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Sample records for bracken toxin ptaquiloside

  1. Ptaquiloside in Irish Bracken Ferns and Receiving Waters, with Implications for Land Managers.

    PubMed

    O'Driscoll, Connie; Ramwell, Carmel; Harhen, Brendan; Morrison, Liam; Clauson-Kaas, Frederik; Hansen, Hans Christian B; Campbell, Graeme; Sheahan, Jerome; Misstear, Bruce; Xiao, Liwen

    2016-04-26

    Ptaquiloside, along with other natural phytotoxins, is receiving increased attention from scientists and land use managers. There is an urgent need to increase empirical evidence to understand the scale of phytotoxin mobilisation and potential to enter into the environment. In this study the risk of ptaquiloside to drinking water was assessed by quantifying ptaquiloside in the receiving waters at three drinking water abstraction sites across Ireland and in bracken fronds surrounding the abstraction sites. We also investigated the impact of different management regimes (spraying, cutting and rolling) on ptaquiloside concentrations at plot-scale in six locations in Northern Ireland, UK. Ptaquiloside concentrations were determined using recent advances in the use of LC-MS for the detection and quantification of ptaquiloside. The results indicate that ptaquiloside is present in bracken stands surrounding drinking water abstractions in Ireland, and ptaquiloside concentrations were also observed in the receiving waters. Furthermore, spraying was found to be the most effective bracken management regime observed in terms of reducing ptaquiloside load. Increased awareness is vital on the implications of managing land with extensive bracken stands.

  2. Ptaquiloside, the major carcinogen of bracken fern, in the pooled raw milk of healthy sheep and goats: an underestimated, global concern of food safety.

    PubMed

    Virgilio, Antonella; Sinisi, Annamaria; Russo, Valeria; Gerardo, Salvatore; Santoro, Adriano; Galeone, Aldo; Taglialatela-Scafati, Orazio; Roperto, Franco

    2015-05-20

    Bracken fern (Pteridium aquilinum) is a worldwide plant containing toxic substances, which represent an important chemical hazard for animals, including humans. Ptaquiloside, 1, a norsesquiterpenoid glucoside, is the major carcinogen of bracken detected in the food chain, particularly in the milk from farm animals. To date, ptaquiloside has been shown in the milk of cows feeding on a diet containing bracken fern. This is the first study that shows the systematic detection of ptaquiloside, 1, and reports its direct quantitation in pooled raw milk of healthy sheep and goats grazing on bracken. Ptaquiloside, 1, was detected by a sensitive method based on the chemical conversion of ptaquiloside, 1, into bromopterosine, 4, following gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) analysis. The presence of ptaquiloside, 1, possibly carcinogenic to humans, in the milk of healthy animals is an unknown potential health risk, thus representing a harmful and potential global concern of food safety.

  3. Land management of bracken needs to account for bracken carcinogens--a case study from Britain.

    PubMed

    Rasmussen, Lars Holm; Donnelly, Eric; Strobel, Bjarne W; Holm, Peter E; Hansen, Hans Christian Bruun

    2015-03-15

    Bracken ferns are some of the most widespread ferns in the World causing immense problems for land managers, foresters and rangers. Bracken is suspected of causing cancer in Humans due to its content of the carcinogen ptaquiloside. Ingestion of bracken, or food and drinking water contaminated with ptaquiloside may be the cause. The aim of this study was to monitor the content of ptaquiloside in 20 bracken stands from Britain to obtain a better understanding of the ptaquiloside dynamics and to evaluate the environmental implications of using different cutting regimes in bracken management. The ptaquiloside content in fronds ranged between 50 and 5790 μg/g corresponding to a ptaquiloside load in the standing biomass of up to 590 mg/m(2) in mature fronds. Ptaquiloside was also found in the underground rhizome system (11-657 μg/g) and in decaying litter (0.1-5.8 μg/g). The amount of ptaquiloside present in bracken stands at any given time is difficult to predict and did not show any correlations with edaphic growth factors. The content of ptaquiloside turned out to be higher in fronds emerging after cutting compared to uncut fronds. Environmental risk assessment and bracken management must therefore be based on actual and site specific determinations of the ptaquiloside content. Care must be taken to avoid leaching from cut ferns to aquifers and other recipients and appropriate precautionary measures must be taken to protect staff from exposure to bracken dust. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Ptaquiloside from bracken in stream water at base flow and during storm events.

    PubMed

    Clauson-Kaas, Frederik; Ramwell, Carmel; Hansen, Hans Chr B; Strobel, Bjarne W

    2016-12-01

    The bracken fern (Pteridium spp.) densely populates both open and woodland vegetation types around the globe. Bracken is toxic to livestock when consumed, and a group of potent illudane-type carcinogens have been identified, of which the compound ptaquiloside (PTA) is the most abundant. The highly water soluble PTA has been shown to be leachable from bracken fronds, and present in the soil and water below bracken stands. This has raised concerns over whether the compound might pose a risk to drinking water sources. We investigated PTA concentrations in a small stream draining a bracken-infested catchment at base flow and in response to storm events during a growth season, and included sampling of the bracken canopy throughfall. Streams in other bracken-dominated areas were also sampled at base flow for comparison, and a controlled pulse experiment was conducted in the field to study the in-stream dynamics of PTA. Ptaquiloside concentrations in the stream never exceeded 61 ng L -1 in the base flow samples, but peaked at 2.2 μg L -1 during the studied storm events. The mass of PTA in the stream, per storm event, was 7.5-93 mg from this catchment. A clear temporal connection was observed between rainfall and PTA concentration in the stream, with a reproducible time lag of approx. 1 h from onset of rain to elevated concentrations, and returning rather quickly (about 2 h) to base flow concentration levels. The concentration of PTA behaved similar to an inert tracer (Cl - ) in the pulse experiment over a relative short time scale (minutes-hours) reflecting no PTA sorption, and dispersion and dilution considerably lowered the observed PTA concentrations downstream. Bracken throughfall revealed a potent and lasting source of PTA during rainfall, with concentrations up to 169 μg L -1 , that did not decrease over the course of the event. In the stream, the throughfall contribution to PTA cannot be separated from a possible below-ground input from litter, rhizomes

  5. Human gastric cancer, Helicobacter pylori and bracken carcinogens: A connecting hypothesis.

    PubMed

    Oliveros-Bastidas, Alberto; Calcagno-Pissarelli, María Pía; Naya, Marlene; Ávila-Núñez, Jorge Luis; Alonso-Amelot, Miguel E

    2016-03-01

    Long term infection of Helicobacter pylori (Hp) virulent strains is a key factor in the genesis of human gastric cancer, and so are certain dietary proinflammatory and genotoxic compounds. Carcinogenic bracken fern (Pteridium spp.) is one of these. Toxins from this plant are consumed as bracken culinary preparations, through milk and meat of bracken-exposed livestock, and drain waters from bracken swards. Bracken toxin ptaquiloside (PtQ), a suspected human carcinogen, elicits complex responses in animals leading to death. PtQ and Hp might cooperate in gastric pathologies. This paper presents an hypothesis on PtQ-Hp association leading to the enhancement of carcinogenesis in the human gastric environment that might explain the high gastric cancer incidence and death rates among Hp-infected people living in bracken zones at two levels: (1) The macroscopic scale comprising the flow of PtQ in the human diet. (2) the microscopic scale encompassing (A) gastric luminal medium; (B) gastric mucus structure and mucin degradation elicited by Hp; (C) bacterial pH gradient modification of the gastric mucosa that favors PtQ survival and its penetration into epithelial tissue; (D) combined PtQ/Hp effects on gastric immune and inflammatory responses; (E) PtQ-Hp complementary activity at selected cell signaling cascades and genome disturbance. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. UPLC-MS/MS determination of ptaquiloside and pterosin B in preserved natural water.

    PubMed

    Clauson-Kaas, Frederik; Hansen, Hans Christian Bruun; Strobel, Bjarne W

    2016-11-01

    The naturally occurring carcinogen ptaquiloside and its degradation product pterosin B are found in water leaching from bracken stands. The objective of this work is to present a new sample preservation method and a fast UPLC-MS/MS method for quantification of ptaquiloside and pterosin B in environmental water samples, employing a novel internal standard. A faster, reliable, and efficient method was developed for isolation of high purity ptaquiloside and pterosin B from plant material for use as analytical standards, with purity verified by 1 H-NMR. The chemical analysis was performed by cleanup and preconcentration of samples with solid phase extraction, before analyte quantification with UPLC-MS/MS. By including gradient elution and optimizing the liquid chromatography mobile phase buffer system, a total run cycle of 5 min was achieved, with method detection limits, including preconcentration, of 8 and 4 ng/L for ptaquiloside and pterosin B, respectively. The use of loganin as internal standard improved repeatability of the determination of both analytes, though it could not be employed for sample preparation. Buffering raw water samples in situ with ammonium acetate to pH ∼5.5 decisively increased sample integrity at realistic transportation and storing conditions prior to extraction. Groundwater samples collected in November 2015 at the shallow water table below a Danish bracken stand were preserved and analyzed using the above methods, and PTA concentrations of 3.8 ± 0.24 μg/L (±sd, n = 3) were found, much higher than previously reported. Graphical abstract Workflow overview of ptaquiloside determination.

  7. Degradation kinetics of ptaquiloside in soil and soil solution.

    PubMed

    Ovesen, Rikke Gleerup; Rasmussen, Lars Holm; Hansen, Hans Christian Bruun

    2008-02-01

    Ptaquiloside (PTA) is a carcinogenic norsesquiterpene glycoside produced in bracken (Pteridium aquilinum (L.) Kuhn), a widespread, aggressive weed. Transfer of PTA to soil and soil solution eventually may contaminate groundwater and surface water. Degradation rates of PTA were quantified in soil and soil solutions in sandy and clayey soils subjected to high natural PTA loads from bracken stands. Degradation kinetics in moist soil could be fitted with the sum of a fast and a slow first-order reaction; the fast reaction contributed 20 to 50% of the total degradation of PTA. The fast reaction was similar in all horizons, with the rate constant k(1F) ranging between 0.23 and 1.5/h. The slow degradation, with the rate constant k(1S) ranging between 0.00067 and 0.029/ h, was more than twice as fast in topsoils compared to subsoils, which is attributable to higher microbial activity in topsoils. Experiments with sterile controls confirmed that nonmicrobial degradation processes constituted more than 90% of the fast degradation and 50% of the slow degradation. The lower nonmicrobial degradation rate observed in the clayey compared with the sandy soil is attributed to a stabilizing effect of PTA by clay silicates. Ptaquiloside appeared to be stable in all soil solutions, in which no degradation was observed within a period of 28 d, in strong contrast to previous studies of hydrolysis rates in artificial aqueous electrolytes. The present study predicts that the risk of PTA leaching is controlled mainly by the residence time of pore water in soil, soil microbial activity, and content of organic matter and clay silicates.

  8. Occurrence and fate of the norsesquiterpene glucoside ptaquiloside (PTA) in soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zaccone, Claudio; Cavoski, Ivana; Costi, Roberta; Sarais, Giorgia; Caboni, Pierluigi; Miano, Teodoro M.; Lattanzio, Vincenzo

    2014-05-01

    The bracken fern Pteridium aquilinum (L.) Kuhn, one of the most common plant species on Earth, produces a wide range of secondary metabolites including the norsesquiterpene glucoside ptaquiloside (PTA). This bracken constituent causes acute poisoning, blindness and cancer in animals, and can be transferred to man when bracken is utilized as food. Also milk from cows eating bracken is thought to be the vector for the transfer of PTA to humans, as well as PTA-contaminated drinking waters. Although some studies on the effect of growth conditions and soil properties on the production and mobility of PTA have been carried out (mainly in the North of Europe), results are sometimes conflicting and further investigations are needed. The aim of the present work is to study the occurrence and the fate of PTA in soils showing different physico-chemical features, collected in different pedoclimatic areas (from the South of Italy), but having the extensive ("wild") livestock farming as common denominator. The PTA content was determined in both soil and fern samples by GC-MS; both the extraction protocol and recovery were previously tested through incubation studies. Soils samples were also characterizes from the physical and chemical point of view (pH, EC, texture, total carbonates, cation exchange capacity, organic C, total N, available nutrients and heavy metal concentration) in order to correlate the possible influence of soil parameters on PTA production, occurrence and mobility. PTA concentration in soil samples was always

  9. Bracken fern poisoning

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Bracken fern (Pteridium aquilinum) is found throughout the world and enzootic hematuria, bright blindness, and bracken staggers. This chapter reviews the plant, the various poisoning syndrome that it produces, the current strategies to prevent poisoning, and recommended treatments....

  10. Bracken fern poisoning

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Bracken fern (Pteridium aquilinum) has worldwide distribution and in some areas dominated plant communities replacing desirable forages. Poisoning is identified as enzootic hematuria, bright blindness, and bracken staggers. This chapter reviews updates new information on the plant, the various poi...

  11. Detection of Ptaquilosides in different phenologic stages of Bracken fern (Pteridium aquilinum) and analysis of milk samples in farms with hematuria in Tolima, Colombia

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Bracken fern or “Helecho Macho” (Pteridium aquilinum) is one of the most common weeds in the meadows of the mountain ranges of Colombia. Consumption of this palatable plant by bovines causes a disease known as bovine enzootic hematuria and esophageal neoplasia. The toxic effect of the plant in bovin...

  12. Gastric cancer in Gwynedd. Possible links with bracken.

    PubMed Central

    Galpin, O. P.; Whitaker, C. J.; Whitaker, R.; Kassab, J. Y.

    1990-01-01

    One hundred and one histologically confirmed gastric cancer patients in Gwynedd, North Wales, were matched by sex, age and social class to two hospital inpatients without cancer. Seventy-seven of the gastric cancer cases were also matched, using the same criteria, to a patient with a confirmed cancer of a different site (excluding oesophagus). A questionnaire was used to determine bracken exposure and source of water in childhood. Residential and occupational histories were obtained and the consumption of buttermilk, a potential vector of the bracken carcinogens, was quantified. Comparison of the gastric cancer patients with the non-cancer controls indicated that exposure to bracken in childhood had an increased risk (RR = 2.34, P less than 0.001) compared to no exposure and that length of residence in Gwynedd was associated with increased risk (RR = 2.46 for durations of 61 years and over, P less than 0.01). Consumption of buttermilk in childhood and adulthood was attended by increased risk (RR = 1.61 and 1.86 respectively, the latter being statistically significant, P less than 0.05). Neither the residence effect nor consumption of buttermilk in adulthood remained significant when considered in a multivariate analysis with bracken exposure. PMID:2337510

  13. Changes in soil solution chemistry of Andisols following invasion by bracken fern

    Treesearch

    J. L. Johnson-Maynard; P. A. McDaniel; D. E. Ferguson; A. L. Falen

    1998-01-01

    Disturbed areas within the Grand Fir Mosaic (GFM) ecosystem of northern Idaho show little to no natural conifer regeneration. Clear-cut sites are invaded quickly by bracken fern successional communities and seem to be in an arrested state of secondary succession. This study compared the soil solution composition of Andisols supporting bracken fern successional...

  14. Ptaquiloside reduces NK cell activities by enhancing metallothionein expression, which is prevented by selenium

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Pteridium aquilinum, one of the most important poisonous plants in the world, is known to be carcinogenic to animals and humans. Moreover, our previous studies showed that the immunosuppressive effects of ptaquiloside, its main toxic agent, were prevented by selenium in mouse natural killer (NK) cel...

  15. Lignin signatures show the effects of changes in heather and bracken cover on the composition of organic matter in a moorland soil profile.

    PubMed

    Hetherington, S L; Anderson, J M

    1998-11-01

    Bracken (Pteridium aquilinum) is aggressively displacing heather (Calluna vulgaris) on many moorlands in Britain. We investigated the use of lignin derivatives to identify the distribution of soil organic matter (SOM) derived from bracken in moorland soil profiles formed under heather. Phenylpropanoids extracted from recently senesced litters, roots and SOM, using alkaline CuO oxidation, showed distinct signatures for bracken and heather, with vanillyl moieties dominating bracken litter extracts and vanillyl and syringyl dominating heather litter extracts. Ratios of vanillyl and syringyl concentrations characterised the SOM derived from heather and bracken better than the concentrations of the individual moieties. The analysis showed up to a depth of 5 cm under pure bracken cover, and at the interface between heather and bracken, the SOM was largely derived from bracken litter but below that depth SOM was apparently derived from heather. The use of these methods to identify the plant origin of SOM not only enables understanding the effects of changing vegetation cover on organic matter dynamics in moorland soils but could also facilitate management techniques in moorland/heathland restoration which involve the removal of comparatively nutrient-rich SOM derived from bracken.

  16. Ptaquiloside in Pteridium aquilinum subsp. aquilinum and corresponding soils from the South of Italy: influence of physical and chemical features of soils on its occurrence.

    PubMed

    Zaccone, Claudio; Cavoski, Ivana; Costi, Roberta; Sarais, Giorgia; Caboni, Pierluigi; Traversa, Andreina; Miano, Teodoro M

    2014-10-15

    The bracken fern Pteridium aquilinum (L.) Kuhn, one of the most common plant species on Earth, produces a wide range of secondary metabolites including the norsesquiterpene glucoside ptaquiloside (PTA). Several studies are present in literature about eco-toxicological aspects related to PTA, whereas results about the effect of growth conditions and soil properties on the production and mobility of PTA are sometimes conflicting and further investigations are needed. The aim of the present work is to investigate the occurrence and possible fate of PTA in soils showing different physical and chemical features, and collected in several areas of the South of Italy. The PTA content was determined in both soil and fern samples by GC-MS; both the extraction protocol and recovery were previously tested through incubation studies. Soils samples were also characterized from the physical and chemical points of view in order to correlate the possible influence of soil parameters on PTA production and occurrence. PTA concentration in P. aquilinum fern seemed to be significantly affected by the availability of nutrients (mainly P) and soil pH. At the same time, PTA concentration in soil samples was always undetectable, independent of the PTA concentration in the corresponding Pteridium samples and pedo-climatic conditions. This seems to suggest the degradation of the PTA by indigenous soil microbial community, whereas incubation studies underlined a certain affinity of PTA for both organic colloids and clay/silt particles. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. The effect of nitrogen additions on bracken fern and its insect herbivores at sites with high and low atmospheric pollution

    Treesearch

    M.E. Jones; M.E. Fenn; T.D. Paine

    2011-01-01

    The impact of atmospheric pollution, including nitrogen deposition, on bracken fern herbivores has never been studied. Bracken fern is globally distributed and has a high potential to accumulate nitrogen in plant tissue. We examined the response of bracken fern and its herbivores to N fertilization at a high and low pollution site in forests downwind of Los Angeles,...

  18. The Effectiveness of Asulam for Bracken ( Pteridium aquilinum) Control in the United Kingdom: A Meta-Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stewart, Gavin B.; Pullin, Andrew S.; Tyler, Claire

    2007-11-01

    Bracken ( Pteridium aquilinum) is a major problem for livestock-based extensive agriculture, conservation, recreation, and game management globally. It is an invasive species often achieving dominance to the detriment of other species. Control is essential to maintain plant communities such as grassland and lowland heath or if extensive grazing by domestic stock, particularly sheep, is to be viable on upland margins. Bracken is managed primarily by herbicide application or cutting but other techniques including rolling, burning, and grazing are also utilized. Here we evaluate the evidence regarding the effectiveness of asulam for the control of bracken. Thirteen studies provided data for meta-analyses which demonstrate that application of the herbicide asulam reduces bracken abundance. Subgroup analyses indicate that the number of treatments had an important impact, with multiple follow-up treatments more effective than one or two treatments. Management practices should reflect the requirement for repeated follow-up. There is insufficient available experimental evidence for quantitative analysis of the effectiveness of other management interventions, although this results from lack of reporting in papers where cutting and comparisons of cutting and asulam application are concerned. Systematic searching and meta-analytical synthesis have effectively demonstrated the limits of current knowledge, based on recorded empirical evidence, and increasing the call for more rigorous monitoring of bracken control techniques. Lack of experimental evidence on the effectiveness of management such as rolling or grazing with hardy cattle breeds contrasts with the widespread acceptance of their use through dissemination of experience.

  19. Spanish Translation and Validation of the Bracken Basic Concept Scale.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bracken, Bruce A; Fouad, Nadya

    1987-01-01

    The Bracken Basic Concept Scale (BBCS) was translated into Spanish, and 32 preschool and primary age bilingual children were assessed in a counter-balanced format with the English and newly translated Spanish forms to assess the adequacy of the translation. Preliminary content validity of the Spanish BBCS was demonstrated. (Author/JAZ)

  20. Organochlorine insecticide residues in the free-tailed bat (Tadarida brasiliensis) at Bracken Cave, Texas

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, D.R.; Martin, C.O.; Swineford, D.M.

    1975-01-01

    Fifty-nine free-tailed bats (Tadarida brasiliensis mexicana ) were collected at Bracken Cave, Texas, and analyzed for organochlorine insecticides and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). Residues of DDE in the brain were greater in 12 young collected from the floor than in 15 young taken from the ceiling, but food deprivation, not higher residues in the brain, apparently caused young to fall....Among 18 pregnant females, residues of DDE and DDT were highest in yearlings. The first lactation by yearlings caused their residue loads to drop sharply. Thereafter, increasing age was accompanied by increasing residues but amounts generally did not exceed those in yearlings.....Residue levels in embryos were a function both of levels in the female parent and degree of embryonic development. Residues accumulated rapidly in nursing young, and lactating females may excrete from 1.3 to 16.2 (mean = 4.3) micrograms of DDE in milk per day. Maximum individual residue loads may be attained toward the end of nursing, and mobilization of these residues during southward migration may subject Bracken Cave free-tails to maximum lifetime residues in the brain....Comparison of our data with residue data for the free-tail population at Eagle Creek Cave (Arizona) in 1970 produced the following conclusions: ( 1) residues of DDE appeared similar in pregnant females, embryos, lactating females, and fallen young for the two populations; (2) residues of DDT and dieldrin appeared greater in pregnant females at Bracken Cave; (3) DDE and DDT occurred at greater levels in guano samples from Bracken Cave. On this basis, the population decline observed at Eagle Creek Cave between 1963 and 1969 does not appear to be related to the residues observed in the 1970 samples taken from that cave.

  1. Tree seed rain and seed removal, but not the seed bank, impede forest recovery in bracken (Pteridium aquilinum (L.) Kuhn)-dominated clearings in the African highlands.

    PubMed

    Ssali, Fredrick; Moe, Stein R; Sheil, Douglas

    2018-04-01

    Considerable areas dominated by bracken Pteridium aquilinum (L.) Kuhn occur worldwide and are associated with arrested forest recovery. How forest recovery is impeded in these areas remains poorly understood, especially in the African highlands. The component processes that can lead to recruitment limitation-including low seed arrival, availability and persistence-are important determinants of plant communities and offer a potential explanation for bracken persistence. We investigated key processes that can contribute to recruitment limitation in bracken-dominated clearings in the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda. We examined if differences in seed rain (dispersal limitation), soil seed bank, or seed removal (seed viability and persistence) can, individually or in combination, explain the differences in tree regeneration found between bracken-dominated areas and the neighboring forest. These processes were assessed along ten 50-m transects crossing the forest-bracken boundary. When compared to the neighboring forest, bracken clearings had fewer seedlings (bracken 11,557 ± 5482 vs. forest 34,515 ± 6066 seedlings/ha), lower seed rain (949 ± 582 vs. 1605 ± 335 tree seeds m -2  year -1 ), comparable but sparse soil seed bank (304 ± 236 vs. 264 ± 99 viable tree seeds/m 2 ), higher seed removal (70.1% ± 2.4% vs. 40.6% ± 2.4% over a 3-day interval), and markedly higher rodent densities (25.7 ± 5.4 vs. 5.0 ± 1.6 rodents per 100 trapping sessions). Camera traps revealed that rodents were the dominant animals visiting the seeds in our seed removal study. Synthesis : Recruitment limitation contributes to both the slow recovery of forest in bracken-dominated areas, and to the composition of the tree species that occur. Low seed arrival and low persistence of unburied seeds can both explain the reduced density of seedlings found in bracken versus neighboring forest. Seed removal, likely due to rodents, in particular appears sufficient to

  2. Validity of the Bracken School Readiness Assessment for Predicting First Grade Readiness

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Panter, Janet E.; Bracken, Bruce A.

    2009-01-01

    The Bracken School Readiness Assessment (BSRA) was administered to all kindergarten students enrolled in two rural elementary schools in the fall of 2004. Eight months later, the reading portion of the Metropolitan Readiness Tests, 6th Edition (MRT-6) was administered. Teachers were asked to indicate whether they had concerns about each student's…

  3. Detection and mapping the spatial distribution of bracken fern weeds using the Landsat 8 OLI new generation sensor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matongera, Trylee Nyasha; Mutanga, Onisimo; Dube, Timothy; Sibanda, Mbulisi

    2017-05-01

    Bracken fern is an invasive plant that presents serious environmental, ecological and economic problems around the world. An understanding of the spatial distribution of bracken fern weeds is therefore essential for providing appropriate management strategies at both local and regional scales. The aim of this study was to assess the utility of the freely available medium resolution Landsat 8 OLI sensor in the detection and mapping of bracken fern at the Cathedral Peak, South Africa. To achieve this objective, the results obtained from Landsat 8 OLI were compared with those derived using the costly, high spatial resolution WorldView-2 imagery. Since previous studies have already successfully mapped bracken fern using high spatial resolution WorldView-2 image, the comparison was done to investigate the magnitude of difference in accuracy between the two sensors in relation to their acquisition costs. To evaluate the performance of Landsat 8 OLI in discriminating bracken fern compared to that of Worldview-2, we tested the utility of (i) spectral bands; (ii) derived vegetation indices as well as (iii) the combination of spectral bands and vegetation indices based on discriminant analysis classification algorithm. After resampling the training and testing data and reclassifying several times (n = 100) based on the combined data sets, the overall accuracies for both Landsat 8 and WorldView-2 were tested for significant differences based on Mann-Whitney U test. The results showed that the integration of the spectral bands and derived vegetation indices yielded the best overall classification accuracy (80.08% and 87.80% for Landsat 8 OLI and WorldView-2 respectively). Additionally, the use of derived vegetation indices as a standalone data set produced the weakest overall accuracy results of 62.14% and 82.11% for both the Landsat 8 OLI and WorldView-2 images. There were significant differences {U (100) = 569.5, z = -10.8242, p < 0.01} between the classification accuracies

  4. Multinational Validation of the Spanish Bracken Basic Concept Scale for Cross-Cultural Assessments.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bracken, Bruce A.; And Others

    1990-01-01

    Investigated construct validity of the Spanish translation of the Bracken Basic Concept Scale (BBCS) in Latino children (n=293) including monolingual Spanish-speaking children from Puerto Rico and Venezuela and Spanish-dominant bilingual Latino children from Texas. Results provided support for construct validity of the Spanish version of the…

  5. Construct Validity Evidence for Bracken School Readiness Assessment, Third Edition, Spanish Form Scores

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ortiz, Arlene; Clinton, Amanda; Schaefer, Barbara A.

    2015-01-01

    Convergent and discriminant validity evidence was examined for scores on the Spanish Record Form of the Bracken School Readiness Assessment, Third Edition (BSRA-3). Participants included a sample of 68 Hispanic, Spanish-speaking children ages 4 to 5 years enrolled in preschool programs in Puerto Rico. Scores obtained from the BSRA-3 Spanish Record…

  6. Reliability of Bracken School Readiness Assessment, Third Edition Scores with Young Children in Mumbai, India

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shah, Mira B.; Schaefer, Barbara A.; Clark, Teresa P.

    2013-01-01

    To effectively provide early interventions to children, identifying those who are in need of these interventions is essential. In India, several problems hinder the process of early identification, including a lack of standardized measures for assessment. This study investigates the utility of the Bracken School Readiness Assessment, Third Edition…

  7. Immunological and functional comparison between Clostridium perfringens iota toxin, C. spiroforme toxin, and anthrax toxins.

    PubMed

    Perelle, S; Scalzo, S; Kochi, S; Mock, M; Popoff, M R

    1997-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens iota and C. spiroforme toxins consist of two separate proteins. One is the binding component and the other the enzymatic component. The two toxins secreted by Bacillus anthracis are composed of binary combinations of three proteins: protective antigen, lethal factor, and edema factor. As shown by Western blotting and ELISA, the binding component of anthrax toxin shares common epitopes with that of iota toxin and C. spiroforme toxin which are closely related immunologically. However, no functional complementation was observed between iota toxin and anthrax toxin components. The binding components can form toxins active on macrophages only in combination with their respective enzymatic components. Agents which prevent acidification of endosomes do not have the same effects on anthrax toxin activity as they do on iota and C. spiroforme toxins. Therefore, the mechanisms of entry into the cells are presumably different. Since the binding components of anthrax toxins and iota toxin share a conserved putative translocation domain, these binding components could have a common mode of insertion into the cell membranes.

  8. Targeted Silencing of Anthrax Toxin Receptors Protects against Anthrax Toxins*

    PubMed Central

    Arévalo, Maria T.; Navarro, Ashley; Arico, Chenoa D.; Li, Junwei; Alkhatib, Omar; Chen, Shan; Diaz-Arévalo, Diana; Zeng, Mingtao

    2014-01-01

    Anthrax spores can be aerosolized and dispersed as a bioweapon. Current postexposure treatments are inadequate at later stages of infection, when high levels of anthrax toxins are present. Anthrax toxins enter cells via two identified anthrax toxin receptors: tumor endothelial marker 8 (TEM8) and capillary morphogenesis protein 2 (CMG2). We hypothesized that host cells would be protected from anthrax toxins if anthrax toxin receptor expression was effectively silenced using RNA interference (RNAi) technology. Thus, anthrax toxin receptors in mouse and human macrophages were silenced using targeted siRNAs or blocked with specific antibody prior to challenge with anthrax lethal toxin. Viability assays were used to assess protection in macrophages treated with specific siRNA or antibody as compared with untreated cells. Silencing CMG2 using targeted siRNAs provided almost complete protection against anthrax lethal toxin-induced cytotoxicity and death in murine and human macrophages. The same results were obtained by prebinding cells with specific antibody prior to treatment with anthrax lethal toxin. In addition, TEM8-targeted siRNAs also offered significant protection against lethal toxin in human macrophage-like cells. Furthermore, silencing CMG2, TEM8, or both receptors in combination was also protective against MEK2 cleavage by lethal toxin or adenylyl cyclase activity by edema toxin in human kidney cells. Thus, anthrax toxin receptor-targeted RNAi has the potential to be developed as a life-saving, postexposure therapy against anthrax. PMID:24742682

  9. Epsilon toxin: a fascinating pore-forming toxin.

    PubMed

    Popoff, Michel R

    2011-12-01

    Epsilon toxin (ETX) is produced by strains of Clostridium perfringens classified as type B or type D. ETX belongs to the heptameric β-pore-forming toxins including aerolysin and Clostridium septicum alpha toxin, which are characterized by the formation of a pore through the plasma membrane of eukaryotic cells consisting in a β-barrel of 14 amphipatic β strands. By contrast to aerolysin and C. septicum alpha toxin, ETX is a much more potent toxin and is responsible for enterotoxemia in animals, mainly sheep. ETX induces perivascular edema in various tissues and accumulates in particular in the kidneys and brain, where it causes edema and necrotic lesions. ETX is able to pass through the blood-brain barrier and stimulate the release of glutamate, which accounts for the symptoms of nervous excitation observed in animal enterotoxemia. At the cellular level, ETX causes rapid swelling followed by cell death involving necrosis. The precise mode of action of ETX remains to be determined. ETX is a powerful toxin, however, it also represents a unique tool with which to vehicle drugs into the central nervous system or target glutamatergic neurons. © 2011 The Author Journal compilation © 2011 FEBS.

  10. Stool C difficile toxin

    MedlinePlus

    ... toxin; Colitis - toxin; Pseudomembranous - toxin; Necrotizing colitis - toxin; C difficile - toxin ... be analyzed. There are several ways to detect C difficile toxin in the stool sample. Enzyme immunoassay ( ...

  11. Inhibition of cholera toxin and other AB toxins by polyphenolic compounds

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    All AB-type protein toxins have intracellular targets despite an initial extracellular location. These toxins use different methods to reach the cytosol and have different effects on the target cell. Broad-spectrum inhibitors against AB toxins are therefore hard to develop because the toxins use dif...

  12. Binding of ATP by pertussis toxin and isolated toxin subunits

    SciTech Connect

    Hausman, S.Z.; Manclark, C.R.; Burns, D.L.

    1990-07-03

    The binding of ATP to pertussis toxin and its components, the A subunit and B oligomer, was investigated. Whereas, radiolabeled ATP bound to the B oligomer and pertussis toxin, no binding to the A subunit was observed. The binding of ({sup 3}H)ATP to pertussis toxin and the B oligomer was inhibited by nucleotides. The relative effectiveness of the nucleotides was shown to be ATP > GTP > CTP > TTP for pertussis toxin and ATP > GTP > TTP > CTP for the B oligomer. Phosphate ions inhibited the binding of ({sup 3}H)ATP to pertussis toxin in a competitive manner;more » however, the presence of phosphate ions was essential for binding of ATP to the B oligomer. The toxin substrate, NAD, did not affect the binding of ({sup 3}H)ATP to pertussis toxin, although the glycoprotein fetuin significantly decreased binding. These results suggest that the binding site for ATP is located on the B oligomer and is distinct from the enzymatically active site but may be located near the eukaryotic receptor binding site.« less

  13. Failure of botulinum toxin injection for neurogenic detrusor overactivity: Switch of toxin versus second injection of the same toxin.

    PubMed

    Peyronnet, Benoit; Castel-Lacanal, Evelyne; Manunta, Andréa; Roumiguié, Mathieu; Marque, Philippe; Rischmann, Pascal; Gamé, Xavier

    2015-12-01

    To evaluate the efficacy of a second injection of the same toxin versus switching to a different botulinum toxin A after failure of a first detrusor injection in patients with neurogenic detrusor overactivity. The charts of all patients who underwent detrusor injections of botulinum toxin A (either abobotulinumtoxinA or onabotulinumtoxinA) for the management of neurogenic detrusor overactivity at a single institution were retrospectively reviewed. Patients in whom a first detrusor injection had failed were included in the present study. They were managed by a second injection of the same toxin at the same dosage or by a new detrusor injection using a different botulinum toxin A. Success was defined as a resolution of urgency, urinary incontinence and detrusor overactivity in a patient self-catheterizing seven times or less per 24 h. A total of 58 patients were included for analysis. A toxin switch was carried out in 29 patients, whereas the other 29 patients received a reinjection of the same toxin at the same dose. The success rate was higher in patients who received a toxin switch (51.7% vs. 24.1%, P = 0.03). Patients treated with a switch from abobotulinumtoxinA to onabotulinumtoxinA and those treated with a switch from onabotulinumtoxinA to abobotulinumtoxinA had similar success rates (52.9% vs. 50%, P = 0.88). After failure of a first detrusor injection of botulinum toxin for neurogenic detrusor overactivity, a switch to a different toxin seems to be more effective than a second injection of the same toxin. The replacement of onabotulinumtoxin by abobotulinumtoxin or the reverse provides similar results. © 2015 The Japanese Urological Association.

  14. Toxins, Targets, and Triggers: An Overview of Toxin-Antitoxin Biology.

    PubMed

    Harms, Alexander; Brodersen, Ditlev Egeskov; Mitarai, Namiko; Gerdes, Kenn

    2018-06-07

    Bacterial toxin-antitoxin (TA) modules are abundant genetic elements that encode a toxin protein capable of inhibiting cell growth and an antitoxin that counteracts the toxin. The majority of toxins are enzymes that interfere with translation or DNA replication, but a wide variety of molecular activities and cellular targets have been described. Antitoxins are proteins or RNAs that often control their cognate toxins through direct interactions and, in conjunction with other signaling elements, through transcriptional and translational regulation of TA module expression. Three major biological functions of TA modules have been discovered, post-segregational killing ("plasmid addiction"), abortive infection (bacteriophage immunity through altruistic suicide), and persister formation (antibiotic tolerance through dormancy). In this review, we summarize the current state of the field and highlight how multiple levels of regulation shape the conditions of toxin activation to achieve the different biological functions of TA modules. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Toxic shock syndrome toxin-1, not α-toxin, mediated Bundaberg fatalities.

    PubMed

    Mueller, Elizabeth A; Merriman, Joseph A; Schlievert, Patrick M

    2015-12-01

    The 1928 Bundaberg disaster is one of the greatest vaccine tragedies in history. Of 21 children immunized with a diphtheria toxin-antitoxin preparation contaminated with Staphylococcus aureus, 18 developed life-threatening disease and 12 died within 48  h. Historically, the deaths have been attributed to α-toxin, a secreted cytotoxin produced by most S. aureus strains, yet the ability of the Bundaberg contaminant microbe to produce the toxin has never been verified. For the first time, the ability of the original strain to produce α-toxin and other virulence factors is investigated. The study investigates the genetic and regulatory loci mediating α-toxin expression by PCR and assesses production of the cytotoxin in vitro using an erythrocyte haemolysis assay. This analysis is extended to other secreted virulence factors produced by the strain, and their sufficiency to cause lethality in New Zealand white rabbits is determined. Although the strain possesses a wild-type allele for α-toxin, it must have a defective regulatory system, which is responsible for the strain's minimal α-toxin production. The strain encodes and produces staphylococcal superantigens, including toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 (TSST-1), which is sufficient to cause lethality in patients. The findings cast doubt on the belief that α-toxin is the major virulence factor responsible for the Bundaberg fatalities and point to the superantigen TSST-1 as the cause of the disaster.

  16. Tetanus toxin interaction with human erythrocytes. II. Kinetic properties of toxin association and evidence for a ganglioside-toxin macromolecular complex formation.

    PubMed

    Lazarovici, P; Yavin, E

    1985-01-25

    The properties of tetanus toxin interaction with human erythrocytes supplemented with disialo- and trisialo-gangliosides have been investigated. Binding of toxin is linear with time for 1 h and is 3-4-fold higher at 37 degrees C than at 4 degrees C during incubation of long duration. It exhibits saturation at toxin concentrations between 0.1 and 1 microgram/ml; however, it is nonsaturable between 1 and up to 50 micrograms/ml. It is effectively prevented by free gangliosides and antibodies or by pretreatment with sialidase but is unaffected by a number of closely related ligands including toxoid and toxin fragments. NaCl (1 M) removes a great portion (86%) of cell-associated toxin while Triton X-100 extracts an additional fraction (30%) of the salt-resistant cell-bound toxin. The residual sequestred toxin after detergent extraction is sensitive to proteolytic degradation. The trypsin-stable fraction (1.5%) is biotoxic and may be indicative of internalization of toxin. A macromolecular complex of about 700 kDa containing toxin and gangliosides has been isolated and characterized by Sephacryl S-300 gel permeation chromatography, SDS-gel electrophoresis, immunoprecipitability and biotoxicity. This complex is obtained only in ganglioside-supplemented cells and not when free 3H-labeled GD1b is reacted with 125I-labeled toxin in solution in the absence of cells. The hydrophobicity properties acquired as a result of ganglioside-toxin interaction, presumably at the cell surface, suggest a conformational change of the toxin which may enable its penetration into the bilayer.

  17. Anthrax Toxin

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1984-10-26

    focused initially on EF because it seemed possible that this component, like cholera toxin, might cause edema in skin through elevation of cellular cAMP...behavior differed from that seen in cells exposed to cholera toxin, where cellular cAMP levels remain elevated upon toxin removal. Studies in CHO cell...LF, the rat bioassay is not likely to be an appropriate system for studying the cellular and molecular mechanisms of action of LF. Therefore, a survey

  18. Bioterrorism: toxins as weapons.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Peter D

    2012-04-01

    The potential for biological weapons to be used in terrorism is a real possibility. Biological weapons include infectious agents and toxins. Toxins are poisons produced by living organisms. Toxins relevant to bioterrorism include ricin, botulinum, Clostridium perfrigens epsilson toxin, conotoxins, shigatoxins, saxitoxins, tetrodotoxins, mycotoxins, and nicotine. Toxins have properties of biological and chemical weapons. Unlike pathogens, toxins do not produce an infection. Ricin causes multiorgan toxicity by blocking protein synthesis. Botulinum blocks acetylcholine in the peripheral nervous system leading to muscle paralysis. Epsilon toxin damages cell membranes. Conotoxins block potassium and sodium channels in neurons. Shigatoxins inhibit protein synthesis and induce apoptosis. Saxitoxin and tetrodotoxin inhibit sodium channels in neurons. Mycotoxins include aflatoxins and trichothecenes. Aflatoxins are carcinogens. Trichothecenes inhibit protein and nucleic acid synthesis. Nicotine produces numerous nicotinic effects in the nervous system.

  19. Metabolism of HT-2 Toxin and T-2 Toxin in Oats

    PubMed Central

    Meng-Reiterer, Jacqueline; Bueschl, Christoph; Rechthaler, Justyna; Berthiller, Franz; Lemmens, Marc; Schuhmacher, Rainer

    2016-01-01

    The Fusarium mycotoxins HT-2 toxin (HT2) and T-2 toxin (T2) are frequent contaminants in oats. These toxins, but also their plant metabolites, may contribute to toxicological effects. This work describes the use of 13C-assisted liquid chromatography–high-resolution mass spectrometry for the first comprehensive study on the biotransformation of HT2 and T2 in oats. Using this approach, 16 HT2 and 17 T2 metabolites were annotated including novel glycosylated and hydroxylated forms of the toxins, hydrolysis products, and conjugates with acetic acid, putative malic acid, malonic acid, and ferulic acid. Further targeted quantitative analysis was performed to study toxin metabolism over time, as well as toxin and conjugate mobility within non-treated plant tissues. As a result, HT2-3-O-β-d-glucoside was identified as the major detoxification product of both parent toxins, which was rapidly formed (to an extent of 74% in HT2-treated and 48% in T2-treated oats within one day after treatment) and further metabolised. Mobility of the parent toxins appeared to be negligible, while HT2-3-O-β-d-glucoside was partly transported (up to approximately 4%) through panicle side branches and stem. Our findings demonstrate that the presented combination of untargeted and targeted analysis is well suited for the comprehensive elucidation of mycotoxin metabolism in plants. PMID:27929394

  20. Ongoing changes in migration phenology and winter residency at Bracken Bat Cave.

    PubMed

    Stepanian, Phillip M; Wainwright, Charlotte E

    2018-02-14

    Bats play an important role in agroecology and are effective bioindicators of environmental conditions, but little is known about their fundamental migration ecology, much less how these systems are responding to global change. Some of the world's largest bat populations occur during the summer in the south-central United States, when millions of pregnant females migrate from lower latitudes to give birth in communal maternity colonies. Despite a relatively large volume of research into these colonies, many fundamental questions regarding their abundance-including their intra- and interseasonal variability-remain unanswered, and even estimating the size of individual populations has been a long-running challenge. Overall, monitoring these bat populations at high temporal resolution (e.g., nightly) and across long time spans (e.g., decades) has been impossible. Here, we show 22 continuous years of nightly population counts at Bracken Cave, a large bat colony in south-central Texas, enabling the first climate-scale phenological analysis. Using quantitative radar monitoring, we found that spring migration and the summer reproductive cycle have advanced by approximately 2 weeks over the study period. Furthermore, we quantify the ongoing growth of a newly-established overwintering population that indicates a system-wide response to changing environmental conditions. Our observations reveal behavioral plasticity in bats' ability to adapt to changing resource availability, and provide the first long-term quantification of their response to a changing climate. As aerial insectivores, these changes in bat phenology and propensity for overwintering indicate probable shifts in prey availability, with clear implications for pest management across wider regional agrisystems. © 2018 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. Toxin yet not toxic: Botulinum toxin in dentistry.

    PubMed

    Archana, M S

    2016-04-01

    Paracelsus contrasted poisons from nonpoisons, stating that "All things are poisons, and there is nothing that is harmless; the dose alone decides that something is a poison". Living organisms, such as plants, animals, and microorganisms, constitute a huge source of pharmaceutically useful medicines and toxins. Depending on their source, toxins can be categorized as phytotoxins, mycotoxins, or zootoxins, which include venoms and bacterial toxins. Any toxin can be harmful or beneficial. Within the last 100 years, the perception of botulinum neurotoxin (BTX) has evolved from that of a poison to a versatile clinical agent with various uses. BTX plays a key role in the management of many orofacial and dental disorders. Its indications are rapidly expanding, with ongoing trials for further applications. However, despite its clinical use, what BTX specifically does in each condition is still not clear. The main aim of this review is to describe some of the unclear aspects of this potentially useful agent, with a focus on the current research in dentistry.

  2. Clostridium spiroforme toxin is a binary toxin which ADP-ribosylates cellular actin.

    PubMed

    Popoff, M R; Boquet, P

    1988-05-16

    We have purified from Clostridium spiroforme strain 246 an heterogeneous population of proteins (Sa) ranging from 43 to 47 kilodaltons exhibiting ADP-ribosyl transferase activity as do C. botulinum C2 toxin component I or the ia chain of C. perfringens E iota toxin. C. spiriforme Sa had alone no activity upon injection in mice or inoculated to Vero cells. When spiroforme ADP ribosyl transferase were mixed with a trypsin activated protein (Sb) separated from C. spiroforme bacterial supernatant, a lethal effect in mice and cytotoxicity on Vero cells were recorded. The Sa cross-reacted immunologically with either the light chain of C. perfringens E iota toxin or the ADP-ribosyl transferase from C. difficile 196 strain. No immunological relatedness was observed between Sa and C2 toxin component I. C. spiroforme toxin is thus another binary toxin close to iota.

  3. Millipede toxin

    MedlinePlus

    ... The toxin that millipedes release keeps away most predators. Some large millipede species can spray these toxins ... Your local poison control center can be reached directly by calling the national toll-free Poison Help hotline (1-800-222-1222) from ...

  4. Botulinum toxin in parkinsonism: The when, how, and which for botulinum toxin injections.

    PubMed

    Cardoso, Francisco

    2018-06-01

    The aim of this article is to provide a review of the use of injections of botulinum toxin in the management of selected symptoms and signs of Parkinson's disease and other forms of parkinsonism. Sialorrhea is defined as inability to control oral secretions, resulting in excessive saliva in the oropharynx. There is a high level of evidence for the treatment of sialorrhea in parkinsonism with injections of different forms of botulinum toxin type A as well as botulinum toxin type B. Tremor can be improved by the use of botulinum toxin injections but improved tremor control often leads to concomitant motor weakness, limiting its use. Levodopa induced dyskinesias are difficult to treat with botulinum toxin injections because of their variable frequency and direction. Apraxia of eyelid opening, a sign more commonly seen in progressive supranuclear palsy and other tauopathies, often improves after botulinum toxin injections. Recent data suggest that regardless of the underlying mechanism, pain in parkinsonism can be alleviated by botulinum toxin injections. Finally, freezing of gait, camptocormia and Pisa syndrome in parkinsonism almost invariably fail to respond to botulinum toxin injections. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Pertussis toxin

    SciTech Connect

    Sekura, R.D.; Moss, J.; Vaughan, M.

    1985-01-01

    This book contains 13 selections. Some of the titles are: Genetic and Functional Studies of Pertussis Toxin Substrates; Effect of Pertussis Toxin on the Hormonal Responsiveness of Different Tissues; Extracellular Adenylate Cyclase of Bordetella pertussis; and GTP-Regulatory Proteins are Introcellular Messagers: A Model for Hormone Action.

  6. Higher cytotoxicity of divalent antibody-toxins than monovalent antibody-toxins

    SciTech Connect

    Won, JaeSeon; Nam, PilWon; Lee, YongChan

    2009-04-24

    Recombinant antibody-toxins are constructed via the fusion of a 'carcinoma-specific' antibody fragment to a toxin. Due to the high affinity and high selectivity of the antibody fragments, antibody-toxins can bind to surface antigens on cancer cells and kill them without harming normal cells [L.H. Pai, J.K. Batra, D.J. FitzGerald, M.C. Willingham, I. Pastan, Anti-tumor activities of immunotoxins made of monoclonal antibody B3 and various forms of Pseudomonas exotoxin, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 88 (1991) 3358-3362]. In this study, we constructed the antibody-toxin, Fab-SWn-PE38, with SWn (n = 3, 6, 9) sequences containing n-time repeated (G{sub 4}S) between the Fabmore » fragment and PE38 (38 kDa truncated form of Pseudomonas exotoxin A). The SWn sequence also harbored one cysteine residue that could form a disulfide bridge between two Fab-SWn-PE38 monomers. We assessed the cytotoxicity of the monovalent (Fab-SWn-PE38), and divalent ([Fab-SWn-PE38]{sub 2}) antibody-toxins. The cytotoxicity of the dimer against the CRL1739 cell line was approximately 18.8-fold higher than that of the monomer on the ng/ml scale, which was approximately 37.6-fold higher on the pM scale. These results strongly indicate that divalency provides higher cytotoxicity for an antibody-toxin.« less

  7. Antibody-based bacterial toxin detection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Menking, Darrell E.; Heitz, Jonathon M.; Anis, Nabil A.; Thompson, Roy G.

    1994-03-01

    Fiber optic evanescent fluorosensors are under investigation in our laboratory for the study of drug-receptor interactions for detection of threat agents and antibody-antigen interactions for detection of biological toxins. In a one step assay, antibodies against Cholera toxin or Staphylococcus Enterotoxin B were noncovalently immobilized on quartz fibers and probed with fluorescein-isothiocyanate (FITC)-labeled toxins. In the two-step assay, Cholera toxin or Botulinum toxoid A was immobilized onto the fiber, followed by incubation in an antiserum or partially purified antitoxin IgG. These were then probed with FITC-anti-IgG antibodies. Unlabeled toxins competed with labeled toxins or antitoxin IgG in a dose-dependent manner and the detection of the toxins was in the nanomolar range.

  8. Toxin Plasmids of Clostridium perfringens

    PubMed Central

    Li, Jihong; Adams, Vicki; Bannam, Trudi L.; Miyamoto, Kazuaki; Garcia, Jorge P.; Uzal, Francisco A.; Rood, Julian I.

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY In both humans and animals, Clostridium perfringens is an important cause of histotoxic infections and diseases originating in the intestines, such as enteritis and enterotoxemia. The virulence of this Gram-positive, anaerobic bacterium is heavily dependent upon its prolific toxin-producing ability. Many of the ∼16 toxins produced by C. perfringens are encoded by large plasmids that range in size from ∼45 kb to ∼140 kb. These plasmid-encoded toxins are often closely associated with mobile elements. A C. perfringens strain can carry up to three different toxin plasmids, with a single plasmid carrying up to three distinct toxin genes. Molecular Koch's postulate analyses have established the importance of several plasmid-encoded toxins when C. perfringens disease strains cause enteritis or enterotoxemias. Many toxin plasmids are closely related, suggesting a common evolutionary origin. In particular, most toxin plasmids and some antibiotic resistance plasmids of C. perfringens share an ∼35-kb region containing a Tn916-related conjugation locus named tcp (transfer of clostridial plasmids). This tcp locus can mediate highly efficient conjugative transfer of these toxin or resistance plasmids. For example, conjugative transfer of a toxin plasmid from an infecting strain to C. perfringens normal intestinal flora strains may help to amplify and prolong an infection. Therefore, the presence of toxin genes on conjugative plasmids, particularly in association with insertion sequences that may mobilize these toxin genes, likely provides C. perfringens with considerable virulence plasticity and adaptability when it causes diseases originating in the gastrointestinal tract. PMID:23699255

  9. Toxin-Based Therapeutic Approaches

    PubMed Central

    Shapira, Assaf; Benhar, Itai

    2010-01-01

    Protein toxins confer a defense against predation/grazing or a superior pathogenic competence upon the producing organism. Such toxins have been perfected through evolution in poisonous animals/plants and pathogenic bacteria. Over the past five decades, a lot of effort has been invested in studying their mechanism of action, the way they contribute to pathogenicity and in the development of antidotes that neutralize their action. In parallel, many research groups turned to explore the pharmaceutical potential of such toxins when they are used to efficiently impair essential cellular processes and/or damage the integrity of their target cells. The following review summarizes major advances in the field of toxin based therapeutics and offers a comprehensive description of the mode of action of each applied toxin. PMID:22069564

  10. Toxins of Prokaryotic Toxin-Antitoxin Systems with Sequence-Specific Endoribonuclease Activity

    PubMed Central

    Masuda, Hisako; Inouye, Masayori

    2017-01-01

    Protein translation is the most common target of toxin-antitoxin system (TA) toxins. Sequence-specific endoribonucleases digest RNA in a sequence-specific manner, thereby blocking translation. While past studies mainly focused on the digestion of mRNA, recent analysis revealed that toxins can also digest tRNA, rRNA and tmRNA. Purified toxins can digest single-stranded portions of RNA containing recognition sequences in the absence of ribosome in vitro. However, increasing evidence suggests that in vivo digestion may occur in association with ribosomes. Despite the prevalence of recognition sequences in many mRNA, preferential digestion seems to occur at specific positions within mRNA and also in certain reading frames. In this review, a variety of tools utilized to study the nuclease activities of toxins over the past 15 years will be reviewed. A recent adaptation of an RNA-seq-based technique to analyze entire sets of cellular RNA will be introduced with an emphasis on its strength in identifying novel targets and redefining recognition sequences. The differences in biochemical properties and postulated physiological roles will also be discussed. PMID:28420090

  11. Improved purification process for cholera toxin and its application to the quantification of residual toxin in cholera vaccines.

    PubMed

    Jang, Hyun; Kim, Hyo Seung; Kim, Jeong Ah; Seo, Jin Ho; Carbis, Rodney

    2009-01-01

    A simplified method for the purification of cholera toxin was developed. The 569B strain of Vibrio cholerae, a recognized hyper-producer of cholera toxin, was propagated in a bioreactor under conditions that promote the production of the toxin. The toxin was separated from the bacterial cells using 0.2-microm crossflow microfiltration, the clarified toxin was passed through the membrane into the permeate, and the bacterial cells were retained in the retentate. The 0.2-microm permeate was then concentrated 3-fold and diafiltered against 10 mM phosphate buffer, pH 7.6, using 30-kDa crossflow ultrafiltration. The concentrated toxin was loaded onto a cation exchange column, the toxin was bound to the column, and most of the impurities were passed unimpeded through the column. The toxin was eluted with a salt gradient of phosphate buffer, pH7.0, containing 1.0M NaCl. The peak containing the toxin was assayed for cholera toxin and protein and the purity was determined to be 92%. The toxin peak had a low endotoxin level of 3.1 EU/microg of toxin. The purified toxin was used to prepare antiserum against whole toxin, which was used in a G(M1) ganglioside-binding ELISA to determine residual levels of toxin in an oral inactivated whole-cell cholera vaccine. The G(M1) ganglioside-binding ELISA was shown to be very sensitive and capable of detecting as little as 1 ng/ml of cholera toxin.

  12. Clostridium difficile binary toxin CDT

    PubMed Central

    Gerding, Dale N; Johnson, Stuart; Rupnik, Maja; Aktories, Klaus

    2014-01-01

    Binary toxin (CDT) is frequently observed in Clostridium difficile strains associated with increased severity of C. difficile infection (CDI). CDT belongs to the family of binary ADP-ribosylating toxins consisting of two separate toxin components: CDTa, the enzymatic ADP-ribosyltransferase which modifies actin, and CDTb which binds to host cells and translocates CDTa into the cytosol. CDTb is activated by serine proteases and binds to lipolysis stimulated lipoprotein receptor. ADP-ribosylation induces depolymerization of the actin cytoskeleton. Toxin-induced actin depolymerization also produces microtubule-based membrane protrusions which form a network on epithelial cells and increase bacterial adherence. Multiple clinical studies indicate an association between binary toxin genes in C. difficile and increased 30-d CDI mortality independent of PCR ribotype. Further studies including measures of binary toxin in stool, analyses of CDI mortality caused by CDT-producing strains, and examination of the relationship of CDT expression to TcdA and TcdB toxin variants and PCR ribotypes are needed. PMID:24253566

  13. Characterization of Alpha-Toxin hla Gene Variants, Alpha-Toxin Expression Levels, and Levels of Antibody to Alpha-Toxin in Hemodialysis and Postsurgical Patients with Staphylococcus aureus Bacteremia

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Yuling; Tabor, David E.; Mok, Hoyin; Sellman, Bret R.; Jenkins, Amy; Yu, Li; Jafri, Hasan S.; Rude, Thomas H.; Ruffin, Felicia; Schell, Wiley A.; Park, Lawrence P.; Yan, Qin; Thaden, Joshua T.; Messina, Julia A.; Esser, Mark T.

    2014-01-01

    Alpha-toxin is a major Staphylococcus aureus virulence factor. This study evaluated potential relationships between in vitro alpha-toxin expression of S. aureus bloodstream isolates, anti-alpha-toxin antibody in serum of patients with S. aureus bacteremia (SAB), and clinical outcomes in 100 hemodialysis and 100 postsurgical SAB patients. Isolates underwent spa typing and hla sequencing. Serum anti-alpha-toxin IgG and neutralizing antibody levels were measured by using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and a red blood cell (RBC)-based hemolysis neutralization assay. Neutralization of alpha-toxin by an anti-alpha-toxin monoclonal antibody (MAb MEDI4893) was tested in an RBC-based lysis assay. Most isolates encoded hla (197/200; 98.5%) and expressed alpha-toxin (173/200; 86.5%). In vitro alpha-toxin levels were inversely associated with survival (cure, 2.19 μg/ml, versus failure, 1.09 μg/ml; P < 0.01). Both neutralizing (hemodialysis, 1.26 IU/ml, versus postsurgical, 0.95; P < 0.05) and IgG (hemodialysis, 1.94 IU/ml, versus postsurgical, 1.27; P < 0.05) antibody levels were higher in the hemodialysis population. Antibody levels were also significantly higher in patients infected with alpha-toxin-expressing S. aureus isolates (P < 0.05). Levels of both neutralizing antibodies and IgG were similar among patients who were cured and those not cured (failures). Sequence analysis of hla revealed 12 distinct hla genotypes, and all genotypic variants were susceptible to a neutralizing monoclonal antibody in clinical development (MEDI4893). These data demonstrate that alpha-toxin is highly conserved in clinical S. aureus isolates. Higher in vitro alpha-toxin levels were associated with a positive clinical outcome. Although patients infected with alpha-toxin-producing S. aureus exhibited higher anti-alpha-toxin antibody levels, these levels were not associated with a better clinical outcome in this study. PMID:25392350

  14. Lymphocyte receptors for pertussis toxin

    SciTech Connect

    Clark, C.G.; Armstrong, G.D.

    1990-12-01

    We have investigated human T-lymphocyte receptors for pertussis toxin by affinity isolation and photoaffinity labeling procedures. T lymphocytes were obtained from peripheral human blood, surface iodinated, and solubilized in Triton X-100. The iodinated mixture was then passed through pertussis toxin-agarose, and the fractions were analyzed by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Autoradiography of the fixed, dried gels revealed several bands in the pertussis toxin-bound fraction that were not observed in fractions obtained from histone or fetuin-agarose. Further investigations employed a photoaffinity labeling reagent, sulfosuccinimidyl 2-(p-azido-salicylamido)-1,3'-dithiopropionate, to identify pertussis toxin receptors in freshly isolated peripheral blood monocytic cells, T lymphocytes, andmore » Jurkat cells. In all three cell systems, the pertussis toxin affinity probe specifically labeled a single protein species with an apparent molecular weight of 70,000 that was not observed when the procedure was performed in the presence of excess unmodified pertussis toxin. A protein comparable in molecular weight to the one detected by the photoaffinity labeling technique was also observed among the species that bound to pertussis toxin-agarose. The results suggest that pertussis toxin may bind to a 70,000-Da receptor in human T lymphocytes.« less

  15. Botulinum toxin: Bioweapon & magic drug

    PubMed Central

    Dhaked, Ram Kumar; Singh, Manglesh Kumar; Singh, Padma; Gupta, Pallavi

    2010-01-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins, causative agents of botulism in humans, are produced by Clostridium botulinum, an anaerobic spore-former Gram positive bacillus. Botulinum neurotoxin poses a major bioweapon threat because of its extreme potency and lethality; its ease of production, transport, and misuse; and the need for prolonged intensive care among affected persons. A single gram of crystalline toxin, evenly dispersed and inhaled, can kill more than one million people. The basis of the phenomenal potency of botulinum toxin is enzymatic; the toxin is a zinc proteinase that cleaves neuronal vesicle associated proteins responsible for acetylcholine release into the neuromuscular junction. As a military or terrorist weapon, botulinum toxin could be disseminated via aerosol or by contamination of water or food supplies, causing widespread casualties. A fascinating aspect of botulinum toxin research in recent years has been development of the most potent toxin into a molecule of significant therapeutic utility. It is the first biological toxin which is licensed for treatment of human diseases. In the late 1980s, Canada approved use of the toxin to treat strabismus, in 2001 in the removal of facial wrinkles and in 2002, the FDA in the United States followed suit. The present review focuses on both warfare potential and medical uses of botulinum neurotoxin. PMID:21149997

  16. Botulinum toxin: bioweapon & magic drug.

    PubMed

    Dhaked, Ram Kumar; Singh, Manglesh Kumar; Singh, Padma; Gupta, Pallavi

    2010-11-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins, causative agents of botulism in humans, are produced by Clostridium botulinum, an anaerobic spore-former Gram positive bacillus. Botulinum neurotoxin poses a major bioweapon threat because of its extreme potency and lethality; its ease of production, transport, and misuse; and the need for prolonged intensive care among affected persons. A single gram of crystalline toxin, evenly dispersed and inhaled, can kill more than one million people. The basis of the phenomenal potency of botulinum toxin is enzymatic; the toxin is a zinc proteinase that cleaves neuronal vesicle associated proteins responsible for acetylcholine release into the neuromuscular junction. As a military or terrorist weapon, botulinum toxin could be disseminated via aerosol or by contamination of water or food supplies, causing widespread casualties. A fascinating aspect of botulinum toxin research in recent years has been development of the most potent toxin into a molecule of significant therapeutic utility . It is the first biological toxin which is licensed for treatment of human diseases. In the late 1980s, Canada approved use of the toxin to treat strabismus, in 2001 in the removal of facial wrinkles and in 2002, the FDA in the United States followed suit. The present review focuses on both warfare potential and medical uses of botulinum neurotoxin.

  17. Topical botulinum toxin.

    PubMed

    Collins, Ashley; Nasir, Adnan

    2010-03-01

    Nanotechnology is a rapidly growing discipline that capitalizes on the unique properties of matter engineered on the nanoscale. Vehicles incorporating nanotechnology have led to great strides in drug delivery, allowing for increased active ingredient stability, bioavailability, and site-specific targeting. Botulinum toxin has historically been used for the correction of neurological and neuromuscular disorders, such as torticollis, blepharospasm, and strabismus. Recent dermatological indications have been for the management of axillary hyperhydrosis and facial rhytides. Traditional methods of botulinum toxin delivery have been needle-based. These have been associated with increased pain and cost. Newer methods of botulinum toxin formulation have yielded topical preparations that are bioactive in small pilot clinical studies. While there are some risks associated with topical delivery, the refinement and standardization of delivery systems and techniques for the topical administration of botulinum toxin using nanotechnology is anticipated in the near future.

  18. Detecting and discriminating among Shiga toxins

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The virulence associated with Shiga toxin producing Escherichia coli (STEC) infections is from the Shiga toxins produced by the E. coli strain. Although Shiga toxins are associated with E. coli, the expression of the toxins is actually controlled by a temperate lambdoid phage that infects the host. ...

  19. Botulinum Toxin and Gastrointestinal Tract Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Weiser, Kirsten; Kennedy, Abigail

    2008-01-01

    The history of botulinum toxin is fascinating. First recognized as the cause of botulism nearly 200 years ago, it was originally feared as a deadly poison. Over the last 30 years, however, botulinum toxin has been transformed into a readily available medication used to treat a variety of medical disorders. Interest in the use of botulinum toxin has been particularly strong for patients with spastic smooth muscle disorders of the gastrointestinal tract. Patients with achalasia, diffuse esophageal spasm, gastroparesis, sphincter of Oddi dysfunction, and anal fissures have all been treated with botulinum toxin injections, often with impressive results. However, not all patients respond to botulinum toxin therapy, and large randomized controlled trials are lacking for many conditions commonly treated with botulinum toxin. This paper reviews the history, microbiology, and pharmacology of botulinum toxin, discusses its mechanism of action, and then presents recent evidence from the literature regarding the use of botulinum toxin for the treatment of a variety of gastrointestinal tract disorders. PMID:21960915

  20. Pore-forming activity of clostridial binary toxins.

    PubMed

    Knapp, O; Benz, R; Popoff, M R

    2016-03-01

    Clostridial binary toxins (Clostridium perfringens Iota toxin, Clostridium difficile transferase, Clostridium spiroforme toxin, Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin) as Bacillus binary toxins, including Bacillus anthracis toxins consist of two independent proteins, one being the binding component which mediates the internalization into cell of the intracellularly active component. Clostridial binary toxins induce actin cytoskeleton disorganization through mono-ADP-ribosylation of globular actin and are responsible for enteric diseases. Clostridial and Bacillus binary toxins share structurally and functionally related binding components which recognize specific cell receptors, oligomerize, form pores in endocytic vesicle membrane, and mediate the transport of the enzymatic component into the cytosol. Binding components retain the global structure of pore-forming toxins (PFTs) from the cholesterol-dependent cytotoxin family such as perfringolysin. However, their pore-forming activity notably that of clostridial binding components is more related to that of heptameric PFT family including aerolysin and C. perfringens epsilon toxin. This review focuses upon pore-forming activity of clostridial binary toxins compared to other related PFTs. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Pore-Forming Toxins edited by Mauro Dalla Serra and Franco Gambale. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Botulinum toxin injection - larynx

    MedlinePlus

    Injection laryngoplasty; Botox - larynx: spasmodic dysphonia-BTX; Essential voice tremor (EVT)-btx; Glottic insufficiency; Percutaneous electromyography - guided botulinum toxin treatment; Percutaneous indirect laryngoscopy - guided botulinum toxin treatment; ...

  2. Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin: the third most potent bacterial toxin known.

    PubMed

    Alves, Guilherme Guerra; Machado de Ávila, Ricardo Andrez; Chávez-Olórtegui, Carlos Delfin; Lobato, Francisco Carlos Faria

    2014-12-01

    Epsilon toxin (ETX) is produced by Clostridium perfringens type B and D strains and causes enterotoxemia, a highly lethal disease with major impacts on the farming of domestic ruminants, particularly sheep. ETX belongs to the aerolysin-like pore-forming toxin family. Although ETX has striking similarities to other toxins in this family, ETX is often more potent, with an LD50 of 100 ng/kg in mice. Due to this high potency, ETX is considered as a potential bioterrorism agent and has been classified as a category B biological agent by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of the United States. The protoxin is converted to an active toxin through proteolytic cleavage performed by specific proteases. ETX is absorbed and acts locally in the intestines then subsequently binds to and causes lesions in other organs, including the kidneys, lungs and brain. The importance of this toxin for veterinary medicine and its possible use as a biological weapon have drawn the attention of researchers and have led to a large number of studies investigating ETX. The aim of the present work is to review the existing knowledge on ETX from C. perfringens type B and D. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. [Today's threat of ricin toxin].

    PubMed

    From, Sławomir; Płusa, Tadeusz

    2015-09-01

    Since the late 70s of the last century there were more than 700 incidents related to the use of the ricin toxin. For this reason, CDC (Center of Disease Control and Prevention) recognized toxin as a biological weapon category B. The lethal dose of ricin toxin after parenteral administration is 0.0001 mg/kg and after oral administration 0.2 mg. The first symptoms of poisoning occur within a few hours after application of toxin as a nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. In the final stage there are observed: cardiac arrhythmia, collapse and symptoms suggestive of involvement of the central nervous system. Stage immediately preceding death is a state of coma. The ricin toxin is still the substance against which action has no optimal antidote. Developed a vaccine called RiVax is waiting for its registration. It should be pointed out that the availability of a ricin toxin makes it possible to use it for real bioterrorists. © 2015 MEDPRESS.

  4. A common origin for the bacterial toxin-antitoxin systems parD and ccd, suggested by analyses of toxin/target and toxin/antitoxin interactions.

    PubMed

    Smith, Andrew B; López-Villarejo, Juan; Diago-Navarro, Elizabeth; Mitchenall, Lesley A; Barendregt, Arjan; Heck, Albert J; Lemonnier, Marc; Maxwell, Anthony; Díaz-Orejas, Ramón

    2012-01-01

    Bacterial toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems encode two proteins, a potent inhibitor of cell proliferation (toxin) and its specific antidote (antitoxin). Structural data has revealed striking similarities between the two model TA toxins CcdB, a DNA gyrase inhibitor encoded by the ccd system of plasmid F, and Kid, a site-specific endoribonuclease encoded by the parD system of plasmid R1. While a common structural fold seemed at odds with the two clearly different modes of action of these toxins, the possibility of functional crosstalk between the parD and ccd systems, which would further point to their common evolutionary origin, has not been documented. Here, we show that the cleavage of RNA and the inhibition of protein synthesis by the Kid toxin, two activities that are specifically counteracted by its cognate Kis antitoxin, are altered, but not inhibited, by the CcdA antitoxin. In addition, Kis was able to inhibit the stimulation of DNA gyrase-mediated cleavage of DNA by CcdB, albeit less efficiently than CcdA. We further show that physical interactions between the toxins and antitoxins of the different systems do occur and define the stoichiometry of the complexes formed. We found that CcdB did not degrade RNA nor did Kid have any reproducible effect on the tested DNA gyrase activities, suggesting that these toxins evolved to reach different, rather than common, cellular targets.

  5. Purification of the Clostridium spiroforme binary toxin and activity of the toxin on HEp-2 cells.

    PubMed

    Popoff, M R; Milward, F W; Bancillon, B; Boquet, P

    1989-08-01

    The two components Sa (Mr, 44,000) and Sb (Mr, 92,000) of Clostridium spiroforme toxin were identified and characterized. Serological data permitted the identification of two groups of actin ADP-ribosylating clostridial toxins. The first consists of only C. botulinum C2. The second group includes spiroforme toxin, iota toxin of C. perfringens E, and an enzyme called CDT found in one strain of C. difficile, antibodies against which cross-react with all of the members of both groups. C. spiroforme toxin acted on cells by disrupting microfilaments by ADP-ribosylation of G actin. Toxicity was not blocked by 10 or 20 mM ammonium chloride and was only moderately inhibited by 30 mM NH4Cl. Inhibition of coated-pit formation in HEp-2 cells by potassium depletion strongly protected against the effect of C. spiroforme toxin. Toxicity was not blocked by incubation of HEp-2 cells and spiroforme toxin at 15 degrees C. These results suggest that this new binary toxin enters cells via the coated-pit-coated-vesicle pathway and might reach the cytoplasm at the same time as or before transfer to early endosomes.

  6. Purification of the Clostridium spiroforme binary toxin and activity of the toxin on HEp-2 cells.

    PubMed Central

    Popoff, M R; Milward, F W; Bancillon, B; Boquet, P

    1989-01-01

    The two components Sa (Mr, 44,000) and Sb (Mr, 92,000) of Clostridium spiroforme toxin were identified and characterized. Serological data permitted the identification of two groups of actin ADP-ribosylating clostridial toxins. The first consists of only C. botulinum C2. The second group includes spiroforme toxin, iota toxin of C. perfringens E, and an enzyme called CDT found in one strain of C. difficile, antibodies against which cross-react with all of the members of both groups. C. spiroforme toxin acted on cells by disrupting microfilaments by ADP-ribosylation of G actin. Toxicity was not blocked by 10 or 20 mM ammonium chloride and was only moderately inhibited by 30 mM NH4Cl. Inhibition of coated-pit formation in HEp-2 cells by potassium depletion strongly protected against the effect of C. spiroforme toxin. Toxicity was not blocked by incubation of HEp-2 cells and spiroforme toxin at 15 degrees C. These results suggest that this new binary toxin enters cells via the coated-pit-coated-vesicle pathway and might reach the cytoplasm at the same time as or before transfer to early endosomes. Images PMID:2545625

  7. Clostridium perfringens type A–E toxin plasmids

    PubMed Central

    Freedman, John C.; Theoret, James R.; Wisniewski, Jessica A.; Uzal, Francisco A.; Rood, Julian I.; McClane, Bruce A.

    2014-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens relies upon plasmid-encoded toxin genes to cause intestinal infections. These toxin genes are associated with insertion sequences that may facilitate their mobilization and transfer, giving rise to new toxin plasmids with common backbones. Most toxin plasmids carry a transfer of clostridial plasmids locus mediating conjugation, which likely explains the presence of similar toxin plasmids in otherwise unrelated C. perfringens strains. The association of many toxin genes with insertion sequences and conjugative plasmids provides virulence flexibility when causing intestinal infections. However, incompatibility issues apparently limit the number of toxin plasmids maintained by a single cell. PMID:25283728

  8. THE PRODUCTION OF DIPHTHERIA TOXIN

    PubMed Central

    Park, W. H.; Williams, A. W.

    1896-01-01

    Toxin of sufficient strength to kill a 400-gramme guinea-pig in three days and a half in a dose of 0·cubic centimetre developed in suitable bouillon, contained in ordinary Erlenmeyer flasks, within a period of twenty-four hours. In such boullon the toxin reached its greatest strength in from four to seven days (0·005 cubic centimetre killing a 500-gramme guinea-pig in three days). This period of time covered that of the greatest growth of the bacilli, as shown both by the appearance of the culture and by the number of colonies developing an agar plates. The bodies of the diphtheria bacili did not at any time contain toxin in cosiderable amounts. The type of growth of the bacili and the rapidity and extent of the production of toxin depended more on the reaction of the bouillon than upon any other single factor. The best results were obtained in bouillon which, after being neutralized to litmus, had about seven cubic centimetres of normal soda solution added to each litre. An excessive amount of either acid or alkali prevented the development of toxin. Strong toxin was produced in bouillon containing peptone ranging from one to ten per cent. The strength of toxin averaged greater in the two and four-per-cent peptone solutions than in the one-percent. When the stage of acid reaction was brief and the degree of acidity probably slight, strong toxin developed while the culture bouillon was still acid; but when the stage of acid reaction was prolonged, little if any toxin was produced until just before the fluid became alkaline. Glucose is deleterious to the growth of the diphtheria bacillus and to the production of toxin when it is present in sufficient amounts to cause by its disintegration too great a degree of acidity in the fluid culture. When the acid resulting from decomposition of glucose is neutralized by the addition of alkali the diphtheria bacilus again grows abundantly. Glucose is not present, at least as a rule, in sufficient amounts in the meat as

  9. [Intoxication of botulinum toxin].

    PubMed

    Chudzicka, Aleksandra

    2015-09-01

    Botulinum toxin is an egzotoxin produced by Gram positive bacteria Clostridium botulinum. It is among the most potent toxins known. The 3 main clinical presentations of botulism are as follows: foodborne botulism, infant botulism and wound botulism. The main symptom of intoxication is flat muscles paralysis. The treatment is supportive care and administration of antitoxin. In prevention the correct preparing of canned food is most important. Botulinum toxin is accepted as a biological weapon. © 2015 MEDPRESS.

  10. Why do we study animal toxins?

    PubMed Central

    ZHANG, Yun

    2015-01-01

    Venom (toxins) is an important trait evolved along the evolutionary tree of animals. Our knowledges on venoms, such as their origins and loss, the biological relevance and the coevolutionary patterns with other organisms are greatly helpful in understanding many fundamental biological questions, i.e., the environmental adaptation and survival competition, the evolution shaped development and balance of venoms, and the sophisticated correlations among venom, immunity, body power, intelligence, their genetic basis, inherent association, as well as the cost-benefit and trade-offs of biological economy. Lethal animal envenomation can be found worldwide. However, from foe to friend, toxin studies have led lots of important discoveries and exciting avenues in deciphering and fighting human diseases, including the works awarded the Nobel Prize and lots of key clinic therapeutics. According to our survey, so far, only less than 0.1% of the toxins of the venomous animals in China have been explored. We emphasize on the similarities shared by venom and immune systems, as well as the studies of toxin knowledge-based physiological toxin-like proteins/peptides (TLPs). We propose the natural pairing hypothesis. Evolution links toxins with humans. Our mission is to find out the right natural pairings and interactions of our body elements with toxins, and with endogenous toxin-like molecules. Although, in nature, toxins may endanger human lives, but from a philosophical point of view, knowing them well is an effective way to better understand ourselves. So, this is why we study toxins. PMID:26228472

  11. A Common Origin for the Bacterial Toxin-Antitoxin Systems parD and ccd, Suggested by Analyses of Toxin/Target and Toxin/Antitoxin Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Mitchenall, Lesley A.; Barendregt, Arjan; Heck, Albert J.; Lemonnier, Marc; Maxwell, Anthony; Díaz-Orejas, Ramón

    2012-01-01

    Bacterial toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems encode two proteins, a potent inhibitor of cell proliferation (toxin) and its specific antidote (antitoxin). Structural data has revealed striking similarities between the two model TA toxins CcdB, a DNA gyrase inhibitor encoded by the ccd system of plasmid F, and Kid, a site-specific endoribonuclease encoded by the parD system of plasmid R1. While a common structural fold seemed at odds with the two clearly different modes of action of these toxins, the possibility of functional crosstalk between the parD and ccd systems, which would further point to their common evolutionary origin, has not been documented. Here, we show that the cleavage of RNA and the inhibition of protein synthesis by the Kid toxin, two activities that are specifically counteracted by its cognate Kis antitoxin, are altered, but not inhibited, by the CcdA antitoxin. In addition, Kis was able to inhibit the stimulation of DNA gyrase-mediated cleavage of DNA by CcdB, albeit less efficiently than CcdA. We further show that physical interactions between the toxins and antitoxins of the different systems do occur and define the stoichiometry of the complexes formed. We found that CcdB did not degrade RNA nor did Kid have any reproducible effect on the tested DNA gyrase activities, suggesting that these toxins evolved to reach different, rather than common, cellular targets. PMID:23029540

  12. Bordetella Adenylate Cyclase-Hemolysin Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Guiso, Nicole

    2017-01-01

    Adenylate cyclase-hemolysin toxin is secreted and produced by three classical species of the genus Bordetella: Bordetella pertussis, B. parapertussis and B. bronchiseptica. This toxin has several properties such as: (i) adenylate cyclase activity, enhanced after interaction with the eukaryotic protein, calmodulin; (ii) a pore-forming activity; (iii) an invasive activity. It plays an important role in the pathogenesis of these Bordetella species responsible for whooping cough in humans or persistent respiratory infections in mammals, by modulating host immune responses. In contrast with other Bordetella toxins or adhesins, lack of (or very low polymorphism) is observed in the structural gene encoding this toxin, supporting its importance as well as a potential role as a vaccine antigen against whooping cough. In this article, an overview of the investigations undertaken on this toxin is presented. PMID:28892012

  13. Pore-forming toxins in Cnidaria.

    PubMed

    Podobnik, Marjetka; Anderluh, Gregor

    2017-12-01

    The ancient phylum of Cnidaria contains many aquatic species with peculiar lifestyle. In order to survive, these organisms have evolved attack and defense mechanisms that are enabled by specialized cells and highly developed venoms. Pore-forming toxins are an important part of their venomous arsenal. Along some other types, the most representative are examples of four protein families that are commonly found in other kingdoms of life: actinoporins, Cry-like proteins, aerolysin-like toxins and MACPF/CDC toxins. Some of the homologues of pore-forming toxins may serve other functions, such as in food digestion, development and response against pathogenic organisms. Due to their interesting physico-chemical properties, the cnidarian pore-forming toxins may also serve as tools in medical research and nanobiotechnological applications. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Plant Insecticidal Toxins in Ecological Networks

    PubMed Central

    Ibanez, Sébastien; Gallet, Christiane; Després, Laurence

    2012-01-01

    Plant secondary metabolites play a key role in plant-insect interactions, whether constitutive or induced, C- or N-based. Anti-herbivore defences against insects can act as repellents, deterrents, growth inhibitors or cause direct mortality. In turn, insects have evolved a variety of strategies to act against plant toxins, e.g., avoidance, excretion, sequestration and degradation of the toxin, eventually leading to a co-evolutionary arms race between insects and plants and to co-diversification. Anti-herbivore defences also negatively impact mutualistic partners, possibly leading to an ecological cost of toxin production. However, in other cases toxins can also be used by plants involved in mutualistic interactions to exclude inadequate partners and to modify the cost/benefit ratio of mutualism to their advantage. When considering the whole community, toxins have an effect at many trophic levels. Aposematic insects sequester toxins to defend themselves against predators. Depending on the ecological context, toxins can either increase insects’ vulnerability to parasitoids and entomopathogens or protect them, eventually leading to self-medication. We conclude that studying the community-level impacts of plant toxins can provide new insights into the synthesis between community and evolutionary ecology. PMID:22606374

  15. *CYANOBACTERIA AND THEIR TOXINS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Cyanobacteria, or blue-green algae, are naturally-occurring contaminants of surface waters worldwide. These photosynthesizing prokaryotes thrive in warm, shallow, nutrient-rich waters. Many produce potent toxins as secondary metabolites. Cyanobacteria toxins have been document...

  16. Synthesis and biology of cyclic imine toxins, an emerging class of potent, globally distributed marine toxins.

    PubMed

    Stivala, Craig E; Benoit, Evelyne; Aráoz, Rómulo; Servent, Denis; Novikov, Alexei; Molgó, Jordi; Zakarian, Armen

    2015-03-01

    From a small group of exotic compounds isolated only two decades ago, Cyclic Imine (CI) toxins have become a major class of marine toxins with global distribution. Their distinct chemical structure, biological mechanism of action, and intricate chemistry ensures that CI toxins will continue to be the subject of fascinating fundamental studies in the broad fields of chemistry, chemical biology, and toxicology. The worldwide occurrence of potent CI toxins in marine environments, their accumulation in shellfish, and chemical stability are important considerations in assessing risk factors for human health. This review article aims to provide an account of chemistry, biology, and toxicology of CI toxins from their discovery to the present day.

  17. Food toxin detection with atomic force microscope

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Externally introduced toxins or internal spoilage correlated pathogens and their metabolites are all potential sources of food toxins. To prevent and protect unsafe food, many food toxin detection techniques have been developed to detect various toxins for quality control. Although several routine m...

  18. The Interactions of Human Neutrophils with Shiga Toxins and Related Plant Toxins: Danger or Safety?

    PubMed Central

    Brigotti, Maurizio

    2012-01-01

    Shiga toxins and ricin are well characterized similar toxins belonging to quite different biological kingdoms. Plant and bacteria have evolved the ability to produce these powerful toxins in parallel, while humans have evolved a defense system that recognizes molecular patterns common to foreign molecules through specific receptors expressed on the surface of the main actors of innate immunity, namely monocytes and neutrophils. The interactions between these toxins and neutrophils have been widely described and have stimulated intense debate. This paper is aimed at reviewing the topic, focusing particularly on implications for the pathogenesis and diagnosis of hemolytic uremic syndrome. PMID:22741061

  19. Cellular Entry of Clostridium perfringens Iota-Toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 Toxin.

    PubMed

    Takehara, Masaya; Takagishi, Teruhisa; Seike, Soshi; Oda, Masataka; Sakaguchi, Yoshihiko; Hisatsune, Junzo; Ochi, Sadayuki; Kobayashi, Keiko; Nagahama, Masahiro

    2017-08-11

    Clostridium perfringens iota-toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin are composed of two non-linked proteins, one being the enzymatic component and the other being the binding/translocation component. These latter components recognize specific receptors and oligomerize in plasma membrane lipid-rafts, mediating the uptake of the enzymatic component into the cytosol. Enzymatic components induce actin cytoskeleton disorganization through the ADP-ribosylation of actin and are responsible for cell rounding and death. This review focuses upon the recent advances in cellular internalization of clostridial binary toxins.

  20. Conditional Toxin Splicing Using a Split Intein System.

    PubMed

    Alford, Spencer C; O'Sullivan, Connor; Howard, Perry L

    2017-01-01

    Protein toxin splicing mediated by split inteins can be used as a strategy for conditional cell ablation. The approach requires artificial fragmentation of a potent protein toxin and tethering each toxin fragment to a split intein fragment. The toxin-intein fragments are, in turn, fused to dimerization domains, such that addition of a dimerizing agent reconstitutes the split intein. These chimeric toxin-intein fusions remain nontoxic until the dimerizer is added, resulting in activation of intein splicing and ligation of toxin fragments to form an active toxin. Considerations for the engineering and implementation of conditional toxin splicing (CTS) systems include: choice of toxin split site, split site (extein) chemistry, and temperature sensitivity. The following method outlines design criteria and implementation notes for CTS using a previously engineered system for splicing a toxin called sarcin, as well as for developing alternative CTS systems.

  1. Mutant with diphtheria toxin receptor and acidification function but defective in entry of toxin

    SciTech Connect

    Kohno, Kenji; Hayes, H.; Mekada, Eisuke

    1987-09-01

    A mutant of Chinese hamster ovary cells, GE1, that is highly resistant to diphtheria toxin was isolated. The mutant contains 50% ADP-ribosylatable elongation factor 2, but its protein synthesis was not inhibited by the toxin even at concentrations above 100 {mu}g/ml. {sup 125}I-labeled diphtheria toxin was associated with GE1 cells as well as with the parent cells but did not block protein synthesis of GE1 cells even when the cells were exposed to low pH in the presence or absence of NH{sub 4}Cl. The infections of GE1 cells and the parent cells by vesicular stomatitis virus were similar. GE1 cellsmore » were cross-resistant to Pseudomonas aeruginosa exotoxin A and so were about 1,000 times more resistant to this toxin than the parent cells. Hybrids of GE1 cells and the parent cells or mutant cells lacking a functional receptor were more sensitive to diphtheria toxin than GE1 cells. These results suggest that entry of diphtheria toxin into cells requires a cellular factor(s) in addition to those involved in receptor function and acidification of endosomes and that GE1 cells do not express this cellular factor. This character is recessive in GE1 cells.« less

  2. Computational Studies of Snake Venom Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Ojeda, Paola G.; Caballero, Julio; Kaas, Quentin; González, Wendy

    2017-01-01

    Most snake venom toxins are proteins, and participate to envenomation through a diverse array of bioactivities, such as bleeding, inflammation, and pain, cytotoxic, cardiotoxic or neurotoxic effects. The venom of a single snake species contains hundreds of toxins, and the venoms of the 725 species of venomous snakes represent a large pool of potentially bioactive proteins. Despite considerable discovery efforts, most of the snake venom toxins are still uncharacterized. Modern bioinformatics tools have been recently developed to mine snake venoms, helping focus experimental research on the most potentially interesting toxins. Some computational techniques predict toxin molecular targets, and the binding mode to these targets. This review gives an overview of current knowledge on the ~2200 sequences, and more than 400 three-dimensional structures of snake toxins deposited in public repositories, as well as of molecular modeling studies of the interaction between these toxins and their molecular targets. We also describe how modern bioinformatics have been used to study the snake venom protein phospholipase A2, the small basic myotoxin Crotamine, and the three-finger peptide Mambalgin. PMID:29271884

  3. Clostridial toxins active locally in the gastrointestinal tract.

    PubMed

    Wilkins, T; Krivan, H; Stiles, B; Carman, R; Lyerly, D

    1985-01-01

    Clostridium difficile and Clostridium spiroforme have only in recent years been recognized as intestinal pathogens. They both produce toxins that are also produced by other clostridia. C. difficile toxins A and B are produced by C. sordellii and a few strains of C. perfringens whereas C. spiroforme produces the same toxins as C. perfringens Type E (iota toxin). Iota toxin activity may be the product of two proteins. Toxigenic strains of C. spiroforme and Type E produce two antigens which possess much more biological activity when administered together than when given alone. C. difficile was thought for some time to produce only a single toxin, but then the enterotoxic activity was shown to be due to a separate toxin (toxin A). This toxin increases the oral toxicity of toxin B (the main cytotoxin) and may increase the permeability of the colon. Toxin A binds to a specific receptor in hamster brush border membranes and in the membranes of rabbit erythrocytes. This receptor appears to be a glycoprotein. The receptor can be extracted from the membrane with Triton and binds to immobilized toxin A. The receptor can be extracted and used to coat plastic plates as a first phase in an ELISA assay. Another assay has been developed in which the toxin A binds to the red cells and then the erythrocytes are agglutinated with antitoxin. An even more sensitive assay consists of using rabbit erythrocyte ghosts to bind the toxin and then precipitating the ghosts with antibody to toxin A attached to latex beads. Monoclonal antibodies to toxin A also have been developed and are used in these and other assays.

  4. Brown spider dermonecrotic toxin directly induces nephrotoxicity

    SciTech Connect

    Chaim, Olga Meiri; Sade, Youssef Bacila; Bertoni da Silveira, Rafael

    2006-02-15

    Brown spider (Loxosceles genus) venom can induce dermonecrotic lesions at the bite site and systemic manifestations including fever, vomiting, convulsions, disseminated intravascular coagulation, hemolytic anemia and acute renal failure. The venom is composed of a mixture of proteins with several molecules biochemically and biologically well characterized. The mechanism by which the venom induces renal damage is unknown. By using mice exposed to Loxosceles intermedia recombinant dermonecrotic toxin (LiRecDT), we showed direct induction of renal injuries. Microscopic analysis of renal biopsies from dermonecrotic toxin-treated mice showed histological alterations including glomerular edema and tubular necrosis. Hyalinization of tubules with deposition of proteinaceousmore » material in the tubule lumen, tubule epithelial cell vacuoles, tubular edema and epithelial cell lysis was also observed. Leukocytic infiltration was neither observed in the glomerulus nor the tubules. Renal vessels showed no sign of inflammatory response. Additionally, biochemical analyses showed such toxin-induced changes in renal function as urine alkalinization, hematuria and azotemia with elevation of blood urea nitrogen levels. Immunofluorescence with dermonecrotic toxin antibodies and confocal microscopy analysis showed deposition and direct binding of this toxin to renal intrinsic structures. By immunoblotting with a hyperimmune dermonecrotic toxin antiserum on renal lysates from toxin-treated mice, we detected a positive signal at the region of 33-35 kDa, which strengthens the idea that renal failure is directly induced by dermonecrotic toxin. Immunofluorescence reaction with dermonecrotic toxin antibodies revealed deposition and binding of this toxin directly in MDCK epithelial cells in culture. Similarly, dermonecrotic toxin treatment caused morphological alterations of MDCK cells including cytoplasmic vacuoles, blebs, evoked impaired spreading and detached cells from each other and

  5. Cellular Entry of Clostridium perfringens Iota-Toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Takehara, Masaya; Takagishi, Teruhisa; Seike, Soshi; Oda, Masataka; Sakaguchi, Yoshihiko; Hisatsune, Junzo; Ochi, Sadayuki; Kobayashi, Keiko; Nagahama, Masahiro

    2017-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens iota-toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin are composed of two non-linked proteins, one being the enzymatic component and the other being the binding/translocation component. These latter components recognize specific receptors and oligomerize in plasma membrane lipid-rafts, mediating the uptake of the enzymatic component into the cytosol. Enzymatic components induce actin cytoskeleton disorganization through the ADP-ribosylation of actin and are responsible for cell rounding and death. This review focuses upon the recent advances in cellular internalization of clostridial binary toxins. PMID:28800062

  6. EGA Protects Mammalian Cells from Clostridium difficile CDT, Clostridium perfringens Iota Toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Schnell, Leonie; Mittler, Ann-Katrin; Sadi, Mirko; Popoff, Michel R.; Schwan, Carsten; Aktories, Klaus; Mattarei, Andrea; Tehran, Domenico Azarnia; Montecucco, Cesare; Barth, Holger

    2016-01-01

    The pathogenic bacteria Clostridium difficile, Clostridium perfringens and Clostridium botulinum produce the binary actin ADP-ribosylating toxins CDT, iota and C2, respectively. These toxins are composed of a transport component (B) and a separate enzyme component (A). When both components assemble on the surface of mammalian target cells, the B components mediate the entry of the A components via endosomes into the cytosol. Here, the A components ADP-ribosylate G-actin, resulting in depolymerization of F-actin, cell-rounding and eventually death. In the present study, we demonstrate that 4-bromobenzaldehyde N-(2,6-dimethylphenyl)semicarbazone (EGA), a compound that protects cells from multiple toxins and viruses, also protects different mammalian epithelial cells from all three binary actin ADP-ribosylating toxins. In contrast, EGA did not inhibit the intoxication of cells with Clostridium difficile toxins A and B, indicating a possible different entry route for this toxin. EGA does not affect either the binding of the C2 toxin to the cells surface or the enzyme activity of the A components of CDT, iota and C2, suggesting that this compound interferes with cellular uptake of the toxins. Moreover, for C2 toxin, we demonstrated that EGA inhibits the pH-dependent transport of the A component across cell membranes. EGA is not cytotoxic, and therefore, we propose it as a lead compound for the development of novel pharmacological inhibitors against clostridial binary actin ADP-ribosylating toxins. PMID:27043629

  7. EGA Protects Mammalian Cells from Clostridium difficile CDT, Clostridium perfringens Iota Toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 Toxin.

    PubMed

    Schnell, Leonie; Mittler, Ann-Katrin; Sadi, Mirko; Popoff, Michel R; Schwan, Carsten; Aktories, Klaus; Mattarei, Andrea; Azarnia Tehran, Domenico; Montecucco, Cesare; Barth, Holger

    2016-04-01

    The pathogenic bacteria Clostridium difficile, Clostridium perfringens and Clostridium botulinum produce the binary actin ADP-ribosylating toxins CDT, iota and C2, respectively. These toxins are composed of a transport component (B) and a separate enzyme component (A). When both components assemble on the surface of mammalian target cells, the B components mediate the entry of the A components via endosomes into the cytosol. Here, the A components ADP-ribosylate G-actin, resulting in depolymerization of F-actin, cell-rounding and eventually death. In the present study, we demonstrate that 4-bromobenzaldehyde N-(2,6-dimethylphenyl)semicarbazone (EGA), a compound that protects cells from multiple toxins and viruses, also protects different mammalian epithelial cells from all three binary actin ADP-ribosylating toxins. In contrast, EGA did not inhibit the intoxication of cells with Clostridium difficile toxins A and B, indicating a possible different entry route for this toxin. EGA does not affect either the binding of the C2 toxin to the cells surface or the enzyme activity of the A components of CDT, iota and C2, suggesting that this compound interferes with cellular uptake of the toxins. Moreover, for C2 toxin, we demonstrated that EGA inhibits the pH-dependent transport of the A component across cell membranes. EGA is not cytotoxic, and therefore, we propose it as a lead compound for the development of novel pharmacological inhibitors against clostridial binary actin ADP-ribosylating toxins.

  8. [Biological and toxin terrorism weapons].

    PubMed

    Bokan, Slavko

    2003-03-01

    The use of biological agents and toxins in warfare and terrorism has a long history. Human, animal and plant pathogens and toxins can cause disease and can be used as a threat to humans, animals and staple crops. The same is true for biological agents. Although the use of biological agents and toxins in military conflicts has been a concern of military communities for many years, several recent events have increased the awareness of terrorist use of these weapons against civilian population. A Mass Casualty Biological (Toxin) Weapon (MCBTW) is any biological and toxin weapon capable of causing death or disease on a large scale, such that the military or civilian infrastructure of the state or organization being attacked is overwhelmed. A militarily significant (or terrorist) weapon is any weapon capable of affecting, directly or indirectly, that is physically or psychologically, the outcome of a military operation. Although many biological agents such as toxins and bioregulators can be used to cause diseases, there are only a few that can truly threaten civilian populations on a large scale. Bioregulators or modulators are biochemical compounds, such as peptides, that occur naturally in organisms. They are new class of weapons that can damage nervous system, alter moods, trigger psychological changes and kill. The potential military or terrorist use of bioregulators is similar to that of toxins. Some of these compounds are several hundred times more potent than traditional chemical warfare agents. Important features and military advantages of new bioregulators are novel sites of toxic action; rapid and specific effects; penetration of protective filters and equipment, and militarily effective physical incapacitation. This overview of biological agents and toxins is largely intended to help healthcare providers on all levels to make decisions in protecting general population from these agents.

  9. Naturally Occurring Food Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Dolan, Laurie C.; Matulka, Ray A.; Burdock, George A.

    2010-01-01

    Although many foods contain toxins as a naturally-occurring constituent or, are formed as the result of handling or processing, the incidence of adverse reactions to food is relatively low. The low incidence of adverse effects is the result of some pragmatic solutions by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and other regulatory agencies through the creative use of specifications, action levels, tolerances, warning labels and prohibitions. Manufacturers have also played a role by setting limits on certain substances and developing mitigation procedures for process-induced toxins. Regardless of measures taken by regulators and food producers to protect consumers from natural food toxins, consumption of small levels of these materials is unavoidable. Although the risk for toxicity due to consumption of food toxins is fairly low, there is always the possibility of toxicity due to contamination, overconsumption, allergy or an unpredictable idiosyncratic response. The purpose of this review is to provide a toxicological and regulatory overview of some of the toxins present in some commonly consumed foods, and where possible, discuss the steps that have been taken to reduce consumer exposure, many of which are possible because of the unique process of food regulation in the United States. PMID:22069686

  10. SVM-Based Prediction of Propeptide Cleavage Sites in Spider Toxins Identifies Toxin Innovation in an Australian Tarantula

    PubMed Central

    Wong, Emily S. W.; Hardy, Margaret C.; Wood, David; Bailey, Timothy; King, Glenn F.

    2013-01-01

    Spider neurotoxins are commonly used as pharmacological tools and are a popular source of novel compounds with therapeutic and agrochemical potential. Since venom peptides are inherently toxic, the host spider must employ strategies to avoid adverse effects prior to venom use. It is partly for this reason that most spider toxins encode a protective proregion that upon enzymatic cleavage is excised from the mature peptide. In order to identify the mature toxin sequence directly from toxin transcripts, without resorting to protein sequencing, the propeptide cleavage site in the toxin precursor must be predicted bioinformatically. We evaluated different machine learning strategies (support vector machines, hidden Markov model and decision tree) and developed an algorithm (SpiderP) for prediction of propeptide cleavage sites in spider toxins. Our strategy uses a support vector machine (SVM) framework that combines both local and global sequence information. Our method is superior or comparable to current tools for prediction of propeptide sequences in spider toxins. Evaluation of the SVM method on an independent test set of known toxin sequences yielded 96% sensitivity and 100% specificity. Furthermore, we sequenced five novel peptides (not used to train the final predictor) from the venom of the Australian tarantula Selenotypus plumipes to test the accuracy of the predictor and found 80% sensitivity and 99.6% 8-mer specificity. Finally, we used the predictor together with homology information to predict and characterize seven groups of novel toxins from the deeply sequenced venom gland transcriptome of S. plumipes, which revealed structural complexity and innovations in the evolution of the toxins. The precursor prediction tool (SpiderP) is freely available on ArachnoServer (http://www.arachnoserver.org/spiderP.html), a web portal to a comprehensive relational database of spider toxins. All training data, test data, and scripts used are available from the Spider

  11. Neutralizing Monoclonal Antibodies against Disparate Epitopes on Ricin Toxin's Enzymatic Subunit Interfere with Intracellular Toxin Transport.

    PubMed

    Yermakova, Anastasiya; Klokk, Tove Irene; O'Hara, Joanne M; Cole, Richard; Sandvig, Kirsten; Mantis, Nicholas J

    2016-03-07

    Ricin is a member of the A-B family of bacterial and plant toxins that exploit retrograde trafficking to the Golgi apparatus and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) as a means to deliver their cytotoxic enzymatic subunits into the cytoplasm of mammalian cells. In this study we demonstrate that R70 and SyH7, two well-characterized monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) directed against distinct epitopes on the surface of ricin's enzymatic subunit (RTA), interfere with toxin transport from the plasma membrane to the trans Golgi network. Toxin-mAb complexes formed on the cell surface delayed ricin's egress from EEA-1(+) and Rab7(+) vesicles and enhanced toxin accumulation in LAMP-1(+) vesicles, suggesting the complexes were destined for degradation in lysosomes. Three other RTA-specific neutralizing mAbs against different epitopes were similar to R70 and SyH7 in terms of their effects on ricin retrograde transport. We conclude that interference with toxin retrograde transport may be a hallmark of toxin-neutralizing antibodies directed against disparate epitopes on RTA.

  12. The novel acidophilic structure of the killer toxin from halotolerant yeast demonstrates remarkable folding similarity with a fungal killer toxin.

    PubMed

    Kashiwagi, T; Kunishima, N; Suzuki, C; Tsuchiya, F; Nikkuni, S; Arata, Y; Morikawa, K

    1997-01-15

    Several strains of yeasts and fungi produce proteinous substances, termed killer toxins, which kill sensitive strains. The SMK toxin, secreted by the halotolerant yeast Pichia farinosa KK1 strain, uniquely exhibits its maximum killer activity under conditions of acidic pH and high salt concentration. The toxin is composed of two distinct subunits, alpha and beta, which tightly interact with each other under acidic conditions. However, they are easily dissociated under neutral conditions and lose the killer activity. The three-dimensional structure of the SMK toxin will provide a better understanding of the mechanism of toxicity of this protein and the cause of its unique pH-dependent stability. Two crystal structures of the SMK toxin have been determined at 1.8 A resolution in different ionic strength conditions. The two subunits, alpha and beta, are jointly folded into an ellipsoidal, single domain structure belonging to the alpha/beta-sandwich family. The folding topology of the SMK toxin is essentially the same as that of the fungal killer toxin, KP4. This shared topology contains two left-handed split betaalphabeta motifs, which are rare in the other proteins. Many acidic residues are clustered at the bottom of the SMK toxin molecule. Some of the carboxyl sidechains interact with each other through hydrogen bonds. The ionic strength difference induces no evident structural change of the SMK toxin except that, in the high ionic strength crystal, a number of sulfate ions are electrostatically bound near the basic residues which are also locally distributed at the bottom of the toxin molecule. The two killer toxins, SMK and KP4, share a unique folding topology which contains a rare structural motif. This observation may suggest that these toxins are evolutionally and/or functionally related. The pH-dependent stability of the SMK toxin is a result of the intensive interactions between the carboxyl groups. This finding is important for protein engineering, for

  13. Miscellaneous chemical toxins

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Friend, M.

    1999-01-01

    The previous chapters provide information about some of the chemical toxins that have lethal effects on wild birds. The material presented in Section 7, Chemical Toxins, is far from comprehensive because wild birds are poisoned by a wide variety of toxic substances. Also, monitoring of wild bird mortality is not yet organized so that diagnostic findings can be extended to reflect the relative impacts among the types of toxins, within populations, or among species, geographic areas, and time. The data that are available are not collectively based on random sampling, nor do specimen collection and submission follow methodical assessment methods. Instead, most data simply document individual bird poisoning events. The inherent biases in this information include the species of birds observed dead (large birds in open areas are more likely to be observed dead than small forest birds); the species of birds likely to be submitted for analysis (bald eagles are more likely to be submitted than house sparrows); collection sites (agricultural fields are more likely to be observed than urban environments); geographic area of the country; season; reasons for submissions; and other variables. Nevertheless, findings from individual events reflect the causes of mortality associated with those events and collectively identify chemical toxins that repeatedly cause bird mortalities which result in carcass collection and sub

  14. Nanoparticle-detained toxins for safe and effective vaccination

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Che-Ming J.; Fang, Ronnie H.; Luk, Brian T.; Zhang, Liangfang

    2013-12-01

    Toxoid vaccines--vaccines based on inactivated bacterial toxins--are routinely used to promote antitoxin immunity for the treatment and prevention of bacterial infections. Following chemical or heat denaturation, inactivated toxins can be administered to mount toxin-specific immune responses. However, retaining faithful antigenic presentation while removing toxin virulence remains a major challenge and presents a trade-off between efficacy and safety in toxoid development. Here, we show a nanoparticle-based toxin-detainment strategy that safely delivers non-disrupted pore-forming toxins for immune processing. Using erythrocyte membrane-coated nanoparticles and staphylococcal α-haemolysin, we demonstrate effective virulence neutralization via spontaneous particle entrapment. Compared with vaccination with heat-denatured toxin, mice vaccinated with the nanoparticle-detained toxin showed superior protective immunity against toxin-mediated adverse effects. We find that the non-disruptive detoxification approach benefited the immunogenicity and efficacy of toxoid vaccines. We anticipate that this study will open new possibilities in the preparation of antitoxin vaccines against the many virulence factors that threaten public health.

  15. Sea Anemone (Cnidaria, Anthozoa, Actiniaria) Toxins: An Overview

    PubMed Central

    Frazão, Bárbara; Vasconcelos, Vitor; Antunes, Agostinho

    2012-01-01

    The Cnidaria phylum includes organisms that are among the most venomous animals. The Anthozoa class includes sea anemones, hard corals, soft corals and sea pens. The composition of cnidarian venoms is not known in detail, but they appear to contain a variety of compounds. Currently around 250 of those compounds have been identified (peptides, proteins, enzymes and proteinase inhibitors) and non-proteinaceous substances (purines, quaternary ammonium compounds, biogenic amines and betaines), but very few genes encoding toxins were described and only a few related protein three-dimensional structures are available. Toxins are used for prey acquisition, but also to deter potential predators (with neurotoxicity and cardiotoxicity effects) and even to fight territorial disputes. Cnidaria toxins have been identified on the nematocysts located on the tentacles, acrorhagi and acontia, and in the mucous coat that covers the animal body. Sea anemone toxins comprise mainly proteins and peptides that are cytolytic or neurotoxic with its potency varying with the structure and site of action and are efficient in targeting different animals, such as insects, crustaceans and vertebrates. Sea anemones toxins include voltage-gated Na+ and K+ channels toxins, acid-sensing ion channel toxins, Cytolysins, toxins with Kunitz-type protease inhibitors activity and toxins with Phospholipase A2 activity. In this review we assessed the phylogentic relationships of sea anemone toxins, characterized such toxins, the genes encoding them and the toxins three-dimensional structures, further providing a state-of-the-art description of the procedures involved in the isolation and purification of bioactive toxins. PMID:23015776

  16. Sea anemone (Cnidaria, Anthozoa, Actiniaria) toxins: an overview.

    PubMed

    Frazão, Bárbara; Vasconcelos, Vitor; Antunes, Agostinho

    2012-08-01

    The Cnidaria phylum includes organisms that are among the most venomous animals. The Anthozoa class includes sea anemones, hard corals, soft corals and sea pens. The composition of cnidarian venoms is not known in detail, but they appear to contain a variety of compounds. Currently around 250 of those compounds have been identified (peptides, proteins, enzymes and proteinase inhibitors) and non-proteinaceous substances (purines, quaternary ammonium compounds, biogenic amines and betaines), but very few genes encoding toxins were described and only a few related protein three-dimensional structures are available. Toxins are used for prey acquisition, but also to deter potential predators (with neurotoxicity and cardiotoxicity effects) and even to fight territorial disputes. Cnidaria toxins have been identified on the nematocysts located on the tentacles, acrorhagi and acontia, and in the mucous coat that covers the animal body. Sea anemone toxins comprise mainly proteins and peptides that are cytolytic or neurotoxic with its potency varying with the structure and site of action and are efficient in targeting different animals, such as insects, crustaceans and vertebrates. Sea anemones toxins include voltage-gated Na⁺ and K⁺ channels toxins, acid-sensing ion channel toxins, Cytolysins, toxins with Kunitz-type protease inhibitors activity and toxins with Phospholipase A2 activity. In this review we assessed the phylogentic relationships of sea anemone toxins, characterized such toxins, the genes encoding them and the toxins three-dimensional structures, further providing a state-of-the-art description of the procedures involved in the isolation and purification of bioactive toxins.

  17. Ricin detection: tracking active toxin.

    PubMed

    Bozza, William P; Tolleson, William H; Rivera Rosado, Leslie A; Zhang, Baolin

    2015-01-01

    Ricin is a plant toxin with high bioterrorism potential due to its natural abundance and potency in inducing cell death. Early detection of the active toxin is essential for developing appropriate countermeasures. Here we review concepts for designing ricin detection methods, including mechanism of action of the toxin, advantages and disadvantages of current detection assays, and perspectives on the future development of rapid and reliable methods for detecting ricin in environmental samples. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  18. Multiplex detection of protein toxins using MALDI-TOF-TOF tandem mass spectrometry: application in unambiguous toxin detection from bioaerosol.

    PubMed

    Alam, Syed Imteyaz; Kumar, Bhoj; Kamboj, Dev Vrat

    2012-12-04

    Protein toxins, such as botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs), Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin (ETX), staphylococcal enterotoxin B (SEB), shiga toxin (STX), and plant toxin ricin, are involved in a number of diseases and are considered as potential agents for bioterrorism and warfare. From a bioterrorism and warfare perspective, these agents are likely to cause maximum damage to a civilian or military population through an inhalational route of exposure and aerosol is considered the envisaged mode of delivery. Unambiguous detection of toxin from aerosol is of paramount importance, both for bringing mitigation protocols into operation and for implementation of effective medical countermeasures, in case a "biological cloud" is seen over a population. A multiplex, unambiguous, and qualitative detection of protein toxins is reported here using tandem mass spectrometry with MALDI-TOF-TOF. The methodology involving simple sample processing steps was demonstrated to identify toxins (ETX, Clostridium perfringes phospholipase C, and SEB) from blind spiked samples. The novel directed search approach using a list of unique peptides was used to identify toxins from a complex protein mixture. The bioinformatic analysis of seven protein toxins for elucidation of unique peptides with conservation status across all known sequences provides a high confidence for detecting toxins originating from any geographical location and source organism. Use of tandem MS data with peptide sequence information increases the specificity of the method. A prototype for generation of aerosol using a nebulizer and collection using a cyclone collector was used to provide a proof of concept for unambiguous detection of toxin from aerosol using precursor directed tandem mass spectrometry combined with protein database searching. ETX prototoxin could be detected from aerosol at 0.2 ppb concentration in aerosol.

  19. Marine and freshwater toxins.

    PubMed

    Hungerford, James M

    2006-01-01

    In a very busy and exciting year, 2005 included First Action approval of a much needed official method for paralytic shellfish toxins and multiple international toxin symposia highlighted by groundbreaking research. These are the first-year milestones and activities of the Marine and Freshwater Toxins Task Force and Analytical Community. Inaugurated in 2004 and described in detail in last year's General Referee Report (1) this international toxins group has grown to 150 members from many regions and countries. Perhaps most important they are now making important and global contributions to food safety and to providing alternatives to animal-based assays. Official Method 2005.06 was first approved in late 2004 by the Task Force and subsequently Official First Action in 2005 (2) by the Methods Committee on Natural Toxins and Food Allergens and the Official Methods Board. This nonproprietary method (3) is a precolumn oxidation, liquid chromatographic method that makes good use of fluorescence detection to provide high sensitivity detection of the saxitoxins. It has also proven to be rugged enough for regulatory use and the highest level of validation. As pointed out in the report of method principle investigator and Study Director James Lawrence, approval of 2005.06 now provides the first official alternative to the mouse bioassay after many decades of shellfish monitoring. This past year in April 2005 the group also held their first international conference, "Marine and Freshwater Toxins Analysis: Ist Joint Symposium and AOAC Task Force Meeting," in Baiona, Spain. The 4-day conference consisted of research and stakeholder presentations and symposium-integrated subgroup sessions on ciguatoxins, saxitoxin assays and liquid chromatography (LC) methods for saxitoxins and domoic acids, okadaiates and azaspiracids, and yessotoxins. Many of these subgroups were recently formed in 2005 and are working towards their goals of producing officially validated analytical methods

  20. Role of Botulinum Toxin in Depression.

    PubMed

    Parsaik, Ajay K; Mascarenhas, Sonia S; Hashmi, Aqeel; Prokop, Larry J; John, Vineeth; Okusaga, Olaoluwa; Singh, Balwinder

    2016-03-01

    The goal of this review was to consolidate the evidence concerning the efficacy of botulinum toxin type A (onabotulinumtoxinA) in depression. We searched MEDLINE, EMBASE, Cochrane, and Scopus through May 5, 2014, for studies evaluating the efficacy of botulinum toxin A in depression. Only randomized controlled trials were included in the meta-analysis. A pooled mean difference in primary depression score, and pooled odds ratio for response and remission rate with 95% confidence interval (CI) were estimated using the random-effects model. Heterogeneity was assessed using Cochran Q test and χ statistic. Of the 639 articles that were initially retrieved, 5 studies enrolling 194 subjects (age 49±9.6 y) were included in the systematic review, and 3 randomized controlled trials enrolling 134 subjects were included in the meta-analysis. The meta-analysis showed a significant decrease in mean primary depression scores among patients who received botulinum toxin A compared with placebo (-9.80; 95% CI, -12.90 to -6.69) with modest heterogeneity between the studies (Cochran Q test, χ=70). Response and remission rates were 8.3 and 4.6 times higher, respectively, among patients receiving botulinum toxin A compared with placebo, with no heterogeneity between the studies. The 2 studies excluded from the meta-analysis also found a significant decrease in primary depression scores in patients after receiving botulinum toxin A. A few subjects had minor side effects, which were similar between the groups receiving botulinum toxin and those receiving placebo. This study suggests that botulinum toxin A can produce significant improvement in depressive symptoms and is a safe adjunctive treatment for patients receiving pharmacotherapy for depression. Future trials are needed to evaluate the antidepressant effect per se of botulinum toxin A and to further elucidate the underlying antidepressant mechanism of botulinum toxin A.

  1. Emerging insights into the biology of typhoid toxin

    PubMed Central

    Fowler, Casey C.; Chang, Shu-Jung; Gao, Xiang; Geiger, Tobias; Stack, Gabrielle; Galán, Jorge E.

    2017-01-01

    Typhoid toxin is a unique A2B5 exotoxin and an important virulence factor for Salmonella Typhi, the cause of typhoid fever. In the decade since its initial discovery, great strides have been made in deciphering the unusual biological program of this toxin, which is fundamentally different from related toxins in many ways. Purified typhoid toxin administered to laboratory animals causes many of the symptoms of typhoid fever, suggesting that typhoid toxin is a central factor in this disease. Further advances in understanding the biology of this toxin will help guide the development of badly needed diagnostics and therapeutic interventions that target this toxin to detect, prevent or treat typhoid fever. PMID:28213043

  2. Botulinum toxin therapy for limb dystonias.

    PubMed

    Yoshimura, D M; Aminoff, M J; Olney, R K

    1992-03-01

    We investigated the effectiveness of botulinum toxin in 17 patients with limb dystonias (10 with occupational cramps, three with idiopathic dystonia unrelated to activity, and two each with post-stroke and parkinsonian dystonia) in a placebo-controlled, blinded study. We identified affected muscles clinically and by recording the EMG from implanted wire electrodes at rest and during performance of tasks that precipitated abnormal postures. There were three injections given with graded doses of toxin (average doses, 5 to 10, 10 to 20, and 20 to 40 units per muscle) and one with placebo, in random order. Subjective improvement occurred after 53% of injections of botulinum toxin, and this was substantial in 24%. Only one patient (7%) improved after placebo injection. Subjective improvement occurred in 82% of patients with at least one dose of toxin, lasting for 1 to 4 months. Response rates were similar between clinical groups. Objective evaluation failed to demonstrate significant improvement following treatment with toxin compared with placebo. The major side effect was transient focal weakness after 53% of injections of toxin.

  3. Anthrax toxin.

    PubMed

    Bhatnagar, R; Batra, S

    2001-01-01

    Anthrax is primarily a disease of herbivores caused by gram-positive, aerobic, spore-forming Bacillus anthracis. Humans are accidental hosts through the food of animal origin and animal products. Anthrax is prevelant in most parts of the globe, and cases of anthrax have been reported from almost every country. Three forms of the disease have been recognized: cutaneous (through skin), gastrointestinal (through alimentary tract), and pulmonary (by inhalation of spores). The major virulence factors of Bacillus anthracis are a poly-D glutamic acid capsule and a three-component protein exotoxin. The genes coding for the toxin and the enzymes responsible for capsule production are carried on plasmid pXO1 and pXO2, respectively. The three proteins of the exotoxin are protective antigen (PA, 83 kDa), lethal factor (LF, 90 kDa), and edema factor (EF, 89 kDa). The toxins follow the A-B model with PA being the B moeity and LF/EF, the alternative A moeities. LF and EF are individually nontoxic, but in combination with PA form two toxins causing different pathogenic responses in animals and cultured cells. PA + LF forms the lethal toxin and PA + EF forms the edema toxin. During the process of intoxication, PA binds to the cell surface receptor and is cleaved at the sequence RKKR (167) by cell surface proteases such as furin generating a cell-bound, C-terminal 63 kDa protein (PA63). PA63 possesses a binding site to which LF or EF bind with high affinity. The complex is then internalized by receptor-mediated endocytosis. Acidification of the vesicle leads to instertion of PA63 into the endosomal membrane and translocation of LF/EF across the bilayer into the cytosol where they exert their toxic effects. EF has a calcium- and calmodulin-dependent adenylate cyclase activity. Recent reports indicate that LF is a protease that cleaves the amino terminus of mitogen-activated protein kinase kinases 1 and 2 (MAPKK1 and 2), and this cleavage inactivates MAPKK1 and thus inhibits the

  4. Partial purification of a toxin found in hamsters with antibiotic-associated colitis. Reversible binding of the toxin by cholestyramine.

    PubMed

    Humphrey, C D; Condon, C W; Cantey, J R; Pittman, F E

    1979-03-01

    A toxin with cytotoxic and enterotoxic activities was isolated from cecal contents of hamsters receiving lincomycin. The toxin was partially purified by ultracentrifugation, ultrafiltration, (NH4)2SO4 precipitation, and gel filtration. Cytotoxic activity, assayed on monolayers of HeLa cells, was restricted to material that eluted in the molecular weight range of 107,000 +/- 6,000 daltons. Cytotoxicity of crude AAC toxin could be demonstrated at concentrations as low as 0.04 microgram/ml. The toxin was heat labile (55 degrees-60 degrees C for 0.5 hr) and sensitive to trypsinization, acidification at pH 3, or alkalinization at pH 9. Cytotoxic activity was inhibited by Clostridium sordellii antitoxin. Enterotoxic activity of the crude toxin and the cytotoxic fraction from gel filtration was demonstrated by fluid secretion in ligated rabbit ileal loops. Studies were done in vitro with cholestyramine resin, vancomycin, or gentamicin to determine if the toxin was bound or denatured by these drugs. It was demonstrated that cholestyramine bound the toxin, significantly reducing its cytotoxicity. Reversible binding of the cytotoxic material was demonstrated by salt gradient elution. Neither vancomycin nor gentamicin had any effect on the in vitro cytotoxic activity of the toxin.

  5. Marine Neurotoxins: Ingestible Toxins.

    PubMed

    Stommel, Elijah W.; Watters, Michael R.

    2004-03-01

    Fish and shellfish account for a significant portion of food-borne illnesses throughout the world. In general, three classes of diseases result from seafood consumption--intoxication, allergies, and infections. In this review, the authors discuss several seafood-borne toxins, including domoic acid, which acts on the central nervous system. In addition, the authors discuss ciguatoxin-, brevetoxin-, saxitoxin-, tetrodotoxin-, and scombroid-related histamine toxicity, all of which act primarily on the peripheral nervous system. Fish has become a very popular food in the US mostly related to its potential health benefits. Fish is consumed to such a degree that fishing stocks are reportedly at an all time low from what seemed like an endless supply even 30 years ago. One of the most significant threats to human intoxication is the recreational harvest of shellfish, often times located in remote locations where the harvesters are subsistent on fishery resources and have no monitoring in place. The hazard to intoxication is not as common in purchased seafood, which is more stringently regulated, yet still is a serious problem. Most ingestible toxins are thermo-stable and therefore unaffected by cooking, freezing, or salting. Air transport of consumable products throughout the world makes it easy to obtain exotic edibles from far away countries. A seemingly unusual toxin can be more commonly encountered than previously thought and it is important to consider this when evaluating patients. Recognition and treatment of various neurologic symptoms related to seafood ingestion is paramount in today's mobile, gastronomic world. Specific treatments vary with each individual toxin and with the individual's specific reaction to the toxin. Generally, some degree of medical care is required with all ingestible toxin exposure, ranging from simple administration of medication and hydration to ventilatory and cardiovascular support.

  6. Novel bacterial ADP-ribosylating toxins: structure and function

    PubMed Central

    Simon, Nathan C.; Aktories, Klaus; Barbieri, Joseph T.

    2018-01-01

    Preface Bacterial ADP-ribosyltransferase toxins (bARTTs) transfer ADP-ribose to eukaryotic proteins to promote bacterial pathogenesis. In this review we use prototype bARTTs, such as diphtheria and pertussis toxins, as references for the characterization of several new bARTTs from human, insect, and plant pathogens, which were identified recently through bioinformatic analyses. Several of these toxins, including Cholix toxin from Vibrio cholerae, SpyA from Streptococcus pyogenes, HopU1 from Pseudomonas syringae, and the Tcc toxins from Photorhabdus luminescens, ADP-ribosylate novel substrates and possess unique organizations, which distinguish them from the reference toxins. The characterization of these toxins extends our appreciation for the variety of structure-function properties possessed by bARTTs and their roles in bacterial pathogenesis. PMID:25023120

  7. Military Importance of Natural Toxins and Their Analogs.

    PubMed

    Pitschmann, Vladimír; Hon, Zdeněk

    2016-04-28

    Toxin weapon research, development, production and the ban on its uses is an integral part of international law, with particular attention paid to the protection against these weapons. In spite of this, hazards associated with toxins cannot be completely excluded. Some of these hazards are also pointed out in the present review. The article deals with the characteristics and properties of natural toxins and synthetic analogs potentially constituting the basis of toxin weapons. It briefly describes the history of military research and the use of toxins from distant history up to the present age. With respect to effective disarmament conventions, it mentions certain contemporary concepts of possible toxin applications for military purposes and the protection of public order (suppression of riots); it also briefly refers to the question of terrorism. In addition, it deals with certain traditional as well as modern technologies of the research, synthesis, and use of toxins, which can affect the continuing development of toxin weapons. These are, for example, cases of new toxins from natural sources, their chemical synthesis, production of synthetic analogs, the possibility of using methods of genetic engineering and modern biotechnologies or the possible applications of nanotechnology and certain pharmaceutical methods for the effective transfer of toxins into the organism. The authors evaluate the military importance of toxins based on their comparison with traditional chemical warfare agents. They appeal to the ethics of the scientific work as a principal condition for the prevention of toxin abuse in wars, military conflicts, as well as in non-military attacks.

  8. Isolation and characterisation of 13 pterosins and pterosides from bracken (Pteridium aquilinum (L.) Kuhn) rhizome.

    PubMed

    Mohammad, Rizgar Hassan; Nur-E-Alam, Mohammad; Lahmann, Martina; Parveen, Ifat; Tizzard, Graham J; Coles, Simon J; Fowler, Mark; Drake, Alex F; Heyes, Derren; Thoss, Vera

    2016-08-01

    Systematic phytochemical investigations of the underground rhizome of Pteridium aquilinum (L.) Kuhn (Dennstaedtiaceae) afforded thirty-five pterosins and pterosides. By detailed analysis of one- and two-dimensional nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, circular dichroism (CD) and high-resolution mass spectrometric data, thirteen previously undescribed pterosins and pterosides have been identified. Interestingly, for the first time 12-O-β-D-glucopyranoside substituted pterosins, rhedynosides C and D, and the sulfate-containing pterosin, rhedynosin H, alongside the two known compounds, histiopterosin A and (2S)-pteroside A2, were isolated from the rhizomes of subsp. aquilinum of bracken. In addition, six-membered cyclic ether pterosins and pterosides, rhedynosin A and rhedynoside A, are the first examples of this type of pterosin-sesquiterpenoid. Additionally, the three previously reported compounds (rhedynosin I, (2S)-2-hydroxymethylpterosin E and (2S)-12-hydroxypterosin A) were obtained for the first time from plants as opposed to mammalian metabolic products. Single crystal X-ray diffraction analysis was applied to the previously undescribed compounds (2R)-rhedynoside B, (2R)-pteroside B and (2S)-pteroside K, yielding the first crystal structures for pterosides, and three known pterosins, (2S)-pterosin A, trans-pterosin C and cis-pterosin C. Rhedynosin C is the only example of the cyclic lactone pterosins with a keto group at position C-14. Six selected pterosins ((2S)-pterosin A, (2R)-pterosin B and trans-pterosin C) and associated glycosides ((2S)-pteroside A, (2R)-pteroside B and pteroside Z) were assessed for their anti-diabetic activity using an intestinal glucose uptake assay; all were found to be inactive at 300 μM. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. A New Type of Toxin A-Negative, Toxin B-Positive Clostridium difficile Strain Lacking a Complete tcdA Gene

    PubMed Central

    Marín, Mercedes; Martín, Adoración; Rupnik, Maja

    2014-01-01

    Toxins A and B are the main virulence factors of Clostridium difficile and are the targets for molecular diagnostic tests. Here, we describe a new toxin A-negative, toxin B-positive, binary toxin CDT (Clostridium difficile transferase)-negative (A− B+ CDT−) toxinotype (XXXII) characterized by a variant type of pathogenicity locus (PaLoc) without tcdA and with atypical organization of the PaLoc integration site. PMID:25428159

  10. Toxins of filamentous fungi.

    PubMed

    Bhatnagar, Deepak; Yu, Jiujiang; Ehrlich, Kenneth C

    2002-01-01

    Mycotoxins are low-molecular-weight secondary metabolites of fungi. The most significant mycotoxins are contaminants of agricultural commodities, foods and feeds. Fungi that produce these toxins do so both prior to harvest and during storage. Although contamination of commodities by toxigenic fungi occurs frequently in areas with a hot and humid climate (i.e. conditions favorable for fungal growth), they can also be found in temperate conditions. Production of mycotoxins is dependent upon the type of producing fungus and environmental conditions such as the substrate, water activity (moisture and relative humidity), duration of exposure to stress conditions and microbial, insect or other animal interactions. Although outbreaks of mycotoxicoses in humans have been documented, several of these have not been well characterized, neither has a direct correlation between the mycotoxin and resulting toxic effect been well established in vivo. Even though the specific modes of action of most of the toxins are not well established, acute and chronic effects in prokaryotic and eukaryotic systems, including humans have been reported. The toxicity of the mycotoxins varies considerably with the toxin, the animal species exposed to it, and the extent of exposure, age and nutritional status. Most of the toxic effects of mycotoxins are limited to specific organs, but several mycotoxins affect many organs. Induction of cancer by some mycotoxins is a major concern as a chronic effect of these toxins. It is nearly impossible to eliminate mycotoxins from the foods and feed in spite of the regulatory efforts at the national and international levels to remove the contaminated commodities. This is because mycotoxins are highly stable compounds, the producing fungi are ubiquitous, and food contamination can occur both before and after harvest. Nevertheless, good farm management practices and adequate storage facilities minimize the toxin contamination problems. Current research is

  11. Differential Requirement for the Translocation of Clostridial Binary Toxins: Iota Toxin Requires a Membrane Potential Gradient

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-02-28

    be inter- changed to form biologically-active, hybrid toxins. Thereby, Ib can internalize the enzymatic components from either C. spiroforme or C...since chloro- quine, monensin, nigericin, or ammonium chloride did not in- hibit its activity (Fig. 2A). C. spiroforme toxin, which is very highly...ER [50]. These results are in agreement with a recent report [15], and an earlier finding [45] that there was no effect of C. spiroforme toxin when

  12. Toxin Detection by Surface Plasmon Resonance

    PubMed Central

    Hodnik, Vesna; Anderluh, Gregor

    2009-01-01

    Significant efforts have been invested in the past years for the development of analytical methods for fast toxin detection in food and water. Immunochemical methods like ELISA, spectroscopy and chromatography are the most used in toxin detection. Different methods have been linked, e.g. liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry (LC-MS), in order to detect as low concentrations as possible. Surface plasmon resonance (SPR) is one of the new biophysical methods which enables rapid toxin detection. Moreover, this method was already included in portable sensors for on-site determinations. In this paper we describe some of the most common methods for toxin detection, with an emphasis on SPR. PMID:22573957

  13. Identification of the cellular receptor of Clostridium spiroforme toxin.

    PubMed

    Papatheodorou, Panagiotis; Wilczek, Claudia; Nölke, Thilo; Guttenberg, Gregor; Hornuss, Daniel; Schwan, Carsten; Aktories, Klaus

    2012-04-01

    Clostridium spiroforme produces the binary actin-ADP-ribosylating toxin CST (C. spiroforme toxin), which has been proposed to be responsible for diarrhea, enterocolitis, and eventually death, especially in rabbits. Here we report on the recombinant production of the enzyme component (CSTa) and the binding component (CSTb) of C. spiroforme toxin in Bacillus megaterium. By using the recombinant toxin components, we show that CST enters target cells via the lipolysis-stimulated lipoprotein receptor (LSR), which has been recently identified as the host cell receptor of the binary toxins Clostridium difficile transferase (CDT) and Clostridium perfringens iota toxin. Microscopic studies revealed that CST, but not the related Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin, colocalized with LSR during toxin uptake and traffic to endosomal compartments. Our findings indicate that CST shares LSR with C. difficile CDT and C. perfringens iota toxin as a host cell surface receptor.

  14. Identification of the Cellular Receptor of Clostridium spiroforme Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Papatheodorou, Panagiotis; Wilczek, Claudia; Nölke, Thilo; Guttenberg, Gregor; Hornuss, Daniel; Schwan, Carsten

    2012-01-01

    Clostridium spiroforme produces the binary actin-ADP-ribosylating toxin CST (C. spiroforme toxin), which has been proposed to be responsible for diarrhea, enterocolitis, and eventually death, especially in rabbits. Here we report on the recombinant production of the enzyme component (CSTa) and the binding component (CSTb) of C. spiroforme toxin in Bacillus megaterium. By using the recombinant toxin components, we show that CST enters target cells via the lipolysis-stimulated lipoprotein receptor (LSR), which has been recently identified as the host cell receptor of the binary toxins Clostridium difficile transferase (CDT) and Clostridium perfringens iota toxin. Microscopic studies revealed that CST, but not the related Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin, colocalized with LSR during toxin uptake and traffic to endosomal compartments. Our findings indicate that CST shares LSR with C. difficile CDT and C. perfringens iota toxin as a host cell surface receptor. PMID:22252869

  15. Toxin-Antitoxin Systems as Multilevel Interaction Systems

    PubMed Central

    Goeders, Nathalie; Van Melderen, Laurence

    2014-01-01

    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are small genetic modules usually composed of a toxin and an antitoxin counteracting the activity of the toxic protein. These systems are widely spread in bacterial and archaeal genomes. TA systems have been assigned many functions, ranging from persistence to DNA stabilization or protection against mobile genetic elements. They are classified in five types, depending on the nature and mode of action of the antitoxin. In type I and III, antitoxins are RNAs that either inhibit the synthesis of the toxin or sequester it. In type II, IV and V, antitoxins are proteins that either sequester, counterbalance toxin activity or inhibit toxin synthesis. In addition to these interactions between the antitoxin and toxin components (RNA-RNA, protein-protein, RNA-protein), TA systems interact with a variety of cellular factors, e.g., toxins target essential cellular components, antitoxins are degraded by RNAses or ATP-dependent proteases. Hence, TA systems have the capacity to interact with each other at different levels. In this review, we will discuss the different interactions in which TA systems are involved and their implications in TA system functions and evolution. PMID:24434905

  16. Proteomic Methods of Detection and Quantification of Protein Toxins.

    PubMed

    Duracova, Miloslava; Klimentova, Jana; Fucikova, Alena; Dresler, Jiri

    2018-02-28

    Biological toxins are a heterogeneous group of compounds that share commonalities with biological and chemical agents. Among them, protein toxins represent a considerable, diverse set. They cover a broad range of molecular weights from less than 1000 Da to more than 150 kDa. This review aims to compare conventional detection methods of protein toxins such as in vitro bioassays with proteomic methods, including immunoassays and mass spectrometry-based techniques and their combination. Special emphasis is given to toxins falling into a group of selected agents, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, such as Staphylococcal enterotoxins , Bacillus anthracis toxins, Clostridium botulinum toxins, Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin, ricin from Ricinus communis , Abrin from Abrus precatorius or control of trade in dual-use items in the European Union, including lesser known protein toxins such as Viscumin from Viscum album . The analysis of protein toxins and monitoring for biological threats, i.e., the deliberate spread of infectious microorganisms or toxins through water, food, or the air, requires rapid and reliable methods for the early identification of these agents.

  17. Proteomic Methods of Detection and Quantification of Protein Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Klimentova, Jana; Fucikova, Alena

    2018-01-01

    Biological toxins are a heterogeneous group of compounds that share commonalities with biological and chemical agents. Among them, protein toxins represent a considerable, diverse set. They cover a broad range of molecular weights from less than 1000 Da to more than 150 kDa. This review aims to compare conventional detection methods of protein toxins such as in vitro bioassays with proteomic methods, including immunoassays and mass spectrometry-based techniques and their combination. Special emphasis is given to toxins falling into a group of selected agents, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, such as Staphylococcal enterotoxins, Bacillus anthracis toxins, Clostridium botulinum toxins, Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin, ricin from Ricinus communis, Abrin from Abrus precatorius or control of trade in dual-use items in the European Union, including lesser known protein toxins such as Viscumin from Viscum album. The analysis of protein toxins and monitoring for biological threats, i.e., the deliberate spread of infectious microorganisms or toxins through water, food, or the air, requires rapid and reliable methods for the early identification of these agents. PMID:29495560

  18. Crystallization of isoelectrically homogeneous cholera toxin

    SciTech Connect

    Spangler, B.D.; Westbrook, E.M.

    1989-02-07

    Past difficulty in growing good crystals of cholera toxin has prevented the study of the crystal structure of this important protein. The authors have determined that failure of cholera toxin to crystallize well has been due to its heterogeneity. They have now succeeded in overcoming the problem by isolating a single isoelectric variant of this oligomeric protein (one A subunit and five B subunits). Cholera toxin purified by their procedure readily forms large single crystals. The crystal form has been described previously. They have recorded data from native crystals of cholera toxin to 3.0-{angstrom} resolution with our electronic area detectors.more » With these data, they have found the orientation of a 5-fold symmetry axis within these crystals, perpendicular to the screw dyad of the crystal. They are now determining the crystal structure of cholera toxin by a combination of multiple heavy-atom isomorphous replacement and density modification techniques, making use of rotational 5-fold averaging of the B subunits.« less

  19. Botulinum toxin in trigeminal neuralgia.

    PubMed

    Castillo-Álvarez, Federico; Hernando de la Bárcena, Ignacio; Marzo-Sola, María Eugenia

    2017-01-06

    Trigeminal neuralgia is one of the most disabling facial pain syndromes, with a significant impact on patients' quality of life. Pharmacotherapy is the first choice for treatment but cases of drug resistance often require new strategies, among which various interventional treatments have been used. In recent years a new therapeutic strategy consisting of botulinum toxin has emerged, with promising results. We reviewed clinical cases and case series, open-label studies and randomized clinical trials examining the use of botulinum toxin for drug-refractory trigeminal neuralgia published in the literature. The administration of botulinum toxin has proven to be a safe and effective therapeutic strategy in patients with drug-refractory idiopathic trigeminal neuralgia, but many questions remain unanswered as to the precise role of botulinum toxin in the treatment of this disease. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  20. Collaborative Research Program on Seafood Toxins

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1988-08-14

    Crystallographic Structures of Saxitoxins Cl and C2 Appendix C: Collaborative Research Program an Seafcod Toxins Progress Report on Ciguatera and Related...radioimmunoassay for PSP were also evalumted. The Hokama stick test for ciguatera toxin was also evaluated. 4. initiate Studies on the Accumulation...tco•d which caie a form of b-mnn poisoning referred to as ciguatera . The respcnsible toxins originate from ll1ular rine algae of the division

  1. Legionella pneumophila Toxin, Isolation and Purification

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1981-01-01

    which dis- plays an in vivo lethality. The purification procedures involve acid precipitation, gel chromatography, and preparative isotachophoresis. The...Chymotrypsinogen A, Ribonuclease A, and Apoprotinin as markers. Preparation of antiserum One milliqram amounts of protein from Le jonella acid ...RESULTS Toxin isolation Step 1: Acid precipitation of crude toxin. 1.0 N HCl acid was slowly added to rapidly stirred crude toxin until pH 3.5 was

  2. Algal toxins

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Creekmore, Lynn H.

    1999-01-01

    Periodic blooms of algae, including true algae, dinoflagellates, and cyanobacteria or blue-green algae have been reported in marine and freshwater bodies throughout the world. Although many blooms are merely an aesthetic nuisance, some species of algae produce toxins that kill fish, shellfish, humans, livestock and wildlife. Pigmented blooms of toxinproducing marine algae are often referred to as “red tides” (Fig. 36.1). Proliferations of freshwater toxin-producing cyanobacteria are simply called “cyanobacterial blooms” or “toxic algal blooms.” Cyanobacterial blooms initially appear green and may later turn blue, sometimes forming a “scum” in the water (Fig. 36.2).Although algal blooms historically have been considered a natural phenomenon, the frequency of occurrence of harmful algae appears to have increased in recent years. Agricultural runoff and other pollutants of freshwater and marine wetlands and water bodies have resulted in increased nutrient loading of phosphorus and nitrogen, thus providing conditions favorable to the growth of potentially toxic algae. The detrimental impact of red tides and cyanobacterial blooms on wetland, shore, and pelagic species has long been suspected but not often been substantiated because information on the effects of these toxins in fish and wildlife species is lacking and diagnostic tools are limited.

  3. Allelopathy of Bracken Fern (Pteridium arachnoideum): New Evidence from Green Fronds, Litter, and Soil

    PubMed Central

    Juliano Gualtieri, Sonia Cristina; Rodrigues-Filho, Edson; Macías, Francisco Antonio

    2016-01-01

    The neotropical bracken fern Pteridium arachnoideum (Kaulf.) Maxon. (Dennstaedtiaceae) is described as an aggressive pioneer plant species. It invades abandoned or newly burned areas and represents a management challenge at these invaded sites. Native to the Atlantic Forest and Cerrado (Tropical Savanna) Brazilian biomes, P. arachnoideum has nevertheless become very problematic in these conservation hotspots. Despite some reports suggesting a possible role of allelopathy in this plant’s dominance, until now there has been little evidence of isolated and individually identified compounds with phytotoxic activities present in its tissues or in the surrounding environment. Thus, the aim of this study was to investigate the allelopathic potential of P. arachnoideum by isolating and identifying any secondary metabolites with phytotoxic activity in its tissues, litter, and soil. Bioguided phytochemical investigation led to the isolation and identification of the proanthocyanidin selligueain A as the major secondary compound in the green fronds and litter of this fern. It is produced by P. arachnoideum in its green fronds, remains unaltered during the senescence process, and is the major secondary compound present in litter. Selligueain A showed phytotoxic activity against the selected target species sesame (Sesamum indicum) early development. In particular, the compound inhibited root and stem growth, and root metaxylem cell size but did not affect chlorophyll content. This compound can be considered as an allelochemical because it is present in the soil under P. arachnoideum patches as one of the major compounds in the soil solution. This is the first report of the presence of selligueain A in any member of the Dennstaedtiaceae family and the first time an isolated and identified allelochemical produced by members of the Pteridium species complex has been described. This evidence of selligueain A as a putative allelochemical of P. arachnoideum reinforces the role of

  4. Botulinum Toxin: Pharmacology and Therapeutic Roles in Pain States.

    PubMed

    Patil, Shilpadevi; Willett, Olga; Thompkins, Terin; Hermann, Robert; Ramanathan, Sathish; Cornett, Elyse M; Fox, Charles J; Kaye, Alan David

    2016-03-01

    Botulinum toxin, also known as Botox, is produced by Clostridium botulinum, a gram-positive anaerobic bacterium, and botulinum toxin injections are among the most commonly practiced cosmetic procedures in the USA. Although botulinum toxin is typically associated with cosmetic procedures, it can be used to treat a variety of other conditions, including pain. Botulinum toxin blocks the release of acetylcholine from nerve endings to paralyze muscles and to decrease the pain response. Botulinum toxin has a long duration of action, lasting up to 5 months after initial treatment which makes it an excellent treatment for chronic pain patients. This manuscript will outline in detail why botulinum toxin is used as a successful treatment for pain in multiple conditions as well as outline the risks associated with using botulinum toxin in certain individuals. As of today, the only FDA-approved chronic condition that botulinum toxin can be used to treat is migraines and this is related to its ability to decrease muscle tension and increase muscle relaxation. Contraindications to botulinum toxin treatments are limited to a hypersensitivity to the toxin or an infection at the site of injection, and there are no known drug interactions with botulinum toxin. Botulinum toxin is an advantageous and effective alternative pain treatment and a therapy to consider for those that do not respond to opioid treatment. In summary, botulinum toxin is a relatively safe and effective treatment for individuals with certain pain conditions, including migraines. More research is warranted to elucidate chronic and long-term implications of botulinum toxin treatment as well as effects in pregnant, elderly, and adolescent patients.

  5. Tumor Targeting and Drug Delivery by Anthrax Toxin.

    PubMed

    Bachran, Christopher; Leppla, Stephen H

    2016-07-01

    Anthrax toxin is a potent tripartite protein toxin from Bacillus anthracis. It is one of the two virulence factors and causes the disease anthrax. The receptor-binding component of the toxin, protective antigen, needs to be cleaved by furin-like proteases to be activated and to deliver the enzymatic moieties lethal factor and edema factor to the cytosol of cells. Alteration of the protease cleavage site allows the activation of the toxin selectively in response to the presence of tumor-associated proteases. This initial idea of re-targeting anthrax toxin to tumor cells was further elaborated in recent years and resulted in the design of many modifications of anthrax toxin, which resulted in successful tumor therapy in animal models. These modifications include the combination of different toxin variants that require activation by two different tumor-associated proteases for increased specificity of toxin activation. The anthrax toxin system has proved to be a versatile system for drug delivery of several enzymatic moieties into cells. This highly efficient delivery system has recently been further modified by introducing ubiquitin as a cytosolic cleavage site into lethal factor fusion proteins. This review article describes the latest developments in this field of tumor targeting and drug delivery.

  6. Antibody-mediated inhibition of ricin toxin retrograde transport.

    PubMed

    Yermakova, Anastasiya; Klokk, Tove Irene; Cole, Richard; Sandvig, Kirsten; Mantis, Nicholas J

    2014-04-08

    Ricin is a member of the ubiquitous family of plant and bacterial AB toxins that gain entry into the cytosol of host cells through receptor-mediated endocytosis and retrograde traffic through the trans-Golgi network (TGN) and endoplasmic reticulum (ER). While a few ricin toxin-specific neutralizing monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) have been identified, the mechanisms by which these antibodies prevent toxin-induced cell death are largely unknown. Using immunofluorescence confocal microscopy and a TGN-specific sulfation assay, we demonstrate that 24B11, a MAb against ricin's binding subunit (RTB), associates with ricin in solution or when prebound to cell surfaces and then markedly enhances toxin uptake into host cells. Following endocytosis, however, toxin-antibody complexes failed to reach the TGN; instead, they were shunted to Rab7-positive late endosomes and LAMP-1-positive lysosomes. Monovalent 24B11 Fab fragments also interfered with toxin retrograde transport, indicating that neither cross-linking of membrane glycoproteins/glycolipids nor the recently identified intracellular Fc receptor is required to derail ricin en route to the TGN. Identification of the mechanism(s) by which antibodies like 24B11 neutralize ricin will advance our fundamental understanding of protein trafficking in mammalian cells and may lead to the discovery of new classes of toxin inhibitors and therapeutics for biodefense and emerging infectious diseases. IMPORTANCE Ricin is the prototypic member of the AB family of medically important plant and bacterial toxins that includes cholera and Shiga toxins. Ricin is also a category B biothreat agent. Despite ongoing efforts to develop vaccines and antibody-based therapeutics against ricin, very little is known about the mechanisms by which antibodies neutralize this toxin. In general, it is thought that antibodies simply prevent toxins from attaching to cell surface receptors or promote their clearance through Fc receptor (FcR)-mediated uptake

  7. TOXINS FROM CYANOBACTERIA IN WATER

    EPA Science Inventory

    This project is part of a larger U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) effort, which includes the Office of Water, to investigate algal toxins in surface water supplies and drinking water. Toxins produced by cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) are among the most potent known ...

  8. Can a toxin gene NAAT be used to predict toxin EIA and the severity of Clostridium difficile infection?

    PubMed

    Garvey, Mark I; Bradley, Craig W; Wilkinson, Martyn A C; Holden, Elisabeth

    2017-01-01

    Diagnosis of C. difficile infection (CDI) is controversial because of the many laboratory methods available and their lack of ability to distinguish between carriage, mild or severe disease. Here we describe whether a low C. difficile toxin B nucleic acid amplification test (NAAT) cycle threshold (CT) can predict toxin EIA, CDI severity and mortality. A three-stage algorithm was employed for CDI testing, comprising a screening test for glutamate dehydrogenase (GDH), followed by a NAAT, then a toxin enzyme immunoassay (EIA). All diarrhoeal samples positive for GDH and NAAT between 2012 and 2016 were analysed. The performance of the NAAT CT value as a classifier of toxin EIA outcome was analysed using a ROC curve; patient mortality was compared to CTs and toxin EIA via linear regression models. A CT value ≤26 was associated with ≥72% toxin EIA positivity; applying a logistic regression model we demonstrated an association between low CT values and toxin EIA positivity. A CT value of ≤26 was significantly associated ( p  = 0.0262) with increased one month mortality, severe cases of CDI or failure of first line treatment. The ROC curve probabilities demonstrated a CT cut off value of 26.6. Here we demonstrate that a CT ≤26 indicates more severe CDI and is associated with higher mortality. Samples with a low CT value are often toxin EIA positive, questioning the need for this additional EIA test. A CT ≤26 could be used to assess the potential for severity of CDI and guide patient treatment.

  9. Monoclonal antibodies and toxins--a perspective on function and isotype.

    PubMed

    Chow, Siu-Kei; Casadevall, Arturo

    2012-06-01

    Antibody therapy remains the only effective treatment for toxin-mediated diseases. The development of hybridoma technology has allowed the isolation of monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) with high specificity and defined properties, and numerous mAbs have been purified and characterized for their protective efficacy against different toxins. This review summarizes the mAb studies for 6 toxins--Shiga toxin, pertussis toxin, anthrax toxin, ricin toxin, botulinum toxin, and Staphylococcal enterotoxin B (SEB)--and analyzes the prevalence of mAb functions and their isotypes. Here we show that most toxin-binding mAbs resulted from immunization are non-protective and that mAbs with potential therapeutic use are preferably characterized. Various common practices and caveats of protection studies are discussed, with the goal of providing insights for the design of future research on antibody-toxin interactions.

  10. Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin--new insights into the cellular up-take of the actin-ADP-ribosylating toxin.

    PubMed

    Aktories, Klaus; Barth, Holger

    2004-04-01

    Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin is a member of the family of binary actin-ADP-ribosylating toxins. It consists of the enzyme component C2I, and the separated binding/translocation component C2II. Proteolytically activated C2II forms heptamers and binds to a carbohydrate cell surface receptor. After attachment of C2I, the toxin complex is endocytosed to reach early endosomes. At low pH of endosomes, C2II-heptamers insert into the membrane, form pores and deliver C2I into the cytosol. Here, C2I ADP-ribosylates actin at Arg177 to block actin polymerization and to induce depolymerization of actin filaments. The mini-review describes main properties of C2 toxin and discusses new findings on the involvement of chaperones in the up-take process of the toxin.

  11. Toxins That Affect Voltage-Gated Sodium Channels.

    PubMed

    Ji, Yonghua

    2017-10-26

    Voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSCs) are critical in generation and conduction of electrical signals in multiple excitable tissues. Natural toxins, produced by animal, plant, and microorganisms, target VGSCs through diverse strategies developed over millions of years of evolutions. Studying of the diverse interaction between VGSC and VGSC-targeting toxins has been contributing to the increasing understanding of molecular structure and function, pharmacology, and drug development potential of VGSCs. This chapter aims to summarize some of the current views on the VGSC-toxin interaction based on the established receptor sites of VGSC for natural toxins.

  12. Botulinum toxin for the treatment of bruxism.

    PubMed

    Tinastepe, Neslihan; Küçük, Burcu Bal; Oral, Koray

    2015-10-01

    Botulinum toxin, the most potent biological toxin, has been shown to be effective for a variety of disorders in several medical conditions, when used both therapeutically and cosmetically. In recent years, there has been a rising trend in the use of this pharmacological agent to control bruxing activity, despite its reported adverse effects. The aim of this review was to provide a brief overview to clarify the underlying essential ideas for the use of botulinum toxin in bruxism based on available scientific papers. An electronic literature search was performed to identify publications related to botulinum toxin and its use for bruxism in PubMed. Hand searching of relevant articles was also made to identify additional studies. Of the eleven identified studies, only two were randomized controlled trials, compared with the effectiveness of botulinum toxins on the reduction in the frequency of bruxism events and myofascial pain after injection. The authors of these studies concluded that botulinum toxin could be used as an effective treatment for reducing nocturnal bruxism and myofascial pain in patients with bruxism. Evidence-based research was limited on this topic. More randomized controlled studies are needed to confirm that botulinum toxin is safe and reliable for routine clinical use in bruxism.

  13. Botulinum toxin for the treatment of bruxism.

    PubMed

    Tinastepe, Neslihan; Küçük, Burcu Bal; Oral, Koray

    2014-08-14

    Aims: Botulinum toxin, the most potent biological toxin, has been shown to be effective for a variety of disorders in several medical conditions, when used both therapeutically and cosmetically. In recent years, there has been a rising trend in the use of this pharmacological agent to control bruxing activity, despite its reported adverse effects. The aim of this review was to provide a brief overview to clarify the underlying essential ideas for the use of botulinum toxin in bruxism based on available scientific papers. Methodology: An electronic literature search was performed to identify publications related to botulinum toxin and its use for bruxism in PubMed. Hand searching of relevant articles was also made to identify additional studies. Results: Of the eleven identified studies, only two were randomized controlled trials, compared with the effectiveness of botulinum toxins on the reduction in the frequency of bruxism events and myofascial pain after injection. The authors of these studies concluded that botulinum toxin could be used as an effective treatment for reducing nocturnal bruxism and myofascial pain in patients with bruxism. Conclusion: Evidence-based research was limited on this topic. More randomized controlled studies are needed to confirm that botulinum toxin is safe and reliable for routine clinical use in bruxism.

  14. Cyanobacterial toxins: risk management for health protection

    SciTech Connect

    Codd, Geoffrey A.; Morrison, Louise F.; Metcalf, James S

    2005-03-15

    This paper reviews the occurrence and properties of cyanobacterial toxins, with reference to the recognition and management of the human health risks which they may present. Mass populations of toxin-producing cyanobacteria in natural and controlled waterbodies include blooms and scums of planktonic species, and mats and biofilms of benthic species. Toxic cyanobacterial populations have been reported in freshwaters in over 45 countries, and in numerous brackish, coastal, and marine environments. The principal toxigenic genera are listed. Known sources of the families of cyanobacterial toxins (hepato-, neuro-, and cytotoxins, irritants, and gastrointestinal toxins) are briefly discussed. Key procedures in the riskmore » management of cyanobacterial toxins and cells are reviewed, including derivations (where sufficient data are available) of tolerable daily intakes (TDIs) and guideline values (GVs) with reference to the toxins in drinking water, and guideline levels for toxigenic cyanobacteria in bathing waters. Uncertainties and some gaps in knowledge are also discussed, including the importance of exposure media (animal and plant foods), in addition to potable and recreational waters. Finally, we present an outline of steps to develop and implement risk management strategies for cyanobacterial cells and toxins in waterbodies, with recent applications and the integration of Hazard Assessment Critical Control Point (HACCP) principles.« less

  15. Binding of Diphtheria Toxin to Phospholipids in Liposomes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alving, Carl R.; Iglewski, Barbara H.; Urban, Katharine A.; Moss, Joel; Richards, Roberta L.; Sadoff, Jerald C.

    1980-04-01

    Diphtheria toxin bound to the phosphate portion of some, but not all, phospholipids in liposomes. Liposomes consisting of dimyristoyl phosphatidylcholine and cholesterol did not bind toxin. Addition of 20 mol% (compared to dimyristoyl phosphatidylcholine) of dipalmitoyl phosphatidic acid, dicetyl phosphate, phosphatidylinositol phosphate, cardiolipin, or phosphatidylserine in the liposomes resulted in substantial binding of toxin. Inclusion of phosphatidylinositol in dimyristol phosphatidylcholine / cholesterol liposomes did not result in toxin binding. The calcium salt of dipalmitoyl phosphatidic acid was more effective than the sodium salt, and the highest level of binding occurred with liposomes consisting only of dipalmitoyl phosphatidic acid (calcium salt) and cholesterol. Binding of toxin to liposomes was dependent on pH, and the pattern of pH dependence varied with liposomes having different compositions. Incubation of diphtheria toxin with liposomes containing dicetyl phosphate resulted in maximal binding at pH 3.6, whereas binding to liposomes containing phosphatidylinositol phosphate was maximal above pH 7. Toxin did not bind to liposomes containing 20 mol% of a free fatty acid (palmitic acid) or a sulfated lipid (3-sulfogalactosylceramide). Toxin binding to dicetyl phosphate or phosphatidylinositol phosphate was inhibited by UTP, ATP, phosphocholine, or p-nitrophenyl phosphate, but not by uracil. We conclude that (a) diphtheria toxin binds specifically to the phosphate portion of certain phospholipids, (b) binding to phospholipids in liposomes is dependent on pH, but is not due only to electrostatic interaction, and (c) binding may be strongly influenced by the composition of adjacent phospholipids that do not bind toxin. We propose that a minor membrane phospholipid (such as phosphatidylinositol phosphate or phosphatidic acid), or that some other phosphorylated membrane molecule (such as a phosphoprotein) may be important in the initial binding of

  16. Drooling in Parkinson's disease: A randomized controlled trial of incobotulinum toxin A and meta-analysis of Botulinum toxins.

    PubMed

    Narayanaswami, Pushpa; Geisbush, Thomas; Tarulli, Andrew; Raynor, Elizabeth; Gautam, Shiva; Tarsy, Daniel; Gronseth, Gary

    2016-09-01

    Botulinum toxins are a therapeutic option for drooling in Parkinson's Disease (PD). The aims of this study were to: 1. evaluate the efficacy of incobotulinum toxin A for drooling in PD. 2. Perform a meta-analysis of studies of Botulinum toxins for drooling in PD. 1. Primary study: Randomized, double blind, placebo controlled, cross over trial. Incobotulinum toxin (100 units) or saline was injected into the parotid (20 units) and submandibular (30 units) glands. Subjects returned monthly for three evaluations after each injection. Outcome measures were saliva weight and Drooling Frequency and Severity Scale. 2. Systematic review of literature, followed by inverse variance meta-analyses using random effects models. 1. Primary Study: Nine of 10 subjects completed both arms. There was no significant change in the primary outcome of saliva weight one month after injection in the treatment period compared to placebo period (mean difference, gm ± SD: -0.194 ± 0.61, range: -1.28 to 0.97, 95% CI -0.71 to 0.32). Secondary outcomes also did not change. 2. Meta-analysis of six studies demonstrated significant benefit of Botulinum toxin on functional outcomes (effect size, Cohen's d: -1.32, CI -1.86 to -0.78). The other studies used a higher dose of Botulinum toxin A into the parotid glands. This study did not demonstrate efficacy of incobotulinum toxin A for drooling in PD, but lacked precision to exclude moderate benefit. The parotid/submandibular dose-ratio may have influenced results. Studies evaluating higher doses of incobotulinum toxin A into the parotid glands may be useful. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Array biosensor for detection of toxins

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ligler, Frances S.; Taitt, Chris Rowe; Shriver-Lake, Lisa C.; Sapsford, Kim E.; Shubin, Yura; Golden, Joel P.

    2003-01-01

    The array biosensor is capable of detecting multiple targets rapidly and simultaneously on the surface of a single waveguide. Sandwich and competitive fluoroimmunoassays have been developed to detect high and low molecular weight toxins, respectively, in complex samples. Recognition molecules (usually antibodies) were first immobilized in specific locations on the waveguide and the resultant patterned array was used to interrogate up to 12 different samples for the presence of multiple different analytes. Upon binding of a fluorescent analyte or fluorescent immunocomplex, the pattern of fluorescent spots was detected using a CCD camera. Automated image analysis was used to determine a mean fluorescence value for each assay spot and to subtract the local background signal. The location of the spot and its mean fluorescence value were used to determine the toxin identity and concentration. Toxins were measured in clinical fluids, environmental samples and foods, with minimal sample preparation. Results are shown for rapid analyses of staphylococcal enterotoxin B, ricin, cholera toxin, botulinum toxoids, trinitrotoluene, and the mycotoxin fumonisin. Toxins were detected at levels as low as 0.5 ng mL(-1).

  18. Botulinum toxin for the treatment of strabismus.

    PubMed

    Rowe, Fiona J; Noonan, Carmel P

    2017-03-02

    The use of botulinum toxin as an investigative and treatment modality for strabismus is well reported in the medical literature. However, it is unclear how effective it is in comparison to other treatment options for strabismus. The primary objective was to examine the efficacy of botulinum toxin therapy in the treatment of strabismus compared with alternative conservative or surgical treatment options. This review sought to ascertain those types of strabismus that particularly benefit from the use of botulinum toxin as a treatment option (such as small angle strabismus or strabismus with binocular potential, i.e. the potential to use both eyes together as a pair). The secondary objectives were to investigate the dose effect and complication rates associated with botulinum toxin. We searched CENTRAL (which contains the Cochrane Eyes and Vision Trials Register) (2016, Issue 6), Ovid MEDLINE, Ovid MEDLINE In-Process and Other Non-Indexed Citations, Ovid MEDLINE Daily, Ovid OLDMEDLINE (January 1946 to July 2016), Embase (January 1980 to July 2016), Latin American and Caribbean Literature on Health Sciences (LILACS) (January 1982 to July 2016), the ISRCTN registry (www.isrctn.com/editAdvancedSearch), ClinicalTrials.gov (www.clinicaltrials.gov), and the World Health Organization (WHO) International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP) (www.who.int/ictrp/search/en). We did not use any date or language restrictions in the electronic searches for trials. We last searched the electronic databases on 11 July 2016. We handsearched the British and Irish Orthoptic Journal, Australian Orthoptic Journal, proceedings of the European Strabismological Association (ESA), International Strabismological Association (ISA) and International Orthoptic Association (IOA) (www.liv.ac.uk/orthoptics/research/search.htm) and American Academy of Paediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus meetings (AAPOS). We contacted researchers who are active in this field for information about further

  19. Mechanisms of the cytopathic action of actin-ADP-ribosylating toxins.

    PubMed

    Aktories, K; Wegner, A

    1992-10-01

    Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin, Clostridium perfringens iota toxin, and Clostridium spiroforme toxin ADP-ribosylate actin monomers. Toxin-induced ADP-ribosylation disturbs the cellular equilibrium between monomeric and polymeric actin and traps monomeric actin in its unpolymerized form, thereby depolymerizing actin filaments and destroying the microfilament network. Furthermore, the toxins ADP-ribosylate gelsolin actin complexes. These modifications may contribute to the cytopathic action of the toxins.

  20. Botulinum Toxin Use in Pediatric Plastic Surgery.

    PubMed

    Fu, Katherine J; Teichgraeber, John F; Greives, Matthew R

    2016-11-01

    Botulinum toxin has increasingly become a prevalent treatment option for a wide range of conditions, many of which have their roots in plastic surgery and have been well studied. In adults, chronic headache, hyperhidrosis, and facial muscular hypertrophy have been effectively treated with botulinum toxin, and emerging studies have begun looking at its efficacy in children, as well. Successful treatment of spasticity and muscular contraction has allowed for the creation of safety profiles and dosage guidelines for botulinum toxin usage in children. The expanded indications for its use have since flourished in all arenas of pediatric care, including plastic surgery. Recent studies have described the use of botulinum toxin as an adjunct to the treatment of congenital torticollis and cleft lip. This review discusses the various applications of botulinum toxin for pediatric patients in the field of plastic surgery.

  1. Short toxin-like proteins abound in Cnidaria genomes.

    PubMed

    Tirosh, Yitshak; Linial, Itai; Askenazi, Manor; Linial, Michal

    2012-11-16

    Cnidaria is a rich phylum that includes thousands of marine species. In this study, we focused on Anthozoa and Hydrozoa that are represented by the Nematostella vectensis (Sea anemone) and Hydra magnipapillata genomes. We present a method for ranking the toxin-like candidates from complete proteomes of Cnidaria. Toxin-like functions were revealed using ClanTox, a statistical machine-learning predictor trained on ion channel inhibitors from venomous animals. Fundamental features that were emphasized in training ClanTox include cysteines and their spacing along the sequences. Among the 83,000 proteins derived from Cnidaria representatives, we found 170 candidates that fulfill the properties of toxin-like-proteins, the vast majority of which were previously unrecognized as toxins. An additional 394 short proteins exhibit characteristics of toxin-like proteins at a moderate degree of confidence. Remarkably, only 11% of the predicted toxin-like proteins were previously classified as toxins. Based on our prediction methodology and manual annotation, we inferred functions for over 400 of these proteins. Such functions include protease inhibitors, membrane pore formation, ion channel blockers and metal binding proteins. Many of the proteins belong to small families of paralogs. We conclude that the evolutionary expansion of toxin-like proteins in Cnidaria contributes to their fitness in the complex environment of the aquatic ecosystem.

  2. Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin inhibits the gastrointestinal transit in mice.

    PubMed

    Losada-Eaton, D M; Fernandez-Miyakawa, M E

    2010-12-01

    Epsilon toxin produced by Clostridium perfringens type B and D is a potent toxin that is responsible for a highly fatal enterotoxemia in sheep and goats. In vitro, epsilon toxin produces contraction of the rat ileum as the result of an indirect action, presumably mediated through the autonomic nervous system. To examine the impact of epsilon toxin in the intestinal transit, gastric emptying (GE) and gastrointestinal transit (GIT) were evaluated after intravenous and oral administration of epsilon toxin in mice. Orally administered epsilon toxin produced a delay on the GIT. Inhibition of the small intestinal transit was observed as early as 1 h after the toxin was administered orally but the effects were not observed after 1 week. Epsilon toxin also produced an inhibition in GE and a delay on the GIT when relatively high toxin concentrations were given intravenously. These results indicate that epsilon toxin administered orally or intravenously to mice transitorily inhibits the GIT. The delay in the GIT induced by epsilon toxin could be relevant in the pathogenesis of C. perfringens type B and D enterotoxemia. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Molecular basis of toxicity of Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin.

    PubMed

    Bokori-Brown, Monika; Savva, Christos G; Fernandes da Costa, Sérgio P; Naylor, Claire E; Basak, Ajit K; Titball, Richard W

    2011-12-01

    Clostridium perfringens ε-toxin is produced by toxinotypes B and D strains. The toxin is the aetiological agent of dysentery in newborn lambs but is also associated with enteritis and enterotoxaemia in goats, calves and foals. It is considered to be a potential biowarfare or bioterrorism agent by the US Government Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The relatively inactive 32.9 kDa prototoxin is converted to active mature toxin by proteolytic cleavage, either by digestive proteases of the host, such as trypsin and chymotrypsin, or by C. perfringens λ-protease. In vivo, the toxin appears to target the brain and kidneys, but relatively few cell lines are susceptible to the toxin, and most work has been carried out using Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells. The binding of ε-toxin to MDCK cells and rat synaptosomal membranes is associated with the formation of a stable, high molecular weight complex. The crystal structure of ε-toxin reveals similarity to aerolysin from Aeromonas hydrophila, parasporin-2 from Bacillus thuringiensis and a lectin from Laetiporus sulphureus. Like these toxins, ε-toxin appears to form heptameric pores in target cell membranes. The exquisite specificity of the toxin for specific cell types suggests that it binds to a receptor found only on these cells. © 2011 The Authors Journal compilation © 2011 FEBS.

  4. Botulinum toxin for vaginismus treatment.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, Juliana Rocha; Souza, Renan Pedra

    2012-01-01

    Vaginismus is characterized by recurrent or persistent involuntary contraction of the perineal muscles surrounding the outer third of the vagina when penile, finger, tampon, or speculum penetration is attempted. Recent results have suggested the use of botulinum toxin for the treatment of vaginismus. Here, we assessed previously published data to evaluate the therapeutic effectiveness of botulinum toxin for vaginismus. We have carried out a systematic review followed by a meta-analysis. Our results indicate that botulinum toxin is an effective therapeutic option for patients with vaginismus (pooled odds ratio of 8.723 with 95% confidence interval limits of 1.942 and 39.162, p = 0.005). This may hold particularly true in treatment-refractory patients because most of the studies included in this meta-analysis have enrolled these subjects in their primary analysis. Botulinum toxin appears to bea reasonable intervention for vaginismus. However, this conclusion should be read carefully because of the deficiency of placebo-controlled randomized clinical trials and the quality issues presented in the existing ones.

  5. Clostridium Perfringens Toxins Involved in Mammalian Veterinary Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Uzal, F. A.; Vidal, J. E.; McClane, B. A.; Gurjar, A. A.

    2013-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens is a gram-positive anaerobic rod that is classified into 5 toxinotypes (A, B, C, D, and E) according to the production of 4 major toxins, namely alpha (CPA), beta (CPB), epsilon (ETX) and iota (ITX). However, this microorganism can produce up to 16 toxins in various combinations, including lethal toxins such as perfringolysin O (PFO), enterotoxin (CPE), and beta2 toxin (CPB2). Most diseases caused by this microorganism are mediated by one or more of these toxins. The role of CPA in intestinal disease of mammals is controversial and poorly documented, but there is no doubt that this toxin is essential in the production of gas gangrene of humans and several animal species. CPB produced by C. perfringens types B and C is responsible for necrotizing enteritis and enterotoxemia mainly in neonatal individuals of several animal species. ETX produced by C. perfringens type D is responsible for clinical signs and lesions of enterotoxemia, a predominantly neurological disease of sheep and goats. The role of ITX in disease of animals is poorly understood, although it is usually assumed that the pathogenesis of intestinal diseases produced by C. perfringens type E is mediated by this toxin. CPB2, a necrotizing and lethal toxin that can be produced by all types of C. perfringens, has been blamed for disease in many animal species, but little information is currently available to sustain or rule out this claim. CPE is an important virulence factor for C. perfringens type A gastrointestinal disease in humans and dogs; however, the data implicating CPE in other animal diseases remains ambiguous. PFO does not seem to play a direct role as the main virulence factor for animal diseases, but it may have a synergistic role with CPA-mediated gangrene and ETX-mediated enterotoxemia. The recent improvement of animal models for C. perfringens infection and the use of toxin gene knock-out mutants have demonstrated the specific pathogenic role of several toxins of C

  6. Single toxin dose-response models revisited

    SciTech Connect

    Demidenko, Eugene, E-mail: eugened@dartmouth.edu

    The goal of this paper is to offer a rigorous analysis of the sigmoid shape single toxin dose-response relationship. The toxin efficacy function is introduced and four special points, including maximum toxin efficacy and inflection points, on the dose-response curve are defined. The special points define three phases of the toxin effect on mortality: (1) toxin concentrations smaller than the first inflection point or (2) larger then the second inflection point imply low mortality rate, and (3) concentrations between the first and the second inflection points imply high mortality rate. Probabilistic interpretation and mathematical analysis for each of the fourmore » models, Hill, logit, probit, and Weibull is provided. Two general model extensions are introduced: (1) the multi-target hit model that accounts for the existence of several vital receptors affected by the toxin, and (2) model with a nonzero mortality at zero concentration to account for natural mortality. Special attention is given to statistical estimation in the framework of the generalized linear model with the binomial dependent variable as the mortality count in each experiment, contrary to the widespread nonlinear regression treating the mortality rate as continuous variable. The models are illustrated using standard EPA Daphnia acute (48 h) toxicity tests with mortality as a function of NiCl or CuSO{sub 4} toxin. - Highlights: • The paper offers a rigorous study of a sigmoid dose-response relationship. • The concentration with highest mortality rate is rigorously defined. • A table with four special points for five morality curves is presented. • Two new sigmoid dose-response models have been introduced. • The generalized linear model is advocated for estimation of sigmoid dose-response relationship.« less

  7. Dinoflagellate Toxins Responsible for Ciguatera Food Poisoning

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1988-12-10

    0 AD DINOFLAGELLATE TOXINS RESPONSIBLE FOR CIGUATERA FOOD POISONING Annual Summary Report Donald M. Miller December 10, 1988 Supported by US ARMY...Maryland 21701-5012 62770A 62770A871 AA 377 11. TITLE (Include Security Classification) Dinoflagellate Toxins Responsible for Ciguatera Poisoning 12...block number) FIELD GROUP SUB-GROUP Ciguatera ; Toxins; Inhibitor; RA I; Dinoflagellates; 06 03 Mass Culture; Purification󈧊 j 01 19 ABSTRACT

  8. Clostridial binary toxins: iota and C2 family portraits.

    PubMed

    Stiles, Bradley G; Wigelsworth, Darran J; Popoff, Michel R; Barth, Holger

    2011-01-01

    There are many pathogenic Clostridium species with diverse virulence factors that include protein toxins. Some of these bacteria, such as C. botulinum, C. difficile, C. perfringens, and C. spiroforme, cause enteric problems in animals as well as humans. These often fatal diseases can partly be attributed to binary protein toxins that follow a classic AB paradigm. Within a targeted cell, all clostridial binary toxins destroy filamentous actin via mono-ADP-ribosylation of globular actin by the A component. However, much less is known about B component binding to cell-surface receptors. These toxins share sequence homology amongst themselves and with those produced by another Gram-positive, spore-forming bacterium also commonly associated with soil and disease: Bacillus anthracis. This review focuses upon the iota and C2 families of clostridial binary toxins and includes: (1) basics of the bacterial source; (2) toxin biochemistry; (3) sophisticated cellular uptake machinery; and (4) host-cell responses following toxin-mediated disruption of the cytoskeleton. In summary, these protein toxins aid diverse enteric species within the genus Clostridium.

  9. Clostridial Binary Toxins: Iota and C2 Family Portraits

    PubMed Central

    Stiles, Bradley G.; Wigelsworth, Darran J.; Popoff, Michel R.; Barth, Holger

    2011-01-01

    There are many pathogenic Clostridium species with diverse virulence factors that include protein toxins. Some of these bacteria, such as C. botulinum, C. difficile, C. perfringens, and C. spiroforme, cause enteric problems in animals as well as humans. These often fatal diseases can partly be attributed to binary protein toxins that follow a classic AB paradigm. Within a targeted cell, all clostridial binary toxins destroy filamentous actin via mono-ADP-ribosylation of globular actin by the A component. However, much less is known about B component binding to cell-surface receptors. These toxins share sequence homology amongst themselves and with those produced by another Gram-positive, spore-forming bacterium also commonly associated with soil and disease: Bacillus anthracis. This review focuses upon the iota and C2 families of clostridial binary toxins and includes: (1) basics of the bacterial source; (2) toxin biochemistry; (3) sophisticated cellular uptake machinery; and (4) host–cell responses following toxin-mediated disruption of the cytoskeleton. In summary, these protein toxins aid diverse enteric species within the genus Clostridium. PMID:22919577

  10. Short Toxin-like Proteins Abound in Cnidaria Genomes

    PubMed Central

    Tirosh, Yitshak; Linial, Itai; Askenazi, Manor; Linial, Michal

    2012-01-01

    Cnidaria is a rich phylum that includes thousands of marine species. In this study, we focused on Anthozoa and Hydrozoa that are represented by the Nematostella vectensis (Sea anemone) and Hydra magnipapillata genomes. We present a method for ranking the toxin-like candidates from complete proteomes of Cnidaria. Toxin-like functions were revealed using ClanTox, a statistical machine-learning predictor trained on ion channel inhibitors from venomous animals. Fundamental features that were emphasized in training ClanTox include cysteines and their spacing along the sequences. Among the 83,000 proteins derived from Cnidaria representatives, we found 170 candidates that fulfill the properties of toxin-like-proteins, the vast majority of which were previously unrecognized as toxins. An additional 394 short proteins exhibit characteristics of toxin-like proteins at a moderate degree of confidence. Remarkably, only 11% of the predicted toxin-like proteins were previously classified as toxins. Based on our prediction methodology and manual annotation, we inferred functions for over 400 of these proteins. Such functions include protease inhibitors, membrane pore formation, ion channel blockers and metal binding proteins. Many of the proteins belong to small families of paralogs. We conclude that the evolutionary expansion of toxin-like proteins in Cnidaria contributes to their fitness in the complex environment of the aquatic ecosystem. PMID:23202321

  11. In vitro reconstitution of the Clostridium botulinum type D progenitor toxin.

    PubMed

    Kouguchi, Hirokazu; Watanabe, Toshihiro; Sagane, Yoshimasa; Sunagawa, Hiroyuki; Ohyama, Tohru

    2002-01-25

    Clostridium botulinum type D strain 4947 produces two different sizes of progenitor toxins (M and L) as intact forms without proteolytic processing. The M toxin is composed of neurotoxin (NT) and nontoxic-nonhemagglutinin (NTNHA), whereas the L toxin is composed of the M toxin and hemagglutinin (HA) subcomponents (HA-70, HA-17, and HA-33). The HA-70 subcomponent and the HA-33/17 complex were isolated from the L toxin to near homogeneity by chromatography in the presence of denaturing agents. We were able to demonstrate, for the first time, in vitro reconstitution of the L toxin formed by mixing purified M toxin, HA-70, and HA-33/17. The properties of reconstituted and native L toxins are indistinguishable with respect to their gel filtration profiles, native-PAGE profiles, hemagglutination activity, binding activity to erythrocytes, and oral toxicity to mice. M toxin, which contained nicked NTNHA prepared by treatment with trypsin, could no longer be reconstituted to the L toxin with HA subcomponents, whereas the L toxin treated with proteases was not degraded into M toxin and HA subcomponents. We conclude that the M toxin forms first by assembly of NT with NTNHA and is subsequently converted to the L toxin by assembly with HA-70 and HA-33/17.

  12. Botulinum toxin in pain treatment.

    PubMed

    Colhado, Orlando Carlos Gomes; Boeing, Marcelo; Ortega, Luciano Bornia

    2009-01-01

    Botulinum toxin (BTX) is one of the most potent bacterial toxins known and its effectiveness in the treatment of some pain syndromes is well known. However, the efficacy of some of its indications is still in the process of being confirmed. The objective of this study was to review the history, pharmacological properties, and clinical applications of BTX in the treatment of pain of different origins. Botulinum toxin is produced by fermentation of Clostridium botulinum, a Gram-positive, anaerobic bacterium. Commercially, BTX comes in two presentations, types A and B. Botulinum toxin, a neurotoxin with high affinity for cholinergic synapses, blocks the release of acetylcholine by nerve endings without interfering with neuronal conduction of electrical signals or synthesis and storage of acetylcholine. It has been proven that BTX can selectively weaken painful muscles, interrupting the spasm-pain cycle. Several studies have demonstrated the efficacy and safety of BTX-A in the treatment of tension headaches, migraines, chronic lumbar pain, and myofascial pain. Botulinum toxin type A is well tolerated in the treatment of chronic pain disorders in which pharmacotherapy regimens can cause side effects. The reduction in the consumption of analgesics and length of action of 3 to 4 months per dose represent other advantages of its use. However, further studies are necessary to establish the efficacy of BTX-A in chronic pain disorders and its exact mechanism of action, as well as its potential in multifactorial treatments.

  13. Botulinum Toxin for Rhinitis.

    PubMed

    Ozcan, Cengiz; Ismi, Onur

    2016-08-01

    Rhinitis is a common clinical entity. Besides nasal obstruction, itching, and sneezing, one of the most important symptoms of rhinitis is nasal hypersecretion produced by nasal glands and exudate from the nasal vascular bed. Allergic rhinitis is an IgE-mediated inflammatory reaction of nasal mucosa after exposure to environmental allergens. Idiopathic rhinitis describes rhinitis symptoms that occur after non-allergic, noninfectious irritants. Specific allergen avoidance, topical nasal decongestants, nasal corticosteroids, immunotherapy, and sinonasal surgery are the main treatment options. Because the current treatment modalities are not enough for reducing rhinorrhea in some patients, novel treatment options are required to solve this problem. Botulinum toxin is an exotoxin generated by Clostridium botulinum. It disturbs the signal transmission at the neuromuscular and neuroglandular junction by inhibiting the acetylcholine release from the presynaptic nerve terminal. It has been widely used in neuromuscular, hypersecretory, and autonomic nerve system disorders. There have been a lot of published articles concerning the effect of this toxin on rhinitis symptoms. Based on the results of these reports, intranasal botulinum toxin A administration appears to be a safe and effective treatment method for decreasing rhinitis symptoms in rhinitis patients with a long-lasting effect. Botulinum toxin type A will be a good treatment option for the chronic rhinitis patients who are resistant to other treatment methods.

  14. The role of toxins in Clostridium difficile infection.

    PubMed

    Chandrasekaran, Ramyavardhanee; Lacy, D Borden

    2017-11-01

    Clostridium difficile is a bacterial pathogen that is the leading cause of nosocomial antibiotic-associated diarrhea and pseudomembranous colitis worldwide. The incidence, severity, mortality and healthcare costs associated with C. difficile infection (CDI) are rising, making C. difficile a major threat to public health. Traditional treatments for CDI involve use of antibiotics such as metronidazole and vancomycin, but disease recurrence occurs in about 30% of patients, highlighting the need for new therapies. The pathogenesis of C. difficile is primarily mediated by the actions of two large clostridial glucosylating toxins, toxin A (TcdA) and toxin B (TcdB). Some strains produce a third toxin, the binary toxin C. difficile transferase, which can also contribute to C. difficile virulence and disease. These toxins act on the colonic epithelium and immune cells and induce a complex cascade of cellular events that result in fluid secretion, inflammation and tissue damage, which are the hallmark features of the disease. In this review, we summarize our current understanding of the structure and mechanism of action of the C. difficile toxins and their role in disease. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of FEMS 2017.

  15. Interactions of cnidarian toxins with the immune system.

    PubMed

    Suput, Dusan

    2011-10-01

    Cnidarians comprise four classes of toxic marine animals: Anthozoa, Cubozoa, Scyphozoa and Hydrozoa. They are the largest and probably the oldest phylum of toxic marine animals. Any contact with a cnidarian, especially the box jellyfish (Chironex fleckeri), can be fatal, but most cnidarians do not possess sufficiently strong venomous apparatus to penetrate the human skin, whereas others rarely come into contact with human beings. Only a small, almost negligible percentage of the vast wealth of cnidarian toxins has been studied in detail. Many polypeptide cnidarian toxins are immunogenic, and cross-reactivity between several jellyfish venoms has been reported. Cnidarians also possess components of innate immunity, and some of those components have been preserved in evolution. On the other hand, cnidarian toxins have already been used for the design of immunotoxins to treat cancer, whereas other cnidarian toxins can modulate the immune system in mammals, including man. This review will focus on a short overview of cnidarian toxins, on the innate immunity of cnidarians, and on the mode of action of cnidarian toxins which can modulate the immune system in mammals. Emphasis is palced on those toxins which block voltage activated potassium channels in the cells of the immune system.

  16. Temperature Effects Explain Continental Scale Distribution of Cyanobacterial Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Mantzouki, Evanthia; Fastner, Jutta; de Senerpont Domis, Lisette; Wilk-Woźniak, Elżbieta; Koreivienė, Judita; Verstijnen, Yvon; Krztoń, Wojciech; Walusiak, Edward; Karosienė, Jūratė; Kasperovičienė, Jūratė; Savadova, Ksenija; Vitonytė, Irma; Budzyńska, Agnieszka; Szeląg-Wasielewska, Elżbieta; Domek, Piotr; Messyasz, Beata; Pełechata, Aleksandra; Pełechaty, Mariusz; Kokocinski, Mikolaj; García-Murcia, Ana; Real, Monserrat; Romans, Elvira; Noguero-Ribes, Jordi; Duque, David Parreño; Karakaya, Nusret; Häggqvist, Kerstin; Beklioğlu, Meryem; Filiz, Nur; Iskin, Uğur; Bezirci, Gizem; Tavşanoğlu, Ülkü Nihan; Panou, Manthos; Fakioglu, Özden; Avagianos, Christos; Çelik, Kemal; Yilmaz, Mete; Marcé, Rafael; Buck, Moritz; Colom-Montero, William; Mustonen, Kristiina; Pierson, Don; Yang, Yang; Raposeiro, Pedro M.; Antoniou, Maria G.; Tsiarta, Nikoletta; McCarthy, Valerie; Perello, Victor C.; Feldmann, Tõnu; Panksep, Kristel; Tuvikene, Lea; Gagala, Ilona; Çınar, Şakir; Çapkın, Kadir; Yağcı, Abdulkadir; Cesur, Mehmet; Bilgin, Fuat; Bulut, Cafer; Uysal, Rahmi; Boscaini, Adriano; Cerasino, Leonardo; Richardson, Jessica; Visser, Petra M.; Verspagen, Jolanda M. H.; Karan, Tünay; Ochocka, Agnieszka; Pasztaleniec, Agnieszka; Köker, Latife; Albay, Meriç; Maronić, Dubravka Špoljarić; Stević, Filip; Pfeiffer, Tanja Žuna; Fonvielle, Jeremy; Rothhaupt, Karl-Otto; Hansson, Lars-Anders; Bláha, Luděk; Geriš, Rodan; Fránková, Markéta; Koçer, Mehmet Ali Turan; Alp, Mehmet Tahir; Remec-Rekar, Spela; Elersek, Tina; Hiskia, Anastasia; Haande, Sigrid; Skjelbred, Birger; Madrecka, Beata; Nemova, Hana; Drastichova, Iveta; Chomova, Lucia; Edwards, Christine; Sevindik, Tuğba Ongun; Tunca, Hatice; Önem, Burçin; Aleksovski, Boris; Krstić, Svetislav; Vucelić, Itana Bokan; Nawrocka, Lidia; Salmi, Pauliina; Machado-Vieira, Danielle; de Oliveira, Alinne Gurjão; Delgado-Martín, Jordi; García, David; Cereijo, Jose Luís; Trapote, Mari Carmen; Obrador, Biel; Grabowska, Magdalena; Chmura, Damian; Úbeda, Bárbara; Warming, Trine Perlt; Kobos, Justyna; Mazur-Marzec, Hanna; Arvola, Lauri; Alcaraz-Párraga, Pablo; Toporowska, Magdalena; Pawlik-Skowronska, Barbara; Niedźwiecki, Michał; Pęczuła, Wojciech; Moreno-Ostos, Enrique; Blanco, José María; Rodríguez, Valeriano; Montes-Pérez, Jorge Juan; Palomino, Roberto L.; Rodríguez-Pérez, Estela; Carballeira, Rafael; Picazo, Antonio; Santamans, Anna C.; Ferriol, Carmen; Romo, Susana; Dunalska, Julita; Sieńska, Justyna; Szymański, Daniel; Kostrzewska-Szlakowska, Iwona; Jasser, Iwona; Žutinić, Petar; Udovič, Marija Gligora; Plenković-Moraj, Anđelka; Frąk, Magdalena; Bańkowska-Sobczak, Agnieszka; Wasilewicz, Michał; Özkan, Korhan; Kangro, Kersti; Ibelings, Bas W.

    2018-01-01

    Insight into how environmental change determines the production and distribution of cyanobacterial toxins is necessary for risk assessment. Management guidelines currently focus on hepatotoxins (microcystins). Increasing attention is given to other classes, such as neurotoxins (e.g., anatoxin-a) and cytotoxins (e.g., cylindrospermopsin) due to their potency. Most studies examine the relationship between individual toxin variants and environmental factors, such as nutrients, temperature and light. In summer 2015, we collected samples across Europe to investigate the effect of nutrient and temperature gradients on the variability of toxin production at a continental scale. Direct and indirect effects of temperature were the main drivers of the spatial distribution in the toxins produced by the cyanobacterial community, the toxin concentrations and toxin quota. Generalized linear models showed that a Toxin Diversity Index (TDI) increased with latitude, while it decreased with water stability. Increases in TDI were explained through a significant increase in toxin variants such as MC-YR, anatoxin and cylindrospermopsin, accompanied by a decreasing presence of MC-LR. While global warming continues, the direct and indirect effects of increased lake temperatures will drive changes in the distribution of cyanobacterial toxins in Europe, potentially promoting selection of a few highly toxic species or strains. PMID:29652856

  17. Temperature Effects Explain Continental Scale Distribution of Cyanobacterial Toxins.

    PubMed

    Mantzouki, Evanthia; Lürling, Miquel; Fastner, Jutta; de Senerpont Domis, Lisette; Wilk-Woźniak, Elżbieta; Koreivienė, Judita; Seelen, Laura; Teurlincx, Sven; Verstijnen, Yvon; Krztoń, Wojciech; Walusiak, Edward; Karosienė, Jūratė; Kasperovičienė, Jūratė; Savadova, Ksenija; Vitonytė, Irma; Cillero-Castro, Carmen; Budzyńska, Agnieszka; Goldyn, Ryszard; Kozak, Anna; Rosińska, Joanna; Szeląg-Wasielewska, Elżbieta; Domek, Piotr; Jakubowska-Krepska, Natalia; Kwasizur, Kinga; Messyasz, Beata; Pełechaty, Aleksandra; Pełechaty, Mariusz; Kokocinski, Mikolaj; García-Murcia, Ana; Real, Monserrat; Romans, Elvira; Noguero-Ribes, Jordi; Duque, David Parreño; Fernández-Morán, Elísabeth; Karakaya, Nusret; Häggqvist, Kerstin; Demir, Nilsun; Beklioğlu, Meryem; Filiz, Nur; Levi, Eti E.; Iskin, Uğur; Bezirci, Gizem; Tavşanoğlu, Ülkü Nihan; Özhan, Koray; Gkelis, Spyros; Panou, Manthos; Fakioglu, Özden; Avagianos, Christos; Kaloudis, Triantafyllos; Çelik, Kemal; Yilmaz, Mete; Marcé, Rafael; Catalán, Nuria; Bravo, Andrea G.; Buck, Moritz; Colom-Montero, William; Mustonen, Kristiina; Pierson, Don; Yang, Yang; Raposeiro, Pedro M.; Gonçalves, Vítor; Antoniou, Maria G.; Tsiarta, Nikoletta; McCarthy, Valerie; Perello, Victor C.; Feldmann, Tõnu; Laas, Alo; Panksep, Kristel; Tuvikene, Lea; Gagala, Ilona; Mankiewicz-Boczek, Joana; Yağcı, Meral Apaydın; Çınar, Şakir; Çapkın, Kadir; Yağcı, Abdulkadir; Cesur, Mehmet; Bilgin, Fuat; Bulut, Cafer; Uysal, Rahmi; Obertegger, Ulrike; Boscaini, Adriano; Flaim, Giovanna; Salmaso, Nico; Cerasino, Leonardo; Richardson, Jessica; Visser, Petra M.; Verspagen, Jolanda M. H.; Karan, Tünay; Soylu, Elif Neyran; Maraşlıoğlu, Faruk; Napiórkowska-Krzebietke, Agnieszka; Ochocka, Agnieszka; Pasztaleniec, Agnieszka; Antão-Geraldes, Ana M.; Vasconcelos, Vitor; Morais, João; Vale, Micaela; Köker, Latife; Akçaalan, Reyhan; Albay, Meriç; Špoljarić Maronić, Dubravka; Stević, Filip; Žuna Pfeiffer, Tanja; Fonvielle, Jeremy; Straile, Dietmar; Rothhaupt, Karl-Otto; Hansson, Lars-Anders; Urrutia-Cordero, Pablo; Bláha, Luděk; Geriš, Rodan; Fránková, Markéta; Koçer, Mehmet Ali Turan; Alp, Mehmet Tahir; Remec-Rekar, Spela; Elersek, Tina; Triantis, Theodoros; Zervou, Sevasti-Kiriaki; Hiskia, Anastasia; Haande, Sigrid; Skjelbred, Birger; Madrecka, Beata; Nemova, Hana; Drastichova, Iveta; Chomova, Lucia; Edwards, Christine; Sevindik, Tuğba Ongun; Tunca, Hatice; Önem, Burçin; Aleksovski, Boris; Krstić, Svetislav; Vucelić, Itana Bokan; Nawrocka, Lidia; Salmi, Pauliina; Machado-Vieira, Danielle; de Oliveira, Alinne Gurjão; Delgado-Martín, Jordi; García, David; Cereijo, Jose Luís; Gomà, Joan; Trapote, Mari Carmen; Vegas-Vilarrúbia, Teresa; Obrador, Biel; Grabowska, Magdalena; Karpowicz, Maciej; Chmura, Damian; Úbeda, Bárbara; Gálvez, José Ángel; Özen, Arda; Christoffersen, Kirsten Seestern; Warming, Trine Perlt; Kobos, Justyna; Mazur-Marzec, Hanna; Pérez-Martínez, Carmen; Ramos-Rodríguez, Eloísa; Arvola, Lauri; Alcaraz-Párraga, Pablo; Toporowska, Magdalena; Pawlik-Skowronska, Barbara; Niedźwiecki, Michał; Pęczuła, Wojciech; Leira, Manel; Hernández, Armand; Moreno-Ostos, Enrique; Blanco, José María; Rodríguez, Valeriano; Montes-Pérez, Jorge Juan; Palomino, Roberto L.; Rodríguez-Pérez, Estela; Carballeira, Rafael; Camacho, Antonio; Picazo, Antonio; Rochera, Carlos; Santamans, Anna C.; Ferriol, Carmen; Romo, Susana; Soria, Juan Miguel; Dunalska, Julita; Sieńska, Justyna; Szymański, Daniel; Kruk, Marek; Kostrzewska-Szlakowska, Iwona; Jasser, Iwona; Žutinić, Petar; Gligora Udovič, Marija; Plenković-Moraj, Anđelka; Frąk, Magdalena; Bańkowska-Sobczak, Agnieszka; Wasilewicz, Michał; Özkan, Korhan; Maliaka, Valentini; Kangro, Kersti; Grossart, Hans-Peter; Paerl, Hans W.; Carey, Cayelan C.; Ibelings, Bas W.

    2018-04-13

    Insight into how environmental change determines the production and distribution of cyanobacterial toxins is necessary for risk assessment. Management guidelines currently focus on hepatotoxins (microcystins). Increasing attention is given to other classes, such as neurotoxins (e.g., anatoxin-a) and cytotoxins (e.g., cylindrospermopsin) due to their potency. Most studies examine the relationship between individual toxin variants and environmental factors, such as nutrients, temperature and light. In summer 2015, we collected samples across Europe to investigate the effect of nutrient and temperature gradients on the variability of toxin production at a continental scale. Direct and indirect effects of temperature were the main drivers of the spatial distribution in the toxins produced by the cyanobacterial community, the toxin concentrations and toxin quota. Generalized linear models showed that a Toxin Diversity Index (TDI) increased with latitude, while it decreased with water stability. Increases in TDI were explained through a significant increase in toxin variants such as MC-YR, anatoxin and cylindrospermopsin, accompanied by a decreasing presence of MC-LR. While global warming continues, the direct and indirect effects of increased lake temperatures will drive changes in the distribution of cyanobacterial toxins in Europe, potentially promoting selection of a few highly toxic species or strains.

  18. Dinoflagellate Toxins Responsible for Ciguatera Food Poisoning

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1987-12-10

    the occurrence and importance of secondary toxins (12, 13, 14, 15, 16 and 17). Hutner and McLaughlin (18) suggested that the zooxanthellae ...argued that zooxanthellae were unlikely prospects because very few fishes eat coral and saxitoxin (STX = a paralytic shellfish poison which originates...of the toxins was not based on tests of zooxanthellae species but rather on the assumption that all dinoflagellate toxins would be expected to be

  19. Diphtheria toxin translocation across cellular membranes is regulated by sphingolipids

    SciTech Connect

    Spilsberg, Bjorn; Hanada, Kentaro; Sandvig, Kirsten

    2005-04-08

    Diphtheria toxin is translocated across cellular membranes when receptor-bound toxin is exposed to low pH. To study the role of sphingolipids for toxin translocation, both a mutant cell line lacking the first enzyme in de novo sphingolipid synthesis, serine palmitoyltransferase, and a specific inhibitor of the same enzyme, myriocin, were used. The serine palmitoyltransferase-deficient cell line (LY-B) was found to be 10-15 times more sensitive to diphtheria toxin than the genetically complemented cell line (LY-B/cLCB1) and the wild-type cell line (CHO-K1), both when toxin translocation directly across the plasma membrane was induced by exposing cells with surface-bound toxin to lowmore » pH, and when the toxin followed its normal route via acidified endosomes into the cytosol. Toxin binding was similar in these three cell lines. Furthermore, inhibition of serine palmitoyltransferase activity by addition of myriocin sensitized the two control cell lines (LY-B/cLCB1 and CHO-K1) to diphtheria toxin, whereas, as expected, no effect was observed in cells lacking serine palmitoyltransferase (LY-B). In conclusion, diphtheria toxin translocation is facilitated by depletion of membrane sphingolipids.« less

  20. Formation and Control of Cyanobacterial Toxins

    EPA Science Inventory

    This presentation will cover the formation of harmful algal blooms and the control of their toxins. Data will be presented from current ORD projects on the treatment of cyanobacterial toxins through drinking water treatment facilities. The results will demonstrate that current c...

  1. Natural toxins of plant origin (phytotoxins)

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Over 100,000 secondary compounds have been identified in plants including alkaloids, glycosides, proteins, polypeptides, amines and non-protein amino acids, organic acids, alcohols, polyacetylenes, resinous toxins and mineral toxins. For thousands of years man has used some of these compounds as fl...

  2. The life history of a botulinum toxin molecule.

    PubMed

    Simpson, Lance

    2013-06-01

    There is an emerging literature describing the absorption, distribution, metabolism and elimination of botulinum toxin. This work reveals that the toxin can be absorbed by both the oral and inhalation routes. The primary mechanism for absorption is binding and transport across epithelial cells. Toxin that enters the body undergoes a distribution phase, which is quite short, and an elimination phase, which is comparatively long. During the distribution phase, botulinum toxin migrates to the peri-neuronal microcompartment in the vicinity of vulnerable cells, such as cholinergic nerve endings. Only these cells have the ability to selectively accumulate the molecule. When the toxin moves from the cell membrane to the cell interior, it undergoes programmed death. This is coincident with release of the catalytically active light chain that paralyzes transmission. Intraneuronal metabolism of light chain is via the ubiquitination-proteasome pathway. Systemic metabolism and elimination is assumed to be via the liver. The analysis of absorption, distribution, metabolism and elimination of the toxin helps to create a life history of the molecule in the body. This has many benefits, including: a) clarifying the mechanisms that underlie the disease botulism, b) providing insights for development of medical countermeasures against the toxin, and c) helping to explain the meaning of a lethal dose of toxin. It is likely that work intended to enhance understanding of the fate of botulinum toxin in the body will intensify. These efforts will include new and powerful analytic tools, such as single molecule-single cell analyses in vitro and real time, 3-dimensional pharmacokinetic studies in vivo. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. 77 FR 15798 - Notice of Intent To Repatriate Cultural Items: San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-03-16

    ... height and 10.5 cm in diameter and is made of deer grass, sedge, redbud and bracken fern root. There are... deer grass, saw grass, redbud and bracken fern root. A tag attached to the basket was labeled... height with a maximum diameter of 18 cm and is made of deer grass, sedge, redbud and bracken fern root. A...

  4. The ng_ζ1 toxin of the gonococcal epsilon/zeta toxin/antitoxin system drains precursors for cell wall synthesis.

    PubMed

    Rocker, Andrea; Peschke, Madeleine; Kittilä, Tiia; Sakson, Roman; Brieke, Clara; Meinhart, Anton

    2018-04-27

    Bacterial toxin-antitoxin complexes are emerging as key players modulating bacterial physiology as activation of toxins induces stasis or programmed cell death by interference with vital cellular processes. Zeta toxins, which are prevalent in many bacterial genomes, were shown to interfere with cell wall formation by perturbing peptidoglycan synthesis in Gram-positive bacteria. Here, we characterize the epsilon/zeta toxin-antitoxin (TA) homologue from the Gram-negative pathogen Neisseria gonorrhoeae termed ng_ɛ1 / ng_ζ1. Contrary to previously studied streptococcal epsilon/zeta TA systems, ng_ɛ1 has an epsilon-unrelated fold and ng_ζ1 displays broader substrate specificity and phosphorylates multiple UDP-activated sugars that are precursors of peptidoglycan and lipopolysaccharide synthesis. Moreover, the phosphorylation site is different from the streptococcal zeta toxins, resulting in a different interference with cell wall synthesis. This difference most likely reflects adaptation to the individual cell wall composition of Gram-negative and Gram-positive organisms but also the distinct involvement of cell wall components in virulence.

  5. Risk Assessment of Shellfish Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Munday, Rex; Reeve, John

    2013-01-01

    Complex secondary metabolites, some of which are highly toxic to mammals, are produced by many marine organisms. Some of these organisms are important food sources for marine animals and, when ingested, the toxins that they produce may be absorbed and stored in the tissues of the predators, which then become toxic to animals higher up the food chain. This is a particular problem with shellfish, and many cases of poisoning are reported in shellfish consumers each year. At present, there is no practicable means of preventing uptake of the toxins by shellfish or of removing them after harvesting. Assessment of the risk posed by such toxins is therefore required in order to determine levels that are unlikely to cause adverse effects in humans and to permit the establishment of regulatory limits in shellfish for human consumption. In the present review, the basic principles of risk assessment are described, and the progress made toward robust risk assessment of seafood toxins is discussed. While good progress has been made, it is clear that further toxicological studies are required before this goal is fully achieved. PMID:24226039

  6. CD44 Promotes intoxication by the clostridial iota-family toxins.

    PubMed

    Wigelsworth, Darran J; Ruthel, Gordon; Schnell, Leonie; Herrlich, Peter; Blonder, Josip; Veenstra, Timothy D; Carman, Robert J; Wilkins, Tracy D; Van Nhieu, Guy Tran; Pauillac, Serge; Gibert, Maryse; Sauvonnet, Nathalie; Stiles, Bradley G; Popoff, Michel R; Barth, Holger

    2012-01-01

    Various pathogenic clostridia produce binary protein toxins associated with enteric diseases of humans and animals. Separate binding/translocation (B) components bind to a protein receptor on the cell surface, assemble with enzymatic (A) component(s), and mediate endocytosis of the toxin complex. Ultimately there is translocation of A component(s) from acidified endosomes into the cytosol, leading to destruction of the actin cytoskeleton. Our results revealed that CD44, a multifunctional surface protein of mammalian cells, facilitates intoxication by the iota family of clostridial binary toxins. Specific antibody against CD44 inhibited cytotoxicity of the prototypical Clostridium perfringens iota toxin. Versus CD44(+) melanoma cells, those lacking CD44 bound less toxin and were dose-dependently resistant to C. perfringens iota, as well as Clostridium difficile and Clostridium spiroforme iota-like, toxins. Purified CD44 specifically interacted in vitro with iota and iota-like, but not related Clostridium botulinum C2, toxins. Furthermore, CD44 knockout mice were resistant to iota toxin lethality. Collective data reveal an important role for CD44 during intoxication by a family of clostridial binary toxins.

  7. CD44 Promotes Intoxication by the Clostridial Iota-Family Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Wigelsworth, Darran J.; Ruthel, Gordon; Schnell, Leonie; Herrlich, Peter; Blonder, Josip; Veenstra, Timothy D.; Carman, Robert J.; Wilkins, Tracy D.; Van Nhieu, Guy Tran; Pauillac, Serge; Gibert, Maryse; Sauvonnet, Nathalie; Stiles, Bradley G.; Popoff, Michel R.; Barth, Holger

    2012-01-01

    Various pathogenic clostridia produce binary protein toxins associated with enteric diseases of humans and animals. Separate binding/translocation (B) components bind to a protein receptor on the cell surface, assemble with enzymatic (A) component(s), and mediate endocytosis of the toxin complex. Ultimately there is translocation of A component(s) from acidified endosomes into the cytosol, leading to destruction of the actin cytoskeleton. Our results revealed that CD44, a multifunctional surface protein of mammalian cells, facilitates intoxication by the iota family of clostridial binary toxins. Specific antibody against CD44 inhibited cytotoxicity of the prototypical Clostridium perfringens iota toxin. Versus CD44+ melanoma cells, those lacking CD44 bound less toxin and were dose-dependently resistant to C. perfringens iota, as well as Clostridium difficile and Clostridium spiroforme iota-like, toxins. Purified CD44 specifically interacted in vitro with iota and iota-like, but not related Clostridium botulinum C2, toxins. Furthermore, CD44 knockout mice were resistant to iota toxin lethality. Collective data reveal an important role for CD44 during intoxication by a family of clostridial binary toxins. PMID:23236484

  8. Structural Insights into Clostridium perfringens Delta Toxin Pore Formation

    PubMed Central

    Huyet, Jessica; Naylor, Claire E.; Savva, Christos G.; Gibert, Maryse; Popoff, Michel R.; Basak, Ajit K.

    2013-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens Delta toxin is one of the three hemolysin-like proteins produced by C. perfringens type C and possibly type B strains. One of the others, NetB, has been shown to be the major cause of Avian Nectrotic Enteritis, which following the reduction in use of antibiotics as growth promoters, has become an emerging disease of industrial poultry. Delta toxin itself is cytotoxic to the wide range of human and animal macrophages and platelets that present GM2 ganglioside on their membranes. It has sequence similarity with Staphylococcus aureus β-pore forming toxins and is expected to heptamerize and form pores in the lipid bilayer of host cell membranes. Nevertheless, its exact mode of action remains undetermined. Here we report the 2.4 Å crystal structure of monomeric Delta toxin. The superposition of this structure with the structure of the phospholipid-bound F component of S. aureus leucocidin (LukF) revealed that the glycerol molecules bound to Delta toxin and the phospholipids in LukF are accommodated in the same hydrophobic clefts, corresponding to where the toxin is expected to latch onto the membrane, though the binding sites show significant differences. From structure-based sequence alignment with the known structure of staphylococcal α-hemolysin, a model of the Delta toxin pore form has been built. Using electron microscopy, we have validated our model and characterized the Delta toxin pore on liposomes. These results highlight both similarities and differences in the mechanism of Delta toxin (and by extension NetB) cytotoxicity from that of the staphylococcal pore-forming toxins. PMID:23805259

  9. [Staphylococcal toxin of toxic shock syndrome].

    PubMed

    Fluer, F S

    2007-01-01

    Literature data on toxic shock syndrome staphylococcal toxin (TSST-1) are summarized; properties of Staphylococcus aureus strains producing TSST-1, nutrient media, and factors influencing on production of TSST-1 are reviewed. Physical and chemical properties of the toxin, its molecular characteristics, genetic regulation of its production, mechanism of action, and diseases which it causes are also discussed. Clinical and histologic signs of toxic shock syndrome (TSS), its diagnostic criteria, susceptibility of people to TSS, antigenic and serologic properties of the toxin, epidemiology of the infection caused by TSST-1-producing strains of staphylococci, methods of TSST-1 extraction and identification are described.

  10. Structural Basis of Clostridium perfringens Toxin Complex Formation

    SciTech Connect

    Adams,J.; Gregg, K.; Bayer, E.

    2008-01-01

    The virulent properties of the common human and livestock pathogen Clostridium perfringens are attributable to a formidable battery of toxins. Among these are a number of large and highly modular carbohydrate-active enzymes, including the {mu}-toxin and sialidases, whose catalytic properties are consistent with degradation of the mucosal layer of the human gut, glycosaminoglycans, and other cellular glycans found throughout the body. The conservation of noncatalytic ancillary modules among these enzymes suggests they make significant contributions to the overall functionality of the toxins. Here, we describe the structural basis of an ultra-tight interaction (Ka = 1.44 x 1011 M-1) between themore » X82 and dockerin modules, which are found throughout numerous C. perfringens carbohydrate-active enzymes. Extensive hydrogen-bonding and van der Waals contacts between the X82 and dockerin modules give rise to the observed high affinity. The {mu}-toxin dockerin module in this complex is positioned {approx}180 relative to the orientation of the dockerin modules on the cohesin module surface within cellulolytic complexes. These observations represent a unique property of these clostridial toxins whereby they can associate into large, noncovalent multitoxin complexes that allow potentiation of the activities of the individual toxins by combining complementary toxin specificities.« less

  11. Voltage-dependent blockade of muscle Na+ channels by guanidinium toxins

    PubMed Central

    1984-01-01

    Na+ channels from rat muscle plasma membrane vesicles were inserted into neutral planar phospholipid bilayers and were activated by batrachotoxin. Single channel blocking events induced by the addition of various guanidinium toxins were analyzed to derive the rates of channel-toxin association and dissociation. Blocking by tetrodotoxin, saxitoxin, and six natural saxitoxin derivatives containing sulfate or hydroxyl groups were studied. Although the binding affinities vary over 2,000-fold, all of the toxins exhibit identical voltage dependence of the blocking reactions, regardless of the toxin's net charge. The results suggest that the voltage dependence of toxin binding is due to a voltage-dependent conformational equilibrium of the toxin receptor, rather than to direct entry of the charged toxin molecule into the applied transmembrane electric field. PMID:6096479

  12. Comparison of T-2 Toxin and HT-2 Toxin Distributed in the Skeletal System with That in Other Tissues of Rats by Acute Toxicity Test.

    PubMed

    Yu, Fang Fang; Lin, Xia Lu; Yang, Lei; Liu, Huan; Wang, Xi; Fang, Hua; Lammi, ZMikko J; Guo, Xiong

    2017-11-01

    Twelve healthy rats were divided into the T-2 toxin group receiving gavage of 1 mg/kg T-2 toxin and the control group receiving gavage of normal saline. Total relative concentrations of T-2 toxin and HT-2 toxin in the skeletal system (thighbone, knee joints, and costal cartilage) were significantly higher than those in the heart, liver, and kidneys (P < 0.05). The relative concentrations of T-2 toxin and HT-2 toxin in the skeletal system (thighbone and costal cartilage) were also significantly higher than those in the heart, liver, and kidneys. The rats administered T-2 toxin showed rapid metabolism compared with that in rats administered HT-2 toxin, and the metabolic conversion rates in the different tissues were 68.20%-90.70%. Copyright © 2017 The Editorial Board of Biomedical and Environmental Sciences. Published by China CDC. All rights reserved.

  13. Toxin gene determination and evolution in scorpaenoid fish.

    PubMed

    Chuang, Po-Shun; Shiao, Jen-Chieh

    2014-09-01

    In this study, we determine the toxin genes from both cDNA and genomic DNA of four scorpaenoid fish and reconstruct their evolutionary relationship. The deduced protein sequences of the two toxin subunits in Sebastapistes strongia, Scorpaenopsis oxycephala, and Sebastiscus marmoratus are about 700 amino acid, similar to the sizes of the stonefish (Synanceia horrida, and Synanceia verrucosa) and lionfish (Pterois antennata and Pterois volitans) toxins previously published. The intron positions are highly conserved among these species, which indicate the applicability of gene finding by using genomic DNA template. The phylogenetic analysis shows that the two toxin subunits were duplicated prior to the speciation of Scorpaenoidei. The precedence of the gene duplication over speciation indicates that the toxin genes may be common to the whole family of Scorpaeniform. Furthermore, one additional toxin gene has been determined in the genomic DNA of Dendrochirus zebra. The phylogenetic analysis suggests that an additional gene duplication occurred before the speciation of the lionfish (Pteroinae) and a pseudogene may be generally present in the lineage of lionfish. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Discovery of novel bacterial toxins by genomics and computational biology.

    PubMed

    Doxey, Andrew C; Mansfield, Michael J; Montecucco, Cesare

    2018-06-01

    Hundreds and hundreds of bacterial protein toxins are presently known. Traditionally, toxin identification begins with pathological studies of bacterial infectious disease. Following identification and cultivation of a bacterial pathogen, the protein toxin is purified from the culture medium and its pathogenic activity is studied using the methods of biochemistry and structural biology, cell biology, tissue and organ biology, and appropriate animal models, supplemented by bioimaging techniques. The ongoing and explosive development of high-throughput DNA sequencing and bioinformatic approaches have set in motion a revolution in many fields of biology, including microbiology. One consequence is that genes encoding novel bacterial toxins can be identified by bioinformatic and computational methods based on previous knowledge accumulated from studies of the biology and pathology of thousands of known bacterial protein toxins. Starting from the paradigmatic cases of diphtheria toxin, tetanus and botulinum neurotoxins, this review discusses traditional experimental approaches as well as bioinformatics and genomics-driven approaches that facilitate the discovery of novel bacterial toxins. We discuss recent work on the identification of novel botulinum-like toxins from genera such as Weissella, Chryseobacterium, and Enteroccocus, and the implications of these computationally identified toxins in the field. Finally, we discuss the promise of metagenomics in the discovery of novel toxins and their ecological niches, and present data suggesting the existence of uncharacterized, botulinum-like toxin genes in insect gut metagenomes. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  15. Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin is absorbed from different intestinal segments of mice.

    PubMed

    Losada-Eaton, D M; Uzal, F A; Fernández Miyakawa, M E

    2008-06-01

    Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin is a potent toxin responsible for a rapidly fatal enterotoxaemia in several animal species. The pathogenesis of epsilon toxin includes toxicity to endothelial cells and neurons. Although epsilon toxin is absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract, the intestinal regions where the toxin is absorbed and the conditions favoring epsilon toxin absorption are unknown. The aim of this paper was to determine the toxicity of epsilon toxin absorbed from different gastrointestinal segments of mice and to evaluate the influence of the intestinal environment in the absorption of this toxin. Epsilon toxin diluted in one of several different saline solutions was surgically introduced into ligated stomach or intestinal segments of mice. Comparison of the toxicity of epsilon toxin injected in different sections of the gastrointestinal tract showed that this toxin can be absorbed from the small and the large intestine but not from the stomach of mice. The lethality of epsilon toxin was higher when this toxin was injected in the colon than in the small intestine. Low pH, and Na(+) and glucose added to the saline solution increased the toxicity of epsilon toxin injected into the small intestine. This study shows that absorption of epsilon toxin can occur in any intestinal segment of mice and that the physicochemical characteristics of the intestinal content can affect the absorption of this toxin.

  16. Chloroquine derivatives block the translocation pores and inhibit cellular entry of Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin and Bacillus anthracis lethal toxin.

    PubMed

    Kreidler, Anna-Maria; Benz, Roland; Barth, Holger

    2017-03-01

    The pathogenic bacteria Clostridium botulinum and Bacillus anthracis produce the binary protein toxins C2 and lethal toxin (LT), respectively. These toxins consist of a binding/transport (B 7 ) component that delivers the separate enzyme (A) component into the cytosol of target cells where it modifies its specific substrate and causes cell death. The B 7 components of C2 toxin and LT, C2IIa and PA 63 , respectively, are ring-shaped heptamers that bind to their cellular receptors and form complexes with their A components C2I and lethal factor (LF), respectively. After receptor-mediated endocytosis of the toxin complexes, C2IIa and PA 63 insert into the membranes of acidified endosomes and form trans-membrane pores through which C2I and LF translocate across endosomal membranes into the cytosol. C2IIa and PA 63 also form channels in planar bilayer membranes, and we used this approach earlier to identify chloroquine as a potent blocker of C2IIa and PA 63 pores. Here, a series of chloroquine derivatives was investigated to identify more efficient toxin inhibitors with less toxic side effects. Chloroquine, primaquine, quinacrine, and fluphenazine blocked C2IIa and PA 63 pores in planar lipid bilayers and in membranes of living epithelial cells and macrophages, thereby preventing the pH-dependent membrane transport of the A components into the cytosol and protecting cells from intoxication with C2 toxin and LT. These potent inhibitors of toxin entry underline the central role of the translocation pores for cellular uptake of binary bacterial toxins and as relevant drug targets, and might be lead compounds for novel pharmacological strategies against severe enteric diseases and anthrax.

  17. Role of Receptors in Bacillus thuringiensis Crystal Toxin Activity

    PubMed Central

    Pigott, Craig R.; Ellar, David J.

    2007-01-01

    Bacillus thuringiensis produces crystalline protein inclusions with insecticidal or nematocidal properties. These crystal (Cry) proteins determine a particular strain's toxicity profile. Transgenic crops expressing one or more recombinant Cry toxins have become agriculturally important. Individual Cry toxins are usually toxic to only a few species within an order, and receptors on midgut epithelial cells have been shown to be critical determinants of Cry specificity. The best characterized of these receptors have been identified for lepidopterans, and two major receptor classes have emerged: the aminopeptidase N (APN) receptors and the cadherin-like receptors. Currently, 38 different APNs have been reported for 12 different lepidopterans. Each APN belongs to one of five groups that have unique structural features and Cry-binding properties. While 17 different APNs have been reported to bind to Cry toxins, only 2 have been shown to mediate toxin susceptibly in vivo. In contrast, several cadherin-like proteins bind to Cry toxins and confer toxin susceptibility in vitro, and disruption of the cadherin gene has been associated with toxin resistance. Nonetheless, only a small subset of the lepidopteran-specific Cry toxins has been shown to interact with cadherin-like proteins. This review analyzes the interactions between Cry toxins and their receptors, focusing on the identification and validation of receptors, the molecular basis for receptor recognition, the role of the receptor in resistant insects, and proposed models to explain the sequence of events at the cell surface by which receptor binding leads to cell death. PMID:17554045

  18. Cellular Uptake of the Clostridium perfringens Binary Iota-Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Blöcker, Dagmar; Behlke, Joachim; Aktories, Klaus; Barth, Holger

    2001-01-01

    The binary iota-toxin is produced by Clostridium perfringens type E strains and consists of two separate proteins, the binding component iota b (98 kDa) and an actin-ADP-ribosylating enzyme component iota a (47 kDa). Iota b binds to the cell surface receptor and mediates the translocation of iota a into the cytosol. Here we studied the cellular uptake of iota-toxin into Vero cells. Bafilomycin A1, but not brefeldin A or nocodazole, inhibited the cytotoxic effects of iota-toxin, indicating that toxin is translocated from an endosomal compartment into the cytoplasm. Acidification (pH ≤ 5.0) of the extracellular medium enabled iota a to directly enter the cytosol in the presence of iota b. Activation by chymotrypsin induced oligomerization of iota b in solution. An average mass of 530 ± 28 kDa for oligomers was determined by analytical ultracentrifugation, indicating heptamer formation. The entry of iota-toxin into polarized CaCo-2 cells was studied by measuring the decrease in transepithelial resistance after toxin treatment. Iota-toxin led to a significant decrease in resistance when it was applied to the basolateral surface of the cells but not following application to the apical surface, indicating a polarized localization of the iota-toxin receptor. PMID:11292715

  19. Toxin activity assays, devices, methods and systems therefor

    DOEpatents

    Koh, Chung-Yan; Schaff, Ulrich Y.; Sommer, Gregory Jon

    2016-04-05

    Embodiments of the present invention are directed toward devices, system and method for conducting toxin activity assay using sedimentation. The toxin activity assay may include generating complexes which bind to a plurality of beads in a fluid sample. The complexes may include a target toxin and a labeling agent, or may be generated due to presence of active target toxin and/or labeling agent designed to be incorporated into complexes responsive to the presence of target active toxin. The plurality of beads including the complexes may be transported through a density media, wherein the density media has a lower density than a density of the beads and higher than a density of the fluid sample, and wherein the transporting occurs, at least in part, by sedimentation. Signal may be detected from the labeling agents of the complexes.

  20. Clostridium perfringens iota toxin: synergism between two proteins.

    PubMed

    Stiles, B G; Wilkins, T D

    1986-01-01

    The iota toxin of Clostridium perfringens type E is a guinea pig dermonecrotic, mouse lethal toxin which cross-reacts with the iota-like toxin of Clostridium spiroforme. Antiserum raised against C. spiroforme or C. perfringens type E neutralizes the toxin from both species. By using C. spiroforme antiserum and crossed immunoelectrophoresis, we have found that there are two cross-reacting proteins, designated iota a (ia) and iota b (ib) in the culture filtrate of C. perfringens type E. Both proteins of C. perfringens were separated by preparative isoelectric focusing and had very little toxic activity when tested alone. However, when they were recombined there were 8- and 25-fold increases in bioactivity as determined by mouse lethal and guinea pig dermonecrotic assays, respectively. These results demonstrate that the iota toxin of C. perfringens requires two immunologically and biochemically different proteins for maximum activity.

  1. Antibody-Mediated Inhibition of Ricin Toxin Retrograde Transport

    PubMed Central

    Yermakova, Anastasiya; Klokk, Tove Irene; Cole, Richard; Sandvig, Kirsten; Mantis, Nicholas J.

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT Ricin is a member of the ubiquitous family of plant and bacterial AB toxins that gain entry into the cytosol of host cells through receptor-mediated endocytosis and retrograde traffic through the trans-Golgi network (TGN) and endoplasmic reticulum (ER). While a few ricin toxin-specific neutralizing monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) have been identified, the mechanisms by which these antibodies prevent toxin-induced cell death are largely unknown. Using immunofluorescence confocal microscopy and a TGN-specific sulfation assay, we demonstrate that 24B11, a MAb against ricin’s binding subunit (RTB), associates with ricin in solution or when prebound to cell surfaces and then markedly enhances toxin uptake into host cells. Following endocytosis, however, toxin-antibody complexes failed to reach the TGN; instead, they were shunted to Rab7-positive late endosomes and LAMP-1-positive lysosomes. Monovalent 24B11 Fab fragments also interfered with toxin retrograde transport, indicating that neither cross-linking of membrane glycoproteins/glycolipids nor the recently identified intracellular Fc receptor is required to derail ricin en route to the TGN. Identification of the mechanism(s) by which antibodies like 24B11 neutralize ricin will advance our fundamental understanding of protein trafficking in mammalian cells and may lead to the discovery of new classes of toxin inhibitors and therapeutics for biodefense and emerging infectious diseases. PMID:24713323

  2. Diarrhetic Shellfish Toxins and Other Lipophilic Toxins of Human Health Concern in Washington State

    PubMed Central

    Trainer, Vera L.; Moore, Leslie; Bill, Brian D.; Adams, Nicolaus G.; Harrington, Neil; Borchert, Jerry; da Silva, Denis A. M.; Eberhart, Bich-Thuy L.

    2013-01-01

    The illness of three people in 2011 after their ingestion of mussels collected from Sequim Bay State Park, Washington State, USA, demonstrated the need to monitor diarrhetic shellfish toxins (DSTs) in Washington State for the protection of human health. Following these cases of diarrhetic shellfish poisoning, monitoring for DSTs in Washington State became formalized in 2012, guided by routine monitoring of Dinophysis species by the SoundToxins program in Puget Sound and the Olympic Region Harmful Algal Bloom (ORHAB) partnership on the outer Washington State coast. Here we show that the DSTs at concentrations above the guidance level of 16 μg okadaic acid (OA) + dinophysistoxins (DTXs)/100 g shellfish tissue were widespread in sentinel mussels throughout Puget Sound in summer 2012 and included harvest closures of California mussel, varnish clam, manila clam and Pacific oyster. Concentrations of toxins in Pacific oyster and manila clam were often at least half those measured in blue mussels at the same site. The primary toxin isomer in shellfish and plankton samples was dinophysistoxin-1 (DTX-1) with D. acuminata as the primary Dinophysis species. Other lipophilic toxins in shellfish were pectenotoxin-2 (PTX-2) and yessotoxin (YTX) with azaspiracid-2 (AZA-2) also measured in phytoplankton samples. Okadaic acid, azaspiracid-1 (AZA-1) and azaspiracid-3 (AZA-3) were all below the levels of detection by liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). A shellfish closure at Ruby Beach, Washington, was the first ever noted on the Washington State Pacific coast due to DSTs. The greater than average Fraser River flow during the summers of 2011 and 2012 may have provided an environment conducive to dinoflagellates and played a role in the prevalence of toxigenic Dinophysis in Puget Sound. PMID:23760013

  3. Diarrhetic shellfish toxins and other lipophilic toxins of human health concern in Washington State.

    PubMed

    Trainer, Vera L; Moore, Leslie; Bill, Brian D; Adams, Nicolaus G; Harrington, Neil; Borchert, Jerry; da Silva, Denis A M; Eberhart, Bich-Thuy L

    2013-05-28

    The illness of three people in 2011 after their ingestion of mussels collected from Sequim Bay State Park, Washington State, USA, demonstrated the need to monitor diarrhetic shellfish toxins (DSTs) in Washington State for the protection of human health. Following these cases of diarrhetic shellfish poisoning, monitoring for DSTs in Washington State became formalized in 2012, guided by routine monitoring of Dinophysis species by the SoundToxins program in Puget Sound and the Olympic Region Harmful Algal Bloom (ORHAB) partnership on the outer Washington State coast. Here we show that the DSTs at concentrations above the guidance level of 16 μg okadaic acid (OA) + dinophysistoxins (DTXs)/100 g shellfish tissue were widespread in sentinel mussels throughout Puget Sound in summer 2012 and included harvest closures of California mussel, varnish clam, manila clam and Pacific oyster. Concentrations of toxins in Pacific oyster and manila clam were often at least half those measured in blue mussels at the same site. The primary toxin isomer in shellfish and plankton samples was dinophysistoxin-1 (DTX-1) with D. acuminata as the primary Dinophysis species. Other lipophilic toxins in shellfish were pectenotoxin-2 (PTX-2) and yessotoxin (YTX) with azaspiracid-2 (AZA-2) also measured in phytoplankton samples. Okadaic acid, azaspiracid-1 (AZA-1) and azaspiracid-3 (AZA-3) were all below the levels of detection by liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). A shellfish closure at Ruby Beach, Washington, was the first ever noted on the Washington State Pacific coast due to DSTs. The greater than average Fraser River flow during the summers of 2011 and 2012 may have provided an environment conducive to dinoflagellates and played a role in the prevalence of toxigenic Dinophysis in Puget Sound.

  4. X Irradiation and Toxin Neutralization by Antitoxin

    SciTech Connect

    Kahn, R. L.; Kim, S. H.; Curtis, A. C.

    1960-11-01

    A small area of the skin of normal rabbits was exposed to 1000 r and, after a given interval, 15 units of horse serum diphtheria antitoxin were injected subcutaneously in that area and simultaneously a lethal (25 MLD) dose of homologous toxin in another area. As controls, non-irradiated rabbits of similar weight were injected with the same quantities of antitoxin and of toxin at the same time as the irradiated rabbits and under identical conditions. Five intervals following the irradiation were employed for the injection of the antitoxin and the toxin: 1 to 3 hours, 24 hours, 7 days, 14more » days, and 90 days. It was found that, of the irradiated rabbits, 55% survived the toxin when the antitoxin was injected 1 to 3 hours after the exposure, 100% survived when the antitoxin was injected 24 hours after, 47% survived when the antitoxin was injected 7 days after, 27% survived when the antitoxin was injected 14 days after and none of the rabbits survived when the antitoxin was injected 90 days after. Of the non-irradiated controls, an average of 20% survived the toxin. The results indicated that a restricted amount of antitoxin injected subcutaneously in an irradiated area up to 7 days after exposure to 1000 r was more effective in the neutralization of a lethal dose of toxin than the same amount injected into a corresponding area of non-irradiated rabbits and the most marked neutralization occurred 24 hours after the exposure. By 14 days after the exposure, the neutralization of the toxin reached the control level, but 90 days after, no neutralization of the toxin was observed. The basis for the non-neutralization of the toxin in any of the rabbits was apparently not an insufficiency of the subcutaneouslyinjected antitoxin, which consisted of 15 units, since 5 units injected intravenously were found to be ample for neutralization of the same dose of toxin. The non-protection was due most likely to the localization of the proteins of the antitoxin, consisting of 0

  5. EFFECTS OF MARINE ALGAL TOXINS ON THERMOREGULATION IN MICE.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Hypothermia is often seen in mice and rats exposed acutely to marine algal toxins, but the mechanism of action of these toxins on thermoregulation is not well understood. Our laboratory has assessed the thermoregulatory mechanisms of two marine algal toxins, maitotoxin and brevet...

  6. [Environmental toxins in breast milk].

    PubMed

    Bratlid, Dag

    2009-12-17

    Breast milk is very important to ensure infants a well-composed and safe diet during the first year of life. However, the quality of breast milk seems to be affected by an increasing amount of environmental toxins (particularly so-called Persistent, Bioaccumulative Toxins [PBTs]). Many concerns have been raised about the negative effects this may have on infant health. The article is a review of literature (mainly review articles) identified through a non-systematic search in PubMed. The concentration of PBTs in breast milk is mainly caused by man's position as the terminal link in the nutritional chain. Many breast-fed infants have a daily intake of such toxins that exceed limits defined for the population in general. Animal studies demonstrate effects on endocrine function and neurotoxicity in the offspring, and a number of human studies seem to point in the same direction. However the "original" optimal composition of breast milk still seems to protect against long-term effects of such toxicity. There is international consensus about the need to monitor breast milk for the presence of PBTs. Such surveillance will be a good indicator of the population's general exposure to these toxins and may also contribute to identifying groups as risk who should not breast-feed their children for a long time.

  7. Botulinum Toxin

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2009-01-01

    neuroblastomas and rat gliomas, but not to human neuroblastoma cell lines ( Yokosawa et ai., 1989). Yokosawa et ai. (1989) suggested that reduced...12764-72. Yndestad, M., Loftsgard, G. (1970). Susceptibility of mink to Clostridium botulinum type C toxin. Acta Vet. Scand. 11: 594-9. Yokosawa , N

  8. Cellular vacuolation induced by Clostridium perfringens epsilon-toxin.

    PubMed

    Nagahama, Masahiro; Itohayashi, Yukari; Hara, Hideki; Higashihara, Masahiro; Fukatani, Yusuke; Takagishi, Teruhisa; Oda, Masataka; Kobayashi, Keiko; Nakagawa, Ichiro; Sakurai, Jun

    2011-09-01

    The epsilon-toxin of Clostridium perfringens forms a heptamer in the membranes of Madin-Darby canine kidney cells, leading to cell death. Here, we report that it caused the vacuolation of Madin-Darby canine kidney cells. The toxin induced vacuolation in a dose-dependent and time-dependent manner. The monomer of the toxin formed oligomers on lipid rafts in membranes of the cells. Methyl-β-cyclodextrin and poly(ethylene glycol) 4000 inhibited the vacuolation. Epsilon-toxin was internalized into the cells. Confocal microscopy revealed that the internalized toxin was transported from early endosomes (early endosome antigen 1 staining) to late endosomes and lysosomes (lysosomal-associated membrane protein 2 staining) and then distributed to the membranes of vacuoles. Furthermore, the vacuolation was inhibited by bafilomycin A1, a V-type ATPase inhibitor, and colchicine and nocodazole, microtubule-depolymerizing agents. The early endosomal marker green fluorescent protein-Rab5 and early endosome antigen 1 did not localize to vacuolar membranes. In contrast, the vacuolar membranes were specifically stained by the late endosomal and lysosomal marker green fluorescent protein-Rab7 and lysosomal-associated membrane protein 2. The vacuoles in the toxin-treated cells were stained with LysoTracker Red DND-99, a marker for late endosomes and lysosomes. A dominant negative mutant of Rab7 prevented the vacuolization, whereas a mutant form of Rab5 was less effective. These results demonstrate, for the first time, that: (a) oligomers of epsilon-toxin formed in lipid rafts are endocytosed; and (b) the vacuoles originating from late endosomes and lysosomes are formed by an oligomer of epsilon-toxin. © 2011 The Authors Journal compilation © 2011 FEBS.

  9. 42 CFR 73.4 - Overlap select agents and toxins.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... Public Health PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES QUARANTINE, INSPECTION... its naturally occurring environment provided that the select agent or toxin has not been intentionally... such agent or toxin or destroys the agent or toxin by a recognized sterilization or inactivation...

  10. Cellular Uptake and Mode-of-Action of Clostridium difficile Toxins.

    PubMed

    Papatheodorou, Panagiotis; Barth, Holger; Minton, Nigel; Aktories, Klaus

    2018-01-01

    Research on the human gut pathogen Clostridium difficile and its toxins has gained much attention, particularly as a consequence of the increasing threat to human health presented by emerging hypervirulent strains. Toxin A (TcdA) and B (TcdB) are the two major virulence determinants of C. difficile. Both are single-chain proteins with a similar multidomain architecture. Certain hypervirulent C. difficile strains also produce a third toxin, namely binary toxin CDT (Clostridium difficile transferase). As C. difficile toxins are the causative agents of C. difficile-associated diseases (CDAD), such as antibiotics-associated diarrhea and pseudomembranous colitis, considerable efforts have been expended to unravel their molecular mode-of-action and the cellular mechanisms responsible for their uptake. Notably, a high proportion of studies on C. difficile toxins were performed in European laboratories. In this chapter we will highlight important recent advances in C. difficile toxins research.

  11. Phage Display of a Biologically Active Bacillus thuringiensis Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Kasman, Laura M.; Lukowiak, Andrew A.; Garczynski, Stephen F.; McNall, Rebecca J.; Youngman, Phil; Adang, Michael J.

    1998-01-01

    Activated forms of Bacillus thuringiensis insecticidal toxins have consistently been found to form insoluble and inactive precipitates when they are expressed in Escherichia coli. Genetic engineering of these proteins to improve their effectiveness as biological pesticides would be greatly facilitated by the ability to express them in E. coli, since the molecular biology tools available for Bacillus are limited. To this end, we show that activated B. thuringiensis toxin (Cry1Ac) can be expressed in E. coli as a translational fusion with the minor phage coat protein of filamentous phage. Phage particles displaying this fusion protein were viable, infectious, and as lethal as pure toxin on a molar basis when the phage particles were fed to insects susceptible to native Cry1Ac. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and Western blot analysis showed the fusion protein to be antigenically equivalent to native toxin, and micropanning with anti-Cry1Ac antibody was positive for the toxin-expressing phage. Phage display of B. thuringiensis toxins has many advantages over previous expression systems for these proteins and should make it possible to construct large libraries of toxin variants for screening or biopanning. PMID:9687463

  12. Dinophysis Toxins: Causative Organisms, Distribution and Fate in Shellfish

    PubMed Central

    Reguera, Beatriz; Riobó, Pilar; Rodríguez, Francisco; Díaz, Patricio A.; Pizarro, Gemita; Paz, Beatriz; Franco, José M.; Blanco, Juan

    2014-01-01

    Several Dinophysis species produce diarrhoetic toxins (okadaic acid and dinophysistoxins) and pectenotoxins, and cause gastointestinal illness, Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning (DSP), even at low cell densities (<103 cells·L−1). They are the main threat, in terms of days of harvesting bans, to aquaculture in Northern Japan, Chile, and Europe. Toxicity and toxin profiles are very variable, more between strains than species. The distribution of DSP events mirrors that of shellfish production areas that have implemented toxin regulations, otherwise misinterpreted as bacterial or viral contamination. Field observations and laboratory experiments have shown that most of the toxins produced by Dinophysis are released into the medium, raising questions about the ecological role of extracelular toxins and their potential uptake by shellfish. Shellfish contamination results from a complex balance between food selection, adsorption, species-specific enzymatic transformations, and allometric processes. Highest risk areas are those combining Dinophysis strains with high cell content of okadaates, aquaculture with predominance of mytilids (good accumulators of toxins), and consumers who frequently include mussels in their diet. Regions including pectenotoxins in their regulated phycotoxins will suffer from much longer harvesting bans and from disloyal competition with production areas where these toxins have been deregulated. PMID:24447996

  13. Immunization with Bacillus Spores Expressing Toxin A Peptide Repeats Protects against Infection with Clostridium difficile Strains Producing Toxins A and B ▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Permpoonpattana, Patima; Hong, Huynh A.; Phetcharaburanin, Jutarop; Huang, Jen-Min; Cook, Jenny; Fairweather, Neil F.; Cutting, Simon M.

    2011-01-01

    Clostridium difficile is a leading cause of nosocomial infection in the developed world. Two toxins, A and B, produced by most strains of C. difficile are implicated as virulence factors, yet only recently has the requirement of these for infection been investigated by genetic manipulation. Current vaccine strategies are focused mostly on parenteral delivery of toxoids. In this work, we have used bacterial spores (Bacillus subtilis) as a delivery vehicle to evaluate the carboxy-terminal repeat domains of toxins A and B as protective antigens. Our findings are important and show that oral immunization of the repeat domain of toxin A is sufficient to confer protection in a hamster model of infection designed to closely mimic the human course of infection. Importantly, neutralizing antibodies to the toxin A repeat domain were shown to be cross-reactive with the analogous domain of toxin B and, being of high avidity, provided protection against challenge with a C. difficile strain producing toxins A and B (A+B+). Thus, although many strains produce both toxins, antibodies to only toxin A can mediate protection. Animals vaccinated with recombinant spores were fully able to survive reinfection, a property that is particularly important for a disease with which patients are prone to relapse. We show that mucosal immunization, not parenteral delivery, is required to generate secretory IgA and that production of these neutralizing polymeric antibodies correlates with protection. This work demonstrates that an effective vaccine against C. difficile can be designed around two attributes, mucosal delivery and the repeat domain of toxin A. PMID:21482682

  14. Comparison of Anorectic Potencies of the Trichothecenes T-2 Toxin, HT-2 Toxin and Satratoxin G to the Ipecac Alkaloid Emetine.

    PubMed

    Wu, Wenda; Zhou, Hui-Ren; Pan, Xiao; Pestka, James J

    Trichothecene mycotoxins, potent translational inhibitors that are associated with human food poisonings and damp-building illnesses, are of considerable concern to animal and human health. Food refusal is a hallmark of exposure of experimental animals to deoxynivalenol (DON) and other Type B trichothecenes but less is known about the anorectic effects of foodborne Type A trichothecenes (e.g., T-2 toxin, HT-2 toxin), airborne Type D trichothecenes (e.g. satratoxin G [SG]) or functionally analogous metabolites that impair protein synthesis. Here, we utilized a well-described mouse model of food intake to compare the anorectic potencies of T-2 toxin, HT-2 toxin, and SG to that of emetine, a medicinal alkaloid derived from ipecac that inhibits translation. Intraperitoneal (IP) administration with T-2 toxin, HT-2 toxin, emetine and SG evoked anorectic responses that occurred within 0.5 h that lasted up to 96, 96, 3 and 96 h, respectively, with lowest observed adverse effect levels (LOAELs) being 0.1, 0.1, 2.5 and 0.25 mg/kg BW, respectively. When delivered via natural routes of exposure, T-2 toxin, HT-2 toxin, emetine (oral) and SG (intranasal) induced anorectic responses that lasted up to 48, 48, 3 and 6 h, respectively with LOAELs being 0.1, 0.1, 0.25, and 0.5 mg/kg BW, respectively. All four compounds were generally much more potent than DON which was previously observed to have LOAELs of 1 and 2.5 mg/kg BW after IP and oral dosing, respectively. Taken together, these anorectic potency data will be valuable in discerning the relative risks from trichothecenes and other translational inhibitors of natural origin.

  15. Inhibitory effects of botulinum toxin on pyloric and antral smooth muscle.

    PubMed

    James, Arlene N; Ryan, James P; Parkman, Henry P

    2003-08-01

    Botulinum toxin injection into the pylorus is reported to improve gastric emptying in gastroparesis. Classically, botulinum toxin inhibits ACh release from cholinergic nerves in skeletal muscle. The aim of this study was to determine the effects of botulinum toxin on pyloric smooth muscle. Guinea pig pyloric muscle strips were studied in vitro. Botulinum toxin type A was added; electric field stimulation (EFS) was performed every 30 min for 6 h. ACh (100 microM)-induced contractile responses were determined before and after 6 h. Botulinum toxin caused a concentration-dependent decrease of pyloric contractions to EFS. At a low concentration (2 U/ml), botulinum toxin decreased pyloric contractions to EFS by 43 +/- 9% without affecting ACh-induced contractions. At higher concentrations (10 U/ml), botulinum toxin decreased pyloric contraction to EFS by 75 +/- 7% and decreased ACh-induced contraction by 79 +/- 9%. In conclusion, botulinum toxin inhibits pyloric smooth muscle contractility. At a low concentration, botulinum toxin decreases EFS-induced contractile responses without affecting ACh-induced contractions suggesting inhibition of ACh release from cholinergic nerves. At higher concentrations, botulinum toxin directly inhibits smooth muscle contractility as evidenced by the decreased contractile response to ACh.

  16. 42 CFR 73.4 - Overlap select agents and toxins.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... Public Health PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES QUARANTINE, INSPECTION... its naturally occurring environment provided that the select agent or toxin has not been intentionally... an entity eligible to receive such agent or toxin or destroys the agent or toxin by a recognized...

  17. AB toxins: a paradigm switch from deadly to desirable.

    PubMed

    Odumosu, Oludare; Nicholas, Dequina; Yano, Hiroshi; Langridge, William

    2010-07-01

    To ensure their survival, a number of bacterial and plant species have evolved a common strategy to capture energy from other biological systems. Being imperfect pathogens, organisms synthesizing multi-subunit AB toxins are responsible for the mortality of millions of people and animals annually. Vaccination against these organisms and their toxins has proved rather ineffective in providing long-term protection from disease. In response to the debilitating effects of AB toxins on epithelial cells of the digestive mucosa, mechanisms underlying toxin immunomodulation of immune responses have become the focus of increasing experimentation. The results of these studies reveal that AB toxins may have a beneficial application as adjuvants for the enhancement of immune protection against infection and autoimmunity. Here, we examine similarities and differences in the structure and function of bacterial and plant AB toxins that underlie their toxicity and their exceptional properties as immunomodulators for stimulating immune responses against infectious disease and for immune suppression of organ-specific autoimmunity.

  18. AB Toxins: A Paradigm Switch from Deadly to Desirable

    PubMed Central

    Odumosu, Oludare; Nicholas, Dequina; Yano, Hiroshi; Langridge, William

    2010-01-01

    To ensure their survival, a number of bacterial and plant species have evolved a common strategy to capture energy from other biological systems. Being imperfect pathogens, organisms synthesizing multi-subunit AB toxins are responsible for the mortality of millions of people and animals annually. Vaccination against these organisms and their toxins has proved rather ineffective in providing long-term protection from disease. In response to the debilitating effects of AB toxins on epithelial cells of the digestive mucosa, mechanisms underlying toxin immunomodulation of immune responses have become the focus of increasing experimentation. The results of these studies reveal that AB toxins may have a beneficial application as adjuvants for the enhancement of immune protection against infection and autoimmunity. Here, we examine similarities and differences in the structure and function of bacterial and plant AB toxins that underlie their toxicity and their exceptional properties as immunomodulators for stimulating immune responses against infectious disease and for immune suppression of organ-specific autoimmunity. PMID:22069653

  19. Overview of Scorpion Species from China and Their Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Zhijian; Di, Zhiyong; Wu, Yingliang; Li, Wenxin

    2014-01-01

    Scorpions are one of the most ancient groups of terrestrial animals. They have maintained a steady morphology over more than 400 million years of evolution. Their venom arsenals for capturing prey and defending against predators may play a critical role in their ancient and conservative appearance. In the current review, we present the scorpion fauna of China: 53 species covering five families and 12 genera. We also systematically list toxins or genes from Chinese scorpion species, involving eight species covering four families. Furthermore, we review the diverse functions of typical toxins from Chinese scorpion species, involving Na+ channel modulators, K+ channel blockers, antimicrobial peptides and protease inhibitors. Using scorpion species and their toxins from China as an example, we build the bridge between scorpion species and their toxins, which helps us to understand the molecular and functional diversity of scorpion venom arsenal, the dynamic and functional evolution of scorpion toxins, and the potential relationships of scorpion species and their toxins. PMID:24577583

  20. Botulinum toxin A for the Treatment of Overactive Bladder.

    PubMed

    Hsieh, Po-Fan; Chiu, Hung-Chieh; Chen, Kuan-Chieh; Chang, Chao-Hsiang; Chou, Eric Chieh-Lung

    2016-02-29

    The standard treatment for overactive bladder starts with patient education and behavior therapies, followed by antimuscarinic agents. For patients with urgency urinary incontinence refractory to antimuscarinic therapy, currently both American Urological Association (AUA) and European Association of Urology (EAU) guidelines suggested that intravesical injection of botulinum toxin A should be offered. The mechanism of botulinum toxin A includes inhibition of vesicular release of neurotransmitters and the axonal expression of capsaicin and purinergic receptors in the suburothelium, as well as attenuation of central sensitization. Multiple randomized, placebo-controlled trials demonstrated that botulinum toxin A to be an effective treatment for patients with refractory idiopathic or neurogenic detrusor overactivity. The urinary incontinence episodes, maximum cystometric capacity, and maximum detrusor pressure were improved greater by botulinum toxin A compared to placebo. The adverse effects of botulinum toxin A, such as urinary retention and urinary tract infection, were primarily localized to the lower urinary tract. Therefore, botulinum toxin A offers an effective treatment option for patients with refractory overactive bladder.

  1. Botulinum toxin type a for chronic migraine.

    PubMed

    Ashkenazi, Avi

    2010-03-01

    Chronic migraine (CM) is the leading cause of chronic daily headache, a common and debilitating headache syndrome. The management of CM patients is challenging, with only limited benefit from available oral preventive medications. Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) has been used extensively to treat disorders associated with increased muscle tone. More recent scientific data support an analgesic effect of the toxin. The pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic profiles of BoNT make it an appealing candidate for migraine prevention. Results from older clinical trials on the efficacy of the toxin in CM were inconclusive. However, recent trials using more stringent inclusion criteria have shown positive results, supporting the use of the toxin in some patients with this disorder. This review summarizes the scientific data on the analgesic properties of BoNT, as well as the clinical data on the efficacy of the toxin in treating CM.

  2. Binding of epsilon-toxin from Clostridium perfringens in the nervous system.

    PubMed

    Dorca-Arévalo, Jonatan; Soler-Jover, Alex; Gibert, Maryse; Popoff, Michel R; Martín-Satué, Mireia; Blasi, Juan

    2008-09-18

    Epsilon-toxin (epsilon-toxin), produced by Clostridium perfringens type D, is the main agent responsible for enterotoxaemia in livestock. Neurological disorders are a characteristic of the onset of toxin poisoning. Epsilon-Toxin accumulates specifically in the central nervous system, where it produces a glutamatergic-mediated excitotoxic effect. However, no detailed study of putative binding structures in the nervous tissue has been carried out to date. Here we attempt to identify specific acceptor moieties and cell targets for epsilon-toxin, not only in the mouse nervous system but also in the brains of sheep and cattle. An epsilon-toxin-GFP fusion protein was produced and used to incubate brain sections, which were then analyzed by confocal microscopy. The results clearly show specific binding of epsilon-toxin to myelin structures. epsilon-Prototoxin-GFP and epsilon-toxin-GFP, the inactive and active forms of the toxin, respectively, showed identical results. By means of pronase E treatment, we found that the binding was mainly associated to a protein component of the myelin. Myelinated peripheral nerve fibres were also stained by epsilon-toxin. Moreover, the binding to myelin was not only restricted to rodents, but was also found in humans, sheep and cattle. Curiously, in the brains of both sheep and cattle, the toxin strongly stained the vascular endothelium, a result that may explain the differences in potency and effect between species. Although the binding of epsilon-toxin to myelin does not directly explain its neurotoxic effect, this feature opens up a new line of enquiry into its mechanism of toxicity and establishes the usefulness of this toxin for the study of the mammalian nervous system.

  3. Antibody to ricin a chain hinders intracellular routing of toxin and protects cells even after toxin has been internalized.

    PubMed

    Song, Kejing; Mize, R Ranney; Marrero, Luis; Corti, Miriam; Kirk, Jason M; Pincus, Seth H

    2013-01-01

    Mechanisms of antibody-mediated neutralization are of much interest. For plant and bacterial A-B toxins, A chain mediates toxicity and B chain binds target cells. It is generally accepted and taught that antibody (Ab) neutralizes by preventing toxin binding to cells. Yet for some toxins, ricin included, anti-A chain Abs afford greater protection than anti-B. The mechanism(s) whereby Abs to the A chain neutralize toxins are not understood. We use quantitative confocal imaging, neutralization assays, and other techniques to study how anti-A chain Abs function to protect cells. Without Ab, ricin enters cells and penetrates to the endoplasmic reticulum within 15 min. Within 45-60 min, ricin entering and being expelled from cells reaches equilibrium. These results are consistent with previous observations, and support the validity of our novel methodology. The addition of neutralizing Ab causes ricin accumulation at the cell surface, delays internalization, and postpones retrograde transport of ricin. Ab binds ricin for >6hr as they traffic together through the cell. Ab protects cells even when administered hours after exposure. CONCLUSIONS/KEY FINDINGS: We demonstrate the dynamic nature of the interaction between the host cell and toxin, and how Ab can alter the balance in favor of the cell. Ab blocks ricin's entry into cells, hinders its intracellular routing, and can protect even after ricin is present in the target organelle, providing evidence that the major site of neutralization is intracellular. These data add toxins to the list of pathogenic agents that can be neutralized intracellularly and explain the in vivo efficacy of delayed administration of anti-toxin Abs. The results encourage the use of post-exposure passive Ab therapy, and show the importance of the A chain as a target of Abs.

  4. Antibody to Ricin A Chain Hinders Intracellular Routing of Toxin and Protects Cells Even after Toxin Has Been Internalized

    PubMed Central

    Song, Kejing; Mize, R. Ranney; Marrero, Luis; Corti, Miriam; Kirk, Jason M.; Pincus, Seth H.

    2013-01-01

    Background Mechanisms of antibody-mediated neutralization are of much interest. For plant and bacterial A-B toxins, A chain mediates toxicity and B chain binds target cells. It is generally accepted and taught that antibody (Ab) neutralizes by preventing toxin binding to cells. Yet for some toxins, ricin included, anti-A chain Abs afford greater protection than anti-B. The mechanism(s) whereby Abs to the A chain neutralize toxins are not understood. Methodology/Principal Findings We use quantitative confocal imaging, neutralization assays, and other techniques to study how anti-A chain Abs function to protect cells. Without Ab, ricin enters cells and penetrates to the endoplasmic reticulum within 15 min. Within 45–60 min, ricin entering and being expelled from cells reaches equilibrium. These results are consistent with previous observations, and support the validity of our novel methodology. The addition of neutralizing Ab causes ricin accumulation at the cell surface, delays internalization, and postpones retrograde transport of ricin. Ab binds ricin for >6hr as they traffic together through the cell. Ab protects cells even when administered hours after exposure. Conclusions/Key Findings We demonstrate the dynamic nature of the interaction between the host cell and toxin, and how Ab can alter the balance in favor of the cell. Ab blocks ricin’s entry into cells, hinders its intracellular routing, and can protect even after ricin is present in the target organelle, providing evidence that the major site of neutralization is intracellular. These data add toxins to the list of pathogenic agents that can be neutralized intracellularly and explain the in vivo efficacy of delayed administration of anti-toxin Abs. The results encourage the use of post-exposure passive Ab therapy, and show the importance of the A chain as a target of Abs. PMID:23638075

  5. Drug-, toxin-, and radiation therapy-induced eosinophilic pneumonia.

    PubMed

    Solomon, Joshua; Schwarz, Marvin

    2006-04-01

    A significant number of drugs and toxins have been associated with eosinophilic pneumonia. Antibiotics and NSAID, are the most commonly reported drugs. Toxins suspected to cause eosinophilic pneumonia include cigarette smoke and illicit drugs. Drug- or toxin-induced eosinophilic pneumonia is indistinguishable from idiopathic acute or chronic eosinophilic pneumonia by clinical, radiographic, and histopathologic criteria. The diagnosis is supported by a temporal relationship to a drug or toxin. The condition usually resolves with removal from the agent and recurs with rechallenge. Treatment involves discontinuation of the offending drug or toxin and treatment with corticosteroids in severe respiratory failure. There are also mass outbreaks of eosinophilic pneumonia reported, such as the toxic-oil syndrome in 1981 and the eosinophilia-myalgia syndrome related to the ingestion of L-tryptophan in 1989. A recent report has described an outbreak of acute eosinophilic pneumonia found in soldiers in Iraq. Radiation therapy has also been associated with the development of eosinophilic pneumonia in patients receiving this treatment for breast cancer.

  6. Use of lactose against the deadly biological toxin ricin.

    PubMed

    Nagatsuka, Takehiro; Uzawa, Hirotaka; Ohsawa, Isaac; Seto, Yasuo; Nishida, Yoshihiro

    2010-04-01

    Developing a technology for detecting and decontaminating biological toxins is needed. Ricin from Ricinus communis is a highly poisonous toxin; it was formerly used for an assassination in London and in postal attacks in the United States. Ricin is readily available from castor beans and could be used as a biological agent. We propose using glycotechnology against the illegal use of ricin. Lactose (a natural ligand of this toxin) was incorporated into polyacrylamide-based glycopolymers at variable sugar densities (18-100%) and evaluated with surface plasmon resonance (SPR) spectroscopy and the real agent, ricin. Glycopolymers (18-65% lactose densities) effectively interfered with the toxin-lactoside adhesion event (>99% efficiency within 20 min). This supported the notion of using the mammary sugar lactose against a deadly biological toxin.

  7. Structural Insights into Bacillus thuringiensis Cry, Cyt and Parasporin Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Chengchen; Wang, Bi-Cheng; Yu, Ziniu; Sun, Ming

    2014-01-01

    Since the first X-ray structure of Cry3Aa was revealed in 1991, numerous structures of B. thuringiensis toxins have been determined and published. In recent years, functional studies on the mode of action and resistance mechanism have been proposed, which notably promoted the developments of biological insecticides and insect-resistant transgenic crops. With the exploration of known pore-forming toxins (PFTs) structures, similarities between PFTs and B. thuringiensis toxins have provided great insights into receptor binding interactions and conformational changes from water-soluble to membrane pore-forming state of B. thuringiensis toxins. This review mainly focuses on the latest discoveries of the toxin working mechanism, with the emphasis on structural related progress. Based on the structural features, B. thuringiensis Cry, Cyt and parasporin toxins could be divided into three categories: three-domain type α-PFTs, Cyt toxin type β-PFTs and aerolysin type β-PFTs. Structures from each group are elucidated and discussed in relation to the latest data, respectively. PMID:25229189

  8. Acid Sphingomyelinase Promotes Cellular Internalization of Clostridium perfringens Iota-Toxin.

    PubMed

    Nagahama, Masahiro; Takehara, Masaya; Miyamoto, Kazuaki; Ishidoh, Kazumi; Kobayashi, Keiko

    2018-05-20

    Clostridium perfringens iota-toxin is a binary actin-ADP-ribosylating toxin composed of the enzymatic component Ia and receptor binding component Ib. Ib binds to a cell surface receptor, forms Ib oligomer in lipid rafts, and associates with Ia. The Ia-Ib complex then internalizes by endocytosis. Here, we showed that acid sphingomyelinase (ASMase) facilitates the cellular uptake of iota-toxin. Inhibitions of ASMase and lysosomal exocytosis by respective blockers depressed cell rounding induced by iota-toxin. The cytotoxicity of the toxin increased in the presence of Ca 2+ in extracellular fluids. Ib entered target cells in the presence but not the absence of Ca 2+ . Ib induced the extracellular release of ASMase in the presence of Ca 2+ . ASMase siRNA prevented the cell rounding induced by iota-toxin. Furthermore, treatment of the cells with Ib resulted in the production of ceramide in cytoplasmic vesicles. These observations showed that ASMase promotes the internalization of iota-toxin into target cells.

  9. Acid Sphingomyelinase Promotes Cellular Internalization of Clostridium perfringens Iota-Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Nagahama, Masahiro; Takehara, Masaya; Miyamoto, Kazuaki; Ishidoh, Kazumi; Kobayashi, Keiko

    2018-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens iota-toxin is a binary actin-ADP-ribosylating toxin composed of the enzymatic component Ia and receptor binding component Ib. Ib binds to a cell surface receptor, forms Ib oligomer in lipid rafts, and associates with Ia. The Ia-Ib complex then internalizes by endocytosis. Here, we showed that acid sphingomyelinase (ASMase) facilitates the cellular uptake of iota-toxin. Inhibitions of ASMase and lysosomal exocytosis by respective blockers depressed cell rounding induced by iota-toxin. The cytotoxicity of the toxin increased in the presence of Ca2+ in extracellular fluids. Ib entered target cells in the presence but not the absence of Ca2+. Ib induced the extracellular release of ASMase in the presence of Ca2+. ASMase siRNA prevented the cell rounding induced by iota-toxin. Furthermore, treatment of the cells with Ib resulted in the production of ceramide in cytoplasmic vesicles. These observations showed that ASMase promotes the internalization of iota-toxin into target cells. PMID:29783772

  10. Dominant-negative inhibitors of the Clostridium perfringens epsilon-toxin.

    PubMed

    Pelish, Teal M; McClain, Mark S

    2009-10-23

    The Clostridium perfringens epsilon-toxin is responsible for a severe, often lethal intoxication. In this study, we characterized dominant-negative inhibitors of the epsilon-toxin. Site-specific mutations were introduced into the gene encoding epsilon-toxin, and recombinant proteins were expressed in Escherichia coli. Paired cysteine substitutions were introduced at locations predicted to form a disulfide bond. One cysteine in each mutant was introduced into the membrane insertion domain of the toxin; the second cysteine was introduced into the protein backbone. Mutant proteins with cysteine substitutions at amino acid positions I51/A114 and at V56/F118 lacked detectable cytotoxic activity in a MDCK cell assay. Cytotoxic activity could be reconstituted in both mutant proteins by incubation with dithiothreitol, indicating that the lack of cytotoxic activity was attributable to the formation of a disulfide bond. Fluorescent labeling of the cysteines also indicated that the introduced cysteines participated in a disulfide bond. When equimolar mixtures of wild-type epsilon-toxin and mutant proteins were added to MDCK cells, the I51C/A114C and V56C/F118C mutant proteins each inhibited the activity of wild-type epsilon-toxin. Further analysis of the inhibitory activity of the I51C/A114C and V56C/F118C mutant proteins indicated that these proteins inhibit the ability of the active toxin to form stable oligomeric complexes in the context of MDCK cells. These results provide further insight into the properties of dominant-negative inhibitors of oligomeric pore-forming toxins and provide the basis for developing new therapeutics for treating intoxication by epsilon-toxin.

  11. Cellular and molecular actions of binary toxins possessing ADP-ribosyltransferase activity.

    PubMed

    Considine, R V; Simpson, L L

    1991-01-01

    Clostridial organisms produce a number of binary toxins. Thus far, three complete toxins (botulinum, perfringens and spiroforme) and one incomplete toxin (difficile) have been identified. In the case of complete toxins, there is a heavy chain component (Mr approximately 100,000) that binds to target cells and helps create a docking site for the light chain component (Mr approximately 50,000). The latter is an enzyme that possesses mono(ADP-ribosyl)transferase activity. The toxins appear to proceed through a three step sequence to exert their effects, including a binding step, an internalization step and an intracellular poisoning step. The substrate for the toxins is G-actin. By virtue of ADP-ribosylating monomeric actin, the toxins prevent polymerization as well as promoting depolymerization. The most characteristic cellular effect of the toxins is alteration of the cytoskeleton, which leads directly to changes in cellular morphology and indirectly to changes in cell function (e.g. release of chemical mediators). Binary toxins capable of modifying actin are likely to be useful tools in the study of cell biology.

  12. Functional analysis of neutralizing antibodies against Clostridium perfringens epsilon-toxin.

    PubMed

    McClain, Mark S; Cover, Timothy L

    2007-04-01

    The Clostridium perfringens epsilon-toxin causes a severe, often fatal illness (enterotoxemia) characterized by cardiac, pulmonary, kidney, and brain edema. In this study, we examined the activities of two neutralizing monoclonal antibodies against the C. perfringens epsilon-toxin. Both antibodies inhibited epsilon-toxin cytotoxicity towards cultured MDCK cells and inhibited the ability of the toxin to form pores in the plasma membranes of cells, as shown by staining cells with the membrane-impermeant dye 7-aminoactinomycin D. Using an antibody competition enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), a peptide array, and analysis of mutant toxins, we mapped the epitope recognized by one of the neutralizing monoclonal antibodies to amino acids 134 to 145. The antibody competition ELISA and analysis of mutant toxins suggest that the second neutralizing monoclonal antibody also recognizes an epitope in close proximity to this region. The region comprised of amino acids 134 to 145 overlaps an amphipathic loop corresponding to the putative membrane insertion domain of the toxin. Identifying the epitopes recognized by these neutralizing antibodies constitutes an important first step in the development of therapeutic agents that could be used to counter the effects of the epsilon-toxin.

  13. Staphylococcus Alpha-Toxin Action on the Rabbit Iris: Toxic Effects and Their Inhibition.

    PubMed

    Arana, Angela M; Bierdeman, Michael A; Balzli, Charles L; Tang, Aihua; Caballero, Armando R; Patel, Rupesh; O'Callaghan, Richard J

    2015-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus infection of the anterior chamber can occur after cataract surgery, causing inflammation and extensive damage to the iris. Alpha-toxin, the most potent S. aureus corneal toxin, was tested as a possible mediator of damage to the iris, and alpha-toxin anti-serum and a chemical toxin inhibitor were tested as potential pathology-reducing agents. The hemolytic activity of alpha-toxin and its inhibition by a chemical inhibitor or anti-serum were quantified in vitro. Purified alpha-toxin, heat-inactivated toxin, or alpha-toxin plus normal serum, alpha-toxin anti-serum, or the chemical inhibitor, methyl-β-cyclodextrin-cholesterol (CD-cholesterol), was injected into the rabbit anterior chamber. Pathological changes were photographed, quantified by slit-lamp examination (SLE) scoring, and further documented by histopathological analysis. At five hours post-injection, eyes injected with alpha-toxin or heat-inactivated toxin had a mean SLE score of 7.3 ± 0.59 or 0.84 ± 0.19, respectively. Active toxin caused moderate to severe iris edema, severe erosion of the iris, and mild to moderate fibrin accumulation in the anterior chamber. Alpha-toxin plus anti-serum or CD-cholesterol, in contrast to alpha-toxin alone, caused less iris edema and epithelium sloughing as well as significantly lower SLE scores than eyes receiving alpha-toxin alone (p ≤ 0.019). Alpha-toxin caused extensive iris damage and inflammation, and either anti-alpha-toxin anti-serum or CD-cholesterol was able to significantly reduce toxin-mediated damage and inflammation.

  14. Dysport: pharmacological properties and factors that influence toxin action.

    PubMed

    Pickett, Andy

    2009-10-01

    The pharmacological properties of Dysport that influence toxin action are reviewed and compared with other botulinum toxin products. In particular, the subject of diffusion is examined and discussed based upon the evidence that currently exists, both from laboratory studies and from clinical data. Diffusion of botulinum toxin products is not related to the size of the toxin complex in the product since the complex dissociates under physiological conditions, releasing the naked neurotoxin to act. The active neurotoxin in Type A products is the same and therefore diffusion is equal when equal doses are administered.

  15. How Parkinsonian Toxins Dysregulate the Autophagy Machinery

    PubMed Central

    Dagda, Ruben K.; Das Banerjee, Tania; Janda, Elzbieta

    2013-01-01

    Since their discovery, Parkinsonian toxins (6-hydroxydopamine, MPP+, paraquat, and rotenone) have been widely employed as in vivo and in vitro chemical models of Parkinson’s disease (PD). Alterations in mitochondrial homeostasis, protein quality control pathways, and more recently, autophagy/mitophagy have been implicated in neurotoxin models of PD. Here, we highlight the molecular mechanisms by which different PD toxins dysregulate autophagy/mitophagy and how alterations of these pathways play beneficial or detrimental roles in dopamine neurons. The convergent and divergent effects of PD toxins on mitochondrial function and autophagy/mitophagy are also discussed in this review. Furthermore, we propose new diagnostic tools and discuss how pharmacological modulators of autophagy/mitophagy can be developed as disease-modifying treatments for PD. Finally, we discuss the critical need to identify endogenous and synthetic forms of PD toxins and develop efficient health preventive programs to mitigate the risk of developing PD. PMID:24217228

  16. Arrangement of the Clostridium baratii F7 Toxin Gene Cluster with Identification of a σ Factor That Recognizes the Botulinum Toxin Gene Cluster Promoters

    DOE PAGES

    Dover, Nir; Barash, Jason R.; Burke, Julianne N.; ...

    2014-05-22

    Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is the most poisonous substances known and its eight toxin types (A to H) are distinguished by the inability of polyclonal antibodies that neutralize one toxin type to neutralize any of the other seven toxin types. Infant botulism, an intestinal toxemia orphan disease, is the most common form of human botulism in the United States. It results from swallowed spores of Clostridium botulinum (or rarely, neurotoxigenic Clostridium butyricum or Clostridium baratii) that germinate and temporarily colonize the lumen of the large intestine, where, as vegetative cells, they produce botulinum toxin. Botulinum neurotoxin is encoded by the bontmore » gene that is part of a toxin gene cluster that includes several accessory genes. In this paper, we sequenced for the first time the complete botulinum neurotoxin gene cluster of nonproteolytic C. baratii type F7. Like the type E and the nonproteolytic type F6 botulinum toxin gene clusters, the C. baratii type F7 had an orfX toxin gene cluster that lacked the regulatory botR gene which is found in proteolytic C. botulinum strains and codes for an alternative σ factor. In the absence of botR, we identified a putative alternative regulatory gene located upstream of the C. baratii type F7 toxin gene cluster. This putative regulatory gene codes for a predicted σ factor that contains DNA-binding-domain homologues to the DNA-binding domains both of BotR and of other members of the TcdR-related group 5 of the σ 70 family that are involved in the regulation of toxin gene expression in clostridia. We showed that this TcdR-related protein in association with RNA polymerase core enzyme specifically binds to the C. baratii type F7 botulinum toxin gene cluster promoters. Finally, this TcdR-related protein may therefore be involved in regulating the expression of the genes of the botulinum toxin gene cluster in neurotoxigenic C. baratii.« less

  17. Crystal structure of Clostridium difficile toxin A

    SciTech Connect

    Chumbler, Nicole M.; Rutherford, Stacey A.; Zhang, Zhifen

    Clostridium difficile infection is the leading cause of hospital-acquired diarrhoea and pseudomembranous colitis. Disease is mediated by the actions of two toxins, TcdA and TcdB, which cause the diarrhoea, as well as inflammation and necrosis within the colon. The toxins are large (308 and 270 kDa, respectively), homologous (47% amino acid identity) glucosyltransferases that target small GTPases within the host. The multidomain toxins enter cells by receptor-mediated endocytosis and, upon exposure to the low pH of the endosome, insert into and deliver two enzymatic domains across the membrane. Eukaryotic inositol-hexakisphosphate (InsP6) binds an autoprocessing domain to activate a proteolysis eventmore » that releases the N-terminal glucosyltransferase domain into the cytosol. Here, we report the crystal structure of a 1,832-amino-acid fragment of TcdA (TcdA 1832), which reveals a requirement for zinc in the mechanism of toxin autoprocessing and an extended delivery domain that serves as a scaffold for the hydrophobic α-helices involved in pH-dependent pore formation. A surface loop of the delivery domain whose sequence is strictly conserved among all large clostridial toxins is shown to be functionally important, and is highlighted for future efforts in the development of vaccines and novel therapeutics.« less

  18. Botulinum Toxin and Muscle Atrophy: A Wanted or Unwanted Effect.

    PubMed

    Durand, Paul D; Couto, Rafael A; Isakov, Raymond; Yoo, Donald B; Azizzadeh, Babak; Guyuron, Bahman; Zins, James E

    2016-04-01

    While the facial rejuvenating effect of botulinum toxin type A is well known and widespread, its use in body and facial contouring is less common. We first describe its use for deliberate muscle volume reduction, and then document instances of unanticipated and undesirable muscle atrophy. Finally, we investigate the potential long-term adverse effects of botulinum toxin-induced muscle atrophy. Although the use of botulinum toxin type A in the cosmetic patient has been extensively studied, there are several questions yet to be addressed. Does prolonged botulinum toxin treatment increase its duration of action? What is the mechanism of muscle atrophy and what is the cause of its reversibility once treatment has stopped? We proceed to examine how prolonged chemodenervation with botulinum toxin can increase its duration of effect and potentially contribute to muscle atrophy. Instances of inadvertent botulinum toxin-induced atrophy are also described. These include the "hourglass deformity" secondary to botulinum toxin type A treatment for migraine headaches, and a patient with atrophy of multiple facial muscles from injections for hemifacial spasm. Numerous reports demonstrate that muscle atrophy after botulinum toxin type A treatment occurs and is both reversible and temporary, with current literature supporting the notion that repeated chemodenervation with botulinum toxin likely responsible for both therapeutic and incidental temporary muscle atrophy. Furthermore, duration of response may be increased with subsequent treatments, thus minimizing frequency of reinjection. Practitioners should be aware of the temporary and reversible effect of botulinum toxin-induced muscle atrophy and be prepared to reassure patients on this matter. © 2016 The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, Inc. Reprints and permission: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. Potent antitumor activity of a urokinase-activated engineered anthrax toxin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Shihui; Aaronson, Hannah; Mitola, David J.; Leppla, Stephen H.; Bugge, Thomas H.

    2003-01-01

    The acquisition of cell-surface urokinase plasminogen activator activity is a hallmark of malignancy. We generated an engineered anthrax toxin that is activated by cell-surface urokinase in vivo and displays limited toxicity to normal tissue but broad and potent tumoricidal activity. Native anthrax toxin protective antigen, when administered with a chimeric anthrax toxin lethal factor, Pseudomonas exotoxin fusion protein, was extremely toxic to mice, causing rapid and fatal organ damage. Replacing the furin activation sequence in anthrax toxin protective antigen with an artificial peptide sequence efficiently activated by urokinase greatly attenuated toxicity to mice. In addition, the mutation conferred cell-surface urokinase-dependent toxin activation in vivo, as determined by using a panel of plasminogen, plasminogen activator, plasminogen activator receptor, and plasminogen activator inhibitor-deficient mice. Surprisingly, toxin activation critically depended on both urokinase plasminogen activator receptor and plasminogen in vivo, showing that both proteins are essential cofactors for the generation of cell-surface urokinase. The engineered toxin displayed potent tumor cell cytotoxicity to a spectrum of transplanted tumors of diverse origin and could eradicate established solid tumors. This tumoricidal activity depended strictly on tumor cell-surface plasminogen activation. The data show that a simple change of protease activation specificity converts anthrax toxin from a highly lethal to a potent tumoricidal agent.

  20. 9 CFR 121.4 - Overlap select agents and toxins.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... select agent or toxin to APHIS or CDC. (i) The seizure of any of the following overlap select agents and.... This report must be followed by submission of APHIS/CDC Form 4 within 7 calendar days after seizure of the overlap select agent or toxin. (ii) For all other overlap select agents or toxins, APHIS/CDC Form...

  1. Lethal effects of Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin are potentiated by alpha and perfringolysin-O toxins in a mouse model.

    PubMed

    Fernandez-Miyakawa, Mariano E; Jost, B Helen; Billington, Stephen J; Uzal, Francisco A

    2008-03-18

    Epsilon toxin (ETX) is the most important virulence factor of Clostridium perfringens type D. Two other important toxins, alpha toxin (CPA) and perfringolysin-O (PFO), are encoded and potentially produced by most C. perfringens type D isolates. The biological effects of these toxins are dissimilar although they are all lethal. Since the possible interaction of these toxins during infection is unknown, the effects of CPA and PFO on the lethal activity of ETX were studied in a mouse model. Mice were injected intravenously or intragastrically with CPA or PFO with or without ETX. Sublethal doses of CPA or PFO did not affect the lethality of ETX when either was injected together with the latter intravenously. However, sublethal or lethal doses of CPA or PFO resulted in reduction of the survival time of mice injected simultaneously with ETX when compared with the intravenous effect of ETX injected alone. When PFO was inoculated intragastrically with ETX, a reduction of the survival time was observed. CPA did not alter the survival time when inoculated intragastrically with ETX. The results of the present study suggest that both CPA and PFO have the potential to enhance the ETX lethal effects during enterotoxemia in natural hosts such as sheep and goats.

  2. Modification of opiate agonist binding by pertussis toxin

    SciTech Connect

    Abood, M.E.; Lee, N.M.; Loh, H.H.

    1986-03-05

    Opiate agonist binding is decreased by GTP, suggesting the possible involvement of GTP binding proteins in regulation of opiate receptor binding. This possibility was addressed by asking whether pertussis toxin treatment, which results in ADP-ribosylation and modification of G proteins, would alter opiate agonist binding. The striatum was chosen for the initial brain area to be studied, since regulation of opiate action in this area had been shown to be modified by pertussis toxin. Treatment of striatal membranes with pertussis toxin results in up to a 55% decrease in /sup 3/(H)-DADLE binding as compared with membranes treated identically without toxin.more » This corresponds to a near complete ADP-ribosylation of both G proteins in the striatal membrane. The decrease in agonist binding appears to be due to an altered affinity of the receptor for agonist as opposed to a decrease in the number of sites. This effect of pertussis toxin on opiate agonist binding demonstrates the actual involvement of G proteins in regulation of opiate receptor binding.« less

  3. Isolation of isoelectrically pure cholera toxin for crystallization

    SciTech Connect

    Spangler, B.D.; Westbrook, E.M.

    1989-01-01

    We have determined that the failure of cholera toxin to crystallize well results from its isoelectric heterogeneity, which is probably due to a post-translational process such as deamidation of its B subunit. Every sample of cholera toxin we have examined from commercial or academic suppliers has been heterogeneous; heterogeneous cholera toxin does not crystallize satisfactorily. We have overcome this problem by using ion-exchange fast protein liquid chromatography (FPLC) to obtain an isoelectrically homogeneous species of cholera toxin. Homogeneous cholera toxin crystallizes readily, forming single, nonmosaic crystals suitable for x-ray diffraction studies. For this process, protein was applied to a MonoQmore » ion-exchange column, then eluted with an isocratic low salt buffer followed by a linear salt gradient (0-100 mM NaCl). Column fractions were analyzed on isoelectric focusing gels, and those fractions containing the desired homogeneous species were pooled and concentrated. Crystals formed within 24 to 48 hours in a MOPS/PEG buffer, which made use of slow isoelectric precipitation to induce crystallization. 23 refs., 6 figs.« less

  4. Botulinum toxin treatment of hemifacial spasm.

    PubMed Central

    Elston, J S

    1986-01-01

    Six patients with hemifacial spasm were treated with injections of botulinum toxin A into the orbicularis oculi; the abnormal movements around the eye were relieved for an average of 15 weeks. There were no systemic or significant local side effects, and in view of the risks involved in neurosurgical treatment, a trial of botulinum toxin injections is recommended in the first instance in this condition. PMID:3746313

  5. ADP-ribosylation of transducin by pertussis toxin

    SciTech Connect

    Watkins, P.A.; Burns, D.L.; Kanaho, Y.

    1985-11-05

    Transducin, the guanyl nucleotide-binding regulatory protein of retinal rod outer segments that couples the photon receptor, rhodopsin, with the light-activated cGMP phosphodiesterase, can be resolved into two functional components, T alpha and T beta gamma. T alpha (39 kDa), which is (TSP)ADP-ribosylated by pertussis toxin and (TSP)NAD in rod outer segments and in purified transducin, was also labeled by the toxin after separation from T beta gamma (36 kDa and approximately 10 kDa); neither component of T beta gamma was a pertussis toxin substrate. Labeling of T alpha was enhanced by T beta gamma and was maximal at approximately 1:1more » molar ratio of T alpha : T beta gamma. Limited proteolysis by trypsin of T alpha in the presence of guanyl-5'-yl imidodiphosphate (Gpp(NH)p) resulted in the sequential appearance of proteins of 38 and TS kDa. The amino terminus of both 38- and TS-kDa proteins was leucine, whereas that of T alpha could not be identified and was assumed to be blocked. The TS-kDa peptide was not a pertussis toxin substrate. Labeling of the 38-kDa protein was poor and was not enhanced by T beta gamma. Trypsin treatment of (TSP)ADP-ribosyl-T alpha produced a labeled 37-38-kDa doublet followed by appearance of radioactivity at the dye front. It appears, therefore, that, although the 38-kDa protein was poor toxin substrate, it contained the ADP-ribosylation site. Without rhodopsin, labeling of T alpha (in the presence of T beta gamma) was unaffected by Gpp(NH)p, guanosine 5'-O-(thiotriphosphate) (GTP gamma S), GTP, GDP, and guanosine 5'-O-(thiodiphosphate) (GDP beta S) but was increased by ATP. When photolyzed rhodopsin and T beta gamma were present, Gpp(NH)p and GTP gamma S decreased (TSP)ADP-ribosylation by pertussis toxin. Thus, pertussis toxin-catalyzed (TSP)ADP-ribosylation of T alpha was affected by nucleotides, rhodopsin and light in addition to T beta gamma.« less

  6. Modelling the Stoichiometric Regulation of C-Rich Toxins in Marine Dinoflagellates.

    PubMed

    Pinna, Adriano; Pezzolesi, Laura; Pistocchi, Rossella; Vanucci, Silvana; Ciavatta, Stefano; Polimene, Luca

    2015-01-01

    Toxin production in marine microalgae was previously shown to be tightly coupled with cellular stoichiometry. The highest values of cellular toxin are in fact mainly associated with a high carbon to nutrient cellular ratio. In particular, the cellular accumulation of C-rich toxins (i.e., with C:N > 6.6) can be stimulated by both N and P deficiency. Dinoflagellates are the main producers of C-rich toxins and may represent a serious threat for human health and the marine ecosystem. As such, the development of a numerical model able to predict how toxin production is stimulated by nutrient supply/deficiency is of primary utility for both scientific and management purposes. In this work we have developed a mechanistic model describing the stoichiometric regulation of C-rich toxins in marine dinoflagellates. To this purpose, a new formulation describing toxin production and fate was embedded in the European Regional Seas Ecosystem Model (ERSEM), here simplified to describe a monospecific batch culture. Toxin production was assumed to be composed by two distinct additive terms; the first is a constant fraction of algal production and is assumed to take place at any physiological conditions. The second term is assumed to be dependent on algal biomass and to be stimulated by internal nutrient deficiency. By using these assumptions, the model reproduced the concentrations and temporal evolution of toxins observed in cultures of Ostreopsis cf. ovata, a benthic/epiphytic dinoflagellate producing C-rich toxins named ovatoxins. The analysis of simulations and their comparison with experimental data provided a conceptual model linking toxin production and nutritional status in this species. The model was also qualitatively validated by using independent literature data, and the results indicate that our formulation can be also used to simulate toxin dynamics in other dinoflagellates. Our model represents an important step towards the simulation and prediction of marine algal

  7. Mass Spectrometric Identification and Differentiation of Botulinum Neurotoxins through Toxin Proteomics.

    PubMed

    Kalb, Suzanne R; Barr, John R

    2013-08-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) cause the disease botulism, which can be lethal if untreated. There are seven known serotypes of BoNT, A-G, defined by their response to antisera. Many serotypes are distinguished into differing subtypes based on amino acid sequence and immunogenic properties, and some subtypes are further differentiated into toxin variants. Toxin characterization is important as different types of BoNT can respond differently to medical countermeasures for botulism, and characterization of the toxin can aid in epidemiologic and forensic investigations. Proteomic techniques have been established to determine the serotype, subtype, or toxin variant of BoNT. These techniques involve digestion of the toxin into peptides, tandem mass spectrometric (MS/MS) analysis of the peptides, and database searching to identify the BoNT protein. These techniques demonstrate the capability to detect BoNT and its neurotoxin-associated proteins, and differentiate the toxin from other toxins which are up to 99.9% identical in some cases. This differentiation can be accomplished from toxins present in a complex matrix such as stool, food, or bacterial cultures and no DNA is required.

  8. The Biology of Pichia membranifaciens Killer Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Belda, Ignacio; Ruiz, Javier; Alonso, Alejandro; Marquina, Domingo; Santos, Antonio

    2017-01-01

    The killer phenomenon is defined as the ability of some yeast to secrete toxins that are lethal to other sensitive yeasts and filamentous fungi. Since the discovery of strains of Saccharomyces cerevisiae capable of secreting killer toxins, much information has been gained regarding killer toxins and this fact has substantially contributed knowledge on fundamental aspects of cell biology and yeast genetics. The killer phenomenon has been studied in Pichia membranifaciens for several years, during which two toxins have been described. PMKT and PMKT2 are proteins of low molecular mass that bind to primary receptors located in the cell wall structure of sensitive yeast cells, linear (1→6)-β-d-glucans and mannoproteins for PMKT and PMKT2, respectively. Cwp2p also acts as a secondary receptor for PMKT. Killing of sensitive cells by PMKT is characterized by ionic movements across plasma membrane and an acidification of the intracellular pH triggering an activation of the High Osmolarity Glycerol (HOG) pathway. On the contrary, our investigations showed a mechanism of killing in which cells are arrested at an early S-phase by high concentrations of PMKT2. However, we concluded that induced mortality at low PMKT2 doses and also PMKT is indeed of an apoptotic nature. Killer yeasts and their toxins have found potential applications in several fields: in food and beverage production, as biocontrol agents, in yeast bio-typing, and as novel antimycotic agents. Accordingly, several applications have been found for P. membranifaciens killer toxins, ranging from pre- and post-harvest biocontrol of plant pathogens to applications during wine fermentation and ageing (inhibition of Botrytis cinerea, Brettanomyces bruxellensis, etc.). PMID:28333108

  9. Oligomerization of Clostridium perfringens Epsilon Toxin Is Dependent upon Caveolins 1 and 2

    PubMed Central

    Fennessey, Christine M.; Sheng, Jinsong; Rubin, Donald H.; McClain, Mark S.

    2012-01-01

    Evidence from multiple studies suggests that Clostridium perfringens ε-toxin is a pore-forming toxin, assembling into oligomeric complexes in the plasma membrane of sensitive cells. In a previous study, we used gene-trap mutagenesis to identify mammalian factors contributing to toxin activity, including caveolin-2 (CAV2). In this study, we demonstrate the importance of caveolin-2 and its interaction partner, caveolin-1 (CAV1), in ε-toxin-induced cytotoxicity. Using CAV2-specific shRNA in a toxin-sensitive human kidney cell line, ACHN, we confirmed that cells deficient in CAV2 exhibit increased resistance to ε-toxin. Similarly, using CAV1-specific shRNA, we demonstrate that cells deficient in CAV1 also exhibit increased resistance to the toxin. Immunoprecipitation of CAV1 and CAV2 from ε-toxin-treated ACHN cells demonstrated interaction of both CAV1 and -2 with the toxin. Furthermore, blue-native PAGE indicated that the toxin and caveolins were components of a 670 kDa protein complex. Although ε-toxin binding was only slightly perturbed in caveolin-deficient cells, oligomerization of the toxin was dramatically reduced in both CAV1- and CAV2-deficient cells. These results indicate that CAV1 and -2 potentiate ε-toxin induced cytotoxicity by promoting toxin oligomerization – an event which is requisite for pore formation and, by extension, cell death. PMID:23056496

  10. Oligomerization of Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin is dependent upon caveolins 1 and 2.

    PubMed

    Fennessey, Christine M; Sheng, Jinsong; Rubin, Donald H; McClain, Mark S

    2012-01-01

    Evidence from multiple studies suggests that Clostridium perfringens ε-toxin is a pore-forming toxin, assembling into oligomeric complexes in the plasma membrane of sensitive cells. In a previous study, we used gene-trap mutagenesis to identify mammalian factors contributing to toxin activity, including caveolin-2 (CAV2). In this study, we demonstrate the importance of caveolin-2 and its interaction partner, caveolin-1 (CAV1), in ε-toxin-induced cytotoxicity. Using CAV2-specific shRNA in a toxin-sensitive human kidney cell line, ACHN, we confirmed that cells deficient in CAV2 exhibit increased resistance to ε-toxin. Similarly, using CAV1-specific shRNA, we demonstrate that cells deficient in CAV1 also exhibit increased resistance to the toxin. Immunoprecipitation of CAV1 and CAV2 from ε-toxin-treated ACHN cells demonstrated interaction of both CAV1 and -2 with the toxin. Furthermore, blue-native PAGE indicated that the toxin and caveolins were components of a 670 kDa protein complex. Although ε-toxin binding was only slightly perturbed in caveolin-deficient cells, oligomerization of the toxin was dramatically reduced in both CAV1- and CAV2-deficient cells. These results indicate that CAV1 and -2 potentiate ε-toxin induced cytotoxicity by promoting toxin oligomerization - an event which is requisite for pore formation and, by extension, cell death.

  11. Anthrax toxin-induced rupture of artificial lipid bilayer membranes

    PubMed Central

    Nablo, Brian J.; Panchal, Rekha G.; Bavari, Sina; Nguyen, Tam L.; Gussio, Rick; Ribot, Wil; Friedlander, Art; Chabot, Donald; Reiner, Joseph E.; Robertson, Joseph W. F.; Balijepalli, Arvind; Halverson, Kelly M.; Kasianowicz, John J.

    2013-01-01

    We demonstrate experimentally that anthrax toxin complexes rupture artificial lipid bilayer membranes when isolated from the blood of infected animals. When the solution pH is temporally acidified to mimic that process in endosomes, recombinant anthrax toxin forms an irreversibly bound complex, which also destabilizes membranes. The results suggest an alternative mechanism for the translocation of anthrax toxin into the cytoplasm. PMID:23947891

  12. Anthrax toxin-induced rupture of artificial lipid bilayer membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nablo, Brian J.; Panchal, Rekha G.; Bavari, Sina; Nguyen, Tam L.; Gussio, Rick; Ribot, Wil; Friedlander, Art; Chabot, Donald; Reiner, Joseph E.; Robertson, Joseph W. F.; Balijepalli, Arvind; Halverson, Kelly M.; Kasianowicz, John J.

    2013-08-01

    We demonstrate experimentally that anthrax toxin complexes rupture artificial lipid bilayer membranes when isolated from the blood of infected animals. When the solution pH is temporally acidified to mimic that process in endosomes, recombinant anthrax toxin forms an irreversibly bound complex, which also destabilizes membranes. The results suggest an alternative mechanism for the translocation of anthrax toxin into the cytoplasm.

  13. Structure and Orientation of a Voltage-Sensor Toxin in Lipid Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Jung, Hyun Ho; Jung, Hoi Jong; Milescu, Mirela; Lee, Chul Won; Lee, Seungkyu; Lee, Ju Yeon; Eu, Young-Jae; Kim, Ha Hyung; Swartz, Kenton J.; Kim, Jae Il

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Amphipathic protein toxins from tarantula venom inhibit voltage-activated potassium (Kv) channels by binding to a critical helix-turn-helix motif termed the voltage sensor paddle. Although these toxins partition into membranes to bind the paddle motif, their structure and orientation within the membrane are unknown. We investigated the interaction of a tarantula toxin named SGTx with membranes using both fluorescence and NMR spectroscopy. Depth-dependent fluorescence-quenching experiments with brominated lipids suggest that Trp30 in SGTx is positioned ∼9 Å from the center of the bilayer. NMR spectra reveal that the inhibitor cystine knot structure of the toxin does not radically change upon membrane partitioning. Transferred cross-saturation NMR experiments indicate that the toxin's hydrophobic protrusion contacts the hydrophobic core of the membrane, whereas most surrounding polar residues remain at interfacial regions of the bilayer. The inferred orientation of the toxin reveals a twofold symmetry in the arrangement of basic and hydrophobic residues, a feature that is conserved among tarantula toxins. These results have important implications for regions of the toxin involved in recognizing membranes and voltage-sensor paddles, and for the mechanisms by which tarantula toxins alter the activity of different types of ion channels. PMID:20643084

  14. Proteinaceous toxins from three species of scorpaeniform fish (lionfish Pterois lunulata, devil stinger Inimicus japonicus and waspfish Hypodytes rubripinnis): close similarity in properties and primary structures to stonefish toxins.

    PubMed

    Kiriake, Aya; Suzuki, Yasuko; Nagashima, Yuji; Shiomi, Kazuo

    2013-08-01

    The crude toxins from three species of venomous fish (lionfish Pterois lunulata, devil stinger Inimicus japonicus and waspfish Hypodytes rubripinnis) belonging to the order Scorpaeniformes exhibited mouse-lethal, hemolytic, edema-forming and nociceptive activities. In view of the antigenic cross-reactivity with the stonefish toxins, the primary structures of the stonefish toxin-like toxins from the three scorpaeniform fish were determined by cDNA cloning using primers designed from the highly conserved sequences of the stonefish toxins. Based on the data obtained in gel filtration, immunoblotting and cDNA cloning, each toxin was judged to be a 160 kDa heterodimer composed of 80 kDa α- and β-subunits. The three scorpaeniform fish toxins contain a B30.2/SPRY domain (∼200 amino acid residues) in the C-terminal region of each subunit, as reported for the toxins from two species of lionfish and two species of stonefish. With respect to the amino acid sequence similarity, the scorpaeniform fish toxins are divided into the following two groups: toxins from three species of lionfish and those from devil stinger, two species of stonefish and waspfish. The phylogenetic tree generated also clearly supports the classification of the toxins. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Cry1Ab toxin production of MON 810 transgenic maize.

    PubMed

    Székács, András; Lauber, Eva; Juracsek, Judit; Darvas, Béla

    2010-01-01

    Levels of Cry1Ab toxin were detected in genetically modified maize of genetic event MON 810 against near isogenic maize as negative control by two commercial immunoassays. The immunoassays were characterized for their cross-reactivity (CR) between Cry1Ab protoxin and activated toxin, and were compared with each other for toxin detection in a reference plant sample. Cry1Ab toxin levels, corrected for active toxin content using the CR values obtained, were monitored in maize DK-440 BTY through the entire vegetation period. The toxin concentration was found to show a rapid rise in the leaves to 17.15 +/- 1.66 microg/g by the end of the fifth week of cultivation, followed by a gradual decline to 9.61 +/- 2.07 microg/g by the 16th week and a slight increase again to 13.51 +/- 1.96 microg/g during the last 2 weeks due to partial desiccation. Similar but lesser fluctuation of toxin levels was seen in the roots between 5.32 +/- 0.49 microg/g at the less differentiated V1 stage and 2.25 +/- 0.30 microg/g during plant development. In contrast, Cry1Ab toxin levels appeared to be stably 1.36 +/- 0.45, 4.98 +/- 0.31, 0.47 +/- 0.03, and 0.83 +/- 0.15 microg/g in the stem, anther wall, pollen, and grain, respectively. Toxin concentrations produced at the VT-R4 phenological stages under actual cultivation conditions were compared with each other in three different years within an 8-year period.

  16. Tetanus toxin is labeled with photoactivatable phospholipids at low pH

    SciTech Connect

    Montecucco, C.; Schiavo, G.; Brunner, J.

    1986-02-25

    The mechanism of cell penetration by tetanus toxin is unknown; it has been suggested that the toxin may penetrate into the lipid bilayer from a low-pH vesicular compartment. In this work, the interaction of tetanus toxin with liposomal model membranes has been studied by following its photoinduced cross-linking with either a nitrene or a carbene photolytically generated from corresponding light-sensitive phosphatidylcholine analogues. The toxin was labeled only at pHs lower than 5.5. The low pH acquired hydrophobicity of tetanus toxin appears to be confined to its light chain and to the 45-kDa NH2-terminal fragment of the heavy chain. Negatively chargedmore » lipids promote the interaction of this toxin with the hydrocarbon chain of phospholipids. The relevance of the present findings to the possible mechanism of nerve cell penetration by tetanus toxin is discussed.« less

  17. Cholix Toxin, a Novel ADP-ribosylating Factor from Vibrio cholerae

    SciTech Connect

    Jorgensen, Rene; Purdy, Alexandra E.; Fieldhouse, Robert J.

    2008-07-15

    The ADP-ribosyltransferases are a class of enzymes that display activity in a variety of bacterial pathogens responsible for causing diseases in plants and animals, including those affecting mankind, such as diphtheria, cholera, and whooping cough. We report the characterization of a novel toxin from Vibrio cholerae, which we call cholix toxin. The toxin is active against mammalian cells (IC50 = 4.6 {+-} 0.4 ng/ml) and crustaceans (Artemia nauplii LD50 = 10 {+-} 2 {mu}g/ml). Here we show that this toxin is the third member of the diphthamide-specific class of ADP-ribose transferases and that it possesses specific ADP-ribose transferase activity againstmore » ribosomal eukaryotic elongation factor 2. We also describe the high resolution crystal structures of the multidomain toxin and its catalytic domain at 2.1- and 1.25-{angstrom} resolution, respectively. The new structural data show that cholix toxin possesses the necessary molecular features required for infection of eukaryotes by receptor-mediated endocytosis, translocation to the host cytoplasm, and inhibition of protein synthesis by specific modification of elongation factor 2. The crystal structures also provide important insight into the structural basis for activation of toxin ADP-ribosyltransferase activity. These results indicate that cholix toxin may be an important virulence factor of Vibrio cholerae that likely plays a significant role in the survival of the organism in an aquatic environment.« less

  18. Continuous evolution of B. thuringiensis toxins overcomes insect resistance

    PubMed Central

    Badran, Ahmed H.; Guzov, Victor M.; Huai, Qing; Kemp, Melissa M.; Vishwanath, Prashanth; Kain, Wendy; Nance, Autumn M.; Evdokimov, Artem; Moshiri, Farhad; Turner, Keith H.; Wang, Ping; Malvar, Thomas; Liu, David R.

    2016-01-01

    The Bacillus thuringiensis δ-endotoxins (Bt toxins) are widely used insecticidal proteins in engineered crops that provide agricultural, economic, and environmental benefits. The development of insect resistance to Bt toxins endangers their long-term effectiveness. We developed a phage-assisted continuous evolution (PACE) selection that rapidly evolves high-affinity protein-protein interactions, and applied this system to evolve variants of the Bt toxin Cry1Ac that bind a cadherin-like receptor from the insect pest Trichoplusia ni (TnCAD) that is not natively targeted by wild-type Cry1Ac. The resulting evolved Cry1Ac variants bind TnCAD with high affinity (Kd = 11–41 nM), kill TnCAD-expressing insect cells that are not susceptible to wild-type Cry1Ac, and kill Cry1Ac-resistant T. ni insects up to 335-fold more potently than wild-type Cry1Ac. Our findings establish that the evolution of Bt toxins with novel insect cell receptor affinity can overcome Bt toxin resistance in insects and confer lethality approaching that of the wild-type Bt toxin against non-resistant insects. PMID:27120167

  19. Comparisons of Native Shiga Toxins (Stxs) Type 1 and 2 with Chimeric Toxins Indicate that the Source of the Binding Subunit Dictates Degree of Toxicity

    PubMed Central

    Russo, Lisa M.; Melton-Celsa, Angela R.; Smith, Michael J.; O'Brien, Alison D.

    2014-01-01

    Shiga toxin (Stx)-producing E. coli (STEC) cause food-borne outbreaks of hemorrhagic colitis. The main virulence factor expressed by STEC, Stx, is an AB5 toxin that has two antigenically distinct forms, Stx1a and Stx2a. Although Stx1a and Stx2a bind to the same receptor, globotriaosylceramide (Gb3), Stx2a is more potent than Stx1a in mice, whereas Stx1a is more cytotoxic than Stx2a in cell culture. In this study, we used chimeric toxins to ask what the relative contribution of individual Stx subunits is to the differential toxicity of Stx1a and Stx2a in vitro and in vivo. Chimeric stx1/stx2 operons were generated by PCR such that the coding regions for the A2 and B subunits of one toxin were combined with the coding region for the A1 subunit of the heterologous toxin. The toxicities of purified Stx1a, Stx2a, and the chimeric Stxs were determined on Vero and HCT-8 cell lines, while polarized HCT-8 cell monolayers grown on permeable supports were used to follow toxin translocation. In all in vitro assays, the activity of the chimeric toxin correlated with that of the parental toxin from which the B subunit originated. The origin of the native B subunit also dictated the 50% lethal dose of toxin after intraperitoneal intoxication of mice; however, the chimeric Stxs exhibited reduced oral toxicity and pH stability compared to Stx1a and Stx2a. Taken together, these data support the hypothesis that the differential toxicity of the chimeric toxins for cells and mice is determined by the origin of the B subunit. PMID:24671194

  20. Binary toxin and its clinical importance in Clostridium difficile infection, Belgium.

    PubMed

    Pilate, T; Verhaegen, J; Van Ranst, M; Saegeman, V

    2016-11-01

    Binary toxin-producing Clostridium difficile strains such as ribotypes 027 and 078 have been associated with increased Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) severity. Our objective was to investigate the association between presence of the binary toxin gene and CDI severity and recurrence. We performed a laboratory-based retrospective study including patients between January 2013 and March 2015 whose fecal samples were analyzed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the presence of the genes for toxin B and binary toxin and a deletion in the tcdC gene, specific for ribotype 027. Clinical and epidemiological characteristics were compared between 33 binary toxin-positive CDI patients and 33 binary toxin-negative CDI patients. Subsequently, the characteristics of 66 CDI patients were compared to those of 66 diarrhea patients who were carriers of non-toxigenic C. difficile strains. Fifty-nine of 1034 (5.7 %) fecal samples analyzed by PCR were binary toxin-positive, belonging to 33 different patients. No samples were positive for ribotype 027. Binary toxin-positive CDI patients did not differ from binary toxin-negative CDI patients in terms of disease recurrence, morbidity, or mortality, except for a higher peripheral leukocytosis in the binary toxin-positive group (16.30 × 10 9 /L vs. 11.65 × 10 9 /L; p = 0.02). The second part of our study showed that CDI patients had more severe disease, but not a higher 30-day mortality rate than diarrhea patients with a non-toxicogenic C. difficile strain. In our setting with a low prevalence of ribotype 027, the presence of the binary toxin gene is not associated with poor outcome.

  1. Botulinum toxin type A versus botulinum toxin type B for cervical dystonia.

    PubMed

    Duarte, Gonçalo S; Castelão, Mafalda; Rodrigues, Filipe B; Marques, Raquel E; Ferreira, Joaquim; Sampaio, Cristina; Moore, Austen P; Costa, João

    2016-10-26

    This is an update of a Cochrane review first published in 2003. Cervical dystonia is the most common form of focal dystonia and is a disabling disorder characterised by painful involuntary head posturing. There are two available formulations of botulinum toxin, with botulinum toxin type A (BtA) usually considered the first line therapy for this condition. Botulinum toxin type B (BtB) is an alternative option, with no compelling theoretical reason why it might not be as- or even more effective - than BtA. To compare the efficacy, safety and tolerability of botulinum toxin type A (BtA) versus botulinum toxin type B (BtB) in people with cervical dystonia. To identify studies for this review we searched the Cochrane Movement Disorders Group Trials Register, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL), MEDLINE, Embase, reference lists of articles and conference proceedings. All elements of the search, with no language restrictions, were last run in October 2016. Double-blind, parallel, randomised, placebo-controlled trials (RCTs) comparing BtA versus BtB in adults with cervical dystonia. Two independent authors assessed records, selected included studies, extracted data using a paper pro forma, and evaluated the risk of bias. We resolved disagreements by consensus or by consulting a third author. We performed meta-analyses using the random-effects model, for the comparison BtA versus BtB to estimate pooled effects and corresponding 95% confidence intervals (95% CI). No prespecified subgroup analyses were carried out. The primary efficacy outcome was improvement on any validated symptomatic rating scale, and the primary safety outcome was the proportion of participants with adverse events. We included three RCTs, all new to this update, of very low to low methodological quality, with a total of 270 participants.Two studies exclusively enrolled participants with a known positive response to BtA treatment. This raises concerns of population enrichment

  2. [Botulism: structure and function of botulinum toxin and its clinical application].

    PubMed

    Oguma, Keiji; Yamamoto, Yumiko; Suzuki, Tomonori; Fatmawati, Ni Nengah Dwi; Fujita, Kumiko

    2012-08-01

    Clostridium botulinum produces seven immunological distinct poisonous neurotoxins, A to G, with molecular masses of approximately 150kDa. In acidic foods and culture fluid, the neurotoxins associate with non-toxic components, and form large complexes designated progenitor toxins. The progenitor toxins are found in three forms named LL, L, and M. These neurotoxins and progenitor toxins were purified, and whole nucleotide sequences of their structure genes were determined. In this manuscript, the structure and function of these toxins, and the application of these toxins to clinical usage have been described.

  3. Botulinum toxin in the treatment of vocal fold nodules.

    PubMed

    Allen, Jacqui E; Belafsky, Peter C

    2009-12-01

    Promising new techniques in the management of vocal fold nodules have been developed in the past 2 years. Simultaneously, the therapeutic use of botulinum toxin has rapidly expanded. This review explores the use of botulinum toxin in treatment of vocal nodules and summarizes current therapeutic concepts. New microsurgical instruments and techniques, refinements in laser technology, radiosurgical excision and steroid intralesional injections are all promising new techniques in the management of vocal nodules. Botulinum toxin-induced 'voice rest' is a new technique we have employed in patients with recalcitrant nodules. Successful resolution of nodules is possible with this technique, without the risk of vocal fold scarring inherent in dissection/excision techniques. Botulinum toxin usage is exponentially increasing, and large-scale, long-term studies demonstrate its safety profile. Targeted vocal fold temporary paralysis induced by botulinum toxin injection is a new, well tolerated and efficacious treatment in patients with persistent vocal fold nodules.

  4. Discovery of a widely distributed toxin biosynthetic gene cluster

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Shaun W.; Mitchell, Douglas A.; Markley, Andrew L.; Hensler, Mary E.; Gonzalez, David; Wohlrab, Aaron; Dorrestein, Pieter C.; Nizet, Victor; Dixon, Jack E.

    2008-01-01

    Bacteriocins represent a large family of ribosomally produced peptide antibiotics. Here we describe the discovery of a widely conserved biosynthetic gene cluster for the synthesis of thiazole and oxazole heterocycles on ribosomally produced peptides. These clusters encode a toxin precursor and all necessary proteins for toxin maturation and export. Using the toxin precursor peptide and heterocycle-forming synthetase proteins from the human pathogen Streptococcus pyogenes, we demonstrate the in vitro reconstitution of streptolysin S activity. We provide evidence that the synthetase enzymes, as predicted from our bioinformatics analysis, introduce heterocycles onto precursor peptides, thereby providing molecular insight into the chemical structure of streptolysin S. Furthermore, our studies reveal that the synthetase exhibits relaxed substrate specificity and modifies toxin precursors from both related and distant species. Given our findings, it is likely that the discovery of similar peptidic toxins will rapidly expand to existing and emerging genomes. PMID:18375757

  5. A Bispecific Antibody Promotes Aggregation of Ricin Toxin on Cell Surfaces and Alters Dynamics of Toxin Internalization and Trafficking.

    PubMed

    Herrera, Cristina; Klokk, Tove Irene; Cole, Richard; Sandvig, Kirsten; Mantis, Nicholas J

    2016-01-01

    JJX12 is an engineered bispecific antibody against ricin, a member of the medically important A-B family of toxins that exploits retrograde transport as means to gain entry into the cytosol of target cells. JJX12 consists of RTA-D10, a camelid single variable domain (VHH) antibody directed against an epitope on ricin's enzymatic subunit (RTA), linked via a 15-mer peptide to RTB-B7, a VHH against ricin's bivalent galactose binding subunit (RTB). We previously reported that JJX12, but not an equimolar mixture of RTA-D10 and RTB-B7 monomers, was able to passively protect mice against a lethal dose ricin challenge, demonstrating that physically linking RTB-B7 and RTA-D10 is critical for toxin-neutralizing activity in vivo. We also reported that JJX12 promotes aggregation of ricin in solution, presumably through the formation of intermolecular crosslinking. In the current study, we now present evidence that JJX12 affects the dynamics of ricin uptake and trafficking in human epithelial cells. Confocal microscopy, as well as live cell imaging coupled with endocytosis pathway-specific inhibitors, revealed that JJX12-toxin complexes are formed on the surfaces of mammalian cells and internalized via a pathway sensitive to amiloride, a known inhibitor of macropinocytosis. Moreover, in the presence of JJX12, retrograde transport of ricin to the trans-Golgi network was significantly reduced, while accumulation of the toxin in late endosomes was significantly enhanced. In summary, we propose that JJX12, by virtue of its ability to crosslink ricin toxin, alters the route of toxin uptake and trafficking within cells.

  6. A Bispecific Antibody Promotes Aggregation of Ricin Toxin on Cell Surfaces and Alters Dynamics of Toxin Internalization and Trafficking

    PubMed Central

    Herrera, Cristina; Klokk, Tove Irene; Cole, Richard; Sandvig, Kirsten

    2016-01-01

    JJX12 is an engineered bispecific antibody against ricin, a member of the medically important A-B family of toxins that exploits retrograde transport as means to gain entry into the cytosol of target cells. JJX12 consists of RTA-D10, a camelid single variable domain (VHH) antibody directed against an epitope on ricin’s enzymatic subunit (RTA), linked via a 15-mer peptide to RTB-B7, a VHH against ricin’s bivalent galactose binding subunit (RTB). We previously reported that JJX12, but not an equimolar mixture of RTA-D10 and RTB-B7 monomers, was able to passively protect mice against a lethal dose ricin challenge, demonstrating that physically linking RTB-B7 and RTA-D10 is critical for toxin-neutralizing activity in vivo. We also reported that JJX12 promotes aggregation of ricin in solution, presumably through the formation of intermolecular crosslinking. In the current study, we now present evidence that JJX12 affects the dynamics of ricin uptake and trafficking in human epithelial cells. Confocal microscopy, as well as live cell imaging coupled with endocytosis pathway-specific inhibitors, revealed that JJX12-toxin complexes are formed on the surfaces of mammalian cells and internalized via a pathway sensitive to amiloride, a known inhibitor of macropinocytosis. Moreover, in the presence of JJX12, retrograde transport of ricin to the trans-Golgi network was significantly reduced, while accumulation of the toxin in late endosomes was significantly enhanced. In summary, we propose that JJX12, by virtue of its ability to crosslink ricin toxin, alters the route of toxin uptake and trafficking within cells. PMID:27300140

  7. Synthesis of protein in intestinal cells exposed to cholera toxin

    SciTech Connect

    Peterson, J.W.; Berg, W.D. Jr.; Coppenhaver, D.H.

    1987-11-01

    The mechanism by which cyclic adenosine monophosphate (AMP), formed by intestinal epithelial cells in response to cholera toxin, ultimately results in alterations in water and electrolyte transport is poorly understood. Several studies have indicated that inhibitors of transcription or translation block much of the transport of ions and water in the intestine and edema formation in tissue elicited by cholera toxin. Data presented in this study confirmed the inhibitory effects of cycloheximide on cholera toxin-induced fluid accumulation in the rabbit intestinal loop model. Neither cycloheximide nor actinomycin D altered the amount of cyclic AMP that accumulated in intestinal cells andmore » Chinese hamster ovary cells exposed to cholera toxin. An increase in (/sup 3/H) leucine incorporation was readily demonstrable in intestinal epithelial cells from rabbits challenged with Vibrio cholerae. Similarly, intestinal epithelial cells incubated with cholera toxin for 4 hr synthesized substantially more protein than controls as determined by relative incorporation of (/sup 35/S) methionine. Most of the new protein synthesized in response to cholera toxin was membrane associated and of high molecular weight. The possible significance of the toxin-induced protein relative to cholera pathogenesis was discussed.« less

  8. Evidence of paralytic shellfish poisoning toxin in milkfish in South Taiwan.

    PubMed

    Chou, H-N; Chung, Y-C; Cho, W-C; Chen, C-Y

    2003-06-01

    Natural phytoplankton blooms of the dinoflagellate Alexandrium minutum, milkfish (Chanos chanos) exposed to natural blooms, sediment and mangrove crab (Scylla serrata) were analysed for paralytic shellfish poisoning toxins by high-performance liquid chromatography. The toxin profiles of milkfish and mangrove crab were similar to that of A. minutum collected from blooming fishponds. In a laboratory A. minutum-blooming environment, the stomach and intestine of milkfish accumulated paralytic shellfish poisoning toxins during the exposure period. The non-visceral tissues were non-toxic. However, milkfish lost their entire body burden of toxin on the first day of transferring to a toxic algae-free environment. The result shows that milkfish concentrate paralytic shellfish poisoning toxins in digestive organs and did not retain toxins.

  9. Diphtheria toxin-induced channels in Vero cells selective for monovalent cations

    SciTech Connect

    Sandvig, K.; Olsnes, S.

    1988-09-05

    Ion fluxes associated with translocation of diphtheria toxin across the surface membrane of Vero cells were studied. When cells with surface-bound toxin were exposed to low pH to induce toxin entry, the cells became permeable to Na+, K+, H+, choline+, and glucosamine+. There was no increased permeability to Cl-, SO4(-2), glucose, or sucrose, whereas the uptake of /sup 45/Ca2+ was slightly increased. The influx of Ca2+, which appears to be different from that of monovalent cations, was reduced by several inhibitors of anion transport and by verapamil, Mn2+, Co2+, and Ca2+, but not by Mg2+. The toxin-induced fluxes of N+,more » K+, and protons were inhibited by Cd2+. Cd2+ also protected the cells against intoxication by diphtheria toxin, suggesting that the open cation-selective channel is required for toxin translocation. The involvement of the toxin receptor is discussed.« less

  10. Fate of Fusarium Toxins during Brewing.

    PubMed

    Habler, Katharina; Geissinger, Cajetan; Hofer, Katharina; Schüler, Jan; Moghari, Sarah; Hess, Michael; Gastl, Martina; Rychlik, Michael

    2017-01-11

    Some information is available about the fate of Fusarium toxins during the brewing process, but only little is known about the single processing steps in detail. In our study we produced beer from two different barley cultivars inoculated with three different Fusarium species, namely, Fusarium culmorum, Fusarium sporotrichioides, and Fusarium avenaceum, producing a wide range of mycotoxins such as type B trichothecenes, type A trichothecenes, and enniatins. By the use of multi-mycotoxin LC-MS/MS stable isotope dilution methods we were able to follow the fate of Fusarium toxins during the entire brewing process. In particular, the type B trichothecenes deoxynivalenol, 3-acetyldeoxynivalenol, and 15-acetyldeoxynivalenol showed similar behaviors. Between 35 and 52% of those toxins remained in the beer after filtration. The contents of the potentially hazardous deoxynivalenol-3-glucoside and the type A trichothecenes increased during mashing, but a rapid decrease of deoxynivalenol-3-glucoside content was found during the following steps of lautering and wort boiling. The concentration of enniatins greatly decreased with the discarding of spent grains or finally with the hot break. The results of our study show the retention of diverse Fusarium toxins during the brewing process and allow for assessing the food safety of beer regarding the monitored Fusarium mycotoxins.

  11. Type II toxin: antitoxin systems. More than small selfish entities?

    PubMed

    Rocker, Andrea; Meinhart, Anton

    2016-05-01

    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) modules regulate metabolism and viability of bacteria and archaea. In type II TA systems these functions are generally thought to be performed by two small proteins. However, evidence is increasing that the toxins are much more diverse and can form multi-domain proteins. Recently, we published a novel type II TA system in which toxin and antitoxin are covalently linked into a single polypeptide chain. In this review we summarize the current knowledge on these elongated toxin homologs and provide perspectives for future study.

  12. Evolution of Bacillus thuringiensis Cry toxins insecticidal activity.

    PubMed

    Bravo, Alejandra; Gómez, Isabel; Porta, Helena; García-Gómez, Blanca Ines; Rodriguez-Almazan, Claudia; Pardo, Liliana; Soberón, Mario

    2013-01-01

    Insecticidal Cry proteins produced by Bacillus thuringiensis are use worldwide in transgenic crops for efficient pest control. Among the family of Cry toxins, the three domain Cry family is the better characterized regarding their natural evolution leading to a large number of Cry proteins with similar structure, mode of action but different insect specificity. Also, this group is the better characterized regarding the study of their mode of action and the molecular basis of insect specificity. In this review we discuss how Cry toxins have evolved insect specificity in nature and analyse several cases of improvement of Cry toxin action by genetic engineering, some of these examples are currently used in transgenic crops. We believe that the success in the improvement of insecticidal activity by genetic evolution of Cry toxins will depend on the knowledge of the rate-limiting steps of Cry toxicity in different insect pests, the mapping of the specificity binding regions in the Cry toxins, as well as the improvement of mutagenesis strategies and selection procedures. © 2012 The Authors. Microbial Biotechnology © 2012 Society for Applied Microbiology and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  13. Modelling toxin effects on protein biosynthesis in eukaryotic cells.

    PubMed

    Skakauskas, Vladas; Katauskis, Pranas

    2017-08-01

    We present a rather generic model for toxin (ricin) inhibition of protein biosynthesis in eukaryotic cells. We also study reduction of the ricin toxic effects with application of antibodies against the RTB subunit of ricin molecules. Both species initially are delivered extracellularly. The model accounts for the pinocytotic and receptor-mediated toxin endocytosis and the intact toxin exocytotic removal out of the cell. The model also includes the lysosomal toxin destruction, the intact toxin motion to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) for separation of its molecules into the RTA and RTB subunits, and the RTA chain translocation into the cytosol. In the cytosol, one portion of the RTA undergoes degradation via the ERAD. The other its portion can inactivate ribosomes at a large rate. The model is based on a system of deterministic ODEs. The influence of the kinetic parameters on the protein concentration and antibody protection factor is studied in detail. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. The Role of Typhoid Toxin in Salmonella Typhi Virulence


    PubMed Central

    Chong, Alexander; Lee, Sohyoung; Yang, Yi-An; Song, Jeongmin

    2017-01-01

    Unlike many of the nontyphoidal Salmonella serovars such as S. Typhimurium that cause restricted gastroenteritis, Salmonella Typhi is unique in that it causes life-threatening typhoid fever in humans. Despite the vast difference in disease outcomes that S. Typhi and S. Typhimurium cause in humans, there are few genomic regions that are unique to S. Typhi. Of these regions, the most notable is the small locus encoding typhoid toxin, an AB toxin that has several distinct characteristics that contribute to S. Typhi’s pathogenicity. As a result, typhoid toxin and its role in S. Typhi virulence have been studied in an effort to gain insight into potential treatment and prevention strategies. Given the rise of multidrug-resistant strains, research in this area has become increasingly important. This article discusses the current understanding of typhoid toxin and potential directions for future research endeavors in order to better understand the contribution of typhoid toxin to S. Typhi virulence. PMID:28656014

  15. Treatment of Gastrointestinal Sphincters Spasms with Botulinum Toxin A

    PubMed Central

    Brisinda, Giuseppe; Sivestrini, Nicola; Bianco, Giuseppe; Maria, Giorgio

    2015-01-01

    Botulinum toxin A inhibits neuromuscular transmission. It has become a drug with many indications. The range of clinical applications has grown to encompass several neurological and non-neurological conditions. One of the most recent achievements in the field is the observation that botulinum toxin A provides benefit in diseases of the gastrointestinal tract. Although toxin blocks cholinergic nerve endings in the autonomic nervous system, it has also been shown that it does not block non-adrenergic non-cholinergic responses mediated by nitric oxide. This has promoted further interest in using botulinum toxin A as a treatment for overactive smooth muscles and sphincters. The introduction of this therapy has made the treatment of several clinical conditions easier, in the outpatient setting, at a lower cost and without permanent complications. This review presents current data on the use of botulinum toxin A in the treatment of pathological conditions of the gastrointestinal tract. PMID:26035487

  16. Biosecurity reference : CFR-listed agent and toxin summaries.

    SciTech Connect

    Barnett, Natalie Beth

    This reference document provides summary information on the animal, plant, zoonotic, and human pathogens and toxins regulated and categorized by 9 CFR 331 and 7 CFR 121, 'Agricultural Bioterrorism Protection Act of 2002; Possession, Use and Transfer of Biological Agents and Toxins,' and 42 CFR 73, 'Possession, Use, and Transfer of Select Agents and Toxins.' Summary information includes, at a minimum, a description of the agent and its associated symptoms; often additional information is provided on the diagnosis, treatment, geographic distribution, transmission, control and eradication, and impacts on public health.

  17. The resurgence of botulinum toxin injection for strabismus in children.

    PubMed

    Mahan, Marielle; Engel, J Mark

    2017-09-01

    The present review discusses recent advances in the use of botulinum toxin for the management of strabismus in children. Botulinum toxin injection produces similar results compared to surgery for certain subtypes of strabismus, especially acute onset esotropia. It may be more effective in many subtypes of esotropia where surgery has been less reliable, including partially accommodative esotropia, esotropia associated with cerebral palsy, and thyroid eye disease. Small retrospective studies have demonstrated the efficacy of botulinum toxin in the treatment of many types of pediatric strabismus, providing some guidance for clinicians to determine which patients would benefit most from this intervention. Although administration of botulinum toxin is generally accepted as a reasonable option in select cases, many strabismus surgeons have not fully embraced the treatment, in part because of perceived disadvantages compared to surgery and difficulty in identifying subsets with the highest potential for therapeutic success. A recent study compared the administration of botulinum toxin in children with acute-onset esotropia to surgical correction and found botulinum toxin had a statistically equal success rate, but with the advantage of significantly less time under general anesthesia. In addition, botulinum toxin has been recently tried in patients with partially accommodative esotropia, esotropia associated with cerebral palsy, cyclic esotropia, and in patients with thyroid eye disease. The present review will discuss current clinical recommendations based on recent studies on the use of botulinum toxin in children with strabismus.

  18. [Toxins of Clostridium perfringens as a natural and bioterroristic threats].

    PubMed

    Omernik, Andrzej; Płusa, Tadeusz

    2015-09-01

    Clostridium perfringens is absolutely anaerobic rod-shaped, sporeforming bacterium. The morbidity is connected with producing toxins. Depending on the type of toxin produced Clostridium perfringens can be divided into five serotypes:A-E. Under natural conditions, this bacterium is responsible for local outbreaks of food poisoning associated with eating contaminated food which which was improperly heat treated. Some countries with lower economic level are endemic foci of necrotizing enteritis caused by Clostridium perfringens. The bacterium is also a major cause of gas gangrene. It is a disease, associated with wound infection, with potentially fatal prognosis in the case of treatment's delays. In the absence of early radical surgery, antibiotic therapy and (if available) hyperbaric treatment leads to the spread of toxins in the body causing shock, coma and death. Due to the force of produced toxins is a pathogen that poses a substrate for the production of biological weapons. It could potentially be used to induce outbreaks of food poisoning and by missiles contamination by spore lead to increased morbidity of gas gangrene in injured soldiers. C. perfringens types B and D produce epsilon toxin considered to be the third most powerful bacterial toxin. Because of the ability to disperse the toxin as an aerosol and a lack of methods of treatment and prevention of poisoning possible factors it is a potential tool for bioterrorism It is advisable to continue research into vaccines and treatments for poisoning toxins of C. perfringens. © 2015 MEDPRESS.

  19. A new immunoassay for detecting all subtypes of Shiga toxins produced by Shiga toxin-producing E. coli in ground beef

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Background Shiga toxin (Stx) is a common virulence factor of all Shiga toxin producing E. coli (STEC) that cause a wide spectrum of disease, including hemorrhagic colitis and hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). Although several commercial kits are available for detection of Stx produced by STEC, none o...

  20. Potentiometric chemical sensors for the detection of paralytic shellfish toxins.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, Nádia S; Cruz, Marco G N; Gomes, Maria Teresa S R; Rudnitskaya, Alisa

    2018-05-01

    Potentiometric chemical sensors for the detection of paralytic shellfish toxins have been developed. Four toxins typically encountered in Portuguese waters, namely saxitoxin, decarbamoyl saxitoxin, gonyautoxin GTX5 and C1&C2, were selected for the study. A series of miniaturized sensors with solid inner contact and plasticized polyvinylchloride membranes containing ionophores, nine compositions in total, were prepared and their characteristics evaluated. Sensors displayed cross-sensitivity to four studied toxins, i.e. response to several toxins together with low selectivity. High selectivity towards paralytic shellfish toxins was observed in the presence of inorganic cations with selectivity coefficients ranging from 0.04 to 0.001 for Na + and K + and 3.6*10 -4 to 3.4*10 -5 for Ca 2+ . Detection limits were in the range from 0.25 to 0.9 μmolL -1 for saxitoxin and decarbamoyl saxitoxin, and from 0.08 to 1.8 μmolL -1 for GTX5 and C1&C2, which allows toxin detection at the concentration levels corresponding to the legal limits. Characteristics of the developed sensors allow their use in the electronic tongue multisensor system for simultaneous quantification of paralytic shellfish toxins. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Intradetrusor injections of onabotulinum toxin A (Botox®) 300 U or 200 U versus abobotulinum toxin A (Dysport®) 750 U in the management of neurogenic detrusor overactivity: A case control study.

    PubMed

    Peyronnet, Benoit; Castel-Lacanal, Evelyne; Roumiguie, Mathieu; Even, Lucie; Marque, Philippe; Soulié, Michel; Rischmann, Pascal; Game, Xavier

    2017-03-01

    To compare the outcomes of the first intradetrusor injections of abobotulinum toxin 750 U and onabotulinum toxin 200 and 300 U in patients with neurogenic detrusor overactivity (NDO). A retrospective case-control study was conducted including 211 NDO patients treated in three consecutives eras with onabotulinum toxin 300 U (2004-2006; 80 patients), abobotulinum toxin 750 U (2007-2011; 78 patients) or onabotulinum toxin 200 U (2011-2014; 53 patients). Urodynamic and clinical parameters were compared between groups. The primary endpoint was the rates of success defined as the combination of urgency, urinary incontinence, and detrusor overactivity resolution. When comparing abobotulinum toxin to onabotulinum toxin any doses (200 or 300 U; n = 133), success rates were similar (65.4% vs. 55.6%; P = 0.16). Patients treated with abobotulinum toxin 750 U had higher success rate (65.4% vs. 41.5%; P = 0.007) compared to those who received onabotulinum toxin 200 U. In contrast, there were similar success rates in abobotulinum toxin 750 U and onabotulinum toxin 300 U groups (65.4% vs. 65%; P = 0.91) but with a trend towards longer interval between the first and the second injection in the onabotulinum toxin 300 U group (12.4 vs. 9.3 months; P = 0.09). Intradetrusor injections of abobotulinum toxin 750 U for NDO provided better outcomes than injections of onabotulinum toxin 200 U. Success rates of abobotulinum toxin 750 U and onabotulinum toxin 300 U were similar but interval between injections tended to be longer with onabotulinum toxin 300 U. Neurourol. Urodynam. 36:734-739, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  2. Quantitative determination of biological activity of botulinum toxins utilizing compound muscle action potentials (CMAP), and comparison of neuromuscular transmission blockage and muscle flaccidity among toxins.

    PubMed

    Torii, Yasushi; Goto, Yoshitaka; Takahashi, Motohide; Ishida, Setsuji; Harakawa, Tetsuhiro; Sakamoto, Takashi; Kaji, Ryuji; Kozaki, Shunji; Ginnaga, Akihiro

    2010-01-01

    The biological activity of various types of botulinum toxin has been evaluated using the mouse intraperitoneal LD(50) test (ip LD(50)). This method requires a large number of mice to precisely determine toxin activity, and so has posed a problem with regard to animal welfare. We have used a direct measure of neuromuscular transmission, the compound muscle action potential (CMAP), to evaluate the effect of different types of botulinum neurotoxin (NTX), and we compared the effects of these toxins to evaluate muscle relaxation by employing the digit abduction scoring (DAS) assay. This method can be used to measure a broad range of toxin activities the day after administration. Types A, C, C/D, and E NTX reduced the CMAP amplitude one day after administration at below 1 ip LD(50), an effect that cannot be detected using the mouse ip LD(50) assay. The method is useful not only for measuring toxin activity, but also for evaluating the characteristics of different types of NTX. The rat CMAP test is straightforward, highly reproducible, and can directly determine the efficacy of toxin preparations through their inhibition of neuromuscular transmission. Thus, this method may be suitable for pharmacology studies and the quality control of toxin preparations. Copyright 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Binding properties of Clostridium botulinum type C progenitor toxin to mucins.

    PubMed

    Nakamura, Toshio; Takada, Noriko; Tonozuka, Takashi; Sakano, Yoshiyuki; Oguma, Keiji; Nishikawa, Atsushi

    2007-04-01

    It has been reported that Clostridium botulinum type C 16S progenitor toxin (C16S toxin) first binds to the sialic acid on the cell surface of mucin before invading cells [A. Nishikawa, N. Uotsu, H. Arimitsu, J.C. Lee, Y. Miura, Y. Fujinaga, H. Nakada, T. Watanabe, T. Ohyama, Y. Sakano, K. Oguma, The receptor and transporter for internalization of Clostridium botulinum type C progenitor toxin into HT-29 cells, Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 319 (2004) 327-333]. In this study we investigated the binding properties of the C16S toxin to glycoproteins. Although the toxin bound to membrane blotted mucin derived from the bovine submaxillary gland (BSM), which contains a lot of sialyl oligosaccharides, it did not bind to neuraminidase-treated BSM. The binding of the toxin to BSM was inhibited by N-acetylneuraminic acid, N-glycolylneuraminic acid, and sialyl oligosaccharides strongly, but was not inhibited by neutral oligosaccharides. Both sialyl alpha2-3 lactose and sialyl alpha2-6 lactose prevented binding similarly. On the other hand, the toxin also bound well to porcine gastric mucin. In this case, neutral oligosaccharides might play an important role as ligand, since galactose and lactose inhibited binding. These results suggest that the toxin is capable of recognizing a wide variety of oligosaccharide structures.

  4. Pufferfish mortality associated with novel polar marine toxins in Hawaii

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Work, Thierry M.; Moeller, Perer D. R.; Beauchesne, Kevin R.; Dagenais, Julie; Breeden, Renee; Rameyer, Robert; Walsh, Willliam A.; Abecassis, Melanie; Kobayashi, Donald R.; Conway, Carla M.; Winton, James

    2017-01-01

    Fish die-offs are important signals in tropical marine ecosystems. In 2010, a mass mortality of pufferfish in Hawaii (USA) was dominated by Arothron hispidus showing aberrant neurological behaviors. Using pathology, toxinology, and field surveys, we implicated a series of novel, polar, marine toxins as a likely cause of this mass mortality. Our findings are striking in that (1) a marine toxin was associated with a kill of a fish species that is itself toxic; (2) we provide a plausible mechanism to explain clinical signs of affected fish; and (3) this epizootic likely depleted puffer populations. Whilst our data are compelling, we did not synthesize the toxin de novo, and we were unable to categorically prove that the polar toxins caused mortality or that they were metabolites of an undefined parent compound. However, our approach does provide a template for marine fish kill investigations associated with marine toxins and inherent limitations of existing methods. Our study also highlights the need for more rapid and cost-effective tools to identify new marine toxins, particularly small, highly polar molecules.

  5. Pufferfish mortality associated with novel polar marine toxins in Hawaii.

    PubMed

    Work, Thierry M; Moeller, Peter D R; Beauchesne, Kevin R; Dagenais, Julie; Breeden, Renee; Rameyer, Robert; Walsh, William J; Abecassis, Melanie; Kobayashi, Donald R; Conway, Carla; Winton, James

    2017-03-06

    Fish die-offs are important signals in tropical marine ecosystems. In 2010, a mass mortality of pufferfish in Hawaii (USA) was dominated by Arothron hispidus showing aberrant neurological behaviors. Using pathology, toxinology, and field surveys, we implicated a series of novel, polar, marine toxins as a likely cause of this mass mortality. Our findings are striking in that (1) a marine toxin was associated with a kill of a fish species that is itself toxic; (2) we provide a plausible mechanism to explain clinical signs of affected fish; and (3) this epizootic likely depleted puffer populations. Whilst our data are compelling, we did not synthesize the toxin de novo, and we were unable to categorically prove that the polar toxins caused mortality or that they were metabolites of an undefined parent compound. However, our approach does provide a template for marine fish kill investigations associated with marine toxins and inherent limitations of existing methods. Our study also highlights the need for more rapid and cost-effective tools to identify new marine toxins, particularly small, highly polar molecules.

  6. Nanoparticle-conjugated animal venom-toxins and their possible therapeutic potential

    PubMed Central

    Biswas, Archita; Gomes, Aparna; Sengupta, Jayeeta; Datta, Poulami; Singha, Santiswarup; Dasgupta, Anjan Kr; Gomes, Antony

    2012-01-01

    Nano-medical approaches to develop drugs have attracted much attention in different arenas to design nanoparticle conjugates for better efficacy of the potential bio-molecules. A group of promising candidates of this category would be venom-toxins of animal origin of potential medicinal value. Traditional systems of medicine as well as folklores mention the use of venom-toxins for the treatment of various diseases. Research has led to scientific validation of medicinal applications of venoms-toxins and many active constituents derived from venoms-toxins are already in clinical use or under clinical trial. Nanomedicine is an emerging field of medicine where nanotechnology is used to develop molecules of nano-scale dimension, so that these molecules can be taken up by the cells more easily and have better efficacy, as compared to large molecules that may tend to get eliminated. This review will focus on some of the potential venoms and toxins along with nanoparticle conjugated venom-toxins of snakes, amphibians, scorpions and bees, etc., for possible therapeutic clues against emerging diseases. PMID:23236583

  7. Naturally acquired antibodies against Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin in goats.

    PubMed

    Veschi, Josir Laine A; Bruzzone, Octavio A; Losada-Eaton, Daniela M; Dutra, Iveraldo S; Fernandez-Miyakawa, Mariano E

    2008-09-15

    Clostridium perfringens type D-producing epsilon toxin is a common cause of death in sheep and goats worldwide. Although anti-epsilon toxin serum antibodies have been detected in healthy non-vaccinated sheep, the information regarding naturally acquired antibodies in ruminants is scanty. The objective of the present report was to characterize the development of naturally acquired antibodies against C. perfringens epsilon toxin in goats. The levels of anti-epsilon toxin antibodies in blood serum of goat kids from two different herds were examined continuously for 14 months. Goats were not vaccinated against any clostridial disease and received heterologous colostrums from cows that were not vaccinated against any clostridial disease. During the survey one of these flocks suffered an unexpectedly severe C. perfringens type D enterotoxemia outbreak. The results showed that natural acquired antibodies against C. perfringens epsilon toxin can appear as early as 6 weeks in young goats and increase with the age without evidence of clinical disease. The enterotoxemia outbreak was coincident with a significant increase in the level of anti-epsilon toxin antibodies.

  8. Fungal toxins bind to the URF13 protein in maize mitochondria and Escherichia coli.

    PubMed Central

    Braun, C J; Siedow, J N; Levings, C S

    1990-01-01

    Expression of the maize mitochondrial T-urf13 gene results in a sensitivity to a family of fungal pathotoxins and to methomyl, a structurally unrelated systemic insecticide. Similar effects of pathotoxins and methomyl are observed when T-urf13 is cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli. An interaction between these compounds and the membrane-bound URF13 protein permeabilizes the inner mitochondrial and bacterial plasma membranes. To understand the toxin-URF13 effects, we have investigated whether toxin specifically binds to the URF13 protein. Our studies indicate that toxin binds to the URF13 protein in maize mitochondria and in E. coli expressing URF13. Binding analysis in E. coli reveals cooperative toxin binding. A low level of specific toxin binding is also demonstrated in cms-T and cms-T-restored mitochondria; however, binding does not appear to be cooperative in maize mitochondria. Competition and displacement studies in E. coli demonstrate that toxin binding is reversible and that the toxins and methomyl compete for the same, or for overlapping, binding sites. Two toxin-insensitive URF13 mutants display a diminished capability to bind toxin in E. coli, which identifies residues of URF13 important in toxin binding. A third toxin-insensitive URF13 mutant shows considerable toxin binding in E. coli, demonstrating that toxin binding can occur without causing membrane permeabilization. Our results indicate that toxin-mediated membrane permeabilization only occurs when toxin or methomyl is bound to URF13. PMID:2136632

  9. Structural constraints-based evaluation of immunogenic avirulent toxins from Clostridium botulinum C2 and C3 toxins as subunit vaccines.

    PubMed

    Prisilla, A; Prathiviraj, R; Sasikala, R; Chellapandi, P

    2016-10-01

    Clostridium botulinum (group-III) is an anaerobic bacterium producing C2 and C3 toxins in addition to botulinum neurotoxins in avian and mammalian cells. C2 and C3 toxins are members of bacterial ADP-ribosyltransferase superfamily, which modify the eukaryotic cell surface proteins by ADP-ribosylation reaction. Herein, the mutant proteins with lack of catalytic and pore forming function derived from C2 (C2I and C2II) and C3 toxins were computationally evaluated to understand their structure-function integrity. We have chosen many structural constraints including local structural environment, folding process, backbone conformation, conformational dynamic sub-space, NAD-binding specificity and antigenic determinants for screening of suitable avirulent toxins. A total of 20 avirulent mutants were identified out of 23 mutants, which were experimentally produced by site-directed mutagenesis. No changes in secondary structural elements in particular to α-helices and β-sheets and also in fold rate of all-β classes. Structural stability was maintained by reordered hydrophobic and hydrogen bonding patterns. Molecular dynamic studies suggested that coupled mutations may restrain the binding affinity to NAD(+) or protein substrate upon structural destabilization. Avirulent toxins of this study have stable energetic backbone conformation with a common blue print of folding process. Molecular docking studies revealed that avirulent mutants formed more favorable hydrogen bonding with the side-chain of amino acids near to conserved NAD-binding core, despite of restraining NAD-binding specificity. Thus, structural constraints in the avirulent toxins would determine their immunogenic nature for the prioritization of protein-based subunit vaccine/immunogens to avian and veterinary animals infected with C. botulinum. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Toxin Models of Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Parkinson's Disease

    PubMed Central

    Martinez, Terina N.

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Significance: Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized, in part, by the progressive and selective loss of dopaminergic neuron cell bodies within the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) and the associated deficiency of the neurotransmitter dopamine (DA) in the striatum, which gives rise to the typical motor symptoms of PD. The mechanisms that contribute to the induction and progressive cell death of dopaminergic neurons in PD are multi-faceted and remain incompletely understood. Data from epidemiological studies in humans and molecular studies in genetic, as well as toxin-induced animal models of parkinsonism, indicate that mitochondrial dysfunction occurs early in the pathogenesis of both familial and idiopathic PD. In this review, we provide an overview of toxin models of mitochondrial dysfunction in experimental Parkinson's disease and discuss mitochondrial mechanisms of neurotoxicity. Recent Advances: A new toxin model using the mitochondrial toxin trichloroethylene was recently described and novel methods, such as intranasal exposure to toxins, have been explored. Additionally, recent research conducted in toxin models of parkinsonism provides an emerging emphasis on extranigral aspects of PD pathology. Critical Issues: Unfortunately, none of the existing animal models of experimental PD completely mimics the etiology, progression, and pathology of human PD. Future Directions: Continued efforts to optimize established animal models of parkinsonism, as well as the development and characterization of new animal models are essential, as there still remains a disconnect in terms of translating mechanistic observations in animal models of experimental PD into bona fide disease-modifying therapeutics for human PD patients. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 16, 920–934. PMID:21554057

  11. Cellular uptake of Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin: membrane translocation of a fusion toxin requires unfolding of its dihydrofolate reductase domain.

    PubMed

    Haug, Gerd; Wilde, Christian; Leemhuis, Jost; Meyer, Dieter K; Aktories, Klaus; Barth, Holger

    2003-12-30

    The Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin is the prototype of the family of binary actin-ADP-ribosylating toxins. C2 toxin is composed of two separated nonlinked proteins. The enzyme component C2I ADP-ribosylates actin in the cytosol of target cells. The binding/translocation component C2II mediates cell binding of the enzyme component and its translocation from acidic endosomes into the cytosol. After proteolytic activation, C2II forms heptameric pores in endosomal membranes, and most likely, C2I translocates through these pores into the cytosol. For this step, the cellular heat shock protein Hsp90 is essential. We analyzed the effect of methotrexate on the cellular uptake of a fusion toxin in which the enzyme dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR) was fused to the C-terminus of C2I. Here, we report that unfolding of C2I-DHFR is required for cellular uptake of the toxin via the C2IIa component. The C2I-DHFR fusion toxin catalyzed ADP-ribosylation of actin in vitro and was able to intoxicate cultured cells when applied together with C2IIa. Binding of the folate analogue methotrexate favors a stable three-dimensional structure of the dihydrofolate reductase domain. Pretreatment of C2I-DHFR with methotrexate prevented cleavage of C2I-DHFR by trypsin. In the presence of methotrexate, intoxication of cells with C2I-DHFR/C2II was inhibited. The presence of methotrexate diminished the translocation of the C2I-DHFR fusion toxin from endosomal compartments into the cytosol and the direct C2IIa-mediated translocation of C2I-DHFR across cell membranes. Methotrexate had no influence on the intoxication of cells with C2I/C2IIa and did not alter the C2IIa-mediated binding of C2I-DHFR to cells. The data indicate that methotrexate prevented unfolding of the C2I-DHFR fusion toxin, and thereby the translocation of methotrexate-bound C2I-DHFR from endosomes into the cytosol of target cells is inhibited.

  12. Xylella fastidiosa plasmid-encoded PemK toxin is an endoribonuclease.

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Stable inheritance of pXF-RIV11 in Xylella fastidiosa is conferred by the pemI/pemK plasmid addiction system. PemK serves as a toxin inhibiting bacterial growth; PemI is the corresponding antitoxin that blocks activity of PemK toxin by direct binding. PemK toxin and PemI antitoxin were over-expre...

  13. Properties of dermonecrotic toxin prepared from sonic extracts Bordetella bronchiseptica.

    PubMed

    Kume, K; Nakai, T; Samejima, Y; Sugimoto, C

    1986-05-01

    A toxin with dermonecrotic activity (DNT) was purified from sonic extracts of Bordetella bronchiseptica L3 of pig origin at phase I by chromatographic and electrophoretic methods. The purification procedure was one developed for obtaining the Pasteurella multocida DNT from sonic extracts with some modifications. Dermonecrotizing activity of B. bronchiseptica-purified DNT was increased by 600-fold compared with that of the crude extract, and the average yield was about 3%. The toxin was homogeneous, as determined by Ouchterlony double immunodiffusion, crossed immunoelectrophoresis, and disk isoelectric focusing in polyacrylamide gels. The toxin gave a single band on polyacrylamide disk gel electrophoresis (PAGE) and sodium dodecyl sulfate-SDS PAGE. The molecular weight of the toxin was ca. 190,000 +/- 5,000, as determined by SDS-PAGE. The isoelectric point of the toxin was ca. 6.5 to 6.6. The minimal necrotizing dose of the toxin for guinea pigs was about 2 ng of protein per 0.1 ml, the 50% lethal dose per mouse was about 0.3 micrograms, and the minimal cytotoxic dose for embryonic bovine lung cells was about 2 ng/ml. The toxin was heat labile and sensitive to inactivation by trypsin, Formalin, and glutaraldehyde. The mildly trypsinized B. bronchiseptica DNT preparation dissociated into two polypeptide chains, with molecular weights of ca. 75,000 +/- 4,000 (fragment 1) and ca. 118,000 +/- 5,000 (fragment 2), after treatment with dithiothreitol-SDS or urea. Upon removal of dithiothreitol and urea from the dissociated DNT preparation, the fragments reassociated, and the DNT that was formed was indistinguishable from the native toxin.

  14. Characterization of Botulinum Progenitor Toxins by Mass Spectrometry

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2005-08-01

    and proteases by NTNH to HA-33 assistance in binding to and translocating progenitor toxin(s) through alimentary epithelial barriers (11, 12, 24...performed using peak list files generated by MassLynx (v3.5) and the following parameters: the National Center for Biotechnology Information

  15. Intragenome Diversity of Gene Families Encoding Toxin-like Proteins in Venomous Animals.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez de la Vega, Ricardo C; Giraud, Tatiana

    2016-11-01

    The evolution of venoms is the story of how toxins arise and of the processes that generate and maintain their diversity. For animal venoms these processes include recruitment for expression in the venom gland, neofunctionalization, paralogous expansions, and functional divergence. The systematic study of these processes requires the reliable identification of the venom components involved in antagonistic interactions. High-throughput sequencing has the potential of uncovering the entire set of toxins in a given organism, yet the existence of non-venom toxin paralogs and the misleading effects of partial census of the molecular diversity of toxins make necessary to collect complementary evidence to distinguish true toxins from their non-venom paralogs. Here, we analyzed the whole genomes of two scorpions, one spider and one snake, aiming at the identification of the full repertoires of genes encoding toxin-like proteins. We classified the entire set of protein-coding genes into paralogous groups and monotypic genes, identified genes encoding toxin-like proteins based on known toxin families, and quantified their expression in both venom-glands and pooled tissues. Our results confirm that genes encoding toxin-like proteins are part of multigene families, and that these families arise by recruitment events from non-toxin genes followed by limited expansions of the toxin-like protein coding genes. We also show that failing to account for sequence similarity with non-toxin proteins has a considerable misleading effect that can be greatly reduced by comparative transcriptomics. Our study overall contributes to the understanding of the evolutionary dynamics of proteins involved in antagonistic interactions. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. All rights reserved. For permissions please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  16. Diversity and impact of prokaryotic toxins on aquatic environments: a review.

    PubMed

    Valério, Elisabete; Chaves, Sandra; Tenreiro, Rogério

    2010-10-01

    Microorganisms are ubiquitous in all habitats and are recognized by their metabolic versatility and ability to produce many bioactive compounds, including toxins. Some of the most common toxins present in water are produced by several cyanobacterial species. As a result, their blooms create major threats to animal and human health, tourism, recreation and aquaculture. Quite a few cyanobacterial toxins have been described, including hepatotoxins, neurotoxins, cytotoxins and dermatotoxins. These toxins are secondary metabolites, presenting a vast diversity of structures and variants. Most of cyanobacterial secondary metabolites are peptides or have peptidic substructures and are assumed to be synthesized by non-ribosomal peptide synthesis (NRPS), involving peptide synthetases, or NRPS/PKS, involving peptide synthetases and polyketide synthases hybrid pathways. Besides cyanobacteria, other bacteria associated with aquatic environments are recognized as significant toxin producers, representing important issues in food safety, public health, and human and animal well being. Vibrio species are one of the most representative groups of aquatic toxin producers, commonly associated with seafood-born infections. Some enterotoxins and hemolysins have been identified as fundamental for V. cholerae and V. vulnificus pathogenesis, but there is evidence for the existence of other potential toxins. Campylobacter spp. and Escherichia coli are also water contaminants and are able to produce important toxins after infecting their hosts. Other bacteria associated with aquatic environments are emerging as toxin producers, namely Legionella pneumophila and Aeromonas hydrophila, described as responsible for the synthesis of several exotoxins, enterotoxins and cytotoxins. Furthermore, several Clostridium species can produce potent neurotoxins. Although not considered aquatic microorganisms, they are ubiquitous in the environment and can easily contaminate drinking and irrigation water

  17. Diversity and Impact of Prokaryotic Toxins on Aquatic Environments: A Review

    PubMed Central

    Valério, Elisabete; Chaves, Sandra; Tenreiro, Rogério

    2010-01-01

    Microorganisms are ubiquitous in all habitats and are recognized by their metabolic versatility and ability to produce many bioactive compounds, including toxins. Some of the most common toxins present in water are produced by several cyanobacterial species. As a result, their blooms create major threats to animal and human health, tourism, recreation and aquaculture. Quite a few cyanobacterial toxins have been described, including hepatotoxins, neurotoxins, cytotoxins and dermatotoxins. These toxins are secondary metabolites, presenting a vast diversity of structures and variants. Most of cyanobacterial secondary metabolites are peptides or have peptidic substructures and are assumed to be synthesized by non-ribosomal peptide synthesis (NRPS), involving peptide synthetases, or NRPS/PKS, involving peptide synthetases and polyketide synthases hybrid pathways. Besides cyanobacteria, other bacteria associated with aquatic environments are recognized as significant toxin producers, representing important issues in food safety, public health, and human and animal well being. Vibrio species are one of the most representative groups of aquatic toxin producers, commonly associated with seafood-born infections. Some enterotoxins and hemolysins have been identified as fundamental for V. cholerae and V. vulnificus pathogenesis, but there is evidence for the existence of other potential toxins. Campylobacter spp. and Escherichia coli are also water contaminants and are able to produce important toxins after infecting their hosts. Other bacteria associated with aquatic environments are emerging as toxin producers, namely Legionella pneumophila and Aeromonas hydrophila, described as responsible for the synthesis of several exotoxins, enterotoxins and cytotoxins. Furthermore, several Clostridium species can produce potent neurotoxins. Although not considered aquatic microorganisms, they are ubiquitous in the environment and can easily contaminate drinking and irrigation water

  18. Office-based endoscopic botulinum toxin injection in laryngeal movement disorders.

    PubMed

    Kaderbay, A; Righini, C A; Castellanos, P F; Atallah, I

    2018-06-01

    Botulinum toxin injection is widely used for the treatment of laryngeal movement disorders. Electromyography-guided percutaneous injection is the technique most commonly used to perform intralaryngeal botulinum toxin injection. We describe an endoscopic approach for intralaryngeal botulinum toxin injection under local anaesthesia without using electromyography. A flexible video-endoscope with an operating channel is used. After local anaesthesia of the larynx by instillation of lidocaine, a flexible needle is inserted into the operating channel in order to inject the desired dose of botulinum toxin into the vocal and/or vestibular folds. Endoscopic botulinum toxin injection under local anaesthesia is a reliable technique for the treatment of laryngeal movement disorders. It can be performed by any laryngologist without the need for electromyography. It is easy to perform for the operator and comfortable for the patient. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  19. Oligomer formation of Clostridium perfringens epsilon-toxin is induced by activation of neutral sphingomyelinase.

    PubMed

    Takagishi, Teruhisa; Oda, Masataka; Takehara, Masaya; Kobayashi, Keiko; Nagahama, Masahiro

    2016-11-01

    Clostridium perfringens epsilon-toxin is responsible for fatal enterotoxemia in ungulates. The toxin forms a heptamer in the lipid rafts of Madin-Darby Canine Kidney (MDCK) cells, leading to cell death. Here, we showed that epsilon-toxin requires neutral sphingomyelinase (nSMase) activity during oligomerization. We tested the role of nSMase in the oligomerization of epsilon-toxin using specific inhibitors, knockdown of nSMase, formation of ceramide, and localization of epsilon-toxin and ceramide by immunofluorescence staining. Epsilon-toxin induced the production of ceramide is a dose- and time-dependent manner in ACHN cells. GW4869, an inhibitor of nSMase, inhibited ceramide production induced by the toxin. GW4869 and knockdown of nSMase blocked toxin-induced cell death and oligomer formation of epsilon-toxin. Confocal microscopy images showed that the toxin induced ceramide clustering and colocalized with ceramide. These results demonstrated that oligomer formation of epsilon-toxin is facilitated by the production of ceramide through activation of nSMase caused by the toxin. Inhibitors of nSMase may confer protection against infection. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Molecular cloning of toxins expressed by the venom gland of Lasiodora sp.

    PubMed

    Vieira, A L G; Moura, M B; Babá, E H; Chávez-Olórtegui, C; Kalapothakis, E; Castro, I M

    2004-12-15

    The present work describes the identification of toxins expressed by the venom gland of the spider Lasiodora sp. The toxins LTx1, LTx2 and LTx3 were identified by the screening of a cDNA library. These toxins showed significant similarity at the amino acid level with spider toxins from Lasiodora parahybana, Eurypelma californicum, Brachypelma smithii, Selenocosmia huwena.

  1. Effects of Clostridium perfringens iota toxin in the small intestine of mice.

    PubMed

    Redondo, Leandro M; Redondo, Enzo A; Dailoff, Gabriela C; Leiva, Carlos L; Díaz-Carrasco, Juan M; Bruzzone, Octavio A; Cangelosi, Adriana; Geoghegan, Patricia; Fernandez-Miyakawa, Mariano E

    2017-12-01

    Iota toxin is a binary toxin solely produced by Clostridium perfringens type E strains, and is structurally related to CDT from C. difficile and CST from C. spiroforme. As type E causes hemorrhagic enteritis in cattle, it is usually assumed that associated diseases are mediated by iota toxin, although evidence in this regard has not been provided. In the present report, iota toxin intestinal effects were evaluated in vivo using a mouse model. Histological damage was observed in ileal loops treated with purified iota toxin after 4 h of incubation. Luminal iota toxin induced fluid accumulation in the small intestine in a dose dependent manner, as determined by the enteropooling and the intestinal loop assays. None of these changes were observed in the large intestine. These results suggest that C. perfringens iota toxin alters intestinal permeability, predominantly by inducing necrosis and degenerative changes in the mucosal epithelium of the small intestine, as well as changes in intestinal motility. The obtained results suggest a central role for iota toxin in the pathogenesis of C. perfringens type E hemorrhagic enteritis, and contribute to remark the importance of clostridial binary toxins in digestive diseases. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  2. Anti-idiotypic antibodies that protect cells against the action of diphtheria toxin

    SciTech Connect

    Rolf, J.M.; Gaudin, H.M.; Tirrell, S.M.

    1989-03-01

    An anti-idiotypic serum prepared against the combining site (idiotype) of specific anti-diphtheria toxoid antibodies was characterized with respect to its interaction with highly diphtheria toxin-sensitive Vero cells. Although the anti-idiotypic serum protected Vero cells against the cytotoxic action of diphtheria toxin, it did not prevent the binding of /sup 125/I-labeled diphtheria toxin to the cells but did inhibit the internalization and degradation of /sup 125/I-labeled toxin. This anti-idiotypic serum immunoprecipitated a cell-surface protein from radiolabeled Vero cells with an apparent Mr of approximately 15,000. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that the anti-idiotypic serum contains antibodies that carry anmore » internal image of an internalization site on the toxin and that a cell-surface protein involved in toxin internalization possesses a complementary site recognized by both the toxin and the anti-idiotypic antibodies.« less

  3. EFFECT OF MARINE TOXINS ON THERMOREGULATION IN MICE.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Marine algal toxins are extremely toxic and can represent a major health problem to humans and animals. Temperature regulation is one of many processes to be affected by exposure to these toxins. Mice and rats become markedly hypothermic when subjected to acute exposure to the ma...

  4. Clostridium perfringens Epsilon Toxin Causes Selective Death of Mature Oligodendrocytes and Central Nervous System Demyelination

    PubMed Central

    Linden, Jennifer R.; Ma, Yinghua; Zhao, Baohua; Harris, Jason Michael; Rumah, Kareem Rashid; Schaeren-Wiemers, Nicole

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin (ε-toxin) is responsible for a devastating multifocal central nervous system (CNS) white matter disease in ruminant animals. The mechanism by which ε-toxin causes white matter damage is poorly understood. In this study, we sought to determine the molecular and cellular mechanisms by which ε-toxin causes pathological changes to white matter. In primary CNS cultures, ε-toxin binds to and kills oligodendrocytes but not astrocytes, microglia, or neurons. In cerebellar organotypic culture, ε-toxin induces demyelination, which occurs in a time- and dose-dependent manner, while preserving neurons, astrocytes, and microglia. ε-Toxin specificity for oligodendrocytes was confirmed using enriched glial culture. Sensitivity to ε-toxin is developmentally regulated, as only mature oligodendrocytes are susceptible to ε-toxin; oligodendrocyte progenitor cells are not. ε-Toxin sensitivity is also dependent on oligodendrocyte expression of the proteolipid myelin and lymphocyte protein (MAL), as MAL-deficient oligodendrocytes are insensitive to ε-toxin. In addition, ε-toxin binding to white matter follows the spatial and temporal pattern of MAL expression. A neutralizing antibody against ε-toxin inhibits oligodendrocyte death and demyelination. This study provides several novel insights into the action of ε-toxin in the CNS. (i) ε-Toxin causes selective oligodendrocyte death while preserving all other neural elements. (ii) ε-Toxin-mediated oligodendrocyte death is a cell autonomous effect. (iii) The effects of ε-toxin on the oligodendrocyte lineage are restricted to mature oligodendrocytes. (iv) Expression of the developmentally regulated proteolipid MAL is required for the cytotoxic effects. (v) The cytotoxic effects of ε-toxin can be abrogated by an ε-toxin neutralizing antibody. PMID:26081637

  5. Mass Spectrometric Detection of Bacterial Protein Toxins and Their Enzymatic Activity.

    PubMed

    Kalb, Suzanne R; Boyer, Anne E; Barr, John R

    2015-08-31

    Mass spectrometry has recently become a powerful technique for bacterial identification. Mass spectrometry approaches generally rely upon introduction of the bacteria into a matrix-assisted laser-desorption time-of-flight (MALDI-TOF) mass spectrometer with mass spectrometric recognition of proteins specific to that organism that form a reliable fingerprint. With some bacteria, such as Bacillus anthracis and Clostridium botulinum, the health threat posed by these organisms is not the organism itself, but rather the protein toxins produced by the organisms. One such example is botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT), a potent neurotoxin produced by C. botulinum. There are seven known serotypes of BoNT, A-G, and many of the serotypes can be further differentiated into toxin variants, which are up to 99.9% identical in some cases. Mass spectrometric proteomic techniques have been established to differentiate the serotype or toxin variant of BoNT produced by varied strains of C. botulinum. Detection of potent biological toxins requires high analytical sensitivity and mass spectrometry based methods have been developed to determine the enzymatic activity of BoNT and the anthrax lethal toxins produced by B. anthracis. This enzymatic activity, unique for each toxin, is assessed with detection of the toxin-induced cleavage of strategically designed peptide substrates by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry offering unparalleled specificity. Furthermore, activity assays allow for the assessment of the biological activity of a toxin and its potential health risk. Such methods have become important diagnostics for botulism and anthrax. Here, we review mass spectrometry based methods for the enzymatic activity of BoNT and the anthrax lethal factor toxin.

  6. Identification of the cellular receptor for anthrax toxin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bradley, Kenneth A.; Mogridge, Jeremy; Mourez, Michael; Collier, R. John; Young, John A. T.

    2001-11-01

    The tripartite toxin secreted by Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, helps the bacterium evade the immune system and can kill the host during a systemic infection. Two components of the toxin enzymatically modify substrates within the cytosol of mammalian cells: oedema factor (OF) is an adenylate cyclase that impairs host defences through a variety of mechanisms including inhibiting phagocytosis; lethal factor (LF) is a zinc-dependent protease that cleaves mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase and causes lysis of macrophages. Protective antigen (PA), the third component, binds to a cellular receptor and mediates delivery of the enzymatic components to the cytosol. Here we describe the cloning of the human PA receptor using a genetic complementation approach. The receptor, termed ATR (anthrax toxin receptor), is a type I membrane protein with an extracellular von Willebrand factor A domain that binds directly to PA. In addition, a soluble version of this domain can protect cells from the action of the toxin.

  7. Bacterial toxin-antitoxin systems: more than selfish entities?

    PubMed

    Van Melderen, Laurence; Saavedra De Bast, Manuel

    2009-03-01

    Bacterial toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are diverse and widespread in the prokaryotic kingdom. They are composed of closely linked genes encoding a stable toxin that can harm the host cell and its cognate labile antitoxin, which protects the host from the toxin's deleterious effect. TA systems are thought to invade bacterial genomes through horizontal gene transfer. Some TA systems might behave as selfish elements and favour their own maintenance at the expense of their host. As a consequence, they may contribute to the maintenance of plasmids or genomic islands, such as super-integrons, by post-segregational killing of the cell that loses these genes and so suffers the stable toxin's destructive effect. The function of the chromosomally encoded TA systems is less clear and still open to debate. This Review discusses current hypotheses regarding the biological roles of these evolutionarily successful small operons. We consider the various selective forces that could drive the maintenance of TA systems in bacterial genomes.

  8. Botulinum toxin for treatment of the focal dystonia.

    PubMed

    Nakamura, Yusaku

    2017-07-29

    Dystonia is defined as a movement disorder characterized by sustained or intermittent muscles contraction causing abnormal, often repetitive, movements, postures, or both. Dystonic movements are typically patterned and twisting, and may be tremulous. The precis diagnosis of dystonia is difficult for physicians because neurological brain imaging does not provide enough practical information. The diagnosis is depend on clinical experience of physicians. Botulinum toxin treatment is the accepted standard of care for patients with focal dystonia. Botulinum toxin treatment results in significant improvement of decreasing the symptom of dystonia. The success of treatment is dependent on muscle selection for treating involved muscles. Usually performance of botulinum toxin treatment is injected according to clinical experience of surface anatomy or clinical location method. However, the benefit of guidance of botulinum toxin treatment is improve outcome in dystonia. Injection techniques with ultra sound echogram or EMG guidance to identify dystonic muscles can be more benefit for patients.

  9. Occurrence and sequestration of toxins in food chains.

    PubMed

    Mebs, D

    1998-11-01

    Animals may acquire toxicity by absorbing toxic compounds from their food, e.g. from plants or other animals. Sequestration and accumulation of toxins may provide protection from predators, which learn to avoid this prey because of unpleasant experiences such as bitter taste. This is a common phenomenon in marine as well as in terrestrial ecosystems. Moreover, toxins may enter food chains where they accumulate reaching high, often lethal concentrations. Palytoxin which had been primarily detected in marine zoanthids (Palythoa sp.), occurs also in a wide range of other animals, e.g. in sponges, corals, shellfish, polychaetes and crustaceans, but also in fish, which feed on crustaceans and zoanthids as well. These animals exhibit a high resistance to the toxin's action. The mechanisms which protect the Na+, K+-ATPase of their cell membranes, the primary target of palytoxin, is unknown. Sequestration of the toxin by other animals may cause health problems due to food poisoning.

  10. Neutralization of B. anthracis toxins during ex vivo phagocytosis.

    PubMed

    Tarasenko, Olga; Scott, Ashley; Jones, April; Soderberg, Lee; Alusta, Pierre

    2013-07-01

    Glycoconjugates (GCs) are recognized as stimulation and signaling agents, affecting cell adhesion, activation, and growth of living organisms. Among GC targets, macrophages are considered ideal since they play a central role in inflammation and immune responses against foreign agents. In this context, we studied the effects of highly selective GCs in neutralizing toxin factors produced by B. anthracis during phagocytosis using murine macrophages. The effects of GCs were studied under three conditions: A) prior to, B) during, and C) following exposure of macrophages to B. anthracis individual toxin (protective antigen [PA], edema factor [EF], lethal factor [LF] or toxin complexes (PA-EF-LF, PA-EF, and PA-LF). We employed ex vivo phagocytosis and post-phagocytosis analysis including direct microscopic observation of macrophage viability, and macrophage activation. Our results demonstrated that macrophages are more prone to adhere to GC-altered PA-EF-LF, PA-EF, and PA-LF toxin complexes. This adhesion results in a higher phagocytosis rate and toxin complex neutralization during phagocytosis. In addition, GCs enhance macrophage viability, activate macrophages, and stimulate nitric oxide (NO) production. The present study may be helpful in identifying GC ligands with toxin-neutralizing and/or immunomodulating properties. In addition, our study could suggest GCs as new targets for existing vaccines and the prospective development of vaccines and immunomodulators used to combat the effects of B. anthracis.

  11. Botulinum toxin treatment for facial palsy: A systematic review.

    PubMed

    Cooper, Lilli; Lui, Michael; Nduka, Charles

    2017-06-01

    Facial palsy may be complicated by ipsilateral synkinesis or contralateral hyperkinesis. Botulinum toxin is increasingly used in the management of facial palsy; however, the optimum dose, treatment interval, adjunct therapy and performance as compared with alternative treatments have not been well established. This study aimed to systematically review the evidence for the use of botulinum toxin in facial palsy. The Cochrane central register of controlled trials (CENTRAL), MEDLINE(R) (1946 to September 2015) and Embase Classic + Embase (1947 to September 2015) were searched for randomised studies using botulinum toxin in facial palsy. Forty-seven studies were identified, and three included. Their physical and patient-reported outcomes are described, and observations and cautions are discussed. Facial asymmetry has a strong correlation to subjective domains such as impairment in social interaction and perception of self-image and appearance. Botulinum toxin injections represent a minimally invasive technique that is helpful in restoring facial symmetry at rest and during movement in chronic, and potentially acute, facial palsy. Botulinum toxin in combination with physical therapy may be particularly helpful. Currently, there is a paucity of data; areas for further research are suggested. A strong body of evidence may allow botulinum toxin treatment to be nationally standardised and recommended in the management of facial palsy. Copyright © 2017 British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Targeting Metastasis with Snake Toxins: Molecular Mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Urra, Félix A.

    2017-01-01

    Metastasis involves the migration of cancer cells from a primary tumor to invade and establish secondary tumors in distant organs, and it is the main cause for cancer-related deaths. Currently, the conventional cytostatic drugs target the proliferation of malignant cells, being ineffective in metastatic disease. This highlights the need to find new anti-metastatic drugs. Toxins isolated from snake venoms are a natural source of potentially useful molecular scaffolds to obtain agents with anti-migratory and anti-invasive effects in cancer cells. While there is greater evidence concerning the mechanisms of cell death induction of several snake toxin classes on cancer cells; only a reduced number of toxin classes have been reported (i.e., disintegrins/disintegrin-like proteins, C-type lectin-like proteins, C-type lectins, serinproteases, cardiotoxins, snake venom cystatins) as inhibitors of adhesion, migration, and invasion of cancer cells. Here, we discuss the anti-metastatic mechanisms of snake toxins, distinguishing three targets, which involve (1) inhibition of extracellular matrix components-dependent adhesion and migration, (2) inhibition of epithelial-mesenchymal transition, and (3) inhibition of migration by alterations in the actin/cytoskeleton network. PMID:29189742

  13. Special issue: engineering toxins for 21st-century therapies: introduction.

    PubMed

    Acharya, K Ravi

    2011-12-01

    This special issue on 'Engineering toxins for 21st century therapies' provides a critical review of the current state of multifaceted aspects of toxin research by some of the leading researchers in the field. It also highlights the clinical potential and challenges for development of novel biologics based on engineered toxin derived products. © 2011 The Author Journal compilation © 2011 FEBS.

  14. Recent progress in the analysis of uremic toxins by mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Niwa, Toshimitsu

    2009-09-01

    Mass spectrometry (MS) has been successfully applied for the identification and quantification of uremic toxins and uremia-associated modified proteins. This review focuses on recent progress in the analysis of uremic toxins by using MS. Uremic toxins include low-molecular-weight compounds (e.g., indoxyl sulfate, p-cresol sulfate, 3-carboxy-4-methyl-5-propyl-2-furanpropionic acid, asymmetric dimethylarginine), middle-molecular-weight peptides, and proteins modified with advanced glycation and oxidation. These uremic toxins are considered to be involved in a variety of symptoms which may appear in patients with stage 5 chronic kidney disease. Based on MS analysis of these uremic toxins, the pathogenesis of the uremic symptoms will be elucidated to prevent and manage the symptoms.

  15. Fidaxomicin Inhibits Clostridium difficile Toxin A-Mediated Enteritis in the Mouse Ileum

    PubMed Central

    Koon, Hon Wai; Ho, Samantha; Hing, Tressia C.; Cheng, Michelle; Chen, Xinhua; Ichikawa, Yoshi; Kelly, Ciarán P.

    2014-01-01

    Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) is a common, debilitating infection with high morbidity and mortality. C. difficile causes diarrhea and intestinal inflammation by releasing two toxins, toxin A and toxin B. The macrolide antibiotic fidaxomicin was recently shown to be effective in treating CDI, and its beneficial effect was associated with fewer recurrent infections in CDI patients. Since other macrolides possess anti-inflammatory properties, we examined the possibility that fidaxomicin alters C. difficile toxin A-induced ileal inflammation in mice. The ileal loops of anesthetized mice were injected with fidaxomicin (5, 10, or 20 μM), and after 30 min, the loops were injected with purified C. difficile toxin A or phosphate-buffered saline alone. Four hours after toxin A administration, ileal tissues were processed for histological evaluation (epithelial cell damage, neutrophil infiltration, congestion, and edema) and cytokine measurements. C. difficile toxin A caused histologic damage, evidenced by increased mean histologic score and ileal interleukin-1β (IL-1β) protein and mRNA expression. Treatment with fidaxomicin (20 μM) or its primary metabolite, OP-1118 (120 μM), significantly inhibited toxin A-mediated histologic damage and reduced the mean histology score and ileal IL-1β protein and mRNA expression. Both fidaxomicin and OP-1118 reduced toxin A-induced cell rounding in human colonic CCD-18Co fibroblasts. Treatment of ileal loops with vancomycin (20 μM) and metronidazole (20 μM) did not alter toxin A-induced histologic damage and IL-1β protein expression. In addition to its well known antibacterial effects against C. difficile, fidaxomicin may possess anti-inflammatory activity directed against the intestinal effects of C. difficile toxins. PMID:24890583

  16. Anomericity of T-2 toxin-glucosides; masked mycotoxins in cereal crops

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    T-2 toxin is a trichothecene mycotoxin produced when the fungus Fusarium infects small grains, especially oats. Ingestion of T-2 toxin contaminated grain can cause diarrhea, hemorrhaging, and feed refusal. Cereal crops infected with mycotoxin-producing fungi form toxin glycosides, sometimes called m...

  17. Molecular Interactions between Tarantula Toxins and Low-Voltage-Activated Calcium Channels

    PubMed Central

    Salari, Autoosa; Vega, Benjamin S.; Milescu, Lorin S.; Milescu, Mirela

    2016-01-01

    Few gating-modifier toxins have been reported to target low-voltage-activated (LVA) calcium channels, and the structural basis of toxin sensitivity remains incompletely understood. Studies of voltage-gated potassium (Kv) channels have identified the S3b–S4 “paddle motif,” which moves at the protein-lipid interface to drive channel opening, as the target for these amphipathic neurotoxins. Voltage-gated calcium (Cav) channels contain four homologous voltage sensor domains, suggesting multiple toxin binding sites. We show here that the S3–S4 segments within Cav3.1 can be transplanted into Kv2.1 to examine their individual contributions to voltage sensing and pharmacology. With these results, we now have a more complete picture of the conserved nature of the paddle motif in all three major voltage-gated ion channel types (Kv, Nav, and Cav). When screened with tarantula toxins, the four paddle sequences display distinct toxin binding properties, demonstrating that gating-modifier toxins can bind to Cav channels in a domain specific fashion. Domain III was the most commonly and strongly targeted, and mutagenesis revealed an acidic residue that is important for toxin binding. We also measured the lipid partitioning strength of all toxins tested and observed a positive correlation with their inhibition of Cav3.1, suggesting a key role for membrane partitioning. PMID:27045173

  18. Uremic toxins enhance statin-induced cytotoxicity in differentiated human rhabdomyosarcoma cells.

    PubMed

    Uchiyama, Hitoshi; Tsujimoto, Masayuki; Shinmoto, Tadakazu; Ogino, Hitomi; Oda, Tomoko; Yoshida, Takuya; Furukubo, Taku; Izumi, Satoshi; Yamakawa, Tomoyuki; Tachiki, Hidehisa; Minegaki, Tetsuya; Nishiguchi, Kohshi

    2014-09-03

    The risk of myopathy and rhabdomyolysis is considerably increased in statin users with end-stage renal failure (ESRF). Uremic toxins, which accumulate in patients with ESRF, exert cytotoxic effects that are mediated by various mechanisms. Therefore, accumulation of uremic toxins might increase statin-induced cytotoxicity. The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of four uremic toxins-hippuric acid, 3-carboxy-4-methyl-5-propyl-2-furanpropionate, indole-3-acetic acid, and 3-indoxyl sulfate-on statin-induced myopathy. Differentiated rhabdomyosarcoma cells were pre-treated with the uremic toxins for seven days, and then the cells were treated with pravastatin or simvastatin. Cell viability and apoptosis were assessed by viability assays and flow cytometry. Pre-treatment with uremic toxins increased statin- but not cisplatin-induced cytotoxicity (p < 0.05 vs. untreated). In addition, the pre-treatment increased statin-induced apoptosis, which is one of the cytotoxic factors (p < 0.05 vs. untreated). However, mevalonate, farnesol, and geranylgeraniol reversed the effects of uremic toxins and lowered statin-induced cytotoxicity (p < 0.05 vs. untreated). These results demonstrate that uremic toxins enhance statin-induced apoptosis and cytotoxicity. The mechanism underlying this effect might be associated with small G-protein geranylgeranylation. In conclusion, the increased severity of statin-induced rhabdomyolysis in patients with ESRF is likely due to the accumulation of uremic toxins.

  19. Clostridium difficile Toxins A and B: Insights into Pathogenic Properties and Extraintestinal Effects

    PubMed Central

    Di Bella, Stefano; Ascenzi, Paolo; Siarakas, Steven; Petrosillo, Nicola; di Masi, Alessandra

    2016-01-01

    Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) has significant clinical impact especially on the elderly and/or immunocompromised patients. The pathogenicity of Clostridium difficile is mainly mediated by two exotoxins: toxin A (TcdA) and toxin B (TcdB). These toxins primarily disrupt the cytoskeletal structure and the tight junctions of target cells causing cell rounding and ultimately cell death. Detectable C. difficile toxemia is strongly associated with fulminant disease. However, besides the well-known intestinal damage, recent animal and in vitro studies have suggested a more far-reaching role for these toxins activity including cardiac, renal, and neurologic impairment. The creation of C. difficile strains with mutations in the genes encoding toxin A and B indicate that toxin B plays a major role in overall CDI pathogenesis. Novel insights, such as the role of a regulator protein (TcdE) on toxin production and binding interactions between albumin and C. difficile toxins, have recently been discovered and will be described. Our review focuses on the toxin-mediated pathogenic processes of CDI with an emphasis on recent studies. PMID:27153087

  20. Toxin-Antitoxin Systems in the Mobile Genome of Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans

    PubMed Central

    Bustamante, Paula; Tello, Mario; Orellana, Omar

    2014-01-01

    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are genetic modules composed of a pair of genes encoding a stable toxin and an unstable antitoxin that inhibits toxin activity. They are widespread among plasmids and chromosomes of bacteria and archaea. TA systems are known to be involved in the stabilization of plasmids but there is no consensus about the function of chromosomal TA systems. To shed light on the role of chromosomally encoded TA systems we analyzed the distribution and functionality of type II TA systems in the chromosome of two strains from Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans (ATCC 23270 and 53993), a Gram-negative, acidophilic, environmental bacterium that participates in the bioleaching of minerals. As in other environmental microorganisms, A. ferrooxidans has a high content of TA systems (28-29) and in twenty of them the toxin is a putative ribonuclease. According to the genetic context, some of these systems are encoded near or within mobile genetic elements. Although most TA systems are shared by both strains, four of them, which are encoded in the active mobile element ICEAfe1, are exclusive to the type strain ATCC 23270. We demostrated that two TA systems from ICEAfe1 are functional in E. coli cells, since the toxins inhibit growth and the antitoxins counteract the effect of their cognate toxins. All the toxins from ICEAfe1, including a novel toxin, are RNases with different ion requirements. The data indicate that some of the chromosomally encoded TA systems are actually part of the A. ferrooxidans mobile genome and we propose that could be involved in the maintenance of these integrated mobile genetic elements. PMID:25384039

  1. Lysionotin attenuates Staphylococcus aureus pathogenicity by inhibiting α-toxin expression.

    PubMed

    Teng, Zihao; Shi, Dongxue; Liu, Huanyu; Shen, Ziying; Zha, Yonghong; Li, Wenhua; Deng, Xuming; Wang, Jianfeng

    2017-09-01

    α-Toxin, one of the best known pore-forming proteins produced by Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus), is a critical virulence factor in multiple infections. The necessity of α-toxin for S. aureus pathogenicity suggests that this toxin is an important target for the development of a potential treatment strategy. In this study, we showed that lysionotin, a natural compound, can inhibit the hemolytic activity of culture supernatants by S. aureus by reducing α-toxin expression. Using real-time PCR analysis, we showed that transcription of hla (the gene encoding α-toxin) and agr (the locus regulating hla) was significantly inhibited by lysionotin. Lactate dehydrogenase and live/dead assays indicated that lysionotin effectively protected human alveolar epithelial cells against S. aureus, and in vivo studies also demonstrated that lysionotin can protect mice from pneumonia caused by S. aureus. These findings suggest that lysionotin is an efficient inhibitor of α-toxin expression and shows significant protection against S. aureus in vitro and in vivo. This study supports a potential strategy for the treatment of S. aureus infection by inhibiting the expression of virulence factors and indicates that lysionotin may be a potential treatment for S. aureus pneumonia.

  2. A New Family of Secreted Toxins in Pathogenic Neisseria Species

    PubMed Central

    Jamet, Anne; Jousset, Agnès B.; Euphrasie, Daniel; Mukorako, Paulette; Boucharlat, Alix; Ducousso, Alexia; Charbit, Alain; Nassif, Xavier

    2015-01-01

    The genus Neisseria includes both commensal and pathogenic species which are genetically closely related. However, only meningococcus and gonococcus are important human pathogens. Very few toxins are known to be secreted by pathogenic Neisseria species. Recently, toxins secreted via type V secretion system and belonging to the widespread family of contact-dependent inhibition (CDI) toxins have been described in numerous species including meningococcus. In this study, we analyzed loci containing the maf genes in N. meningitidis and N. gonorrhoeae and proposed a novel uniform nomenclature for maf genomic islands (MGIs). We demonstrated that mafB genes encode secreted polymorphic toxins and that genes immediately downstream of mafB encode a specific immunity protein (MafI). We focused on a MafB toxin found in meningococcal strain NEM8013 and characterized its EndoU ribonuclease activity. maf genes represent 2% of the genome of pathogenic Neisseria, and are virtually absent from non-pathogenic species, thus arguing for an important biological role. Indeed, we showed that overexpression of one of the four MafB toxins of strain NEM8013 provides an advantage in competition assays, suggesting a role of maf loci in niche adaptation. PMID:25569427

  3. Prokaryotic adenylate cyclase toxin stimulates anterior pituitary cells in culture

    SciTech Connect

    Cronin, M.J.; Evans, W.S.; Rogol, A.D.

    1986-08-01

    Bordetella pertussis synthesis a variety of virulence factors including a calmodulin-dependent adenylate cyclase (AC) toxin. Treatment of anterior pituitary cells with this AC toxin resulted in an increase in cellular cAMP levels that was associated with accelerated exocytosis of growth hormone (GH), prolactin, adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), and luteinizing hormone (LH). The kinetics of release of these hormones, however, were markedly different; GH and prolactin were rapidly released, while LH and ACTH secretion was more gradually elevated. Neither dopamine agonists nor somatostatin changes the ability of AC toxin to generate cAMP (up to 2 h). Low concentrations of AC toxin amplifiedmore » the secretory response to hypophysiotrophic hormones. The authors conclude that bacterial AC toxin can rapidly elevate cAMP levels in anterior pituitary cells and that it is the response that explains the subsequent acceleration of hormone release.« less

  4. Toxins and derivatives in molecular pharmaceutics: Drug delivery and targeted therapy.

    PubMed

    Zhan, Changyou; Li, Chong; Wei, Xiaoli; Lu, Wuyuan; Lu, Weiyue

    2015-08-01

    Protein and peptide toxins offer an invaluable source for the development of actively targeted drug delivery systems. They avidly bind to a variety of cognate receptors, some of which are expressed or even up-regulated in diseased tissues and biological barriers. Protein and peptide toxins or their derivatives can act as ligands to facilitate tissue- or organ-specific accumulation of therapeutics. Some toxins have evolved from a relatively small number of structural frameworks that are particularly suitable for addressing the crucial issues of potency and stability, making them an instrumental source of leads and templates for targeted therapy. The focus of this review is on protein and peptide toxins for the development of targeted drug delivery systems and molecular therapies. We summarize disease- and biological barrier-related toxin receptors, as well as targeted drug delivery strategies inspired by those receptors. The design of new therapeutics based on protein and peptide toxins is also discussed. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Trapping toxins within lipid droplets is a resistance mechanism in fungi

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Wenqiang; Zhang, Ming; Zheng, Sha; Li, Ying; Li, Xiaobin; Li, Wei; Li, Gang; Lin, Zhaomin; Xie, Zhiyu; Zhao, Zuntian; Lou, Hongxiang

    2015-01-01

    Lipid droplets (LDs) act as intracellular storage organelles in most types of cells and are principally involved in energy homeostasis and lipid metabolism. However, the role of LDs in resistance to toxins in fungi remains largely unknown. Here, we show that the trapping of endogenous toxins by LDs is a self-resistance mechanism in the toxin producer, while absorbing external lipophilic toxins is a resistance mechanism in the toxin recipient that acts to quench the production of reactive oxygen species. We found that an endolichenic fungus that generates phototoxic perylenequinones (PQs) trapped the PQs inside LDs. Using a model that incorporates the fungicidal action of hypocrellin A (HA), a PQ derivative, we showed that yeast cells escaped killing by trapping toxins inside LDs. Furthermore, LD-deficient mutants were hypersusceptible to HA-mediated phototoxins and other fungicides. Our study identified a previously unrecognised function of LDs in fungi that has implications for our understanding of environmental adaptation strategies for fungi and antifungal drug discovery. PMID:26463663

  6. Prevalence and Toxin Characteristics of Bacillus thuringiensis Isolated from Organic Vegetables.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jung-Beom; Choi, Ok-Kyung; Kwon, Sun-Mok; Cho, Seung-Hak; Park, Byung-Jae; Jin, Na Young; Yu, Yong Man; Oh, Deog-Hwan

    2017-08-28

    The prevalence and toxin characteristics of Bacillus thuringiensis isolated from 39 organic vegetables were investigated. B. thuringiensis was detected in 30 out of the 39 organic vegetables (76.9%) with a mean value of 2.60 log CFU/g. Twenty-five out of the 30 B. thuringiensis isolates (83.3%) showed insecticidal toxicity against Spodoptera exigua . The hblCDA, nheABC , and entFM genes were found to be the major toxin genes, but the ces gene was not detected in any of the tested B. thuringiensis isolates. The hemolysin BL enterotoxin was detected in all 30 B. thuringiensis isolates (100%). The non-hemolytic enterotoxin complex was found in 27 out of 30 B. thuringiensis isolates (90.0%). The B. thuringiensis tested in this study had similar toxin gene characteristics to B. cereus , which possessed more than one toxin gene. B. thuringiensis could have the potential risk of foodborne illness based on the toxin genes and toxin-producing ability.

  7. Nε-Fatty acylation of Rho GTPases by a MARTX toxin effector.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Yan; Huang, Chunfeng; Yin, Li; Wan, Muyang; Wang, Xiaofei; Li, Lin; Liu, Yanhua; Wang, Zhao; Fu, Panhan; Zhang, Ni; Chen, She; Liu, Xiaoyun; Shao, Feng; Zhu, Yongqun

    2017-10-27

    The multifunctional autoprocessing repeats-in-toxin (MARTX) toxins are a family of large toxins that are extensively distributed in bacterial pathogens. MARTX toxins are autocatalytically cleaved to multiple effector domains, which are released into host cells to modulate the host signaling pathways. The Rho guanosine triphosphatase (GTPase) inactivation domain (RID), a conserved effector domain of MARTX toxins, is implicated in cell rounding by disrupting the host actin cytoskeleton. We found that the RID is an N ε -fatty acyltransferase that covalently modifies the lysine residues in the C-terminal polybasic region of Rho GTPases. The resulting fatty acylation inhibited Rho GTPases and disrupted Rho GTPase-mediated signaling in the host. Thus, RID can mediate the lysine N ε -fatty acylation of mammalian proteins and represents a family of toxins that harbor N-fatty acyltransferase activities in bacterial pathogens. Copyright © 2017 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works.

  8. sRNA antitoxins: more than one way to repress a toxin.

    PubMed

    Wen, Jia; Fozo, Elizabeth M

    2014-08-04

    Bacterial toxin-antitoxin loci consist of two genes: one encodes a potentially toxic protein, and the second, an antitoxin to repress its function or expression. The antitoxin can either be an RNA or a protein. For type I and type III loci, the antitoxins are RNAs; however, they have very different modes of action. Type I antitoxins repress toxin protein expression through interacting with the toxin mRNA, thereby targeting the mRNA for degradation or preventing its translation or both; type III antitoxins directly bind to the toxin protein, sequestering it. Along with these two very different modes of action for the antitoxin, there are differences in the functions of the toxin proteins and the mobility of these loci between species. Within this review, we discuss the major differences as to how the RNAs repress toxin activity, the potential consequences for utilizing different regulatory strategies, as well as the confirmed and potential biological roles for these loci across bacterial species.

  9. AdE-1, a new inotropic Na(+) channel toxin from Aiptasia diaphana, is similar to, yet distinct from, known anemone Na(+) channel toxins.

    PubMed

    Nesher, Nir; Shapira, Eli; Sher, Daniel; Moran, Yehu; Tsveyer, Liora; Turchetti-Maia, Ana Luiza; Horowitz, Michal; Hochner, Binyamin; Zlotkin, Eliahu

    2013-04-01

    Heart failure is one of the most prevalent causes of death in the western world. Sea anemone contains a myriad of short peptide neurotoxins affecting many pharmacological targets, several of which possess cardiotonic activity. In the present study we describe the isolation and characterization of AdE-1 (ion channel modifier), a novel cardiotonic peptide from the sea anemone Aiptasia diaphana, which differs from other cnidarian toxins. Although AdE-1 has the same cysteine residue arrangement as sea anemone type 1 and 2 Na(+) channel toxins, its sequence contains many substitutions in conserved and essential sites and its overall homology to other toxins identified to date is low (<36%). Physiologically, AdE-1 increases the amplitude of cardiomyocyte contraction and slows the late phase of the twitch relaxation velocity with no induction of spontaneous twitching. It increases action potential duration of cardiomyocytes with no effect on its threshold and on the cell's resting potential. Similar to other sea anemone Na(+) channel toxins such as Av2 (Anemonia viridis toxin II), AdE-1 markedly inhibits Na(+) current inactivation with no significant effect on current activation, suggesting a similar mechanism of action. However, its effects on twitch relaxation velocity, action potential amplitude and on the time to peak suggest that this novel toxin affects cardiomyocyte function via a more complex mechanism. Additionally, Av2's characteristic delayed and early after-depolarizations were not observed. Despite its structural differences, AdE-1 physiologic effectiveness is comparable with Av2 with a similar ED(50) value to blowfly larvae. This finding raises questions regarding the extent of the universality of structure-function in sea anemone Na(+) channel toxins.

  10. Clostridium perfringens Epsilon Toxin Causes Selective Death of Mature Oligodendrocytes and Central Nervous System Demyelination.

    PubMed

    Linden, Jennifer R; Ma, Yinghua; Zhao, Baohua; Harris, Jason Michael; Rumah, Kareem Rashid; Schaeren-Wiemers, Nicole; Vartanian, Timothy

    2015-06-16

    Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin (ε-toxin) is responsible for a devastating multifocal central nervous system (CNS) white matter disease in ruminant animals. The mechanism by which ε-toxin causes white matter damage is poorly understood. In this study, we sought to determine the molecular and cellular mechanisms by which ε-toxin causes pathological changes to white matter. In primary CNS cultures, ε-toxin binds to and kills oligodendrocytes but not astrocytes, microglia, or neurons. In cerebellar organotypic culture, ε-toxin induces demyelination, which occurs in a time- and dose-dependent manner, while preserving neurons, astrocytes, and microglia. ε-Toxin specificity for oligodendrocytes was confirmed using enriched glial culture. Sensitivity to ε-toxin is developmentally regulated, as only mature oligodendrocytes are susceptible to ε-toxin; oligodendrocyte progenitor cells are not. ε-Toxin sensitivity is also dependent on oligodendrocyte expression of the proteolipid myelin and lymphocyte protein (MAL), as MAL-deficient oligodendrocytes are insensitive to ε-toxin. In addition, ε-toxin binding to white matter follows the spatial and temporal pattern of MAL expression. A neutralizing antibody against ε-toxin inhibits oligodendrocyte death and demyelination. This study provides several novel insights into the action of ε-toxin in the CNS. (i) ε-Toxin causes selective oligodendrocyte death while preserving all other neural elements. (ii) ε-Toxin-mediated oligodendrocyte death is a cell autonomous effect. (iii) The effects of ε-toxin on the oligodendrocyte lineage are restricted to mature oligodendrocytes. (iv) Expression of the developmentally regulated proteolipid MAL is required for the cytotoxic effects. (v) The cytotoxic effects of ε-toxin can be abrogated by an ε-toxin neutralizing antibody. Our intestinal tract is host to trillions of microorganisms that play an essential role in health and homeostasis. Disruption of this symbiotic

  11. Inhibiting Microbial Toxins Using Plant-Derived Compounds and Plant Extracts

    PubMed Central

    Upadhyay, Abhinav; Mooyottu, Shankumar; Yin, Hsinbai; Surendran Nair, Meera; Bhattaram, Varunkumar; Venkitanarayanan, Kumar

    2015-01-01

    Many pathogenic bacteria and fungi produce potentially lethal toxins that cause cytotoxicity or impaired cellular function either at the site of colonization or other locations in the body through receptor-mediated interactions. Various factors, including biotic and abiotic environments, competing microbes, and chemical cues affect toxin expression in these pathogens. Recent work suggests that several natural compounds can modulate toxin production in pathogenic microbes. However, studies explaining the mechanistic basis for their effect are scanty. This review discusses the potential of various plant-derived compounds for reducing toxin production in foodborne and other microbes. In addition, studies highlighting their anti-toxigenic mechanism(s) are discussed. PMID:28930207

  12. ADP-ribosylation by cholera toxin: functional analysis of a cellular system that stimulates the enzymic activity of cholera toxin fragment A/sub 1/

    SciTech Connect

    Gill, D.M.; Coburn, J.

    1987-10-06

    The authors have clarified relationships between cholera toxin, cholera toxin substrates, a membrane protein S that is required for toxin activity, and a soluble protein CF that is needed for the function of S. The toxin has little intrinsic ability to catalyze ADP-ribosylations unless it encounters the active form of the S protein, which is S liganded to GTP or to a GTP analogue. In the presence of CF, S x GTP forms readily, though reversibly, but a more permanent active species, S-guanosine 5'-O-(3-thiotriphosphate) (S x GTP..gamma..S), forms over a period of 10-15 min at 37/sup 0/C. Both guanosine 5'-O-(2-thiodiphosphate)more » and GTP block this quasi-permanent activation. Some S x GTP..gamma..S forms in membranes that are exposed to CF alone and then to GTP..gamma..S, with a wash in between, and it is possible that CF facilitates a G nucleotide exchange. S x GTP..gamma..S dissolved by nonionic detergents persists in solution and can be used to support the ADP-ribosylation of nucleotide-free substrates. In this circumstance, added guanyl nucleotides have no further effect. This active form of S is unstable, especially when heated, but the thermal inactivation above 45/sup 0/C is decreased by GTP..gamma..S. Active S is required equally for the ADP-ribosylation of all of cholera toxin's protein substrates, regardless of whether they bind GTP or not. They suggest that active S interacts directly with the enzymic A/sub 1/ fragments of cholera toxin and not with any toxin substrate. The activation and activity of S are independent of the state, or even the presence, of adenylate cyclase and seem to be involved with the cyclase system only via cholera toxin. S is apparently not related by function to certain other GTP binding proteins, including p21/sup ras/, and appears to be a new GTP binding protein whose physiologic role remains to be identified.« less

  13. Update on botulinum toxin and dermal fillers.

    PubMed

    Berbos, Zachary J; Lipham, William J

    2010-09-01

    The art and science of facial rejuvenation is an ever-evolving field of medicine, as evidenced by the continual development of new surgical and nonsurgical treatment modalities. Over the past 10 years, the use of botulinum toxin and dermal fillers for aesthetic purposes has risen sharply. Herein, we discuss properties of several commonly used injectable products and provide basic instruction for their use toward the goal of achieving facial rejuvenation. The demand for nonsurgical injection-based facial rejuvenation products has risen enormously in recent years. Used independently or concurrently, botulinum toxin and dermal filler agents offer an affordable, minimally invasive approach to facial rejuvenation. Botulinum toxin and dermal fillers can be used to diminish facial rhytides, restore facial volume, and sculpt facial contours, thereby achieving an aesthetically pleasing, youthful facial appearance.

  14. Treatment of proctalgia fugax with botulinum A toxin.

    PubMed

    Katsinelos, P; Kalomenopoulou, M; Christodoulou, K; Katsiba, D; Tsolkas, P; Pilpilidis, I; Papagiannis, A; Kapitsinis, I; Vasiliadis, I; Souparis, T

    2001-11-01

    Two recent studies described a temporal association between a high-amplitude and high-frequency myoelectrical activity of the anal sphincter and the occurrence of proctalgia, which suggest that paroxysmal hyperkinesis of the anus may cause proctalgia fugax. We describe a single case of proctalgia fugax responding to anal sphincter injection of Clostridium botulinum type A toxin. The presumed aetiology of proctalgia fugax is discussed and the possible mechanism of action of botulinum toxin (BTX) in this condition is outlined. Botulinum A toxin seems to be a promising treatment for patients with proctalgia fugax, and further trials appear to be worthwhile for this condition, which has been described as incurable.

  15. Nanoporous biomaterials for uremic toxin adsorption in artificial kidney systems: A review.

    PubMed

    Cheah, Wee-Keat; Ishikawa, Kunio; Othman, Radzali; Yeoh, Fei-Yee

    2017-07-01

    Hemodialysis, one of the earliest artificial kidney systems, removes uremic toxins via diffusion through a semipermeable porous membrane into the dialysate fluid. Miniaturization of the present hemodialysis system into a portable and wearable device to maintain continuous removal of uremic toxins would require that the amount of dialysate used within a closed-system is greatly reduced. Diffused uremic toxins within a closed-system dialysate need to be removed to maintain the optimum concentration gradient for continuous uremic toxin removal by the dialyzer. In this dialysate regenerative system, adsorption of uremic toxins by nanoporous biomaterials is essential. Throughout the years of artificial kidney development, activated carbon has been identified as a potential adsorbent for uremic toxins. Adsorption of uremic toxins necessitates nanoporous biomaterials, especially activated carbon. Nanoporous biomaterials are also utilized in hemoperfusion for uremic toxin removal. Further miniaturization of artificial kidney system and improvements on uremic toxin adsorption capacity would require high performance nanoporous biomaterials which possess not only higher surface area, controlled pore size, but also designed architecture or structure and surface functional groups. This article reviews on various nanoporous biomaterials used in current artificial kidney systems and several emerging nanoporous biomaterials. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part B: Appl Biomater, 105B: 1232-1240, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. THE EFFECT OF STAPHYLOCOCCUS AUREUS TOXIN ON THE KIDNEY

    PubMed Central

    VonGlahn, William C.; Weld, Julia T.

    1935-01-01

    1. The hemolytic Staphylococcus aureus elaborates a toxin in vitro that when injected intravenously produces lesions in the kidneys of rabbits and cats. 2. The toxin injures primarily the blood vessels of the kidney. PMID:19870338

  17. Effect of fatty acids on Staphylococcus aureus delta-toxin hemolytic activity.

    PubMed

    Kapral, F A

    1976-01-01

    The lysis of human erythrocytes by Staphylococcus aureus delta-toxin proceeded without a lag and was directly proportional to toxin concentration and temperature of incubation. Lysis was complete within 8 min. Addition of saturated, straight-chain fatty acids of 13 to 19 carbons increased the activity of delta-toxin, whereas those with 21 to 23 carbons were inhibitory. Palmitic acid was the fatty acid most active in augmenting delta-toxin, but its effect could be abolished by the simultaneous addition of either tricosanoic acid or egg lecithin.

  18. Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin: a malevolent molecule for animals and man?

    PubMed

    Stiles, Bradley G; Barth, Gillian; Barth, Holger; Popoff, Michel R

    2013-11-12

    Clostridium perfringens is a prolific, toxin-producing anaerobe causing multiple diseases in humans and animals. One of these toxins is epsilon, a 33 kDa protein produced by Clostridium perfringens (types B and D) that induces fatal enteric disease of goats, sheep and cattle. Epsilon toxin (Etx) belongs to the aerolysin-like toxin family. It contains three distinct domains, is proteolytically-activated and forms oligomeric pores on cell surfaces via a lipid raft-associated protein(s). Vaccination controls Etx-induced disease in the field. However, therapeutic measures are currently lacking. This review initially introduces C. perfringens toxins, subsequently focusing upon the Etx and its biochemistry, disease characteristics in various animals that include laboratory models (in vitro and in vivo), and finally control mechanisms (vaccines and therapeutics).

  19. Potency of a human monoclonal antibody to diphtheria toxin relative to equine diphtheria anti-toxin in a guinea pig intoxication model.

    PubMed

    Smith, Heidi L; Cheslock, Peter; Leney, Mark; Barton, Bruce; Molrine, Deborah C

    2016-08-17

    Prompt administration of anti-toxin reduces mortality following Corynebacterium diphtheriae infection. Current treatment relies upon equine diphtheria anti-toxin (DAT), with a 10% risk of serum sickness and rarely anaphylaxis. The global DAT supply is extremely limited; most manufacturers have ceased production. S315 is a neutralizing human IgG1 monoclonal antibody to diphtheria toxin that may provide a safe and effective alternative to equine DAT and address critical supply issues. To guide dose selection for IND-enabling pharmacology and toxicology studies, we dose-ranged S315 and DAT in a guinea pig model of diphtheria intoxication based on the NIH Minimum Requirements potency assay. Animals received a single injection of antibody premixed with toxin, were monitored for 30 days, and assigned a numeric score for clinical signs of disease. Animals receiving ≥ 27.5 µg of S315 or ≥ 1.75 IU of DAT survived whereas animals receiving ≤ 22.5 µg of S315 or ≤ 1.25 IU of DAT died, yielding a potency estimate of 17 µg S315/IU DAT (95% CI 16-21) for an endpoint of survival. Because some surviving animals exhibited transient limb weakness, likely a systemic sign of toxicity, DAT and S315 doses required to prevent hind limb paralysis were also determined, yielding a relative potency of 48 µg/IU (95% CI 38-59) for this alternate endpoint. To support advancement of S315 into clinical trials, potency estimates will be used to evaluate the efficacy of S315 versus DAT in an animal model with antibody administration after toxin exposure, more closely modeling anti-toxin therapy in humans.

  20. Mass Spectrometric Detection of Bacterial Protein Toxins and Their Enzymatic Activity

    PubMed Central

    Kalb, Suzanne R.; Boyer, Anne E.; Barr, John R.

    2015-01-01

    Mass spectrometry has recently become a powerful technique for bacterial identification. Mass spectrometry approaches generally rely upon introduction of the bacteria into a matrix-assisted laser-desorption time-of-flight (MALDI-TOF) mass spectrometer with mass spectrometric recognition of proteins specific to that organism that form a reliable fingerprint. With some bacteria, such as Bacillus anthracis and Clostridium botulinum, the health threat posed by these organisms is not the organism itself, but rather the protein toxins produced by the organisms. One such example is botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT), a potent neurotoxin produced by C. botulinum. There are seven known serotypes of BoNT, A–G, and many of the serotypes can be further differentiated into toxin variants, which are up to 99.9% identical in some cases. Mass spectrometric proteomic techniques have been established to differentiate the serotype or toxin variant of BoNT produced by varied strains of C. botulinum. Detection of potent biological toxins requires high analytical sensitivity and mass spectrometry based methods have been developed to determine the enzymatic activity of BoNT and the anthrax lethal toxins produced by B. anthracis. This enzymatic activity, unique for each toxin, is assessed with detection of the toxin-induced cleavage of strategically designed peptide substrates by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry offering unparalleled specificity. Furthermore, activity assays allow for the assessment of the biological activity of a toxin and its potential health risk. Such methods have become important diagnostics for botulism and anthrax. Here, we review mass spectrometry based methods for the enzymatic activity of BoNT and the anthrax lethal factor toxin. PMID:26404376

  1. Efficacy of botulinum toxins on bruxism: an evidence-based review.

    PubMed

    Long, Hu; Liao, Zhengyu; Wang, Yan; Liao, Lina; Lai, Wenli

    2012-02-01

    The objective of this study was to assess the efficacy of botulinum toxins on bruxism. Electronic databases (PubMed, Embase and Science Citation Index), websites (Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials and ClinicalTrials.gov) and the literature database of SIGLE (System for Information on Grey Literature in Europe) were searched from January 1990 to April 2011 for randomised controlled trials or nonrandomised studies assessing the efficacy of botulinum toxins on bruxism. There was no language restriction. Through a predefined search strategy, we retrieved 28 studies from PubMed, 94 from Embase, 60 from the Science Citation Index, two ongoing clinical trials and two from the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials. Of these, only four studies met our inclusion criteria and were finally included. Of the four included studies, two were randomised controlled trials and two were controlled before-and-after studies. These studies showed that botulinum toxin injections can reduce the frequency of bruxism events, decrease bruxism-induced pain levels and satisfy patients' self-assessment with regard to the effectiveness of botulinum toxins on bruxism. In comparison with oral splint, botulinum toxins are equally effective on bruxism. Furthermore, botulinum toxin injections at a dosage of <100 U are safe for otherwise healthy patients. Botulinum toxin injections are effective on bruxism and are safe to use. Therefore, they can be used clinically for otherwise healthy patients with bruxism. © 2012 FDI World Dental Federation.

  2. Epsilon-toxin plasmids of Clostridium perfringens type D are conjugative.

    PubMed

    Hughes, Meredith L; Poon, Rachael; Adams, Vicki; Sayeed, Sameera; Saputo, Juliann; Uzal, Francisco A; McClane, Bruce A; Rood, Julian I

    2007-11-01

    Isolates of Clostridium perfringens type D produce the potent epsilon-toxin (a CDC/U.S. Department of Agriculture overlap class B select agent) and are responsible for several economically significant enterotoxemias of domestic livestock. It is well established that the epsilon-toxin structural gene, etx, occurs on large plasmids. We show here that at least two of these plasmids are conjugative. The etx gene on these plasmids was insertionally inactivated using a chloramphenicol resistance cassette to phenotypically tag the plasmid. High-frequency conjugative transfer of the tagged plasmids into the C. perfringens type A strain JIR325 was demonstrated, and the resultant transconjugants were shown to act as donors in subsequent mating experiments. We also demonstrated the transfer of "unmarked" native epsilon-toxin plasmids into strain JIR325 by exploiting the high transfer frequency. The transconjugants isolated in these experiments expressed functional epsilon-toxin since their supernatants had cytopathic effects on MDCK cells and were toxic in mice. Using the widely accepted multiplex PCR approach for toxin genotyping, these type A-derived transconjugants were genotypically type D. These findings have significant implications for the C. perfringens typing system since it is based on the toxin profile of each strain. Our study demonstrated the fluid nature of the toxinotypes and their dependence upon the presence or absence of toxin plasmids, some of which have for the first time been shown to be conjugative.

  3. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray diffraction studies of delta-toxin from Clostridium perfringens.

    PubMed

    Huyet, Jessica; Gilbert, Maryse; Popoff, Michel R; Basak, Ajit

    2011-03-01

    Clostridium perfringens is a Gram-positive anaerobic bacterium that is responsible for a wide range of diseases in humans and both wild and domesticated animals, including birds. C. perfringens is notable for its ability to produce a plethora of toxins, e.g. phospholipases C (alpha-toxin), pore-forming toxins (epsilon-toxin, beta-toxin and enterotoxin) and binary toxins (iota-toxin). Based on alpha-, beta-, epsilon- and iota-toxin production, the bacterium is classified into five different toxinotypes (A-E). Delta-toxin, which is a 32.6 kDa protein with 290 amino acids, is one of three haemolysins released by type C and possibly by type B strains of C. perfringens. This toxin is immunogenic and lytic to erythrocytes from the even-toed ungulates sheep, goats and pigs, and is cytotoxic to other cell types such as rabbit macrophages, human monocytes and blood platelets from goats, rabbits, guinea pigs and humans. The recombinant delta-toxin has been cloned, expressed, purified and crystallized in two different crystal forms by the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion method. Of these two different crystal forms, only the form II crystal diffracted to atomic resolution (dmin=2.4 Å), while the form I crystal diffracted to only 15 Å resolution. The form II crystals belonged to space group P2(1)2(1)2, with one molecule in the crystallographic asymmetric unit and unit-cell parameters a=49.66, b=58.48, c=112.93 Å.

  4. Detection of toxins in single molecule level using deoxyribonucleic acid aptamers

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Toxins in foodstuffs are always a threat to food safety Among many toxins related to food, ricin (category B toxin) from castor beans has been mentioned in some poisoning cases happened. Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) is a widely used nanotechnology to detect biospecies in vitro and in situ. The AFM...

  5. Animal Toxins Providing Insights into TRPV1 Activation Mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Geron, Matan; Hazan, Adina

    2017-01-01

    Beyond providing evolutionary advantages, venoms offer unique research tools, as they were developed to target functionally important proteins and pathways. As a key pain receptor in the nociceptive pathway, transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1) of the TRP superfamily has been shown to be a target for several toxins, as a way of producing pain to deter predators. Importantly, TRPV1 is involved in thermoregulation, inflammation, and acute nociception. As such, toxins provide tools to understand TRPV1 activation and modulation, a critical step in advancing pain research and the development of novel analgesics. Indeed, the phytotoxin capsaicin, which is the spicy chemical in chili peppers, was invaluable in the original cloning and characterization of TRPV1. The unique properties of each subsequently characterized toxin have continued to advance our understanding of functional, structural, and biophysical characteristics of TRPV1. By building on previous reviews, this work aims to provide a comprehensive summary of the advancements made in TRPV1 research in recent years by employing animal toxins, in particular DkTx, RhTx, BmP01, Echis coloratus toxins, APHCs and HCRG21. We examine each toxin’s functional aspects, behavioral effects, and structural features, all of which have contributed to our current knowledge of TRPV1. We additionally discuss the key features of TRPV1’s outer pore domain, which proves to be the target of the currently discussed toxins. PMID:29035314

  6. Cholera toxin structure, gene regulation and pathophysiological and immunological aspects.

    PubMed

    Sánchez, J; Holmgren, J

    2008-05-01

    Many notions regarding the function, structure and regulation of cholera toxin expression have remained essentially unaltered in the last 15 years. At the same time, recent findings have generated additional perspectives. For example, the cholera toxin genes are now known to be carried by a non-lytic bacteriophage, a previously unsuspected condition. Understanding of how the expression of cholera toxin genes is controlled by the bacterium at the molecular level has advanced significantly and relationships with cell-density-associated (quorum-sensing) responses have recently been discovered. Regarding the cell intoxication process, the mode of entry and intracellular transport of cholera toxin are becoming clearer. In the immunological field, the strong oral immunogenicity of the non-toxic B subunit of cholera toxin (CTB) has been exploited in the development of a now widely licensed oral cholera vaccine. Additionally, CTB has been shown to induce tolerance against co-administered (linked) foreign antigens in some autoimmune and allergic diseases.

  7. Antiradiation Vaccine: Immunological neutralization of Radiation Toxins at Acute Radiation Syndromes.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Popov, Dmitri; Maliev, Slava

    Introduction: Current medical management of the Acute Radiation Syndromes (ARS) does not include immune prophylaxis based on the Antiradiation Vaccine. Existing principles for the treatment of acute radiation syndromes are based on the replacement and supportive therapy. Haemotopoietic cell transplantation is recomended as an important method of treatment of a Haemopoietic form of the ARS. Though in the different hospitals and institutions, 31 pa-tients with a haemopoietic form have previously undergone transplantation with stem cells, in all cases(100%) the transplantants were rejected. Lethality rate was 87%.(N.Daniak et al. 2005). A large amount of biological substances or antigens isolated from bacterias (flagellin and derivates), plants, different types of venom (honeybees, scorpions, snakes) have been studied. This biological active substances can produce a nonspecific stimulation of immune system of mammals and protect against of mild doses of irradiation. But their radioprotection efficacy against high doses of radiation were not sufficient. Relative radioprotection characteristics or adaptive properties of antioxidants were expressed only at mild doses of radiation. However antioxidants demonstrated a very low protective efficacy at high doses of radiation. Some ex-periments demonstrated even a harmful effect of antioxidants administered to animals that had severe forms of the ARS. Only Specific Radiation Toxins roused a specific antigenic stim-ulation of antibody synthesis. An active immunization by non-toxic doses of radiation toxins includes a complex of radiation toxins that we call the Specific Radiation Determinant (SRD). Immunization must be provided not less than 24 days before irradiation and it is effective up to three years and more. Active immunization by radiation toxins significantly reduces the mortality rate (100%) and improves survival rate up to 60% compare with the 0% sur-vival rate among the irradiated animals in control groups

  8. Towards an understanding of the role of Clostridium perfringens toxins in human and animal disease

    PubMed Central

    Uzal, Francisco A; Freedman, John C; Shrestha, Archana; Theoret, James R; Garcia, Jorge; Awad, Milena M; Adams, Vicki; Moore, Robert J; Rood, Julian I; McClane, Bruce A

    2014-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens uses its arsenal of >16 toxins to cause histotoxic and intestinal infections in humans and animals. It has been unclear why this bacterium produces so many different toxins, especially since many target the plasma membrane of host cells. However, it is now established that C. perfringens uses chromosomally encoded alpha toxin (a phospholipase C) and perfringolysin O (a pore-forming toxin) during histotoxic infections. In contrast, this bacterium causes intestinal disease by employing toxins encoded by mobile genetic elements, including C. perfringens enterotoxin, necrotic enteritis toxin B-like, epsilon toxin and beta toxin. Like perfringolysin O, the toxins with established roles in intestinal disease form membrane pores. However, the intestinal disease-associated toxins vary in their target specificity, when they are produced (sporulation vs vegetative growth), and in their sensitivity to intestinal proteases. Producing many toxins with diverse characteristics likely imparts virulence flexibility to C. perfringens so it can cause an array of diseases. PMID:24762309

  9. Binding Affinity of Glycoconjugates to BACILLUS Spores and Toxins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rasol, Aveen; Eassa, Souzan; Tarasenko, Olga

    2010-04-01

    Early recognition of Bacillus cereus group species is important since they can cause food-borne illnesses and deadly diseases in humans. Glycoconjugates (GCs) are carbohydrates covalently linked to non-sugar moieties including lipids, proteins or other entities. GCs are involved in recognition and signaling processes intrinsic to biochemical functions in cells. They also stimulate cell-cell adhesion and subsequent recognition and activation of receptors. We have demonstrated that GCs are involved in Bacillus cereus spore recognition. In the present study, we have investigated whether GCs possess the ability to bind and recognize B. cereus spores and Bacillus anthracis recombinant single toxins (sTX) and complex toxins (cTX). The affinity of GCs to spores + sTX and spores + cTX toxins was studied in the binding essay. Our results demonstrated that GC9 and GC10 were able to selectively bind to B. cereus spores and B. anthracis toxins. Different binding affinities for GCs were found toward Bacillus cereus spores + sTX and spores + cTX. Dilution of GCs does not impede the recognition and binding. Developed method provides a tool for simultaneous recognition and targeting of spores, bacteria toxins, and/or other entities.

  10. Indicators: Algal Toxins (microcystin)

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Algal toxins are toxic substances released by some types of algae (phytoplankton) when they are present in large quantities (blooms) and decay or degrade. High nutrient levels and warm temperatures often result in favorable conditions for algae blooms.

  11. The ζ toxin induces a set of protective responses and dormancy.

    PubMed

    Lioy, Virginia S; Machon, Cristina; Tabone, Mariangela; Gonzalez-Pastor, José E; Daugelavicius, Rimantas; Ayora, Silvia; Alonso, Juan C

    2012-01-01

    The ζε module consists of a labile antitoxin protein, ε, which in dimer form (ε(2)) interferes with the action of the long-living monomeric ζ phosphotransferase toxin through protein complex formation. Toxin ζ, which inhibits cell wall biosynthesis and may be bactericide in nature, at or near physiological concentrations induces reversible cessation of Bacillus subtilis proliferation (protective dormancy) by targeting essential metabolic functions followed by propidium iodide (PI) staining in a fraction (20-30%) of the population and selects a subpopulation of cells that exhibit non-inheritable tolerance (1-5×10(-5)). Early after induction ζ toxin alters the expression of ∼78 genes, with the up-regulation of relA among them. RelA contributes to enforce toxin-induced dormancy. At later times, free active ζ decreases synthesis of macromolecules and releases intracellular K(+). We propose that ζ toxin induces reversible protective dormancy and permeation to PI, and expression of ε(2) antitoxin reverses these effects. At later times, toxin expression is followed by death of a small fraction (∼10%) of PI stained cells that exited earlier or did not enter into the dormant state. Recovery from stress leads to de novo synthesis of ε(2) antitoxin, which blocks ATP binding by ζ toxin, thereby inhibiting its phosphotransferase activity.

  12. Foodborne pathogens and their toxins.

    PubMed

    Martinović, Tamara; Andjelković, Uroš; Gajdošik, Martina Šrajer; Rešetar, Dina; Josić, Djuro

    2016-09-16

    Foodborne pathogens, mostly bacteria and fungi, but also some viruses, prions and protozoa, contaminate food during production and processing, but also during storage and transport before consuming. During their growth these microorganisms can secrete different components, including toxins, into the extracellular environment. Other harmful substances can be also liberated and can contaminate food after disintegration of food pathogens. Some bacterial and fungal toxins can be resistant to inactivation, and can survive harsh treatment during food processing. Many of these molecules are involved in cellular processes and can indicate different mechanisms of pathogenesis of foodborne organisms. More knowledge about food contaminants can also help understand their inactivation. In the present review the use of proteomics, peptidomics and metabolomics, in addition to other foodomic methods for the detection of foodborne pathogenic fungi and bacteria, is overviewed. Furthermore, it is discussed how these techniques can be used for discovering biomarkers for pathogenicity of foodborne pathogens, determining the mechanisms by which they act, and studying their resistance upon inactivation in food of animal and plant origin. Comprehensive and comparative view into the genome and proteome of foodborne pathogens of bacterial or fungal origin and foodomic, mostly proteomic, peptidomic and metabolomic investigation of their toxin production and their mechanism of action is necessary in order to get further information about their virulence, pathogenicity and survival under stress conditions. Furthermore, these data pave the way for identification of biomarkers to trace sources of contamination with food-borne microorganisms and their endo- and exotoxins in order to ensure food safety and prevent the outbreak of food-borne diseases. Therefore, detection of pathogens and their toxins during production, transport and before consume of food produce, as well as protection against

  13. Multiplex PCR Targeting tpi (Triose Phosphate Isomerase), tcdA (Toxin A), and tcdB (Toxin B) Genes for Toxigenic Culture of Clostridium difficile

    PubMed Central

    Lemee, Ludovic; Dhalluin, Anne; Testelin, Sabrina; Mattrat, Marie-Andre; Maillard, Karine; Lemeland, Jean-François; Pons, Jean-Louis

    2004-01-01

    A multiplex PCR toxigenic culture approach was designed for simultaneous identification and toxigenic type characterization of Clostridium difficile isolates. Three pairs of primers were designed for the amplification of (i) a species-specific internal fragment of the tpi (triose phosphate isomerase) gene, (ii) an internal fragment of the tcdB (toxin B) gene, and (iii) an internal fragment of the tcdA (toxin A) gene allowing distinction between toxin A-positive, toxin B-positive (A+B+) strains and toxin A-negative, toxin B-positive (A−B+) variant strains. The reliability of the multiplex PCR was established by using a panel of 72 C. difficile strains including A+B+, A−B−, and A−B+ toxigenic types and 11 other Clostridium species type strains. The multiplex PCR assay was then included in a toxigenic culture approach for the detection, identification, and toxigenic type characterization of C. difficile in 1,343 consecutive human and animal stool samples. Overall, 111 (15.4%) of 721 human samples were positive for C. difficile; 67 (60.4%) of these samples contained A+B+ toxigenic isolates, and none of them contained A−B+ variant strains. Fifty (8%) of 622 animal samples contained C. difficile strains, which were toxigenic in 27 (54%) cases, including 1 A−B+ variant isolate. Eighty of the 721 human stool samples (37 positive and 43 negative for C. difficile culture) were comparatively tested by Premier Toxins A&B (Meridian Bioscience) and Triage C. difficile Panel (Biosite) immunoassays, the results of which were found concordant with toxigenic culture for 82.5 and 92.5% of the samples, respectively. The multiplex PCR toxigenic culture scheme described here allows combined diagnosis and toxigenic type characterization for human and animal C. difficile intestinal infections. PMID:15583303

  14. Botulinum toxin injections for children with excessive drooling.

    PubMed

    Hassin-Baer, Sharon; Scheuer, Esther; Buchman, Aron S; Jacobson, Izhak; Ben-Zeev, Bruria

    2005-02-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the feasibility of ultrasonography-guided injections of botulinum toxin A into the parotid glands of children with severe drooling (sialorrhea). Excessive drooling is common in children with chronic neurologic disorders. Preliminary observations in adults suggest that injections of botulinum toxin A into the parotid glands can decrease drooling, but the optimal dose, sites of injection, and concomitant use of imaging during injections and its use for children have not been established. Ultrasonography was used to guide the injection of botulinum toxin (10-25 IU) into both parotid glands of nine children with excessive drooling. Subjective and objective measures of the severity of drooling were collected before and after botulinum toxin A injections. A booster injection was provided if the initial response was inadequate. Injections were well tolerated, and no adverse reactions were observed. Ultrasonography revealed that the parotid gland showed a variable depth, extent, and vascularization. Eight of nine patients needed a booster injection after 1 month. Objective measures of drooling severity were improved in seven of nine patients. However, subjective improvement was reported in only three of nine patients, and this improvement was functionally significant in only one patient. Although intraparotid injection of botulinum toxin A is safe and causes a reduction in saliva production in children, the doses used in this study did not result in functionally significant improvement. Higher doses of botulinum toxin A in the parotid glands or concomitant injections into the submandibular glands can increase the efficacy of these injections. Variability in size, depth, and vascular supply of the parotid gland suggests the importance of ultrasonography guidance for optimizing injections. These results underscore the need for further studies to establish the efficacy of this treatment in children.

  15. Alpha-Toxin Promotes Staphylococcus aureus Mucosal Biofilm Formation

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Michele J.; Lin, Ying-Chi; Gillman, Aaron N.; Parks, Patrick J.; Schlievert, Patrick M.; Peterson, Marnie L.

    2012-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus causes many diseases in humans, ranging from mild skin infections to serious, life-threatening, superantigen-mediated Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS). S. aureus may be asymptomatically carried in the anterior nares or vagina or on the skin, serving as a reservoir for infection. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis clonal type USA200 is the most widely disseminated colonizer and the leading cause of TSS. The cytolysin α-toxin (also known as α-hemolysin or Hla) is the major epithelial proinflammatory exotoxin produced by TSS S. aureus USA200 isolates. The current study aims to characterize the differences between TSS USA200 strains [high (hla+) and low (hla−) α-toxin producers] in their ability to disrupt vaginal mucosal tissue and to characterize the subsequent infection. Tissue viability post-infection and biofilm formation of TSS USA200 isolates CDC587 and MN8, which contain the α-toxin pseudogene (hla−), MNPE (hla+), and MNPE isogenic hla knockout (hlaKO), were observed via LIVE/DEAD® staining and confocal microscopy. All TSS strains grew to similar bacterial densities (1–5 × 108 CFU) on the mucosa and were proinflammatory over 3 days. However, MNPE formed biofilms with significant reductions in the mucosal viability whereas neither CDC587 (hla−), MN8 (hla−), nor MNPE hlaKO formed biofilms. The latter strains were also less cytotoxic than wild-type MNPE. The addition of exogenous, purified α-toxin to MNPE hlaKO restored the biofilm phenotype. We speculate that α-toxin affects S. aureus phenotypic growth on vaginal mucosa by promoting tissue disruption and biofilm formation. Further, α-toxin mutants (hla−) are not benign colonizers, but rather form a different type of infection, which we have termed high density pathogenic variants (HDPV). PMID:22919655

  16. Survey of Genes Encoding Staphylococcal Enterotoxins, Toxic Shock Syndrome Toxin 1, and Exfoliative Toxins in Members of the Staphylococcus sciuri Group

    PubMed Central

    Dakić, Ivana; Vuković, Dragana; Stepanović, Srdjan; Hauschild, Tomasz; Ježek, Petr; Petráš, Petr; Morrison, Donald

    2005-01-01

    Genes encoding staphylococcal enterotoxins (sea to see, seg, and seh), toxic shock syndrome toxin 1 (tst), and exfoliative toxins (eta and etb) were not detected in a large panel of 48 Staphylococcus sciuri group isolates tested. This strongly suggests that production of the staphylococcal exotoxins by these bacteria is highly unlikely. PMID:16145164

  17. Clostridium perfringens Epsilon Toxin: A Malevolent Molecule for Animals and Man?

    PubMed Central

    Stiles, Bradley G.; Barth, Gillian; Barth, Holger; Popoff, Michel R.

    2013-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens is a prolific, toxin-producing anaerobe causing multiple diseases in humans and animals. One of these toxins is epsilon, a 33 kDa protein produced by Clostridium perfringens (types B and D) that induces fatal enteric disease of goats, sheep and cattle. Epsilon toxin (Etx) belongs to the aerolysin-like toxin family. It contains three distinct domains, is proteolytically-activated and forms oligomeric pores on cell surfaces via a lipid raft-associated protein(s). Vaccination controls Etx-induced disease in the field. However, therapeutic measures are currently lacking. This review initially introduces C. perfringens toxins, subsequently focusing upon the Etx and its biochemistry, disease characteristics in various animals that include laboratory models (in vitro and in vivo), and finally control mechanisms (vaccines and therapeutics). PMID:24284826

  18. K2 killer toxin-induced physiological changes in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

    PubMed

    Orentaite, Irma; Poranen, Minna M; Oksanen, Hanna M; Daugelavicius, Rimantas; Bamford, Dennis H

    2016-03-01

    Saccharomyces cerevisiae cells produce killer toxins, such as K1, K2 and K28, that can modulate the growth of other yeasts giving advantage for the killer strains. Here we focused on the physiological changes induced by K2 toxin on a non-toxin-producing yeast strain as well as K1, K2 and K28 killer strains. Potentiometric measurements were adjusted to observe that K2 toxin immediately acts on the sensitive cells leading to membrane permeability. This correlated with reduced respiration activity, lowered intracellular ATP content and decrease in cell viability. However, we did not detect any significant ATP leakage from the cells treated by killer toxin K2. Strains producing heterologous toxins K1 and K28 were less sensitive to K2 than the non-toxin producing one suggesting partial cross-protection between the different killer systems. This phenomenon may be connected to the observed differences in respiratory activities of the killer strains and the non-toxin-producing strain at low pH. This might also have practical consequences in wine industry; both as beneficial ones in controlling contaminating yeasts and non-beneficial ones causing sluggish fermentation. © FEMS 2016. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. Toxin studies using an integrated biophysical and structural biology approach.

    SciTech Connect

    Last, Julie A.; Schroeder, Anne E.; Slade, Andrea Lynn

    2005-03-01

    Clostridial neurotoxins, such as botulinum and tetanus, are generally thought to invade neural cells through a process of high affinity binding mediated by gangliosides, internalization via endosome formation, and subsequent membrane penetration of the catalytic domain activated by a pH drop in the endosome. This surface recognition and internalization process is still not well understood with regard to what specific membrane features the toxins target, the intermolecular interactions between bound toxins, and the molecular conformational changes that occur as a result of pH lowering. In an effort to elucidate the mechanism of tetanus toxin binding and permeation through the membranemore » a simple yet representative model was developed that consisted of the ganglioside G{sub tlb} incorporated in a bilayer of cholesterol and DPPC (dipalmitoylphosphatidyl choline). The bilayers were stable over time yet sensitive towards the binding and activity of whole toxin. A liposome leakage study at constant pH as well as with a pH gradient, to mimic the processes of the endosome, was used to elucidate the effect of pH on the toxin's membrane binding and permeation capability. Topographic imaging of the membrane surface, via in situ tapping mode AFM, provided nanoscale characterization of the toxin's binding location and pore formation activity.« less

  20. From poison to remedy: the chequered history of botulinum toxin.

    PubMed

    Erbguth, F J

    2008-01-01

    Botulinum toxin poisoning has afflicted mankind through the mists of time. However, the first incident of food-borne botulism was documented as late as the 18th century, when the consumption of meat and blood sausages gave rise to many deaths throughout the kingdom of Württemberg in South Western Germany. The district medical officer Justinus Kerner (1786--1862), who was also a well-known German poet, published the first accurate and complete descriptions of the symptoms of food-borne botulism between 1817 and 1822 and attributed the intoxication to a biological poison. Kerner also postulated that the toxin might be used for treatment purposes. In 1895, an outbreak of botulism in the small Belgian village of Ellezelles led to the discovery of the pathogen "Clostridium botulinum" by Emile Pierre van Ermengem. Modern botulinum toxin treatment was pioneered by Alan B. Scott and Edward J. Schantz in the early 1970s, when the type-A serotype was used in medicine to correct strabismus. Other preparations of the type-A toxin were developed and manufactured in the United Kingdom, Germany, and China, whereas a therapeutic type-B toxin was prepared in the United States. To date, the toxin has been used to treat a wide variety of conditions associated with muscular hyperactivity, glandular hypersecretions and pain.

  1. Regulating Toxin-Antitoxin Expression: Controlled Detonation of Intracellular Molecular Timebombs

    PubMed Central

    Hayes, Finbarr; Kędzierska, Barbara

    2014-01-01

    Genes for toxin-antitoxin (TA) complexes are widely disseminated in bacteria, including in pathogenic and antibiotic resistant species. The toxins are liberated from association with the cognate antitoxins by certain physiological triggers to impair vital cellular functions. TAs also are implicated in antibiotic persistence, biofilm formation, and bacteriophage resistance. Among the ever increasing number of TA modules that have been identified, the most numerous are complexes in which both toxin and antitoxin are proteins. Transcriptional autoregulation of the operons encoding these complexes is key to ensuring balanced TA production and to prevent inadvertent toxin release. Control typically is exerted by binding of the antitoxin to regulatory sequences upstream of the operons. The toxin protein commonly works as a transcriptional corepressor that remodels and stabilizes the antitoxin. However, there are notable exceptions to this paradigm. Moreover, it is becoming clear that TA complexes often form one strand in an interconnected web of stress responses suggesting that their transcriptional regulation may prove to be more intricate than currently understood. Furthermore, interference with TA gene transcriptional autoregulation holds considerable promise as a novel antibacterial strategy: artificial release of the toxin factor using designer drugs is a potential approach to induce bacterial suicide from within. PMID:24434949

  2. An insecticidal toxin from Nephila clavata spider venom.

    PubMed

    Jin, Lin; Fang, Mingqian; Chen, Mengrou; Zhou, Chunling; Ombati, Rose; Hakim, Md Abdul; Mo, Guoxiang; Lai, Ren; Yan, Xiuwen; Wang, Yumin; Yang, Shilong

    2017-07-01

    Spiders are the most successful insect predators given that they use their venom containing insecticidal peptides as biochemical weapons for preying. Due to the high specificity and potency of peptidic toxins, discoveries of insecticidal toxins from spider venom have provided an opportunity to obtain natural compounds for agricultural applications without affecting human health. In this study, a novel insecticidal toxin (μ-NPTX-Nc1a) was identified and characterized from the venom of Nephila clavata. Its primary sequence is GCNPDCTGIQCGWPRCPGGQNPVMDKCVSCCPFCPPKSAQG which was determined by automated Edman degradation, cDNA cloning, and MS/MS analysis. BLAST search indicated that Nc1a shows no similarity with known peptides or proteins, indicating that Nc1a belongs to a novel family of insecticidal peptide. Nc1a displayed inhibitory effects on Na V and K V channels in cockroach dorsal unpaired median neurons. The median lethal dose (LD50) of Nc1a on cockroach was 573 ng/g. Herein, a study that identifies a novel insecticidal toxin, which can be a potential candidate and/or template for the development of bioinsecticides, is presented.

  3. Development of a recombinant toxin fragment vaccine for Clostridium difficile infection.

    PubMed

    Karczewski, Jerzy; Zorman, Julie; Wang, Su; Miezeiewski, Matthew; Xie, Jinfu; Soring, Keri; Petrescu, Ioan; Rogers, Irene; Thiriot, David S; Cook, James C; Chamberlin, Mihaela; Xoconostle, Rachel F; Nahas, Debbie D; Joyce, Joseph G; Bodmer, Jean-Luc; Heinrichs, Jon H; Secore, Susan

    2014-05-19

    Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) is the major cause of antibiotic-associated diarrhea and pseudomembranous colitis, a disease associated with significant morbidity and mortality. The disease is mostly of nosocomial origin, with elderly patients undergoing anti-microbial therapy being particularly at risk. C. difficile produces two large toxins: Toxin A (TcdA) and Toxin B (TcdB). The two toxins act synergistically to damage and impair the colonic epithelium, and are primarily responsible for the pathogenesis associated with CDI. The feasibility of toxin-based vaccination against C. difficile is being vigorously investigated. A vaccine based on formaldehyde-inactivated Toxin A and Toxin B (toxoids) was reported to be safe and immunogenic in healthy volunteers and is now undergoing evaluation in clinical efficacy trials. In order to eliminate cytotoxic effects, a chemical inactivation step must be included in the manufacturing process of this toxin-based vaccine. In addition, the large-scale production of highly toxic antigens could be a challenging and costly process. Vaccines based on non-toxic fragments of genetically engineered versions of the toxins alleviate most of these limitations. We have evaluated a vaccine assembled from two recombinant fragments of TcdB and explored their potential as components of a novel experimental vaccine against CDI. Golden Syrian hamsters vaccinated with recombinant fragments of TcdB combined with full length TcdA (Toxoid A) developed high titer IgG responses and potent neutralizing antibody titers. We also show here that the recombinant vaccine protected animals against lethal challenge with C. difficile spores, with efficacy equivalent to the toxoid vaccine. The development of a two-segment recombinant vaccine could provide several advantages over toxoid TcdA/TcdB such as improvements in manufacturability. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Comparative Genomics Evidence That Only Protein Toxins are Tagging Bad Bugs

    PubMed Central

    Georgiades, Kalliopi; Raoult, Didier

    2011-01-01

    The term toxin was introduced by Roux and Yersin and describes macromolecular substances that, when produced during infection or when introduced parenterally or orally, cause an impairment of physiological functions that lead to disease or to the death of the infected organism. Long after the discovery of toxins, early genetic studies on bacterial virulence demonstrated that removing a certain number of genes from pathogenic bacteria decreases their capacity to infect hosts. Each of the removed factors was therefore referred to as a “virulence factor,” and it was speculated that non-pathogenic bacteria lack such supplementary factors. However, many recent comparative studies demonstrate that the specialization of bacteria to eukaryotic hosts is associated with massive gene loss. We recently demonstrated that the only features that seem to characterize 12 epidemic bacteria are toxin–antitoxin (TA) modules, which are addiction molecules in host bacteria. In this study, we investigated if protein toxins are indeed the only molecules specific to pathogenic bacteria by comparing 14 epidemic bacterial killers (“bad bugs”) with their 14 closest non-epidemic relatives (“controls”). We found protein toxins in significantly more elevated numbers in all of the “bad bugs.” For the first time, statistical principal components analysis, including genome size, GC%, TA modules, restriction enzymes, and toxins, revealed that toxins are the only proteins other than TA modules that are correlated with the pathogenic character of bacteria. Moreover, intracellular toxins appear to be more correlated with the pathogenic character of bacteria than secreted toxins. In conclusion, we hypothesize that the only truly identifiable phenomena, witnessing the convergent evolution of the most pathogenic bacteria for humans are the loss of metabolic activities, i.e., the outcome of the loss of regulatory and transcription factors and the presence of protein toxins, alone, or

  5. Botulinum Toxin in Pediatric Neurology

    PubMed Central

    Abdallah, Enas Abdallah Ali

    2015-01-01

    Botulinum neurotoxins are natural molecules produced by anaerobic spore-forming bacteria called Clostradium boltulinum. The toxin has a peculiar mechanism of action by preventing the release of acetylcholine from the presynaptic membrane. Consequently, it has been used in the treatment of various neurological conditions related to muscle hyperactivity and/or spasticity. Also, it has an impact on the autonomic nervous system by acting on smooth muscle, leading to its use in the management of pain syndromes. The use of botulinum toxin in children separate from adults has received very little attention in the literature. This review presents the current data on the use of botulinum neurotoxin to treat various neurological disorders in children. PMID:27335961

  6. Harnessing the glucosyltransferase activities of Clostridium difficile for functional studies of toxins A and B.

    PubMed

    Darkoh, Charles; Kaplan, Heidi B; Dupont, Herbert L

    2011-08-01

    The incidence of Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) has been increasing within the last decade. Pathogenic strains of C. difficile produce toxin A and/or toxin B, which are important virulence factors in the pathogenesis of this bacterium. Current methods for diagnosing CDI are mostly qualitative tests that detect either the bacterium or the toxins. We have developed an assay (Cdifftox activity assay) to detect C. difficile toxin A and B activities that is quantitative and cost-efficient and utilizes a substrate that is stereochemically similar to the native substrate of the toxins (UDP-glucose). To characterize toxin activity, toxins A and B were purified from culture supernatants by ammonium sulfate precipitation and chromatography through DEAE-Sepharose and gel filtration columns. The activities of the final fractions were quantitated using the Cdifftox activity assay and compared to the results of a toxin A- and B-specific enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The affinity for the substrate was >4-fold higher for toxin B than for toxin A. Moreover, the rate of cleavage of the substrate was 4.3-fold higher for toxin B than for toxin A. The optimum temperature for both toxins ranged from 35 to 40°C at pH 8. Culture supernatants from clinical isolates obtained from the stools of patients suspected to be suffering from CDI were tested using the Cdifftox activity assay, and the results were compared to those of ELISA and PCR amplification of the toxin genes. Our results demonstrate that this new assay is comparable to the current commercial ELISA for detecting the toxins in the samples tested and has the added advantage of quantitating toxin activity.

  7. Geldanamycin Enhances Retrograde Transport of Shiga Toxin in HEp-2 Cells

    PubMed Central

    Simm, Roger; Torgersen, Maria Lyngaas; Sandvig, Kirsten

    2015-01-01

    The heat shock protein 90 (Hsp90) inhibitor geldanamycin (GA) has been shown to alter endosomal sorting, diverting cargo destined for the recycling pathway into the lysosomal pathway. Here we investigated whether GA also affects the sorting of cargo into the retrograde pathway from endosomes to the Golgi apparatus. As a model cargo we used the bacterial toxin Shiga toxin, which exploits the retrograde pathway as an entry route to the cytosol. Indeed, GA treatment of HEp-2 cells strongly increased the Shiga toxin transport to the Golgi apparatus. The enhanced Golgi transport was not due to increased endocytic uptake of the toxin or perturbed recycling, suggesting that GA selectively enhances endosomal sorting into the retrograde pathway. Moreover, GA activated p38 and both inhibitors of p38 or its substrate MK2 partially counteracted the GA-induced increase in Shiga toxin transport. Thus, our data suggest that GA-induced p38 and MK2 activation participate in the increased Shiga toxin transport to the Golgi apparatus. PMID:26017782

  8. Changes in intestinal fluid and mucosal immune responses to cholera toxin in Giardia muris infection and binding of cholera toxin to Giardia muris trophozoites.

    PubMed

    Ljungström, I; Holmgren, J; Svennerholm, A M; Ferrante, A

    1985-10-01

    The effect of Giardia muris infection on the diarrheal response and gut mucosal antibody response to cholera toxin was examined in mice. The results obtained showed that the fluid accumulation in intestinal loops exposed to cholera toxin was increased in mice infected with a low number (5 X 10(4) ) of G. muris cysts compared with the response in noninfected mice. This effect was associated with a marked reduction in absorption of oral rehydration fluid from the intestine. In contrast, mice infected with a high dose (2 X 10(5) ) of cysts showed a marked decrease in fluid accumulation in response to the toxin. This decrease might be related to the finding that both G. muris and Giardia lamblia trophozoites can bind significant amounts of cholera toxin. Evidence is presented which suggests that the gut mucosal antibody response, mainly immunoglobulin A but also immunoglobulin G, to an immunization course with perorally administered cholera toxin was depressed in mice infected with G. muris. The reduction in antibody levels was particularly evident when the primary immunization was made very early after infection. The serum antitoxin antibodies to the oral immunization with cholera toxin were, however, not affected. Likewise, the delayed-type hypersensitivity response against sheep erythrocytes in animals primed subcutaneously with sheep erythrocytes was not modified during the course of G. muris infection.

  9. Characterization of the Enzymatic Component of the ADP-Ribosyltransferase Toxin CDTa from Clostridium difficile

    PubMed Central

    Gülke, Irene; Pfeifer, Gunther; Liese, Jan; Fritz, Michaela; Hofmann, Fred; Aktories, Klaus; Barth, Holger

    2001-01-01

    Certain strains of Clostridium difficile produce the ADP-ribosyltransferase CDT, which is a binary actin ADP-ribosylating toxin. The toxin consists of the binding component CDTb, which mediates receptor binding and cellular uptake, and the enzyme component CDTa. Here we studied the enzyme component (CDTa) of the toxin using the binding component of Clostridium perfringens iota toxin (Ib), which is interchangeable with CDTb as a transport component. Ib was used because CDTb was not expressed as a recombinant protein in Escherichia coli. Similar to iota toxin, CDTa ADP-ribosylates nonmuscle and skeletal muscle actin. The N-terminal part of CDTa (CDTa1–240) competes with full-length CDTa for binding to the iota toxin binding component. The C-terminal part (CDTa244–263) harbors the enzyme activity but was much less active than the full-length CDTa. Changes of Glu428 and Glu430 to glutamine, Ser388 to alanine, and Arg345 to lysine blocked ADP-ribosyltransferase activity. Comparison of CDTa with C. perfringens iota toxin and Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin revealed full enzyme activity of the fragment Ia208–413 but loss of activity of several N-terminally deleted C2I proteins including C2I103–431, C2I190–431, and C2I30–431. The data indicate that CDTa belongs to the iota toxin subfamily of binary actin ADP-ribosylating toxins with respect to interaction with the binding component and substrate specificity. It shares typical conserved amino acid residues with iota toxin and C2 toxin that are suggested to be involved in NAD-binding and/or catalytic activity. The enzyme components of CDT, iota toxin, and C2 toxin differ with respect to the minimal structural requirement for full enzyme activity. PMID:11553537

  10. Analysis of the mechanisms that underlie absorption of botulinum toxin by the inhalation route.

    PubMed

    Al-Saleem, Fetweh H; Ancharski, Denise M; Joshi, Suresh G; Elias, M; Singh, Ajay; Nasser, Zidoon; Simpson, Lance L

    2012-12-01

    Botulinum toxin is a highly potent oral and inhalation poison, which means that the toxin must have an efficient mechanism for penetration of epithelial barriers. To date, three models for toxin passage across epithelial barriers have been proposed: (i) the toxin itself undergoes binding and transcytosis; (ii) an auxiliary protein, HA35, transports toxin from the apical to the basal side of epithelial cells; and (iii) an auxiliary protein, HA35, acts on the basal side of epithelial cells to disrupt tight junctions, and this permits paracellular flux of toxin. These models were evaluated by studying toxin absorption following inhalation exposure in mice. Three types of experiments were conducted. In the first, the potency of pure neurotoxin was compared with that of progenitor toxin complex, which contains HA35. The results showed that the rate and extent of toxin absorption, as well as the potency of absorbed toxin, did not depend upon, nor were they enhanced by, the presence of HA35. In the second type of experiment, the potencies of pure neurotoxin and progenitor toxin complex were compared in the absence or presence of antibodies on the apical side of epithelial cells. Antibodies directed against the neurotoxin protected against challenge, but antibodies against HA35 did not. In the final type of experiment, the potency of pure neurotoxin and toxin complex was compared in animals pretreated to deliver antibodies to the basal side of epithelial cells. Once again, antibodies directed against the neurotoxin provided resistance to challenge, but antibodies directed against HA35 did not. Taken collectively, the data indicate that the toxin by itself is capable of crossing epithelial barriers. The data do not support any hypothesis in which HA35 is essential for toxin penetration of epithelial barriers.

  11. Potency of a human monoclonal antibody to diphtheria toxin relative to equine diphtheria anti-toxin in a guinea pig intoxication model

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Heidi L.; Cheslock, Peter; Leney, Mark; Barton, Bruce; Molrine, Deborah C.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Prompt administration of anti-toxin reduces mortality following Corynebacterium diphtheriae infection. Current treatment relies upon equine diphtheria anti-toxin (DAT), with a 10% risk of serum sickness and rarely anaphylaxis. The global DAT supply is extremely limited; most manufacturers have ceased production. S315 is a neutralizing human IgG1 monoclonal antibody to diphtheria toxin that may provide a safe and effective alternative to equine DAT and address critical supply issues. To guide dose selection for IND-enabling pharmacology and toxicology studies, we dose-ranged S315 and DAT in a guinea pig model of diphtheria intoxication based on the NIH Minimum Requirements potency assay. Animals received a single injection of antibody premixed with toxin, were monitored for 30 days, and assigned a numeric score for clinical signs of disease. Animals receiving ≥ 27.5 µg of S315 or ≥ 1.75 IU of DAT survived whereas animals receiving ≤ 22.5 µg of S315 or ≤ 1.25 IU of DAT died, yielding a potency estimate of 17 µg S315/IU DAT (95% CI 16–21) for an endpoint of survival. Because some surviving animals exhibited transient limb weakness, likely a systemic sign of toxicity, DAT and S315 doses required to prevent hind limb paralysis were also determined, yielding a relative potency of 48 µg/IU (95% CI 38–59) for this alternate endpoint. To support advancement of S315 into clinical trials, potency estimates will be used to evaluate the efficacy of S315 versus DAT in an animal model with antibody administration after toxin exposure, more closely modeling anti-toxin therapy in humans. PMID:27070129

  12. A rational nomenclature for naming peptide toxins from spiders and other venomous animals.

    PubMed

    King, Glenn F; Gentz, Margaret C; Escoubas, Pierre; Nicholson, Graham M

    2008-08-01

    Molecular toxinology research was initially driven by an interest in the small subset of animal toxins that are lethal to humans. However, the realization that many venomous creatures possess a complex repertoire of bioactive peptide toxins with potential pharmaceutical and agrochemical applications has led to an explosion in the number of new peptide toxins being discovered and characterized. Unfortunately, this increased awareness of peptide-toxin diversity has not been matched by the development of a generic nomenclature that enables these toxins to be rationally classified, catalogued, and compared. In this article, we introduce a rational nomenclature that can be applied to the naming of peptide toxins from spiders and other venomous animals.

  13. Attenuation of Ricin Toxin under Ambient Conditions and ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Report This study focused on the attenuation of ricin toxin on six types of materials representative of a mail sorting facility and/or indoor building materials. Attenuation tests were conducted under various combinations of temperature, relative humidity (RH), and contact time, using two forms of ricin toxin: a commercially-available pure preparation and a crude preparation from castor beans.

  14. Diversification of Type VI Secretion System Toxins Reveals Ancient Antagonism among Bee Gut Microbes

    PubMed Central

    Whiteley, Marvin

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT Microbial communities are shaped by interactions among their constituent members. Some Gram-negative bacteria employ type VI secretion systems (T6SSs) to inject protein toxins into neighboring cells. These interactions have been theorized to affect the composition of host-associated microbiomes, but the role of T6SSs in the evolution of gut communities is not well understood. We report the discovery of two T6SSs and numerous T6SS-associated Rhs toxins within the gut bacteria of honey bees and bumble bees. We sequenced the genomes of 28 strains of Snodgrassella alvi, a characteristic bee gut microbe, and found tremendous variability in their Rhs toxin complements: altogether, these strains appear to encode hundreds of unique toxins. Some toxins are shared with Gilliamella apicola, a coresident gut symbiont, implicating horizontal gene transfer as a source of toxin diversity in the bee gut. We use data from a transposon mutagenesis screen to identify toxins with antibacterial function in the bee gut and validate the function and specificity of a subset of these toxin and immunity genes in Escherichia coli. Using transcriptome sequencing, we demonstrate that S. alvi T6SSs and associated toxins are upregulated in the gut environment. We find that S. alvi Rhs loci have a conserved architecture, consistent with the C-terminal displacement model of toxin diversification, with Rhs toxins, toxin fragments, and cognate immunity genes that are expressed and confer strong fitness effects in vivo. Our findings of T6SS activity and Rhs toxin diversity suggest that T6SS-mediated competition may be an important driver of coevolution within the bee gut microbiota. PMID:29233893

  15. Cytotoxic Effects of Environmental Toxins on Human Glial Cells.

    PubMed

    D'Mello, Fiona; Braidy, Nady; Marçal, Helder; Guillemin, Gilles; Rossi, Fanny; Chinian, Mirielle; Laurent, Dominique; Teo, Charles; Neilan, Brett A

    2017-02-01

    Toxins produced by cyanobacteria and dinoflagellates have increasingly become a public health concern due to their degenerative effects on mammalian tissue and cells. In particular, emerging evidence has called attention to the neurodegenerative effects of the cyanobacterial toxin β-N-methylamino-L-alanine (BMAA). Other toxins such as the neurotoxins saxitoxin and ciguatoxin, as well as the hepatotoxic microcystin, have been previously shown to have a range of effects upon the nervous system. However, the capacity of these toxins to cause neurodegeneration in human cells has not, to our knowledge, been previously investigated. This study aimed to examine the cytotoxic effects of BMAA, microcystin-LR (MC-LR), saxitoxin (STX) and ciguatoxin (CTX-1B) on primary adult human astrocytes. We also demonstrated that α-lipoate attenuated MC-LR toxicity in primary astrocytes and characterised changes in gene expression which could potentially be caused by these toxins in primary astrocytes. Herein, we are the first to show that all of these toxins are capable of causing physiological changes consistent with neurodegeneration in glial cells, via oxidative stress and excitotoxicity, leading to a reduction in cell proliferation culminating in cell death. In addition, MC-LR toxicity was reduced significantly in astrocytes-treated α-lipoic acid. While there were no significant changes in gene expression, many of the probes that were altered were associated with neurodegenerative disease pathogenesis. Overall, this is important in advancing our current understanding of the mechanism of toxicity of MC-LR on human brain function in vitro, particularly in the context of neurodegeneration.

  16. First evidence of "paralytic shellfish toxins" and cylindrospermopsin in a Mexican freshwater system, Lago Catemaco, and apparent bioaccumulation of the toxins in "tegogolo" snails (Pomacea patula catemacensis).

    PubMed

    Berry, John P; Lind, Owen

    2010-05-01

    Exposure to cyanobacterial toxins in freshwater systems, including both direct (e.g., drinking water) and indirect (e.g., bioaccumulation in food webs) routes, is emerging as a potentially significant threat to human health. We investigated cyanobacterial toxins, specifically cylindrospermopsin (CYN), the microcystins (MCYST) and the "paralytic shellfish toxins" (PST), in Lago Catemaco (Veracruz, Mexico). Lago Catemaco is a tropical lake dominated by Cylindrospermopsis, specifically identified as Cylindrospermopsis catemaco and Cylindrospermopsis philippinensis, and characterized by an abundant, endemic species of snail (Pomacea patula catemacensis), known as "tegogolos," that is both consumed locally and commercially important. Samples of water, including dissolved and particulate fractions, as well as extracts of tegogolos, were screened using highly specific and sensitive ELISA. ELISA identified CYN and PST at low concentrations in only one sample of seston; however, both toxins were detected at appreciable quantities in tegogolos. Calculated bioaccumulation factors (BAF) support bioaccumulation of both toxins in tegogolos. The presence of CYN in the phytoplankton was further confirmed by HPLC-UV and LC-MS, following concentration and extraction of algal cells, but the toxin could not be confirmed by these methods in tegogolos. These data represent the first published evidence for CYN and the PST in Lago Catemaco and, indeed, for any freshwater system in Mexico. Identification of the apparent bioaccumulation of these toxins in tegogolos may suggest the need to further our understanding of the transfer of cyanobacterial toxins in freshwater food webs as it relates to human health. Copyright 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Temperature effects on kinetics of paralytic shellfish toxin elimination in Atlantic surfclams, Spisula solidissima

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Monica Bricelj, V.; Cembella, Allan D.; Laby, David

    2014-05-01

    Surfclams, Spisula solidissima, pose a particular health risk for human consumption as they are characterized by accumulation of extremely high levels of toxins associated with paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP), slow toxin elimination and an extremely high post-ingestive capacity for toxin bioconversion. Surfclam populations experience a wide range of temperatures along the NW Atlantic continental shelf, and are undergoing range contraction that has been attributed to global warming. In this study the influence of temperature (5, 12 and 21 °C) on detoxification kinetics of individual PSP toxins in two tissue compartments of juvenile surfclams (∼35 mm shell length) was determined under controlled laboratory conditions, over prolonged (2.4 months) depuration. Clams were toxified with a representative regional Gulf of Maine isolate of the dinoflagellate Alexandrium fundyense of known toxin profile, allowing tracking of changes in toxin composition and calculated toxicity in surfclam tissues. The visceral mass detoxified at all temperatures, although toxin loss rate increased with increasing temperature. In contrast, total toxin content and calculated toxicities in other tissues remained constant or even increased during depuration, suggesting a physiological or biochemical toxin-retention mechanism in this tissue pool and temperature-independent detoxification. In vivo toxin compositional changes in surfclam tissues found in this study provide evidence of specific toxin conversion pathways, involving both reductive and decarbamoylation pathways. We conclude that such toxin biotransformations, especially in non-visceral tissues, may introduce a discrepancy in describing kinetics of total toxicity (in saxitoxin equivalents [STXeq]) of S. solidissima over prolonged detoxification. Nevertheless, use of total toxicity values generated by routine regulatory monitoring based upon mouse bioassays or calculated from chemical analytical determination of molar toxin

  18. Involvement of tachykinin receptors in Clostridium perfringens beta-toxin-induced plasma extravasation

    PubMed Central

    Nagahama, Masahiro; Morimitsu, Shinsuke; Kihara, Atsushi; Akita, Masahiko; Setsu, Koujun; Sakurai, Jun

    2003-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens beta-toxin causes dermonecrosis and oedema in the dorsal skin of animals. In the present study, we investigated the mechanisms of oedema induced by the toxin. The toxin induced plasma extravasation in the dorsal skin of Balb/c mice. The extravasation was significantly inhibited by diphenhydramine, a histamine 1 receptor antagonist. However, the toxin did not cause the release of histamine from mouse mastocytoma cells. Tachykinin NK1 receptor antagonists, [D-Pro2, D-Trp7,9]-SP, [D-Pro4, D-Trp7,9]-SP and spantide, inhibited the toxin-induced leakage in a dose-dependent manner. Furthermore, the non-peptide tachykinin NK1 receptor antagonist, SR140333, markedly inhibited the toxin-induced leakage. The leakage induced by the toxin was markedly reduced in capsaicin-pretreated mouse skin but the leakage was not affected by systemic pretreatment with a calcitonin gene-related peptide receptor antagonist (CGRP8-37). The toxin-induced leakage was significantly inhibited by the N-type Ca2+ channel blocker, ω-conotoxin MVIIA, and the bradykinin B2 receptor antagonist, HOE140 (D-Arg-[Hyp3, Thi5, D-Tic7, Oic8]-bradykinin), but was not affected by the selective L-type Ca2+ channel blocker, verapamil, the P-type Ca2+ channel blocker, ω-agatoxin IVA, tetrodotoxin (TTX), the TTX-resistant Na+ channel blocker, carbamazepine, or the sensory nerve conduction blocker, lignocaine. These results suggest that plasma extravasation induced by beta-toxin in mouse skin is mediated via a mechanism involving tachykinin NK1 receptors. PMID:12522069

  19. The ζ Toxin Induces a Set of Protective Responses and Dormancy

    PubMed Central

    Tabone, Mariangela; Gonzalez-Pastor, José E.; Daugelavicius, Rimantas; Ayora, Silvia; Alonso, Juan C.

    2012-01-01

    The ζε module consists of a labile antitoxin protein, ε, which in dimer form (ε2) interferes with the action of the long-living monomeric ζ phosphotransferase toxin through protein complex formation. Toxin ζ, which inhibits cell wall biosynthesis and may be bactericide in nature, at or near physiological concentrations induces reversible cessation of Bacillus subtilis proliferation (protective dormancy) by targeting essential metabolic functions followed by propidium iodide (PI) staining in a fraction (20–30%) of the population and selects a subpopulation of cells that exhibit non-inheritable tolerance (1–5×10−5). Early after induction ζ toxin alters the expression of ∼78 genes, with the up-regulation of relA among them. RelA contributes to enforce toxin-induced dormancy. At later times, free active ζ decreases synthesis of macromolecules and releases intracellular K+. We propose that ζ toxin induces reversible protective dormancy and permeation to PI, and expression of ε2 antitoxin reverses these effects. At later times, toxin expression is followed by death of a small fraction (∼10%) of PI stained cells that exited earlier or did not enter into the dormant state. Recovery from stress leads to de novo synthesis of ε2 antitoxin, which blocks ATP binding by ζ toxin, thereby inhibiting its phosphotransferase activity. PMID:22295078

  20. The ERdj5-Sel1L complex facilitates cholera toxin retrotranslocation

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Jeffrey M.; Inoue, Takamasa; Banks, Lindsey; Tsai, Billy

    2013-01-01

    Cholera toxin (CT) traffics from the host cell surface to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), where the toxin's catalytic CTA1 subunit retrotranslocates to the cytosol to induce toxicity. In the ER, CT is captured by the E3 ubiquitin ligase Hrd1 via an undefined mechanism to prepare for retrotranslocation. Using loss-of-function and gain-of-function approaches, we demonstrate that the ER-resident factor ERdj5 promotes CTA1 retrotranslocation, in part, via its J domain. This Hsp70 cochaperone regulates binding between CTA and the ER Hsp70 BiP, a chaperone previously implicated in toxin retrotranslocation. Importantly, ERdj5 interacts with the Hrd1 adaptor Sel1L directly through Sel1L's N-terminal lumenal domain, thereby linking ERdj5 to the Hrd1 complex. Sel1L itself also binds CTA and facilitates toxin retrotranslocation. By contrast, EDEM1 and OS-9, two established Sel1L binding partners, do not play significant roles in CTA1 retrotranslocation. Our results thus identify two ER factors that promote ER-to-cytosol transport of CTA1. They also indicate that ERdj5, by binding to Sel1L, triggers BiP–toxin interaction proximal to the Hrd1 complex. We postulate this scenario enables the Hrd1-associated retrotranslocation machinery to capture the toxin efficiently once the toxin is released from BiP. PMID:23363602

  1. Botulinum Toxin Injections Reduce Associative Plasticity in Patients with Primary Dystonia

    PubMed Central

    Kojovic, Maja; Caronni, Antonio; Bologna, Matteo; Rothwell, John C.; Bhatia, Kailash P.; Edwards, Mark J.

    2014-01-01

    Botulinum toxin injections ameliorate dystonic symptoms by blocking the neuromuscular junction and weakening dystonic contractions. We asked if botulinum toxin injections in dystonia patients might also affect the integrity of sensorimotor cortical plasticity, one of the key pathophysiological features of dystonia. We applied a paired associative stimulation protocol, known to induce long-term potentiation–like changes in the primary motor cortex hand area to 12 patients with cervical dystonia before and 1 and 3 months after botulinum toxin injections to the neck muscles. Primary motor cortex excitability was probed by measuring transcranial magnetic stimulation-evoked motor evoked potentials before and after paired associative stimulation. We also measured the input–output curve, short-interval intracortical inhibition, intracortical facilitation, short afferent inhibition, and long afferent inhibition in hand muscles and the clinical severity of dystonia. Before botulinum toxin injections, paired associative stimulation significantly facilitated motor evoked potentials in hand muscles. One month after injections, this effect was abolished, with partial recovery after 3 months. There were significant positive correlations between the facilitation produced by paired associative stimulation and (1) the time elapsed since botulinum toxin injections and (2) the clinical dystonia score. One effect of botulinum toxin injection treatment is to modulate afferent input from the neck. We propose that subsequent reorganization of the motor cortex representation of hand muscles may explain the effect of botulinum toxin on motor cortical plasticity. PMID:21469207

  2. Heterologous Expression of Toxins from Bacterial Toxin-Antitoxin Systems in Eukaryotic Cells: Strategies and Applications

    PubMed Central

    Yeo, Chew Chieng; Abu Bakar, Fauziah; Chan, Wai Ting; Espinosa, Manuel; Harikrishna, Jennifer Ann

    2016-01-01

    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are found in nearly all prokaryotic genomes and usually consist of a pair of co-transcribed genes, one of which encodes a stable toxin and the other, its cognate labile antitoxin. Certain environmental and physiological cues trigger the degradation of the antitoxin, causing activation of the toxin, leading either to the death or stasis of the host cell. TA systems have a variety of functions in the bacterial cell, including acting as mediators of programmed cell death, the induction of a dormant state known as persistence and the stable maintenance of plasmids and other mobile genetic elements. Some bacterial TA systems are functional when expressed in eukaryotic cells and this has led to several innovative applications, which are the subject of this review. Here, we look at how bacterial TA systems have been utilized for the genetic manipulation of yeasts and other eukaryotes, for the containment of genetically modified organisms, and for the engineering of high expression eukaryotic cell lines. We also examine how TA systems have been adopted as an important tool in developmental biology research for the ablation of specific cells and the potential for utility of TA systems in antiviral and anticancer gene therapies. PMID:26907343

  3. 9 CFR 121.4 - Overlap select agents and toxins.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... this section that have been genetically modified. (d) Overlap select agents or toxins that meet any of... OF AGRICULTURE VIRUSES, SERUMS, TOXINS, AND ANALOGOUS PRODUCTS; ORGANISMS AND VECTORS POSSESSION, USE...) Genetic elements, recombinant and/or synthetic nucleic acids, and recombinant and/or synthetic organisms...

  4. 9 CFR 121.4 - Overlap select agents and toxins.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... this section that have been genetically modified. (d) Overlap select agents or toxins that meet any of... OF AGRICULTURE VIRUSES, SERUMS, TOXINS, AND ANALOGOUS PRODUCTS; ORGANISMS AND VECTORS POSSESSION, USE...) Genetic elements, recombinant and/or synthetic nucleic acids, and recombinant and/or synthetic organisms...

  5. Polyvalent Recognition of Biopolymers:The Design of Potent Inhibitors of Anthrax Toxin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kane, Ravi

    2007-03-01

    Polyvalency -- the simultaneous binding of multiple ligands on one entity to multiple receptors on another -- is a phenomenon that is ubiquitous in nature. We are using a biomimetic approach, inspired by polyvalency, to design potent inhibitors of anthrax toxin. Since the major symptoms and death from anthrax are due primarily to the action of anthrax toxin, the toxin is a prime target for therapeutic intervention. We describe the design of potent polyvalent anthrax toxin inhibitors, and will discuss the role of pattern matching in polyvalent recognition. Pattern-matched polyvalent inhibitors can neutralize anthrax toxin in vivo, and may enable the successful treatment of anthrax during the later stages of the disease, when antibiotic treatment is ineffective.

  6. CYANOBACTERIA AND THEIR TOXINS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Science Questions

    Harmful algal blooms (HAB) of cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae, have recently become more spatially and temporally prevalent in the US and worldwide. Cyanobacteria and their highly potent toxins are a significant hazard for human health and ...

  7. CYANOBACTERIA AND THEIR TOXINS.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Science Questions

    Harmful algal blooms (HAB) of cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae, have recently become more spatially and temporally prevalent in the US and worldwide. Cyanobacteria and their highly potent toxins are a significant hazard for human health and ...

  8. The Regulatory Networks That Control Clostridium difficile Toxin Synthesis

    PubMed Central

    Martin-Verstraete, Isabelle; Peltier, Johann; Dupuy, Bruno

    2016-01-01

    The pathogenic clostridia cause many human and animal diseases, which typically arise as a consequence of the production of potent exotoxins. Among the enterotoxic clostridia, Clostridium difficile is the main causative agent of nosocomial intestinal infections in adults with a compromised gut microbiota caused by antibiotic treatment. The symptoms of C. difficile infection are essentially caused by the production of two exotoxins: TcdA and TcdB. Moreover, for severe forms of disease, the spectrum of diseases caused by C. difficile has also been correlated to the levels of toxins that are produced during host infection. This observation strengthened the idea that the regulation of toxin synthesis is an important part of C. difficile pathogenesis. This review summarizes our current knowledge about the regulators and sigma factors that have been reported to control toxin gene expression in response to several environmental signals and stresses, including the availability of certain carbon sources and amino acids, or to signaling molecules, such as the autoinducing peptides of quorum sensing systems. The overlapping regulation of key metabolic pathways and toxin synthesis strongly suggests that toxin production is a complex response that is triggered by bacteria in response to particular states of nutrient availability during infection. PMID:27187475

  9. Ancient Diversification of Three-Finger Toxins in Micrurus Coral Snakes.

    PubMed

    Dashevsky, Daniel; Fry, Bryan G

    2018-01-01

    Coral snakes, most notably the genus Micrurus, are the only terrestrial elapid snakes in the Americas. Elapid venoms are generally known for their potent neurotoxicity which is usually caused by Three-Finger Toxin (3FTx) proteins. These toxins can have a wide array of functions that have been characterized from the venom of other elapids. We examined publicly available sequences from Micrurus 3FTx to show that they belong to 8 monophyletic clades that diverged as deep in the 3FTx phylogenetic tree as the other clades with characterized functions. Functional residues from previously characterized clades of 3FTx are not well conserved in most of the Micrurus toxin clades. We also analyzed the patterns of selection on these toxins and find that they have been diversifying at different rates, with some having undergone extreme diversifying selection. This suggests that Micrurus 3FTx may contain a previously underappreciated functional diversity that has implications for the clinical outcomes of bite victims, the evolution and ecology of the genus, as well as the potential for biodiscovery efforts focusing on these toxins.

  10. Toxins and drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Harvey, Alan L

    2014-12-15

    Components from venoms have stimulated many drug discovery projects, with some notable successes. These are briefly reviewed, from captopril to ziconotide. However, there have been many more disappointments on the road from toxin discovery to approval of a new medicine. Drug discovery and development is an inherently risky business, and the main causes of failure during development programmes are outlined in order to highlight steps that might be taken to increase the chances of success with toxin-based drug discovery. These include having a clear focus on unmet therapeutic needs, concentrating on targets that are well-validated in terms of their relevance to the disease in question, making use of phenotypic screening rather than molecular-based assays, and working with development partners with the resources required for the long and expensive development process. Copyright © 2014 The Author. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  11. Mycosporine-Like Amino Acids and Marine Toxins - The Common and the Different

    PubMed Central

    Klisch, Manfred; Häder, Donat-P.

    2008-01-01

    Marine microorganisms harbor a multitude of secondary metabolites. Among these are toxins of different chemical classes as well as the UV-protective mycosporine-like amino acids (MAAs). The latter form a group of water-soluble, low molecular-weight (generally < 400) compounds composed of either an aminocyclohexenone or an aminocyclohexenimine ring, carrying amino acid or amino alcohol substituents. So far there has been no report of toxicity in MAAs but nevertheless there are some features they have in common with marine toxins. Among the organisms producing MAAs are cyanobacteria, dinoflagellates and diatoms that also synthesize toxins. As in cyclic peptide toxins found in cyanobacteria, amino acids are the main building blocks of MAAs. Both, MAAs and some marine toxins are transferred to other organisms e.g. via the food chains, and chemical modifications can take place in secondary consumers. In contrast to algal toxins, the physiological role of MAAs is clearly the protection from harmful UV radiation by physical screening. However, other roles, e.g. as osmolytes and antioxidants, are also considered. In this paper the common characteristics of MAAs and marine toxins are discussed as well as the differences. PMID:18728764

  12. Ten Mistakes To Avoid When Injecting Botulinum Toxin.

    PubMed

    Ruiz-Rodriguez, R; Martin-Gorgojo, A

    2015-01-01

    Injection of botulinum toxin is currently the most common cosmetic procedure in the United States, and in recent years it has become-together with dermal fillers-the mainstay of therapy for the prevention and treatment of facial aging. However, in some cases the treatment may lead to a somewhat unnatural appearance, usually caused by loss of facial expression or other telltale signs. In the present article, we review the 10 mistakes that should be avoided when injecting botulinum toxin. We also reflect on how treatment with botulinum toxin influences us through our facial expressions, both in terms of how we feel and what others perceive. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier España, S.L.U. and AEDV. All rights reserved.

  13. Gene-Trap Mutagenesis Identifies Mammalian Genes Contributing to Intoxication by Clostridium perfringens ε-Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Ivie, Susan E.; Fennessey, Christine M.; Sheng, Jinsong; Rubin, Donald H.; McClain, Mark S.

    2011-01-01

    The Clostridium perfringens ε-toxin is an extremely potent toxin associated with lethal toxemias in domesticated ruminants and may be toxic to humans. Intoxication results in fluid accumulation in various tissues, most notably in the brain and kidneys. Previous studies suggest that the toxin is a pore-forming toxin, leading to dysregulated ion homeostasis and ultimately cell death. However, mammalian host factors that likely contribute to ε-toxin-induced cytotoxicity are poorly understood. A library of insertional mutant Madin Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells, which are highly susceptible to the lethal affects of ε-toxin, was used to select clones of cells resistant to ε-toxin-induced cytotoxicity. The genes mutated in 9 surviving resistant cell clones were identified. We focused additional experiments on one of the identified genes as a means of validating the experimental approach. Gene expression microarray analysis revealed that one of the identified genes, hepatitis A virus cellular receptor 1 (HAVCR1, KIM-1, TIM1), is more abundantly expressed in human kidney cell lines than it is expressed in human cells known to be resistant to ε-toxin. One human kidney cell line, ACHN, was found to be sensitive to the toxin and expresses a larger isoform of the HAVCR1 protein than the HAVCR1 protein expressed by other, toxin-resistant human kidney cell lines. RNA interference studies in MDCK and in ACHN cells confirmed that HAVCR1 contributes to ε-toxin-induced cytotoxicity. Additionally, ε-toxin was shown to bind to HAVCR1 in vitro. The results of this study indicate that HAVCR1 and the other genes identified through the use of gene-trap mutagenesis and RNA interference strategies represent important targets for investigation of the process by which ε-toxin induces cell death and new targets for potential therapeutic intervention. PMID:21412435

  14. Gene-trap mutagenesis identifies mammalian genes contributing to intoxication by Clostridium perfringens ε-toxin.

    PubMed

    Ivie, Susan E; Fennessey, Christine M; Sheng, Jinsong; Rubin, Donald H; McClain, Mark S

    2011-03-11

    The Clostridium perfringens ε-toxin is an extremely potent toxin associated with lethal toxemias in domesticated ruminants and may be toxic to humans. Intoxication results in fluid accumulation in various tissues, most notably in the brain and kidneys. Previous studies suggest that the toxin is a pore-forming toxin, leading to dysregulated ion homeostasis and ultimately cell death. However, mammalian host factors that likely contribute to ε-toxin-induced cytotoxicity are poorly understood. A library of insertional mutant Madin Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells, which are highly susceptible to the lethal affects of ε-toxin, was used to select clones of cells resistant to ε-toxin-induced cytotoxicity. The genes mutated in 9 surviving resistant cell clones were identified. We focused additional experiments on one of the identified genes as a means of validating the experimental approach. Gene expression microarray analysis revealed that one of the identified genes, hepatitis A virus cellular receptor 1 (HAVCR1, KIM-1, TIM1), is more abundantly expressed in human kidney cell lines than it is expressed in human cells known to be resistant to ε-toxin. One human kidney cell line, ACHN, was found to be sensitive to the toxin and expresses a larger isoform of the HAVCR1 protein than the HAVCR1 protein expressed by other, toxin-resistant human kidney cell lines. RNA interference studies in MDCK and in ACHN cells confirmed that HAVCR1 contributes to ε-toxin-induced cytotoxicity. Additionally, ε-toxin was shown to bind to HAVCR1 in vitro. The results of this study indicate that HAVCR1 and the other genes identified through the use of gene-trap mutagenesis and RNA interference strategies represent important targets for investigation of the process by which ε-toxin induces cell death and new targets for potential therapeutic intervention.

  15. Effect of the Specific Toxin in Helminthosporium victoriae on Host Cell Membranes 1

    PubMed Central

    Samaddar, K. R.; Scheffer, R. P.

    1968-01-01

    Helminthosporium victoriae toxin, which affects only hosts of the toxin-producing fungus, causes loss of electrolytes from roots, leaves, and coleoptiles of treated plants. Root hair cells lost the ability to plasmolyze after 20 minutes exposure to toxin in solution; comparable resistant cells retained plasmolytic ability during 3 hours exposure. Toxin stopped uptake of exogenous amino acids and Pi by susceptible but not by resistant tissue. Incorporation of 32P into organic-P and 14C-amino acids into protein was blocked in susceptible but not in resistant tissue. Apparent free space increased in susceptible but not in resistant roots. The increase was evident within 30 minutes, and reached 80% free space after 2 hours exposure to toxin. When cell wall-free protoplasts were exposed to 0.16 μg toxin/ml, protoplasmic streaming stopped and all plasma membranes of susceptible protoplasts broke within 1 hour. Resistant protoplasts were not affected significantly. Data support the hypothesis of a primary lesion of toxin in the plasma membrane. Effects on synthesis could result from lack of transport of exogenous solutes to sites of synthesis. It is possible that all other observed effects of toxin are secondary to membrane damage. PMID:16656731

  16. Laboratory and Clinical features of EIA Toxin-positive and EIA Toxin-negative Community-acquired Clostridium difficile Infection.

    PubMed

    Patel, Hiren; Randhawa, Jeewanjot; Nanavati, Sushant; Marton, L Randy; Baddoura, Walid J; DeBari, Vincent A

    2015-01-01

    Studies have described the clinical course of patients with Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) with positive enzyme immunoassay (EIA) for toxins A and B. Limited information is available for the patients with negative EIA but positive for the toxin B gene (TcdB) by the PCR. The aim of our study is to determine if there are any differences that exist among the clinical and laboratory parameters in the patients tested to be positive by EIA for toxin and those who were negative. This is a retrospective cohort study conducted in a 700-bed teaching hospital. We reviewed charts of the patients with presumptive CDI between January 2006 and July 2013. We divided these patients into two groups, EIA-positive and EIA-negative, based on result of EIA for toxins A and B and the requirement for a positive PCR analysis of the TcdB gene. The EIA-positive group had significantly higher white blood cell counts (p<0.001), with a significantly greater percentage of bands (p<0.0001). Albumin and total protein both exhibit significantly (p<0.0001, both comparisons) lower values in the EIA-positive group. Among clinical findings, the EIA-positive group had significantly longer length of hospital stay (p=0.010). These data suggest that an infection with an EIA-negative strain of C. difficile presents laboratory markers closer to those of healthy subjects and clinical features suggesting considerably less severe than infection with EIA-positive C. difficile. © 2015 by the Association of Clinical Scientists, Inc.

  17. Reduced foodborne toxin exposure is a benefit of improving dietary diversity.

    PubMed

    Wu, Felicia; Mitchell, Nicole J; Male, Denis; Kensler, Thomas W

    2014-10-01

    Naturally occurring foodborne toxins are common in subsistence diets of low-income human populations worldwide. Often, these populations rely on one or two staple foods for the bulk of their calories, making them more susceptible to chronic intake of certain toxins. Exposure to common foodborne toxins is associated with diverse conditions such as cancer, immunotoxicity, growth impairment, and neurological deficits. Interventions focused solely on reducing toxin levels have proven difficult to sustain. Using case studies of two foodborne toxins, aflatoxin and cassava cyanide, this article addresses the heightened risk of particular diseases from eating monotonous diets based in maize, groundnuts, and cassava: common in sub-Saharan Africa and parts of Asia. We also discuss the potential role of increased dietary diversity in counteracting these diseases. Increased dietary diversity can reduce consumption of toxins and increase intake of nutrients that could counteract the toxicity of such chemicals. In Qidong, China, a population that previously consumed a monotonous maize-based diet and increased dietary diversity since the 1980s has experienced a dramatic reduction in liver cancer mortalities. That liver cancer decreased as dietary diversity increased is the catalyst for the hypothesis that dietary diversity could have a direct impact on reducing health effects of foodborne toxins. Future research, agricultural development, and food policy reforms should take into consideration the multifaceted benefits associated with improved dietary diversity. Collaborations between toxicologists, nutritionists, and policymakers are important to development of sustainable interventions to reduce foodborne toxin exposure and promote health through increased dietary diversity. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society of Toxicology. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  18. Troublesome toxins: Time to re-think plant-herbivore interactions in vertebrate ecology

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Swihart, R.K.; DeAngelis, D.L.; Feng, Z.; Bryant, J.P.

    2009-01-01

    Earlier models of plant-herbivore interactions relied on forms of functional response that related rates of ingestion by herbivores to mechanical or physical attributes such as bite size and rate. These models fail to predict a growing number of findings that implicate chemical toxins as important determinants of plant-herbivore dynamics. Specifically, considerable evidence suggests that toxins set upper limits on food intake for many species of herbivorous vertebrates. Herbivores feeding on toxin-containing plants must avoid saturating their detoxification systems, which often occurs before ingestion rates are limited by mechanical handling of food items. In light of the importance of plant toxins, a new approach is needed to link herbivores to their food base. We discuss necessary features of such an approach, note recent advances in herbivore functional response models that incorporate effects of plant toxins, and mention predictions that are consistent with observations in natural systems. Future ecological studies will need to address explicitly the importance of plant toxins in shaping plant and herbivore communities.

  19. An Overview of Helicobacter pylori VacA Toxin Biology

    PubMed Central

    Foegeding, Nora J.; Caston, Rhonda R.; McClain, Mark S.; Ohi, Melanie D.; Cover, Timothy L.

    2016-01-01

    The VacA toxin secreted by Helicobacter pylori enhances the ability of the bacteria to colonize the stomach and contributes to the pathogenesis of gastric adenocarcinoma and peptic ulcer disease. The amino acid sequence and structure of VacA are unrelated to corresponding features of other known bacterial toxins. VacA is classified as a pore-forming toxin, and many of its effects on host cells are attributed to formation of channels in intracellular sites. The most extensively studied VacA activity is its capacity to stimulate vacuole formation, but the toxin has many additional effects on host cells. Multiple cell types are susceptible to VacA, including gastric epithelial cells, parietal cells, T cells, and other types of immune cells. This review focuses on the wide range of VacA actions that are detectable in vitro, as well as actions of VacA in vivo that are relevant for H. pylori colonization of the stomach and development of gastric disease. PMID:27271669

  20. Cationic PAMAM dendrimers as pore-blocking binary toxin inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Förstner, Philip; Bayer, Fabienne; Kalu, Nnanya; Felsen, Susanne; Förtsch, Christina; Aloufi, Abrar; Ng, David Y W; Weil, Tanja; Nestorovich, Ekaterina M; Barth, Holger

    2014-07-14

    Dendrimers are unique highly branched macromolecules with numerous groundbreaking biomedical applications under development. Here we identified poly(amido amine) (PAMAM) dendrimers as novel blockers for the pore-forming B components of the binary anthrax toxin (PA63) and Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin (C2IIa). These pores are essential for delivery of the enzymatic A components of the internalized toxins from endosomes into the cytosol of target cells. We demonstrate that at low μM concentrations cationic PAMAM dendrimers block PA63 and C2IIa to inhibit channel-mediated transport of the A components, thereby protecting HeLa and Vero cells from intoxication. By channel reconstitution and high-resolution current recording, we show that the PAMAM dendrimers obstruct transmembrane PA63 and C2IIa pores in planar lipid bilayers at nM concentrations. These findings suggest a new potential role for the PAMAM dendrimers as effective polyvalent channel-blocking inhibitors, which can protect human target cells from intoxication with binary toxins from pathogenic bacteria.

  1. Mechanisms of Action and Cell Death Associated with Clostridium perfringens Toxins.

    PubMed

    Navarro, Mauricio A; McClane, Bruce A; Uzal, Francisco A

    2018-05-22

    Clostridium perfringens uses its large arsenal of protein toxins to produce histotoxic, neurologic and intestinal infections in humans and animals. The major toxins involved in diseases are alpha (CPA), beta (CPB), epsilon (ETX), iota (ITX), enterotoxin (CPE), and necrotic B-like (NetB) toxins. CPA is the main virulence factor involved in gas gangrene in humans, whereas its role in animal diseases is limited and controversial. CPB is responsible for necrotizing enteritis and enterotoxemia, mostly in neonatal individuals of many animal species, including humans. ETX is the main toxin involved in enterotoxemia of sheep and goats. ITX has been implicated in cases of enteritis in rabbits and other animal species; however, its specific role in causing disease has not been proved. CPE is responsible for human food-poisoning and non-foodborne C. perfringens -mediated diarrhea. NetB is the cause of necrotic enteritis in chickens. In most cases, host⁻toxin interaction starts on the plasma membrane of target cells via specific receptors, resulting in the activation of intracellular pathways with a variety of effects, commonly including cell death. In general, the molecular mechanisms of cell death associated with C. perfringens toxins involve features of apoptosis, necrosis and/or necroptosis.

  2. Organic toxins as tools to understand ion channel mechanisms and structure.

    PubMed

    Morales-Lázaro, Sara Luz; Hernández-García, Enrique; Serrano-Flores, Barbara; Rosenbaum, Tamara

    2015-01-01

    Ion channels constitute a varied class of membrane proteins with pivotal roles in cellular physiology and that are fundamental for neuronal signaling, hormone secretion and muscle contractility. Hence, it is not unanticipated that toxins from diverse organisms have evolved to modulate the activity of ion channels. For instance, animals such as cone snails, scorpions, spiders and snakes use toxins to immobilize and capture their prey by affecting ion channel function. This is a beautiful example of an evolutionary process that has led to the development of an injection apparatus from predators and to the existence of toxins with high affinity and specificity for a given target. Toxins have been used in the field of ion channel biophysics for several decades to gain insight into the gating mechanisms and the structure of ion channels. Through the use of these peptides, much has been learned about the ion conduction pathways, voltage-sensing mechanisms, pore sizes, kinetics, inactivation processes, etc. This review examines an assortment of toxins that have been used to study different ion channels and describes some key findings about the structure-function relationships in these proteins through the details of the toxin-ion channel interactions.

  3. Targeting Staphylococcus aureus Toxins: A Potential form of Anti-Virulence Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Kong, Cin; Neoh, Hui-min; Nathan, Sheila

    2016-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is an opportunistic pathogen and the leading cause of a wide range of severe clinical infections. The range of diseases reflects the diversity of virulence factors produced by this pathogen. To establish an infection in the host, S. aureus expresses an inclusive set of virulence factors such as toxins, enzymes, adhesins, and other surface proteins that allow the pathogen to survive under extreme conditions and are essential for the bacteria’s ability to spread through tissues. Expression and secretion of this array of toxins and enzymes are tightly controlled by a number of regulatory systems. S. aureus is also notorious for its ability to resist the arsenal of currently available antibiotics and dissemination of various multidrug-resistant S. aureus clones limits therapeutic options for a S. aureus infection. Recently, the development of anti-virulence therapeutics that neutralize S. aureus toxins or block the pathways that regulate toxin production has shown potential in thwarting the bacteria’s acquisition of antibiotic resistance. In this review, we provide insights into the regulation of S. aureus toxin production and potential anti-virulence strategies that target S. aureus toxins. PMID:26999200

  4. Paralytic shellfish toxins in phytoplankton and shellfish samples collected from the Bohai Sea, China.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yang; Yu, Ren-Cheng; Kong, Fan-Zhou; Chen, Zhen-Fan; Dai, Li; Gao, Yan; Zhang, Qing-Chun; Wang, Yun-Feng; Yan, Tian; Zhou, Ming-Jiang

    2017-02-15

    Phytoplankton and shellfish samples collected periodically from 5 representative mariculture zones around the Bohai Sea, Laishan (LS), Laizhou (LZ), Hangu (HG), Qinhuangdao (QHD) and Huludao (HLD), were analysed for paralytic shellfish toxins (PSTs) using an high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) method. Toxins were detected in 13 out of 20 phytoplankton samples, and N-sulfocarbamoyl toxins (C1/2) were predominant components of PSTs in phytoplankton samples with relatively low toxin content. However, two phytoplankton samples with high PST content collected from QHD and LS had unique toxin profiles characterized by high-potency carbamoyl toxins (GTX1/4) and decarbamoyl toxins (dcGTX2/3 and dcSTX), respectively. PSTs were commonly found in shellfish samples, and toxin content ranged from 0 to 27.6nmol/g. High level of PSTs were often found in scallops and clams. Shellfish from QHD in spring, and LZ and LS in autumn exhibited high risks of PST contamination. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. From Toxins Targeting Ligand Gated Ion Channels to Therapeutic Molecules

    PubMed Central

    Nasiripourdori, Adak; Taly, Valérie; Grutter, Thomas; Taly, Antoine

    2011-01-01

    Ligand-gated ion channels (LGIC) play a central role in inter-cellular communication. This key function has two consequences: (i) these receptor channels are major targets for drug discovery because of their potential involvement in numerous human brain diseases; (ii) they are often found to be the target of plant and animal toxins. Together this makes toxin/receptor interactions important to drug discovery projects. Therefore, toxins acting on LGIC are presented and their current/potential therapeutic uses highlighted. PMID:22069709

  6. Phenol-Soluble Modulin Toxins of Staphylococcus haemolyticus.

    PubMed

    Da, Fei; Joo, Hwang-Soo; Cheung, Gordon Y C; Villaruz, Amer E; Rohde, Holger; Luo, Xiaoxing; Otto, Michael

    2017-01-01

    Coagulase-negative staphylococci (CoNS) are important nosocomial pathogens and the leading cause of sepsis. The second most frequently implicated species, after Staphylococcus epidermidis , is Staphylococcus haemolyticus . However, we have a significant lack of knowledge about what causes virulence of S. haemolyticus , as virulence factors of this pathogen have remained virtually unexplored. In contrast to the aggressive pathogen Staphylococcus aureus , toxin production has traditionally not been associated with CoNS. Recent findings have suggested that phenol-soluble modulins (PSMs), amphipathic peptide toxins with broad cytolytic activity, are widespread in staphylococci, but there has been no systematic assessment of PSM production in CoNS other than S. epidermidis . Here, we identified, purified, and characterized PSMs of S. haemolyticus . We found three PSMs of the β-type, which correspond to peptides that before were described to have anti-gonococcal activity. We also detected an α-type PSM that has not previously been described. Furthermore, we confirmed that S. haemolyticus does not produce a δ-toxin, as results from genome sequencing had indicated. All four S. haemolyticus PSMs had strong pro-inflammatory activity, promoting neutrophil chemotaxis. Notably, we identified in particular the novel α-type PSM, S. haemolyticus PSMα, as a potent hemolysin and leukocidin. For the first time, our study describes toxins of this important staphylococcal pathogen with the potential to have a significant impact on virulence during blood infection and sepsis.

  7. Structure of a bacterial toxin-activating acyltransferase.

    PubMed

    Greene, Nicholas P; Crow, Allister; Hughes, Colin; Koronakis, Vassilis

    2015-06-09

    Secreted pore-forming toxins of pathogenic Gram-negative bacteria such as Escherichia coli hemolysin (HlyA) insert into host-cell membranes to subvert signal transduction and induce apoptosis and cell lysis. Unusually, these toxins are synthesized in an inactive form that requires posttranslational activation in the bacterial cytosol. We have previously shown that the activation mechanism is an acylation event directed by a specialized acyl-transferase that uses acyl carrier protein (ACP) to covalently link fatty acids, via an amide bond, to specific internal lysine residues of the protoxin. We now reveal the 2.15-Å resolution X-ray structure of the 172-aa ApxC, a toxin-activating acyl-transferase (TAAT) from pathogenic Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae. This determination shows that bacterial TAATs are a structurally homologous family that, despite indiscernible sequence similarity, form a distinct branch of the Gcn5-like N-acetyl transferase (GNAT) superfamily of enzymes that typically use acyl-CoA to modify diverse bacterial, archaeal, and eukaryotic substrates. A combination of structural analysis, small angle X-ray scattering, mutagenesis, and cross-linking defined the solution state of TAATs, with intermonomer interactions mediated by an N-terminal α-helix. Superposition of ApxC with substrate-bound GNATs, and assay of toxin activation and binding of acyl-ACP and protoxin peptide substrates by mutated ApxC variants, indicates the enzyme active site to be a deep surface groove.

  8. Pasteurella multocida Toxin Manipulates T Cell Differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Hildebrand, Dagmar; Heeg, Klaus; Kubatzky, Katharina F.

    2015-01-01

    Pasteurella multocida causes various diseases in a broad range of wild and domestic animals. Toxigenic strains of the serotypes A and D produce an AB protein toxin named Pasteurella multocida toxin (PMT). PMT constitutively activates the heterotrimeric G protein subunits Gαq, Gα13, and Gαi through deamidation of a glutamine residue, which results in cytoskeletal rearrangements as well as increased proliferation and survival of the host cell. In human monocytes, PMT alters the lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced activation toward a phenotype that suppresses T cell activation. Here we describe that the toxin also modulates CD4-positive T helper (Th) cells directly. PMT amplifies the expansion of Th cells through enhanced cell cycle progression and suppression of apoptosis and manipulates the differentiation of Th subclasses through activation of Signal Transducers and Activators of Transcription (STAT) family members and induction of subtype-specific master transcription factors. A large population of toxin-treated T cells is double-positive for Foxp3 and RORγt, the transcription factors expressed by Treg and Th17 cells, respectively. This suggests that these cells could have the potential to turn into Th17 cells or suppressive Treg cells. However, in terms of function, the PMT-differentiated cells behave as inflammatory Th17 cells that produce IL-17 and trigger T cell proliferation. PMID:26635744

  9. Diffusion, spread, and migration of botulinum toxin.

    PubMed

    Ramirez-Castaneda, Juan; Jankovic, Joseph; Comella, Cynthia; Dashtipour, Khashayar; Fernandez, Hubert H; Mari, Zoltan

    2013-11-01

    Botulinum toxin (BoNT) is an acetylcholine release inhibitor and a neuromuscular blocking agent used for the treatment of a variety of neurologic and medical conditions. The efficacy and safety of BoNT depends on accurate selection and identification of intended targets but also may be determined by other factors, including physical spread of the molecule from the injection site, passive diffusion, and migration to distal sites via axonal or hematogenous transport. The passive kinetic dispersion of the toxin away from the injection site in a gradient-dependent manner may also play a role in toxin spread. In addition to unique properties of the various BoNT products, volume and dilution may also influence local and systemic distribution of BoNT. Most of the local and remote complications of BoNT injections are thought to be due to unwanted spread or diffusion of the toxin's biologic activity into adjacent and distal muscles. Despite widespread therapeutic and cosmetic use of BoNT over more than three decades, there is a remarkable paucity of published data on the mechanisms of distribution and its effects on clinical outcomes. The primary aim of this article is to critically review the available experimental and clinical literature and place it in the practical context. © 2013 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.

  10. Cellular recovery from exposure to sub-optimal concentrations of AB toxins that inhibit protein synthesis.

    PubMed

    Cherubin, Patrick; Quiñones, Beatriz; Teter, Ken

    2018-02-06

    Ricin, Shiga toxin, exotoxin A, and diphtheria toxin are AB-type protein toxins that act within the host cytosol and kill the host cell through pathways involving the inhibition of protein synthesis. It is thought that a single molecule of cytosolic toxin is sufficient to kill the host cell. Intoxication is therefore viewed as an irreversible process. Using flow cytometry and a fluorescent reporter system to monitor protein synthesis, we show a single molecule of cytosolic toxin is not sufficient for complete inhibition of protein synthesis or cell death. Furthermore, cells can recover from intoxication: cells with a partial loss of protein synthesis will, upon removal of the toxin, increase the level of protein production and survive the toxin challenge. Thus, in contrast to the prevailing model, ongoing toxin delivery to the cytosol appears to be required for the death of cells exposed to sub-optimal toxin concentrations.

  11. ADP-ribosylation of membrane components by pertussis and cholera toxin

    SciTech Connect

    Ribeiro-Neto, F.A.P.; Mattera, F.; Hildebrandt, J.D.

    1985-01-01

    Pertussis and cholera toxins are important tools to investigate functional and structural aspects of the stimulatory (N/sub s/) and inhibitory (N/sub i/) regulatory components of adenylyl cyclase. Cholera toxin acts on N/sub s/ by ADP-ribosylating its ..cap alpha../sub s/ subunit; pertussis toxin acts on N/sub i/ by ADP-ribosylating its ..cap alpha..; subunit. By using (/sup 32/P)NAD/sup +/ and determining the transfer of its (/sup 32/P)ADP-ribose moiety to membrane components, it is possible to obtain information on N/sub s/ and N/sub i/. A set of protocols is presented that can be used to study simultaneously and comparatively the susceptibility of N/submore » s/ and N/sub i/ to be ADP-ribosylated by cholera and pertussis toxin.« less

  12. Shiga toxins, and the genes encoding them, in fecal samples from native Idaho ungulates.

    PubMed

    Gilbreath, Jeremy J; Shields, Malcolm S; Smith, Rebekah L; Farrell, Larry D; Sheridan, Peter P; Spiegel, Kathleen M

    2009-02-01

    Cattle are a known reservoir of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli. The prevalence and stability of Shiga toxin and/or Shiga toxin genes among native wild ungulates in Idaho were investigated. The frequency of both Shiga genes and toxin was similar to that reported for Idaho cattle ( approximately 19%).

  13. Sugar inhibits the production of the toxins that trigger clostridial gas gangrene.

    PubMed

    Méndez, M B; Goñi, A; Ramirez, W; Grau, R R

    2012-01-01

    Histotoxic strains of Clostridium perfringens cause human gas gangrene, a devastating infection during which potent tissue-degrading toxins are produced and secreted. Although this pathogen only grows in anaerobic-nutrient-rich habitats such as deep wounds, very little is known regarding how nutritional signals influence gas gangrene-related toxin production. We hypothesize that sugars, which have been used throughout history to prevent wound infection, may represent a nutritional signal against gas gangrene development. Here we demonstrate, for the first time, that sugars (sucrose, glucose) inhibited the production of the main protein toxins, PLC (alpha-toxin) and PFO (theta-toxin), responsible for the onset and progression of gas gangrene. Transcription analysis experiments using plc-gusA and pfoA-gusA reporter fusions as well as RT-PCR analysis of mRNA transcripts confirmed that sugar represses plc and pfoA expression. In contrast an isogenic C. perfringens strain that is defective in CcpA, the master transcription factor involved in carbon catabolite response, was completely resistant to the sugar-mediated inhibition of PLC and PFO toxin production. Furthermore, the production of PLC and PFO toxins in the ccpA mutant strain was several-fold higher than the toxin production found in the wild type strain. Therefore, CcpA is the primary or unique regulatory protein responsible for the carbon catabolite (sugar) repression of toxin production of this pathogen. The present results are analyzed in the context of the role of CcpA for the development and aggressiveness of clostridial gas gangrene and the well-known, although poorly understood, anti-infective and wound healing effects of sugars and related substances. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. 9 CFR 121.3 - VS select agents and toxins.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... genetically modified. (d) VS select agents or toxins that meet any of the following criteria are excluded from... AGRICULTURE VIRUSES, SERUMS, TOXINS, AND ANALOGOUS PRODUCTS; ORGANISMS AND VECTORS POSSESSION, USE, AND... recombinant organisms: (1) Nucleic acids that can produce infectious forms of any of the select agent viruses...

  15. Monitoring of DSP toxins in small-sized plankton fraction of seawater collected in Mutsu Bay, Japan, by ELISA method: relation with toxin contamination of scallop.

    PubMed

    Imai, Ichiro; Sugioka, Hikaru; Nishitani, Goh; Mitsuya, Tadashi; Hamano, Yonekazu

    2003-01-01

    Monitorings were conducted on DSP toxins in mid-gut gland of scallop (mouse assay), cell numbers of toxic dinoflagellate species of Dinophysis, and diarrhetic shellfish poisoning (DSP) toxins in small-sized (0.7-5 microm) plankton fraction of seawater collected from surface (0 m) and 20 m depth at a station in Mutsu Bay, Aomori Prefecture, Japan, in 2000. A specific enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was employed for the analysis of DSP toxins in small-sized plankton fraction using a mouse monoclonal anti-okadaic acid antibody which recognizes okadaic acid, dinophysistoxin-1, and dinophysistoxin-3. DSP toxins were detected twice in the mid-gut gland of scallops at 1.1-2.3 MU (mouse units) g(-1) on 26 June and at 0.6-1.2 MU g(-1) on 3 July, respectively. Relatively high cell densities of D. fortii were observed on 26 June and 11 September, and may only contribute to the bivalve toxicity during late June to early July. D. acuminata did not appear to be responsible for the toxicity of scallops in Mutsu Bay in 2000. ELISA monitoring of small-sized plankton fraction in seawater could detect DSP toxins two weeks before the detection of the toxin in scallops, and could do so two weeks after the loss of the bivalve toxicity by mouse assay. On 17 July, toxic D. fortii was detected at only small number, <10 cells l(-1), but DSP toxins were detected by the ELISA assay, suggesting a presence of other toxic small-sized plankton in seawater. For the purpose of reducing negative impacts of DSP occurrences, monitorings have been carried out hitherto on DSP toxins of bivalve tissues by mouse assay and on cell densities of "toxic" species of Dinophysis. Here we propose a usefulness of ELISA monitoring of plankton toxicity, especially in small-sized fraction, which are possible foods of mixotrophic Dinophysis, as a practical tool for detecting and predicting DSPs in coastal areas of fisheries grounds of bivalve aquaculture.

  16. Shiga Toxins, and the Genes Encoding Them, in Fecal Samples from Native Idaho Ungulates▿

    PubMed Central

    Gilbreath, Jeremy J.; Shields, Malcolm S.; Smith, Rebekah L.; Farrell, Larry D.; Sheridan, Peter P.; Spiegel, Kathleen M.

    2009-01-01

    Cattle are a known reservoir of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli. The prevalence and stability of Shiga toxin and/or Shiga toxin genes among native wild ungulates in Idaho were investigated. The frequency of both Shiga genes and toxin was similar to that reported for Idaho cattle (∼19%). PMID:19060170

  17. Peptides and genes coding for scorpion toxins that affect ion-channels.

    PubMed

    Possani, L D; Merino, E; Corona, M; Bolivar, F; Becerril, B

    2000-01-01

    Most scorpion toxins are ligand peptides that recognize and bind to integral membrane proteins known as ion-channels. To date there are at least 202 distinct sequences described, obtained from 30 different species of scorpions, 27 from the family Buthidae and three from the family Scorpionidae. Toxins that recognize potassium and chloride channels are usually from 29 to 41 amino acids long, stabilized by three or four disulfide bridges, whereas those that recognize sodium channels are longer, 60 to 76 amino acid residues, compacted by four disulfide bridges. Toxins specific for calcium channels are scarcely known and have variable amino acid lengths. The entire repertoire of toxins, independently of their specificity, was analyzed together by computational programs and a phylogenetic tree was built showing two separate branches. The K(+) and Cl(-) channel specific toxins are clustered into 14 subfamilies, whereas those of Na(+) and Ca(2+) specific toxins comprise at least 12 subfamilies. There are clear similarities among them, both in terms of primary sequence and the main three-dimensional folding pattern. A dense core formed by a short alpha helix segment and several antiparallel beta-sheet stretches, maintained by disulfide pairing, seems to be a common structural feature present in all toxins. The physiological function of these peptides is manifested by a blockage of ion passage through the channels or by a modification of the gating mechanism that controls opening and closing of the ion pore.

  18. Cholera toxin can catalyze ADP-ribosylation of cytoskeletal proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Kaslow, H.R.; Groppi, V.E.; Abood, M.E.

    1981-11-01

    Cholera toxin catalyzes transfer of radiolabel from (/sup 32/P)NAD/sup +/ to several peptides in particulate preparations of human foreskin fibroblasts. Resolution of these peptides by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis allowed identification of two peptides of M/sub r/ = 42,000 and 52,000 as peptide subunits of a regulatory component of adenylate cyclase. The radiolabeling of another group of peptides (M/sub r/ = 50,000 to 65,000) suggested that cholera toxin could catalyze ADP-ribosylation of cytoskeletal proteins. This suggestion was confirmed by showing that incubation with cholera toxin and (/sup 32/P)NAD/sup +/ caused radiolabeling of purified microtubule and intermediate filament proteins.

  19. Tracing the metabolism of HT-2 toxin and T-2 toxin in barley by isotope-assisted untargeted screening and quantitative LC-HRMS analysis

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    An extensive study of the metabolism of the type-A trichothecene mycotoxins HT-2 toxin and T-2 toxin in barley using liquid chromatography coupled to high resolution mass spectrometry (LC-HRMS) is reported. A recently developed untargeted approach based on stable isotopic labelling, LC-Orbitrap-MS a...

  20. The role of exoproteases in governing intraneuronal metabolism of botulinum toxin.

    PubMed

    Simpson, Lance L; Maksymowych, Andrew B; Kouguchi, Hirokazu; Dubois, Garrett; Bora, Roop S; Joshi, Suresh

    2005-04-01

    Botulinum toxin type A has a long duration of action, and thus it can block transmitter release for several weeks to several months. However, little is known about the precise mechanism that accounts for termination of toxin action. Therefore, experiments were done to gauge the effects of aminopeptidases and carboxypeptidases on the structure and function of the toxin. Exoproteases were added to the holotoxin, the native light chain, and a recombinant light chain. Treated toxin and light chain were examined for their effects on neuromuscular transmission and on isolated substrate. The data showed that aminopeptidase attack did not alter the N-terminus of the toxin/light chain, nor did it produce losses in biological activity. Carboxypeptidase attack did alter the C-terminus of the light chain, but not sufficiently to alter biological activity. The data suggest that the tertiary structure of the light chain confers upon the molecule substantial resistance to exoproteases.

  1. Interaction of the alpha-toxin of Staphylococcus aureus with the liposome membrane.

    PubMed

    Ikigai, H; Nakae, T

    1987-02-15

    When the liposome membrane is exposed to the alpha-toxin of Staphylococcus aureus, fluorescence of the tryptophan residue(s) of the toxin molecule increases concomitantly with the degree of toxin-hexamer formation (Ikigai, H., and Nakae, T. (1985) Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 130, 175-181). In the present study, the toxin-membrane interaction was distinguished from the hexamer formation by the fluorescence energy transfer from the tryptophan residue(s) of the toxin molecule to the dansylated phosphatidylethanolamine in phosphatidylcholine liposome. Measurement of these two parameters yielded the following results. The effect of the toxin concentration and phospholipid concentration on these two parameters showed first order kinetics. The effect of liposome size on the energy transfer and the fluorescence increment of the tryptophan residue(s) was only detectable in small liposomes. Under moderately acidic or basic conditions, the fluorescence energy transfer always preceded the fluorescence increment of the tryptophan residue(s). The fluorescence increment at 336 nm at temperatures below 20 degrees C showed a latent period, whereas the fluorescence energy transfer did not. These results were thought to indicate that when alpha-toxin damages the target membrane, the molecule interacts with the membrane first, and then undergoes oligomerization within the membrane.

  2. Saccharomyces boulardii protease inhibits Clostridium difficile toxin A effects in the rat ileum.

    PubMed Central

    Castagliuolo, I; LaMont, J T; Nikulasson, S T; Pothoulakis, C

    1996-01-01

    Saccharomyces boulardii, a nonpathogenic yeast, is effective in treating some patients with Clostridium difficile diarrhea and colitis. We have previously reported that S. boulardii inhibits rat ileal secretion in response to C. difficile toxin A possibly by releasing a protease that digests the intestinal receptor for this toxin (C. Pothoulakis, C. P. Kelly, M. A. Joshi, N. Gao, C. J. O'Keane, I. Castagliuolo, and J. T. LaMont, Gastroenterology 104: 1108-1115, 1993). The aim of this study was to purify and characterize this protease. S. boulardii protease was partially purified by gel filtration on Sephadex G-50 and octyl-Sepharose. The effect of S. boulardii protease on rat ileal secretion, epithelial permeability, and morphology in response to toxin A was examined in rat ileal loops in vivo. Sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis of the purified S. boulardii protease revealed a major band at 54 kDa. Pretreatment of rat ileal brush border (BB) membranes with partially purified protease reduced specific toxin A receptor binding (by 26%). Partially purified protease digested the toxin A molecule and significantly reduced its binding to BB membranes in vitro (by 42%). Preincubation of toxin A with S. boulardii protease inhibited ileal secretion (46% inhibition, P < 0.01), mannitol permeability (74% inhibition, P < 0.01), and histologic damage caused by toxin A. Thus, S. boulardii protease inhibits the intestinal effects of C. difficile toxin A by proteolysis of the toxin and inhibition of toxin A binding to its BB receptor. Our results may be relevant to the mechanism by which S. boulardii exerts its protective effects in C. difficile infection in humans. PMID:8945570

  3. Toxin-Induced Experimental Models of Learning and Memory Impairment

    PubMed Central

    More, Sandeep Vasant; Kumar, Hemant; Cho, Duk-Yeon; Yun, Yo-Sep; Choi, Dong-Kug

    2016-01-01

    Animal models for learning and memory have significantly contributed to novel strategies for drug development and hence are an imperative part in the assessment of therapeutics. Learning and memory involve different stages including acquisition, consolidation, and retrieval and each stage can be characterized using specific toxin. Recent studies have postulated the molecular basis of these processes and have also demonstrated many signaling molecules that are involved in several stages of memory. Most insights into learning and memory impairment and to develop a novel compound stems from the investigations performed in experimental models, especially those produced by neurotoxins models. Several toxins have been utilized based on their mechanism of action for learning and memory impairment such as scopolamine, streptozotocin, quinolinic acid, and domoic acid. Further, some toxins like 6-hydroxy dopamine (6-OHDA), 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) and amyloid-β are known to cause specific learning and memory impairment which imitate the disease pathology of Parkinson’s disease dementia and Alzheimer’s disease dementia. Apart from these toxins, several other toxins come under a miscellaneous category like an environmental pollutant, snake venoms, botulinum, and lipopolysaccharide. This review will focus on the various classes of neurotoxin models for learning and memory impairment with their specific mechanism of action that could assist the process of drug discovery and development for dementia and cognitive disorders. PMID:27598124

  4. Toxin-Induced Experimental Models of Learning and Memory Impairment.

    PubMed

    More, Sandeep Vasant; Kumar, Hemant; Cho, Duk-Yeon; Yun, Yo-Sep; Choi, Dong-Kug

    2016-09-01

    Animal models for learning and memory have significantly contributed to novel strategies for drug development and hence are an imperative part in the assessment of therapeutics. Learning and memory involve different stages including acquisition, consolidation, and retrieval and each stage can be characterized using specific toxin. Recent studies have postulated the molecular basis of these processes and have also demonstrated many signaling molecules that are involved in several stages of memory. Most insights into learning and memory impairment and to develop a novel compound stems from the investigations performed in experimental models, especially those produced by neurotoxins models. Several toxins have been utilized based on their mechanism of action for learning and memory impairment such as scopolamine, streptozotocin, quinolinic acid, and domoic acid. Further, some toxins like 6-hydroxy dopamine (6-OHDA), 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) and amyloid-β are known to cause specific learning and memory impairment which imitate the disease pathology of Parkinson's disease dementia and Alzheimer's disease dementia. Apart from these toxins, several other toxins come under a miscellaneous category like an environmental pollutant, snake venoms, botulinum, and lipopolysaccharide. This review will focus on the various classes of neurotoxin models for learning and memory impairment with their specific mechanism of action that could assist the process of drug discovery and development for dementia and cognitive disorders.

  5. Influence of Selenium on the Production of T-2 Toxin by Fusarium poae.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Bolun; Zhang, Yan; Tong, Bei; Yin, Hong

    2017-07-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of selenium on the production of T-2 toxin by a Fusarium poae strain cultured in a synthetic medium containing different concentrations of selenium. The T-2 toxin contents in fermentative products were evaluated by a high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). The results showed that the production of T-2 toxin was correlated with the concentration of selenium added to the medium. In all three treatments, the addition of 1 mg/L selenium to the medium resulted in a lower toxin yield than the control (0 mg/L); the yield of the toxin began to increase when selenium concentration was 10 mg/L, while it decreased again at 20 mg/L. In summary, T-2 toxin yield in the fermentative product was affected by the addition of selenium to the medium, and a selenium concentration of 20 mg/L produced the maximum inhibitory effect of T-2 toxin yield in the fermentative product of F. poae.

  6. Electrophysiological response of chicken's jejunal epithelium to increasing levels of T-2 toxin.

    PubMed

    Yunus, Agha Waqar; Kröger, Susan; Tichy, Alexander; Zentek, Jürgen; Böhm, Josef

    2013-02-01

    The present investigations were conducted to test the effects of T-2 toxin on electrophysiological variables of jejunal epithelium of chicken. Jejunal segments of broilers were monitored in Ussing chambers in the presence of T-2 toxin at the levels of 0 (negative control), 0 (methanol/vehicle control), 0.1, 1, 5, and 10 μg/ml of buffer. T-2 toxin did not affect basal values of short circuit current (I(sc)), transmural potential difference, or tissue conductivity in the jejunal epithelium. T-2 toxin also did not statistically affect glucose-induced electrophysiological variables during the first 3 min of glucose induction. Compared to the vehicle control, the ouabain-sensitive I(sc) was negatively affected (P = 0.008) only under 5 μg of T-2 toxin/ml. Increasing levels of T-2 toxin negatively affected the ouabain-sensitive I(sc) in a cubic (P = 0.007) fashion. These data indicate that acute exposure to moderate levels of T-2 toxin may progressively impair the cation gradient across the jejunal epithelium.

  7. Pyridostigmine for reversal of severe sequelae from botulinum toxin injection.

    PubMed

    Young, David L; Halstead, Lucinda A

    2014-11-01

    Botulinum toxin is used to treat a wide range of dystonias in the head and neck. Occasionally, patients receiving laryngeal botulinum toxin experience severe dysphagia, dyspnea, or even distant and autonomic symptoms. Rarely, these patients may require hospitalization with possible intubation and placement of nasogastric tubes. Botulinum antitoxin is not readily available and ineffective once symptoms have progressed, so patients must wait until the toxin wears off over weeks to months. Pyridostigmine prevents the breakdown of acetylcholine at the neuromuscular junction, thus making more neurotransmitter available for the muscles. A retrospective case study of patients receiving botulinum toxin for dystonia in the head and neck from 1998 to 2012 who experienced adverse effects that were successfully treated with pyridostigmine. Twenty cases were selected and reviewed to demonstrate how pyridostigmine was used to modulate severe dysphagia, breathiness, dyspnea, and some distant/autonomic symptoms. Pyridostigmine was well tolerated and resulted in significant symptom improvement. Only one significant adverse effect, bradycardia, occurred in a patient with severe cardiac disease. Given the safety and efficacy of this medication, pyridostigmine should be considered to modulate severe sequelae of botulinum toxin in select patients when conservative management is deemed insufficient. Also, physicians should be aware that patient complaints of symptoms at distant sites and temporally delayed from the injection may be a result of the botulinum toxin and relieved with pyridostigmine. Copyright © 2014 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Glucosylation and Other Biotransformations of T-2 Toxin by Yeasts of the Trichomonascus Clade

    PubMed Central

    Price, Neil P. J.; Kurtzman, Cletus P.

    2012-01-01

    Trichothecenes are sesquiterpenoid toxins produced by Fusarium species. Since these mycotoxins are very stable, there is interest in microbial transformations that can remove toxins from contaminated grain or cereal products. Twenty-three yeast species assigned to the Trichomonascus clade (Saccharomycotina, Ascomycota), including four Trichomonascus species and 19 anamorphic species presently classified in Blastobotrys, were tested for their ability to convert the trichothecene T-2 toxin to less-toxic products. These species gave three types of biotransformations: acetylation to 3-acetyl T-2 toxin, glycosylation to T-2 toxin 3-glucoside, and removal of the isovaleryl group to form neosolaniol. Some species gave more than one type of biotransformation. Three Blastobotrys species converted T-2 toxin into T-2 toxin 3-glucoside, a compound that has been identified as a masked mycotoxin in Fusarium-infected grain. This is the first report of a microbial whole-cell method for producing trichothecene glycosides, and the potential large-scale availability of T-2 toxin 3-glucoside will facilitate toxicity testing and development of methods for detection of this compound in agricultural and other products. PMID:23042183

  9. Selection of a Clostridium perfringens type D epsilon toxin producer via dot-blot test.

    PubMed

    Gonçalves, Luciana A; Lobato, Zélia I P; Silva, Rodrigo O S; Salvarani, Felipe M; Pires, Prhiscylla S; Assis, Ronnie A; Lobato, Francisco C F

    2009-11-01

    Clostridium perfringens type D produces enterotoxemia, an enteric disease in ruminants, also known as pulpy kidney disease. Caused by epsilon toxin, enterotoxemia is a major exotoxin produced by this microorganism. Epsilon toxin is also the main component of vaccines against this enteric disorder. In this study, a standardized dot-blot was used to choose strains of C. perfringens type D that are producers of epsilon toxin. Clones producing epsilon toxin were chosen by limiting dilution; after three passages, lethal minimum dose titers were determined by soroneutralization test in mice. These clones produced epsilon toxin 240 times more concentrated than the original strain. The presence of the epsilon toxin gene (etx) was verified by polymerase chain reaction. All clones were positive, including those determined to be negative by dot-blot tests, suggesting that mechanisms in addition to the presence of the etx gene can influence toxin production. The dot-blot test was efficient for the selection of toxigenic colonies of C. perfringens type D and demonstrated that homogeneous populations selected from toxigenic cultures produce higher titers of epsilon toxin.

  10. Impact of CDT Toxin on Human Diseases.

    PubMed

    Faïs, Tiphanie; Delmas, Julien; Serres, Arnaud; Bonnet, Richard; Dalmasso, Guillaume

    2016-07-15

    Cytolethal distending toxin (CDT) is found in Gram-negative bacteria, especially in certain Proteobacteria such as the Pasteurellaceae family, including Haemophilus ducreyi and Aggregatibacter (Actinobacillus) actinomycetemcomitans, in the Enterobacteriaceae family and the Campylobacterales order, including the Campylobacter and Helicobacter species. In vitro and in vivo studies have clearly shown that this toxin has a strong effect on cellular physiology (inflammation, immune response modulation, tissue damage). Some works even suggest a potential involvement of CDT in cancers. In this review, we will discuss these different aspects.

  11. Changes in protease activity and Cry3Aa toxin binding in the Colorado potato beetle: implications for insect resistance to Bacillus thuringiensis toxins

    Treesearch

    Olga Loseva; Mohamed Ibrahim; Mehmet Candas; C. Noah Koller; Leah S. Bauer; Lee A. Jr. Bulla

    2002-01-01

    Widespread commercial use of Bacillus thuringiensis Cry toxins to control pest insects has increased the likelihood for development of insect resistance to this entomopathogen. In this study, we investigated protease activity profiles and toxin-binding capacities in the midgut of a strain of Colorado potato beetle (CPB) that has developed resistance...

  12. An imaging surface plasmon resonance biosensor assay for the detection of T-2 toxin and masked T-2 toxin-3-glucoside in wheat

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    A sensitive, rapid, and reproducible imaging surface plasmon resonance (iSPR) biosensor assay was developed to detect T-2 toxin and T-2 toxin-3-glucoside (T2-G) in wheat. In this competitive assay, an amplification strategy was used after conjugating a secondary antibody (Ab2) with gold nanoparticle...

  13. Novel toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 amino acids required for biological activity.

    PubMed

    Brosnahan, Amanda J; Schaefers, Matthew M; Amundson, William H; Mantz, Mary J; Squier, Christopher A; Peterson, Marnie L; Schlievert, Patrick M

    2008-12-09

    Superantigens interact with T lymphocytes and macrophages to cause T lymphocyte proliferation and overwhelming cytokine production, which lead to toxic shock syndrome. Staphylococcus aureus superantigen toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 is a major cause of menstrual toxic shock syndrome. In general, superantigen-secreting S. aureus remains localized at the vaginal surface, and the superantigen must therefore penetrate the vaginal mucosa to interact with underlying immune cells to cause toxic shock syndrome. A dodecapeptide region (toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 amino acids F119-D130), relatively conserved among superantigens, has been implicated in superantigen penetration of the epithelium. The purpose of this study was to determine amino acids within this dodecapeptide region that are required for interaction with vaginal epithelium. Alanine mutations were constructed in S. aureus toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 amino acids D120 to D130. All mutants maintained superantigenicity, and selected mutants were lethal when given intravenously to rabbits. Toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 induces interleukin-8 from immortalized human vaginal epithelial cells; however, three toxin mutants (S127A, T128A, and D130A) induced low levels of interleukin-8 compared to wild type toxin. When carboxy-terminal mutants (S127A to D130A) were administered vaginally to rabbits, D130A was nonlethal, while S127A and T128A demonstrated delayed lethality compared to wild type toxin. In a porcine ex vivo permeability model, mutant D130A penetrated the vaginal mucosa more quickly than wild type toxin. Toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 residue D130 may contribute to binding an epithelial receptor, which allows it to penetrate the vaginal mucosa, induce interleukin-8, and cause toxic shock syndrome.

  14. Characterization of Clostridium perfringens iota-toxin genes and expression in Escherichia coli.

    PubMed Central

    Perelle, S; Gibert, M; Boquet, P; Popoff, M R

    1993-01-01

    The iota toxin which is produced by Clostridium perfringens type E, is a binary toxin consisting of two independent polypeptides: Ia, which is an ADP-ribosyltransferase, and Ib, which is involved in the binding and internalization of the toxin into the cell. Two degenerate oligonucleotide probes deduced from partial amino acid sequence of each component of C. spiroforme toxin, which is closely related to the iota toxin, were used to clone three overlapping DNA fragments containing the iota-toxin genes from C. perfringens type E plasmid DNA. Two genes, in the same orientation, coding for Ia (387 amino acids) and Ib (875 amino acids) and separated by 243 noncoding nucleotides were identified. A predicted signal peptide was found for each component, and the secreted Ib displays two domains, the propeptide (172 amino acids) and the mature protein (664 amino acids). The Ia gene has been expressed in Escherichia coli and C. perfringens, under the control of its own promoter. The recombinant polypeptide obtained was recognized by Ia antibodies and ADP-ribosylated actin. The expression of the Ib gene was obtained in E. coli harboring a recombinant plasmid encompassing the putative promoter upstream of the Ia gene and the Ia and Ib genes. Two residues which have been found to be involved in the NAD+ binding site of diphtheria and pseudomonas toxins are conserved in the predicted Ia sequence (Glu-14 and Trp-19). The predicted amino acid Ib sequence shows 33.9% identity with and 54.4% similarity to the protective antigen of the anthrax toxin complex. In particular, the central region of Ib, which contains a predicted transmembrane segment (Leu-292 to Ser-308), presents 45% identity with the corresponding protective antigen sequence which is involved in the translocation of the toxin across the cell membrane. Images PMID:8225592

  15. Characterization of Clostridium perfringens iota-toxin genes and expression in Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Perelle, S; Gibert, M; Boquet, P; Popoff, M R

    1993-12-01

    The iota toxin which is produced by Clostridium perfringens type E, is a binary toxin consisting of two independent polypeptides: Ia, which is an ADP-ribosyltransferase, and Ib, which is involved in the binding and internalization of the toxin into the cell. Two degenerate oligonucleotide probes deduced from partial amino acid sequence of each component of C. spiroforme toxin, which is closely related to the iota toxin, were used to clone three overlapping DNA fragments containing the iota-toxin genes from C. perfringens type E plasmid DNA. Two genes, in the same orientation, coding for Ia (387 amino acids) and Ib (875 amino acids) and separated by 243 noncoding nucleotides were identified. A predicted signal peptide was found for each component, and the secreted Ib displays two domains, the propeptide (172 amino acids) and the mature protein (664 amino acids). The Ia gene has been expressed in Escherichia coli and C. perfringens, under the control of its own promoter. The recombinant polypeptide obtained was recognized by Ia antibodies and ADP-ribosylated actin. The expression of the Ib gene was obtained in E. coli harboring a recombinant plasmid encompassing the putative promoter upstream of the Ia gene and the Ia and Ib genes. Two residues which have been found to be involved in the NAD+ binding site of diphtheria and pseudomonas toxins are conserved in the predicted Ia sequence (Glu-14 and Trp-19). The predicted amino acid Ib sequence shows 33.9% identity with and 54.4% similarity to the protective antigen of the anthrax toxin complex. In particular, the central region of Ib, which contains a predicted transmembrane segment (Leu-292 to Ser-308), presents 45% identity with the corresponding protective antigen sequence which is involved in the translocation of the toxin across the cell membrane.

  16. Identification of the channel-forming domain of Clostridium perfringens Epsilon-toxin (ETX).

    PubMed

    Knapp, Oliver; Maier, Elke; Benz, Roland; Geny, Blandine; Popoff, Michel R

    2009-12-01

    Epsilon-toxin (ETX) is a potent toxin produced by Clostridium perfringens strains B and D. The bacteria are important pathogens in domestic animals and cause edema mediated by ETX. This toxin acts most likely by heptamer formation and rapid permeabilization of target cell membranes for monovalent anions and cations followed by a later entry of calcium. In this study, we compared the primary structure of ETX with that of the channel-forming stretches of a variety of binding components of A-B-types of toxins such as Anthrax protective antigen (PA), C2II of C2-toxin and Ib of Iota-toxin and found a remarkable homology to amino acids 151-180 of ETX. Site-directed mutagenesis of amino acids within the putative channel-forming domain resulted in changes of cytotoxicity and effects on channel characteristics in lipid bilayer experiments including changes of selectivity and partial channel block by methanethiosulfonate (MTS) reagents and antibodies against His(6)-tags from the trans-side of the lipid bilayer membranes.

  17. Retargeting the Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin to the neuronal cytosol.

    PubMed

    Pavlik, Benjamin J; Hruska, Elizabeth J; Van Cott, Kevin E; Blum, Paul H

    2016-03-30

    Many biological toxins are known to attack specific cell types, delivering their enzymatic payloads to the cytosol. This process can be manipulated by molecular engineering of chimeric toxins. Using toxins with naturally unlinked components as a starting point is advantageous because it allows for the development of payloads separately from the binding/translocation components. Here the Clostridium botulinum C2 binding/translocation domain was retargeted to neural cell populations by deleting its non-specific binding domain and replacing it with a C. botulinum neurotoxin binding domain. This fusion protein was used to deliver fluorescently labeled payloads to Neuro-2a cells. Intracellular delivery was quantified by flow cytometry and found to be dependent on artificial enrichment of cells with the polysialoganglioside receptor GT1b. Visualization by confocal microscopy showed a dissociation of payloads from the early endosome indicating translocation of the chimeric toxin. The natural Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin was then delivered to human glioblastoma A172 and synchronized HeLa cells. In the presence of the fusion protein, native cytosolic enzymatic activity of the enzyme was observed and found to be GT1b-dependent. This retargeted toxin may enable delivery of therapeutics to peripheral neurons and be of use in addressing experimental questions about neural physiology.

  18. A bioanalytical platform for simultaneous detection and quantification of biological toxins.

    PubMed

    Weingart, Oliver G; Gao, Hui; Crevoisier, François; Heitger, Friedrich; Avondet, Marc-André; Sigrist, Hans

    2012-01-01

    Prevalent incidents support the notion that toxins, produced by bacteria, fungi, plants or animals are increasingly responsible for food poisoning or intoxication. Owing to their high toxicity some toxins are also regarded as potential biological warfare agents. Accordingly, control, detection and neutralization of toxic substances are a considerable economic burden to food safety, health care and military biodefense. The present contribution describes a new versatile instrument and related procedures for array-based simultaneous detection of bacterial and plant toxins using a bioanalytical platform which combines the specificity of covalently immobilized capture probes with a dedicated instrumentation and immuno-based microarray analytics. The bioanalytical platform consists of a microstructured polymer slide serving both as support of printed arrays and as incubation chamber. The platform further includes an easy-to-operate instrument for simultaneous slide processing at selectable assay temperature. Cy5 coupled streptavidin is used as unifying fluorescent tracer. Fluorescence image analysis and signal quantitation allow determination of the toxin's identity and concentration. The system's performance has been investigated by immunological detection of Botulinum Neurotoxin type A (BoNT/A), Staphylococcal enterotoxin B (SEB), and the plant toxin ricin. Toxins were detectable at levels as low as 0.5-1 ng · mL(-1) in buffer or in raw milk.

  19. Retargeting the Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin to the neuronal cytosol

    PubMed Central

    Pavlik, Benjamin J.; Hruska, Elizabeth J.; Van Cott, Kevin E.; Blum, Paul H.

    2016-01-01

    Many biological toxins are known to attack specific cell types, delivering their enzymatic payloads to the cytosol. This process can be manipulated by molecular engineering of chimeric toxins. Using toxins with naturally unlinked components as a starting point is advantageous because it allows for the development of payloads separately from the binding/translocation components. Here the Clostridium botulinum C2 binding/translocation domain was retargeted to neural cell populations by deleting its non-specific binding domain and replacing it with a C. botulinum neurotoxin binding domain. This fusion protein was used to deliver fluorescently labeled payloads to Neuro-2a cells. Intracellular delivery was quantified by flow cytometry and found to be dependent on artificial enrichment of cells with the polysialoganglioside receptor GT1b. Visualization by confocal microscopy showed a dissociation of payloads from the early endosome indicating translocation of the chimeric toxin. The natural Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin was then delivered to human glioblastoma A172 and synchronized HeLa cells. In the presence of the fusion protein, native cytosolic enzymatic activity of the enzyme was observed and found to be GT1b-dependent. This retargeted toxin may enable delivery of therapeutics to peripheral neurons and be of use in addressing experimental questions about neural physiology. PMID:27025362

  20. Mechanisms of Action and Cell Death Associated with Clostridium perfringens Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Navarro, Mauricio A.; Uzal, Francisco A.

    2018-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens uses its large arsenal of protein toxins to produce histotoxic, neurologic and intestinal infections in humans and animals. The major toxins involved in diseases are alpha (CPA), beta (CPB), epsilon (ETX), iota (ITX), enterotoxin (CPE), and necrotic B-like (NetB) toxins. CPA is the main virulence factor involved in gas gangrene in humans, whereas its role in animal diseases is limited and controversial. CPB is responsible for necrotizing enteritis and enterotoxemia, mostly in neonatal individuals of many animal species, including humans. ETX is the main toxin involved in enterotoxemia of sheep and goats. ITX has been implicated in cases of enteritis in rabbits and other animal species; however, its specific role in causing disease has not been proved. CPE is responsible for human food-poisoning and non-foodborne C. perfringens-mediated diarrhea. NetB is the cause of necrotic enteritis in chickens. In most cases, host–toxin interaction starts on the plasma membrane of target cells via specific receptors, resulting in the activation of intracellular pathways with a variety of effects, commonly including cell death. In general, the molecular mechanisms of cell death associated with C. perfringens toxins involve features of apoptosis, necrosis and/or necroptosis. PMID:29786671

  1. Genotoxicity and potential carcinogenicity of cyanobacterial toxins - a review.

    PubMed

    Zegura, Bojana; Straser, Alja; Filipič, Metka

    2011-01-01

    The occurrence of cyanobacterial blooms has increased significantly in many regions of the world in the last century due to water eutrophication. These blooms are hazardous to humans, animals, and plants due to the production of cyanotoxins, which can be classified in five different groups: hepatotoxins, neurotoxins, cytotoxins, dermatotoxins, and irritant toxins (lipopolysaccharides). There is evidence that certain cyanobacterial toxins are genotoxic and carcinogenic; however, the mechanisms of their potential carcinogenicity are not well understood. The most frequently occurring and widespread cyanotoxins in brackish and freshwater blooms are the cyclic heptapeptides, i.e., microcystins (MCs), and the pentapeptides, i.e., nodularins (NODs). The main mechanism associated with potential carcinogenic activity of MCs and NOD is the inhibition of protein phosphatases, which leads to the hyperphosphorylation of cellular proteins, which is considered to be associated with their tumor-promoting activity. Apart from this, MCs and NOD induce increased formation of reactive oxygen species and, consequently, oxidative DNA damage. There is also evidence that MCs and NOD induce micronuclei, and NOD was shown to have aneugenic activity. Both cyanotoxins interfere with DNA damage repair pathways, which, along with DNA damage, is an important factor involved in the carcinogenicity of these agents. Furthermore, these toxins increase the expression of TNF-α and early-response genes, including proto-oncogenes, genes involved in the response to DNA damage, cell cycle arrest, and apoptosis. Rodent studies indicate that MCs and NOD are tumor promotors, whereas NOD is thought to have also tumor-initiating activity. Another cyanobacterial toxin, cylindrospermopsin (CYN), which has been neglected for a long time, is lately being increasingly found in the freshwater environment. The principal mechanism of its toxicity is the irreversible inhibition of protein synthesis. It is pro

  2. Detection of Staphylococcus aureus Delta-Toxin Production by Whole-Cell MALDI-TOF Mass Spectrometry

    PubMed Central

    Gagnaire, Julie; Dauwalder, Olivier; Boisset, Sandrine; Khau, David; Freydière, Anne-Marie; Ader, Florence; Bes, Michèle; Lina, Gerard; Tristan, Anne; Reverdy, Marie-Elisabeth; Marchand, Adrienne; Geissmann, Thomas; Benito, Yvonne; Durand, Géraldine; Charrier, Jean-Philippe; Etienne, Jerome; Welker, Martin; Van Belkum, Alex; Vandenesch, François

    2012-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to detect the Staphylococcus aureus delta-toxin using Whole-Cell (WC) Matrix Assisted Laser Desorption Ionization - Time-of-Flight (MALDI-TOF) mass spectrometry (MS), correlate delta-toxin expression with accessory gene regulator (agr) status, and assess the prevalence of agr deficiency in clinical isolates with and without resistance to methicillin and glycopeptides. The position of the delta-toxin peak in the mass spectrum was identified using purified delta-toxin and isogenic wild type and mutant strains for agr-rnaIII, which encodes delta-toxin. Correlation between delta-toxin production and agr RNAIII expression was assessed by northern blotting. A series of 168 consecutive clinical isolates and 23 unrelated glycopeptide-intermediate S. aureus strains (GISA/heterogeneous GISA) were then tested by WC-MALDI-TOF MS. The delta-toxin peak was detected at 3005±5 Thomson, as expected for the naturally formylated delta toxin, or at 3035±5 Thomson for its G10S variant. Multivariate analysis showed that chronicity of S. aureus infection and glycopeptide resistance were significantly associated with delta-toxin deficiency (p = 0.048; CI 95%: 1.01–10.24; p = 0.023; CI 95%: 1.20–12.76, respectively). In conclusion, the S. aureus delta-toxin was identified in the WC-MALDI-TOF MS spectrum generated during routine identification procedures. Consequently, agr status can potentially predict infectious complications and rationalise application of novel virulence factor-based therapies. PMID:22792394

  3. Diversification of Type VI Secretion System Toxins Reveals Ancient Antagonism among Bee Gut Microbes.

    PubMed

    Steele, Margaret I; Kwong, Waldan K; Whiteley, Marvin; Moran, Nancy A

    2017-12-12

    Microbial communities are shaped by interactions among their constituent members. Some Gram-negative bacteria employ type VI secretion systems (T6SSs) to inject protein toxins into neighboring cells. These interactions have been theorized to affect the composition of host-associated microbiomes, but the role of T6SSs in the evolution of gut communities is not well understood. We report the discovery of two T6SSs and numerous T6SS-associated Rhs toxins within the gut bacteria of honey bees and bumble bees. We sequenced the genomes of 28 strains of Snodgrassella alvi , a characteristic bee gut microbe, and found tremendous variability in their Rhs toxin complements: altogether, these strains appear to encode hundreds of unique toxins. Some toxins are shared with Gilliamella apicola , a coresident gut symbiont, implicating horizontal gene transfer as a source of toxin diversity in the bee gut. We use data from a transposon mutagenesis screen to identify toxins with antibacterial function in the bee gut and validate the function and specificity of a subset of these toxin and immunity genes in Escherichia coli Using transcriptome sequencing, we demonstrate that S. alvi T6SSs and associated toxins are upregulated in the gut environment. We find that S. alvi Rhs loci have a conserved architecture, consistent with the C-terminal displacement model of toxin diversification, with Rhs toxins, toxin fragments, and cognate immunity genes that are expressed and confer strong fitness effects in vivo Our findings of T6SS activity and Rhs toxin diversity suggest that T6SS-mediated competition may be an important driver of coevolution within the bee gut microbiota. IMPORTANCE The structure and composition of host-associated bacterial communities are of broad interest, because these communities affect host health. Bees have a simple, conserved gut microbiota, which provides an opportunity to explore interactions between species that have coevolved within their host over millions of

  4. Radioiodination of scorpion and snake toxins. [/sup 125/I, /sup 127/I

    SciTech Connect

    Rochat, H.; Tessier, M.; Miranda, F.

    1977-10-01

    Several scorpion and snake toxins were radioiodinated using the lactoperoxydase method of (/sup 125/I)iodide oxidation. Two techniques of labeling were set up: Using carrier-free Na/sup 125/I and 5 ..mu..g of toxin, about one iodine atom was incorporated per mole of protein without loss of toxicity. Specific radioactivities about 2,000 Ci/mmol (280 ..mu..Ci/..mu..g) were obtained. The modified toxin, purified by immunoprecipitation with an antiserum prepared against the native toxin, was obtained in a short time (4 hr), with a good yield (50 to 80%), and in a small volume (1 ml). Using Na/sup 127/I traced with Na /sup 125/I and largermore » amounts (200 ..mu..g) of toxin, more than one iodine atom was incorporated per mole of protein without loss of activity. Lower specific radioactivities (1 to 1.5 Ci/mmol) were obtained. The iodinated toxins were purified by gel filtration of the radioiodination mixtures on a column made of two layers of Sephadex (G-15 and G-50). The modified proteins were extensively analyzed by paper electrophoresis and polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Their content of monoiodotyrosine and diiodotyrosine was estimated and, in the case of toxin I of Androctonus australis Hector, it was possible to follow the iodination rate of its three tyrosine residues by automatic Edman degradation. The mode of purification of the iodinated scorpion toxins affects their behavior on molecular sieving on Sephadex G-50 and on electrophoresis on polyacrylamide gel. The results are discussed.« less

  5. Phenol-Soluble Modulin Toxins of Staphylococcus haemolyticus

    PubMed Central

    Da, Fei; Joo, Hwang-Soo; Cheung, Gordon Y. C.; Villaruz, Amer E.; Rohde, Holger; Luo, Xiaoxing; Otto, Michael

    2017-01-01

    Coagulase-negative staphylococci (CoNS) are important nosocomial pathogens and the leading cause of sepsis. The second most frequently implicated species, after Staphylococcus epidermidis, is Staphylococcus haemolyticus. However, we have a significant lack of knowledge about what causes virulence of S. haemolyticus, as virulence factors of this pathogen have remained virtually unexplored. In contrast to the aggressive pathogen Staphylococcus aureus, toxin production has traditionally not been associated with CoNS. Recent findings have suggested that phenol-soluble modulins (PSMs), amphipathic peptide toxins with broad cytolytic activity, are widespread in staphylococci, but there has been no systematic assessment of PSM production in CoNS other than S. epidermidis. Here, we identified, purified, and characterized PSMs of S. haemolyticus. We found three PSMs of the β-type, which correspond to peptides that before were described to have anti-gonococcal activity. We also detected an α-type PSM that has not previously been described. Furthermore, we confirmed that S. haemolyticus does not produce a δ-toxin, as results from genome sequencing had indicated. All four S. haemolyticus PSMs had strong pro-inflammatory activity, promoting neutrophil chemotaxis. Notably, we identified in particular the novel α-type PSM, S. haemolyticus PSMα, as a potent hemolysin and leukocidin. For the first time, our study describes toxins of this important staphylococcal pathogen with the potential to have a significant impact on virulence during blood infection and sepsis. PMID:28596942

  6. Toxins and antimicrobial peptides: interactions with membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schlamadinger, Diana E.; Gable, Jonathan E.; Kim, Judy E.

    2009-08-01

    The innate immunity to pathogenic invasion of organisms in the plant and animal kingdoms relies upon cationic antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) as the first line of defense. In addition to these natural peptide antibiotics, similar cationic peptides, such as the bee venom toxin melittin, act as nonspecific toxins. Molecular details of AMP and peptide toxin action are not known, but the universal function of these peptides to disrupt cell membranes of pathogenic bacteria (AMPs) or a diverse set of eukaryotes and prokaryotes (melittin) is widely accepted. Here, we have utilized spectroscopic techniques to elucidate peptide-membrane interactions of alpha-helical human and mouse AMPs of the cathelicidin family as well as the peptide toxin melittin. The activity of these natural peptides and their engineered analogs was studied on eukaryotic and prokaryotic membrane mimics consisting of <200-nm bilayer vesicles composed of anionic and neutral lipids as well as cholesterol. Vesicle disruption, or peptide potency, was monitored with a sensitive fluorescence leakage assay. Detailed molecular information on peptidemembrane interactions and peptide structure was further gained through vibrational spectroscopy combined with circular dichroism. Finally, steady-state fluorescence experiments yielded insight into the local environment of native or engineered tryptophan residues in melittin and human cathelicidin embedded in bilayer vesicles. Collectively, our results provide clues to the functional structures of the engineered and toxic peptides and may impact the design of synthetic antibiotic peptides that can be used against the growing number of antibiotic-resistant pathogens.

  7. Cationic PAMAM Dendrimers as Pore-Blocking Binary Toxin Inhibitors

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Dendrimers are unique highly branched macromolecules with numerous groundbreaking biomedical applications under development. Here we identified poly(amido amine) (PAMAM) dendrimers as novel blockers for the pore-forming B components of the binary anthrax toxin (PA63) and Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin (C2IIa). These pores are essential for delivery of the enzymatic A components of the internalized toxins from endosomes into the cytosol of target cells. We demonstrate that at low μM concentrations cationic PAMAM dendrimers block PA63 and C2IIa to inhibit channel-mediated transport of the A components, thereby protecting HeLa and Vero cells from intoxication. By channel reconstitution and high-resolution current recording, we show that the PAMAM dendrimers obstruct transmembrane PA63 and C2IIa pores in planar lipid bilayers at nM concentrations. These findings suggest a new potential role for the PAMAM dendrimers as effective polyvalent channel-blocking inhibitors, which can protect human target cells from intoxication with binary toxins from pathogenic bacteria. PMID:24954629

  8. Filaggrin-dependent secretion of sphingomyelinase protects against staphylococcal α-toxin-induced keratinocyte death.

    PubMed

    Brauweiler, Anne M; Bin, Lianghua; Kim, Byung Eui; Oyoshi, Michiko K; Geha, Raif S; Goleva, Elena; Leung, Donald Y M

    2013-02-01

    The skin of patients with atopic dermatitis (AD) has defects in keratinocyte differentiation, particularly in expression of the epidermal barrier protein filaggrin. AD skin lesions are often exacerbated by Staphylococcus aureus-mediated secretion of the virulence factor α-toxin. It is unknown whether lack of keratinocyte differentiation predisposes to enhanced lethality from staphylococcal toxins. We investigated whether keratinocyte differentiation and filaggrin expression protect against cell death induced by staphylococcal α-toxin. Filaggrin-deficient primary keratinocytes were generated through small interfering RNA gene knockdown. RNA expression was determined by using real-time PCR. Cell death was determined by using the lactate dehydrogenase assay. Keratinocyte cell survival in filaggrin-deficient (ft/ft) mouse skin biopsies was determined based on Keratin 5 staining. α-Toxin heptamer formation and acid sphingomyelinase expression were determined by means of immunoblotting. We found that filaggrin expression, occurring as the result of keratinocyte differentiation, significantly inhibits staphylococcal α-toxin-mediated pathogenicity. Furthermore, filaggrin plays a crucial role in protecting cells by mediating the secretion of sphingomyelinase, an enzyme that reduces the number of α-toxin binding sites on the keratinocyte surface. Finally, we determined that sphingomyelinase enzymatic activity directly prevents α-toxin binding and protects keratinocytes against α-toxin-induced cytotoxicity. The current study introduces the novel concept that S aureus α-toxin preferentially targets and destroys filaggrin-deficient keratinocytes. It also provides a mechanism to explain the increased propensity for S aureus-mediated exacerbation of AD skin disease. Copyright © 2012 American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. IDENTIFICATION OF MICROCYSTIN TOXINS FROM A STRAIN OF MICROCYSTIS AERUGINOSA

    EPA Science Inventory

    Microcystin toxins are cyclic heptapeptides produced by several genera and species of cyanobacteria that are responsible for the "green scum" frequently observed on eutrophic surface waters. These toxins, which are a million times more toxic than cyanide ion, have caused deaths o...

  10. Both epsilon-toxin and beta-toxin are important for the lethal properties of Clostridium perfringens type B isolates in the mouse intravenous injection model.

    PubMed

    Fernandez-Miyakawa, Mariano E; Fisher, Derek J; Poon, Rachael; Sayeed, Sameera; Adams, Vicki; Rood, Julian I; McClane, Bruce A; Uzal, Francisco A

    2007-03-01

    Clostridium perfringens is capable of producing up to 15 toxins, including alpha-toxin (CPA), beta-toxin (CPB), epsilon-toxin (ETX), enterotoxin, beta2-toxin (CPB2), and perfringolysin O. Type B isolates, which must produce CPA, CPB, and ETX, are associated with animal illnesses characterized by sudden death or acute neurological signs, with or without intestinal damage. Type B pathogenesis in ruminants is poorly understood, with some animals showing lesions and clinical signs similar to those caused by either type C or type D infections. It is unknown whether host or environmental conditions are dominant for determining the outcome of type B disease or if disease outcomes are determined by variable characteristics of type B isolates. To help clarify this issue, 19 type B isolates were evaluated for toxin production during late-log-phase growth via quantitative Western blotting and by biological activity assays. Most type B isolates produced CPB levels similar to those produced by type C isolates in vitro and have the potential to produce genotype C-like disease. The lethality of type B isolate supernatants administered intravenously to mice was evaluated with or without prior trypsin treatment, and monoclonal antibody neutralization studies also were performed. Correlation analyses comparing toxin levels in type B supernatants versus lethality and neutralization studies both found that the main contributor to lethality without pretreatment with trypsin was CPB, whereas neutralization studies indicated that CPB and ETX were both important after trypsin pretreatment. At least part of the CPB produced by type B isolates remained active after trypsin treatment. However, the overall lethalities of most supernatants were lower after trypsin pretreatment. Also, there was a significant association between ETX, CPB2, and CPA production in vitro among type B isolates. However, our results suggest that both CPB and ETX are likely the most important contributors to the

  11. A perspective on the toxicology of marine toxins.

    PubMed

    Botana, Luis M

    2012-09-17

    Although there has been much progress with regard to marine toxins from dinoflagellates, much remains to be done. Because these compounds are a seafood consumer risk, the demands cover from legislative to scientific aspects. Legislation is required for all new toxins that appear in the coasts. On the other hand, it is important to understand the toxicity of the different analogues, in terms of both the relative toxicity to reference compounds and the mechanism of toxicity itself, both acute and long-term. For this, a uniform approach to do toxic studies is necessary, especially acute toxicity. The need for pure standards in sufficient supply and the understanding of the mode of action of some of the compounds (such as yessotoxin or azaspiracids) will help the development of another important field, the use of marine toxins as drug leads, and the chemistry around them.

  12. Notalgia paresthetica: treatment using intradermal botulinum toxin A.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Pérez, L; García-Gavín, J; Allegue, F; Caeiro, J L; Fabeiro, J M; Zulaica, A

    2014-01-01

    Notalgia paresthetica is a sensory mononeuropathy that affects dorsal segments T2 to T6. It can have a significant effect on quality of life. Numerous treatments have been used with variable results. Five patients diagnosed with notalgia paresthetica were treated with intradermal botulinum toxin A. None had achieved relief of the pruritus with previous treatments. Variable results were observed after the administration of intradermal botulinum toxin. Complete resolution of the pruritus was not achieved in any of the patients. Botulinum toxin A appears to be a safe therapeutic option for patients with notalgia paresthetica. However, data currently available come from small patient series, making it difficult to draw definitive conclusions regarding the true efficacy and long-term effects of this treatment. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier España, S.L. and AEDV. All rights reserved.

  13. Characterization of toxin III of the scorpion Leiurus quinquestriatus quinquestriatus: a new type of alpha-toxin highly toxic both to mammals and insects.

    PubMed

    Kopeyan, C; Mansuelle, P; Martin-Eauclaire, M F; Rochat, H; Miranda, F

    1993-01-01

    The primary structure of toxin III of Leiurus quinquestriatus quinquestriatus (Lqq III) was elucidated by automatic Edman degradation of the reduced and S-carboxymethylated protein and derived tryptic peptides. Like other scorpion toxins that are active on sodium channels, Lqq III, consisting of 64 amino acids, is a 7 kDa single-chain polypeptide crosslinked by four disulfide bridges. It belongs to the alpha-toxin group, as judged by competition experiments with 125I AaH II for binding to rat brain synaptosomes (K0.5 = 7 x 10(-7) M). Lqq III is the first alpha-toxin to be characterized that is highly toxic to mice [LD50 = 50 micrograms (7.1 nmol)/kg body wt], by subcutaneous injection, insects Blatella germanica [LD50 = 60 ng (8.5 pmol)/g body wt.] and Musca domestica [LD50 = 120 ng (17 pmol)/g body wt]. When tested via the intracerebroventricular route, the toxicity for mice [55 micrograms (8 nmol)/kg] was of the same order as that found by subcutaneous injection, indicating that Lqq III has a higher affinity for peripheral sodium channels that for those of the central nervous system. There are three differences between the sequences of Lqq III and Lqh alpha IT, an alpha-toxin isolated from the venom of Leiurus quinquestriatus hebraeus. These substitutions are found at positions 20, 24, and 64 (Ser-->Ala,Asp-->Glu and His-->Arg, respectively). Surprisingly Lqh alpha IT is only weakly active in mice [LD50 = 5 mg (0.7 mumol)/kg], while in insects its toxicity is similar to that of Lqq III [140 ng (20 pmol)/g body wt blowfly larvae]. These observations are relevant to the definition of scorpion toxin structure-activity relationships.

  14. Cellular Uptake of Clostridium botulinum C2 Toxin Requires Acid Sphingomyelinase Activity.

    PubMed

    Nagahama, Masahiro; Takehara, Masaya; Takagishi, Teruhisa; Seike, Soshi; Miyamoto, Kazuaki; Kobayashi, Keiko

    2017-04-01

    Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin consists of an enzyme component (C2I) and a binding component (C2II). Activated C2II (C2IIa) binds to a cell receptor, giving rise to lipid raft-dependent oligomerization, and it then assembles with C2I. The whole toxin complex is then endocytosed into the cytosol, resulting in the destruction of the actin cytoskeleton and cell rounding. Here, we showed that C2 toxin requires acid sphingomyelinase (ASMase) activity during internalization. In this study, inhibitors of ASMase and lysosomal exocytosis blocked C2 toxin-induced cell rounding. C2IIa induced Ca 2+ influx from the extracellular medium to cells. C2 toxin-induced cell rounding was enhanced in the presence of Ca 2+ ASMase was released extracellularly when cells were incubated with C2IIa in the presence of Ca 2+ Small interfering RNA (siRNA) knockdown of ASMase reduced C2 toxin-induced cell rounding. ASMase hydrolyzes sphingomyelin to ceramide on the outer leaflet of the membrane at acidic pH. Ceramide was detected in cytoplasmic vesicles containing C2IIa. These results indicated that ASMase activity is necessary for the efficient internalization of C2 toxin into cells. Inhibitors of ASMase may confer protection against infection. Copyright © 2017 American Society for Microbiology.

  15. Botulinum toxin B: the new option in cosmetic injection.

    PubMed

    Spencer, James M

    2002-07-01

    Botulinum toxin, one of nature's most toxic substances, is the unlikely source of one of cosmetic dermatology's most popular new injectable treatment options. This article describes the physiological and biological workings of the several structurally similar but antigenically distinct serotypes of botulinum toxin, and provides clinical studies comparing and contrasting the key ingredients in Botox, Dysport, and Myobloc (Neurobloc).

  16. Molecular dynamics simulations of a K+ channel blocker: Tc1 toxin from Tityus cambridgei.

    PubMed

    Grottesi, Alessandro; Sansom, Mark S P

    2003-01-30

    Toxins that block voltage-gated potassium (Kv) channels provide a possible template for improved homology models of the Kv pore. In assessing the interactions of Kv channels and their toxins it is important to determine the dynamic flexibility of the toxins. Multiple 10 ns duration molecular dynamics simulations combined with essential dynamics analysis have been used to explore the flexibility of four different Kv channel-blocking toxins. Three toxins (Tc1, AgTx and ChTx) share a common fold. They also share a common pattern of conformational dynamics, as revealed by essential dynamics analysis of the simulation results. This suggests that some aspects of dynamic behaviour are conserved across a single protein fold class. In each of these three toxins, the residue exhibiting minimum flexibility corresponds to a conserved lysine residue that is suggested to interact with the filter domain of the channel. Thus, comparative simulations reveal functionally important conservation of molecular dynamics as well as protein fold across a family of related toxins.

  17. Toxin-induced conformational changes in a potassium channel revealed by solid-state NMR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lange, Adam; Giller, Karin; Hornig, Sönke; Martin-Eauclaire, Marie-France; Pongs, Olaf; Becker, Stefan; Baldus, Marc

    2006-04-01

    The active site of potassium (K+) channels catalyses the transport of K+ ions across the plasma membrane-similar to the catalytic function of the active site of an enzyme-and is inhibited by toxins from scorpion venom. On the basis of the conserved structures of K+ pore regions and scorpion toxins, detailed structures for the K+ channel-scorpion toxin binding interface have been proposed. In these models and in previous solution-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) studies using detergent-solubilized membrane proteins, scorpion toxins were docked to the extracellular entrance of the K+ channel pore assuming rigid, preformed binding sites. Using high-resolution solid-state NMR spectroscopy, here we show that high-affinity binding of the scorpion toxin kaliotoxin to a chimaeric K+ channel (KcsA-Kv1.3) is associated with significant structural rearrangements in both molecules. Our approach involves a combined analysis of chemical shifts and proton-proton distances and demonstrates that solid-state NMR is a sensitive method for analysing the structure of a membrane protein-inhibitor complex. We propose that structural flexibility of the K+ channel and the toxin represents an important determinant for the high specificity of toxin-K+ channel interactions.

  18. [Controversy: botulinum toxin, does it prevent cutaneous aging?].

    PubMed

    Cohen-Letessier, A

    2009-05-01

    By blocking muscular contraction, even if this effect is reversible, botulinum toxin injected early and regularly to prevent aging modifies the facial traits and can result in muscular and cutaneous atrophy. Mechanical information is indispensable to cell survival and conditions the function of fibroblastic synthesis. Aging cannot be reduced to the facial lines; botulinum toxin cannot prevent the other parameters of age such as drying, pigmentation problems, vascular problems, and loss of volume.

  19. Effects of marine toxins on the reproduction and early stages development of aquatic organisms.

    PubMed

    Vasconcelos, Vítor; Azevedo, Joana; Silva, Marisa; Ramos, Vítor

    2010-01-19

    Marine organisms, and specially phytoplankton species, are able to produce a diverse array of toxic compounds that are not yet fully understood in terms of their main targets and biological function. Toxins such as saxitoxins, tetrodotoxin, palytoxin, nodularin, okadaic acid, domoic acid, may be produced in large amounts by dinoflagellates, cyanobacteria, bacteria and diatoms and accumulate in vectors that transfer the toxin along food chains. These may affect top predator organisms, including human populations, leading in some cases to death. Nevertheless, these toxins may also affect the reproduction of aquatic organisms that may be in contact with the toxins, either by decreasing the amount or quality of gametes or by affecting embryonic development. Adults of some species may be insensitive to toxins but early stages are more prone to intoxication because they lack effective enzymatic systems to detoxify the toxins and are more exposed to the toxins due to a higher metabolic growth rate. In this paper we review the current knowledge on the effects of some of the most common marine toxins on the reproduction and development of early stages of some organisms.

  20. Brown Spider (Loxosceles genus) Venom Toxins: Tools for Biological Purposes

    PubMed Central

    Chaim, Olga Meiri; Trevisan-Silva, Dilza; Chaves-Moreira, Daniele; Wille, Ana Carolina M.; Ferrer, Valéria Pereira; Matsubara, Fernando Hitomi; Mangili, Oldemir Carlos; da Silveira, Rafael Bertoni; Gremski, Luiza Helena; Gremski, Waldemiro; Senff-Ribeiro, Andrea; Veiga, Silvio Sanches

    2011-01-01

    Venomous animals use their venoms as tools for defense or predation. These venoms are complex mixtures, mainly enriched of proteic toxins or peptides with several, and different, biological activities. In general, spider venom is rich in biologically active molecules that are useful in experimental protocols for pharmacology, biochemistry, cell biology and immunology, as well as putative tools for biotechnology and industries. Spider venoms have recently garnered much attention from several research groups worldwide. Brown spider (Loxosceles genus) venom is enriched in low molecular mass proteins (5–40 kDa). Although their venom is produced in minute volumes (a few microliters), and contain only tens of micrograms of protein, the use of techniques based on molecular biology and proteomic analysis has afforded rational projects in the area and permitted the discovery and identification of a great number of novel toxins. The brown spider phospholipase-D family is undoubtedly the most investigated and characterized, although other important toxins, such as low molecular mass insecticidal peptides, metalloproteases and hyaluronidases have also been identified and featured in literature. The molecular pathways of the action of these toxins have been reported and brought new insights in the field of biotechnology. Herein, we shall see how recent reports describing discoveries in the area of brown spider venom have expanded biotechnological uses of molecules identified in these venoms, with special emphasis on the construction of a cDNA library for venom glands, transcriptome analysis, proteomic projects, recombinant expression of different proteic toxins, and finally structural descriptions based on crystallography of toxins. PMID:22069711

  1. Clostridium difficile shows no trade-off between toxin and spore production within the human host.

    PubMed

    Blanco, Natalia; Walk, Seth; Malani, Anurag N; Rickard, Alexander; Benn, Michele; Eisenberg, Marisa; Zhang, Min; Foxman, Betsy

    2018-05-01

    This study aimed to describe the correlation between Clostridium difficile spore and toxin levels within the human host. In addition, we assessed whether overgrowth of Candida albicans modified this association. We measured toxin, spore and Candida albicans levels among 200 successively collected stool samples that tested positive for C. difficile, and PCR ribotyped these C. difficile isolates. Analysis of variance and linear regression were used to test the association between spore and toxin levels. Kruskal-Wallis tests and t-tests were used to compare the association between spore or toxin levels and host, specimen, or pathogen characteristics. C. difficile toxin and spore levels were positively associated (P<0.001); this association did not vary significantly with C. albicans overgrowth [≥5 logs of C. albicans colony-forming units (c.f.u.) g -1 ]. However, ribotypes 027 and 078-126 were significantly associated with higher levels of toxin and spores, and C. albicans overgrowth. The strong positive association observed between in vivo levels of C. difficile toxin and spores suggests that patients with more severe C. difficile infections may have increased spore production, enhancing C. difficile transmission. Although, on average, spore levels were higher in toxin-positive samples than in toxin-negative/PCR-positive samples, spores were found in almost all toxin-negative samples. The ubiquity of spore production among toxin-negative and formed stool samples emphasizes the importance of following infection prevention and control measures for all C. difficile-positive patients during their entire hospital stay.

  2. Prevalence and Characterization of a Binary Toxin (Actin-Specific ADP-Ribosyltransferase) from Clostridium difficile

    PubMed Central

    Gonçalves, Carina; Decré, Dominique; Barbut, Frédéric; Burghoffer, Béatrice; Petit, Jean-Claude

    2004-01-01

    In addition to the two large clostridial cytotoxins (TcdA and TcdB), some strains of Clostridium difficile also produce an actin-specific ADP-ribosyltransferase, called binary toxin CDT. We used a PCR method and Southern blotting for the detection of genes encoding the enzymatic (CDTa) and binding (CDTb) components of the binary toxin in 369 strains isolated from patients with suspected C. difficile-associated diarrhea or colitis. Twenty-two strains (a prevalence of 6%) harbored both genes. When binary toxin production was assessed by Western blotting, 19 of the 22 strains reacted with antisera against the iota toxin of C. perfringens (anti-Ia and anti-Ib). Additionally, binary toxin activity, detected by the ADP-ribosyltransferase assay, was present in only 17 of the 22 strains. Subsequently, all 22 binary toxin-positive strains were tested for the production of toxins TcdA and TcdB, toxinotyped, and characterized by serogrouping, PCR ribotyping, arbitrarily primed PCR, and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis. All binary toxin-positive strains also produced TcdB and/or TcdA. However, they had significant changes in the tcdA and tcdB genes and belonged to variant toxinotypes III, IV, V, VII, IX, and XIII. We could differentiate 16 profiles by using typing methods, indicating that most of the binary toxin-positive strains were unrelated. PMID:15131151

  3. Endoribonuclease type II toxin-antitoxin systems: functional or selfish?

    PubMed

    Ramisetty, Bhaskar Chandra Mohan; Santhosh, Ramachandran Sarojini

    2017-07-01

    Most bacterial genomes have multiple type II toxin-antitoxin systems (TAs) that encode two proteins which are referred to as a toxin and an antitoxin. Toxins inhibit a cellular process, while the interaction of the antitoxin with the toxin attenuates the toxin's activity. Endoribonuclease-encoding TAs cleave RNA in a sequence-dependent fashion, resulting in translational inhibition. To account for their prevalence and retention by bacterial genomes, TAs are credited with clinically significant phenomena, such as bacterial programmed cell death, persistence, biofilms and anti-addiction to plasmids. However, the programmed cell death and persistence hypotheses have been challenged because of conceptual, methodological and/or strain issues. In an alternative view, chromosomal TAs seem to be retained by virtue of addiction at two levels: via a poison-antidote combination (TA proteins) and via transcriptional reprogramming of the downstream core gene (due to integration). Any perturbation in the chromosomal TA operons could cause fitness loss due to polar effects on the downstream genes and hence be detrimental under natural conditions. The endoribonucleases encoding chromosomal TAs are most likely selfish DNA as they are retained by bacterial genomes, even though TAs do not confer a direct advantage via the TA proteins. TAs are likely used by various replicons as 'genetic arms' that allow the maintenance of themselves and associated genetic elements. TAs seem to be the 'selfish arms' that make the best use of the 'arms race' between bacterial genomes and plasmids.

  4. Structure, Evolution, and Functions of Bacterial Type III Toxin-Antitoxin Systems.

    PubMed

    Goeders, Nathalie; Chai, Ray; Chen, Bihe; Day, Andrew; Salmond, George P C

    2016-09-28

    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are small genetic modules that encode a toxin (that targets an essential cellular process) and an antitoxin that neutralises or suppresses the deleterious effect of the toxin. Based on the molecular nature of the toxin and antitoxin components, TA systems are categorised into different types. Type III TA systems, the focus of this review, are composed of a toxic endoribonuclease neutralised by a non-coding RNA antitoxin in a pseudoknotted configuration. Bioinformatic analysis shows that the Type III systems can be classified into subtypes. These TA systems were originally discovered through a phage resistance phenotype arising due to a process akin to an altruistic suicide; the phenomenon of abortive infection. Some Type III TA systems are bifunctional and can stabilise plasmids during vegetative growth and sporulation. Features particular to Type III systems are explored here, emphasising some of the characteristics of the RNA antitoxin and how these may affect the co-evolutionary relationship between toxins and cognate antitoxins in their quaternary structures. Finally, an updated analysis of the distribution and diversity of these systems are presented and discussed.

  5. A proteomics assay to detect eight CBRN-relevant toxins in food.

    PubMed

    Gilquin, Benoit; Jaquinod, Michel; Louwagie, Mathilde; Kieffer-Jaquinod, Sylvie; Kraut, Alexandra; Ferro, Myriam; Becher, François; Brun, Virginie

    2017-01-01

    A proteomics assay was set up to analyze food substrates for eight toxins of the CBRN (chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear) threat, namely ricin, Clostridium perfringens epsilon toxin (ETX), Staphylococcus aureus enterotoxins (SEA, SEB and SED), shigatoxins from Shigella dysenteriae and entero-hemorragic Escherichia coli strains (STX1 and STX2) and Campylobacter jejuni cytolethal distending toxin (CDT). The assay developed was based on an antibody-free sample preparation followed by bottom-up LC-MS/MS analysis operated in targeted mode. Highly specific detection and absolute quantification were obtained using isotopically labeled proteins (PSAQ standards) spiked into the food matrix. The sensitivity of the assay for the eight toxins was lower than the oral LD50 which would likely be used in a criminal contamination of food supply. This assay should be useful in monitoring biological threats. In the public-health domain, it opens the way for multiplex investigation of food-borne toxins using targeted LC-MS/MS. © 2016 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  6. Neutralising Antibodies against Ricin Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Prigent, Julie; Panigai, Laetitia; Lamourette, Patricia; Sauvaire, Didier; Devilliers, Karine; Plaisance, Marc; Volland, Hervé; Créminon, Christophe; Simon, Stéphanie

    2011-01-01

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have listed the potential bioweapon ricin as a Category B Agent. Ricin is a so-called A/B toxin produced by plants and is one of the deadliest molecules known. It is easy to prepare and no curative treatment is available. An immunotherapeutic approach could be of interest to attenuate or neutralise the effects of the toxin. We sought to characterise neutralising monoclonal antibodies against ricin and to develop an effective therapy. For this purpose, mouse monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) were produced against the two chains of ricin toxin (RTA and RTB). Seven mAbs were selected for their capacity to neutralise the cytotoxic effects of ricin in vitro. Three of these, two anti-RTB (RB34 and RB37) and one anti-RTA (RA36), when used in combination improved neutralising capacity in vitro with an IC50 of 31 ng/ml. Passive administration of association of these three mixed mAbs (4.7 µg) protected mice from intranasal challenges with ricin (5 LD50). Among those three antibodies, anti-RTB antibodies protected mice more efficiently than the anti-RTA antibody. The combination of the three antibodies protected mice up to 7.5 hours after ricin challenge. The strong in vivo neutralising capacity of this three mAbs combination makes it potentially useful for immunotherapeutic purposes in the case of ricin poisoning or possibly for prevention. PMID:21633505

  7. Review of the inhibition of biological activities of food-related selected toxins by natural compounds.

    PubMed

    Friedman, Mendel; Rasooly, Reuven

    2013-04-23

    There is a need to develop food-compatible conditions to alter the structures of fungal, bacterial, and plant toxins, thus transforming toxins to nontoxic molecules. The term 'chemical genetics' has been used to describe this approach. This overview attempts to survey and consolidate the widely scattered literature on the inhibition by natural compounds and plant extracts of the biological (toxicological) activity of the following food-related toxins: aflatoxin B1, fumonisins, and ochratoxin A produced by fungi; cholera toxin produced by Vibrio cholerae bacteria; Shiga toxins produced by E. coli bacteria; staphylococcal enterotoxins produced by Staphylococcus aureus bacteria; ricin produced by seeds of the castor plant Ricinus communis; and the glycoalkaloid α-chaconine synthesized in potato tubers and leaves. The reduction of biological activity has been achieved by one or more of the following approaches: inhibition of the release of the toxin into the environment, especially food; an alteration of the structural integrity of the toxin molecules; changes in the optimum microenvironment, especially pH, for toxin activity; and protection against adverse effects of the toxins in cells, animals, and humans (chemoprevention). The results show that food-compatible and safe compounds with anti-toxin properties can be used to reduce the toxic potential of these toxins. Practical applications and research needs are suggested that may further facilitate reducing the toxic burden of the diet. Researchers are challenged to (a) apply the available methods without adversely affecting the nutritional quality, safety, and sensory attributes of animal feed and human food and (b) educate food producers and processors and the public about available approaches to mitigating the undesirable effects of natural toxins that may present in the diet.

  8. Review of the Inhibition of Biological Activities of Food-Related Selected Toxins by Natural Compounds

    PubMed Central

    Friedman, Mendel; Rasooly, Reuven

    2013-01-01

    There is a need to develop food-compatible conditions to alter the structures of fungal, bacterial, and plant toxins, thus transforming toxins to nontoxic molecules. The term ‘chemical genetics’ has been used to describe this approach. This overview attempts to survey and consolidate the widely scattered literature on the inhibition by natural compounds and plant extracts of the biological (toxicological) activity of the following food-related toxins: aflatoxin B1, fumonisins, and ochratoxin A produced by fungi; cholera toxin produced by Vibrio cholerae bacteria; Shiga toxins produced by E. coli bacteria; staphylococcal enterotoxins produced by Staphylococcus aureus bacteria; ricin produced by seeds of the castor plant Ricinus communis; and the glycoalkaloid α-chaconine synthesized in potato tubers and leaves. The reduction of biological activity has been achieved by one or more of the following approaches: inhibition of the release of the toxin into the environment, especially food; an alteration of the structural integrity of the toxin molecules; changes in the optimum microenvironment, especially pH, for toxin activity; and protection against adverse effects of the toxins in cells, animals, and humans (chemoprevention). The results show that food-compatible and safe compounds with anti-toxin properties can be used to reduce the toxic potential of these toxins. Practical applications and research needs are suggested that may further facilitate reducing the toxic burden of the diet. Researchers are challenged to (a) apply the available methods without adversely affecting the nutritional quality, safety, and sensory attributes of animal feed and human food and (b) educate food producers and processors and the public about available approaches to mitigating the undesirable effects of natural toxins that may present in the diet. PMID:23612750

  9. Usefulness of intra-articular botulinum toxin injections. A systematic review.

    PubMed

    Khenioui, Hichem; Houvenagel, Eric; Catanzariti, Jean François; Guyot, Marc Alexandre; Agnani, Olivier; Donze, Cécile

    2016-03-01

    Botulinum toxin is a proven and widely used treatment for numerous conditions characterized by excessive muscular contractions. Recent studies have assessed the analgesic effect of botulinum toxin in joint pain and started to unravel its mechanisms. We searched the international literature via the Medline database using the term "intraarticular botulinum toxin injection" combined with any of the following terms: "knee", "ankle", "shoulder", "osteoarthritis", "adhesive capsulitis of the shoulder". Of 16 selected articles about intraarticular botulinum toxin injections, 7 were randomized controlled trials done in patients with osteoarthritis, adhesive capsulitis of the shoulder, or chronic pain after joint replacement surgery. Proof of anti-nociceptive effects was obtained in some of these indications and the safety and tolerance profile was satisfactory. The studies are heterogeneous. The comparator was usually a glucocorticoid or a placebo; a single study used hyaluronic acid. Pain intensity was the primary outcome measure. The number of randomized trials and sample sizes are too small to provide a satisfactory level of scientific evidence or statistical power. Unanswered issues include the effective dosage and the optimal dilution and injection modalities of botulinum toxin. Copyright © 2015 Société française de rhumatologie. Published by Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.

  10. C3larvin toxin, an ADP-ribosyltransferase from Paenibacillus larvae.

    PubMed

    Krska, Daniel; Ravulapalli, Ravikiran; Fieldhouse, Robert J; Lugo, Miguel R; Merrill, A Rod

    2015-01-16

    C3larvin toxin was identified by a bioinformatic strategy as a putative mono-ADP-ribosyltransferase and a possible virulence factor from Paenibacillus larvae, which is the causative agent of American Foulbrood in honey bees. C3larvin targets RhoA as a substrate for its transferase reaction, and kinetics for both the NAD(+) (Km = 34 ± 12 μm) and RhoA (Km = 17 ± 3 μm) substrates were characterized for this enzyme from the mono-ADP-ribosyltransferase C3 toxin subgroup. C3larvin is toxic to yeast when expressed in the cytoplasm, and catalytic variants of the enzyme lost the ability to kill the yeast host, indicating that the toxin exerts its lethality through its enzyme activity. A small molecule inhibitor of C3larvin enzymatic activity was discovered called M3 (Ki = 11 ± 2 μm), and to our knowledge, is the first inhibitor of transferase activity of the C3 toxin family. C3larvin was crystallized, and its crystal structure (apoenzyme) was solved to 2.3 Å resolution. C3larvin was also shown to have a different mechanism of cell entry from other C3 toxins. © 2015 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  11. Cholera toxin activation of adenylate cyclase in cancer cell membrane fragments.

    PubMed Central

    Bitensky, M W; Wheeler, M A; Mehta, H; Miki, N

    1975-01-01

    Activation of adenylate [ATP pyrophosphate-lyase (cyclizing), EC 4.6.1.1] by cholera toxin (84,000 daltons, 5.5 S) is demonstrated in plasma membrane fragments of mouse ascites cancer cells. The activation of adenylate cyclase is mediated by a macromolecular cyclase activating factor (MCAF), which has a sedimentation constant of 2.7 S and a molecular weight of about 26,000. MCAF is derived from, and may be identical to the "A fragment" of cholera toxin. Generation of MCAF depends on prior interaction of cholera toxin with either dithiothreitol, NADH, NAD, or a low-molecular-weight component (less than 700 daltons) present in cytoplasm. Subsequent exposure of this pretreated cholera toxin to cell membranes from a variety of mouse ascites cancer cells is followed rapidly by the appearance of MCAF, which no longer requires dithiothreitol, NADH, or NAD for the activation of adenylate cyclase. Activation of adenylate cyclase by MCAF in ascites cancer cell membrane fragments is not reversed by repeated washing of these membrane fragments. Adenylate cyclase in normal cell membrane fragments fails to respond either to cholera toxin or MCAF in the presence of dithiothreitol. In striking contrast, the adenylate cyclase in membrane fragments from five ascites cancer cells responds to either MCAF or native cholera toxin preincubated with dithiothreitol, NADH, or NAD. PMID:1058474

  12. Sensitive detection of active Shiga toxin using low cost CCD based optical detector

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    To reduce the sources and incidence of food-borne illness there is a need to develop inexpensive sensitive devices for detection of active toxin, such as Shiga toxin type 2 (Stx2). This approach increases the availability of foodborne bacterial toxin diagnostics in regions where there are limited r...

  13. Perfringolysin O: The Underrated Clostridium perfringens Toxin?

    PubMed Central

    Verherstraeten, Stefanie; Goossens, Evy; Valgaeren, Bonnie; Pardon, Bart; Timbermont, Leen; Haesebrouck, Freddy; Ducatelle, Richard; Deprez, Piet; Wade, Kristin R.; Tweten, Rodney; Van Immerseel, Filip

    2015-01-01

    The anaerobic bacterium Clostridium perfringens expresses multiple toxins that promote disease development in both humans and animals. One such toxin is perfringolysin O (PFO, classically referred to as θ toxin), a pore-forming cholesterol-dependent cytolysin (CDC). PFO is secreted as a water-soluble monomer that recognizes and binds membranes via cholesterol. Membrane-bound monomers undergo structural changes that culminate in the formation of an oligomerized prepore complex on the membrane surface. The prepore then undergoes conversion into the bilayer-spanning pore measuring approximately 250–300 Å in diameter. PFO is expressed in nearly all identified C. perfringens strains and harbors interesting traits that suggest a potential undefined role for PFO in disease development. Research has demonstrated a role for PFO in gas gangrene progression and bovine necrohemorrhagic enteritis, but there is limited data available to determine if PFO also functions in additional disease presentations caused by C. perfringens. This review summarizes the known structural and functional characteristics of PFO, while highlighting recent insights into the potential contributions of PFO to disease pathogenesis. PMID:26008232

  14. Perfringolysin O: The Underrated Clostridium perfringens Toxin?

    PubMed

    Verherstraeten, Stefanie; Goossens, Evy; Valgaeren, Bonnie; Pardon, Bart; Timbermont, Leen; Haesebrouck, Freddy; Ducatelle, Richard; Deprez, Piet; Wade, Kristin R; Tweten, Rodney; Van Immerseel, Filip

    2015-05-14

    The anaerobic bacterium Clostridium perfringens expresses multiple toxins that promote disease development in both humans and animals. One such toxin is perfringolysin O (PFO, classically referred to as θ toxin), a pore-forming cholesterol-dependent cytolysin (CDC). PFO is secreted as a water-soluble monomer that recognizes and binds membranes via cholesterol. Membrane-bound monomers undergo structural changes that culminate in the formation of an oligomerized prepore complex on the membrane surface. The prepore then undergoes conversion into the bilayer-spanning pore measuring approximately 250-300 Å in diameter. PFO is expressed in nearly all identified C. perfringens strains and harbors interesting traits that suggest a potential undefined role for PFO in disease development. Research has demonstrated a role for PFO in gas gangrene progression and bovine necrohemorrhagic enteritis, but there is limited data available to determine if PFO also functions in additional disease presentations caused by C. perfringens. This review summarizes the known structural and functional characteristics of PFO, while highlighting recent insights into the potential contributions of PFO to disease pathogenesis.

  15. [Bruxism, temporo-mandibular dysfunction and botulinum toxin].

    PubMed

    Chikhani, L; Dichamp, J

    2003-07-01

    Tooth grinding and tooth clenching are unvoluntary mainly nocturnal habits that result in an hypertrophy of masseter and temporalis muscles with an unbalance between opening and closing muscles of the jaw and lead to an alteration of mandibular condyles movements and to hyper pressure in the temporo-mandibular joints (TMJ) which can generate severe pain. Intra muscular injections of botulinum toxin permit to restablish the balance between closing and opening muscles, to relieve pain, to treat masseteric hypertrophy with improvement of face outline and to recover a normal cinetic of temporo-mandibular joints. Moreover, botulinum toxin injections permit to quit habits of tooth grinding and clenching and one single session of injections is curative for 2/3 of the patients. There are no side effects apart from slight diffusion to superficial muscles of the face resulting in a "fixed" smile for about 6 to 8 weeks. So injections of botulinum toxin in masseter and temporalis muscles are an efficient treatment of bruxism and TMJ dysfunction, cheap with no lasting side effect.

  16. [The route of botulinum toxin from cause of food poisoning to medical remedy].

    PubMed

    Sätilä, Heli

    2014-01-01

    Botulinum toxins are amongst the most poisonous substances known in nature. The discovery and development of this toxin into a medical remedy is one of the most fascinating stories in the history of medicine. German physician Justinus Kerner founded the theory of treating hyperactive disorders with botulinum toxin and Alan Scott was the one to make this happen successfully. Nowadays the toxin is widely used in different indications, and the research is still going on for discovering novel tools for treating e.g. pain.

  17. Fusarial toxins: secondary metabolites of Fusarium fungi.

    PubMed

    Nesic, Ksenija; Ivanovic, Snezana; Nesic, Vladimir

    2014-01-01

    Exposure to mycotoxins occurs worldwide, even though there are geographic and climatic differences in the amounts produced and occurrence of these substances.Mycotoxins are secondary chemical metabolites of different fungi. They are natural contaminants of cereals, so their presence is often inevitable. Among many genera that produce mycotoxins, Fusarium fungi are the most widespread in cereal-growing areas of the planet. Fusarium fungi produce a diversity of mycotoxin types, whose distributions are also diverse. What is produced and where it is produced is influenced primarily by environmental conditions, and crop production and storage methods. The amount of toxin produced depends on physical (viz., moisture, relative humidity, temperature, and mechanical damage), chemical (viz., carbon dioxide,oxygen, composition of substrate, insecticides and fungicides), and biological factors (viz., plant variety, stress, insects, spore load, etc.). Moisture and temperature have a major influence on mold growth rate and mycotoxin production.Among the most toxic and prevalent fusaria) toxins are the following: zearalenone,fumonisins, moniliformin and trichothecenes (T-2/HT-2 toxin, deoxynivalenol,diacetoxyscirpenol, nivalenol). Zearalenone (ZEA; ZON, F-2 toxin) isaphy to estrogenic compound, primarily a field contaminant, which exhibits estrogenic activity and has been implicated in numerous mycotoxicoses of farm animals,especially pigs. Recently, evidence suggests that ZEA has potential to stimulate the growth of human breast cancer cells. Fumonisins are also cancer-promoting metabolites,of which Fumonisin 8 I (FBI) is the most important. Moniliformin (MON) isalso highly toxic to both animals and humans. Trichothecenes are classified as gastrointestinal toxins, dermatotoxins, immunotoxins, hematotoxins, and gene toxins.T-2 and HT-2 toxin, and diacetoxyscirpenol (DAS, anguidine) are the most toxic mycotoxins among the trichothecene group. Deoxynivalenol (DON, vomitoxin) and

  18. Staphylococcus aureus α-Toxin Response Distinguishes Respiratory Virus–Methicillin-Resistant S. aureus Coinfection in Children

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Karl O. A.; Randolph, Adrienne G.; Agan, Anna A.; Yip, Wai-Ki; Truemper, Edward J.; Weiss, Scott L.; Ackerman, Kate G.; Schwarz, Adam J.; Giuliano, John S.; Hall, Mark W.; Bubeck Wardenburg, Juliane

    2016-01-01

    Background. Development of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) pneumonia after a respiratory viral infection is frequently fatal in children. In mice, S. aureus α-toxin directly injures pneumocytes and increases mortality, whereas α-toxin blockade mitigates disease. The role of α-toxin in pediatric staphylococcal-viral coinfection is unclear. Methods. We enrolled children across 34 North American pediatric intensive care units with acute respiratory failure and suspected influenza virus infection. Serial serum anti-α-toxin antibody titers and functional α-toxin neutralization capacity were compared across children coinfected with MRSA or methicillin-susceptible S. aureus (MSSA) and control children infected with influenza virus only. MRSA isolates were tested for α-toxin production and lethality in a murine pneumonia model. Results. Influenza virus was identified in 22 of 25 children with MRSA coinfection (9 died) and 22 patients with MSSA coinfection (all survived). Initial α-toxin–specific antibody titers were similar, compared with those in the 13 controls. In patients with serial samples, only MRSA-coinfected patients showed time-dependent increases in anti-α-toxin titer and functional neutralization capacity. MRSA α-toxin production from patient isolates correlated with initial serologic titers and with mortality in murine pneumonia. Conclusions. These data implicate α-toxin as a relevant antigen in severe pediatric MRSA pneumonia associated with respiratory viral infection, supporting a potential role for toxin-neutralizing therapy. PMID:27651418

  19. Bifactorial versus monofactorial molecular status of Staphylococcus aureus gamma-toxin.

    PubMed

    Guidi-Rontani, C; Fouque, F; Alouf, J E

    1994-01-01

    The extracellular Staphylococcus aureus gamma-toxin (hemolysin) released by the Smith 5R strain has been purified (M(r) 38 kDa, pl 9.55). We established that this cytolysin is a single polypeptide fully lytic on rabbit erythrocytes. In contrast, this toxin alone was unable to lyse other cells and was required to act jointly with an accessory 58 kDa protein released by the same strain. This protein, named sensitizing protein (SP), was required in order to damage the cytoplasmic membranes of other red blood cells including human erythrocytes as well as that of other eukaryotic cells (Jurkat and Hep-2). The lytic process can be referred to as conditional synergistic or cooperative lysis. gamma-toxin, and SP were also found able to disrupt phospholipid/cholesterol containing liposomes. We demonstrated that a minor membrane phospholipid, phosphatidylinositol, is crucial for gamma-toxin binding to cells and/or channel formation through membrane lipid bilayer.

  20. Effects of Animal Venoms and Toxins on Hallmarks of Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Chaisakul, Janeyuth; Hodgson, Wayne C.; Kuruppu, Sanjaya; Prasongsook, Naiyarat

    2016-01-01

    Animal venoms are a cocktail of proteins and peptides, targeting vital physiological processes. Venoms have evolved to assist in the capture and digestion of prey. Key venom components often include neurotoxins, myotoxins, cardiotoxins, hematoxins and catalytic enzymes. The pharmacological activities of venom components have been investigated as a source of potential therapeutic agents. Interestingly, a number of animal toxins display profound anticancer effects. These include toxins purified from snake, bee and scorpion venoms effecting cancer cell proliferation, migration, invasion, apoptotic activity and neovascularization. Indeed, the mechanism behind the anticancer effect of certain toxins is similar to that of agents currently used in chemotherapy. For example, Lebein is a snake venom disintegrin which generates anti-angiogenic effects by inhibiting vascular endothelial growth factors (VEGF). In this review article, we highlight the biological activities of animal toxins on the multiple steps of tumour formation or hallmarks of cancer. We also discuss recent progress in the discovery of lead compounds for anticancer drug development from venom components. PMID:27471574

  1. Chemical constitution of the host-specific toxin of Helminthosporium carbonum.

    PubMed

    Pringle, R B

    1970-07-01

    The host-specific toxin of Helminthosporium carbonum Ullstrup has a molecular formula approximating C(32)H(50)N(6)O(10). The compound has been crystallized and a crystalline hydrochloride derivative has been produced. The molecular weight, as determined by chromatography on Sephadex G-10, is slightly less than 700. The toxin appears to be a cyclic peptide, since, although it does not react with ninhydrin or dinitrofluorobenzene, it yields, on hydrolysis, compounds which react to these reagents. It is unstable in dilute acids, yielding ninhydrin-reacting products. Complete acid hydrolysis yields alanine, proline, and three other ninhydrin-reacting components. The infrared spectrum of the toxin reveals an ester band in addition to amide absorption. Its ultraviolet spectrum reveals the presence of unsaturation in the molecule. The toxin is relatively unstable and loses its specific toxicity. This loss of activity appears to be associated with loss of nitrogen and with decreased solubility in water.

  2. The assembly dynamics of the cytolytic pore toxin ClyA

    PubMed Central

    Benke, Stephan; Roderer, Daniel; Wunderlich, Bengt; Nettels, Daniel; Glockshuber, Rudi; Schuler, Benjamin

    2015-01-01

    Pore-forming toxins are protein assemblies used by many organisms to disrupt the membranes of target cells. They are expressed as soluble monomers that assemble spontaneously into multimeric pores. However, owing to their complexity, the assembly processes have not been resolved in detail for any pore-forming toxin. To determine the assembly mechanism for the ring-shaped, homododecameric pore of the bacterial cytolytic toxin ClyA, we collected a diverse set of kinetic data using single-molecule spectroscopy and complementary techniques on timescales from milliseconds to hours, and from picomolar to micromolar ClyA concentrations. The entire range of experimental results can be explained quantitatively by a surprisingly simple mechanism. First, addition of the detergent n-dodecyl-β-D-maltopyranoside to the soluble monomers triggers the formation of assembly-competent toxin subunits, accompanied by the transient formation of a molten-globule-like intermediate. Then, all sterically compatible oligomers contribute to assembly, which greatly enhances the efficiency of pore formation compared with simple monomer addition. PMID:25652783

  3. Assessing the presence of marine toxins in bivalve molluscs from southwest India.

    PubMed

    Turner, Andrew D; Dhanji-Rapkova, Monika; Rowland-Pilgrim, Stephanie; Turner, Lucy M; Rai, Ashwin; Venugopal, Moleyur N; Karunasagar, Indrani; Godhe, Anna

    2017-12-15

    The south west coast of India has been showing a steady increase in shellfish cultivation both for local consumption and fishery export, over recent years. Perna viridis and Crassostrea madrasensis are two species of bivalve molluscs which grow in some selected regions of southern Karnataka, close to the city of Mangalore. In the early 1980s, shellfish consumers in the region were affected by intoxication from Paralytic Shellfish Poison present in local bivalves (clams and oysters) resulting in hospitalisation of many, including one fatality. Since then, there have been no further reports of serious shellfish intoxication and there is little awareness of the risks from natural toxins and no routine monitoring programme in place to protect shellfish consumers. This study presents the findings from the first ever systematic assessment of the presence of marine toxins in mussels and oysters grown in four different shellfish harvesting areas in the region. Shellfish were collected and subjected to analysis for ASP, PSP and lipophilic toxins, as well as a suite of non-EU regulated toxins such as tetrodotoxin and selected cyclic imines. Results revealed the presence of low levels of PSP toxins in oysters throughout the study period. Overall, total toxicities reached a maximum of 10% of the EU regulatory limit of 800 μg STX eq/kg. Toxin profiles were similar to those reported from the 1980 outbreak. No evidence was found for significant levels of ASP and lipophilic toxins, although some cyclic imines were detected, including gymnodimine. The results indicated that the risk to shellfish consumers during this specific study period would have been low. However, with historical evidence for extremely high levels of PSP toxins in molluscs, there is a strong need for routine surveillance of shellfish production areas for marine toxins, in order to mitigate against human health impacts resulting from unexpected harmful algal blooms, with potentially devastating socio

  4. Cellular recovery from exposure to sub-optimal concentrations of AB toxins that inhibit protein synthesis

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Shiga toxin 1, exotoxin A, diphtheria toxin and ricin are all AB-type protein toxins that act within the host cytosol to kill the host cell through a pathway involving the inhibition of protein synthesis. It is thought that a single molecule of cytosolic toxin is sufficient to kill the host cell. In...

  5. DNA aptamers as a novel approach to neutralize Staphylococcus aureus α-toxin.

    PubMed

    Vivekananda, Jeevalatha; Salgado, Christi; Millenbaugh, Nancy J

    2014-02-14

    Staphylococcus aureus is a versatile pathogen capable of causing a broad spectrum of diseases ranging from superficial skin infections to life threatening conditions such as endocarditis, septicemia, pneumonia and toxic shock syndrome. In vitro and in vivo studies identified an exotoxin, α-toxin, as a major cause of S. aureus toxicity. Because S. aureus has rapidly evolved resistance to a number of antibiotics, including methicillin, it is important to identify new therapeutic strategies, other than antibiotics, for inhibiting the harmful effects of this pathogen. Aptamers are single-stranded DNA or RNA oligonucleotides with three-dimensional folded conformations that bind with high affinity and selectivity to targets and modulate their biological functions. The goal of this study was to isolate DNA aptamers that specifically inhibit the cytotoxic activity of α-toxin. After 10 rounds of Systematic Evolution of Ligands by EXponential Enrichment (SELEX), 49 potential anti-α-toxin aptamers were identified. In vitro neutralization assays demonstrated that 4 of these 49 aptamers, AT-27, AT-33, AT-36, and AT-49, significantly inhibited α-toxin-mediated cell death in Jurkat T cells. Furthermore, RT-PCR analysis revealed that α-toxin increased the transcription of the inflammatory cytokines TNF-α and IL-17 and that anti-α-toxin aptamers AT-33 and AT-36 inhibited the upregulation of these genes. Collectively, the data suggest the feasibility of generating functionally effective aptamers against α-toxin for treatment of S. aureus infections. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  6. Influence of yogurt fermentation and refrigerated storage on the stability of protein toxin contaminants.

    PubMed

    Jackson, Lauren S; Triplett, Odbert A; Tolleson, William H

    2015-06-01

    Dairy products sold in a ready-to-eat form present the risk that adulterants persisting through manufacturing, storage, and distribution would reach consumers. Pathogenic microbes, including shigatoxigenic strains of Escherichia coli and the toxins they produce, are common food safety hazards associated with dairy products. Ricin and abrin are plant-derived ribosome-inactivating protein toxins related to the shiga-like toxins produced by E. coli. Limited information exists on the effects of manufacturing processes on the stabilities of these heat-resistant ribosome-inactivating proteins in the presence of foods. The goal of this study was to determine how typical yogurt manufacturing and storage processes influence ribosome-inactivating protein toxins. Ricin and abrin were added to skim or whole milk and batch pasteurized. Complete inactivation of both toxins was observed after 30 minutes at 85 °C. If the toxins were added after pasteurization, the levels of ricin and abrin in yogurt and their cytotoxic activities did not change significantly during fermentation or refrigerated storage for 4 weeks. The activities of ricin and abrin were inhibited by skim milk, nonfat yogurt, whole milk, and whole milk yogurt. The results showed minimal effects of the toxins on yogurt pH and %titratable acidity but inhibitory effects of yogurt on toxin activity. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  7. Detergent-Resistant Membrane Microdomains Facilitate Ib Oligomer Formation and Biological Activity of Clostridium perfringens Iota-Toxin

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2004-04-01

    spore-forming bacilli such as Clostridium spiroforme (iota-like toxin), Clostridium botulinum (C2 toxin), Bacillus anthracis (lethal and edema toxins...ously (28). Goat C. spiroforme and C. perfringens type C antisera were purchased from TechLab, Inc. (Blacksburg, Va.). Mouse monoclonal antibodies...membrane preparations was specific. Previous studies showed that the binary C. spiroforme toxin shares common epitopes with iota-toxin, and antisera

  8. Attempts to identify Clostridium botulinum toxin in milk from three experimentally intoxicated Holstein cows

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Moeller, R.B.; Puschner, B.; Walker, R.L.; Rocke, T.E.; Smith, S.R.; Cullor, J.S.; Ardans, A.A.

    2009-01-01

    Three adult lactating Holstein cows were injected in the subcutaneous abdominal vein with 175 ng/kg of body weight of Clostridium botulinum type C toxin (451 cow median toxic doses) to determine if this botulinum toxin crosses the blood–milk barrier. Whole blood (in sodium heparin) and clotted blood serum samples were taken at 0 min, 10 min, and 3, 6, 9, and 12 h postinoculation. Milk samples were taken at 0 min and at 3, 6, 9 and 12 h postinoculation. All samples were tested for the presence of the toxin using the mouse bioassay and immunostick ELISA test. The immunostick ELISA identified the toxin in whole blood and the mouse bioassay identified the toxin in serum at all times examined in all 3 animals. Toxin was not identified by either detection method in milk samples collected from the 3 animals. From these results, it appears that Clostridium botulinum type C toxin does not cross from the blood to the milk in detectable concentrations.

  9. Crystal structure of the toxin Msmeg_6760, the structural homolog of Mycobacterium tuberculosis Rv2035, a novel type II toxin involved in the hypoxic response

    SciTech Connect

    Bajaj, R. Alexandra; Arbing, Mark A.; Shin, Annie

    The structure of Msmeg_6760, a protein of unknown function, has been determined. Biochemical and bioinformatics analyses determined that Msmeg_6760 interacts with a protein encoded in the same operon, Msmeg_6762, and predicted that the operon is a toxin–antitoxin (TA) system. Structural comparison of Msmeg_6760 with proteins of known function suggests that Msmeg_6760 binds a hydrophobic ligand in a buried cavity lined by large hydrophobic residues. Access to this cavity could be controlled by a gate–latch mechanism. The function of the Msmeg_6760 toxin is unknown, but structure-based predictions revealed that Msmeg_6760 and Msmeg_6762 are homologous to Rv2034 and Rv2035, a predicted novelmore » TA system involved inMycobacterium tuberculosislatency during macrophage infection. The Msmeg_6760 toxin fold has not been previously described for bacterial toxins and its unique structural features suggest that toxin activation is likely to be mediated by a novel mechanism.« less

  10. Evaluation of Rapid, Early Warning Approaches to Track Shellfish Toxins Associated with Dinophysis and Alexandrium Blooms

    PubMed Central

    Hattenrath-Lehmann, Theresa K.; Lusty, Mark W.; Wallace, Ryan B.; Haynes, Bennie; Wang, Zhihong; Broadwater, Maggie; Deeds, Jonathan R.; Morton, Steve L.; Hastback, William; Porter, Leonora; Chytalo, Karen

    2018-01-01

    Marine biotoxin-contaminated seafood has caused thousands of poisonings worldwide this century. Given these threats, there is an increasing need for improved technologies that can be easily integrated into coastal monitoring programs. This study evaluates approaches for monitoring toxins associated with recurrent toxin-producing Alexandrium and Dinophysis blooms on Long Island, NY, USA, which cause paralytic and diarrhetic shellfish poisoning (PSP and DSP), respectively. Within contrasting locations, the dynamics of pelagic Alexandrium and Dinophysis cell densities, toxins in plankton, and toxins in deployed blue mussels (Mytilus edulis) were compared with passive solid-phase adsorption toxin tracking (SPATT) samplers filled with two types of resin, HP20 and XAD-2. Multiple species of wild shellfish were also collected during Dinophysis blooms and used to compare toxin content using two different extraction techniques (single dispersive and double exhaustive) and two different toxin analysis assays (liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry and the protein phosphatase inhibition assay (PP2A)) for the measurement of DSP toxins. DSP toxins measured in the HP20 resin were significantly correlated (R2 = 0.7–0.9, p < 0.001) with total DSP toxins in shellfish, but were detected more than three weeks prior to detection in deployed mussels. Both resins adsorbed measurable levels of PSP toxins, but neither quantitatively tracked Alexandrium cell densities, toxicity in plankton or toxins in shellfish. DSP extraction and toxin analysis methods did not differ significantly (p > 0.05), were highly correlated (R2 = 0.98–0.99; p < 0.001) and provided complete recovery of DSP toxins from standard reference materials. Blue mussels (Mytilus edulis) and ribbed mussels (Geukensia demissa) were found to accumulate DSP toxins above federal and international standards (160 ng g−1) during Dinophysis blooms while Eastern oysters (Crassostrea virginica) and soft shell clams (Mya

  11. Antibodies derived from a toxoid MEFA (multiepitope fusion antigen) show neutralizing activities against heat-labile toxin (LT), heat-stable toxins (STa, STb), and Shiga toxin 2e (Stx2e) of porcine enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC).

    PubMed

    Rausch, Dana; Ruan, Xiaosai; Nandre, Rahul; Duan, Qiangde; Hashish, Emad; Casey, Thomas A; Zhang, Weiping

    2017-04-01

    Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) strains are the main cause of diarrhea in pigs. Pig diarrhea especially post-weaning diarrhea remains one of the most important swine diseases. ETEC bacterial fimbriae including K88, F18, 987P, K99 and F41 promote bacterial attachment to intestinal epithelial cells and facilitate ETEC colonization in pig small intestine. ETEC enterotoxins including heat-labile toxin (LT) and heat-stable toxins type Ia (porcine-type STa) and type II (STb) stimulate fluid hyper-secretion, leading to watery diarrhea. Blocking bacteria colonization and/or neutralizing enterotoxicity of ETEC toxins are considered effective prevention against ETEC diarrhea. In this study, we applied the MEFA (multiepitope fusion antigen) strategy to create toxoid MEFAs that carried antigenic elements of ETEC toxins, and examined for broad antitoxin immunogenicity in a murine model. By embedding STa toxoid STa P12F (NTFYCCELCCNFACAGCY), a STb epitope (KKDLCEHY), and an epitope of Stx2e A subunit (QSYVSSLN) into the A1 peptide of a monomeric LT toxoid (LT R192G ), two toxoid MEFAs, 'LT R192G -STb-Stx2e-STa P12F ' and 'LT R192G -STb-Stx2e-3xSTa P12F ' which carried three copies of STa P12F , were constructed. Mice intraperitoneally immunized with each toxoid MEFA developed IgG antibodies to all four toxins. Induced antibodies showed in vitro neutralizing activities against LT, STa, STb and Stx2e toxins. Moreover, suckling piglets born by a gilt immunized with 'LT R192G -STb-Stx2e-3xSTa P12F ' were protected when challenged with ETEC strains, whereas piglets born by a control gilt developed diarrhea. Results from this study showed that the toxoid MEFA induced broadly antitoxin antibodies, and suggested potential application of the toxoid MEFA for developing a broad-spectrum vaccine against ETEC diarrhea in pigs. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Botulinum toxin (BoNT) and back pain.

    PubMed

    Porta, Mauro; Maggioni, G

    2004-02-01

    Myofascial pain syndrome is defined as subacute or chronic pain with sensory, motor and autonomic symptoms referred from active trigger points with associated painful dysfunctions. Authors present the usefulness of botulinum toxin A or B (BoNT/A or BoNT/B) injected into target muscles since the toxin is capable of controlling not only the muscular spasm but mostly the pain by alternative mechanisms of action, which are discussed. Posology of BoNT, technical aspects and results are presented. BoNT represents an interesting and useful tool for an adequate management of patients with myofascial pain.

  13. Natural Toxins for Use in Pest Management

    PubMed Central

    Duke, Stephen O.; Cantrell, Charles L.; Meepagala, Kumudini M.; Wedge, David E.; Tabanca, Nurhayat; Schrader, Kevin K.

    2010-01-01

    Natural toxins are a source of new chemical classes of pesticides, as well as environmentally and toxicologically safer molecules than many of the currently used pesticides. Furthermore, they often have molecular target sites that are not exploited by currently marketed pesticides. There are highly successful products based on natural compounds in the major pesticide classes. These include the herbicide glufosinate (synthetic phosphinothricin), the spinosad insecticides, and the strobilurin fungicides. These and other examples of currently marketed natural product-based pesticides, as well as natural toxins that show promise as pesticides from our own research are discussed. PMID:22069667

  14. Natural toxins for use in pest management.

    PubMed

    Duke, Stephen O; Cantrell, Charles L; Meepagala, Kumudini M; Wedge, David E; Tabanca, Nurhayat; Schrader, Kevin K

    2010-08-01

    Natural toxins are a source of new chemical classes of pesticides, as well as environmentally and toxicologically safer molecules than many of the currently used pesticides. Furthermore, they often have molecular target sites that are not exploited by currently marketed pesticides. There are highly successful products based on natural compounds in the major pesticide classes. These include the herbicide glufosinate (synthetic phosphinothricin), the spinosad insecticides, and the strobilurin fungicides. These and other examples of currently marketed natural product-based pesticides, as well as natural toxins that show promise as pesticides from our own research are discussed.

  15. Dissecting the role of ADAM10 as a mediator of Staphylococcus aureus α-toxin action.

    PubMed

    von Hoven, Gisela; Rivas, Amable J; Neukirch, Claudia; Klein, Stefan; Hamm, Christian; Qin, Qianqian; Meyenburg, Martina; Füser, Sabine; Saftig, Paul; Hellmann, Nadja; Postina, Rolf; Husmann, Matthias

    2016-07-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is a leading cause of bacterial infections in humans, including life-threatening diseases such as pneumonia and sepsis. Its small membrane-pore-forming α-toxin is considered an important virulence factor. By destroying cell-cell contacts through cleavage of cadherins, the metalloproteinase ADAM10 (a disintegrin and metalloproteinase 10) critically contributes to α-toxin-dependent pathology of experimental S. aureus infections in mice. Moreover, ADAM10 was proposed to be a receptor for α-toxin. However, it is unclear whether the catalytic activity or specific domains of ADAM10 are involved in mediating binding and/or subsequent cytotoxicity of α-toxin. Also, it is not known how α-toxin triggers ADAM10's enzymatic activity, and whether ADAM10 is invariably required for all α-toxin action on cells. In the present study, we show that efficient cleavage of the ADAM10 substrate epithelial cadherin (E-cadherin) requires supra-cytotoxic concentrations of α-toxin, leading to significant increases in intracellular [Ca(2+)]; the fall in cellular ATP levels, typically following membrane perforation, became observable at far lower concentrations. Surprisingly, ADAM10 was dispensable for α-toxin-dependent xenophagic targeting of S. aureus, whereas a role for α-toxin attack on the plasma membrane was confirmed. The catalytic site of ADAM10, furin cleavage site, cysteine switch and intracellular domain of ADAM10 were not required for α-toxin binding and subsequent cytotoxicity. In contrast, an essential role for the disintegrin domain and the prodomain emerged. Thus, co-expression of the prodomain with prodomain-deficient ADAM10 reconstituted binding of α-toxin and susceptibility of ADAM10-deficient cells. The results of the present study may help to inform structural analyses of α-toxin-ADAM10 interactions and to design novel strategies to counteract S. aureus α-toxin action. © 2016 The Author(s). published by Portland Press Limited on behalf

  16. Channel-Forming Bacterial Toxins in Biosensing and Macromolecule Delivery

    PubMed Central

    Gurnev, Philip A.; Nestorovich, Ekaterina M.

    2014-01-01

    To intoxicate cells, pore-forming bacterial toxins are evolved to allow for the transmembrane traffic of different substrates, ranging from small inorganic ions to cell-specific polypeptides. Recent developments in single-channel electrical recordings, X-ray crystallography, protein engineering, and computational methods have generated a large body of knowledge about the basic principles of channel-mediated molecular transport. These discoveries provide a robust framework for expansion of the described principles and methods toward use of biological nanopores in the growing field of nanobiotechnology. This article, written for a special volume on “Intracellular Traffic and Transport of Bacterial Protein Toxins”, reviews the current state of applications of pore-forming bacterial toxins in small- and macromolecule-sensing, targeted cancer therapy, and drug delivery. We discuss the electrophysiological studies that explore molecular details of channel-facilitated protein and polymer transport across cellular membranes using both natural and foreign substrates. The review focuses on the structurally and functionally different bacterial toxins: gramicidin A of Bacillus brevis, α-hemolysin of Staphylococcus aureus, and binary toxin of Bacillus anthracis, which have found their “second life” in a variety of developing medical and technological applications. PMID:25153255

  17. Spider toxin inhibits gating pore currents underlying periodic paralysis.

    PubMed

    Männikkö, Roope; Shenkarev, Zakhar O; Thor, Michael G; Berkut, Antonina A; Myshkin, Mikhail Yu; Paramonov, Alexander S; Kulbatskii, Dmitrii S; Kuzmin, Dmitry A; Sampedro Castañeda, Marisol; King, Louise; Wilson, Emma R; Lyukmanova, Ekaterina N; Kirpichnikov, Mikhail P; Schorge, Stephanie; Bosmans, Frank; Hanna, Michael G; Kullmann, Dimitri M; Vassilevski, Alexander A

    2018-04-24

    Gating pore currents through the voltage-sensing domains (VSDs) of the skeletal muscle voltage-gated sodium channel Na V 1.4 underlie hypokalemic periodic paralysis (HypoPP) type 2. Gating modifier toxins target ion channels by modifying the function of the VSDs. We tested the hypothesis that these toxins could function as blockers of the pathogenic gating pore currents. We report that a crab spider toxin Hm-3 from Heriaeus melloteei can inhibit gating pore currents due to mutations affecting the second arginine residue in the S4 helix of VSD-I that we have found in patients with HypoPP and describe here. NMR studies show that Hm-3 partitions into micelles through a hydrophobic cluster formed by aromatic residues and reveal complex formation with VSD-I through electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions with the S3b helix and the S3-S4 extracellular loop. Our data identify VSD-I as a specific binding site for neurotoxins on sodium channels. Gating modifier toxins may constitute