity of snake venom extracted from Walterinnesia aegyptia (WEV) in two breast carcinoma cell lines when the venom was combined with silica nanoparticles (WEV+NP). In the present study, we aimed to delineate the in vivo therapeutic efficacy of WEV+NP in an MM-bearing experimental nude mouse model. We found that treatment with WEV+NP or WEV alone significantly inhibited tumor growth compared to treatment with NP or vehicle. WEV+NP- and WEV-treated cancer cells exhibited marked elevations in oxidative stress and robust reductions in the levels of interleukin-6 (IL-6) and B cell-activating factor (BAFF). WEV+NP also decreased the surface expression of the chemokine receptors CXCR3, CXCR4 and CXCR6 to a greater extent than WEV alone, and WEV+NP subsequently reduced migration in response to the cognate ligands CXCL10, CXCL12 and CXCL16. Furthermore, we found that WEV+NP strongly inhibited insulin-like growth factor 1 (EGF-1)- and IL-6-mediated MM cell proliferation, altered the cell cycle and enhanced the induction of apoptosis of MM cells. In addition, the results of treatment with WEV+NP or WEV alone revealed that the combination of WEV with NP robustly decreased the expression of cyclin D1, Bcl-2 and the phosphorylation of AKT; increased the expression of cyclin B1; altered the mitochondrial membrane potential; increased the activity of caspase-3, -8 and -9; and sensitized MM cells to growth arrest and apoptosis. Our data reveal the therapeutic potential of the nanoparticle-sustained delivery of snake venom to fight cancer cells.

  9. Primary structure and characterization of a non hemorrhagic metalloproteinase with fibrinolytic activity, from the snake venom of Protobothrops tokarensis (Tokara-habu).

    PubMed

    Oyama, Etsuko; Kitagawa, Yasuyuki; Takahashi, Hidenobu

    2013-08-01

    A low molecular weight metalloproteinase, named PT-H₂ protease, with fibrinolytic activity, was purified from the venom of Protobothrops tokarensis (Tokara-habu) by gel-filtration using Sephadex G-100, and ion-exchange chromatographies using CM-Sepharose Fast Flow and Mono S HR 5/5. By this procedure, about 85 mg of purified protein were obtained from 1.0 g of P. tokarensis venom. The purified protein showed a single protein band with a molecular weight of about 22.5 kDa on sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) under reducing conditions. The pI of purified protein showed a single band of 6.8. This proteinase showed a strong fibrinolytic activity. Further, this proteinase showed fibrinogenase activity and proteolytic activity against synthetic substrates for matrix metalloproteinase, ADAM-17, and TACE (tumor necrosis factor converting enzyme). These proteolytic activities were inhibited by metalloproteinase inhibitors such as EDTA. PT-H₂ protease consisted of 201 amino acid residues and had a calculated molecular weight of 22,994.7 Da. This protein showed conservation of the Zn²⁺-binding HEXXHXXGXXHD sequence. PT-H₂ protease showed high homology from 51.7 to 99.5% with amino acid sequences of other snake venom metalloproteinases.

  10. Determination of Toxic Activities in Bothrops spp. Snake Venoms Using Animal-Free Approaches: Correlation Between In Vitro Versus In Vivo Assays.

    PubMed

    de Souza, Letícia Lopes; Stransky, Stephanie; Guerra-Duarte, Clara; Flor-Sá, Ana; Schneider, Francisco Santos; Kalapothakis, Evanguedes; Chávez-Olórtegui, Carlos

    2015-10-01

    The main purpose of this study is to investigate the in vitro toxic effects of 5 Bothrops spp. snake venoms, which are part of the antigenic mixture used for the production of Brazilian antivenom, and evaluate their correlation with the in vivo toxic activities of Bothrops spp. venoms. The correlation analysis could be helpful for the replacement of living animals experimentation for in vitro bioassay. Cytotoxicity, L-amino acid oxidase (LAAO), proteolitic (serine and metalloproteinase), hyaluronidase (Hyal), and phospholipase A2 (PLA2) activities were estimated and the correlation coefficient was determined for each activity in relation to lethality, edema, hemorrhage and necrosis induced in live animals by B. jararaca, B. alternatus, B. jararacussu, B. neuwiedi, and B. moojeni venoms. The lethal activity in mice was highly related to Hyal activity (r = 0.94, p < .05), edema related to PLA2 activity (r = 0.94, p < .05), whereas the necrotizing activity showed high correlation with LAAO activity (r = 0.83, p < .05). A very significant correlation between in vitro cytotoxicity and LAAO activities was also observed (r = 0.97, p < .05).

  11. Determination of Toxic Activities in Bothrops spp. Snake Venoms Using Animal-Free Approaches: Correlation Between In Vitro Versus In Vivo Assays.

    PubMed

    de Souza, Letícia Lopes; Stransky, Stephanie; Guerra-Duarte, Clara; Flor-Sá, Ana; Schneider, Francisco Santos; Kalapothakis, Evanguedes; Chávez-Olórtegui, Carlos

    2015-10-01

    The main purpose of this study is to investigate the in vitro toxic effects of 5 Bothrops spp. snake venoms, which are part of the antigenic mixture used for the production of Brazilian antivenom, and evaluate their correlation with the in vivo toxic activities of Bothrops spp. venoms. The correlation analysis could be helpful for the replacement of living animals experimentation for in vitro bioassay. Cytotoxicity, L-amino acid oxidase (LAAO), proteolitic (serine and metalloproteinase), hyaluronidase (Hyal), and phospholipase A2 (PLA2) activities were estimated and the correlation coefficient was determined for each activity in relation to lethality, edema, hemorrhage and necrosis induced in live animals by B. jararaca, B. alternatus, B. jararacussu, B. neuwiedi, and B. moojeni venoms. The lethal activity in mice was highly related to Hyal activity (r = 0.94, p < .05), edema related to PLA2 activity (r = 0.94, p < .05), whereas the necrotizing activity showed high correlation with LAAO activity (r = 0.83, p < .05). A very significant correlation between in vitro cytotoxicity and LAAO activities was also observed (r = 0.97, p < .05). PMID:26160116

  12. Crystal structure and activating effect on RyRs of AhV_TL-I, a glycosylated thrombin-like enzyme from Agkistrodon halys snake venom.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Fuxing; Shen, Bing; Zhu, Zhongliang; Zhang, Ping; Ji, Yonghua; Niu, Liwen; Li, Xu; Teng, Maikun

    2013-03-01

    A snake venom thrombin-like enzyme (SVTLE) from Agkistrodon halys pallas venom was isolated by means of a two-step chromatographic procedure. The purified enzyme, named AhV_TL-I, showed fibrinogenolytic activity against both the Aα and Bβ chains of bovine fibrinogen. Unlike the other SVTLEs, AhV_TL-I has poor esterolytic activity upon BAEE substrate. The N-terminal sequence of AhV_TL-I was determined to be IIGGDEXNINEHRFLVALYT, and the molecular mass was confirmed to 29389.533 Da by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. Its complete cDNA and derived amino acid sequence were obtained by RT-PCR. The crystal structure of AhV_TL-I was determined at a resolution of 1.75 Å. A disaccharide was clearly mapped in the structure, which involved in regulating the esterolytic activity of AhV_TL-I. The presence of the N-glycan deformed the 99-loop, and the resulting steric hindrances hindered the substrates to access the active site. Furthermore, with the carbohydrate moiety, AhV_TL-I could induce mouse thoracic aortic ring contraction with the EC(50) of 147 nmol/L. Besides, the vasoconstrictor effects of AhV_TL-I were also independent of the enzymatic activity. The results of [Ca(2+)](i) measurement showed that the vasoconstrictor effects of AhV_TL-I were attributed to Ca(2+) releasing from Ca(2+) store. Further studies showed that it was related to the activation of ryanodine receptors (RyRs). These offer new insights into the snake SVTLEs functions and provide a novel pathogenesis of A. halys pallas venom. PMID:23052203

  13. Biological characterization of the Amazon coral Micrurus spixii snake venom: Isolation of a new neurotoxic phospholipase A2.

    PubMed

    Terra, Angelo L C; Moreira-Dill, Leandro S; Simões-Silva, Rodrigo; Monteiro, José Roniele N; Cavalcante, Walter L G; Gallacci, Márcia; Barros, Neuza B; Nicolete, Roberto; Teles, Carolina B G; Medeiros, Patrícia S M; Zanchi, Fernando B; Zuliani, Juliana P; Calderon, Leonardo A; Stábeli, Rodrigo G; Soares, Andreimar M

    2015-09-01

    The Micrurus genus is the American representative of Elapidae family. Micrurus spixii is endemic of South America and northern states of Brazil. Elapidic venoms contain neurotoxins that promote curare-mimetic neuromuscular blockage. In this study, biochemical and functional characterizations of M. spixii crude venom were performed and a new neurotoxic phospholipase A2 called MsPLA2-I was isolated. M. spixii crude venom caused severe swelling in the legs of tested mice and significant release of creatine kinase (CK) showing its myotoxic activity. Leishmanicidal activity against Leishmania amazonensis (IC50 1.24 μg/mL) was also observed, along with antiplasmodial activity against Plasmodium falciparum, which are unprecedented for Micrurus venoms. MsPLA2-I with a Mr 12,809.4 Da was isolated from the crude venom of M. spixii. The N-terminal sequencing of a fragment of 60 amino acids showed 80% similarity with another PLA2 from Micrurus altirostris. This toxin and the crude venom showed phospholipase activity. In a mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm preparation, M. spixii venom and MsPLA2-I induced the blockage of both direct and indirect twitches. While the venom presented a pronounced myotoxic activity, MsPLA2-I expressed a summation of neurotoxic activity. The results of this study make M. spixii crude venom promising compounds in the exploration of molecules with microbicidal potential.

  14. Pharmacological and biochemical studies on the venom of a clinically important viper snake (Echis carinatus) of Pakistan.

    PubMed

    Savanur, Arifa; Ali, Syed Abid; Munir, Iqra; Abbasi, Atiya; Alam, Mehtab; Shaikh, Hilal Ahmed

    2014-03-01

    Echis carinatus (saw-scaled viper) has been the major culprit responsible for serious envenomation casualties throughout the subcontinent. The present study describes the electrophoretic and zymographic characterization of E. carinatus venom and its effect on mammalian smooth muscle. Crude venom showed the presence of disintegrin, PLA2, C-type lectin/lectin-like components, CRISP, Serine protease, l-amino acid oxidase and very high concentrations of SVMPs. E. carinatus venom (1, 10, 30, 50, 100 μg/ml) inhibited the active tension/force of muscle contraction in a time and concentration dependent manner. The observed effects abolished when the venom was heated at 100 °C for 5 min. However, a decrease in bath temperature from 37 °C to 26 °C or an increase in CaCl2 concentration to 5 mM did not prevent the inhibition of contractile activity. The contractile response elicited by exogenous application of 50 mM KCl and 1 μM acetylcholine (ACh) was also significantly inhibited by all venom concentrations. Prior administration of commercially available polyvalent anti-venom partially neutralized and prevented the effect of E. carinatus venom whereas addition of anti-venom at t50 failed to reverse the inhibitory effect. Studies on isolated intestinal muscle indicate involvement of myotoxic and apoptotic components in E. carinatus venom for irreversible damage to muscle tissue. PMID:24462660

  15. Characterization of a human coagulation factor Xa-binding site on Viperidae snake venom phospholipases A2 by affinity binding studies and molecular bioinformatics

    PubMed Central

    Faure, Grazyna; Gowda, Veerabasappa T; Maroun, Rachid C

    2007-01-01

    Background The snake venom group IIA secreted phospholipases A2 (SVPLA2), present in the Viperidae snake family exhibit a wide range of toxic and pharmacological effects. They exert their different functions by catalyzing the hydrolysis of phospholipids (PL) at the membrane/water interface and by highly specific direct binding to: (i) presynaptic membrane-bound or intracellular receptors; (ii) natural PLA2-inhibitors from snake serum; and (iii) coagulation factors present in human blood. Results Using surface plasmon resonance (SPR) protein-protein interaction measurements and an in vitro biological test of inhibition of prothrombinase activity, we identify a number of Viperidae venom SVPLA2s that inhibit blood coagulation through direct binding to human blood coagulation factor Xa (FXa) via a non-catalytic, PL-independent mechanism. We classify the SVPLA2s in four groups, depending on the strength of their binding. Molecular electrostatic potentials calculated at the surface of 3D homology-modeling models show a correlation with inhibition of prothrombinase activity. In addition, molecular docking simulations between SVPLA2 and FXa guided by the experimental data identify the potential FXa binding site on the SVPLA2s. This site is composed of the following regions: helices A and B, the Ca2+ loop, the helix C-β-wing loop, and the C-terminal fragment. Some of the SVPLA2 binding site residues belong also to the interfacial binding site (IBS). The interface in FXa involves both, the light and heavy chains. Conclusion We have experimentally identified several strong FXa-binding SVPLA2s that disrupt the function of the coagulation cascade by interacting with FXa by the non-catalytic PL-independent mechanism. By theoretical methods we mapped the interaction sites on both, the SVPLA2s and FXa. Our findings may lead to the design of novel, non-competitive FXa inhibitors. PMID:18062812

  16. The belonging of gpMuc, a glycoprotein from Mucuna pruriens seeds, to the Kunitz-type trypsin inhibitor family explains its direct anti-snake venom activity.

    PubMed

    Scirè, Andrea; Tanfani, Fabio; Bertoli, Enrico; Furlani, Emiliano; Nadozie, Hope-Onyekwere N; Cerutti, Helena; Cortelazzo, Alessio; Bini, Luca; Guerranti, Roberto

    2011-07-15

    In Nigeria, Mucuna pruriens seeds are locally prescribed as an oral prophylactic for snake bite and it is claimed that when two seeds are swallowed they protect the individual for a year against snake bites. In order to understand the Mucuna pruriens antisnake properties, the proteins from the acqueous extract of seeds were purified by three chromatographic steps: ConA affinity chromatography, tandem anionic-cationic exchange and gel filtration, obtaining a fraction conventionally called gpMucB. This purified fraction was analysed by SDS-PAGE obtaining 3 bands with apparent masses ranging from 20 to 24 kDa, and by MALDI-TOF which showed two main peaks of 21 and 23 kDa and another small peak of 19 kDa. On the other hand, gel filtration analysis of the native protein indicated a molecular mass of about 70 kDa suggesting that in its native form, gpMucB is most likely an oligomeric multiform protein. Infrared spectroscopy of gpMucB indicated that the protein is particularly thermostable both at neutral and acidic pHs and that it is an all beta protein. All data suggest that gpMucB belongs to the Kunitz-type trypsin inhibitor family explaining the direct anti-snake venom activity of Mucuna pruriens seeds.

  17. Dangerous snakes, deadly snakes and medically important snakes

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    This correspondence argues that the dangerousness of a venomous snake species is not solely determined by the venom characteristics or the lethality of the snake, and recognizes that medical importance comprises a key variable as well. The medical importance of a snake is determined by several factors – including frequency of medical attention after a bite, local or systemic envenomation provoked by the bite, fatal bites, long term consequences, availability of antivenom therapy as well as the size of the population at risk – that may vary from one region to another. PMID:24099013

  18. The neuromuscular activity of Micrurus pyrrhocryptus venom and its neutralization by commercial and specific coral snake antivenoms

    PubMed Central

    Camargo, Thiago Magalhães; de Roodt, Adolfo Rafael; da Cruz-Höfling, Maria Alice; Rodrigues-Simioni, Léa

    2011-01-01

    The neuromuscular activity ofMicrurus pyrrochryptus venom was studied in chick biventer cervicis (BC) and mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm (PND) preparations. The venom (0.5-50μg/ml) caused irreversible, time- and concentration-dependent blockade, with BC being more sensitive than PND (50% blockade with 10μg/ml in 22±;3min and 62±4min, respectively; mean±SEM, n=6; p<0.05). In BC preparations, venom (0.5μg/ml) progressively abolished ACh-induced contractures, whereas contractures to exogenous KCl and muscle twitches in curarized preparations were unaffected. The venom neither altered creatine kinase release (venom: 25.8±1.75IU/l vs control: 24.3±2.2IU/l, n=6, after 120min), nor it caused significant muscle damage (50μg of venom/ml vs control: 3.5±0.8% vs 1.1±0.7% for PND; 4.3±1.5% vs 1.2±0.5% for BC, n=5). The venom had low PLA2 activity. Neurotoxicity was effectively neutralized by commercial Micrurus antivenom and specific antivenom. These findings indicate that M. pyrrhocryptus venom acts postsynaptically on nicotinic receptors, with no significant myotoxicity. PMID:21858249

  19. The neuromuscular activity of Micrurus pyrrhocryptus venom and its neutralization by commercial and specific coral snake antivenoms.

    PubMed

    Camargo, Thiago Magalhães; de Roodt, Adolfo Rafael; da Cruz-Höfling, Maria Alice; Rodrigues-Simioni, Léa

    2011-01-01

    The neuromuscular activity ofMicrurus pyrrochryptus venom was studied in chick biventer cervicis (BC) and mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm (PND) preparations. The venom (0.5-50μg/ml) caused irreversible, time- and concentration-dependent blockade, with BC being more sensitive than PND (50% blockade with 10μg/ml in 22±;3min and 62±4min, respectively; mean±SEM, n=6; p<0.05). In BC preparations, venom (0.5μg/ml) progressively abolished ACh-induced contractures, whereas contractures to exogenous KCl and muscle twitches in curarized preparations were unaffected. The venom neither altered creatine kinase release (venom: 25.8±1.75IU/l vs control: 24.3±2.2IU/l, n=6, after 120min), nor it caused significant muscle damage (50μg of venom/ml vs control: 3.5±0.8% vs 1.1±0.7% for PND; 4.3±1.5% vs 1.2±0.5% for BC, n=5). The venom had low PLA(2) activity. Neurotoxicity was effectively neutralized by commercial Micrurus antivenom and specific antivenom. These findings indicate that M. pyrrhocryptus venom acts postsynaptically on nicotinic receptors, with no significant myotoxicity. PMID:21858249

  20. Snake venomics and antivenomics of Bothrops atrox venoms from Colombia and the Amazon regions of Brazil, Perú and Ecuador suggest the occurrence of geographic variation of venom phenotype by a trend towards paedomorphism.

    PubMed

    Núñez, Vitelbina; Cid, Pedro; Sanz, Libia; De La Torre, Pilar; Angulo, Yamileth; Lomonte, Bruno; Gutiérrez, José María; Calvete, Juan J

    2009-11-01

    The venom proteomes of Bothrops atrox from Colombia, Brazil, Ecuador, and Perú were characterized using venomic and antivenomic strategies. Our results evidence the existence of two geographically differentiated venom phenotypes. The venom from Colombia comprises at least 26 different proteins belonging to 9 different groups of toxins. PI-metalloproteinases and K49-PLA(2) molecules represent the most abundant toxins. On the other hand, the venoms from Brazilian, Ecuadorian, and Peruvian B. atrox contain predominantly PIII-metalloproteinases. These toxin profiles correlate with the venom phenotypes of adult and juvenile B. asper from Costa Rica, respectively, suggesting that paedomorphism represented a selective trend during the trans-Amazonian southward expansion of B. atrox through the Andean Corridor. The high degree of crossreactivity of a Costa Rican polyvalent (Bothrops asper, Lachesis stenophrys, Crotalus simus) antivenom against B. atrox venoms further evidenced the close evolutionary kinship between B. asper and B. atrox. This antivenom was more efficient immunodepleting proteins from the venoms of B. atrox from Brazil, Ecuador, and Perú than from Colombia. Such behaviour may be rationalized taking into account the lower content of poorly immunogenic toxins, such as PLA(2) molecules and PI-SVMPs in the paedomorphic venoms. The immunological profile of the Costa Rican antivenom strongly suggests the possibility of using this antivenom for the management of snakebites by B. atrox in Colombia and the Amazon regions of Ecuador, Perú and Brazil. PMID:19665598

  1. Study on development of Vipera lebetina snake anti-venom in chicken egg yolk for passive immunization

    PubMed Central

    Zolfagharian, Hossein; Dounighi, Naser Mohammadpour

    2015-01-01

    Chicken egg yolk antibodies against Vipera lebetina venom were evaluated for their antivenom potential. White leghorn hens were immunized with detoxified V. lebetina venom (γ-irradiated venom). The detoxified venom (200 μg) was mixed with an equal volume of complete Freund's adjuvant and was injected intramuscularly into the hens. The antibodies showed high activity (1.6 LD50/mL) in egg yolks after 12 d of venom injection. The eggs were collected after 12 days, and the egg yolks were removed and washed with purified water to remove any contamination with egg whites. The purification was performed using a method described by Maya Devi et al., followed by gel filtration (Sephadex G-50). The purity and molecular weight of antivenom antibodies (IgY) were determined using electrophoresis, and the molecular weight was found to be approximately 185 kDa. The potency of IgY was 6 LD50/mL (mice), i.e., 1 mL of IgY could neutralize 43.8 μg of standard V. lebetina venom). Our results showed that chicken egg yolk antibodies were effective in neutralizing the lethality and several pharmacological effects of V. lebetina venom and could be used for developing effective antivenom. PMID:25700656

  2. Are ticks venomous animals?

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Introduction As an ecological adaptation venoms have evolved independently in several species of Metazoa. As haematophagous arthropods ticks are mainly considered as ectoparasites due to directly feeding on the skin of animal hosts. Ticks are of major importance since they serve as vectors for several diseases affecting humans and livestock animals. Ticks are rarely considered as venomous animals despite that tick saliva contains several protein families present in venomous taxa and that many Ixodida genera can induce paralysis and other types of toxicoses. Tick saliva was previously proposed as a special kind of venom since tick venom is used for blood feeding that counteracts host defense mechanisms. As a result, the present study provides evidence to reconsider the venomous properties of tick saliva. Results Based on our extensive literature mining and in silico research, we demonstrate that ticks share several similarities with other venomous taxa. Many tick salivary protein families and their previously described functions are homologous to proteins found in scorpion, spider, snake, platypus and bee venoms. This infers that there is a structural and functional convergence between several molecular components in tick saliva and the venoms from other recognized venomous taxa. We also highlight the fact that the immune response against tick saliva and venoms (from recognized venomous taxa) are both dominated by an allergic immunity background. Furthermore, by comparing the major molecular components of human saliva, as an example of a non-venomous animal, with that of ticks we find evidence that ticks resemble more venomous than non-venomous animals. Finally, we introduce our considerations regarding the evolution of venoms in Arachnida. Conclusions Taking into account the composition of tick saliva, the venomous functions that ticks have while interacting with their hosts, and the distinguishable differences between human (non-venomous) and tick salivary

  3. Enhanced architecture of lipid-carbon nanotubes as langmuir-blodgett films to investigate the enzyme activity of phospholipases from snake venom.

    PubMed

    Caseli, Luciano; Tiburcio, Vera L B; Vargas, Frey F R; Marangoni, Sérgio; Siqueira, José R

    2012-11-15

    The immobilization of biomolecules in films with a controlled architecture permits the access of information on the molecular interactions, not only between film components, but also between the film and substances in the external environment. In this study, we investigated the immobilization of the phospholipase A(2) from snake venoms (4-nitro-3-(octanoyloxy)benzoic acid, OBZ) in solid supports as a Langmuir-Blodgett (LB) film, followed by incorporation of carbon nanotubes (CNTs). The hybrid film was characterized by infrared spectroscopy and the interactions with its catalytic substrate were investigated. The presence of CNTs leads to a structure with an adequate environment to preserve the enzyme properties, leading to an optimum catalytic activity. This enhanced architecture was exploited in terms of vibrational spectroscopy, which indicated changes in the secondary structure of the enzyme upon contact with the catalytic substrate.

  4. Venomous snakebites.

    PubMed

    Adukauskienė, Dalia; Varanauskienė, Eglė; Adukauskaitė, Agnė

    2011-01-01

    More than 5 million people are bitten by venomous snakes annually and more than 100,000 of them die. In Europe, one person dies due to envenomation every 3 years. There is only one venomous snake species in Lithuania--the common adder (Vipera berus)--which belongs to the Viperidae family; however, there are some exotic poisonous snakes in the zoos and private collections, such as those belonging to the Elapidae family (cobras, mambas, coral snakes, etc.) and the Crotalidae subfamily of the Viperidae family (pit vipers, such as rattlesnakes). Snake venom can be classified into hemotoxic, neurotoxic, necrotoxic, cardiotoxic, and nephrotoxic according to the different predominant effects depending on the family (i.e., venom of Crotalidae and Viperidae snakes is more hemotoxic and necrotoxic, whereas venom of Elapidae family is mainly neurotoxic). The intoxication degree is estimated according to the appearance of these symptoms: 1) no intoxication ("dry" bite); 2) mild intoxication (local edema and pain); 3) moderate intoxication (pain, edema spreading out of the bite zone, and systemic signs); 4) severe intoxication (shock, severe coagulopathy, and massive edemas). This topic is relevant because people tend to make major mistakes providing first aid (e.g., mouth suction, wound incision, and application of ice or heat). Therefore, this article presents the essential tips on how first aid should be performed properly according to the "Guidelines for the Management of Snake-Bites" by the World Health Organization (2010). Firstly, the victim should be reassured. Rings or other things must be removed preventing constriction of the swelling limb. Airway/breathing must be maintained. The bitten limb should be immobilized and kept below heart level to prevent venom absorption and systemic spread. Usage of pressure bandage is controversial since people usually apply it improperly. Incision, mouth suction, or excision should not be performed; neither a tourniquet nor ice or

  5. Galatrox is a C-type lectin in Bothrops atrox snake venom that selectively binds LacNAc-terminated glycans and can induce acute inflammation

    PubMed Central

    Sartim, Marco A; Riul, Thalita B; Del Cistia-Andrade, Camillo; Stowell, Sean R; Arthur, Connie M; Sorgi, Carlos A; Faccioli, Lucia H; Cummings, Richard D; Dias-Baruffi, Marcelo; Sampaio, Suely V

    2014-01-01

    Previous studies indicate that snake venom contains glycan-binding proteins (GBPs), although the binding specificity and biological activities of many of these GBPs is unclear. Here we report our studies on the glycan binding specificity and activities of galatrox, a Bothrops atrox snake venom-derived GBP. Glycan microarray analysis indicates that galatrox binds most strongly to glycans expressing N-acetyllactosamine (LacNAc), with a significant preference for Galβ1-4GlcNAcβ over Galβ1-3GlcNAcβ compounds. Galatrox also bound immobilized laminin, a LacNAc-dense extracellular matrix component, suggesting that this GBP can bind LacNAc-bearing glycoproteins. As several endogenous mammalian GBPs utilize a similar binding LacNAc binding preference to regulate neutrophil and monocyte activity, we hypothesized that galatrox may mediate B. atrox toxicity through regulation of leukocyte activity. Indeed, galatrox bound neutrophils and promoted leukocyte chemotaxis in a carbohydrate-dependent manner. Similarly, galatrox administration into the mouse peritoneal cavity induced significant neutrophil migration and the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-1α and IL-6. Exposure of bone marrow-derived macrophages to galatrox induced generation of pro-inflammatory mediators IL-6, TNF-α, and keratinocyte-derived chemokine. This signaling by galatrox was mediated via its carbohydrate recognition domain by activation of the TLR4-mediated MyD88-dependent signaling pathway. These results indicate that galatrox has pro-inflammatory activity through its interaction with LacNAc-bearing glycans on neutrophils, macrophages and extracellular matrix proteins and induce the release of pro-inflammatory mediators. PMID:24973254

  6. Galatrox is a C-type lectin in Bothrops atrox snake venom that selectively binds LacNAc-terminated glycans and can induce acute inflammation.

    PubMed

    Sartim, Marco A; Riul, Thalita B; Del Cistia-Andrade, Camillo; Stowell, Sean R; Arthur, Connie M; Sorgi, Carlos A; Faccioli, Lucia H; Cummings, Richard D; Dias-Baruffi, Marcelo; Sampaio, Suely V

    2014-11-01

    Previous studies indicate that snake venom contains glycan-binding proteins (GBPs), although the binding specificity and biological activities of many of these GBPs is unclear. Here we report our studies on the glycan binding specificity and activities of galatrox, a Bothrops atrox snake venom-derived GBP. Glycan microarray analysis indicates that galatrox binds most strongly to glycans expressing N-acetyllactosamine (LacNAc), with a significant preference for Galβ1-4GlcNAcβ over Galβ1-3GlcNAcβ compounds. Galatrox also bound immobilized laminin, a LacNAc-dense extracellular matrix component, suggesting that this GBP can bind LacNAc-bearing glycoproteins. As several endogenous mammalian GBPs utilize a similar binding LacNAc binding preference to regulate neutrophil and monocyte activity, we hypothesized that galatrox may mediate B. atrox toxicity through regulation of leukocyte activity. Indeed, galatrox bound neutrophils and promoted leukocyte chemotaxis in a carbohydrate-dependent manner. Similarly, galatrox administration into the mouse peritoneal cavity induced significant neutrophil migration and the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-1α and IL-6. Exposure of bone marrow-derived macrophages to galatrox induced generation of pro-inflammatory mediators IL-6, TNF-α, and keratinocyte-derived chemokine. This signaling by galatrox was mediated via its carbohydrate recognition domain by activation of the TLR4-mediated MyD88-dependent signaling pathway. These results indicate that galatrox has pro-inflammatory activity through its interaction with LacNAc-bearing glycans on neutrophils, macrophages and extracellular matrix proteins and induce the release of pro-inflammatory mediators. PMID:24973254

  7. Use of a Synthetic Biosensor for Neutralizing Activity-Biased Selection of Monoclonal Antibodies against Atroxlysin-I, an Hemorrhagic Metalloproteinase from Bothrops atrox Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Schneider, Francisco Santos; Nguyen, Dung Le; Castro, Karen Larissa; Cobo, Sandra; Machado de Avila, Ricardo Andrez; Ferreira, Nivia de Assis; Sanchez, Eladio Flores; Nguyen, Christophe; Granier, Claude; Galéa, Pascale; Chávez-Olortegui, Carlos; Molina, Franck

    2014-01-01

    Background The snake Bothrops atrox is responsible for the majority of envenomings in the northern region of South America. Severe local effects, including hemorrhage, which are mainly caused by snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs), are not fully neutralized by conventional serum therapy. Little is known about the immunochemistry of the P-I SVMPs since few monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against these molecules have been obtained. In addition, producing toxin-neutralizing mAbs remains very challenging. Methodology/Principal Findings Here, we report on the set-up of a functional screening based on a synthetic peptide used as a biosensor to select neutralizing mAbs against SVMPs and the successful production of neutralizing mAbs against Atroxlysin-I (Atr-I), a P-I SVMP from B. atrox. Hybridomas producing supernatants with inhibitory effect against the proteolytic activity of Atr-I towards the FRET peptide Abz-LVEALYQ-EDDnp were selected. Six IgG1 Mabs were obtained (named mAbatr1 to mAbatr6) and also two IgM. mAbatrs1, 2, 3 and 6 were purified. All showed a high specific reactivity, recognizing only Atr-I and B. atrox venom in ELISA and a high affinity, showing equilibrium constants in the nM range for Atr-I. These mAbatrs were not able to bind to Atr-I overlapping peptides, suggesting that they recognize conformational epitopes. Conclusions/Significance For the first time a functional screening based on a synthetic biosensor was successfully used for the selection of neutralizing mAbs against SVMPs. PMID:24762927

  8. Bothrops moojeni myotoxin-II, a Lys49-phospholipase A2 homologue: an example of function versatility of snake venom proteins.

    PubMed

    Stábeli, Rodrigo G; Amui, Saulo F; Sant'Ana, Carolina D; Pires, Matheus G; Nomizo, Auro; Monteiro, Marta C; Romão, Pedro R T; Guerra-Sá, Renata; Vieira, Carlos A; Giglio, José R; Fontes, Marcos R M; Soares, Andreimar M

    2006-01-01

    MjTX-II, a myotoxic phospholipase A(2) (PLA(2)) homologue from Bothrops moojeni venom, was functionally and structurally characterized. The MjTX-II characterization included: (i) functional characterization (antitumoral, antimicrobial and antiparasitic effects); (ii) effects of structural modifications by 4-bromophenacyl bromide (BPB), cyanogen bromide (CNBr), acetic anhydride and 2-nitrobenzenesulphonyl fluoride (NBSF); (iii) enzymatic characterization: inhibition by low molecular weight heparin and EDTA; and (iv) molecular characterization: cDNA sequence and molecular structure prediction. The results demonstrated that MjTX-II displayed antimicrobial activity by growth inhibition against Escherichia coli and Candida albicans, antitumoral activity against Erlich ascitic tumor (EAT), human breast adenocarcinoma (SK-BR-3) and human T leukemia cells (JURKAT) and antiparasitic effects against Schistosoma mansoni and Leishmania spp., which makes MjTX-II a promising molecular model for future therapeutic applications, as well as other multifunctional homologous Lys49-PLA(2)s or even derived peptides. This work provides useful insights into the structural determinants of the action of Lys49-PLA(2) homologues and, together with additional strategies, supports the concept of the presence of others "bioactive sites" distinct from the catalytic site in snake venom myotoxic PLA(2)s. PMID:16442348

  9. Molecular cloning, expression and characterization of albolamin: a type P-IIa snake venom metalloproteinase from green pit viper (Cryptelytrops albolabris).

    PubMed

    Jangprasert, Panchalee; Rojnuckarin, Ponlapat

    2014-03-01

    Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) can damage vessel wall, degrade clotting factors, inhibit integrins and block platelet functions. Studying them not only gives us deeper insights in pathogenesis of snakebites, but also potentially yields novel therapeutic agents. Here, we discovered a clone of an RGD-containing SVMP from the green pit viper (Cryptelytrops albolabris) venom gland cDNA library. Sequence analysis revealed that it belonged to the P-IIa subclass of SVMP comprising signal peptide, prodomain, metalloproteinase and disintegrin. Compared with other P-II SVMPs, it contained 2 additional conserved cysteines that were predicted to prevent the release of disintegrin from the metalloproteinase domain in the mature protein. The N-terminal histidine-tagged construct of metalloproteinase and disintegrin domains of albolamin was inserted into the pPICZαA vector and expressed in Pichia pastoris. The recombinant protein molecular weight was approximately 35 kDa on Western blot probed with anti-polyhistidine antibody. The recombinant albolamin could digest human type IV collagen starting within 15 min after incubation. In addition, it dose-dependently inhibited collagen-induced platelet aggregation with the IC50 of 1.8 μM. However, there was no effect on ADP-induced platelet aggregation. Therefore, the inhibition mechanism is probably through blocking collagen receptor(s). Albolamin activities probably contributed to pathology of green pit viper bites. Its disintegrin domain deserves further studies for the potential to be a useful agent affecting platelet functions. PMID:24380672

  10. Putative membrane lytic sites of P-type and S-type cardiotoxins from snake venoms as probed by all-atom molecular dynamics simulations.

    PubMed

    Gorai, Biswajit; Karthikeyan, Muthusamy; Sivaraman, Thirunavukkarasu

    2016-10-01

    Cardiotoxins (CTXs) belonging to the three-finger toxin superfamily of snake venoms are one of principal toxic components and the protein toxins exhibit membrane lytic activities when the venoms are injected into victims. In the present study, complex formations between CTX VI (a P-type CTX from Naja atra) and CTX1 (an S-type CTX from Naja naja) on zwitterionic POPC bilayers (a major lipid component of cell membranes) have been studied in near physiological conditions for a total dynamic time scale of 1.35 μs using all-atom molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. Comprehensive analyses of the MD data revealed that residues such as Leu1, Lys2, Tyr11, Lys31, Asp57 and Arg58 of CTX VI, and Ala16, Lys30 and Arg58 of CTX1 were crucial for establishing interactions with the POPC bilayer. Moreover, loop I, along with globular head and loop II of CTX VI, and loop II of CTX1 were found to be the structural regions chiefly governing complex formation of the respective proteins with POPC. Rationalizations for the differential binding modes of CTXs and implications of the findings for designing small molecular inhibitors to the toxins are also discussed. Graphical Abstract Binding modes of a P-type CTX and an S-type CTX towards the POPC bilayer. PMID:27628673

  11. Purification and characterization of tenerplasminin-1, a serine peptidase inhibitor with antiplasmin activity from the coral snake (Micrurus tener tener) venom.

    PubMed

    Vivas, Jeilyn; Ibarra, Carlos; Salazar, Ana M; Neves-Ferreira, Ana G C; Sánchez, Elda E; Perales, Jonás; Rodríguez-Acosta, Alexis; Guerrero, Belsy

    2016-01-01

    A plasmin inhibitor, named tenerplasminin-1 (TP1), was isolated from Micrurus tener tener (Mtt) venom. It showed a molecular mass of 6542Da, similarly to Kunitz-type serine peptidase inhibitors. The amidolytic activity of plasmin (0.5nM) on synthetic substrate S-2251 was inhibited by 91% following the incubation with TP1 (1nM). Aprotinin (2nM) used as the positive control of inhibition, reduced the plasmin amidolytic activity by 71%. Plasmin fibrinolytic activity (0.05nM) was inhibited by 67% following incubation with TP1 (0.1nM). The degradation of fibrinogen chains induced by plasmin, trypsin or elastase was inhibited by TP1 at a 1:2, 1:4 and 1:20 enzyme:inhibitor ratio, respectively. On the other hand, the proteolytic activity of crude Mtt venom on fibrinogen chains, previously attributed to metallopeptidases, was not abolished by TP1. The tPA-clot lysis assay showed that TP1 (0.2nM) acts like aprotinin (0.4nM) inducing a delay in lysis time and lysis rate which may be associated with the inhibition of plasmin generated from the endogenous plasminogen activation. TP1 is the first serine protease plasmin-like inhibitor isolated from Mtt snake venom which has been characterized in relation to its mechanism of action, formation of a plasmin:TP1 complex and therapeutic potential as anti-fibrinolytic agent, a biological characteristic of great interest in the field of biomedical research. They could be used to regulate the fibrinolytic system in pathologies such as metastatic cancer, parasitic infections, hemophilia and other hemorrhagic syndromes, in which an intense fibrinolytic activity is observed.

  12. Induction of apoptosis and growth arrest in human breast carcinoma cells by a snake (Walterinnesia aegyptia) venom combined with silica nanoparticles: crosstalk between Bcl2 and caspase 3.

    PubMed

    Al-Sadoon, Mohamed K; Abdel-Maksoud, Mostafa A; Rabah, Danny M; Badr, Gamal

    2012-01-01

    We recently demonstrated that the snake venom extracted from Walterinnesia aegyptia (WEV) either alone or combined with silica nanoparticles (WEV+NP) enhanced the proliferation of mice immune cells and simultaneously decreased the proliferation of human breast carcinoma cell line (MDA-MB-231). However, the molecular mechanism of how this venom induced growth arrest of breast cancer cells has not been studied. In this context, we extended our study to evaluate the anti-tumor potential of WEV and WEV+NP on the human breast carcinoma cell lines MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7, as well as their effects on non-tumorigenic normal breast epithelial cells (MCF-10). The IC(50 )values of WEV alone and WEV+NP in these cell lines were determined to be 50 ng/ml and 20 ng/ml, respectively. Interestingly, at these concentrations, the venom did not affect the viability of normal MCF-10 cells and treatment of all these cell lines with NP alone did not affect their viability. Using annexin-V binding assay followed by flow cytometry analysis, we found that combination of WEV with NP strongly induced apoptosis in MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7 cancer cells without significant effect on normal MCF-10 cells. Furthermore, we found that WEV+NP decreased the expression of Bcl2 and enhanced the activation of caspase 3 in MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7 cells. Most importantly, WEV+NP-treated breast cancer cells, but not normal MCF-10 cells, exhibited a significant (P<0.05) reduction in actin polymerization and cytoskeletal rearrangement in response to CXCL12. Our data reveal biological effects of WEV or WEV+NP and the underlying mechanisms to fight breast cancer cells. PMID:22854437

  13. Purification and characterization of tenerplasminin-1, a serine peptidase inhibitor with antiplasmin activity from the coral snake (Micrurus tener tener) venom

    PubMed Central

    Vivas, Jeilyn; Ibarra, Carlos; Salazar, Ana M.; Neves-Ferreira, Ana G.C.; Sánchez, Elda E.; Perales, Jonás; Rodríguez-Acosta, Alexis; Guerrero, Belsy

    2015-01-01

    A plasmin inhibitor, named tenerplasminin-1 (TP1), was isolated from Micrurus tener tener (Mtt) venom. It showed a molecular mass of 6542 Da, similarly to Kunitz-type serine peptidase inhibitors. The amidolytic activity of plasmin (0.5 nM) on synthetic substrate S-2251 was inhibited by 91% following the incubation with TP1 (1 nM). Aprotinin (2 nM) used as the positive control of inhibition, reduced the plasmin amidolytic activity by 71%. Plasmin fibrinolytic activity (0.05 nM) was inhibited by 67% following incubation with TP1 (0.1 nM). The degradation of fibrinogen chains induced by plasmin, trypsin or elastase was inhibited by TP1 at a 1:2, 1:4 and 1:20 enzyme:inhibitor ratio, respectively. On the other hand, the proteolytic activity of crude Mtt venom on fibrinogen chains, previously attributed to metallopeptidases, was not abolished by TP1. The tPA-clot lysis assay showed that TP1 (0.2 nM) acts like aprotinin (0.4 nM) inducing a delay in lysis time and lysis rate which may be associated with the inhibition of plasmin generated from the endogenous plasminogen activation. TP1 is the first serine protease plasmin-like inhibitor isolated from Mtt snake venom which has been characterized in relation to its mechanism of action, formation of a plasmin:TP1 complex and therapeutic potential as anti-fibrinolytic agent, a biological characteristic of great interest in the field of biomedical research. They could be used to regulate the fibrinolytic system in pathologies such as metastatic cancer, parasitic infections, hemophilia and other hemorrhagic syndromes, in which an intense fibrinolytic activity is observed. PMID:26419785

  14. Albocollagenase, a novel recombinant P-III snake venom metalloproteinase from green pit viper (Cryptelytrops albolabris), digests collagen and inhibits platelet aggregation.

    PubMed

    Pinyachat, Anuwat; Rojnuckarin, Ponlapat; Muanpasitporn, Chuanchom; Singhamatr, Pon; Nuchprayoon, Surang

    2011-04-01

    Molecular cloning and functional characterization of P-III snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) will give us deeper insights in the pathogenesis of viper bites. This may lead to novel therapy for venom-induced local tissue damages, the complication refractory to current antivenom. The aim of this study was to elucidate the in vitro activities of a new SVMP from the green pit viper (GPV) using recombinant DNA technology. We report, here, a new cDNA clone from GPV (Cryptelytrops albolabris) venom glands encoding 614 amino acid residues P-III SVMP, termed albocollagenase. The conceptually translated protein comprised a signal peptide and prodomain, followed by a metalloproteinase domain containing a zinc-binding motifs, HEXGHXXGXXH-CIM and 9 cysteine residues. The disintegrin-like and cysteine-rich domains possessed 24 cysteines and a DCD (Asp-Cys-Asp) motif. The albocollagenase deduced amino acid sequence alignments showed approximately 70% identity with other P-III SVMPs. Notably, the prodomain was highly conserved, while the metalloproteinase, disintegrin-like and cysteine-rich domains contained several differences. Albocollagenase without the signal peptide and prodomain was expressed in Pichia pastoris with an N-terminal six-histidine tag. After affinity purification from the supernatant of methanol-induced media, SDS-PAGE and Western blot analysis in both reducing and non-reducing conditions showed a protein band of approximately 62 kDa. The recombinant albocollagenase could digest human type IV collagen from human placenta basement membrane within 1 min. After 10-min incubation, it also inhibited collagen-induced platelet aggregation with 50% inhibitory concentration (IC₅₀) of 70 nM. This is the first report of the active recombinant SVMP enzymes expressed in P. pastoris. The results suggest the significant roles of P-III SVMP in local and systemic pathology of envenomated patients. Inhibitors of this SVMP will be investigated in further studies to find a

  15. Therapeutic efficacy and molecular mechanisms of snake (Walterinnesia aegyptia) venom-loaded silica nanoparticles in the treatment of breast cancer- and prostate cancer-bearing experimental mouse models.

    PubMed

    Badr, Gamal; Al-Sadoon, Mohamed K; Rabah, Danny M

    2013-12-01

    The treatment of drug-resistant cancer is a clinical challenge, and thus screening for novel anticancer drugs is critically important. We recently demonstrated a strong enhancement of the antitumor activity of snake (Walterinnesia aegyptia) venom (WEV) in vitro in breast carcinoma, prostate cancer, and multiple myeloma cell lines but not in normal cells when the venom was combined with silica nanoparticles (WEV+NP). In the present study, we investigated the in vivo therapeutic efficacy of WEV+NP in breast cancer- and prostate cancer-bearing experimental mouse models. Xenograft breast and prostate tumor mice models were randomized into 4 groups for each cancer model (10 mice per group) and were treated with vehicle (control), NP, WEV, or WEV+NP daily for 28 days post tumor inoculation. The tumor volumes were monitored throughout the experiment. On Day 28 post tumor inoculation, breast and prostate tumor cells were collected and either directly cultured for flow cytometry analysis or lysed for Western blot and ELISA analysis. Treatment with WEV+NP or WEV alone significantly reduced both breast and prostate tumor volumes compared to treatment with NP or vehicle alone. Compared to treatment with WEV alone, treatment of breast and prostate cancer cells with WEV+NP induced marked elevations in the levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS), hydroperoxides, and nitric oxide; robust reductions in the levels of the chemokines CXCL9, CXCL10, CXCL12, CXCL13, and CXCL16 and decreased surface expression of their cognate chemokine receptors CXCR3, CXCR4, CXCR5, and CXCR6; and subsequent reductions in the chemokine-dependent migration of both breast and prostate cancer cells. Furthermore, we found that WEV+NP strongly inhibited insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1)- and epidermal growth factor (EGF)-mediated proliferation of breast and prostate cancer cells, respectively, and enhanced the induction of apoptosis by increasing the activity of caspase-3,-8, and -9 in both breast and

  16. Therapeutic efficacy and molecular mechanisms of snake (Walterinnesia aegyptia) venom-loaded silica nanoparticles in the treatment of breast cancer- and prostate cancer-bearing experimental mouse models.

    PubMed

    Badr, Gamal; Al-Sadoon, Mohamed K; Rabah, Danny M

    2013-12-01

    The treatment of drug-resistant cancer is a clinical challenge, and thus screening for novel anticancer drugs is critically important. We recently demonstrated a strong enhancement of the antitumor activity of snake (Walterinnesia aegyptia) venom (WEV) in vitro in breast carcinoma, prostate cancer, and multiple myeloma cell lines but not in normal cells when the venom was combined with silica nanoparticles (WEV+NP). In the present study, we investigated the in vivo therapeutic efficacy of WEV+NP in breast cancer- and prostate cancer-bearing experimental mouse models. Xenograft breast and prostate tumor mice models were randomized into 4 groups for each cancer model (10 mice per group) and were treated with vehicle (control), NP, WEV, or WEV+NP daily for 28 days post tumor inoculation. The tumor volumes were monitored throughout the experiment. On Day 28 post tumor inoculation, breast and prostate tumor cells were collected and either directly cultured for flow cytometry analysis or lysed for Western blot and ELISA analysis. Treatment with WEV+NP or WEV alone significantly reduced both breast and prostate tumor volumes compared to treatment with NP or vehicle alone. Compared to treatment with WEV alone, treatment of breast and prostate cancer cells with WEV+NP induced marked elevations in the levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS), hydroperoxides, and nitric oxide; robust reductions in the levels of the chemokines CXCL9, CXCL10, CXCL12, CXCL13, and CXCL16 and decreased surface expression of their cognate chemokine receptors CXCR3, CXCR4, CXCR5, and CXCR6; and subsequent reductions in the chemokine-dependent migration of both breast and prostate cancer cells. Furthermore, we found that WEV+NP strongly inhibited insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1)- and epidermal growth factor (EGF)-mediated proliferation of breast and prostate cancer cells, respectively, and enhanced the induction of apoptosis by increasing the activity of caspase-3,-8, and -9 in both breast and

  17. A neutralizing recombinant single chain antibody, scFv, against BaP1, A P-I hemorrhagic metalloproteinase from Bothrops asper snake venom.

    PubMed

    Castro, J M A; Oliveira, T S; Silveira, C R F; Caporrino, M C; Rodriguez, D; Moura-da-Silva, A M; Ramos, O H P; Rucavado, A; Gutiérrez, J M; Magalhães, G S; Faquim-Mauro, E L; Fernandes, I

    2014-09-01

    BaP1 is a P-I class snake venom metalloproteinase (SVMP) relevant in the local tissue damage associated with envenomings by Bothrops asper, a medically important snake species in Central America and parts of South and North America. The main treatment for these accidents is the passive immunotherapy using antibodies raised in horses. In order to obtain more specific and batch-to-batch consistent antivenons, recombinant antibodies are considered a good option compared to animal immunization. We constructed a recombinant single chain variable fragment (scFv) from a monoclonal antibody against BaP1 (MABaP1) formerly secreted by a hybridoma clone. This recombinant antibody was cloned into pMST3 vector in fusion with SUMO protein and contains VH and VL domains linked by a flexible (G4S)3 polypeptide (scFvBaP1). The aim of this work was to produce scFvBaP1 and to evaluate its potential concerning the neutralization of biologically important activities of BaP1. The cytoplasmic expression of this construct was successfully achieved in C43 (DE3) bacteria. Our results showed that scFvBaP1-SUMO fusion protein presented an electrophoretic band of around 43 kDa from which SUMO alone corresponded to 13.6 kDa, and only the scFv was able to recognize BaP1 as well as the whole venom by ELISA. In contrast, neither an irrelevant scFv anti-LDL nor its MoAb partner recognized it. BaP1-induced fibrinolysis was significantly neutralized by scFvBaP1, but not by SUMO, in a concentration-dependent manner. In addition, scFvBaP1, as well as MaBaP1, completely neutralized in vivo hemorrhage, muscle necrosis, and inflammation induced by the toxin. Docking analyses revealed possible modes of interaction of the recombinant antibody with BaP1. Our data showed that scFv recognized BaP1 and whole B. asper venom, and neutralized biological effects of this SVMP. This scFv antibody can be used for understanding the molecular mechanisms of neutralization of SVMPs, and for exploring the potential of

  18. North American snake envenomation in the dog and cat.

    PubMed

    Gilliam, Lyndi L; Brunker, Jill

    2011-11-01

    Snake envenomation can be a cause of significant morbidity in dogs and cats in North America. Being familiar with the venomous snakes in your area and understanding the mechanisms of action of their venom will allow for successful treatment of envenomation cases. Treatment of snake envenomation revolves around supportive care in mild to moderate cases and venom neutralization with antivenom in severe cases. Dogs and cats envenomated by North American snakes have a good prognosis if treated appropriately.

  19. Activation of peripheral ATP-sensitive K+ channels mediates the antinociceptive effect of Crotalus durissus terrificus snake venom.

    PubMed

    Picolo, Gisele; Cassola, Antônio Carlos; Cury, Yara

    2003-05-23

    The role of peripheral potassium channels on the antinociceptive effect of Crotalus durissus terrificus venom, a mixed delta- and kappa-opioid receptor agonist, was investigated in hyperalgesia induced by carrageenin or prostaglandin E(2). Rat paw pressure test was applied before and 3 h after the intraplantar (i.pl.) injection of the nociceptive stimuli. Oral administration of venom 2 h after carrageenin or prostaglandin E(2) induces antinociception. Local pretreatment with 4-aminopyridine and tetraethylammonium (blockers of voltage-dependent K(+) channel) or charybdotoxin and apamin (inhibitors of large- and small-conductance Ca(2+)-activated K(+) channel, respectively) did not modify venom effect. On the other hand, glybenclamide, an inhibitor of ATP-sensitive K(+) channel abolished antinociception induced by the venom. Glybenclamide also inhibited the antinociceptive effect of [D-Pen(2.5)] enkephalin (DPDPE), a delta opioid receptor agonist, but did not modify the effect of (+)-trans-(1R,2R)-U-50488 (U50488), a kappa opioid receptor agonist. Diazoxide and pinacidil, two ATP-sensitive K(+) channel openers, injected by intraplantar route, induced a long-lasting increment of pain threshold of the animals and produced antinociception in both models of hyperalgesia. These results suggest that the antinociceptive effect of crotalid venom is mediated by activation of ATP-sensitive K(+) channels at peripheral afferent neurons.

  20. Linear B-cell epitopes in BthTX-1, BthTX-II and BthA-1, phospholipase A₂'s from Bothrops jararacussu snake venom, recognized by therapeutically neutralizing commercial horse antivenom.

    PubMed

    De-Simone, Salvatore G; Napoleão-Pego, Paloma; Teixeira-Pinto, Luiz A L; Santos, Jonathas D L; De-Simone, Thatiane S; Melgarejo, Anibal R; Aguiar, Aniesse S; Marchi-Salvador, Daniela P

    2013-09-01

    The benefits from treatment with antivenom sera are indubitable. However, the mechanism for toxin neutralization has not been completely elucidated. A mixture of anti-bothropic and anti-crotalic horse antivenom has been reported to be more effective in neutralizing the effects of Bothrops jararacussu snake venom than anti-bothropic antivenom alone. This study determined which regions in the three PLA₂s from B. jararacussu snake venom are bound by antibodies in tetravalent anti-bothropic and monovalent anti-crotalic commercial horse antivenom. Mapping experiments of BthTX-I, BthTX-II and BthA-I using two small libraries of 69 peptides each revealed six major IgG-binding epitopes that were recognized by both anti-bothropic and anti-crotalic horse antivenom. Two epitopes in BthTX-I were only recognized by the anti-bothropic horse antivenom, while anti-crotalic horse antivenom recognized four unique epitopes across the three PLA₂s. Our studies suggest that the harmful activities of the PLA₂s present in the venom of B. jararacussu are neutralized by the combinatorial treatment with both antivenom sera through their complementary binding sites, which provides a wide coverage on the PLA₂s. This is the first peptide microarray of PLA₂s from B. jararacussu snake venom to survey the performance of commercial horse antiophidic antivenom. Regions recognized by the protective antivenom sera are prime candidates for improved venom cocktails or a chimeric protein encoding the multiple epitopes to immunize animals as well as for designing future synthetic vaccines. PMID:23792452

  1. Aptamer RA36 inhibits of human, rabbit, and rat plasma coagulation activated with thrombin or snake venom coagulases.

    PubMed

    Savchik, E Yu; Kalinina, T B; Drozd, N N; Makarov, V A; Zav'yalova, E G; Lapsheva, E N; Mudrik, N N; Babij, A V; Pavlova, G V; Golovin, A V; Kopylov, A M

    2013-11-01

    RA36 DNA aptamer is a direct anticoagulant prolonging clotting time of human, rabbit, and rat plasma in the thrombin time test. Anticoagulant activity of RA36 is lower than that of recombinant hirudin. During inhibition of human plasma clotting activated with echitox (coagulase from Echis multisquamatus venom), the aptamer presumably binds to meisothrombin exosite I. The sensitivity of human plasma to the aptamer 5-fold surpasses that of rat plasma. Analysis of RA36 binding to coagulase of Agkistrodon halys venom (ancistron) is required for proving the effect of aptamer on polymerization of human fibrinogen. PMID:24319726

  2. Purification of nasulysin-1: A new toxin from Porthidium nasutum snake venom that specifically induces apoptosis in leukemia cell model through caspase-3 and apoptosis-inducing factor activation.

    PubMed

    Bonilla-Porras, Angelica Rocio; Vargas, Leidy Johana; Jimenez-Del-Rio, Marlene; Nuñez, Vitelbina; Velez-Pardo, Carlos

    2016-09-15

    Nasulysin-1, a new zinc-metalloproteinase from the snake venom of the hognose pit viper Porthidium nasutum, was purified to homogeneity using molecular exclusion chromatography and high performance liquid chromatography on a reverse phase column. The molecular mass of the purified enzyme was 25,900 kDa and pI 4.1, as determined by 1D and 2D polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) analysis of the N-terminal amino acid sequence (1FSPRYIELVVVADHGMFKKYNSNLNTIR28; 1TASLANLEVWSK12; 1DLLPR6) of the purified nasulysin-1, shows close structural homology with other snake venom metalloproteinases isolated from different snake venoms. The purified nasulysin-1 showed specific apoptosis-inducing activity in Jurkat and K562 cells, a T-cell acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL) and chronic myeloid leukemia (AML) cell model, respectively, without affecting the viability of human lymphocyte cells. After 48 h treatment, nasulysin-1 (20 μg/mL) induced loss of the mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨm), activated the apoptosis-inducing factor (AIF), activated the protease caspase-3, and induced chromatin condensation and DNA fragmentation, all hallmarks of apoptosis. These results strongly suggest that nasulysin-1 selectively induces apoptosis to eliminate leukemia cells. Thus, these data warrant further investigation into the use of the metalloproteinase protein, nasulysin-1 as a potential therapeutic agent for treating leukemia. PMID:27530665

  3. Antibody-mediated neutralization and binding-reversal studies on alpha-neurotoxins from Micrurus nigrocinctus nigrocinctus (coral snake) venom.

    PubMed

    Alape-Giron, A; Stiles, B G; Gutierrez, J M

    1996-03-01

    An ELISA based, non-radioactive acetylcholine receptor (AchR) binding assay was used to detect the alpha-neurotoxins present in Micrurus nigrocinctus nigrocinctus venom. Sera from horses hyperimmunized against M. nigrocinctus venom contain antibodies which inhibit the binding of M. n. nigrocinctus alpha-neurotoxins to AchR and reverse the binding of toxins already complexed with the receptor. This result supports the importance of using antivenom therapeutically in M. n. nigrocinctus envenomations even after the onset of neurological symptoms. M. nigrocinctus antivenoms cross-reacted in an ELISA with several elapid alpha-neurotoxins and inhibited the binding of Bungarus multicinctus alpha-bungarotoxin and Naja naja oxiana neurotoxin II to AchR in vitro, suggesting the presence of short-chain and long-chain alpha-neurotoxins in M. nigrocinctus venom. In vivo neutralization experiments with M. nigrocinctus antivenom demonstrate that M. nigrocinctus venom contains short-chain alpha-neurotoxin(s) which share common neutralizing epitope(s) with Naja naja oxiana neurotoxin II.

  4. Full-Length Venom Protein cDNA Sequences from Venom-Derived mRNA: Exploring Compositional Variation and Adaptive Multigene Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Modahl, Cassandra M.; Mackessy, Stephen P.

    2016-01-01

    Envenomation of humans by snakes is a complex and continuously evolving medical emergency, and treatment is made that much more difficult by the diverse biochemical composition of many venoms. Venomous snakes and their venoms also provide models for the study of molecular evolutionary processes leading to adaptation and genotype-phenotype relationships. To compare venom complexity and protein sequences, venom gland transcriptomes are assembled, which usually requires the sacrifice of snakes for tissue. However, toxin transcripts are also present in venoms, offering the possibility of obtaining cDNA sequences directly from venom. This study provides evidence that unknown full-length venom protein transcripts can be obtained from the venoms of multiple species from all major venomous snake families. These unknown venom protein cDNAs are obtained by the use of primers designed from conserved signal peptide sequences within each venom protein superfamily. This technique was used to assemble a partial venom gland transcriptome for the Middle American Rattlesnake (Crotalus simus tzabcan) by amplifying sequences for phospholipases A2, serine proteases, C-lectins, and metalloproteinases from within venom. Phospholipase A2 sequences were also recovered from the venoms of several rattlesnakes and an elapid snake (Pseudechis porphyriacus), and three-finger toxin sequences were recovered from multiple rear-fanged snake species, demonstrating that the three major clades of advanced snakes (Elapidae, Viperidae, Colubridae) have stable mRNA present in their venoms. These cDNA sequences from venom were then used to explore potential activities derived from protein sequence similarities and evolutionary histories within these large multigene superfamilies. Venom-derived sequences can also be used to aid in characterizing venoms that lack proteomic profiles and identify sequence characteristics indicating specific envenomation profiles. This approach, requiring only venom, provides

  5. Molecular Characterization of Lys49 and Asp49 Phospholipases A2 from Snake Venom and Their Antiviral Activities against Dengue virus

    PubMed Central

    Cecilio, Alzira B.; Caldas, Sergio; De Oliveira, Raiana A.; Santos, Arthur S. B.; Richardson, Michael; Naumann, Gustavo B.; Schneider, Francisco S.; Alvarenga, Valeria G.; Estevão-Costa, Maria I.; Fuly, Andre L.; Eble, Johannes A.; Sanchez, Eladio F.

    2013-01-01

    We report the detailed molecular characterization of two PLA2s, Lys49 and Asp49 isolated from Bothrops leucurus venom, and examined their effects against Dengue virus (DENV). The Bl-PLA2s, named BlK-PLA2 and BlD-PLA2, are composed of 121 and 122 amino acids determined by automated sequencing of the native proteins and peptides produced by digestion with trypsin. They contain fourteen cysteines with pIs of 9.05 and 8.18 for BlK- and BlD-PLA2s, and show a high degree of sequence similarity to homologous snake venom PLA2s, but may display different biological effects. Molecular masses of 13,689.220 (Lys49) and 13,978.386 (Asp49) were determined by mass spectrometry. DENV causes a prevalent arboviral disease in humans, and no clinically approved antiviral therapy is currently available to treat DENV infections. The maximum non-toxic concentration of the proteins to LLC-MK2 cells determined by MTT assay was 40 µg/mL for Bl-PLA2s (pool) and 20 µg/mL for each isoform. Antiviral effects of Bl-PLA2s were assessed by quantitative Real-Time PCR. Bl-PLA2s were able to reduce DENV-1, DENV-2, and DENV-3 serotypes in LLC-MK2 cells infection. Our data provide further insight into the structural properties and their antiviral activity against DENV, opening up possibilities for biotechnological applications of these Bl-PLA2s as tools of research. PMID:24131891

  6. Reappraisal of Vipera aspis Venom Neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Ferquel, Elisabeth; de Haro, Luc; Jan, Virginie; Guillemin, Isabelle; Jourdain, Sabine; Teynié, Alexandre; d'Alayer, Jacques; Choumet, Valérie

    2007-01-01

    Background The variation of venom composition with geography is an important aspect of intraspecific variability in the Vipera genus, although causes of this variability remain unclear. The diversity of snake venom is important both for our understanding of venomous snake evolution and for the preparation of relevant antivenoms to treat envenomations. A geographic intraspecific variation in snake venom composition was recently reported for Vipera aspis aspis venom in France. Since 1992, cases of human envenomation after Vipera aspis aspis bites in south-east France involving unexpected neurological signs were regularly reported. The presence of genes encoding PLA2 neurotoxins in the Vaa snake genome led us to investigate any neurological symptom associated with snake bites in other regions of France and in neighboring countries. In parallel, we used several approaches to characterize the venom PLA2 composition of the snakes captured in the same areas. Methodology/Principal Findings We conducted an epidemiological survey of snake bites in various regions of France. In parallel, we carried out the analysis of the genes and the transcripts encoding venom PLA2s. We used SELDI technology to study the diversity of PLA2 in various venom samples. Neurological signs (mainly cranial nerve disturbances) were reported after snake bites in three regions of France: Languedoc-Roussillon, Midi-Pyrénées and Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur. Genomes of Vipera aspis snakes from south-east France were shown to contain ammodytoxin isoforms never described in the genome of Vipera aspis from other French regions. Surprisingly, transcripts encoding venom neurotoxic PLA2s were found in snakes of Massif Central region. Accordingly, SELDI analysis of PLA2 venom composition confirmed the existence of population of neurotoxic Vipera aspis snakes in the west part of the Massif Central mountains. Conclusions/Significance The association of epidemiological studies to genetic, biochemical and

  7. Recombinant adenovirus snake venom cystatin inhibits the growth, invasion, and metastasis of B16F10 cells in vitro and in vivo.

    PubMed

    Xie, Qun; Tang, Nanhong; Lin, Yangyuan; Wang, Xiaoqian; Lin, Xu; Lin, Jianyin

    2013-12-01

    Previous studies have shown that transfection of the snake venom cystatin (sv-cystatin) gene can inhibit the invasion and metastasis of tumor cells. The aim of this study was to investigate the pharmaceutical applications of sv-cystatin in melanoma gene therapy. We constructed a recombinant adenovirus carrying sv-cystatin (Ad/sv-cystatin) and a control virus (Ad/null). Matrigel assays were used to assess melanoma cell migration and invasiveness in vitro. The antimelanoma effects of Ad/sv-cystatin were assessed in a syngeneic mouse model with an experimental lung colonization assay. Ad/sv-cystatin significantly inhibited the invasion and growth of B16F10 cells in vitro compared with control and Ad/null. Ad/sv-cystatin significantly inhibited experimental lung colonization in C57BL/6 mice as compared with that in control (P<0.001) and Ad/null-treated mice (P<0.001), with an inhibition rate of 51 and 46%, respectively. Ad/sv-cystatin slowed the increase in lung weight in C57BL/6 mice as compared with that in control mice (P<0.001) and Ad/null-treated mice (P<0.001), with an inhibition rate of 40 and 35%, respectively. Our results indicate that Ad/sv-cystatin suppresses mouse melanoma invasion, metastasis, and growth in vitro and in vivo. Our findings provide support for the further examination of the pharmaceutical applications of Ad/sv-cystatin.

  8. Inhibition of invasion and metastasis of MHCC97H cells by expression of snake venom cystatin through reduction of proteinases activity and epithelial-mesenchymal transition.

    PubMed

    Tang, Nanhong; Xie, Qun; Wang, Xiaoqian; Li, Xiujin; Chen, Yanlin; Lin, Xu; Lin, Jianyin

    2011-05-01

    Snake venom cystatin (sv-cystatin) is a member of the cystatin family of cysteine protease inhibitors. To further evaluate the possibility of sv-cystatin in cancer therapy, this study examined the effects of sv-cystatin on the invasion and metastasis of liver cancer cells (MHCC97H) in vitro and in vivo as well as the underlying mechanism. sv-cystatin cDNA was transfected into MHCC97H cells and the anti-invasion and antimetastasis effects of sv-cystatin were determined using migration and matrigel invasion assays and a lung-metastasis mice model. The results suggest that sv-cyst clone (sv-cystatin expression in MHCC97H cells) delayed the invasion and metastasis in vitro and in vivo compared to the parental, mock and si-sv-cyst clone cells (inhibited sv-cystatin expression by siRNA). The decreased activities of cathepsin B, MMP-2 and MMP-9 and EMT change index including higher E-cadherin, lower N-cadherin and decreased Twist activity were observed in the sv-cyst clone, which contributes to the change in invasion and metastasis ability of MHCC97H cells. This study provides evidence that expression of the sv-cystatin gene in MHCC97H cells inhibits tumor cell invasion and metastasis through the reduction of the proteinases activity and Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition (EMT), which might contribute to the anticancer research of the sv-cystatin protein.

  9. Insights into the Evolution of a Snake Venom Multi-Gene Family from the Genomic Organization of Echis ocellatus SVMP Genes.

    PubMed

    Sanz, Libia; Calvete, Juan J

    2016-01-01

    The molecular events underlying the evolution of the Snake Venom Metalloproteinase (SVMP) family from an A Disintegrin And Metalloproteinase (ADAM) ancestor remain poorly understood. Comparative genomics may provide decisive information to reconstruct the evolutionary history of this multi-locus toxin family. Here, we report the genomic organization of Echis ocellatus genes encoding SVMPs from the PII and PI classes. Comparisons between them and between these genes and the genomic structures of Anolis carolinensis ADAM28 and E. ocellatus PIII-SVMP EOC00089 suggest that insertions and deletions of intronic regions played key roles along the evolutionary pathway that shaped the current diversity within the multi-locus SVMP gene family. In particular, our data suggest that emergence of EOC00028-like PI-SVMP from an ancestral PII(e/d)-type SVMP involved splicing site mutations that abolished both the 3' splice AG acceptor site of intron 12* and the 5' splice GT donor site of intron 13*, and resulted in the intronization of exon 13* and the consequent destruction of the structural integrity of the PII-SVMP characteristic disintegrin domain. PMID:27420095

  10. Insights into the Evolution of a Snake Venom Multi-Gene Family from the Genomic Organization of Echis ocellatus SVMP Genes

    PubMed Central

    Sanz, Libia; Calvete, Juan J.

    2016-01-01

    The molecular events underlying the evolution of the Snake Venom Metalloproteinase (SVMP) family from an A Disintegrin And Metalloproteinase (ADAM) ancestor remain poorly understood. Comparative genomics may provide decisive information to reconstruct the evolutionary history of this multi-locus toxin family. Here, we report the genomic organization of Echis ocellatus genes encoding SVMPs from the PII and PI classes. Comparisons between them and between these genes and the genomic structures of Anolis carolinensis ADAM28 and E. ocellatus PIII-SVMP EOC00089 suggest that insertions and deletions of intronic regions played key roles along the evolutionary pathway that shaped the current diversity within the multi-locus SVMP gene family. In particular, our data suggest that emergence of EOC00028-like PI-SVMP from an ancestral PII(e/d)-type SVMP involved splicing site mutations that abolished both the 3′ splice AG acceptor site of intron 12* and the 5′ splice GT donor site of intron 13*, and resulted in the intronization of exon 13* and the consequent destruction of the structural integrity of the PII-SVMP characteristic disintegrin domain. PMID:27420095

  11. BnSP-7 toxin, a basic phospholipase A2 from Bothrops pauloensis snake venom, interferes with proliferation, ultrastructure and infectivity of Leishmania (Leishmania) amazonensis.

    PubMed

    Nunes, Débora C O; Figueira, Márcia M N R; Lopes, Daiana S; De Souza, Dayane L Naves; Izidoro, Luiz Fernando M; Ferro, Eloísa A V; Souza, Maria A; Rodrigues, Renata S; Rodrigues, Veridiana M; Yoneyama, Kelly A G

    2013-06-01

    This paper reports the effects of BnSP-7 toxin, a catalytically inactive phospholipase A2 from Bothrops pauloensis snake venom, on Leishmania (Leishmania) amazonensis. BnSP-7 presented activity against promastigote parasite forms both in the MTT assay, with IC50 of 58.7 μg mL(-1) of toxin, and a growth curve, inhibiting parasite proliferation 60-70% at concentrations of 50-200 μg mL(-1) of toxin 96 h after treatment. Also, the toxin presented effects on amastigotes, reducing parasite viability by 50% at 28.1 μg mL(-1) and delaying the amastigote-promastigote differentiation process. Ultrastructural studies showed that BnSP-7 caused severe morphological changes in promastigotes such as mitochondrial swelling, nuclear alteration, vacuolization, acidocalcisomes, multiflagellar aspects and a blebbing effect in the plasma membrane. Finally, BnSP-7 interfered with the infective capacity of promastigotes in murine peritoneal macrophages, causing statistically significant infectivity-index reductions (P < 0.05) of 20-35%. These data suggest that the BnSP-7 toxin is an important tool for the discovery of new parasite targets that can be exploited to develop new drugs for treating leishmaniasis. PMID:23442579

  12. Divergent functional profiles of acidic and basic phospholipases A2 in the venom of the snake Porthidium lansbergii lansbergii.

    PubMed

    Jiménez-Charris, Eliécer; Montealegre-Sánchez, Leonel; Solano-Redondo, Luis; Castro-Herrera, Fernando; Fierro-Pérez, Leonardo; Lomonte, Bruno

    2016-09-01

    The Lansberg's hognose pitviper, Porthidium lansbergii lansbergii, inhabits northern Colombia. A recent proteomic characterization of its venom (J. Proteomics [2015] 114, 287-299) revealed the presence of phospholipases A2 (PLA2) accounting for 16.2% of its proteins. The two most abundant PLA2s were biochemically and functionally characterized. Pllans-I is a basic, dimeric enzyme with a monomer mass of 14,136 Da, while Pllans-II is an acidic, monomeric enzyme of 13,901 Da. Both have Asp49 in their partial amino acid sequences and, accordingly, are catalytically active upon natural or synthetic substrates. Nevertheless, these two enzymes differ markedly in their bioactivities. Pllans-I induces myonecrosis, edema, and is lethal by intracerebro-ventricular injection in mice, as well as cytolytic and anticoagulant in vitro. In contrast, Pllans-II is devoid of these effects, except for the induction of a moderate edema. In spite of lacking myotoxicity, Pllans-II enhances the muscle damaging action of Pllans-I in vivo. Altogether, results further illustrate the divergent functional profiles of basic and acidic PLA2s in viperid venoms, and suggest that Pllans-I plays a myotoxic role in envenomings by P. l. lansbergii, whereas Pllans-II, apparently devoid of toxicity, enhances muscle damage caused by Pllans-I. PMID:27381371

  13. Assessing the utility of the Oxford Nanopore MinION for snake venom gland cDNA sequencing.

    PubMed

    Hargreaves, Adam D; Mulley, John F

    2015-01-01

    Portable DNA sequencers such as the Oxford Nanopore MinION device have the potential to be truly disruptive technologies, facilitating new approaches and analyses and, in some cases, taking sequencing out of the lab and into the field. However, the capabilities of these technologies are still being revealed. Here we show that single-molecule cDNA sequencing using the MinION accurately characterises venom toxin-encoding genes in the painted saw-scaled viper, Echis coloratus. We find the raw sequencing error rate to be around 12%, improved to 0-2% with hybrid error correction and 3% with de novo error correction. Our corrected data provides full coding sequences and 5' and 3' UTRs for 29 of 33 candidate venom toxins detected, far superior to Illumina data (13/40 complete) and Sanger-based ESTs (15/29). We suggest that, should the current pace of improvement continue, the MinION will become the default approach for cDNA sequencing in a variety of species. PMID:26623194

  14. Assessing the utility of the Oxford Nanopore MinION for snake venom gland cDNA sequencing

    PubMed Central

    Hargreaves, Adam D.

    2015-01-01

    Portable DNA sequencers such as the Oxford Nanopore MinION device have the potential to be truly disruptive technologies, facilitating new approaches and analyses and, in some cases, taking sequencing out of the lab and into the field. However, the capabilities of these technologies are still being revealed. Here we show that single-molecule cDNA sequencing using the MinION accurately characterises venom toxin-encoding genes in the painted saw-scaled viper, Echis coloratus. We find the raw sequencing error rate to be around 12%, improved to 0–2% with hybrid error correction and 3% with de novo error correction. Our corrected data provides full coding sequences and 5′ and 3′ UTRs for 29 of 33 candidate venom toxins detected, far superior to Illumina data (13/40 complete) and Sanger-based ESTs (15/29). We suggest that, should the current pace of improvement continue, the MinION will become the default approach for cDNA sequencing in a variety of species. PMID:26623194

  15. A preliminary survey of Hong Kong snake shops and the potential snake bite risks for the healthcare system.

    PubMed

    Wong, Oi-Fung; Hin-Tat, Fung; Shing-Kit-Tommy, Lam; Ka-Keung, Lam; Chak-Wah, Kam; Simpson, Ian D

    2009-09-01

    Consumption of snakes is a traditional part of Chinese life. Snake shops, which provide both the food products and live snakes to the public, are believed by the medical community to stock only local species. The medical risk posed by these live snakes is therefore regarded as manageable as they are indigenous and thus effective anti-snake venom (ASV) is believed to be available. This study visited four snake shops, reviewed the snakes present and interviewed the vendors regarding the snakes' likely geographical origin. Snakes species were definitively identified and, in addition, the current stocking of ASV by hospitals in terms of amount and species covered was determined. Snakes were also examined to determine whether they had been de-fanged and thus rendered unable to inflict a venomous bite. The study identified that non-indigenous species are being imported, capable of delivering a venomous bite, which provide a tangible medical risk as ASV is not available to deal with envenomations.

  16. Moojenactivase, a novel pro-coagulant PIIId metalloprotease isolated from Bothrops moojeni snake venom, activates coagulation factors II and X and induces tissue factor up-regulation in leukocytes.

    PubMed

    Sartim, Marco A; Costa, Tassia R; Laure, Helen J; Espíndola, Milena S; Frantz, Fabiani G; Sorgi, Carlos A; Cintra, Adélia C O; Arantes, Eliane C; Faccioli, Lucia H; Rosa, José C; Sampaio, Suely V

    2016-05-01

    Coagulopathies following snakebite are triggered by pro-coagulant venom toxins, in which metalloproteases play a major role in envenomation-induced coagulation disorders by acting on coagulation cascade, platelet function and fibrinolysis. Considering this relevance, here we describe the isolation and biochemical characterization of moojenactivase (MooA), a metalloprotease from Bothrops moojeni snake venom, and investigate its involvement in hemostasis in vitro. MooA is a glycoprotein of 85,746.22 Da, member of the PIIId group of snake venom metalloproteases, composed of three linked disulfide-bonded chains: an N-glycosylated heavy chain, and two light chains. The venom protease induced human plasma clotting in vitro by activating on both blood coagulation factors II (prothrombin) and X, which in turn generated α-thrombin and factor Xa, respectively. Additionally, MooA induced expression of tissue factor (TF) on the membrane surface of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC), which led these cells to adopt pro-coagulant characteristics. MooA was also shown to be involved with production of the inflammatory mediators TNF-α, IL-8 and MCP-1, suggesting an association between MooA pro-inflammatory stimulation of PBMC and TF up-regulation. We also observed aggregation of washed platelets when in presence of MooA; however, the protease had no effect on fibrinolysis. Our findings show that MooA is a novel hemostatically active metalloprotease, which may lead to the development of coagulopathies during B. moojeni envenomation. Moreover, the metalloprotease may contribute to the development of new diagnostic tools and pharmacological approaches applied to hemostatic disorders. PMID:26026608

  17. Purification and characterization of two acidic phospholipase A2 enzymes from king cobra (Ophiophagus hannah) snake venom.

    PubMed

    Tan, N H; Saifuddin, M N

    1990-01-01

    1. The two major phospholipase A2 enzymes (OHPLA-DE1 and OHPLA-DE2) of king cobra (Ophiophagus hannah) venom have been purified to electrophoretic homogeneity. 2. The isoelectric points of OHPLA-DE1 and OHPLA-DE2 were 3.81 and 3.89, respectively and the Mws were 14,000 and 15,000, respectively, as estimated by Sephadex G-75 gel filtration chromatography; and 14,000 as estimated by SDS-PAGE. 3. The enzymes were not lethal to mice at a dosage of 10 micrograms/g body wt by i.v. route. Both phospholipase A2 enzymes, however, exhibited moderate edema-inducing and anti-coagulant activities. 4. Bromophenacylation of the enzymes reduced the enzymatic activity drastically but did not affect the edema-inducing activity of the enzymes.

  18. Critical role of TLR2 and MyD88 for functional response of macrophages to a group IIA-secreted phospholipase A2 from snake venom.

    PubMed

    Leiguez, Elbio; Giannotti, Karina Cristina; Moreira, Vanessa; Matsubara, Márcio Hideki; Gutiérrez, José María; Lomonte, Bruno; Rodríguez, Juan Pablo; Balsinde, Jesús; Teixeira, Catarina

    2014-01-01

    The snake venom MT-III is a group IIA secreted phospholipase A2 (sPLA2) enzyme with functional and structural similarities with mammalian pro-inflammatory sPLA2s of the same group. Previously, we demonstrated that MT-III directly activates the innate inflammatory response of macrophages, including release of inflammatory mediators and formation of lipid droplets (LDs). However, the mechanisms coordinating these processes remain unclear. In the present study, by using TLR2-/- or MyD88-/- or C57BL/6 (WT) male mice, we report that TLR2 and MyD88 signaling have a critical role in MT-III-induced inflammatory response in macrophages. MT-III caused a marked release of PGE2, PGD2, PGJ2, IL-1β and IL-10 and increased the number of LDs in WT macrophages. In MT-III-stimulated TLR2-/- macrophages, formation of LDs and release of eicosanoids and cytokines were abrogated. In MyD88-/- macrophages, MT-III-induced release of PGE2, IL-1β and IL-10 was abrogated, but release of PGD2 and PGJ2 was maintained. In addition, COX-2 protein expression seen in MT-III-stimulated WT macrophages was abolished in both TLR2-/- and MyD88-/- cells, while perilipin 2 expression was abolished only in MyD88-/- cells. We further demonstrated a reduction of saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids and a release of the TLR2 agonists palmitic and oleic acid from MT-III-stimulated WT macrophages compared with WT control cells, thus suggesting these fatty acids as major messengers for MT-III-induced engagement of TLR2/MyD88 signaling. Collectively, our findings identify for the first time a TLR2 and MyD88-dependent mechanism that underlies group IIA sPLA2-induced inflammatory response in macrophages. PMID:24718259

  19. Tenascin-C promotes healing of Habu-snake venom-induced glomerulonephritis: studies in knockout congenic mice and in culture.

    PubMed Central

    Nakao, N.; Hiraiwa, N.; Yoshiki, A.; Ike, F.; Kusakabe, M.

    1998-01-01

    Mice without the gene for tenascin-C, a multifunctional extracellular matrix protein expressed in many important biological events, including wound healing, did not show any phenotype. However, it is now obvious that the phenotype of deletion of one gene frequently depends on the genetic background. Therefore, we have newly generated tenascin-C knockout mice (KO) by backcrossing original KO into three congenic lines: C57BL/6N, BALB/cA, and GRS/A (GR). And we investigated the disease course of reversible kidney injury, Habu-snake venom-induced proliferative glomerulonephritis. In all strains, the disease was more severe in KO, but the severity varied with the strain. The KO-GR showed irreversibility; all treated KO-GR died by the 4th month due to renal failure. The diseased KO-GR showed abnormal regenerative reactions, including reduced proliferation of mesangial cells, key players in glomerulonephritis, and reduced production of some kinds of cytokines and matrices, leading to poor formation of granulation tissue. In culture, the mesangial cells from the KO-GR had the same potential for proliferation and response to cytokines as controls, but interestingly, to achieve this potential, they required contact with tenascin-C. These reactions were blocked by an anti-tenascin monoclonal antibody. The results of the present study, the first report showing the most dramatic phenotype so far discovered, have strongly suggested the importance of tenascin-C in the resolution of the renal inflammation and that of the genetic background on which the KO was developed. Images Figure 2 Figure 5 PMID:9588892

  20. CoaTx-II, a new dimeric Lys49 phospholipase A2 from Crotalus oreganus abyssus snake venom with bactericidal potential: Insights into its structure and biological roles.

    PubMed

    Almeida, J R; Lancellotti, M; Soares, A M; Calderon, L A; Ramírez, D; González, W; Marangoni, S; Da Silva, S L

    2016-09-15

    Snake venoms are rich and intriguing sources of biologically-active molecules that act on target cells, modulating a diversity of physiological functions and presenting promising pharmacological applications. Lys49 phospholipase A2 is one of the multifunctional proteins present in these complex secretions and, although catalytically inactive, has a variety of biological activities, including cytotoxic, antibacterial, inflammatory, antifungal activities. Herein, a Lys49 phospholipase A2, denominated CoaTx-II from Crotalus oreganus abyssus, was purified and structurally and pharmacologically characterized. CoaTx-II was isolated with a high degree of purity by a combination of two chromatographic steps; molecular exclusion and reversed-phase high performance liquid chromatography. This toxin is dimeric with a mass of 13868.2 Da (monomeric form), as determined by mass spectrometry. CoaTx-II is rich in Arg and Lys residues and displays high identity with other Lys49 PLA2 homologues, which have high isoelectric points. The structural model of dimeric CoaTx-II shows that the toxin is non-covalently stabilized. Despite its enzymatic inactivity, in vivo CoaTx-II caused local muscular damage, characterized by increased plasma creatine kinase and confirmed by histological alterations, in addition to an inflammatory activity, as demonstrated by mice paw edema induction and pro-inflammatory cytokine IL-6 elevation. CoaTx-II also presents antibacterial activity against gram negative (Pseudomonas aeruginosa 31NM, Escherichia coli ATCC 25922) and positive (Staphyloccocus aureus BEC9393 and Rib1) bacteria. Therefore, data show that this newly purified toxin plays a central role in mediating the degenerative events associated with envenomation, in addition to demonstrating antibacterial properties, with potential for use in the development of strategies for antivenom therapy and combating antibiotic-resistant bacteria. PMID:27530662