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Sample records for snake venom proteins

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

  2. Structure and function of snake venom cysteine-rich secretory proteins.

    PubMed

    Yamazaki, Yasuo; Morita, Takashi

    2004-09-01

    Cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRISPs) are primarily found in the epididymis of mammals and are expressed in diverse organisms. However, the functions of most CRISPs remain unknown. Recent studies reveal that CRISPs are widely distributed in snake venoms and that they inhibit smooth muscle contraction and cyclic nucleotide-gated ion channels. In this review, we discuss recent findings on several snake venom-derived CRISPs.

  3. Snake venom toxins: toxicity and medicinal applications.

    PubMed

    Chan, Yau Sang; Cheung, Randy Chi Fai; Xia, Lixin; Wong, Jack Ho; Ng, Tzi Bun; Chan, Wai Yee

    2016-07-01

    Snake venoms are complex mixtures of small molecules and peptides/proteins, and most of them display certain kinds of bioactivities. They include neurotoxic, cytotoxic, cardiotoxic, myotoxic, and many different enzymatic activities. Snake envenomation is a significant health issue as millions of snakebites are reported annually. A large number of people are injured and die due to snake venom poisoning. However, several fatal snake venom toxins have found potential uses as diagnostic tools, therapeutic agent, or drug leads. In this review, different non-enzymatically active snake venom toxins which have potential therapeutic properties such as antitumor, antimicrobial, anticoagulating, and analgesic activities will be discussed.

  4. Structural divergence of cysteine-rich secretory proteins in snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Matsunaga, Yukiko; Yamazaki, Yasuo; Hyodo, Fumiko; Sugiyama, Yusuke; Nozaki, Masatoshi; Morita, Takashi

    2009-03-01

    Cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRISPs) are expressed in spermatocytes and granules of neutrophils in mammals, and are associated with sperm maturation and host defense. Related proteins have recently been recovered in snake venoms, and some of the snake venom-derived CRISPs exhibit ion channel blocking activity. Here we isolated and identified two novel CRISPs (kaouthin-1 and kaouthin-2) from the venom of Naja kaouthia (Elapidae), and cloned the encoding cDNAs. Kaouthin-1 and kaouthin-2 were classified into two broad sister groups of Elapidae, the Asian species and the marine/Australian species, respectively. Sequence comparisons reveal that the high-frequency variable regions among snake venom CRISPs define a continuous line on the molecular surface of the N-terminal pathogenesis-related protein-1 (PR-1) domain and the C-terminal cysteine-rich domain (CRD). Snake venom proteins generally display efficient molecular diversity around functionally key regions, suggesting that the PR-1 domain of CRISPs is important for the recognition of target molecules.

  5. Purification and characterization of a cysteine-rich secretory protein from Philodryas patagoniensis snake venom.

    PubMed

    Peichoto, María E; Mackessy, Stephen P; Teibler, Pamela; Tavares, Flávio L; Burckhardt, Paula L; Breno, María C; Acosta, Ofelia; Santoro, Marcelo L

    2009-07-01

    Cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRiSPs) are widespread in reptile venoms, but most have functions that remain unknown. In the present study we describe the purification and characterization of a CRiSP (patagonin) from the venom of the rear-fanged snake Philodryas patagoniensis, and demonstrate its biological activity. Patagonin is a single-chain protein, exhibiting a molecular mass of 24,858.6 Da, whose NH(2)-terminal and MS/MS-derived sequences are nearly identical to other snake venom CRiSPs. The purified protein hydrolyzed neither azocasein nor fibrinogen, and it could induce no edema, hemorrhage or inhibition of platelet adhesion and aggregation. In addition, patagonin did not inhibit contractions of rat aortic smooth muscle induced by high K(+). However, it caused muscular damage to murine gastrocnemius muscle, an action that has not been previously described for any snake venom CRiSPs. Thus, patagonin will be important for studies of the structure-function and evolutionary relationships of this family of proteins that are widely distributed among snake venoms.

  6. Snake venom. The amino acid sequence of protein A from Dendroaspis polylepis polylepis (black mamba) venom.

    PubMed

    Joubert, F J; Strydom, D J

    1980-12-01

    Protein A from Dendroaspis polylepis polylepis venom comprises 81 amino acids, including ten half-cystine residues. The complete primary structures of protein A and its variant A' were elucidated. The sequences of proteins A and A', which differ in a single position, show no homology with various neurotoxins and non-neurotoxic proteins and represent a new type of elapid venom protein.

  7. Venomics of the Australian eastern brown snake (Pseudonaja textilis): Detection of new venom proteins and splicing variants.

    PubMed

    Viala, Vincent Louis; Hildebrand, Diana; Trusch, Maria; Fucase, Tamara Mieco; Sciani, Juliana Mozer; Pimenta, Daniel Carvalho; Arni, Raghuvir K; Schlüter, Hartmut; Betzel, Christian; Mirtschin, Peter; Dunstan, Nathan; Spencer, Patrick Jack

    2015-12-01

    The eastern brown snake is the predominant cause of snakebites in mainland Australia. Its venom induces defibrination coagulopathy, renal failure and microangiopathic hemolytic anemia. Cardiovascular collapse has been described as an early cause of death in patients, but, so far, the mechanisms involved have not been fully identified. In the present work, we analysed the venome of Pseudonaja textilis by combining high throughput proteomics and transcriptomics, aiming to further characterize the components of this venom. The combination of these techniques in the analysis and identification of toxins, venom proteins and putative toxins allowed the sequence description and the identification of the following: prothrombinase coagulation factors, neurotoxic textilotoxin phospholipase A2 (PLA2) subunits and "acidic PLA2", three-finger toxins (3FTx) and the Kunitz-type protease inhibitor textilinin, venom metalloproteinase, C-type lectins, cysteine rich secretory proteins, calreticulin, dipeptidase 2, as well as evidences of Heloderma lizard peptides. Deep data-mining analysis revealed the secretion of a new transcript variant of venom coagulation factor 5a and the existence of a splicing variant of PLA2 modifying the UTR and signal peptide from a same mature protein. The transcriptome revealed the diversity of transcripts and mutations, and also indicates that splicing variants can be an important source of toxin variation.

  8. Venomics profiling of Thamnodynastes strigatus unveils matrix metalloproteinases and other novel proteins recruited to the toxin arsenal of rear-fanged snakes.

    PubMed

    Ching, Ana T C; Paes Leme, Adriana F; Zelanis, André; Rocha, Marisa M T; Furtado, Maria de Fátima D; Silva, Débora Andrade; Trugilho, Monique R O; da Rocha, Surza L G; Perales, Jonas; Ho, Paulo L; Serrano, Solange M T; Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio L M

    2012-02-03

    Rear-fanged and aglyphous snakes are usually considered not dangerous to humans because of their limited capacity of injecting venom. Therefore, only a few studies have been dedicated to characterizing the venom of the largest parcel of snake fauna. Here, we investigated the venom proteome of the rear-fanged snake Thamnodynastes strigatus , in combination with a transcriptomic evaluation of the venom gland. About 60% of all transcripts code for putative venom components. A striking finding is that the most abundant type of transcript (∼47%) and also the major protein type in the venom correspond to a new kind of matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) that is unrelated to the classical snake venom metalloproteinases found in all snake families. These enzymes were recently suggested as possible venom components, and we show here that they are proteolytically active and probably recruited to venom from a MMP-9 ancestor. Other unusual proteins were suggested to be venom components: a protein related to lactadherin and an EGF repeat-containing transcript. Despite these unusual molecules, seven toxin classes commonly found in typical venomous snakes are also present in the venom. These results support the evidence that the arsenals of these snakes are very diverse and harbor new types of biologically important molecules.

  9. Early significant ontogenetic changes in snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Wray, Kenneth P; Margres, Mark J; Seavy, Margaret; Rokyta, Darin R

    2015-03-01

    Snake venom plays a critical role in food acquisition, digestion, and defense. Venoms are known to change throughout the life of some snake species, but nothing is known about the venom composition of hatchling/neonate snakes prior to and just after their first shedding cycle, despite this being a critical time in the life of the snake. Using a cohort of Crotalus horridus and two cohorts of Crotalus adamanteus, we showed for the first time that snakes undergo significant changes in venom composition after the postnatal shedding event. The number of changes among cohorts ranged widely and there was wide variation in the direction of protein regulation, which appeared to be on a locus-specific level rather than protein-family level. These significant venom composition changes that take place in the first few weeks of life most likely play critical roles in venom economy and resource conservation and may partially explain the rare, post-birth maternal care found in some venomous species.

  10. Unusual stability of messenger RNA in snake venom reveals gene expression dynamics of venom replenishment.

    PubMed

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

    2012-01-01

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

  11. Snake oil and venoms for medical research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolpert, H. D.

    2011-04-01

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

  12. Antitumoral activity of snake venom proteins: new trends in cancer therapy.

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Takeda, Soichi

    2016-01-01

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

  15. Early evolution of the venom system in lizards and snakes.

    PubMed

    Fry, Bryan G; Vidal, Nicolas; Norman, Janette A; Vonk, Freek J; Scheib, Holger; Ramjan, S F Ryan; Kuruppu, Sanjaya; Fung, Kim; Hedges, S Blair; Richardson, Michael K; Hodgson, Wayne C; Ignjatovic, Vera; Summerhayes, Robyn; Kochva, Elazar

    2006-02-02

    Among extant reptiles only two lineages are known to have evolved venom delivery systems, the advanced snakes and helodermatid lizards (Gila Monster and Beaded Lizard). Evolution of the venom system is thought to underlie the impressive radiation of the advanced snakes (2,500 of 3,000 snake species). In contrast, the lizard venom system is thought to be restricted to just two species and to have evolved independently from the snake venom system. Here we report the presence of venom toxins in two additional lizard lineages (Monitor Lizards and Iguania) and show that all lineages possessing toxin-secreting oral glands form a clade, demonstrating a single early origin of the venom system in lizards and snakes. Construction of gland complementary-DNA libraries and phylogenetic analysis of transcripts revealed that nine toxin types are shared between lizards and snakes. Toxinological analyses of venom components from the Lace Monitor Varanus varius showed potent effects on blood pressure and clotting ability, bioactivities associated with a rapid loss of consciousness and extensive bleeding in prey. The iguanian lizard Pogona barbata retains characteristics of the ancestral venom system, namely serial, lobular non-compound venom-secreting glands on both the upper and lower jaws, whereas the advanced snakes and anguimorph lizards (including Monitor Lizards, Gila Monster and Beaded Lizard) have more derived venom systems characterized by the loss of the mandibular (lower) or maxillary (upper) glands. Demonstration that the snakes, iguanians and anguimorphs form a single clade provides overwhelming support for a single, early origin of the venom system in lizards and snakes. These results provide new insights into the evolution of the venom system in squamate reptiles and open new avenues for biomedical research and drug design using hitherto unexplored venom proteins.

  16. Extremely low nerve growth facior (NGF) activity of sea snake (Hydrophiidae) venoms.

    PubMed

    Mariam, Khafizova; Tu, Anthony T

    2002-12-01

    Sea snake venoms contain less protein than those of land snakes (Toom et al., 1969). Sea snake venoms lack arginine ester hydrolyzing activity, whereas those of Crotalidae and Viperidae have such activity (Tu et al., 1966). Sea snakes live in salty water, and their venoms may be different from those of land snakes. Because of the difficulty in obtaining sea snake venoms, information about sea snake venoms is quite incomplete. NGF is commonly present in the venoms of land snakes such as Elapidae, Viperidae, and Crotalidae (Cohen and Levi-Montalcini, 1956; Lipps, 2002). It is therefore of interest to investigate the presence or absence of NGF in sea snake venoms. In order to investigate the presence or absence of NGF, five sea snake venoms were selected. Lapemis hardwickii (Hardwick's sea snake) and Acalyptophis peronii venom were obtained from the Gulf of Thailand. Hydrophis cyanocinctus (common sea snake) and Enhydrina schistosa (beaked sea snake) venom were obtained from the Strait of Malacca. Laticauda semifasciata (broad band blue sea snake) venom was also examined and the venom was obtained from Gato Island in the Philippines.

  17. Species identification from dried snake venom.

    PubMed

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

    2012-05-01

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

  18. Unraveling snake venom complexity with 'omics' approaches: challenges and perspectives.

    PubMed

    Zelanis, André; Tashima, Alexandre Keiji

    2014-09-01

    The study of snake venom proteomes (venomics) has been experiencing a burst of reports, however the comprehensive knowledge of the dynamic range of proteins present within a single venom, the set of post-translational modifications (PTMs) as well as the lack of a comprehensive database related to venom proteins are among the main challenges in venomics research. The phenotypic plasticity in snake venom proteomes together with their inherent toxin proteoform diversity, points out to the use of integrative analysis in order to better understand their actual complexity. In this regard, such a systems venomics task should encompass the integration of data from transcriptomic and proteomic studies (specially the venom gland proteome), the identification of biological PTMs, and the estimation of artifactual proteomes and peptidomes generated by sample handling procedures.

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-08-24

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-06-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1991-12-17

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

  2. [Bites of venomous snakes in Switzerland].

    PubMed

    Plate, Andreas; Kupferschmidt, Hugo; Schneemann, Markus

    2016-06-08

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

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

    PubMed

    Płusa, Tadeusz; Smędzik, Katarzyna

    2015-09-01

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

  4. Crovirin, a Snake Venom Cysteine-Rich Secretory Protein (CRISP) with Promising Activity against Trypanosomes and Leishmania

    PubMed Central

    Adade, Camila M.; Carvalho, Ana Lúcia O.; Tomaz, Marcelo A.; Costa, Tatiana F. R.; Godinho, Joseane L.; Melo, Paulo A.; Lima, Ana Paula C. A.; Rodrigues, Juliany C. F.; Zingali, Russolina B.; Souto-Padrón, Thaïs

    2014-01-01

    Background The neglected human diseases caused by trypanosomatids are currently treated with toxic therapy with limited efficacy. In search for novel anti-trypanosomatid agents, we showed previously that the Crotalus viridis viridis (Cvv) snake venom was active against infective forms of Trypanosoma cruzi. Here, we describe the purification of crovirin, a cysteine-rich secretory protein (CRISP) from Cvv venom with promising activity against trypanosomes and Leishmania. Methodology/Principal Findings Crude venom extract was loaded onto a reverse phase analytical (C8) column using a high performance liquid chromatographer. A linear gradient of water/acetonitrile with 0.1% trifluoroacetic acid was used. The peak containing the isolated protein (confirmed by SDS-PAGE and mass spectrometry) was collected and its protein content was measured. T. cruzi trypomastigotes and amastigotes, L. amazonensis promastigotes and amastigotes and T. brucei rhodesiense procyclic and bloodstream trypomastigotes were challenged with crovirin, whose toxicity was tested against LLC-MK2 cells, peritoneal macrophages and isolated murine extensor digitorum longus muscle. We purified a single protein from Cvv venom corresponding, according to Nano-LC MS/MS sequencing, to a CRISP of 24,893.64 Da, henceforth referred to as crovirin. Human infective trypanosomatid forms, including intracellular amastigotes, were sensitive to crovirin, with low IC50 or LD50 values (1.10–2.38 µg/ml). A considerably higher concentration (20 µg/ml) of crovirin was required to elicit only limited toxicity on mammalian cells. Conclusions This is the first report of CRISP anti-protozoal activity, and suggests that other members of this family might have potential as drugs or drug leads for the development of novel agents against trypanosomatid-borne neglected diseases. PMID:25330220

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-31

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-06-24

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

  7. Cysteine-rich secretory proteins in snake venoms form high affinity complexes with human and porcine beta-microseminoproteins.

    PubMed

    Hansson, Karin; Kjellberg, Margareta; Fernlund, Per

    2009-08-01

    BETA-microseminoprotein (MSP), a 10 kDa protein in human seminal plasma, binds human cysteine-rich secretory protein-3 (CRISP-3) with high affinity. CRISP-3 is a member of the family of CRISPs, which are widespread among animals. In this work we show that human as well as porcine MSP binds catrin, latisemin, pseudecin, and triflin, which are CRISPs present in the venoms of the snakes Crotalus atrox, Laticauda semifasciata, Pseudechis porphyriacus, and Trimeresurus flavoviridis, respectively. The CRISPs were purified from the venoms by affinity chromatography on a human MSP column and their identities were settled by gel electrophoresis and mass spectrometry. Their interactions with human and porcine MSPs were studied with size exclusion chromatography and surface plasmon resonance measurements. The binding affinities at 25 degrees C were between 10(-10)M and 10(-7)M for most of the interactions, with higher affinities for the interactions with porcine MSP compared to human MSP and with Elapidae CRISPs compared to Viperidae CRISPs. The high affinities of the bindings in spite of the differences in amino acid sequence between the MSPs as well as between the CRISPs indicate that the binding is tolerant to amino acid sequence variation and raise the question how universal this cross-species reaction between MSPs and CRISPs is.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  9. Anticoagulant and antifibrinogenolytic properties of the aqueous extract from Bauhinia forficata against snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Oliveira, Clayton Z; Maiorano, Victor A; Marcussi, Silvana; Sant'ana, Carolina D; Januário, Ana H; Lourenço, Miriam V; Sampaio, Suely V; França, Suzelei C; Pereira, Paulo S; Soares, Andreimar M

    2005-04-08

    The aqueous extract from aerial parts of Bauhinia forficata was able to neutralize the clotting activity induced by Bothrops and Crotalus crude venoms. The clotting time, upon human plasma, induced by B. moojeni venom was significantly prolonged. Clotting and fibrinogenolytic activities induced by isolated thrombin-like enzyme from Bothrops jararacussu were totally inhibited after incubation at different ratios. The extract was not able to neutralize the hemorrhagic activity induced by an Bothrops venoms, but it efficiently inhibited the edema induced by Crotalus durissus terrificus venom and isolated PLA2s. In addition, it did not inhibited the phospholipase A2 activity of Bothrops snake venoms. Interaction studies between Bauhinia forficata extract and snake venoms, when analyzed by SDS-PAGE, did not reveal any apparent degradation of the venom proteins. This extract is a promising source of natural inhibitors of serine-proteases involved in blood clotting disturbances induced by snake venoms.

  10. Understanding Biological Roles of Venoms Among the Caenophidia: The Importance of Rear-Fanged Snakes.

    PubMed

    Mackessy, Stephen P; Saviola, Anthony J

    2016-11-01

    Snake venoms represent an adaptive trophic response to the challenges confronting a limbless predator for overcoming combative prey, and this chemical means of subduing prey shows several dominant phenotypes. Many front-fanged snakes, particularly vipers, feed on various vertebrate and invertebrate prey species, and some of their venom components (e.g., metalloproteinases, cobratoxin) appear to have been selected for "broad-brush" incapacitation of different prey taxa. Using proteomic and genomic techniques, the compositional diversity of front-fanged snakes is becoming well characterized; however, this is not the case for most rear-fanged colubroid snakes. Because these species consume a high diversity of prey, and because venoms are primarily a trophic adaptation, important clues for understanding specific selective pressures favoring venom component composition will be found among rear-fanged snake venoms. Rear-fanged snakes typically (but not always) produce venoms with lower complexity than front-fanged snakes, and there are even fewer dominant (and, arguably, biologically most relevant) venom protein families. We have demonstrated taxon-specific toxic effects, where lizards and birds show high susceptibility while mammals are largely unaffected, for both Old World and New World rear-fanged snakes, strongly indicating a causal link between toxin evolution and prey preference. New data are presented on myotoxin a, showing that the extremely rapid paralysis induced by this rattlesnake toxin is specific for rodents, and that myotoxin a is ineffectual against lizards. Relatively few rear-fanged snake venoms have been characterized, and basic natural history data are largely lacking, but directed sampling of specialized species indicates that novel compounds are likely among these specialists, particularly among those species feeding on invertebrate prey such as scorpions and centipedes. Because many of the more than 2200 species of colubroid snakes are rear

  11. Investigating possible biological targets of Bj-CRP, the first cysteine-rich secretory protein (CRISP) isolated from Bothrops jararaca snake venom.

    PubMed

    Lodovicho, Marina E; Costa, Tássia R; Bernardes, Carolina P; Menaldo, Danilo L; Zoccal, Karina F; Carone, Sante E; Rosa, José C; Pucca, Manuela B; Cerni, Felipe A; Arantes, Eliane C; Tytgat, Jan; Faccioli, Lúcia H; Pereira-Crott, Luciana S; Sampaio, Suely V

    2017-01-04

    Cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRISPs) are commonly described as part of the protein content of snake venoms, nevertheless, so far, little is known about their biological targets and functions. Our study describes the isolation and characterization of Bj-CRP, the first CRISP isolated from Bothrops jararaca snake venom, also aiming at the identification of possible targets for its actions. Bj-CRP was purified using three chromatographic steps (Sephacryl S-200, Source 15Q and C18) and showed to be an acidic protein of 24.6kDa with high sequence identity to other snake venom CRISPs. This CRISP was devoid of proteolytic, hemorrhagic or coagulant activities, and it did not affect the currents from 13 voltage-gated potassium channel isoforms. Conversely, Bj-CRP induced inflammatory responses characterized by increase of leukocytes, mainly neutrophils, after 1 and 4h of its injection in the peritoneal cavity of mice, also stimulating the production of IL-6. Bj-CRP also acted on the human complement system, modulating some of the activation pathways and acting directly on important components (C3 and C4), thus inducing the generation of anaphylatoxins (C3a, C4a and C5a). Therefore, our results for Bj-CRP open up prospects for better understanding this class of toxins and its biological actions.

  12. Effect of suramin on myotoxicity of some crotalid snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Arruda, E Z; Silva, N M V; Moraes, R A M; Melo, P A

    2002-06-01

    We investigated the protective effect of suramin, an enzyme inhibitor and an uncoupler of G protein from receptors, on the myotoxic activity in mice of different crotalid snake venoms (A.c. laticinctus, C.v. viridis, C.d. terrificus, B. jararacussu, B. moojeni, B. alternatus, B. jararaca, L. muta). Myotoxicity was evaluated in vivo by injecting im the venoms (0.5 or 1.0 mg/kg) dissolved in physiological saline solution (0.1 ml) and measuring plasma creatine kinase (CK) activity. Two experimental approaches were used in mice (N = 5 for each group). In protocol A, 1 mg of each venom was incubated with 1.0 mg suramin (15 min, 37 degrees C, in vitro), and then injected im into the mice at a dose of 1.0 mg/kg (in vivo). In protocol B, venoms, 1.0 mg/kg, were injected im 15 min prior to suramin (1.0 mg/kg, iv). Before and 2 h after the im injection blood was collected by orbital puncture. Plasma was separated and stored at 4 degrees C for determination of CK activity using a diagnostic kit from Sigma. Preincubation of some venoms (C.v. viridis, A.c. laticinctus, C.d. terrificus and B. jararacussu) with suramin reduced (37-76%) the increase in plasma CK, except for B. alternatus, B. jararaca or L. muta venoms. Injection of suramin after the venom partially protected (34-51%) against the myotoxicity of B. jararacussu, A.c. laticinctus and C.d. terrificus venom, and did not protect against C.v. viridis, L. muta, B. moojeni, B. alternatus or B. jararaca venoms. These results show that suramin has an antimyotoxic effect against some, but not all the North and South American crotalid snake venoms studied here.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  14. Restriction and recruitment-gene duplication and the origin and evolution of snake venom toxins.

    PubMed

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

    2014-08-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-08-26

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

  17. A Heterologous Multiepitope DNA Prime/Recombinant Protein Boost Immunisation Strategy for the Development of an Antiserum against Micrurus corallinus (Coral Snake) Venom

    PubMed Central

    Ramos, Henrique Roman; Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio de Loiola M.; Novo, Juliana Branco; Castro, Karen; Duarte, Clara Guerra; Machado-de-Ávila, Ricardo A.; Chavez-Olortegui, Carlos; Ho, Paulo Lee

    2016-01-01

    Background Envenoming by coral snakes (Elapidae: Micrurus), although not abundant, represent a serious health threat in the Americas, especially because antivenoms are scarce. The development of adequate amounts of antielapidic serum for the treatment of accidents caused by snakes like Micrurus corallinus is a challenging task due to characteristics such as low venom yield, fossorial habit, relatively small sizes and ophiophagous diet. These features make it difficult to capture and keep these snakes in captivity for venom collection. Furthermore, there are reports of antivenom scarcity in USA, leading to an increase in morbidity and mortality, with patients needing to be intubated and ventilated while the toxin wears off. The development of an alternative method for the production of an antielapidic serum, with no need for snake collection and maintenance in captivity, would be a plausible solution for the antielapidic serum shortage. Methods and Findings In this work we describe the mapping, by the SPOT-synthesis technique, of potential B-cell epitopes from five putative toxins from M. corallinus, which were used to design two multiepitope DNA strings for the genetic immunisation of female BALB/c mice. Results demonstrate that sera obtained from animals that were genetically immunised with these multiepitope constructs, followed by booster doses of recombinant proteins lead to a 60% survival in a lethal dose neutralisation assay. Conclusion Here we describe that the genetic immunisation with a synthetic multiepitope gene followed by booster doses with recombinant protein is a promising approach to develop an alternative antielapidic serum against M. corallinus venom without the need of collection and the very challenging maintenance of these snakes in captivity. PMID:26938217

  18. Strong and widespread action of site-specific positive selection in the snake venom Kunitz/BPTI protein family

    PubMed Central

    Župunski, Vera; Kordiš, Dušan

    2016-01-01

    S1 family of serine peptidases is the largest family of peptidases. They are specifically inhibited by the Kunitz/BPTI inhibitors. Kunitz domain is characterized by the compact 3D structure with the most important inhibitory loops for the inhibition of S1 peptidases. In the present study we analysed the action of site-specific positive selection and its impact on the structurally and functionally important parts of the snake venom Kunitz/BPTI family of proteins. By using numerous models we demonstrated the presence of large numbers of site-specific positively selected sites that can reach between 30–50% of the Kunitz domain. The mapping of the positively selected sites on the 3D model of Kunitz/BPTI inhibitors has shown that these sites are located in the inhibitory loops 1 and 2, but also in the Kunitz scaffold. Amino acid replacements have been found exclusively on the surface, and the vast majority of replacements are causing the change of the charge. The consequence of these replacements is the change in the electrostatic potential on the surface of the Kunitz/BPTI proteins that may play an important role in the precise targeting of these inhibitors into the active site of S1 family of serine peptidases. PMID:27841308

  19. Unraveling the processing and activation of snake venom metalloproteinases.

    PubMed

    Portes-Junior, José A; Yamanouye, Norma; Carneiro, Sylvia M; Knittel, Paloma S; Sant'Anna, Sávio S; Nogueira, Fabio C S; Junqueira, Magno; Magalhães, Geraldo S; Domont, Gilberto B; Moura-da-Silva, Ana M

    2014-07-03

    Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) are zinc-dependent enzymes responsible for most symptoms of human envenoming. Like matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) and a disintegrin and metalloproteinase (ADAM) proteins, SVMPs are synthesized as zymogens, and enzyme activation is regulated by hydrolysis of their prodomain, but the processing of SVMPs is still unclear. In this study, we attempted to identify the presence of prodomain in different compartments of snake venom glands as zymogens or in the free form to elucidate some mechanism involved in SVMP activation. Using antibodies obtained by immunization with a recombinant prodomain, bands of zymogen molecular mass and prodomain peptides were detected mostly in gland extracts all along the venom production cycle and in the venom collected from the lumen at the peak of venom production. Prodomain was detected in secretory cells mostly in the secretory vesicles near the Golgi. We hypothesize that the processing of SVMPs starts within secretory vesicles and continues in the lumen of the venom gland just after enzyme secretion and involves different steps compared to ADAMs and MMPs but can be used as a model for studying the relevance of peptides resulting from prodomain processing and degradation for controlling the activity of metalloproteinases.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  1. Venom down under: dynamic evolution of Australian elapid snake toxins.

    PubMed

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

    2013-12-18

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

  2. A comparative in silico characterization of functional and physicochemical properties of 3FTx (three finger toxin) proteins from four venomous snakes

    PubMed Central

    Roly, Zahida Yesmin; Islam, Md Mahmudul; Reza, Md Abu

    2014-01-01

    Snake venom is an abundant resource of diverse pharmacologically bioactive proteins and peptides and a good natural source of drug lead compounds and used as important research tools in the field of toxicology, pharmacology and neuroscience. Three finger toxins (3FTx) is an important super-family of snake venom proteins which has a conserved three finger like appearance in three dimensional structures. Members of 3FTx family show a wide array of pharmacological effects by targeting different receptors and ion channels with high specificity and many of them are being investigated as potential drug target. Therefore, with a vision to verdict a new edge and attempt we determined the amino acid compositional (%) profile, physiochemical properties, secondary structural and functional analysis and phylogenetic relationship of three finger toxins present in four different elapid snake species namely, Naja naja, Astrotia stokesii, Hydrophis cyanocintus and Pelamis platura using different bioinformatics tools. From the outcome of the current studies, it will be possible to know about a range of biological functions which are responsible mainly for the glowing amino acid composition profile of these proteins. Amino acid composition (%) profile although represents differential amount of different amino acid residues which encompasses a family precise model but all the protein sequence have a conserved amount of cysteine. The analysis of physicochemical properties can be used as a basic approach to contribute in developing rational drug through protein engineering and understanding different physiological function which will be beneficial for the welfare of human being. PMID:24966535

  3. Preclinical testing of Peruvian anti-bothropic anti-venom against Bothrops andianus snake venom.

    PubMed

    Schneider, Francisco S; Starling, Maria C; Duarte, Clara G; Machado de Avila, Ricardo; Kalapothakis, Evanguedes; Silva Suarez, Walter; Tintaya, Benigno; Flores Garrido, Karin; Seraylan Ormachea, Silvia; Yarleque, Armando; Bonilla, César; Chávez-Olórtegui, Carlos

    2012-11-01

    Bothrops andianus is a venomous snake found in the area of Machu Picchu (Peru). Its venom is not included in the antigenic pool used for production of the Peruvian anti-bothropic anti-venom. B. andianus venom can elicit many biological effects such as hemorrhage, hemolysis, proteolytic activity and lethality. The Peruvian anti-bothropic anti-venom displays consistent cross-reactivity with B. andianus venom, by ELISA and Western Blotting and is also effective in neutralizing the venom's toxic activities.

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-12-17

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  6. Snakebite and Snake Venom Ophthalmia

    PubMed Central

    Ajao, O.G.; Hawtin, J.G.

    1980-01-01

    Snakebite is not necessarily snake envenomation. Of about 2,500 known species of snakes, only about 40 are regarded as being dangerous. A snake will not go out of its way to attack a person and even in defense, snakes bite humans usually to dissuade and not to kill. Early surgical excision of the bitten area is regarded as a most important aspect in the management of a poisonous snakebite, and because of the side effects of horse serum, cautious use of antivenin is advised only in cases of severe systemic poisoning. When a snake spits into the eyes, prompt treatment is indicated to prevent future blindness. ImagesFigure 1Figure 2Figure 3 PMID:6968356

  7. Mast Cells Can Enhance Resistance to Snake and Honeybee Venoms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Metz, Martin; Piliponsky, Adrian M.; Chen, Ching-Cheng; Lammel, Verena; Åbrink, Magnus; Pejler, Gunnar; Tsai, Mindy; Galli, Stephen J.

    2006-07-01

    Snake or honeybee envenomation can cause substantial morbidity and mortality, and it has been proposed that the activation of mast cells by snake or insect venoms can contribute to these effects. We show, in contrast, that mast cells can significantly reduce snake-venom-induced pathology in mice, at least in part by releasing carboxypeptidase A and possibly other proteases, which can degrade venom components. Mast cells also significantly reduced the morbidity and mortality induced by honeybee venom. These findings identify a new biological function for mast cells in enhancing resistance to the morbidity and mortality induced by animal venoms.

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

    PubMed

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

    2010-11-01

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

  9. Inhibition of Hemorragic Snake Venom Components: Old and New Approaches

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

    Snake venoms are complex toxin mixtures. Viperidae and Crotalidae venoms, which are hemotoxic, are responsible for most of the envenomations around the world. Administration of antivenins aimed at the neutralization of toxins in humans is prone to potential risks. Neutralization of snake venom toxins has been achieved through different approaches: plant extracts have been utilized in etnomedicine. Direct electric current from low voltage showed neutralizing properties against venom phospholipase A2 and metalloproteases. This mini-review summarizes new achievements in venom key component inhibition. A deeper knowledge of alternative ways to inhibit venom toxins may provide supplemental treatments to serum therapy. PMID:22069593

  10. Modulation of integrin-binding selectivity by mutation within the RGD-loop of snake venom proteins: a novel drug development approach.

    PubMed

    Lu, X; Lu, D; Scully, M F; Kakkar, V V

    2003-06-01

    Integrins are a family of heterodimeric class I transmembrane receptors, many of which bind to the RGD sequence in adhesive proteins and mediate the adhesive interactions of a variety of cells. The RGD motif has also been found in snake venom proteins that specifically inhibit integrin binding function and serve as potent integrin antagonists. The majority of these proteins interact with beta1 and beta3 associated integrins and their potency is at least 500-2000 times higher than short RGD peptides. Structural and functional studies suggest that the inhibitory potency of these proteins lies in subtle positional requirements of the tripeptide RGD that is harboured in a defined flexible loop. The integrin-binding specificity and selectivity of each of the proteins is controlled by amino acid residues in this loop in close vicinity to the RGD-motif. The review includes an overview of the structure and function of snake-venom integrin antagonists. The ability of these proteins to control platelet aggregation, cell adhesion and ligand binding is compared to that of short linear, cyclic RGD-peptides and RGD-containing proteins and the influence of modulation of amino acid residues flanking the RGD motif is also considered. The review is intended to provide insight into the development of novel inhibitors as drugs.

  11. The humoral immune response induced by snake venom toxins.

    PubMed

    da Silva, Wilmar Dias; Tambourgi, Denise V

    2011-10-01

    This review summarizes the key contributions to our knowledge regarding the immune response induced by snake venom toxins, focusing particularly on the production of antibodies and their venom-neutralizing effects. We cover the past and present state of the art of anti-snake venom production, followed by an overview of the venomous snakes and their venoms. The toxic properties of relevant snake venom toxins are approached in some details, with particular emphasis on the molecular domains responsible for binding to cells or plasma components in victims. The interactions of these domains are also reviewed, particularly the putatively relevant epitopes, along with the immune system and the resulting antibodies. We also review trials aimed at reducing the quantities of non-relevant antibodies in the antivenoms by substituting whole venoms with purified toxins to immunize animals, or the immunogenicity of the heterologous antivenom antibodies by humanizing their molecules.

  12. Snake Venom Components and Their Cross Reactivity: A Short Review

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1988-10-01

    PLA 2), L-amino acid oxidase, and phosphodiesterase. PLA2 is a protein of approximately 14000 molecular weight, which hydrolizes phosphatidylcholine...to lysophosphatidylcholine and a fatty acid (22). This activity causes the destruction of cell membranes, leading to hemolysis. In the last decade...flavoviridis, Bothrops asper, Pseudoechis australis, and Enhydrina schistosa (20, 33, 42, 43, 54 56). L-amino acid oxidase is detected in venomous snakes

  13. Snake venoms. The amino-acid sequence of protein S5C4 from Dendroaspis jamesoni kaimosae (Jameson's mamba) venom.

    PubMed

    Joubert, F J; Strydom, A J; Taljaard, N

    1978-06-01

    A major component (S5C4) was purified from Jameson's mamba by gel filtration on Sephadex G-50 and by ion-exchange chromotography on CM-cellulose. Protein S5C4 contains 60 amino acid residues and is cross-linked by four intrachain disulphide bridges. The complete primary structure of the protein has been elucidated. The toxicities, the immunochemical properties, the sequence and the invariant amino acid residues of protein S5C4 resemble subgroup II of the angusticeps-type proteins.

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

    PubMed

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

    2009-01-30

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

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

    PubMed Central

    2005-01-01

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

  16. Applications of snake venom components to modulate integrin activities in cell-matrix interactions

    PubMed Central

    Marcinkiewicz, Cezary

    2013-01-01

    Snake venom proteins are broadly investigated in the different areas of life science. Direct interaction of these compounds with cells may involve a variety of mechanisms that result in diverse cellular responses leading to the activation or blocking of physiological functions of the cell. In this review, the snake venom components interacting with integrins will be characterized in context of their effect on cellular response. Currently, two major families of snake venom proteins are considered as integrin-binding molecules. The most attention has been devoted to the disintegrin family, which binds certain types of integrins through specific motifs recognized as a tri-peptide structurally localized on an integrin-binding loop. Other snake venom integrin-binding proteins belong to the C-type lectin family. Snake venom molecules bind to the cellular integrins resulting in a modulation of cell signaling and in consequence, the regulation of cell proliferation, migration and apoptosis. Therefore, snake venom research on the integrin-binding molecules may have significance in biomedicine and basic cell biology. PMID:23811033

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-06-07

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

  1. Full-Length Venom Protein cDNA Sequences from Venom-Derived mRNA: Exploring Compositional Variation and Adaptive Multigene Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Modahl, Cassandra M.; Mackessy, Stephen P.

    2016-01-01

    Envenomation of humans by snakes is a complex and continuously evolving medical emergency, and treatment is made that much more difficult by the diverse biochemical composition of many venoms. Venomous snakes and their venoms also provide models for the study of molecular evolutionary processes leading to adaptation and genotype-phenotype relationships. To compare venom complexity and protein sequences, venom gland transcriptomes are assembled, which usually requires the sacrifice of snakes for tissue. However, toxin transcripts are also present in venoms, offering the possibility of obtaining cDNA sequences directly from venom. This study provides evidence that unknown full-length venom protein transcripts can be obtained from the venoms of multiple species from all major venomous snake families. These unknown venom protein cDNAs are obtained by the use of primers designed from conserved signal peptide sequences within each venom protein superfamily. This technique was used to assemble a partial venom gland transcriptome for the Middle American Rattlesnake (Crotalus simus tzabcan) by amplifying sequences for phospholipases A2, serine proteases, C-lectins, and metalloproteinases from within venom. Phospholipase A2 sequences were also recovered from the venoms of several rattlesnakes and an elapid snake (Pseudechis porphyriacus), and three-finger toxin sequences were recovered from multiple rear-fanged snake species, demonstrating that the three major clades of advanced snakes (Elapidae, Viperidae, Colubridae) have stable mRNA present in their venoms. These cDNA sequences from venom were then used to explore potential activities derived from protein sequence similarities and evolutionary histories within these large multigene superfamilies. Venom-derived sequences can also be used to aid in characterizing venoms that lack proteomic profiles and identify sequence characteristics indicating specific envenomation profiles. This approach, requiring only venom, provides

  2. Full-Length Venom Protein cDNA Sequences from Venom-Derived mRNA: Exploring Compositional Variation and Adaptive Multigene Evolution.

    PubMed

    Modahl, Cassandra M; Mackessy, Stephen P

    2016-06-01

    Envenomation of humans by snakes is a complex and continuously evolving medical emergency, and treatment is made that much more difficult by the diverse biochemical composition of many venoms. Venomous snakes and their venoms also provide models for the study of molecular evolutionary processes leading to adaptation and genotype-phenotype relationships. To compare venom complexity and protein sequences, venom gland transcriptomes are assembled, which usually requires the sacrifice of snakes for tissue. However, toxin transcripts are also present in venoms, offering the possibility of obtaining cDNA sequences directly from venom. This study provides evidence that unknown full-length venom protein transcripts can be obtained from the venoms of multiple species from all major venomous snake families. These unknown venom protein cDNAs are obtained by the use of primers designed from conserved signal peptide sequences within each venom protein superfamily. This technique was used to assemble a partial venom gland transcriptome for the Middle American Rattlesnake (Crotalus simus tzabcan) by amplifying sequences for phospholipases A2, serine proteases, C-lectins, and metalloproteinases from within venom. Phospholipase A2 sequences were also recovered from the venoms of several rattlesnakes and an elapid snake (Pseudechis porphyriacus), and three-finger toxin sequences were recovered from multiple rear-fanged snake species, demonstrating that the three major clades of advanced snakes (Elapidae, Viperidae, Colubridae) have stable mRNA present in their venoms. These cDNA sequences from venom were then used to explore potential activities derived from protein sequence similarities and evolutionary histories within these large multigene superfamilies. Venom-derived sequences can also be used to aid in characterizing venoms that lack proteomic profiles and identify sequence characteristics indicating specific envenomation profiles. This approach, requiring only venom, provides

  3. Effects of gamma radiation on snake venoms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nascimento, N.; Spencer, P. J.; Andrade, H. F.; Guarnieri, M. C.; Rogero, J. R.

    1998-06-01

    Ionizing radiation is able to detoxify several venoms, including snake venoms, without affecting significantly their immunogenic properties. Inn order to elucidate this phenomena, we conceived a comparative pharmacological study between native and irradiated (2,000 Gy) crotoxin, the main toxin of the South American rattlesnake Crotalus durissus terrificus. Crotoxin was isolated and purified by molecular exclusion chromatography, pI precipitation and, susbequentely submitted to irradiaiton. Gel filtration of the irradiated toxin resulted in some high molecular weight aggregates formation. Crotoxin toxicity decreased two folds after irradiation, as determined by LD 50 in mice. Native and irradiated crotoxin biodistribution ocured in the same general manner, with renal elimination. However, in contrast to irradiated crotoxin, the native form was initially retained in kidneys. A later concentration (2-3 hr) appeared in phagocytic mononuclear cells rich organs (liver and spleen) and neural junction rich organs (muscle and brain).

  4. Antibacterial properties of KwaZulu natal snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Blaylock, R S

    2000-11-01

    The objective was to ascertain whether local snake venoms have antibacterial properties. The venoms of the common night adder (Causus rhombeatus), gaboon adder (Bitis gabonica), puff adder (Bitis arietans), black mamba (Dendroaspis polylepis), eastern green mamba (Dendroaspis augusticeps), forest cobra (Naja melanoleuca), snouted cobra (Naja annulifera) and Mozambique spitting cobra (Naja mossambica) were collected and, by gel diffusion, tested against the bacteria Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeriginosa, Bacteriodes fragilis, Bacteroides intermedius, Clostridium sordellii and Clostridium perfringens. All snake venoms showed antibacterial activity, with the adders showing most activity against the aerobes while the cobras showed lesser, but equal activity against the aerobes and anaerobes. Black mamba venom only showed activity against C. perfringens. In conclusion, local snake venoms have antibacterial properties which are dependent on the venom and bacterial type; and in the Naja spp., for anaerobic bacteria, diminish in winter. There is liable to be more than one toxin component responsible.

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

    PubMed

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

    2009-06-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  7. Snake venomics of the lancehead pitviper Bothrops asper: geographic, individual, and ontogenetic variations.

    PubMed

    Alape-Girón, Alberto; Sanz, Libia; Escolano, José; Flores-Díaz, Marietta; Madrigal, Marvin; Sasa, Mahmood; Calvete, Juan J

    2008-08-01

    We report the comparative proteomic characterization of the venoms of adult and newborn specimens of the lancehead pitviper Bothrops asper from two geographically isolated populations from the Caribbean and the Pacific versants of Costa Rica. The crude venoms were fractionated by reverse-phase HPLC, followed by analysis of each chromatographic fraction by SDS-PAGE, N-terminal sequencing, MALDI-TOF mass fingerprinting, and collision-induced dissociation tandem mass spectrometry of tryptic peptides. The two B. asper populations, separated since the late Miocene or early Pliocene (8-5 mya) by the Guanacaste Mountain Range, Central Mountain Range, and Talamanca Mountain Range, contain both identical and different (iso)enzymes from the PLA 2, serine proteinase, and SVMP families. Using a similarity coefficient, we estimate that the similarity of venom proteins between the two B. asper populations may be around 52%. Compositional differences between venoms among different geographic regions may be due to evolutionary environmental pressure acting on isolated populations. To investigate venom variability among specimens from the two B. asper populations, the reverse-phase HPLC protein profiles of 15 venoms from Caribbean specimens and 11 venoms from snakes from Pacific regions were compared. Within each B. asper geographic populations, all major venom protein families appeared to be subjected to individual variations. The occurrence of intraspecific individual allopatric variability highlights the concept that a species, B. asper in our case, should be considered as a group of metapopulations. Analysis of pooled venoms of neonate specimens from Caribbean and Pacific regions with those of adult snakes from the same geographical habitat revealed prominent ontogenetic changes in both geographical populations. Major ontogenetic changes appear to be a shift from a PIII-SVMP-rich to a PI-SVMP-rich venom and the secretion in adults of a distinct set of PLA 2 molecules than in

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

  9. Evolution of an arsenal: structural and functional diversification of the venom system in the advanced snakes (Caenophidia).

    PubMed

    Fry, Bryan G; Scheib, Holger; van der Weerd, Louise; Young, Bruce; McNaughtan, Judith; Ramjan, S F Ryan; Vidal, Nicolas; Poelmann, Robert E; Norman, Janette A

    2008-02-01

    Venom is a key innovation underlying the evolution of advanced snakes (Caenophidia). Despite this, very little is known about venom system structural diversification, toxin recruitment event timings, or toxin molecular evolution. A multidisciplinary approach was used to examine the diversification of the venom system and associated toxins across the full range of the approximately 100 million-year-old advanced snake clade with a particular emphasis upon families that have not secondarily evolved a front-fanged venom system ( approximately 80% of the 2500 species). Analysis of cDNA libraries revealed complex venom transcriptomes containing multiple toxin types including three finger toxins, cobra venom factor, cysteine-rich secretory protein, hyaluronidase, kallikrein, kunitz, lectin, matrix metalloprotease, phospholipase A(2), snake venom metalloprotease/a disintegrin and metalloprotease, and waprin. High levels of sequence diversity were observed, including mutations in structural and functional residues, changes in cysteine spacing, and major deletions/truncations. Morphological analysis comprising gross dissection, histology, and magnetic resonance imaging also demonstrated extensive modification of the venom system architecture in non-front-fanged snakes in contrast to the conserved structure of the venom system within the independently evolved front-fanged elapid or viperid snakes. Further, a reduction in the size and complexity of the venom system was observed in species in which constriction has been secondarily evolved as the preferred method of prey capture or dietary preference has switched from live prey to eggs or to slugs/snails. Investigation of the timing of toxin recruitment events across the entire advanced snake radiation indicates that the evolution of advanced venom systems in three front-fanged lineages is associated with recruitment of new toxin types or explosive diversification of existing toxin types. These results support the role of venom

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

    PubMed

    Dhananjaya, B L; Sivashankari, P R

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  12. Label-Free (XIC) Quantification of Venom Procoagulant and Neurotoxin Expression in Related Australian Elapid Snakes Gives Insight into Venom Toxicity Evolution.

    PubMed

    Skejic, Jure; Steer, David L; Dunstan, Nathan; Hodgson, Wayne C

    2015-11-06

    This study demonstrates a direct role of venom protein expression alteration in the evolution of snake venom toxicity. Avian skeletal muscle contractile response to exogenously administered acetylcholine is completely inhibited upon exposure to South Australian and largely preserved following exposure to Queensland eastern brown snake Pseudonaja textilis venom, indicating potent postsynaptic neurotoxicity of the former and lack thereof of the latter venom. Label-free quantitative proteomics reveals extremely large differences in the expression of postsynaptic three-finger α-neurotoxins in these venoms, explaining the difference in the muscle contractile response and suggesting that the type of toxicity induced by venom can be modified by altered expression of venom proteins. Furthermore, the onset of neuromuscular paralysis in the rat phrenic nerve-diaphragm preparation occurs sooner upon exposure to the venom (10 μg/mL) with high expression of α-neurotoxins than the venoms containing predominately presynaptic β-neurotoxins. The study also finds that the onset of rat plasma coagulation is faster following exposure to the venoms with higher expression of venom prothrombin activator subunits. This is the first quantitative proteomic study that uses extracted ion chromatogram peak areas (MS1 XIC) of distinct homologous tryptic peptides to directly show the differences in the expression of venom proteins.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2007-01-01

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

  14. The relaxant effect of the Montivipera bornmuelleri snake venom on vascular contractility

    PubMed Central

    Accary, Claudine; Hraoui-Bloquet, Souad; Sadek, Riyad; Alameddine, Asma; Fajloun, Ziad; Desfontis, Jean-Claude; Mallem, Yassine

    2016-01-01

    Molecular richness of snake venoms is an important source of proteins and toxins with potent effects on the cardiovascular system. The alteration of the vascular system in the victim after a venomous snake bite is usually expressed by a significant decrease in blood pressure. Therefore, exploring snake venom to extract and characterize its biomolecules is of considerable medical interest, and formed the basis of this study. We assessed the potential of the venom of Montivipera bornmuelleri, a viper from Lebanon, to induce relaxant effect on isolated Wistar rat aorta via several mechanisms of action. The overall hypotensive effect of Montivipera bornmuelleri venom results from its synergetic action on different channels for the reduction of blood pressure. By actions of its metalloproteinases and phospholipase A2, the venom may induce the production of nitric oxide acting accordingly a vasodilator effect. It could act on the voltage-dependent potassium channels and/or the L-type calcium channels, inhibiting angiotensin converting enzyme and/or inhibiting the α1-adrenoceptors. This work demonstrates vasorelaxant effect of the Montivipera bornmuelleri venom acting on different pathways, reducing blood pressure. PMID:27826409

  15. Bv8, a small protein from frog skin and its homologue from snake venom induce hyperalgesia in rats.

    PubMed

    Mollay, C; Wechselberger, C; Mignogna, G; Negri, L; Melchiorri, P; Barra, D; Kreil, G

    1999-06-18

    From skin secretions of Bombina variegata and Bombina bombina, we isolated a small protein termed Bv8. The sequence of its 77 amino acids was established by peptide analysis and by cDNA cloning of the Bv8 precursor. Bv8 stimulates the contraction of the guinea-pig ileum at nanomolar concentrations. The contraction is not inhibited by a variety of antagonists. Injection of a few micrograms of Bv8 into the brain of rats elicits, as assessed by the tail-flick test and paw pressure threshold, a marked hyperalgesia which lasts for about 1 h. Bv8 is related to protein A, a component of the venom of the black mamba. After i.c.v. injection, protein A is even more active than Bv8 in inducing hyperalgesia.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    1998-05-01

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

  18. Snake venomics of Bothrops punctatus, a semiarboreal pitviper species from Antioquia, Colombia.

    PubMed

    Fernández Culma, Maritza; Andrés Pereañez, Jaime; Núñez Rangel, Vitelbina; Lomonte, Bruno

    2014-01-01

    Bothrops punctatus is an endangered, semi-arboreal pitviper species distributed in Panamá, Colombia, and Ecuador, whose venom is poorly characterized. In the present work, the protein composition of this venom was profiled using the 'snake venomics' analytical strategy. Decomplexation of the crude venom by RP-HPLC and SDS-PAGE, followed by tandem mass spectrometry of tryptic digests, showed that it consists of proteins assigned to at least nine snake toxin families. Metalloproteinases are predominant in this secretion (41.5% of the total proteins), followed by C-type lectin/lectin-like proteins (16.7%), bradykinin-potentiating peptides (10.7%), phospholipases A2 (93%), serine proteinases (5.4%), disintegrins (38%), L-amino acid oxidases (3.1%), vascular endothelial growth factors (17%), and cysteine-rich secretory proteins (1.2%). Altogether, 6.6% of the proteins were not identified. In vitro, the venom exhibited proteolytic, phospholipase A2, and L-amino acid oxidase activities, as well as angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE)-inhibitory activity, in agreement with the obtained proteomic profile. Cytotoxic activity on murine C2C12 myoblasts was negative, suggesting that the majority of venom phospholipases A2 likely belong to the acidic type, which often lack major toxic effects. The protein composition of B. punctatus venom shows a good correlation with toxic activities here and previously reported, and adds further data in support of the wide diversity of strategies that have evolved in snake venoms to subdue prey, as increasingly being revealed by proteomic analyses.

  19. Snake venomics of monocled cobra (Naja kaouthia) and investigation of human IgG response against venom toxins.

    PubMed

    Laustsen, Andreas H; Gutiérrez, José María; Lohse, Brian; Rasmussen, Arne R; Fernández, Julián; Milbo, Christina; Lomonte, Bruno

    2015-06-01

    The venom proteome of the monocled cobra, Naja kaouthia, from Thailand, was characterized by RP-HPLC, SDS-PAGE, and MALDI-TOF-TOF analyses, yielding 38 different proteins that were either identified or assigned to families. Estimation of relative protein abundances revealed that venom is dominated by three-finger toxins (77.5%; including 24.3% cytotoxins and 53.2% neurotoxins) and phospholipases A2 (13.5%). It also contains lower proportions of components belonging to nerve growth factor, ohanin/vespryn, cysteine-rich secretory protein, C-type lectin/lectin-like, nucleotidase, phosphodiesterase, metalloproteinase, l-amino acid oxidase, cobra venom factor, and cytidyltransferase protein families. Small amounts of three nucleosides were also evidenced: adenosine, guanosine, and inosine. The most relevant lethal components, categorized by means of a 'toxicity score', were α-neurotoxins, followed by cytotoxins/cardiotoxins. IgGs isolated from a person who had repeatedly self-immunized with a variety of snake venoms were immunoprofiled by ELISA against all venom fractions. Stronger responses against larger toxins, but lower against the most critical α-neurotoxins were obtained. As expected, no neutralization potential against N. kaouthia venom was therefore detected. Combined, our results display a high level of venom complexity, unveil the most relevant toxins to be neutralized, and provide prospects of discovering human IgGs with toxin neutralizing abilities through use of phage display screening.

  20. Effects of snake venom polypeptides on central nervous system.

    PubMed

    Osipov, Alexey; Utkin, Yuri

    2012-12-01

    The nervous system is a primary target for animal venoms as the impairment of its function results in the fast and efficient immobilization or death of a prey. There are numerous evidences about effects of crude snake venoms or isolated toxins on peripheral nervous system. However, the data on their interactions with the central nervous system (CNS) are not abundant, as the blood-brain barrier (BBB) impedes penetration of these compounds into brain. This updated review presents the data about interaction of snake venom polypeptides with CNS. Such data will be described according to three main modes of interactions: - Direct in vivo interaction of CNS with venom polypeptides either capable to penetrate BBB or injected into the brain. - In vitro interactions of cell or sub-cellular fractions of CNS with crude venoms or purified toxins. - Indirect effects of snake venoms or their components on functioning of CNS under different conditions. Although the venom components penetrating BBB are not numerous, they seem to be the most suitable candidates for the leads in drug design. The compounds with other modes of action are more abundant and better studied, but the lack of the data about their ability to penetrate BBB may substantially aggravate the potentials for their medical perspectives. Nevertheless, many such compounds are used for research of CNS in vitro. These investigations may give invaluable information for understanding the molecular basis of CNS diseases and thus lay the basis for targeted drug design. This aspect also will be outlined in the review.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  2. SNAKE VENOM POISONING IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

    PubMed Central

    Russell, Findlay E.

    1960-01-01

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

  3. Venomous snake bites, scorpions, and spiders.

    PubMed

    Kularatne, S A M; Senanayake, Nimal

    2014-01-01

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

  4. An in-depth snake venom proteopeptidome characterization: Benchmarking Bothrops jararaca.

    PubMed

    Nicolau, Carolina A; Carvalho, Paulo C; Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio L M; Teixeira-Ferreira, André; Junqueira, Magno; Perales, Jonas; Neves-Ferreira, Ana Gisele C; Valente, Richard H

    2017-01-16

    A large-scale proteomic approach was devised to advance the understanding of venom composition. Bothrops jararaca venom was fractionated by OFFGEL followed by chromatography, generating peptidic and proteic fractions. The latter was submitted to trypsin digestion. Both fractions were separately analyzed by reversed-phase nanochromatography coupled to high resolution mass spectrometry. This strategy allowed deeper and joint characterizations of the peptidome and proteome (proteopeptidome) of this venom. Our results lead to the identification of 46 protein classes (with several uniquely assigned proteins per class) comprising eight high-abundance bona fide venom components, and 38 additional classes in smaller quantities. This last category included previously described B. jararaca venom proteins, common Elapidae venom constituents (cobra venom factor and three-finger toxin), and proteins typically encountered in lysosomes, cellular membranes and blood plasma. Furthermore, this report is the most complete snake venom peptidome described so far, both in number of peptides and in variety of unique proteins that could have originated them. It is hypothesized that such diversity could enclose cryptides, whose bioactivities would contribute to envenomation in yet undetermined ways. Finally, we propose that the broad range screening of B. jararaca peptidome will facilitate the discovery of bioactive molecules, eventually leading to valuable therapeutical agents.

  5. Inhibition of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, a novel facet in the pleiotropic activities of snake venom phospholipases A2.

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

  6. Dynamic evolution of venom proteins in squamate reptiles.

    PubMed

    Casewell, Nicholas R; Huttley, Gavin A; Wüster, Wolfgang

    2012-01-01

    Phylogenetic analyses of toxin gene families have revolutionised our understanding of the origin and evolution of reptile venoms, leading to the current hypothesis that venom evolved once in squamate reptiles. However, because of a lack of homologous squamate non-toxin sequences, these conclusions rely on the implicit assumption that recruitments of protein families into venom are both rare and irreversible. Here we use sequences of homologous non-toxin proteins from two snake species to test these assumptions. Phylogenetic and ancestral-state analyses revealed frequent nesting of 'physiological' proteins within venom toxin clades, suggesting early ancestral recruitment into venom followed by reverse recruitment of toxins back to physiological roles. These results provide evidence that protein recruitment into venoms from physiological functions is not a one-way process, but dynamic, with reversal of function and/or co-expression of toxins in different tissues. This requires a major reassessment of our previous understanding of how animal venoms evolve.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-05-20

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

  8. Snake venomics across genus Lachesis. Ontogenetic changes in the venom composition of Lachesis stenophrys and comparative proteomics of the venoms of adult Lachesis melanocephala and Lachesis acrochorda.

    PubMed

    Madrigal, Marvin; Sanz, Libia; Flores-Díaz, Marietta; Sasa, Mahmood; Núñez, Vitelbina; Alape-Girón, Alberto; Calvete, Juan J

    2012-12-21

    We report the proteomic analysis of ontogenetic changes in venom composition of the Central American bushmaster, Lachesis stenophrys, and the characterization of the venom proteomes of two congeneric pitvipers, Lachesis melanocephala (black-headed bushmaster) and Lachesis acrochorda (Chochoan bushmaster). Along with the previous characterization of the venom proteome of Lachesis muta muta (from Bolivia), our present outcome enables a comparative overview of the composition and distribution of the toxic proteins across genus Lachesis. Comparative venomics revealed the close kinship of Central American L. stenophrys and L. melanocephala and support the elevation of L. acrochorda to species status. Major ontogenetic changes in the toxin composition of L. stenophrys venom involves quantitative changes in the concentration of vasoactive peptides and serine proteinases, which steadily decrease from birth to adulthood, and age-dependent de novo biosynthesis of Gal-lectin and snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs). The net result is a shift from a bradykinin-potentiating and C-type natriuretic peptide (BPP/C-NP)-rich and serine proteinase-rich venom in newborns and 2-years-old juveniles to a (PI>PIII) SVMP-rich venom in adults. Notwithstanding minor qualitative and quantitative differences, the venom arsenals of L. melanocephala and L. acrochorda are broadly similar between themselves and also closely mirror those of adult L. stenophrys and L. muta venoms. The high conservation of the overall composition of Central and South American bushmaster venoms provides the ground for rationalizing the "Lachesis syndrome", characterized by vagal syntomatology, sensorial disorders, hematologic, and cardiovascular manifestations, documented in envenomings by different species of this wide-ranging genus. This finding let us predict that monospecific Lachesic antivenoms may exhibit paraspecificity against all congeneric species.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-09-09

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

  11. THE PHOTODYNAMIC ACTION OF EOSIN AND ERYTHROSIN UPON SNAKE VENOM

    PubMed Central

    Noguchi, Hideyo

    1906-01-01

    Since the hæmolysins of the several venoms respond differently to photodynamic action, they may be regarded as possessing different chemical constitutions. As regards stability, cobra hæmolysin ranks first, daboia second, and Crotalus third. The toxicity of all the venoms is more or less diminished by eosin and erythrosin in sunlight. This reduction in toxicity depends upon chemical changes, of more or less profound nature, taking place in certain of the active principles of the venom. The more stabile the predominant active principles the less the reduction in toxicity, and vice versa. Venom-neurotoxins are highly resistant to photodynamic action, venom-hæmolysins are less resistant, while the hæmorrhagin and thrombokinase of Crotalus and daboia venoms exhibit weak powers of resistance to their action. Hence it follows that while cobra venom remained almost unaltered, rattlesnake and daboia venoms were greatly reduced in toxicity when mixed with the fluorescent dyes and exposed to sunlight. There is an interesting parallel between the action of eosin and erythrosin upon the different venoms and their reactions to other injurious agencies. For example, the hæmolysins of cobra and daboia venoms are more heat resistant than the hæmolysin of Crotalus venom, and the former are less injured by the dyes than the latter. The neurotoxin of the former venoms is also more heat stabile than that of the rattlesnake, and the same relative degree of resistance holds for this substance and the anilines. Just as the hæmorrhagin of rattlesnake venom and the thrombokinase of daboia venom are destroyed by a temperature of 75° C., so are they readily inactivated by the photo dynamic substances employed. The globulin-precipitating and blood corpuscle-protecting principle of cobra venom is relatively thermostabile and in contradistinction to the immunity-precipitins it is also unaffected by eosin and erythrosin. This study of the action of photodynamic substances upon snake

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-11-01

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

  14. A prothrombin activator from Bothrops erythromelas (jararaca-da-seca) snake venom: characterization and molecular cloning.

    PubMed

    Silva, Márcia B; Schattner, Mirta; Ramos, Celso R R; Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio L M; Guarnieri, Míriam C; Lazzari, María A; Sampaio, Claudio A M; Pozner, Roberto G; Ventura, Janaina S; Ho, Paulo L; Chudzinski-Tavassi, Ana M

    2003-01-01

    A novel prothrombin activator enzyme, which we have named 'berythractivase', was isolated from Bothrops erythromelas (jararaca-da-seca) snake venom. Berythractivase was purified by a single cation-exchange-chromatography step on a Resource S (Amersham Biosciences) column. The overall purification (31-fold) indicates that berythractivase comprises about 5% of the crude venom. It is a single-chain protein with a molecular mass of 78 kDa. SDS/PAGE of prothrombin after activation by berythractivase showed fragment patterns similar to those generated by group A prothrombin activators, which convert prothrombin into meizothrombin, independent of the prothrombinase complex. Chelating agents, such as EDTA and o -phenanthroline, rapidly inhibited the enzymic activity of berythractivase, like a typical metalloproteinase. Human fibrinogen A alpha-chain was slowly digested only after longer incubation with berythractivase, and no effect on the beta- or gamma-chains was observed. Berythractivase was also capable of triggering endothelial proinflammatory and procoagulant cell responses. von Willebrand factor was released, and the surface expression of both intracellular adhesion molecule-1 and E-selectin was up-regulated by berythractivase in cultured human umbilical-vein endothelial cells. The complete berythractivase cDNA was cloned from a B. erythromelas venom-gland cDNA library. The cDNA sequence possesses 2330 bp and encodes a preproprotein with significant sequence similarity to many other mature metalloproteinases reported from snake venoms. Berythractivase contains metalloproteinase, desintegrin-like and cysteine-rich domains. However, berythractivase did not elicit any haemorrhagic response. These results show that, although the primary structure of berythractivase is related to that of snake-venom haemorrhagic metalloproteinases and functionally similar to group A prothrombin activators, it is a prothrombin activator devoid of haemorrhagic activity. This is a feature

  15. Therapeutic application of natural inhibitors against snake venom phospholipase A2

    PubMed Central

    Perumal Samy, Ramar; Gopalakrishnakone, Ponnampalam; Chow, Vincent TK

    2012-01-01

    Natural inhibitors occupy an important place in the potential to neutralize the toxic effects caused by snake venom proteins and enzymes. It has been well recognized for several years that animal sera, some of the plant and marine extracts are the most potent in neutralizing snake venom phospholipase A2 (svPLA2). The implication of this review to update the latest research work which has been accomplished with svPLA2 inhibitors from various natural sources like animal, marine organisms presents a compilation of research in this field over the past decade and revisiting the previous research report including those found in plants. In addition to that the bioactive compounds/inhibitor molecules from diverse sources like aristolochic alkaloid, flavonoids and neoflavonoids from plants, hydrocarbones ­2, 4 dimethyl hexane, 2 methylnonane, and 2, 6 dimethyl heptane obtained from traditional medicinal plants Tragia involucrata (Euphorbiaceae) member of natural products involved for the inhibitory potential of phospholipase A2 (PLA2) enzymes in vitro and also decrease both oedema induced by snake venom as well as human synovial fluid PLA2. Besides marine natural products that inhibit PLA2 are manoalide and its derivatives such as scalaradial and related compounds, pseudopterosins and vidalols, tetracylne from synthetic chemicals etc. There is an overview of the role of PLA2 in inflammation that provides a rationale for seeking inhibitors of PLA2 as anti-inflammatory agents. However, more studies should be considered to evaluate antivenom efficiency of sera and other agents against a variety of snake venoms found in various parts of the world. The implications of these new groups of svPLA2 toxin inhibitors in the context of our current understanding of snake biology as well as in the development of new novel antivenoms therapeutics agents in the efficient treatment of snake envenomations are discussed. PMID:22359435

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-12-15

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

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

    PubMed

    Weinstein, Scott A

    2015-09-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2012-04-01

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

  19. Snake Venom Metalloproteinases and Their Peptide Inhibitors from Myanmar Russell’s Viper Venom

    PubMed Central

    Yee, Khin Than; Pitts, Morgan; Tongyoo, Pumipat; Rojnuckarin, Ponlapat; Wilkinson, Mark C.

    2016-01-01

    Russell’s viper bites are potentially fatal from severe bleeding, renal failure and capillary leakage. Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) are attributed to these effects. In addition to specific antivenom therapy, endogenous inhibitors from snakes are of interest in studies of new treatment modalities for neutralization of the effect of toxins. Two major snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs): RVV-X and Daborhagin were purified from Myanmar Russell’s viper venom using a new purification strategy. Using the Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) approach to explore the Myanmar RV venom gland transcriptome, mRNAs of novel tripeptide SVMP inhibitors (SVMPIs) were discovered. Two novel endogenous tripeptides, pERW and pEKW were identified and isolated from the crude venom. Both purified SVMPs showed caseinolytic activity. Additionally, RVV-X displayed specific proteolytic activity towards gelatin and Daborhagin showed potent fibrinogenolytic activity. These activities were inhibited by metal chelators. Notably, the synthetic peptide inhibitors, pERW and pEKW, completely inhibit the gelatinolytic and fibrinogenolytic activities of respective SVMPs at 5 mM concentration. These complete inhibitory effects suggest that these tripeptides deserve further study for development of a therapeutic candidate for Russell’s viper envenomation. PMID:28042812

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

    PubMed

    Chippaux, J P

    2007-02-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1995-12-31

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

  2. Isolation and partial purification of anticoagulant fractions from the venom of the Iranian snake Echis carinatus.

    PubMed

    Babaie, Mahdi; Zolfagharian, Hossein; Salmanizadeh, Hossein; Mirakabadi, Abbas Zare; Alizadeh, Hafezeh

    2013-01-01

    Many snake venoms comprise different factors, which can either promote or inhibit the blood coagulation pathway. Coagulation disorders and hemorrhage belong to the most prominent features of bites of the many vipers. A number of these factors interact with components of the human blood coagulation. This study is focused on the effect of Echis carinatus snake venom on blood coagulation pathway. Anticoagulant factors were purified from the Iranian Echis carinatus venom by two steps: gel filtration (Sephadex G-75) and ion-exchange (DEAE-Sephadex) chromatography, in order to study the anticoagulant effect of crude venom and their fractions. The prothrombin time was estimated on human plasma for each fraction. Our results showed that protrombin time value was increase from 13.4 s to 170 s for F2C and to 280 s for F2D. Our study showed that these fractions of the venom delay the prothrombine time and thus can be considered as anticoagulant factors. They were shown to exhibit proteolytic activity. The molecular weights of these anticoagulants (F2C, F2D) were estimated by SDS/PAGE electrophoresis. F2C comprises two protein bands with molecular weights of 50 and 79 kDa and F2D a single band with a molecular weight of 42 kDa.

  3. An efficient analytical platform for on-line microfluidic profiling of neuroactive snake venoms towards nicotinic receptor affinity.

    PubMed

    Heus, Ferry; Vonk, Freek; Otvos, Reka A; Bruyneel, Ben; Smit, August B; Lingeman, Henk; Richardson, Michael; Niessen, Wilfried M A; Kool, Jeroen

    2013-01-01

    Venomous snakes have evolved their efficient venomous arsenals mainly to immobilize prey. The highly variable toxic peptides in these venoms target a myriad of neurotoxic and haemotoxic receptors and enzymes and comprise highly interesting candidates for drug discovery. Discovery of bioactive compounds from snake venoms, however, is a challenge to achieve. We have developed and applied a methodology to rapidly assess bioactives in a snake venom proteome. Our microfluidic platform opens up efficient and rapid profiling of venomous anti-cholinergic receptor compounds. The key advantages of our methodology are: (i) nano amounts of venom needed; and (ii) a direct correlation of selected bioaffinities with accurate mass. To achieve this, we have for the first time successfully constructed a functional post nano-LC split to MS and bioaffinity profiling. In our method, comprehensive venom profiles with accurate masses and corresponding bioaffinities are obtained in one analytical run and will subsequently allow immediate purification of bioactive peptides with LC-MS, guided by accurate masses of the bioactives only. We profiled several neurotoxic Elapidae snake venoms using our methodology in combination with the acetylcholine binding protein (AChBP) as biological target protein. The latter is a homologue of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), a drug target in neurodegenerative diseases and cognitive decline such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's, and in pain related diseases. Our methodology was evaluated and validated with high-affinity α-bungarotoxin and haemotoxic/proteolytic Vipera ammodytes venom spiked with α-bungarotoxin. Thereafter, the methodology was applied to profile the venom proteomes of Dendroaspis jamesoni kaimosae, Naja annulifera and Naja nivea. Gathering comprehensive profiling data took less than 2 h per snake venom measured. The data yielded 20 AChBP ligands of which the corresponding accurate masses were used to retrieve information from

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  5. Snake venom L-amino acid oxidases: trends in pharmacology and biochemistry.

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

  7. Novel apigenin based small molecule that targets snake venom metalloproteases.

    PubMed

    Srinivasa, Venkatachalaiah; Sundaram, Mahalingam S; Anusha, Sebastian; Hemshekhar, Mahadevappa; Chandra Nayaka, Siddaiah; Kemparaju, Kempaiah; Basappa; Girish, Kesturu S; Rangappa, Kanchugarakoppal S

    2014-01-01

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

  8. The Snake with the Scorpion's Sting: Novel Three-Finger Toxin Sodium Channel Activators from the Venom of the Long-Glanded Blue Coral Snake (Calliophis bivirgatus).

    PubMed

    Yang, Daryl C; Deuis, Jennifer R; Dashevsky, Daniel; Dobson, James; Jackson, Timothy N W; Brust, Andreas; Xie, Bing; Koludarov, Ivan; Debono, Jordan; Hendrikx, Iwan; Hodgson, Wayne C; Josh, Peter; Nouwens, Amanda; Baillie, Gregory J; Bruxner, Timothy J C; Alewood, Paul F; Lim, Kelvin Kok Peng; Frank, Nathaniel; Vetter, Irina; Fry, Bryan G

    2016-10-18

    Millions of years of evolution have fine-tuned the ability of venom peptides to rapidly incapacitate both prey and potential predators. Toxicofera reptiles are characterized by serous-secreting mandibular or maxillary glands with heightened levels of protein expression. These glands are the core anatomical components of the toxicoferan venom system, which exists in myriad points along an evolutionary continuum. Neofunctionalisation of toxins is facilitated by positive selection at functional hotspots on the ancestral protein and venom proteins have undergone dynamic diversification in helodermatid and varanid lizards as well as advanced snakes. A spectacular point on the venom system continuum is the long-glanded blue coral snake (Calliophis bivirgatus), a specialist feeder that preys on fast moving, venomous snakes which have both a high likelihood of prey escape but also represent significant danger to the predator itself. The maxillary venom glands of C. bivirgatus extend one quarter of the snake's body length and nestle within the rib cavity. Despite the snake's notoriety its venom has remained largely unstudied. Here we show that the venom uniquely produces spastic paralysis, in contrast to the flaccid paralysis typically produced by neurotoxic snake venoms. The toxin responsible, which we have called calliotoxin (δ-elapitoxin-Cb1a), is a three-finger toxin (3FTx). Calliotoxin shifts the voltage-dependence of NaV1.4 activation to more hyperpolarised potentials, inhibits inactivation, and produces large ramp currents, consistent with its profound effects on contractile force in an isolated skeletal muscle preparation. Voltage-gated sodium channels (NaV) are a particularly attractive pharmacological target as they are involved in almost all physiological processes including action potential generation and conduction. Accordingly, venom peptides that interfere with NaV function provide a key defensive and predatory advantage to a range of invertebrate venomous

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-08-05

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  11. Venom-related transcripts from Bothrops jararaca tissues provide novel molecular insights into the production and evolution of snake venom.

    PubMed

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

    2015-03-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  13. Danger in the reef: Proteome, toxicity, and neutralization of the venom of the olive sea snake, Aipysurus laevis.

    PubMed

    Laustsen, Andreas H; Gutiérrez, José María; Rasmussen, Arne R; Engmark, Mikael; Gravlund, Peter; Sanders, Kate L; Lohse, Brian; Lomonte, Bruno

    2015-12-01

    Four specimens of the olive sea snake, Aipysurus laevis, were collected off the coast of Western Australia, and the venom proteome was characterized and quantitatively estimated by RP-HPLC, SDS-PAGE, and MALDI-TOF-TOF analyses. A. laevis venom is remarkably simple and consists of phospholipases A2 (71.2%), three-finger toxins (3FTx; 25.3%), cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRISP; 2.5%), and traces of a complement control module protein (CCM; 0.2%). Using a Toxicity Score, the most lethal components were determined to be short neurotoxins. Whole venom had an intravenous LD50 of 0.07 mg/kg in mice and showed a high phospholipase A2 activity, but no proteinase activity in vitro. Preclinical assessment of neutralization and ELISA immunoprofiling showed that BioCSL Sea Snake Antivenom was effective in cross-neutralizing A. laevis venom with an ED50 of 821 μg venom per mL antivenom, with a binding preference towards short neurotoxins, due to the high degree of conservation between short neurotoxins from A. laevis and Enhydrina schistosa venom. Our results point towards the possibility of developing recombinant antibodies or synthetic inhibitors against A. laevis venom due to its simplicity.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  16. SNAKE VENOMICS OF Crotalus tigris: THE MINIMALIST TOXIN ARSENAL OF THE DEADLIEST NEARTIC RATTLESNAKE VENOM

    PubMed Central

    CALVETE, Juan J.; PÉREZ, Alicia; LOMONTE, Bruno; SÁNCHEZ, Elda E.; SANZ, Libia

    2012-01-01

    We report the proteomic and antivenomic characterization of Crotalus tigris venom. This venom exhibits the highest lethality for mice among rattlesnakes and the simplest toxin proteome reported to date. The venom proteome of C. tigris comprises 7–8 gene products from 6 toxin families: the presynaptic β-neurotoxic heterodimeric PLA2, Mojave toxin, and two serine proteinases comprise, respectively, 66% and 27% of the C. tigris toxin arsenal, whereas a VEGF-like protein, a CRISP molecule, a medium-sized disintegrin, and 1–2 PIII-SVMPs, each represents 0.1–5% of the total venom proteome. This toxin profile really explains the systemic neuro- and myotoxic effects observed in envenomated animals. In addition, we found that venom lethality of C. tigris and other North American rattlesnake type II venoms correlates with the concentration of Mojave toxin A-subunit, supporting the view that the neurotoxic venom phenotype of crotalid type II venoms may be described as a single-allele adaptation. Our data suggest that the evolutionary trend towards neurotoxicity, which has been also reported for the South American rattlesnakes, may have resulted by paedomorphism. The ability of an experimental antivenom to effectively immunodeplete proteins from the type II venoms of C. tigris, C. horridus, C. oreganus helleri, C. scutulatus scutulatus, and S. catenatus catenatus, indicated the feasibility of generating a pan-American anti-Crotalus type II antivenom, suggested by the identification of shared evolutionary trends among South American and North American Crotalus. PMID:22181673

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

    PubMed

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

    2006-12-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-06-01

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

  19. Cross neutralization of common Southeast Asian viperid venoms by a Thai polyvalent snake antivenom (Hemato Polyvalent Snake Antivenom).

    PubMed

    Leong, Poh Kuan; Tan, Choo Hock; Sim, Si Mui; Fung, Shin Yee; Sumana, Khomvilai; Sitprija, Visith; Tan, Nget Hong

    2014-04-01

    Snake envenomation is a serious public health threat in many rural areas of Asia and Africa. Antivenom has hitherto been the definite treatment for snake envenomation. Owing to a lack of local production of specific antivenom, most countries in these regions fully depend on foreign supplies of antivenoms. Often, the effectiveness of the imported antivenoms against local medically important species has not been validated. This study aimed to assess cross-neutralizing capacity of a recently developed polyvalent antivenom, Hemato Polyvalent Snake Antivenom (HPAV), against venoms of a common viper and some pit vipers from Southeast Asia. Neutralisation assays showed that HPAV was able to effectively neutralize lethality of the common Southeast Asian viperid venoms examined (Calloselasma, Crytelytrops, Popeia, and Daboia sp.) except for Tropidolaemus wagleri venom. HPAV also effectively neutralized the procoagulant and hemorrhagic activities of all the venoms examined, corroboratively supporting the capability of HPAV in neutralizing viperid venoms which are principally hematoxic. The study also indicated that HPAV fully prevented the occurrence of hematuria and proteinuria in mice envenomed with Thai Daboia siamensis venom but was only partially effective against venoms of Myanmar D. siamensis. Thus, HPAV appears to be useful against its homologous venoms and venoms from Southeast Asian viperids including several medically important pit vipers belonging to the Trimeresurus complex. Nevertheless, the effectiveness of HPAV as a paraspecific antivenom for treatment of viperid envenomation in Southeast Asian region requires further assessment from future clinical trials.

  20. Crystal structure of a snake venom cardiotoxin

    SciTech Connect

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

    1987-05-01

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

  1. Cobra venom contains a pool of cysteine-rich secretory proteins.

    PubMed

    Osipov, Alexey V; Levashov, Mikhail Yu; Tsetlin, Victor I; Utkin, Yuri N

    2005-03-04

    A large family of cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRISPs) includes proteins of different origin, the function of the majority of CRISPs being unknown. For CRISPs isolated from snake venom, two types of activities were found: two proteins blocked cyclic nucleotide-gated ion channels, several others blocked potassium-stimulated smooth muscle contraction. Thus, snake CRISPs represent potentially valuable tools for studies of ion channels, which makes promising a search for new CRISPs. Here we report on the isolation of several novel CRISPs from the venoms of Asian cobra Naja kaouthia and African cobra Naja haje using a combination of different types of liquid chromatography. Four CRISP variants were identified in N. kaouthia venom and three proteins, one of them acidic, were found in N. haje venom. Acidic CRISP was found in a reptilian venom for the first time. Our data suggest that each cobra venom contains a pool of different CRISPs.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-12-15

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

  3. An examination of cardiovascular collapse induced by eastern brown snake (Pseudonaja textilis) venom.

    PubMed

    Chaisakul, Janeyuth; Isbister, Geoffrey K; Kuruppu, Sanjaya; Konstantakopoulos, Nicki; Hodgson, Wayne C

    2013-08-29

    The Pseudonaja genus (Brown snakes) is widely distributed across Australia and bites account for significant mortality. Venom-induced consumption coagulopathy (VICC) and, less often, early cardiovascular collapse occur following envenoming by these snakes. We have previously examined possible mechanism(s) behind the early cardiovascular collapse following Papuan taipan (Oxyuranus scutellatus) envenoming. In the present study, we investigate early cardiovascular collapse in anaesthetized rats following administration of eastern brown snake (Pseudonaja textilis) venom, and prevention of this effect with prior administration of 'priming' doses (i.e. doses of venom which caused a transient hypotensive response) of venom. P. textilis venom (5-10 μg/kg, i.v.) induced cardiovascular collapse in anaesthetized rats, characterized by a rapid decrease in systolic blood pressure until non recordable. Prior administration of 'priming' doses of P. textilis venom (2 and 3 μg/kg) or, at least, 4-5 doses of O. scutellatus (2 μg/kg, i.v.) or Daboia russelii limitis (20 μg/kg, i.v.) venoms prevented cardiovascular collapse induced by P. textilis venom. Moreover, early collapse was also inhibited by prior administration of 2 discrete doses of Acanthophis rugosus venom. Prior administration of commercial polyvalent snake antivenom (500-3000 units/kg, i.v.) or heparin (300 units/kg, i.v.) also inhibited P. textilis venom-induced cardiovascular collapse. Our results indicate that P. textilis venom-induced cardiovascular collapse can be prevented by prior administration of sub-lethal doses of venom from P. textilis, O. scutellatus, A. rugosus and D. russelii limitis. This suggests that sudden cardiovascular collapse following envenoming is likely to involve a common mechanism/pathway activated by different snake venoms.

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

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background A long term research goal of venomics, of applied importance for improving current antivenom therapy, but also for drug discovery, is to understand the pharmacological potential of venoms. Individually or combined, proteomic and transcriptomic studies have demonstrated their feasibility to explore in depth the molecular diversity of venoms. In the absence of genome sequence, transcriptomes represent also valuable searchable databases for proteomic projects. Results The venom gland transcriptomes of 8 Costa Rican taxa from 5 genera (Crotalus, Bothrops, Atropoides, Cerrophidion, and Bothriechis) of pitvipers were investigated using high-throughput 454 pyrosequencing. 100,394 out of 330,010 masked reads produced significant hits in the available databases. 5.165,220 nucleotides (8.27%) were masked by RepeatMasker, the vast majority of which corresponding to class I (retroelements) and class II (DNA transposons) mobile elements. BLAST hits included 79,991 matches to entries of the taxonomic suborder Serpentes, of which 62,433 displayed similarity to documented venom proteins. Strong discrepancies between the transcriptome-computed and the proteome-gathered toxin compositions were obvious at first sight. Although the reasons underlaying this discrepancy are elusive, since no clear trend within or between species is apparent, the data indicate that individual mRNA species may be translationally controlled in a species-dependent manner. The minimum number of genes from each toxin family transcribed into the venom gland transcriptome of each species was calculated from multiple alignments of reads matched to a full-length reference sequence of each toxin family. Reads encoding ORF regions of Kazal-type inhibitor-like proteins were uniquely found in Bothriechis schlegelii and B. lateralis transcriptomes, suggesting a genus-specific recruitment event during the early-Middle Miocene. A transcriptome-based cladogram supports the large divergence between A. mexicanus

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

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

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

  6. Snake venom toxins. The amino-acid sequence of a short-neurotoxin homologue from Dendroaspis polylepis polylepis (black mamba) venom.

    PubMed

    Strydom, D J

    1977-06-01

    The third most abundant component of black mamba venom, named FS2, was sequenced with the aid of sequenator studies and peptides derived by tryptic and chymotryptic digestion. Cyanogen bromide digests provided extra information to support the proposed structure. This protein is a homologue of the short neurotoxins of snake venom, but is much less toxic. Its structure is quite different from both neurotoxins and the other mamba proteins, called angusticeps types (neurotoxin homologues). Comparison of the known angusticeps-type toxins from mamba venom with mamba neurotoxins and each other leads to proposals that these proteins of low toxicity are inventions of the group of mambas and that three different, as yet unknown, functions will be associated with the three subgroups that are discernable.

  7. Adaptive evolution of the venom-targeted vWF protein in opossums that eat pitvipers.

    PubMed

    Jansa, Sharon A; Voss, Robert S

    2011-01-01

    The rapid evolution of venom toxin genes is often explained as the result of a biochemical arms race between venomous animals and their prey. However, it is not clear that an arms race analogy is appropriate in this context because there is no published evidence for rapid evolution in genes that might confer toxin resistance among routinely envenomed species. Here we report such evidence from an unusual predator-prey relationship between opossums (Marsupialia: Didelphidae) and pitvipers (Serpentes: Crotalinae). In particular, we found high ratios of replacement to silent substitutions in the gene encoding von Willebrand Factor (vWF), a venom-targeted hemostatic blood protein, in a clade of opossums known to eat pitvipers and to be resistant to their hemorrhagic venom. Observed amino-acid substitutions in venom-resistant opossums include changes in net charge and hydrophobicity that are hypothesized to weaken the bond between vWF and one of its toxic snake-venom ligands, the C-type lectin-like protein botrocetin. Our results provide the first example of rapid adaptive evolution in any venom-targeted molecule, and they support the notion that an evolutionary arms race might be driving the rapid evolution of snake venoms. However, in the arms race implied by our results, venomous snakes are prey, and their venom has a correspondingly defensive function in addition to its usual trophic role.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  9. At-line nanofractionation with parallel mass spectrometry and bioactivity assessment for the rapid screening of thrombin and factor Xa inhibitors in snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Mladic, Marija; Zietek, Barbara M; Iyer, Janaki Krishnamoorthy; Hermarij, Philip; Niessen, Wilfried M A; Somsen, Govert W; Kini, R Manjunatha; Kool, Jeroen

    2016-02-01

    Snake venoms comprise complex mixtures of peptides and proteins causing modulation of diverse physiological functions upon envenomation of the prey organism. The components of snake venoms are studied as research tools and as potential drug candidates. However, the bioactivity determination with subsequent identification and purification of the bioactive compounds is a demanding and often laborious effort involving different analytical and pharmacological techniques. This study describes the development and optimization of an integrated analytical approach for activity profiling and identification of venom constituents targeting the cardiovascular system, thrombin and factor Xa enzymes in particular. The approach developed encompasses reversed-phase liquid chromatography (RPLC) analysis of a crude snake venom with parallel mass spectrometry (MS) and bioactivity analysis. The analytical and pharmacological part in this approach are linked using at-line nanofractionation. This implies that the bioactivity is assessed after high-resolution nanofractionation (6 s/well) onto high-density 384-well microtiter plates and subsequent freeze drying of the plates. The nanofractionation and bioassay conditions were optimized for maintaining LC resolution and achieving good bioassay sensitivity. The developed integrated analytical approach was successfully applied for the fast screening of snake venoms for compounds affecting thrombin and factor Xa activity. Parallel accurate MS measurements provided correlation of observed bioactivity to peptide/protein masses. This resulted in identification of a few interesting peptides with activity towards the drug target factor Xa from a screening campaign involving venoms of 39 snake species. Besides this, many positive protease activity peaks were observed in most venoms analysed. These protease fingerprint chromatograms were found to be similar for evolutionary closely related species and as such might serve as generic snake protease

  10. Detection of venom by enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) in patients bitten by snakes in Thailand.

    PubMed Central

    Silamut, K; Ho, M; Looareesuwan, S; Viravan, C; Wuthiekanun, V; Warrell, D A

    1987-01-01

    The ability of an enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) to detect venom was evaluated in 251 patients bitten by four of the commonest poisonous snakes in Thailand. Serum was tested only from patients who brought the snakes that had bitten them. About one third of all bitten patients had detectable venom antigenaemia, though a smaller proportion were symptomatic. Serum venom concentrations on admission correlated with the severity of clinical manifestations. The test was sensitive and specific even for specimens that had been collected and stored under suboptimal conditions. The technique is suitable for forensic use in cases of suspected snakebite. The combination of snake identification and venom antigen detection should be a more reliable means of studying the epidemiology of snakebite than the measurement of venom antibodies in a population. PMID:3101897

  11. Comparison of total protein and phospholipase A(2) levels in individual coralsnake venoms.

    PubMed

    Kopper, Randall A; Harper, George R; Zimmerman, Sloane; Hook, Jessica

    2013-12-15

    Studies of differences or changes in venom protein levels or enzymatic activities have significance only if contrasted to the normal variations between individual snakes. This study involves the analysis and comparison of venom from 13 individual Texas coralsnakes (Micrurus tener tener) in order to detect differences in the volume, total protein concentration, electrophoretic profile, and PLA2 enzyme activity. A significant inverse correlation between venom volume and total protein concentration was found. Although the 13 venoms were indistinguishable from their electrophoretic protein profiles, phospholipase A2 enzymatic activities varied considerably.

  12. Presynaptic Proteins as Markers of the Neurotoxic Activity of BmjeTX-I and BmjeTX-II Toxins from Bothrops marajoensis (Marajó Lancehead) Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Lisboa, Antonio; Melaré, Rodolfo; Franco, Junia R. B.; Bis, Carolina V.; Gracia, Marta; Ponce-Soto, Luis A.; Marangoni, Sérgio; Rodrigues-Simioni, Léa; da Cruz-Höfling, Maria Alice

    2016-01-01

    Neuromuscular preparations exposed to B. marajoensis venom show increases in the frequency of miniature end-plate potentials and twitch tension facilitation followed by presynaptic neuromuscular paralysis, without evidences of muscle damage. Considering that presynaptic toxins interfere into the machinery involved in neurotransmitter release (synaptophysin, synaptobrevin, and SNAP25 proteins), the main objective of this communication is to analyze, by immunofluorescence and western blotting, the expression of the synaptic proteins, synaptophysin, synaptobrevin, and SNAP25 and by myography, light, and transmission electron microscopy the pathology of motor nerve terminals and skeletal muscle fibres of chick biventer cervicis preparations (CBC) exposed in vitro to BmjeTX-I and BmjeTX-II toxins from B. marajoensis venom. CBC incubated with toxins showed irreversible twitch tension blockade and unaffected KCl- and ACh-evoked contractures, and the positive colabelling of acetylcholine receptors confirmed that their action was primarily at the motor nerve terminal. Hypercontraction and loose myofilaments and synaptic vesicle depletion and motor nerve damage indicated that the toxins displayed both myotoxic and neurotoxic effect. The blockade resulted from interference on synaptophysin, synaptobrevin, and SNAP25 proteins leading to the conclusion that BmjeTX-I and BmjeTX-II affected neurotransmitter release machinery by preventing the docking of synaptic vesicles to the axolemma of the nerve terminal. PMID:27635261

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-05-23

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

  14. [Pharmacologic and enzymatic effects of snake venoms from Antioquia and Choco (Colombia)].

    PubMed

    Otero, R; Guillermo Osorio, R; Valderrama, R; Augusto Giraldo, C

    1992-01-01

    We compared several pharmacological and enzymatic effects induced by 11 snake venoms from seven species, six of them from different geographic areas of Antioquia and Choco, north-west of Colombia, South America (Bothrops atrox, B. nasutus, B. schlegelii, B. punctatus, Lachesis muta, Micrurus mipartitus), and Crotalus durissus terrificus venom, from specimens captured in other provinces of the country (Tolima, Huila, Meta and Atlantico). Differences were observed in edema-forming, hemorrhage, defibrination, indirect hemolysis, myonecrosis, proteolysis and lethal activity between venoms from different genera or species, as well as according to the geographic area of origin in B. atrox and B. nasutus snake venoms. Bothrops venoms, in particular B. atrox and L. muta, produced major local effects. All of the venoms, including M. mipartitus, had myotoxic effects. The most defibrinating venoms were B. atrox, L. muta, B. punctatus and C. d. terrificus. All of the venoms had indirect hemolytic activity; the venom of M. mipartitus being greatest. The most lethal venoms were those of C. d. terrificus and M. mipartitus. Within Bothrops species, the venom of B. schlegelii was the least active in terms of local and systemic pathologic effects.

  15. Neutralization of pharmacological and toxic activities of bothrops snake venoms by Schizolobium parahyba (Fabaceae) aqueous extract and its fractions.

    PubMed

    Vale, Luis Henrique F; Mendes, Mirian M; Hamaguchi, Amélia; Soares, Andreimar M; Rodrigues, Veridiana M; Homsi-Brandeburgo, Maria Inês

    2008-07-01

    The aqueous extract prepared from Schizolobium parahyba (Sp) leaves, a native plant from Atlantic Forest (Brazil), was tested to analyse its ability to inhibit some biological and enzymatic activities induced by Bothrops alternatus (BaltCV) and Bothrops moojeni (BmooCV) snake venoms. Sp inhibited 100% of lethality, blood incoagulability, haemorrhagic and indirect haemolytic activities at a 1:10 ratio (venom/extract, w/w), as well as coagulant activity at a 1:5 ratio (venom/extract, w/w) induced by both venoms. BaltCV fibrinogenolytic activity was also neutralized by Sp at a 1:10 ratio, resulting in total protection of fibrinogen Bbeta chain and partial protection of Aalpha chain. Interaction tests have demonstrated that, at certain extract/proteins ratios, Sp precipitates proteins non-specifically suggesting the presence of tannins, which are very likely responsible for the excellent inhibiting effects of the analysed ophidian activities. Sp aqueous extract chromatography on Sephadex LH-20 was carried out aiming at the separation of these compounds that mask the obtained results. Thus, the fractionation of Sp resulted in three fractions: F1 (methanolic fraction); F2 (methanol:water fraction, 1:1 v/v); and F3 (aqueous fraction). These fractions were analysed for their ability to inhibit the BaltCV fibrinogenolytic activity. F1 inhibited 100% the venom fibrinogenolytic activity without presenting protein precipitation effect; F2 showed only partial inhibition of this venom activity. Finally, F3 did not inhibit fibrinogen proteolysis, but presented strong protein precipitating action. We conclude that Sp aqueous extract, together with tannins, also contains other compounds that can display specific inhibitory activity against snake venom toxins.

  16. Protective Effect of the Plant Extracts of Erythroxylum sp. against Toxic Effects Induced by the Venom of Lachesis muta Snake.

    PubMed

    Coriolano de Oliveira, Eduardo; Alves Soares Cruz, Rodrigo; de Mello Amorim, Nayanna; Guerra Santos, Marcelo; Carlos Simas Pereira Junior, Luiz; Flores Sanchez, Eladio Oswaldo; Pinho Fernandes, Caio; Garrett, Rafael; Machado Rocha, Leandro; Lopes Fuly, André

    2016-10-11

    Snake venoms are composed of a complex mixture of active proteins that induce toxic effects, such as edema, hemorrhage, and death. Lachesis muta has the highest lethality indices in Brazil. In most cases, antivenom fails to neutralize local effects, leading to disabilities in victims. Thus, alternative treatments are under investigation, and plant extracts are promising candidates. The objective of this work was to investigate the ability of crude extracts, fractions, or isolated products of Erythroxylum ovalifolium and Erythroxylum subsessile to neutralize some toxic effects of L. muta venom. All samples were mixed with L. muta venom, then in vivo (hemorrhage and edema) and in vitro (proteolysis, coagulation, and hemolysis) assays were performed. Overall, crude extracts or fractions of Erythroxylum spp. inhibited (20%-100%) toxic effects of the venom, but products achieved an inhibition of 4%-30%. However, when venom was injected into mice before the plant extracts, hemorrhage and edema were not inhibited by the samples. On the other hand, an inhibition of 5%-40% was obtained when extracts or products were given before venom injection. These results indicate that the extracts or products of Erythroxylum spp. could be a promising source of molecules able to treat local toxic effects of envenomation by L. muta venom, aiding in the development of new strategies for antivenom treatment.

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-11-01

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

  18. A Transcriptomic View of the Proteome Variability of Newborn and Adult Bothrops jararaca Snake Venoms

    PubMed Central

    Zelanis, André; Andrade-Silva, Débora; Rocha, Marisa M.; Furtado, Maria F.; Serrano, Solange M. T.; Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio L. M.; Ho, Paulo Lee

    2012-01-01

    Background Snake bite is a neglected public health problem in communities in rural areas of several countries. Bothrops jararaca causes many snake bites in Brazil and previous studies have demonstrated that the pharmacological activities displayed by its venom undergo a significant ontogenetic shift. Similarly, the venom proteome of B. jararaca exhibits a considerable variation upon neonate to adult transition, which is associated with changes in diet from ectothermic prey in early life to endothermic prey in adulthood. Moreover, it has been shown that the Brazilian commercial antibothropic antivenom, which is produced by immunization with adult venom, is less effective in neutralizing newborn venom effects. On the other hand, venom gland transcripts of newborn snakes are poorly known since all transcriptomic studies have been carried out using mRNA from adult specimens. Methods/Principal Findings Here we analyzed venom gland cDNA libraries of newborn and adult B. jararaca in order to evaluate whether the variability demonstrated for its venom proteome and pharmacological activities was correlated with differences in the structure of toxin transcripts. The analysis revealed that the variability in B. jararaca venom gland transcriptomes is quantitative, as illustrated by the very high content of metalloproteinases in the newborn venom glands. Moreover, the variability is also characterized by the structural diversity of SVMP precursors found in newborn and adult transcriptomes. In the adult transcriptome, however, the content of metalloproteinase precursors considerably diminishes and the number of transcripts of serine proteinases, C-type lectins and bradykinin-potentiating peptides increase. Moreover, the comparison of the content of ESTs encoding toxins in adult male and female venom glands showed some gender-related differences. Conclusions/Significance We demonstrate a substantial shift in toxin transcripts upon snake development and a marked decrease in the

  19. Natural phospholipase A(2) myotoxin inhibitor proteins from snakes, mammals and plants.

    PubMed

    Lizano, Sergio; Domont, Gilberto; Perales, Jonas

    2003-12-15

    A renewed interest in the phenomenon of inter- and intra-species resistance towards the toxicity of snake venoms, coupled with the search for new strategies for treatment of snake envenomations, has prompted the discovery of proteins which neutralize the major toxic components of these venoms. Among these emerging groups of proteins are inhibitors of toxic phospholipases A2 (PLA2s), many of which exhibit a wide range of toxic effects including muscle-tissue damage, neurotoxicity, and inflammation. These proteins have been isolated from both venomous and non-venomous snakes, mammals, and most recently from medicinal plant extracts. The snake blood-derived inhibitors have been grouped into three major classes, alpha, beta, and gamma, based on common structural motifs found in other proteins with diverse physiological properties. In mammals, DM64, an anti-myotoxic protein isolated from opossum serum, belongs to the immunoglobulin super gene family and is homologous to human alpha1B-glycoprotein and DM43, a metalloproteinase inhibitor from the same organism. In plants, a short note is made of WSG, a newly described anti-toxic-PLA2 glycoprotein isolated from Withania somnifera (Ashwaganda), a medicinal plant whose aqueous extracts neutralize the PLA2 activity of the Naja naja venom. The implications of these new groups of PLA2 toxin inhibitors in the context of our current understanding of snake biology as well as in the development of novel therapeutic reagents in the treatment of snake envenomations worldwide are discussed.

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

    PubMed

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

    2007-06-01

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

  1. Snake venomics of the pit vipers Porthidium nasutum, Porthidium ophryomegas, and Cerrophidion godmani from Costa Rica: toxicological and taxonomical insights.

    PubMed

    Lomonte, Bruno; Rey-Suárez, Paola; Tsai, Wan-Chih; Angulo, Yamileth; Sasa, Mahmood; Gutiérrez, José María; Calvete, Juan J

    2012-02-16

    Within the Neotropical pit vipers, a lineage of primarily Middle American snake species referred to as the "Porthidium group" includes the genera Atropoides, Cerrophidion, and Porthidium. In this study, the venom proteomes of Porthidium nasutum, P. ophryomegas, and Cerrophidion godmani from Costa Rica were analyzed, and correlated to their toxic and enzymatic activities. Their HPLC profiles revealed a higher similarity between the two Porthidium species than between these and C. godmani. Proteins belonging to nine (P. nasutum), eight (P. ophryomegas), and nine (C. godmani) families were identified by mass spectrometry or N-terminal sequencing. Final cataloging of proteins and their relative abundances confirmed the close relationship between venoms of P. nasutum and P. ophryomegas, departing from that of C. godmani. Since the latter species had been taxonomically classified as Porthidium godmani previously, our venomic analyses agree with its current generic status. Venoms of P. nasutum and P. ophryomegas, despite containing abundant metalloproteinases and serine proteinases, lack procoagulant activity on human plasma, in contrast to venom of C. godmani. The latter induced strong myotoxicity in mice, which correlates with its high proportion of phospholipases A(2), whereas venoms from the two Porthidium species, containing lower amounts of these enzymes, induced only mild muscle damage.

  2. Bmoo FIBMP-I: A New Fibrinogenolytic Metalloproteinase from Bothrops moojeni Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Torres, F. S.; Rates, B.; Gomes, M. T. R.; Salas, C. E.; Pimenta, A. M. C.; Oliveira, F.; Santoro, M. M.; de Lima, M. E.

    2012-01-01

    A new fibrinogenolytic metalloproteinase (Bmoo FIBMP-I) was purified from Bothrops moojeni snake venom. This enzyme was isolated through a combination of three chromatographic steps (ion-exchange, molecular exclusion, and affinity chromatography). Analyses by reverse phase chromatography, followed by mass spectrometry, showed the presence of enzyme isoforms with average molecular mass of 22.8 kDa. The SDS-PAGE analyses showed a single chain of 27.6 kDa, in the presence and absence of reducing agent. The protein has a blocked N-terminal. One of the peptides obtained by enzymatic digestion of a reduced and S-alkylated isoform was completely sequenced by mass spectrometry (MS/MS). Bmoo FIBMP-I showed similarity with hemorrhagic factor and several metalloproteinases (MP). This enzyme degraded Aα-chain faster than the Bβ-chain and did not affect the γ-chain of bovine fibrinogen. The absence of proteolytic activity after treatment with EDTA, together with the observed molecular mass, led us to suggest that Bmoo FIBMP-I is a member of the P-I class of the snake venom MP family. Bmoo FIBMP-I showed pH-dependent proteolytic activity on azocasein, but was devoid of coagulant, defibrinating, or hemorrhagic activities. The kinetic parameters of proteolytic activity in azocasein were determined (Vmax = 0.4596 Uh−1nmol−1 ± 0.1031 and Km = 14.59 mg/mL ± 4.610). PMID:23762636

  3. Unveiling the complexities of Daboia russelii venom, a medically important snake of India, by tandem mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Maitreyee; Das, Diganta; Iyer, Janaki Krishnamoorthy; Kini, R Manjunatha; Doley, Robin

    2015-12-01

    Composition of Indian Russell's viper (Daboia russelii russelii) venom, a medically important snake and member of "Big Four" snakes of India was done by gel filtration chromatography followed by tandem mass spectrometry. The MS/MS analyses of tryptic digested gel filtration peaks divulged the presence of 63 different proteins belonging to 12 families. Phospholipase A2 (PLA2), serine proteases, metalloproteases, cysteine-rich secretory proteins, l-amino acid oxidase, C-type lectin-like proteins, kunitz-type serine protease inhibitor, disintegrin, nucleotidase, phosphodiesterase, vascular endothelial growth factor and vascular nerve growth factor families were identified. PLA2 enzymes with isoforms of N-, S- and H-type based on their first N-terminal amino acid residue were observed. The venom is also found to be rich in RVV-X, RVV-V and thrombin-like enzymes. Homologues of disintegrins with RGD and RTS motifs were also observed. The high percentage of PLA2 and proteases in the venom proteome could be responsible for the observed coagulopathy, haemorrhage and edema which can be correlated with the clinical manifestations of Russell's viper envenomation. This is the first proteomic analysis of Indian D. russelii venom which might assist in understanding the pathophysiological effects of viper envenomation. Such study will also be important for developing more effective antivenom for viper bite management.

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

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

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

  5. Venomics of the beaked sea snake, Hydrophis schistosus: A minimalist toxin arsenal and its cross-neutralization by heterologous antivenoms.

    PubMed

    Tan, Choo Hock; Tan, Kae Yi; Lim, Sin Ee; Tan, Nget Hong

    2015-08-03

    The venom proteome of Hydrophis schistosus (syn: Enhydrina schistosa) captured in Malaysian waters was investigated using reverse-phase HPLC, SDS-PAGE and high-resolution liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. The findings revealed a minimalist profile with only 18 venom proteins. These proteins belong to 5 toxin families: three-finger toxin (3FTx), phospholipase A2 (PLA2), cysteine-rich secretory protein (CRISP), snake venom metalloprotease (SVMP) and L-amino acid oxidase (LAAO). The 3FTxs (3 short neurotoxins and 4 long neurotoxins) constitute 70.5% of total venom protein, 55.8% being short neurotoxins and 14.7% long neurotoxins. The PLA2 family consists of four basic (21.4%) and three acidic (6.1%) isoforms. The minor proteins include one CRISP (1.3%), two SVMPs (0.5%) and one LAAO (0.2%). This is the first report of the presence of long neurotoxins, CRISP and LAAO in H. schistosus venom. The neurotoxins and the basic PLA2 are highly lethal in mice with an intravenous median lethal dose of <0.2 μg/g. Cross-neutralization by heterologous elapid antivenoms (Naja kaouthia monovalent antivenom and Neuro polyvalent antivenom) was moderate against the long neurotoxin and basic PLA2, but weak against the short neurotoxin, indicating that the latter is the limiting factor to be overcome for improving the antivenom cross-neutralization efficacy.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-02-28

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-01

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

  9. Global disulfide bond profiling for crude snake venom using dimethyl labeling coupled with mass spectrometry and RADAR algorithm.

    PubMed

    Huang, Sheng Yu; Chen, Sung Fang; Chen, Chun Hao; Huang, Hsuan Wei; Wu, Wen Guey; Sung, Wang Chou

    2014-09-02

    Snake venom consists of toxin proteins with multiple disulfide linkages to generate unique structures and biological functions. Determination of these cysteine connections usually requires the purification of each protein followed by structural analysis. In this study, dimethyl labeling coupled with LC-MS/MS and RADAR algorithm was developed to identify the disulfide bonds in crude snake venom. Without any protein separation, the disulfide linkages of several cytotoxins and PLA2 could be solved, including more than 20 disulfide bonds. The results show that this method is capable of analyzing protein mixture. In addition, the approach was also used to compare native cytotoxin 3 (CTX III) and its scrambled isomer, another category of protein mixture, for unknown disulfide bonds. Two disulfide-linked peptides were observed in the native CTX III, and 10 in its scrambled form, X-CTX III. This is the first study that reports a platform for the global cysteine connection analysis on a protein mixture. The proposed method is simple and automatic, offering an efficient tool for structural and functional studies of venom proteins.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

  12. The toxicogenomic multiverse: convergent recruitment of proteins into animal venoms.

    PubMed

    Fry, Bryan G; Roelants, Kim; Champagne, Donald E; Scheib, Holger; Tyndall, Joel D A; King, Glenn F; Nevalainen, Timo J; Norman, Janette A; Lewis, Richard J; Norton, Raymond S; Renjifo, Camila; de la Vega, Ricardo C Rodríguez

    2009-01-01

    Throughout evolution, numerous proteins have been convergently recruited into the venoms of various animals, including centipedes, cephalopods, cone snails, fish, insects (several independent venom systems), platypus, scorpions, shrews, spiders, toxicoferan reptiles (lizards and snakes), and sea anemones. The protein scaffolds utilized convergently have included AVIT/colipase/prokineticin, CAP, chitinase, cystatin, defensins, hyaluronidase, Kunitz, lectin, lipocalin, natriuretic peptide, peptidase S1, phospholipase A(2), sphingomyelinase D, and SPRY. Many of these same venom protein types have also been convergently recruited for use in the hematophagous gland secretions of invertebrates (e.g., fleas, leeches, kissing bugs, mosquitoes, and ticks) and vertebrates (e.g., vampire bats). Here, we discuss a number of overarching structural, functional, and evolutionary generalities of the protein families from which these toxins have been frequently recruited and propose a revised and expanded working definition for venom. Given the large number of striking similarities between the protein compositions of conventional venoms and hematophagous secretions, we argue that the latter should also fall under the same definition.

  13. Colubrid Venom Composition: An -Omics Perspective

    PubMed Central

    Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio L. M.; Campos, Pollyanna F.; Ching, Ana T. C.; Mackessy, Stephen P.

    2016-01-01

    Snake venoms have been subjected to increasingly sensitive analyses for well over 100 years, but most research has been restricted to front-fanged snakes, which actually represent a relatively small proportion of extant species of advanced snakes. Because rear-fanged snakes are a diverse and distinct radiation of the advanced snakes, understanding venom composition among “colubrids” is critical to understanding the evolution of venom among snakes. Here we review the state of knowledge concerning rear-fanged snake venom composition, emphasizing those toxins for which protein or transcript sequences are available. We have also added new transcriptome-based data on venoms of three species of rear-fanged snakes. Based on this compilation, it is apparent that several components, including cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRiSPs), C-type lectins (CTLs), CTLs-like proteins and snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs), are broadly distributed among “colubrid” venoms, while others, notably three-finger toxins (3FTxs), appear nearly restricted to the Colubridae (sensu stricto). Some putative new toxins, such as snake venom matrix metalloproteinases, are in fact present in several colubrid venoms, while others are only transcribed, at lower levels. This work provides insights into the evolution of these toxin classes, but because only a small number of species have been explored, generalizations are still rather limited. It is likely that new venom protein families await discovery, particularly among those species with highly specialized diets. PMID:27455326

  14. Colubrid Venom Composition: An -Omics Perspective.

    PubMed

    Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio L M; Campos, Pollyanna F; Ching, Ana T C; Mackessy, Stephen P

    2016-07-23

    Snake venoms have been subjected to increasingly sensitive analyses for well over 100 years, but most research has been restricted to front-fanged snakes, which actually represent a relatively small proportion of extant species of advanced snakes. Because rear-fanged snakes are a diverse and distinct radiation of the advanced snakes, understanding venom composition among "colubrids" is critical to understanding the evolution of venom among snakes. Here we review the state of knowledge concerning rear-fanged snake venom composition, emphasizing those toxins for which protein or transcript sequences are available. We have also added new transcriptome-based data on venoms of three species of rear-fanged snakes. Based on this compilation, it is apparent that several components, including cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRiSPs), C-type lectins (CTLs), CTLs-like proteins and snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs), are broadly distributed among "colubrid" venoms, while others, notably three-finger toxins (3FTxs), appear nearly restricted to the Colubridae (sensu stricto). Some putative new toxins, such as snake venom matrix metalloproteinases, are in fact present in several colubrid venoms, while others are only transcribed, at lower levels. This work provides insights into the evolution of these toxin classes, but because only a small number of species have been explored, generalizations are still rather limited. It is likely that new venom protein families await discovery, particularly among those species with highly specialized diets.

  15. Isolation and Biochemical Characterization of a New Thrombin-Like Serine Protease from Bothrops pirajai Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Zaqueo, Kayena D.; Kayano, Anderson M.; Simões-Silva, Rodrigo; Moreira-Dill, Leandro S.; Fernandes, Carla F. C.; Fuly, André L.; Maltarollo, Vinícius G.; Honório, Kathia M.; da Silva, Saulo L.; Acosta, Gerardo; Caballol, Maria Antonia O.; de Oliveira, Eliandre; Albericio, Fernando; Calderon, Leonardo A.; Soares, Andreimar M.; Stábeli, Rodrigo G.

    2014-01-01

    This paper presents a novel serine protease (SP) isolated from Bothrops pirajai, a venomous snake found solely in Brazil that belongs to the Viperidae family. The identified SP, named BpirSP-39, was isolated by three chromatographic steps (size exclusion, bioaffinity, and reverse phase chromatographies). The molecular mass of BpirSP-39 was estimated by SDS-PAGE and confirmed by mass spectrometry (39,408.32 Da). The protein was able to form fibrin networks, which was not observed in the presence of serine protease inhibitors, such as phenylmethylsulfonyl fluoride (PMSF). Furthermore, BpirSP-39 presented considerable thermal stability and was apparently able to activate factor XIII of the blood coagulation cascade, unlike most serine proteases. BpirSP-39 was capable of hydrolyzing different chromogenic substrates tested (S-2222, S-2302, and S-2238) while Cu2+ significantly diminished BspirSP-39 activity on the three tested substrates. The enzyme promoted platelet aggregation and also exhibited fibrinogenolytic, fibrinolytic, gelatinolytic, and amidolytic activities. The multiple alignment showed high sequence similarity to other thrombin-like enzymes from snake venoms. These results allow us to conclude that a new SP was isolated from Bothrops pirajai snake venom. PMID:24719874

  16. Isolation and biochemical characterization of a new thrombin-like serine protease from Bothrops pirajai snake venom.

    PubMed

    Zaqueo, Kayena D; Kayano, Anderson M; Simões-Silva, Rodrigo; Moreira-Dill, Leandro S; Fernandes, Carla F C; Fuly, André L; Maltarollo, Vinícius G; Honório, Kathia M; da Silva, Saulo L; Acosta, Gerardo; Caballol, Maria Antonia O; de Oliveira, Eliandre; Albericio, Fernando; Calderon, Leonardo A; Soares, Andreimar M; Stábeli, Rodrigo G

    2014-01-01

    This paper presents a novel serine protease (SP) isolated from Bothrops pirajai, a venomous snake found solely in Brazil that belongs to the Viperidae family. The identified SP, named BpirSP-39, was isolated by three chromatographic steps (size exclusion, bioaffinity, and reverse phase chromatographies). The molecular mass of BpirSP-39 was estimated by SDS-PAGE and confirmed by mass spectrometry (39,408.32 Da). The protein was able to form fibrin networks, which was not observed in the presence of serine protease inhibitors, such as phenylmethylsulfonyl fluoride (PMSF). Furthermore, BpirSP-39 presented considerable thermal stability and was apparently able to activate factor XIII of the blood coagulation cascade, unlike most serine proteases. BpirSP-39 was capable of hydrolyzing different chromogenic substrates tested (S-2222, S-2302, and S-2238) while Cu(2+) significantly diminished BspirSP-39 activity on the three tested substrates. The enzyme promoted platelet aggregation and also exhibited fibrinogenolytic, fibrinolytic, gelatinolytic, and amidolytic activities. The multiple alignment showed high sequence similarity to other thrombin-like enzymes from snake venoms. These results allow us to conclude that a new SP was isolated from Bothrops pirajai snake venom.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

  18. Cross-neutralisation of the neurotoxic effects of Egyptian cobra venom with commercial tiger snake antivenom.

    PubMed

    Kornhauser, Rachelle; Isbister, Geoffrey K; O'Leary, Margaret A; Mirtschin, Peter; Dunstan, Nathan; Hodgson, Wayne C

    2013-02-01

    Cross-neutralisation has been demonstrated for haemorrhagic venoms including Echis spp. and Cerastes spp. and for Australia elapid procoagulant toxins. A previous study showed that commercial tiger snake antivenom (TSAV) was able to neutralise the systemic effects of the Egyptian cobra, Naja haje, in vivo but it is unclear if this was true cross-neutralisation. The aim of the current study was to determine whether TSAV can neutralise the in vitro neurotoxic effects of N. haje venom. Both Notechis scutatus (10 μg/ml) and N. haje (10 μg/ml) venoms caused inhibition of indirect (supramaximal V, 0.1 Hz, 0.2 msec.) twitches of the chick biventer cervicis nerve-muscle preparation with t(90) values (i.e. the time to produce 90% inhibition of the original twitch height) of 26 ± 1 min. (n = 4) and 36 ± 4 min.; (n = 4). This effect at 10 μg/ml was significantly attenuated by the prior addition of TSAV (5 U/ml). A comparison of the reverse-phase HPLC profiles of both venoms showed some similarities with peak elution times, and SDS-PAGE analysis elucidated comparable bands across both venoms. Further analysis using Western immunoblotting indicated TSAV was able to detect N. haje venom, and enzyme immunoassay showed that in-house biotinylated polyclonal monovalent N. scutatus antibodies were able to detect N. haje venom. These findings demonstrate cross-neutralisation between different and geographically separated snakes supporting potential immunological similarities in snake toxin groups for a large range of snakes. This provides more evidence that antivenoms could be developed against specific toxin groups to cover a large range of snakes.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  20. Variability in expression of Bothrops insularis snake venom proteases: an ontogenetic approach.

    PubMed

    Zelanis, André; de Souza Ventura, Janaina; Chudzinski-Tavassi, Ana Marisa; de Fátima Domingues Furtado, Maria

    2007-05-01

    Bothrops insularis is a threatened snake endemic to Queimada Grande Island, southern coast of São Paulo, Brazil, and the occurrence of sexual abnormalities in males, females and intersexes (females with functional ovaries and rudimentary hemipenis) has been reported in this population. The aim of this study was to identify ontogenetic shifts in protease expression of offspring of captive-bred B. insularis. Three neonates from a single litter were maintained at the facilities of Laboratory of Herpetology, Institute Butantan, for 41 months. The snakes were individually milked and venoms were analyzed both by SDS-PAGE, under reducing conditions, and for biochemical activities. The venoms from the mother and from a pool of adult specimens were used as references. In regard to the electrophoretic patterns, common bands were identified mainly between 14 and 50 kDa among snakes. The occurrence of proteolytic activity was noticed predominantly between 27 and 45 kDa in zymograms. Inhibitory assays with 1,10-phenantroline (10 mM) and PMSF (5 mM) showed that venoms possessed both metalloproteases and serine proteases. Venoms of young specimens showed a higher coagulant activity than those of adults, especially upon factors X and II. All venoms presented fibrino(geno)lytic activity, degrading Aalpha and Bbeta chains of fibrinogen, and lysing fibrin plate. These findings can reflect important individual, ontogenetic and sexual differences on venom composition and are likely correlated with diet habits of this species.

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-11-01

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

  2. Snake venom: From fieldwork to the clinic: Recent insights into snake biology, together with new technology allowing high-throughput screening of venom, bring new hope for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Vonk, Freek J; Jackson, Kate; Doley, Robin; Madaras, Frank; Mirtschin, Peter J; Vidal, Nicolas

    2011-04-01

    Snake venoms are recognized here as a grossly under-explored resource in pharmacological prospecting. Discoveries in snake systematics demonstrate that former taxonomic bias in research has led to the neglect of thousands of species of potential medical use. Recent discoveries reveal an unexpectedly vast degree of variation in venom composition among snakes, from different species down to litter mates. The molecular mechanisms underlying this diversity are only beginning to be understood. However, the enormous potential that this resource represents for pharmacological prospecting is clear. New high-throughput screening systems offer greatly increased speed and efficiency in identifying and extracting therapeutically useful molecules. At the same time a global biodiversity crisis is threatening the very snake populations on which hopes for new venom-derived medications depend. Biomedical researchers, pharmacologists, clinicians, herpetologists, and conservation biologists must combine their efforts if the full potential of snake venom-derived medications is to be realized.

  3. Proteomics and antivenomics of Papuan black snake (Pseudechis papuanus) venom with analysis of its toxicological profile and the preclinical efficacy of Australian antivenoms.

    PubMed

    Pla, Davinia; Bande, Benjamin W; Welton, Ronelle E; Paiva, Owen K; Sanz, Libia; Segura, Álvaro; Wright, Christine E; Calvete, Juan J; Gutiérrez, José María; Williams, David J

    2017-01-06

    The Papuan black snake (Pseudechis papuanus Serpentes: Elapidae) is endemic to Papua New Guinea, Indonesian Papua and Australia's Torres Strait Islands. We have investigated the biological activity and proteomic composition of its venom. The P. papuanus venom proteome is dominated by a variety (n≥18) of PLA2s, which together account for ~90% of the venom proteins, and a set of low relative abundance proteins, including a short-neurotoxic 3FTx (3.1%), 3-4 PIII-SVMPs (2.8%), 3 cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRISP; 2.3%) 1-3 l-amino acid oxidase (LAAO) molecules (1.6%). Probing of a P. papuanus cDNA library with specific primers resulted in the elucidation of the full-length nucleotide sequences of six new toxins, including vespryn and NGF not found in the venom proteome, and a calglandulin protein involved in toxin expression with the venom glands. Intravenous injection of P. papuanus venom in mice induced lethality, intravascular haemolysis, pulmonary congestion and oedema, and anticoagulation after intravenous injection, and these effects are mainly due to the action of PLA2s. This study also evaluated the in vivo preclinical efficacy of Australian black snake and polyvalent Seqirus antivenoms. These antivenoms were effective in neutralising the lethal, PLA2 and anticoagulant activities of P. papuanus venom in mice. On the other hand, all of the Seqirus antivenoms tested using an antivenomic approach exhibited strong immunorecognition of all the venom components. These preclinical results suggest that Australian Seqirus(1) antivenoms may provide paraspecific protection against P. papuanus venom in humans.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  5. Rapid Radiations and the Race to Redundancy: An Investigation of the Evolution of Australian Elapid Snake Venoms.

    PubMed

    Jackson, Timothy N W; Koludarov, Ivan; Ali, Syed A; Dobson, James; Zdenek, Christina N; Dashevsky, Daniel; Op den Brouw, Bianca; Masci, Paul P; Nouwens, Amanda; Josh, Peter; Goldenberg, Jonathan; Cipriani, Vittoria; Hay, Chris; Hendrikx, Iwan; Dunstan, Nathan; Allen, Luke; Fry, Bryan G

    2016-10-26

    Australia is the stronghold of the front-fanged venomous snake family Elapidae. The Australasian elapid snake radiation, which includes approximately 100 terrestrial species in Australia, as well as Melanesian species and all the world's sea snakes, is less than 12 million years old. The incredible phenotypic and ecological diversity of the clade is matched by considerable diversity in venom composition. The clade's evolutionary youth and dynamic evolution should make it of particular interest to toxinologists, however, the majority of species, which are small, typically inoffensive, and seldom encountered by non-herpetologists, have been almost completely neglected by researchers. The present study investigates the venom composition of 28 species proteomically, revealing several interesting trends in venom composition, and reports, for the first time in elapid snakes, the existence of an ontogenetic shift in the venom composition and activity of brown snakes (Pseudonaja sp.). Trends in venom composition are compared to the snakes' feeding ecology and the paper concludes with an extended discussion of the selection pressures shaping the evolution of snake venom.

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

    PubMed Central

    Frezzatti, Rodrigo; Silveira, Paulo Flavio

    2011-01-01

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

  7. DISC ELECTROPHORESIS OF HYMENOPTERA VENOMS AND BODY PROTEINS.

    PubMed

    O'CONNOR, R; ROSENBROOK, W; ERICKSON, R

    1964-09-18

    The venom proteins of honey bee, Polistes wasp, yellow hornet, and yellow jacket are similar but not identical. Extracts of venom sacs and whole insects contain several proteins not found in the pure venoms.

  8. Venom proteomes of South and North American opisthoglyphous (Colubridae and Dipsadidae) snake species: a preliminary approach to understanding their biological roles.

    PubMed

    Peichoto, María E; Tavares, Flávio L; Santoro, Marcelo L; Mackessy, Stephen P

    2012-12-01

    Opisthoglyphous snake venoms remain under-explored despite being promising sources for ecological, evolutionary and biomedical/biotechnological research. Herein, we compared the protein composition and enzymatic properties of the venoms of Philodryas baroni (PbV), Philodryas olfersii olfersii (PooV) and Philodryas patagoniensis (PpV) from South America, and Hypsiglena torquata texana (HttV) and Trimorphodon biscutatus lambda (TblV) from North America. All venoms degraded azocasein, and this metalloproteinase activity was significantly inhibited by EDTA. PooV exhibited the highest level of catalytic activity towards synthetic substrates for serine proteinases. All venoms hydrolyzed acetylthiocholine at low levels, and only TblV showed phospholipase A(2) activity. 1D and 2D SDS-PAGE profile comparisons demonstrated species-specific components as well as several shared components. Size exclusion chromatograms from the three Philodryas venoms and HttV were similar, but TblV showed a notably different pattern. MALDI-TOF MS of crude venoms revealed as many as 49 distinct protein masses, assigned to six protein families. MALDI-TOF/TOF MS analysis of tryptic peptides confirmed the presence of cysteine-rich secretory proteins in all venoms, as well as a phospholipase A(2) and a three-finger toxin in TblV. Broad patterns of protein composition appear to follow phylogenetic lines, with finer scale variation likely influenced by ecological factors such as diet and habitat.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-11-01

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

  10. Rapid Radiations and the Race to Redundancy: An Investigation of the Evolution of Australian Elapid Snake Venoms

    PubMed Central

    Jackson, Timothy N. W.; Koludarov, Ivan; Ali, Syed A.; Dobson, James; Zdenek, Christina N.; Dashevsky, Daniel; op den Brouw, Bianca; Masci, Paul P.; Nouwens, Amanda; Josh, Peter; Goldenberg, Jonathan; Cipriani, Vittoria; Hay, Chris; Hendrikx, Iwan; Dunstan, Nathan; Allen, Luke; Fry, Bryan G.

    2016-01-01

    Australia is the stronghold of the front-fanged venomous snake family Elapidae. The Australasian elapid snake radiation, which includes approximately 100 terrestrial species in Australia, as well as Melanesian species and all the world’s true sea snakes, may be less than 12 million years old. The incredible phenotypic and ecological diversity of the clade is matched by considerable diversity in venom composition. The clade’s evolutionary youth and dynamic evolution should make it of particular interest to toxinologists, however, the majority of species, which are small, typically inoffensive, and seldom encountered by non-herpetologists, have been almost completely neglected by researchers. The present study investigates the venom composition of 28 species proteomically, revealing several interesting trends in venom composition, and reports, for the first time in elapid snakes, the existence of an ontogenetic shift in the venom composition and activity of brown snakes (Pseudonaja sp.). Trends in venom composition are compared to the snakes’ feeding ecology and the paper concludes with an extended discussion of the selection pressures shaping the evolution of snake venom. PMID:27792190

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-09-01

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

  12. Snake venomics of the Lesser Antillean pit vipers Bothrops caribbaeus and Bothrops lanceolatus: correlation with toxicological activities and immunoreactivity of a heterologous antivenom.

    PubMed

    Gutiérrez, José María; Sanz, Libia; Escolano, José; Fernández, Julián; Lomonte, Bruno; Angulo, Yamileth; Rucavado, Alexandra; Warrell, David A; Calvete, Juan J

    2008-10-01

    The venom proteomes of the snakes Bothrops caribbaeus and Bothrops lanceolatus, endemic to the Lesser Antillean islands of Saint Lucia and Martinique, respectively, were characterized by reverse-phase HPLC fractionation, followed by analysis of each chromatographic fraction by SDS-PAGE, N-terminal sequencing, MALDI-TOF mass fingerprinting, and collision-induced dissociation tandem mass spectrometry of tryptic peptides. The venoms contain proteins belonging to seven ( B. caribbaeus) and five ( B. lanceolatus) types of toxins. B. caribbaeus and B. lanceolatus venoms contain phospholipases A 2, serine proteinases, l-amino acid oxidases and zinc-dependent metalloproteinases, whereas a long disintegrin, DC-fragments and a CRISP molecule were present only in the venom of B. caribbaeus, and a C-type lectin-like molecule was characterized in the venom of B. lanceolatus. Compositional differences between venoms among closely related species from different geographic regions may be due to evolutionary environmental pressure acting on isolated populations. The venoms of these two species differed in the composition and the relative abundance of their component toxins, but they exhibited similar toxicological and enzymatic profiles in mice, characterized by lethal, hemorrhagic, edema-forming, phospholipase A 2 and proteolytic activities. The venoms of B. caribbaeus and B. lanceolatus are devoid of coagulant and defibrinogenating effects and induce only mild local myotoxicity in mice. The characteristic thrombotic effect described in human envenomings by these species was not reproduced in the mouse model. The toxicological profile observed is consistent with the abundance of metalloproteinases, PLA 2s and serine proteinases in the venoms. A polyvalent (Crotalinae) antivenom produced in Costa Rica was able to immunodeplete approximately 80% of the proteins from both B. caribbaeus and B. lanceolatus venoms, and was effective in neutralizing the lethal, hemorrhagic, phospholipase

  13. In vitro neurotoxic and myotoxic effects of the venom from the black whip snake (Demansia papuensis).

    PubMed

    Kuruppu, S; Fry, Bryan G; Hodgson, Wayne C

    2006-04-01

    1. Black whip snakes belong to the family elapidae and are found throughout the northern coastal region of Australia. The black whip snake (Demansia papuensis) is considered to be potentially dangerous due to its size and phylogenetic distinctiveness. Previous liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis of D. papuensis venom indicated a number of components within the molecular mass ranges compatible with neurotoxins. For the first time, this study examines the in vitro neurotoxic and myotoxic effects of the venom from D. papuensis. 2. Venom (10 microg/mL) caused significant inhibition of twitches elicited by stimulation (0.2 ms, 0.1 Hz, supramaximal V) of motor nerves in the chick biventer cervicis nerve-muscle preparation. This neurotoxic effect, which was postsynaptic in origin, was weak in comparison to that of most other Australian elapids. Prior addition (10 min) of polyvalent (PSAV) or tiger snake (TSAV) antivenom (5 units/mL) prevented venom-induced twitch inhibition. Addition of PSAV (5 units/mL) at t(50) failed to reverse the inhibitory effect but prevented further inhibition of nerve-mediated twitches. 3. The venom (20-50 microg/mL) is also myotoxic as indicated by a slowly developing contracture and inhibition of twitches elicited by direct stimulation (2 ms, 0.1 Hz, supramaximal V, in the presence of tubocurarine 10 micromol/L) of the chick biventer muscle. This activity was confirmed by histological examination of the muscle. 4. Fractionation and characterization of venom components is required to further investigate the reasons for the weak neurotoxic activity of D. papuensis venom.

  14. A novel synthetic quinolinone inhibitor presents proteolytic and hemorrhagic inhibitory activities against snake venom metalloproteases.

    PubMed

    Baraldi, Patrícia T; Magro, Angelo J; Matioli, Fábio F; Marcussi, Silvana; Lemke, Ney; Calderon, Leonardo A; Stábeli, Rodrigo G; Soares, Andreimar M; Correa, Arlene G; Fontes, Marcos R M

    2016-02-01

    Metalloproteases play a fundamental role in snake venom envenomation inducing hemorrhagic, fibrigen(ogen)olytic and myotoxic effects in their victims. Several snake venoms, such as those from the Bothrops genus, present important local effects which are not efficiently neutralized by conventional serum therapy. Consequently, these accidents may result in permanent sequelae and disability, creating economic and social problems, especially in developing countries, leading the attention of the World Health Organization that considered ophidic envenomations a neglected tropical disease. Aiming to produce an efficient inhibitor against bothropic venoms, we synthesized different molecules classified as quinolinones - a group of low-toxic chemical compounds widely used as antibacterial and antimycobacterial drugs - and tested their inhibitory properties against hemorrhage caused by bothropic venoms. The results from this initial screening indicated the molecule 2-hydroxymethyl-6-methoxy-1,4-dihydro-4-quinolinone (Q8) was the most effective antihemorrhagic compound among all of the assayed synthetic quinolinones. Other in vitro and in vivo experiments showed this novel compound was able to inhibit significantly the hemorrhagic and/or proteolytic activities of bothropic crude venoms and isolated snake venom metalloproteases (SVMPs) even at lower concentrations. Docking and molecular dynamic simulations were also performed to get insights into the structural basis of Q8 inhibitory mechanism against proteolytic and hemorrhagic SVMPs. These structural studies demonstrated that Q8 may form a stable complex with SVMPs, impairing the access of substrates to the active sites of these toxins. Therefore, both experimental and structural data indicate that Q8 compound is an interesting candidate for antiophidic therapy, particularly for the treatment of the hemorrhagic and necrotic effects induced by bothropic venoms.

  15. Snake venom induced local toxicities: plant secondary metabolites as an auxiliary therapy.

    PubMed

    Santhosh, M Sebastin; Hemshekhar, M; Sunitha, K; Thushara, R M; Jnaneshwari, S; Kemparaju, K; Girish, K S

    2013-01-01

    Snakebite is a serious medical and socio-economic problem affecting the rural and agricultural laborers of tropical and sub-tropical region across the world leading to high morbidity and mortality. In most of the snakebite incidences, victims usually end up with permanent tissue damage and sequelae with high socioeconomic and psychological impacts. Although, mortality has been reduced markedly due to anti-venom regimen, it is associated with several limitations. Snake venom metalloprotease, hyaluronidase and myotoxic phospholipase A2 are the kingpins of tissue necrosis and extracellular matrix degradation. Thus, inhibition of these enzymes is considered to be the rate limiting step in the management of snakebite. Unfortunately, tissue necrosis and extracellular matrix degradation persists even after the administration of anti-venom. At present, inhibitors from snake serum and plasma, several synthetic compounds and their analogs have been demonstrated to possess anti-snake venom activities, but the use of plant metabolites for this purpose has an added advantage of traditional knowledge and will make the treatment cheaper and more accessible to the affected population. Therefore, the clinical and research forums are highly oriented towards plant metabolites and interestingly, certain phytochemicals are implicated as the antibody elicitors against venom toxicity that can be exploited in designing effective anti-venoms. Based on these facts, we have made an effort to enlist plant based secondary metabolites with antiophidian abilities and their mechanism of action against locally acting enzymes/toxins in particular. The review also describes their functional groups responsible for therapeutic beneficial and certainly oblige in designing potent inhibitors against venom toxins.

  16. Purification and cloning of cysteine-rich proteins from Trimeresurus jerdonii and Naja atra venoms.

    PubMed

    Jin, Yang; Lu, Qiumin; Zhou, Xingding; Zhu, Shaowen; Li, Rui; Wang, Wanyu; Xiong, Yuliang

    2003-10-01

    Three 26 kDa proteins, named as TJ-CRVP, NA-CRVP1 and NA-CRVP2, were isolated from the venoms of Trimeresurus jerdonii and Naja atra, respectively. The N-terminal sequences of TJ-CRVP and NA-CRVPs were determined. These components were devoid of the enzymatic activities tested, such as phospholipase A(2), arginine esterase, proteolysis, L-amino acid oxidase, 5'nucleotidase, acetylcholinesterase. Furthermore, these three components did not have the following biological activities: coagulant and anticoagulant activities, lethal activity, myotoxicity, hemorrhagic activity, platelet aggregation and platelet aggregation-inhibiting activities. These proteins are named as cysteine-rich venom protein (CRVP) because their sequences showed high level of similarity with mammalian cysteine-rich secretory protein (CRISP) family. Recently, some CRISP-like proteins were also isolated from several different snake venoms, including Agkistrodon blomhoffi, Trimeresurus flavoviridis, Lanticauda semifascita and king cobra. We presumed that CRVP might be a common component in snake venoms. Of particular interest, phylogenetic analysis and sequence alignment showed that NA-CRVP1 and ophanin, both from elapid snakes, share higher similarity with CRVPs from Viperidae snakes.

  17. The Snake with the Scorpion’s Sting: Novel Three-Finger Toxin Sodium Channel Activators from the Venom of the Long-Glanded Blue Coral Snake (Calliophis bivirgatus)

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Daryl C.; Deuis, Jennifer R.; Dashevsky, Daniel; Dobson, James; Jackson, Timothy N. W.; Brust, Andreas; Xie, Bing; Koludarov, Ivan; Debono, Jordan; Hendrikx, Iwan; Hodgson, Wayne C.; Josh, Peter; Nouwens, Amanda; Baillie, Gregory J.; Bruxner, Timothy J. C.; Alewood, Paul F.; Lim, Kelvin Kok Peng; Frank, Nathaniel; Vetter, Irina; Fry, Bryan G.

    2016-01-01

    Millions of years of evolution have fine-tuned the ability of venom peptides to rapidly incapacitate both prey and potential predators. Toxicofera reptiles are characterized by serous-secreting mandibular or maxillary glands with heightened levels of protein expression. These glands are the core anatomical components of the toxicoferan venom system, which exists in myriad points along an evolutionary continuum. Neofunctionalisation of toxins is facilitated by positive selection at functional hotspots on the ancestral protein and venom proteins have undergone dynamic diversification in helodermatid and varanid lizards as well as advanced snakes. A spectacular point on the venom system continuum is the long-glanded blue coral snake (Calliophis bivirgatus), a specialist feeder that preys on fast moving, venomous snakes which have both a high likelihood of prey escape but also represent significant danger to the predator itself. The maxillary venom glands of C. bivirgatus extend one quarter of the snake’s body length and nestle within the rib cavity. Despite the snake’s notoriety its venom has remained largely unstudied. Here we show that the venom uniquely produces spastic paralysis, in contrast to the flaccid paralysis typically produced by neurotoxic snake venoms. The toxin responsible, which we have called calliotoxin (δ-elapitoxin-Cb1a), is a three-finger toxin (3FTx). Calliotoxin shifts the voltage-dependence of NaV1.4 activation to more hyperpolarised potentials, inhibits inactivation, and produces large ramp currents, consistent with its profound effects on contractile force in an isolated skeletal muscle preparation. Voltage-gated sodium channels (NaV) are a particularly attractive pharmacological target as they are involved in almost all physiological processes including action potential generation and conduction. Accordingly, venom peptides that interfere with NaV function provide a key defensive and predatory advantage to a range of invertebrate

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

    PubMed

    Pithayanukul, Pimolpan; Leanpolchareanchai, Jiraporn; Saparpakorn, Patchreenart

    2009-08-27

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

  19. Comparative sensitivity of commercially available aPTT reagents to mulga snake (Pseudechis australis) venom.

    PubMed

    Lincz, Lisa F; Scorgie, Fiona E; Johnston, Christopher I; O'Leary, Margaret; Prasad, Ritam; Seldon, Michael; Favaloro, Emmanuel; Isbister, Geoffrey K

    2014-08-01

    This study aimed to determine the relative sensitivity of activated partial thromboplastin time (aPTT) reagents to the anticoagulant effects of phospholipases in mulga snake (Pseudechis australis) venom.Twenty-one haematology laboratories participating in the Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia Quality Assurance Programs were sent human plasma samples spiked with mulga venom (n=25 total results). Results for 17 patients with mulga snake envenoming were available through the Australian Snakebite Project.Only 12 of 25 venom spiked samples returned an abnormally prolonged aPTT. Tests performed with Dade Actin FS (n=7) did not identify any of the spiked samples as abnormal. Although clotting times were significantly prolonged using the lupus anticoagulant sensitive Actin FSL (n=5, p=0.043), only one was reported as abnormal. Only laboratories using TriniCLOT aPTT S (n=6), HemosIL APTT SP (n=2) and Stago PTT-A (n=1) consistently recorded the spiked sample as being above the upper normal reference interval. Abnormally prolonged aPTTs were recorded for four of eight patients whose tests were performed with Actin FSL, five of eight patients with TriniCLOT aPTT HS, and three of three patients using TriniCLOT aPTT S.We conclude that some reagents used for routine aPTT testing are relatively insensitive to the anticoagulant effects of mulga snake venom. Tests performed with these reagents should be interpreted with caution.

  20. Peptidomics of Three Bothrops Snake Venoms: Insights Into the Molecular Diversification of Proteomes and Peptidomes*

    PubMed Central

    Tashima, Alexandre K.; Zelanis, André; Kitano, Eduardo S.; Ianzer, Danielle; Melo, Robson L.; Rioli, Vanessa; Sant'anna, Sávio S.; Schenberg, Ana C. G.; Camargo, Antônio C. M.; Serrano, Solange M. T.

    2012-01-01

    Snake venom proteomes/peptidomes are highly complex and maintenance of their integrity within the gland lumen is crucial for the expression of toxin activities. There has been considerable progress in the field of venom proteomics, however, peptidomics does not progress as fast, because of the lack of comprehensive venom sequence databases for analysis of MS data. Therefore, in many cases venom peptides have to be sequenced manually by MS/MS analysis or Edman degradation. This is critical for rare snake species, as is the case of Bothrops cotiara (BC) and B. fonsecai (BF), which are regarded as near threatened with extinction. In this study we conducted a comprehensive analysis of the venom peptidomes of BC, BF, and B. jararaca (BJ) using a combination of solid-phase extraction and reversed-phase HPLC to fractionate the peptides, followed by nano-liquid chromatography-tandem MS (LC-MS/MS) or direct infusion electrospray ionization-(ESI)-MS/MS or MALDI-MS/MS analyses. We detected marked differences in the venom peptidomes and identified peptides ranging from 7 to 39 residues in length by de novo sequencing. Forty-four unique sequences were manually identified, out of which 30 are new peptides, including 17 bradykinin-potentiating peptides, three poly-histidine-poly-glycine peptides and interestingly, 10 l-amino acid oxidase fragments. Some of the new bradykinin-potentiating peptides display significant bradykinin potentiating activity. Automated database search revealed fragments from several toxins in the peptidomes, mainly from l-amino acid oxidase, and allowed the determination of the peptide bond specificity of proteinases and amino acid occurrences for the P4-P4′ sites. We also demonstrate that the venom lyophilization/resolubilization process greatly increases the complexity of the peptidome because of the imbalance caused to the venom proteome and the consequent activity of proteinases on venom components. The use of proteinase inhibitors clearly showed

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  2. Biochemical, Pharmacological, and Structural Characterization of New Basic PLA2 Bbil-TX from Bothriopsis bilineata Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Corasolla Carregari, Victor; Stuani Floriano, Rafael; Rodrigues-Simioni, Lea; Winck, Flavia V.; Baldasso, Paulo Aparecido; Ponce-Soto, Luis Alberto; Marangoni, Sergio

    2013-01-01

    Bbil-TX, a PLA2, was purified from Bothriopsis bilineata snake venom after only one chromatographic step using RP-HPLC on μ-Bondapak C-18 column. A molecular mass of 14243.8 Da was confirmed by Q-Tof Ultima API ESI/MS (TOF MS mode) mass spectrometry. The partial protein sequence obtained was then submitted to BLASTp, with the search restricted to PLA2 from snakes and shows high identity values when compared to other PLA2s. PLA2 activity was presented in the presence of a synthetic substrate and showed a minimum sigmoidal behavior, reaching its maximal activity at pH 8.0 and 25–37°C. Maximum PLA2 activity required Ca2+ and in the presence of Cd2+, Zn2+, Mn2+, and Mg2+ it was reduced in the presence or absence of Ca2+. Crotapotin from Crotalus durissus cascavella rattlesnake venom and antihemorrhagic factor DA2-II from Didelphis albiventris opossum sera under optimal conditions significantly inhibit the enzymatic activity. Bbil-TX induces myonecrosis in mice. The fraction does not show a significant cytotoxic activity in myotubes and myoblasts (C2C12). The inflammatory events induced in the serum of mice by Bbil-TX isolated from Bothriopsis bilineata snake venom were investigated. An increase in vascular permeability and in the levels of TNF-a, IL-6, and IL-1 was was induced. Since Bbil-TX exerts a stronger proinflammatory effect, the phospholipid hydrolysis may be relevant for these phenomena. PMID:23509754

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-06-12

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

  5. Venom ophthalmia caused by venoms of spitting elapid and other snakes: Report of ten cases with review of epidemiology, clinical features, pathophysiology and management.

    PubMed

    Chu, Edward R; Weinstein, Scott A; White, Julian; Warrell, David A

    2010-09-01

    Venom ophthalmia caused by venoms of spitting elapid and other snakes: report of ten cases with review of epidemiology, clinical features, pathophysiology and management. Chu, ER, Weinstein, SA, White, J and Warrell, DA. Toxicon XX:xxx-xxx. We present ten cases of ocular injury following instillation into the eye of snake venoms or toxins by spitting elapids and other snakes. The natural history of spitting elapids and the toxinology of their venoms are reviewed together with the medical effects and management of venom ophthalmia in humans and domestic animals including both direct and allergic effects of venoms. Although the clinical features and management of envenoming following bites by spitting elapids (genera Naja and Hemachatus) are well documented, these snakes are also capable of "spraying" venom towards the eyes of predators, a defensive strategy that causes painful and potentially blinding ocular envenoming (venom ophthalmia). Little attention has been given to the detailed clinical description, clinical evolution and efficacy of treatment of venom ophthalmia and no clear management guidelines have been formulated. Knowledge of the pathophysiology of ocular envenoming is based largely on animal studies and a limited body of clinical information. A few cases of ocular exposure to venoms from crotaline viperids have also been described. Venom ophthalmia often presents with pain, hyperemia, blepharitis, blepharospasm and corneal erosions. Delay or lack of treatment may result in corneal opacity, hypopyon and/or blindness. When venom is "spat" into the eye, cranial nerve VII may be affected by local spread of venom but systemic envenoming has not been documented in human patients. Management of venom ophthalmia consists of: 1) urgent decontamination by copious irrigation 2) analgesia by vasoconstrictors with weak mydriatic activity (e.g. epinephrine) and limited topical administration of local anesthetics (e.g. tetracaine) 3) exclusion of corneal abrasions

  6. Venoms of Micrurus coral snakes: Evolutionary trends in compositional patterns emerging from proteomic analyses.

    PubMed

    Lomonte, Bruno; Rey-Suárez, Paola; Fernández, Julián; Sasa, Mahmood; Pla, Davinia; Vargas, Nancy; Bénard-Valle, Melisa; Sanz, Libia; Corrêa-Netto, Carlos; Núñez, Vitelbina; Alape-Girón, Alberto; Alagón, Alejandro; Gutiérrez, José María; Calvete, Juan J

    2016-11-01

    The application of proteomic tools to the study of snake venoms has led to an impressive growth in the knowledge about their composition (venomics), immunogenicity (antivenomics), and toxicity (toxicovenomics). About one-third of all venomic studies have focused on elapid species, especially those of the Old World. The New World elapids, represented by coral snakes, have been less studied. In recent years, however, a number of venomic studies on Micrurus species from North, Central, and South America have been conducted. An overview of these studies is presented, highlighting the emergence of some patterns and trends concerning their compositional, functional, and immunological characteristics. Results gathered to date, encompassing 18 out of the approximately 85 species of Micrurus, reveal a dichotomy of venom phenotypes regarding the relative abundance of the omnipresent phospholipases A2 (PLA2) and 'three-finger' toxins (3FTx): a group of species express a PLA2-predominant venom composition, while others display a 3FTx-predominant compositional pattern. These two divergent toxin expression phenotypes appear to be related to phylogenetic positions and geographical distributions along a North-South axis in the Americas, but further studies encompassing a higher number of species are needed to assess these hypotheses. The two contrasting phenotypes also show correlations with some toxic functionalities, complexity in the diversity of proteoforms, and immunological cross-recognition patterns. The biological significance for the emergence of a dichotomy of venom compositions within Micrurus, in some cases observed even among sympatric species that inhabit relatively small geographic areas, represents a puzzling and challenging area of research which warrants further studies.

  7. Venom of the Coral Snake Micrurus clarki: Proteomic Profile, Toxicity, Immunological Cross-Neutralization, and Characterization of a Three-Finger Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Lomonte, Bruno; Sasa, Mahmood; Rey-Suárez, Paola; Bryan, Wendy; Gutiérrez, José María

    2016-01-01

    Micrurus clarki is an uncommon coral snake distributed from the Southeastern Pacific of Costa Rica to Western Colombia, for which no information on its venom could be found in the literature. Using a ‘venomics’ approach, proteins of at least nine families were identified, with a moderate predominance of three-finger toxins (3FTx; 48.2%) over phospholipase A2 (PLA2; 36.5%). Comparison of this venom profile with those of other Micrurus species suggests that it may represent a more balanced, ‘intermediate’ type within the dichotomy between 3FTx- and PLA2-predominant venoms. M. clarki venom was strongly cross-recognized and, accordingly, efficiently neutralized by an equine therapeutic antivenom against M. nigrocinctus, revealing their high antigenic similarity. Lethal activity for mice could be reproduced by a PLA2 venom fraction, but, unexpectedly, not by fractions corresponding to 3FTxs. The most abundant venom component, hereby named clarkitoxin-I, was identified as a short-chain (type I) 3FTx, devoid of lethal effect in mice, whose target remains to be defined. Its amino acid sequence of 66 residues shows high similarity with predicted sequences of venom gland transcripts described for M. fulvius, M. browni, and M. diastema. PMID:27164141

  8. Bothrops fonsecai snake venom activities and cross-reactivity with commercial bothropic venom.

    PubMed

    Collaço, Rita de Cássia O; Randazzo-Moura, Priscila; Tamascia, Mariana L; da Silva, Igor Rapp F; Rocha, Thalita; Cogo, José C; Hyslop, Stephen; Sanny, Charles G; Rodrigues-Simioni, Léa

    2017-01-01

    In this work, we examined some biochemical and biological activities of Bothrops fonsecai venom, a pitviper endemic to southeastern Brazil, and assessed their neutralization by commercial bothropic antivenom (CAv). Cross-reactivity of venom with CAv was also assessed by immunoblotting and size-exclusion high performance chromatography (SE-HPLC). Bothrops fonsecai venom had PLA2, proteolytic and esterase activities that were neutralized to varying extents by venom:antivenom ratios of 5:1 and 5:2 (PLA2 and esterase activities) or not significantly by either venom:antivenom ratio (proteolytic activity). The minimum hemorrhagic dose (69.2μg) was totally neutralized by both ratios. Clotting time in rat citrated plasma was 33±10.5s (mean±SD; n=5) and was completely neutralized by a 5:2 ratio. Edema formation was dose-dependent (1-30μg/site) and significantly inhibited by both ratios. Venom (10-300μg/mL) caused neuromuscular blockade in extensor digitorum longus preparations; this blockade was inhibited best by a 5:2 ratio. Venom caused myonecrosis and creatine kinase release in vivo (gastrocnemius muscle) and in vitro (extensor digitorum longus) that was effectively neutralized by both venom:antivenom ratios. Immunoblotting showed that venom components of ~25-100kDa interacted with CAv. SE-HPLC profiles for venom incubated with CAv or specific anti-B. fonsecai antivenom raised in rabbits (SAv) indicated that CAv had a higher binding capacity than SAv, whereas SAv had higher affinity than CAv. These findings indicate that B. fonsecai venom contains various activities that are neutralized to different extents by CAv and suggest that CAv could be used to treat envenoming by B. fonsecai.

  9. Structural and functional analyses of DM43, a snake venom metalloproteinase inhibitor from Didelphis marsupialis serum.

    PubMed

    Neves-Ferreira, Ana G C; Perales, Jonas; Fox, Jay W; Shannon, John D; Makino, Débora L; Garratt, Richard C; Domont, Gilberto B

    2002-04-12

    DM43, an opossum serum protein inhibitor of snake venom metalloproteinases, has been completely sequenced, and its disulfide bond pattern has been experimentally determined. It shows homology to human alpha(1)B-glycoprotein, a plasma protein of unknown function and a member of the immunoglobulin supergene family. Size exclusion and dynamic laser light scattering data indicated that two monomers of DM43, each composed of three immunoglobulin-like domains, associated to form a homodimer in solution. Analysis of its glycan moiety showed the presence of N-acetylglucosamine, mannose, galactose, and sialic acid, most probably forming four biantennary N-linked chains. DM43 inhibited the fibrinogenolytic activities of bothrolysin and jararhagin and formed 1:1 stoichiometric stable complexes with both metalloproteinases. DM43 was ineffective against atrolysin C or A. No complex formation was detected between DM43 and jararhagin C, indicating the essential role of the metalloproteinase domain for interaction. Homology modeling based on the crystal structure of a killer cell inhibitory receptor suggested the existence of an I-type Ig fold, a hydrophobic dimerization surface and six surface loops potentially forming the metalloproteinase-binding surface on DM43.

  10. NMR structure of bitistatin – a missing piece in the evolutionary pathway of snake venom disintegrins.

    PubMed

    Carbajo, Rodrigo J; Sanz, Libia; Perez, Alicia; Calvete, Juan J

    2015-01-01

    Extant disintegrins, as found in the venoms of Viperidae and Crotalidae snakes (vipers and rattlesnakes, represent a family of polypeptides that block the function of β1 and β3 integrin receptors, both potently and with a high degree of selectivity. This toxin family owes its origin to the neofunctionalization of the extracellular region of an ADAM (a disintegrin and metalloprotease) molecule recruited into the snake venom gland proteome in the Jurassic. The evolutionary structural diversification of the disintegrin scaffold, from the ancestral long disintegrins to the more recently evolved medium-sized, dimeric and short disintegrins, involved the stepwise loss of pairs of class-specific disulfide linkages and the processing of the N-terminal region. NMR and crystal structures of medium-sized, dimeric and short disintegrins have been solved. However, the structure of a long disintegrin remained unknown. The present study reports the NMR solution structures of two disulfide bond conformers of the long disintegrin bitistatin from the African puff adder Bitis arietans. The findings provide insight into how a structural domain of the extracellular region of an ADAM molecule, recruited into and selectively expressed in the snake venom gland proteome as a PIII metalloprotease in the Jurassic, has subsequently been tranformed into a family of integrin receptor antagonists.

  11. On the modeling of snake venom serine proteinase interactions with benzamidine-based thrombin inhibitors

    PubMed Central

    Henriques, Elsa S.; Fonseca, Nelson; Ramos, Maria João

    2004-01-01

    Pit viper venoms contain a number of serine proteinases that exhibit one or more thrombin-like activities on fibrinogen and platelets, this being the case for the kinin-releasing and fibrinogen-clotting KN-BJ from the venom of Bothrops jararaca. A three-dimensional structural model of the KN-BJ2 serine proteinase was built by homology modeling using the snake venom plasminogen activator TSV-PA as a major template and porcine kallikrein as additional structural support. A set of intrinsic buried waters was included in the model and its behavior under dynamic conditions was molecular dynamics simulated, revealing a most interesting similarity pattern to kallikrein. The benzamidine-based thrombin inhibitors α-NAPAP, 3-TAPAP, and 4-TAPAP were docked into the refined model, allowing for a more insightful functional characterization of the enzyme and a better understanding of the reported comparatively low affinity of KN-BJ2 toward those inhibitors. PMID:15322279

  12. The pharmacological role of phosphatases (acid and alkaline phosphomonoesterases) in snake venoms related to release of purines - a multitoxin.

    PubMed

    Dhananjaya, Bhadrapura L; D'Souza, Cletus J M

    2011-02-01

    Snake venom components, acting in concert in the prey, cause their immobilization and initiate digestion. To achieve this, several hydrolytic enzymes of snake venom have evolved to interfere in various physiological processes, which are well defined. However, hydrolytic enzymes such as phosphatases (acid and alkaline phosphomonoesterases) are less studied and their pharmacological role in venoms is not clearly defined. Also, they show overlapping substrate specificities and have other common biochemical properties causing uncertainty about their identity in venoms. The near-ubiquitous distribution of these enzymes in venoms, suggests a significant role for these enzymes in envenomation. It appears that these enzymes may play a central role in liberating purines (mainly adenosine) - a multitoxin and through the action of purines help in prey immobilization. However, apart from this, these enzymes could also possess other pharmacological activities as venom enzymes have been evolved to interfere in diverse physiological processes. This has not been verified by pharmacological studies using purified enzymes. Further research is needed to biologically characterize these enzymes in snake venoms, such that their role in venom is clearly established.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2008-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  15. Antivenom cross-neutralization of the venoms of Hydrophis schistosus and Hydrophis curtus, two common sea snakes in Malaysian waters.

    PubMed

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

    2015-02-16

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  17. Delineating residues for haemolytic activities of snake venom cardiotoxin 1 from Naja naja as probed by molecular dynamics simulations and in vitro validations.

    PubMed

    Gorai, Biswajit; Sivaraman, Thirunavukkarasu

    2017-02-01

    Cardiotoxins (CTXs) are single polypeptide chain consisting of 59-62 amino acids with four disulfide bridges and globular proteins of simple β-sheet folds. The CTXs are one of principal toxic components causing haemolysis and damaging various cells and belong to three-finger toxin (TFT) superfamily of snake venoms. However, there is no natural or synthetic small molecular inhibitor to the protein toxins to date. In the present study, modes of interaction of cardiotoxin 1 (CTX1) from Indian cobra (Naja naja) with heterogeneous erythrocyte membrane (EM) model system have been extensively examined by using all-atom molecular dynamics (MD) simulations in near physiological conditions and comprehensive analyses of the MD data revealed two distinct principal regions ('head groove' and 'loop groove') of the protein toxin for establishing structural interactions with the EM system. Moreover, combined analyses of data from high-throughput virtual screening of NCI small molecular database, in vitro haemolytic assays for top-hits of the chemical compounds against crude venom of Naja naja and as well CTXs purified from the venom and pharmacokinetic examinations on the chemical compounds retarding haemolytic activities of CTXs suggested that Etidronic acid and Zoledronic acid are promising prototypic chemical inhibitors to CTXs of snake venoms.

  18. Identification of proteins interacting with ammodytoxins in Vipera ammodytes ammodytes venom by immuno-affinity chromatography.

    PubMed

    Brgles, Marija; Kurtović, Tihana; Kovačič, Lidija; Križaj, Igor; Barut, Miloš; Lang Balija, Maja; Allmaier, Günter; Marchetti-Deschmann, Martina; Halassy, Beata

    2014-01-01

    In order to perform their function, proteins frequently interact with other proteins. Various methods are used to reveal protein interacting partners, and affinity chromatography is one of them. Snake venom is composed mostly of proteins, and various protein complexes in the venom have been found to exhibit higher toxicity levels than respective components separately. Complexes can modulate envenomation activity of a venom and/or potentiate its effect. Our previous data indicate that the most toxic components of the Vipera ammodytes ammodytes (Vaa) venom isolated so far-ammodytoxins (Atxs)-are contributing to the venom's toxicity only moderately; therefore, we aimed to explore whether they have some interacting partner(s) potentiating toxicity. For screening of possible interactions, immuno-affinity chromatography combined with identification by mass spectrometry was used. Various chemistries (epoxy, carbonyldiimidazole, ethylenediamine) as well as protein G functionality were used to immobilize antibodies on monolith support, a Convective Interaction Media disk. Monoliths have been demonstrated to better suit the separation of large biomolecules. Using such approach, several proteins were indicated as potential Atx-binding proteins. Among these, the interaction of Atxs with a Kunitz-type inhibitor was confirmed by far-Western dot-blot and surface plasmon resonance measurement. It can be concluded that affinity chromatography on monolithic columns combined with mass spectrometry identification is a successful approach for screening of protein interactions and it resulted with detection of the interaction of Atx with Kunitz-type inhibitor in Vaa venom for the first time.

  19. Aqueous leaf extract of Jatropha gossypiifolia L. (Euphorbiaceae) inhibits enzymatic and biological actions of Bothrops jararaca snake venom.

    PubMed

    Félix-Silva, Juliana; Souza, Thiago; Menezes, Yamara A S; Cabral, Bárbara; Câmara, Rafael B G; Silva-Junior, Arnóbio A; Rocha, Hugo A O; Rebecchi, Ivanise M M; Zucolotto, Silvana M; Fernandes-Pedrosa, Matheus F

    2014-01-01

    Snakebites are a serious public health problem due their high morbi-mortality. The main available specific treatment is the antivenom serum therapy, which has some disadvantages, such as poor neutralization of local effects, risk of immunological reactions, high cost and difficult access in some regions. In this context, the search for alternative therapies is relevant. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate the antiophidic properties of Jatropha gossypiifolia, a medicinal plant used in folk medicine to treat snakebites. The aqueous leaf extract of the plant was prepared by decoction and phytochemical analysis revealed the presence of sugars, alkaloids, flavonoids, tannins, terpenes and/or steroids and proteins. The extract was able to inhibit enzymatic and biologic activities induced by Bothrops jararaca snake venom in vitro and in vivo. The blood incoagulability was efficiently inhibited by the extract by oral route. The hemorrhagic and edematogenic local effects were also inhibited, the former by up to 56% and the latter by 100%, in animals treated with extract by oral and intraperitoneal routes, respectively. The inhibition of myotoxic action of B. jararaca reached almost 100%. According to enzymatic tests performed, it is possible to suggest that the antiophidic activity may be due an inhibitory action upon snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) and/or serine proteinases (SVSPs), including fibrinogenolytic enzymes, clotting factors activators and thrombin like enzymes (SVTLEs), as well upon catalytically inactive phospholipases A2 (Lys49 PLA2). Anti-inflammatory activity, at least partially, could also be related to the inhibition of local effects. Additionally, protein precipitating and antioxidant activities may also be important features contributing to the activity presented. In conclusion, the results demonstrate the potential antiophidic activity of J. gossypiifolia extract, including its significant action upon local effects, suggesting that

  20. Aqueous Leaf Extract of Jatropha gossypiifolia L. (Euphorbiaceae) Inhibits Enzymatic and Biological Actions of Bothrops jararaca Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Félix-Silva, Juliana; Souza, Thiago; Menezes, Yamara A. S.; Cabral, Bárbara; Câmara, Rafael B. G.; Silva-Junior, Arnóbio A.; Rocha, Hugo A. O.; Rebecchi, Ivanise M. M.; Zucolotto, Silvana M.; Fernandes-Pedrosa, Matheus F.

    2014-01-01

    Snakebites are a serious public health problem due their high morbi-mortality. The main available specific treatment is the antivenom serum therapy, which has some disadvantages, such as poor neutralization of local effects, risk of immunological reactions, high cost and difficult access in some regions. In this context, the search for alternative therapies is relevant. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate the antiophidic properties of Jatropha gossypiifolia, a medicinal plant used in folk medicine to treat snakebites. The aqueous leaf extract of the plant was prepared by decoction and phytochemical analysis revealed the presence of sugars, alkaloids, flavonoids, tannins, terpenes and/or steroids and proteins. The extract was able to inhibit enzymatic and biologic activities induced by Bothrops jararaca snake venom in vitro and in vivo. The blood incoagulability was efficiently inhibited by the extract by oral route. The hemorrhagic and edematogenic local effects were also inhibited, the former by up to 56% and the latter by 100%, in animals treated with extract by oral and intraperitoneal routes, respectively. The inhibition of myotoxic action of B. jararaca reached almost 100%. According to enzymatic tests performed, it is possible to suggest that the antiophidic activity may be due an inhibitory action upon snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) and/or serine proteinases (SVSPs), including fibrinogenolytic enzymes, clotting factors activators and thrombin like enzymes (SVTLEs), as well upon catalytically inactive phospholipases A2 (Lys49 PLA2). Anti-inflammatory activity, at least partially, could also be related to the inhibition of local effects. Additionally, protein precipitating and antioxidant activities may also be important features contributing to the activity presented. In conclusion, the results demonstrate the potential antiophidic activity of J. gossypiifolia extract, including its significant action upon local effects, suggesting that

  1. An isoflavone from Dipteryx alata Vogel is active against the in vitro neuromuscular paralysis of Bothrops jararacussu snake venom and bothropstoxin I, and prevents venom-induced myonecrosis.

    PubMed

    Ferraz, Miriéle C; Yoshida, Edson H; Tavares, Renata V S; Cogo, José C; Cintra, Adélia C O; Dal Belo, Cháriston A; Franco, Luiz M; dos Santos, Márcio G; Resende, Flávia A; Varanda, Eliana A; Hyslop, Stephen; Puebla, Pilar; San Feliciano, Arturo; Oshima-Franco, Yoko

    2014-05-06

    Snakebite is a neglected disease and serious health problem in Brazil, with most bites being caused by snakes of the genus Bothrops. Although serum therapy is the primary treatment for systemic envenomation, it is generally ineffective in neutralizing the local effects of these venoms. In this work, we examined the ability of 7,8,3'-trihydroxy-4'-methoxyisoflavone (TM), an isoflavone from Dipteryx alata, to neutralize the neurotoxicity (in mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm preparations) and myotoxicity (assessed by light microscopy) of Bothrops jararacussu snake venom in vitro. The toxicity of TM was assessed using the Salmonella microsome assay (Ames test). Incubation with TM alone (200 μg/mL) did not alter the muscle twitch tension whereas incubation with venom (40 μg/mL) caused irreversible paralysis. Preincubation of TM (200 μg/mL) with venom attenuated the venom-induced neuromuscular blockade by 84% ± 5% (mean ± SEM; n = 4). The neuromuscular blockade caused by bothropstoxin-I (BthTX-I), the major myotoxic PLA2 of this venom, was also attenuated by TM. Histological analysis of diaphragm muscle incubated with TM showed that most fibers were preserved (only 9.2% ± 1.7% were damaged; n = 4) compared to venom alone (50.3% ± 5.4% of fibers damaged; n = 3), and preincubation of TM with venom significantly attenuated the venom-induced damage (only 17% ± 3.4% of fibers damaged; n = 3; p < 0.05 compared to venom alone). TM showed no mutagenicity in the Ames test using Salmonella strains TA98 and TA97a with (+S9) and without (-S9) metabolic activation. These findings indicate that TM is a potentially useful compound for antagonizing the neuromuscular effects (neurotoxicity and myotoxicity) of B. jararacussu venom.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  3. Comparative study of the cytolytic activity of snake venoms from African spitting cobras (Naja spp., Elapidae) and its neutralization by a polyspecific antivenom.

    PubMed

    Méndez, Ileana; Gutiérrez, José María; Angulo, Yamileth; Calvete, Juan J; Lomonte, Bruno

    2011-11-01

    Venoms of several Naja species found in Sub-Saharan Africa, and commonly known as "spitting cobras", induce a predominantly cytotoxic pattern of envenomings that may evolve into tissue necrosis and gangrene. Cytotoxic components of their venoms have been identified as members of the three-finger toxin and phospholipase A(2) protein families. In this study, an in vitro assay using the myogenic cell line C2C12, was utilized to compare the cytolytic activities of venoms from five species of spitting cobras: Naja nigricollis, Naja katiensis, Naja pallida, Naja nubiae, and Naja mossambica. These venoms were strongly cytotoxic, causing a 50% effect at ~1.5 μg/well (15 μg/ml), except for N. katiensis venom, which required nearly twice this amount. Using the cell-based assay, the ability of an equine polyspecific antivenom (EchiTab-Plus-ICP) to neutralize cytotoxicity was assessed. The antivenom completely inhibited the cytotoxic activity of all five venoms, although high antivenom/venom ratios were needed. Neutralization curves displayed the following decreasing order of efficiency: N. nubiae > N. pallida > N. mossambica > N. nigricollis > N. katiensis. Results indicate that neutralizing antibodies toward toxins responsible for this particular effect are present in the antivenom, albeit in low titers. Fucoidan, a natural sulfated polysaccharide known to inhibit the toxic effects of some basic snake venom components, was unable to reduce cytotoxicity of Naja venoms. Results emphasize the need of enhancing the immunogenicity of low molecular mass toxins during antivenom production, as well as to search for useful toxin inhibitors which could complement antivenom therapy.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1986-01-01

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

  5. Toxicity of venoms from vipers of Pelias group to crickets Gryllus assimilis and its relation to snake entomophagy.

    PubMed

    Starkov, Vladislav G; Osipov, Alexey V; Utkin, Yuri N

    2007-06-01

    The existing data indicate that snake venom is most toxic towards the natural vertebrate preys. Several species of snake include arthropods in their food. However, there is no available data on the toxicity of venom from entomophagous snakes towards their prey. We have studied the toxicity of venom from vipers of Pelias group towards crickets Gryllus assimilis. The Pelias group includes several closely related viper species inhabiting mainly the South European part of Russia, and they differ in their feeding preferences. Snakes from the Vipera renardi, Vipera lotievi, Vipera kaznakovi, and Vipera orlovi species feed on wide range of animals including insects, whereas snakes from Vipera berus and Vipera nikolskii species do not include insects in their diet. We have found that the venom from vipers that include insects in their diet possesses greater toxicity towards crickets. The greatest toxicity was observed for the venom from V. lotievi, which displays a preference for insects in its diet. Therefore, based on our data, we suggest that the viper entomophagy is not a result of behavior plasticity, but is probably determined at a genetic level.

  6. Ohanin, a novel protein from king cobra venom, induces hypolocomotion and hyperalgesia in mice.

    PubMed

    Pung, Yuh Fen; Wong, Peter T H; Kumar, Prakash P; Hodgson, Wayne C; Kini, R Manjunatha

    2005-04-01

    We have identified, purified, and determined the complete amino acid sequence of a novel protein, ohanin from Ophiophagus hannah (king cobra) venom. It is a small protein containing 107 amino acid residues with a molecular mass of 11951.47 +/- 0.67 Da as assessed by electrospray ionization-mass spectrometry. It does not show similarity to any known families of snake venom proteins and hence is the first member of a new family of snake venom proteins. It shows similarity to PRY and SPRY domain proteins. It is nontoxic up to 10 mg/kg when injected intraperitoneally in mice. Ohanin produced statistically significant and dose-dependent hypolocomotion in mice. In a pain threshold assay, it showed dose-dependent hyperalgesic effect. The ability of the protein to elicit a response at greatly reduced doses when injected intracerebroventricularly as compared with intraperitoneal administration in both the locomotion and hot plate experiments strongly suggests that ohanin acts on the central nervous system. Since the natural abundance of the protein in the venom is low (approximately 1 mg/g), a synthetic gene was constructed and expressed. The recombinant protein, which was obtained in the insoluble fraction in Escherichia coli, was purified under denaturing condition and was refolded. Recombinant ohanin is structurally and functionally similar to native protein as determined by circular dichroism and hot plate assay, suggesting that it will be useful in future structure-function relationship studies.

  7. Venomous spiders, snakes, and scorpions in the United States.

    PubMed

    Holve, Steve

    2009-04-01

    Venomous bites and stings are complex poisonings that have local and systemic effects. Mild envenomations can be treated with supportive care. Severe envenomations can be treated definitively with species-specific antivenom, although the use of these products has potential risk of immediate and a more delayed onset form of hypersensitivity reactions. Consultation with a toxicologist is recommended to help guide therapy. Field treatments such as tourniquets and incision likely cause more harm than benefit and should be avoided.

  8. Anti-proliferative Effects of Androctonus amoreuxi Scorpion and Cerastes cerastes Snake Venoms on Human Prostate Cancer Cells

    PubMed Central

    Akef, Hassan; Kotb, Nahla; Abo-Elmatty, Dina; Salem, Sayed

    2017-01-01

    The present study evaluated the effects of Androctonus amoreuxi scorpion venom, Cerastes cerastes snake venom and their mixture on prostate cancer cells (PC3). An MTT assay was used to determine the anti-proliferative effect of the venoms, while quantitative real time PCR was used to evaluate the expression of apoptosis-related genes (Bax and Bcl-2). Furthermore, colorimetric assays were used to measure the levels of malondialdehyde (MDA) and antioxidant enzymes. Our results show that the venoms significantly reduced PC3 cell viability in a dose-dependent manner. On the other hand, these venoms significantly decreased Bcl-2 gene expression. Additionally, C. cerastes venom significantly reduced Bax gene expression, while A. amoreuxi venom and a mixture of A. amoreuxi & C. cerastes venoms did not alter Bax expression. Consequently, these venoms significantly increased the Bax/Bcl-2 ratio and the oxidative stress biomarker MDA. Furthermore, these venoms also increased the activity levels of the antioxidant enzymes, catalase, superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase, glutathione reductase, and glutathione-S-transferase. Overall, the venoms have cytotoxic and anti-proliferative effects on PC3 cells. PMID:28382285

  9. Are ticks venomous animals?

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Introduction As an ecological adaptation venoms have evolved independently in several species of Metazoa. As haematophagous arthropods ticks are mainly considered as ectoparasites due to directly feeding on the skin of animal hosts. Ticks are of major importance since they serve as vectors for several diseases affecting humans and livestock animals. Ticks are rarely considered as venomous animals despite that tick saliva contains several protein families present in venomous taxa and that many Ixodida genera can induce paralysis and other types of toxicoses. Tick saliva was previously proposed as a special kind of venom since tick venom is used for blood feeding that counteracts host defense mechanisms. As a result, the present study provides evidence to reconsider the venomous properties of tick saliva. Results Based on our extensive literature mining and in silico research, we demonstrate that ticks share several similarities with other venomous taxa. Many tick salivary protein families and their previously described functions are homologous to proteins found in scorpion, spider, snake, platypus and bee venoms. This infers that there is a structural and functional convergence between several molecular components in tick saliva and the venoms from other recognized venomous taxa. We also highlight the fact that the immune response against tick saliva and venoms (from recognized venomous taxa) are both dominated by an allergic immunity background. Furthermore, by comparing the major molecular components of human saliva, as an example of a non-venomous animal, with that of ticks we find evidence that ticks resemble more venomous than non-venomous animals. Finally, we introduce our considerations regarding the evolution of venoms in Arachnida. Conclusions Taking into account the composition of tick saliva, the venomous functions that ticks have while interacting with their hosts, and the distinguishable differences between human (non-venomous) and tick salivary

  10. Snake venomics of the Armenian mountain vipers Macrovipera lebetina obtusa and Vipera raddei.

    PubMed

    Sanz, Libia; Ayvazyan, Naira; Calvete, Juan J

    2008-07-21

    Venoms from the Armenian mountain vipers Macrovipera lebetina obtusa and Vipera raddei were analyzed by RP-HPLC, N-terminal sequencing, MALDI-TOF mass fingerprinting and CID-MS/MS. The venom proteins of M.l. obtusa and V. raddei belong to 9 and 11 families, respectively. The two mountain viper venoms share bradykinin-potentiating/C-natriuretic peptides, and proteins from the dimeric distegrin, DC-fragment, CRISP, PLA(2), serine proteinase, C-type lectin-like, L-amino acid oxidase, and Zn(2+)-dependent metalloproteinase families, albeit each species exhibits distinct relative abundances. M.l. obtusa and V. raddei venoms contain unique components, e.g. the short disintegrin obtustatin in M.l. obtusa, and Kunitz-type serine proteinase inhibitor and VEGF-like molecules in V. raddei. The toxin formulation of M.l. obtusa and V. raddei venoms may be related to their adaptation to rocky mountain ecosystems. On the other hand, the possibility that the VEGF-like proteins from V. raddei underlie the reported potential therapeutic value of V. raddei venom for regenerating damaged peripheral nerves deserves further investigations. Using a similarity coefficient, we estimate that the similarity of venom proteins between M. l. obtusa and M. l. transmediterranea is less than 4%. Although this result would support the classification of M.l. obtusa and M.l. transmediterranea as different species, additional detailed genomic analyses are also required.

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

    PubMed

    Del Brutto, Oscar H

    2013-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-10-01

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

  13. Cardiovascular, haematological and neurological effects of the venom of the Papua New Guinean small-eyed snake (Micropechis ikaheka) and their neutralisation with CSL polyvalent and black snake antivenoms.

    PubMed

    Tibballs, J; Kuruppu, S; Hodgson, W C; Carroll, T; Hawdon, G; Sourial, M; Baker, T; Winkel, K

    2003-11-01

    Cardiovascular and haematological effects of venom of the small-eyed Snake (Micropechis ikaheka) were examined in ventilated anaesthetised piglets. Neurotoxic effects were examined in chick biventer cervicis nerve-muscle preparations. Immunoreactivity of venom was tested against the monovalent antivenom components in a CSL Ltd Venom Detection Kit. Neutralisation was tested in vivo and in vitro with CSL Ltd polyvalent snake and Black Snake (Pseudechis australis) antivenoms. Venom in 0.1% bovine serum albumin in saline was infused into piglets in doses 1-2000 microg/kg. Pulmonary hypertension (P= 0.0007) and depression of cardiac output (P= 0.002) were observed up to 3 h after 150-160 microg/kg. The concentration of plasma free-haemoglobin increased more than 50-fold, indicating haemolysis. Neither coagulopathy nor thrombocytopenia occurred. Creatine phosphokinase and serum potassium levels did not increase suggesting absence of acute rhabdomyolysis. The venom caused post-synaptic neurotoxicty. Immunoreactivity of venom with Black Snake antivenom was observed at very high venom concentrations. Cardiovascular effects were absent and haemolysis was less after venom was pre-incubated at 37 degrees C for 30 min with polyvalent antivenom. Neutralisation by Black Snake antivenom was less effective. The neurotoxicity was neutralised by polyvalent or Black Snake antivenoms. Human envenomation may be treated with CSL Ltd polyvalent snake antivenom.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-06-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2001-07-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  18. Amino acid sequence of two neurotoxins from the venom of the Egyptian black snake (Walterinnesia aegyptia).

    PubMed

    Samejima, Y; Aoki-Tomomatsu, Y; Yanagisawa, M; Mebs, D

    1997-02-01

    The venom of the Egyptian black snake Walterinnesia aegyptia contains at least three toxins, which act postsynaptically to block the neuromuscular transmission of isolated rat phrenic nerve-diaphragm and chicken biventer cervicis muscle. The complete amino acid sequence of the two toxins, W-III and W-IV, consisting of 62 amino acid residues, was elucidated by Edman degradation of fragments obtained after Staphylococcus aureus protease and prolylpeptidase digestion. Although the toxins exhibit close structural homology to other short-chain postsynaptic neurotoxins from Elapidae venoms, toxin IV is unique by having a free SH-group (cysteine) at position 16. In position 35 of W-III, which is located at the tip of the central loop, threonine is replaced by lysine, which may alter the interaction of the toxin with the acetylcholine receptor, since the toxin is seven times less lethal than toxin W-IV.

  19. Domain loss facilitates accelerated evolution and neofunctionalization of duplicate snake venom metalloproteinase toxin genes.

    PubMed

    Casewell, Nicholas R; Wagstaff, Simon C; Harrison, Robert A; Renjifo, Camila; Wüster, Wolfgang

    2011-09-01

    Gene duplication is a key mechanism for the adaptive evolution and neofunctionalization of gene families. Large multigene families often exhibit complex evolutionary histories as a result of frequent gene duplication acting in concordance with positive selection pressures. Alterations in the domain structure of genes, causing changes in the molecular scaffold of proteins, can also result in a complex evolutionary history and has been observed in functionally diverse multigene toxin families. Here, we investigate the role alterations in domain structure have on the tempo of evolution and neofunctionalization of multigene families using the snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) as a model system. Our results reveal that the evolutionary history of viperid (Serpentes: Viperidae) SVMPs is repeatedly punctuated by domain loss, with the single loss of the cysteine-rich domain, facilitating the formation of P-II class SVMPs, occurring prior to the convergent loss of the disintegrin domain to form multiple P-I SVMP structures. Notably, the majority of phylogenetic branches where domain loss was inferred to have occurred exhibited highly significant evidence of positive selection in surface-exposed amino acid residues, resulting in the neofunctionalization of P-II and P-I SVMP classes. These results provide a valuable insight into the mechanisms by which complex gene families evolve and detail how the loss of domain structures can catalyze the accelerated evolution of novel gene paralogues. The ensuing generation of differing molecular scaffolds encoded by the same multigene family facilitates gene neofunctionalization while presenting an evolutionary advantage through the retention of multiple genes capable of encoding functionally distinct proteins.

  20. Exploring and understanding the functional role, and biochemical and structural characteristics of an acidic phospholipase A2, AplTx-I, purified from Agkistrodon piscivorus leucostoma snake venom.

    PubMed

    Resende, L M; Almeida, J R; Schezaro-Ramos, R; Collaço, R C O; Simioni, L R; Ramírez, D; González, W; Soares, A M; Calderon, L A; Marangoni, S; da Silva, S L

    2017-03-01

    Phospholipases A2 (PLA2s) constitute a class of extensively studied toxins, isolated from snake venoms. Basic PLA2 isoforms mediate various toxicological effects, while the acidic isoforms generally have higher enzymatic activities, but do not promote evident toxic effects. The functions of these acidic isoforms in snake venoms are still not completely understood and more studies are needed to characterize the biological functions and diversification of acidic toxins in order to justify their abundant presence in these secretions. Recently, Lomonte and collaborators demonstrated, in a proteomic and toxicological study, high concentrations of PLA2s in the venom of Agkistrodon piscivorus leucostoma. We have, herein, purified and characterized an acidic PLA2 from this snake venom, denominated AplTx-I, in order to better understand its biochemical and structural characteristics, as well as its biological effects. AplTx-I was purified using two chromatographic steps, in association with enzymatic and biological assays. The acidic toxin was found to be one of the most abundant proteins in the venom of A. p. leucostoma; the protein was monomeric with a molecular mass of 13,885.8 Da, as identified by mass spectrometry ESI-TOF and electrophoresis. The toxin has similar primary and tridimensional structures to those of other acidic PLA2s, a theoretical and experimental isoelectric point of ≈5.12, and a calcium-dependent enzyme activity of 25.8985 nM/min/mg, with maximum values at 37 °C and pH 8.0. Despite its high enzymatic activity on synthetic substrate, AplTx-I did not induce high or significant myotoxic, coagulant, anticoagulant, edema, neuromuscular toxicity in mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm preparations or antibacterial activities. Interestingly, AplTx-I triggered a high and selective neuromuscular toxicity in chick biventer cervicis preparations. These findings are relevant to provide a deeper understanding of the pharmacology, role and diversification of acidic

  1. Purification and biochemical characterization of three myotoxins from Bothrops mattogrossensis snake venom with toxicity against Leishmania and tumor cells.

    PubMed

    de Moura, Andréa A; Kayano, Anderson M; Oliveira, George A; Setúbal, Sulamita S; Ribeiro, João G; Barros, Neuza B; Nicolete, Roberto; Moura, Laura A; Fuly, Andre L; Nomizo, Auro; da Silva, Saulo L; Fernandes, Carla F C; Zuliani, Juliana P; Stábeli, Rodrigo G; Soares, Andreimar M; Calderon, Leonardo A

    2014-01-01

    Bothrops mattogrossensis snake is widely distributed throughout eastern South America and is responsible for snakebites in this region. This paper reports the purification and biochemical characterization of three new phospholipases A2 (PLA2s), one of which is presumably an enzymatically active Asp49 and two are very likely enzymatically inactive Lys49 PLA2 homologues. The purification was obtained after two chromatographic steps on ion exchange and reverse phase column. The 2D SDS-PAGE analysis revealed that the proteins have pI values around 10, are each made of a single chain, and have molecular masses near 13 kDa, which was confirmed by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. The N-terminal similarity analysis of the sequences showed that the proteins are highly homologous with other Lys49 and Asp49 PLA2s from Bothrops species. The PLA2s isolated were named BmatTX-I (Lys49 PLA2-like), BmatTX-II (Lys49 PLA2-like), and BmatTX-III (Asp49 PLA2). The PLA2s induced cytokine release from mouse neutrophils and showed cytotoxicity towards JURKAT (leukemia T) and SK-BR-3 (breast adenocarcinoma) cell lines and promastigote forms of Leishmania amazonensis. The structural and functional elucidation of snake venoms components may contribute to a better understanding of the mechanism of action of these proteins during envenomation and their potential pharmacological and therapeutic applications.

  2. Purification and Biochemical Characterization of Three Myotoxins from Bothrops mattogrossensis Snake Venom with Toxicity against Leishmania and Tumor Cells

    PubMed Central

    de Moura, Andréa A.; Kayano, Anderson M.; Oliveira, George A.; Setúbal, Sulamita S.; Ribeiro, João G.; Barros, Neuza B.; Nicolete, Roberto; Moura, Laura A.; Fuly, Andre L.; Nomizo, Auro; da Silva, Saulo L.; Fernandes, Carla F. C.; Zuliani, Juliana P.; Stábeli, Rodrigo G.; Soares, Andreimar M.; Calderon, Leonardo A.

    2014-01-01

    Bothrops mattogrossensis snake is widely distributed throughout eastern South America and is responsible for snakebites in this region. This paper reports the purification and biochemical characterization of three new phospholipases A2 (PLA2s), one of which is presumably an enzymatically active Asp49 and two are very likely enzymatically inactive Lys49 PLA2 homologues. The purification was obtained after two chromatographic steps on ion exchange and reverse phase column. The 2D SDS-PAGE analysis revealed that the proteins have pI values around 10, are each made of a single chain, and have molecular masses near 13 kDa, which was confirmed by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. The N-terminal similarity analysis of the sequences showed that the proteins are highly homologous with other Lys49 and Asp49 PLA2s from Bothrops species. The PLA2s isolated were named BmatTX-I (Lys49 PLA2-like), BmatTX-II (Lys49 PLA2-like), and BmatTX-III (Asp49 PLA2). The PLA2s induced cytokine release from mouse neutrophils and showed cytotoxicity towards JURKAT (leukemia T) and SK-BR-3 (breast adenocarcinoma) cell lines and promastigote forms of Leishmania amazonensis. The structural and functional elucidation of snake venoms components may contribute to a better understanding of the mechanism of action of these proteins during envenomation and their potential pharmacological and therapeutic applications. PMID:24724078

  3. Metalloproteases Affecting Blood Coagulation, Fibrinolysis and Platelet Aggregation from Snake Venoms: Definition and Nomenclature of Interaction Sites

    PubMed Central

    Kini, R. Manjunatha; Koh, Cho Yeow

    2016-01-01

    Snake venom metalloproteases, in addition to their contribution to the digestion of the prey, affect various physiological functions by cleaving specific proteins. They exhibit their activities through activation of zymogens of coagulation factors, and precursors of integrins or receptors. Based on their structure–function relationships and mechanism of action, we have defined classification and nomenclature of functional sites of proteases. These metalloproteases are useful as research tools and in diagnosis and treatment of various thrombotic and hemostatic conditions. They also contribute to our understanding of molecular details in the activation of specific factors involved in coagulation, platelet aggregation and matrix biology. This review provides a ready reference for metalloproteases that interfere in blood coagulation, fibrinolysis and platelet aggregation. PMID:27690102

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Padula, Andrew M; Winkel, Kenneth D

    2016-04-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-11-01

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

  7. Bothrops jararaca and Bothrops erythromelas Snake Venoms Promote Cell Cycle Arrest and Induce Apoptosis via the Mitochondrial Depolarization of Cervical Cancer Cells

    PubMed Central

    Gomes, Dayanne Lopes; Martelli Palomino, Gustavo; da Silva, Wilmar Dias; Gonçalves, Ana Katherine; Fernandes-Pedrosa, Matheus de Freitas; Crispim, Janaina Cristiana de Oliveira

    2016-01-01

    Bothrops jararaca (BJ) and Bothrops erythromelas (BE) are viper snakes found in South-Southeast and Northeast regions of Brazil, respectively. Snake venoms are bioactive neurotoxic substances synthesized and stored by venom glands, with different physiological and pharmacological effects, recently suggesting a possible preference for targets in cancer cells; however, mechanisms of snakes have been little studied. Here, we investigated the mechanism responsible for snake crude venoms toxicity in cultured cervical cancer cells SiHa and HeLa. We show that BJ and BE snake crude venoms exert cytotoxic effects to these cells. The percentage of apoptotic cells and cell cycle analysis and cell proliferation were assessed by flow cytometry and MTT assay. Detection of mitochondrial membrane potential (Rhodamine-123), nuclei morphological change, and DNA fragmentation were examined by staining with DAPI. The results showed that both the BJ and BE venoms were capable of inhibiting tumor cell proliferation, promoting cytotoxicity and death by apoptosis of target SiHa and HeLa cells when treated with BJ and BE venoms. Furthermore, data revealed that both BJ venoms in SiHa cell promoted nuclear condensation, fragmentation, and formation of apoptotic bodies by DAPI assay, mitochondrial damage by Rhodamine-123, and cell cycle block in the G1-G0 phase. BJ and BE venoms present anticancer potential, suggesting that both Bothrops venoms could be used as prototypes for the development of new therapies. PMID:28050190

  8. Snake venom toxins. Purification and properties of low-molecular-weight polypeptides of Dendroaspis polylepis polylepis (black mamba) venom.

    PubMed

    Strydom, D J

    1976-10-01

    Twelve low-molecular-weight proteins, of which eleven have subcutaneous LD50 values of less than 40 mug/g mouse, were purified from Dendroaspis polylepis polylepis venom. Ion-exchange chromatography on Amberlite CG-50 and ion-exchange chromatography on carboxymethyl-cellulose and/or phosphocellulose was used for the purification. The amino-terminal sequences of these proteins were determined and used to indicate that five groups of low-molecular-weight polypeptides are to be found in black mamba venom. Proteins from two of these groups which have low toxicity individually, when used together show synergism, in that their toxicity in combination is greater than the sum of their individual toxicities.

  9. Exploring the venom of the forest cobra snake: Toxicovenomics and antivenom profiling of Naja melanoleuca.

    PubMed

    Lauridsen, Line P; Laustsen, Andreas H; Lomonte, Bruno; Gutiérrez, José María

    2017-01-06

    A toxicovenomic analysis of the venom of the forest cobra, N. melanoleuca, was performed, revealing the presence of a total of 52 proteins by proteomics analysis. The most abundant proteins belong to the three-finger toxins (3FTx) (57.1wt%), which includes post-synaptically acting α-neurotoxins. Phospholipases A2 (PLA2) were the second most abundant group of proteins (12.9wt%), followed by metalloproteinases (SVMPs) (9.7wt%), cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRISPs) (7.6wt%), and Kunitz-type serine proteinase inhibitors (3.8wt%). A number of additional protein families comprised each <3wt% of venom proteins. A toxicity screening of the fractions, using the mouse lethality test, identified toxicity in RP-HPLC peaks 3, 4, 5 and 8, all of them containing α-neurotoxins of the 3FTx family, whereas the rest of the fractions did not show toxicity at a dose of 0.53mg/kg. Three polyspecific antivenoms manufactured in South Africa and India were tested for their immunoreactivity against crude venom and fractions of N. melanoleuca. Overall, antivenoms immunorecognized all fractions in the venom, the South African antivenom showing a higher titer against the neurotoxin-containing fractions. This toxicovenomic study identified the 3FTx group of α-neurotoxins in the venom of N. melanoleuca as the relevant targets to be neutralized.

  10. Cell adhesion molecules involved in the leukocyte recruitment induced by venom of the snake Bothrops jararaca.

    PubMed Central

    Zamuner, Stella R; Teixeira, Catarina F P

    2002-01-01

    It has been shown that Bothrops jararaca venom (BjV) induces a significant leukocyte accumulation, mainly neutrophils, at the local of tissue damage. Therefore, the role of the adhesion molecules intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1), LECAM-1, CD18, leukocyte function-associated antigen-1 (LFA-1) and platelet endothelial cell adhesion molecule-1 (PECAM-1) on the BjV-induced neutrophil accumulation and the correlation with release of LTB4, TXA2, tumor necrosis factor-alpha, interleukin (IL)-1 and IL-6 have been investigated. Anti-mouse LECAM-1, LFA-1, ICAM-1 and PECAM-1 monoclonal antibody injection resulted in a reduction of 42%, 80%, 66% and 67%, respectively, of neutrophil accumulation induced by BjV (250 microg/kg, intraperitoneal) injection in male mice compared with isotype-matched control injected animals. The anti-mouse CD18 monoclonal antibody had no significant effect on venom-induced neutrophil accumulation. Concentrations of LTB(4), TXA(2), IL-6 and TNF-alpha were significant increased in the peritoneal exudates of animals injected with venom, whereas no increment in IL-1 was detected. This results suggest that ICAM-1, LECAM-1, LFA-1 and PECAM-1, but not CD18, adhesion molecules are involved in the recruitment of neutrophils into the inflammatory site induced by BjV. This is the first in vivo evidence that snake venom is able to up-regulate the expression of adhesion molecules by both leukocytes and endothelial cells. This venom effect may be indirect, probably through the release of the inflammatory mediators evidenced in the present study. PMID:12581499

  11. Comparison of the effect of Crotalus simus and Crotalus durissus ruruima venoms on the equine antibody response towards Bothrops asper venom: implications for the production of polyspecific snake antivenoms.

    PubMed

    Dos-Santos, Maria Cristina; Arroyo, Cynthia; Solano, Sergio; Herrera, María; Villalta, Mauren; Segura, Alvaro; Estrada, Ricardo; Gutiérrez, José María; León, Guillermo

    2011-02-01

    Antivenoms are preparations of immunoglobulins purified from the plasma of animals immunized with snake venoms. Depending on the number of venoms used during the immunization, antivenoms can be monospecific (if venom from a single species is used) or polyspecific (if venoms from several species are used). In turn, polyspecific antivenoms can be prepared by purifying antibodies from the plasma of animals immunized with a mixture of venoms, or by mixing antibodies purified from the plasma of animals immunized separately with single venom. The suitability of these strategies to produce polyspecific antibothropic-crotalic antivenoms was assessed using as models the venoms of Bothrops asper, Crotalus simus and Crotalus durissus ruruima. It was demonstrated that, when used as co-immunogen, C. simus and C. durissus ruruima venoms exert a deleterious effect on the antibody response towards different components of B. asper venom and in the neutralization of hemorrhagic and coagulant effect of this venom when compared with a monospecific B. asper antivenom. Polyspecific antivenoms produced by purifying immunoglobulins from the plasma of animals immunized with venom mixtures showed higher antibody titers and neutralizing capacity than those produced by mixing antibodies purified from the plasma of animals immunized separately with single venom. Thus, despite the deleterious effect of Crotalus sp venoms on the immune response against B. asper venom, the use of venom mixtures is more effective than the immunization with separate venoms for the preparation of polyspecific bothropic-crotalic antivenoms.

  12. Complete amino-acid sequence, crystallization and preliminary X-ray diffraction studies of leucurolysin-a, a nonhaemorrhagic metalloproteinase from Bothrops leucurus snake venom

    PubMed Central

    Ferreira, Rodrigo Novaes; Rates, Breno; Richardson, Michael; Guimarães, Beatriz Gomes; Sanchez, Eládio Oswaldo Flores; de Castro Pimenta, Adriano Monteiro; Nagem, Ronaldo Alves Pinto

    2009-01-01

    Leucurolysin-a (leuc-a) is a class P-I snake-venom metalloproteinase isolated from the venom of the South American snake Bothrops leucurus (white-tailed jararaca). The mature protein is composed of 202 amino-acid residues in a single polypeptide chain. It contains a blocked N-terminus and is not glycosylated. In vitro studies revealed that leuc-a dissolves clots made either from purified fibrinogen or from whole blood. Unlike some other venom fibrinolytic metalloproteinases, leuc-a has no haemorrhagic activity. Leuc-a was sequenced and was crystallized using the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion technique. Crystals were obtained using PEG 6000 or PEG 1500. Diffraction data to 1.80 and 1.60 Å resolution were collected from two crystals (free enzyme and the endogenous ligand–protein complex, respectively). They both belonged to space group P212121, with very similar unit-cell parameters (a = 44.0, b = 56.2, c = 76.3 Å for the free-enzyme crystal). PMID:19652343

  13. Multi-Level Induction of Categories: Venomous Snakes Hijack the Learning of Lower Levels

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

    The induction of categories and concepts from examples—which plays an important role in how we come to organize and understand the world—can happen at multiple levels, but how does competing values of these different levels affect their learning? Using perceptually rich images of snakes that could be categorized by their specific genus or a broader category, and that varied in value (whether the snake was venomous vs. whether it was tropical), we asked participants to attend to one level but tested induction at both levels. We found an interaction between study instruction and intrinsic value: Participants in the low-value condition were better able to induce the instructed level, whereas participants in the high-value condition, were significantly better at learning the broad category (i.e., venomness), regardless of instruction. Our results suggest that intrinsically valuable features can affect learning by disrupting the intentional learning of other, task-relevant information, but enhancing the incidental learning of these same features. PMID:24966070

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

  15. BbMP-1, a new metalloproteinase isolated from Bothrops brazili snake venom with in vitro antiplasmodial properties.

    PubMed

    Kayano, Anderson M; Simões-Silva, Rodrigo; Medeiros, Patrícia S M; Maltarollo, Vinícius G; Honorio, Kathia M; Oliveira, Eliandre; Albericio, Fernando; da Silva, Saulo L; Aguiar, Anna Caroline C; Krettli, Antoniana U; Fernandes, Carla F C; Zuliani, Juliana P; Calderon, Leonardo A; Stábeli, Rodrigo G; Soares, Andreimar M

    2015-11-01

    This study describes the biochemical and functional characterization of a new metalloproteinase named BbMP-1, isolated from Bothrops brazili venom. BbMP-1 was homogeneous on SDS-PAGE, presented molecular mass of 22,933Da and pI 6.4. The primary structure was partially elucidated with high identity with others metalloproteinases from Viperidae venoms. The enzymatic activity on azocasein was evaluated in different experimental conditions (pH, temperature). A significant reduction in enzyme activity after exposure to chelators of divalent cations (EDTA), reducing agents (DTT), pH less than 5.0 or temperatures higher than 45 °C was observed. BbMP-1 showed activity on fibrinogen degrading Aα chain quickly and to a lesser extent the Bβ chain. Also demostrated to be weakly hemorrhagic, presenting however, significant myotoxic and edematogenic activity. The in vitro activity of BbMP-1 against Plasmodium falciparum showed an IC50 of 3.2 ± 2.0 μg/mL. This study may help to understand the pathophysiological effects induced by this group of toxin and their participation in the symptoms observed in cases of snake envenomation. Moreover, this result is representative for this group of proteins and shows the biotechnological potential of BbMP-1 by the demonstration of its antiplasmodial activity.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-09-01

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

  17. Comparison of Phylogeny, Venom Composition and Neutralization by Antivenom in Diverse Species of Bothrops Complex

    PubMed Central

    Peixoto, Pedro S.; Bernardoni, Juliana L.; Oliveira, Sâmella S.; Portes-Junior, José Antonio; Mourão, Rosa Helena V.; Lima-dos-Santos, Isa; Sano-Martins, Ida S.; Chalkidis, Hipócrates M.; Valente, Richard H.; Moura-da-Silva, Ana M.

    2013-01-01

    In Latin America, Bothrops snakes account for most snake bites in humans, and the recommended treatment is administration of multispecific Bothrops antivenom (SAB – soro antibotrópico). However, Bothrops snakes are very diverse with regard to their venom composition, which raises the issue of which venoms should be used as immunizing antigens for the production of pan-specific Bothrops antivenoms. In this study, we simultaneously compared the composition and reactivity with SAB of venoms collected from six species of snakes, distributed in pairs from three distinct phylogenetic clades: Bothrops, Bothropoides and Rhinocerophis. We also evaluated the neutralization of Bothrops atrox venom, which is the species responsible for most snake bites in the Amazon region, but not included in the immunization antigen mixture used to produce SAB. Using mass spectrometric and chromatographic approaches, we observed a lack of similarity in protein composition between the venoms from closely related snakes and a high similarity between the venoms of phylogenetically more distant snakes, suggesting little connection between taxonomic position and venom composition. P-III snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) are the most antigenic toxins in the venoms of snakes from the Bothrops complex, whereas class P-I SVMPs, snake venom serine proteinases and phospholipases A2 reacted with antibodies in lower levels. Low molecular size toxins, such as disintegrins and bradykinin-potentiating peptides, were poorly antigenic. Toxins from the same protein family showed antigenic cross-reactivity among venoms from different species; SAB was efficient in neutralizing the B. atrox venom major toxins. Thus, we suggest that it is possible to obtain pan-specific effective antivenoms for Bothrops envenomations through immunization with venoms from only a few species of snakes, if these venoms contain protein classes that are representative of all species to which the antivenom is targeted. PMID

  18. Comparison of phylogeny, venom composition and neutralization by antivenom in diverse species of bothrops complex.

    PubMed

    Sousa, Leijiane F; Nicolau, Carolina A; Peixoto, Pedro S; Bernardoni, Juliana L; Oliveira, Sâmella S; Portes-Junior, José Antonio; Mourão, Rosa Helena V; Lima-dos-Santos, Isa; Sano-Martins, Ida S; Chalkidis, Hipócrates M; Valente, Richard H; Moura-da-Silva, Ana M

    2013-01-01

    In Latin America, Bothrops snakes account for most snake bites in humans, and the recommended treatment is administration of multispecific Bothrops antivenom (SAB--soro antibotrópico). However, Bothrops snakes are very diverse with regard to their venom composition, which raises the issue of which venoms should be used as immunizing antigens for the production of pan-specific Bothrops antivenoms. In this study, we simultaneously compared the composition and reactivity with SAB of venoms collected from six species of snakes, distributed in pairs from three distinct phylogenetic clades: Bothrops, Bothropoides and Rhinocerophis. We also evaluated the neutralization of Bothrops atrox venom, which is the species responsible for most snake bites in the Amazon region, but not included in the immunization antigen mixture used to produce SAB. Using mass spectrometric and chromatographic approaches, we observed a lack of similarity in protein composition between the venoms from closely related snakes and a high similarity between the venoms of phylogenetically more distant snakes, suggesting little connection between taxonomic position and venom composition. P-III snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) are the most antigenic toxins in the venoms of snakes from the Bothrops complex, whereas class P-I SVMPs, snake venom serine proteinases and phospholipases A2 reacted with antibodies in lower levels. Low molecular size toxins, such as disintegrins and bradykinin-potentiating peptides, were poorly antigenic. Toxins from the same protein family showed antigenic cross-reactivity among venoms from different species; SAB was efficient in neutralizing the B. atrox venom major toxins. Thus, we suggest that it is possible to obtain pan-specific effective antivenoms for Bothrops envenomations through immunization with venoms from only a few species of snakes, if these venoms contain protein classes that are representative of all species to which the antivenom is targeted.

  19. Neutralization of cobra venom by cocktail antiserum against venom proteins of cobra (Naja naja naja).

    PubMed

    Venkatesan, C; Sarathi, M; Balasubramanaiyan, G; Vimal, S; Madan, N; Sundar Raj, N; Mohammed Yusuf Bilal, S; Nazeer Basha, A; Farook, M A; Sahul Hameed, A S; Sridevi, G

    2014-01-01

    Naja naja venom was characterized by its immunochemical properties and electrophoretic pattern which revealed eight protein bands (14 kDa, 24 kDa, 29 kDa, 45 kDa, 48 kDa, 65 kDa, 72 kDa and 99 kDa) by SDS-PAGE in reducing condition after staining with Coomassie Brilliant Blue. The results showed that Naja venom presented high lethal activity. Whole venom antiserum or individual venom protein antiserum (14 kDa, 29 kDa, 65 kDa, 72 kDa and 99 kDa) of venom could recognize N. naja venom by Western blotting and ELISA, and N. naja venom presented antibody titer when assayed by ELISA. The neutralization tests showed that the polyvalent antiserum neutralized lethal activities by both in vivo and in vitro studies using mice and Vero cells. The antiserum could neutralize the lethal activities in in-vivo and antivenom administered after injection of cobra venom through intraperitoneal route in mice. The cocktail antiserum also could neutralize the cytotoxic activities in Vero cell line by MTT and Neutral red assays. The results of the present study suggest that cocktail antiserum neutralizes the lethal activities in both in vitro and in vivo models using the antiserum against cobra venom and its individual venom proteins serum produced in rabbits.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-09-01

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

  1. Molecular evolution of vertebrate neurotrophins: co-option of the highly conserved nerve growth factor gene into the advanced snake venom arsenalf.

    PubMed

    Sunagar, Kartik; Fry, Bryan Grieg; Jackson, Timothy N W; Casewell, Nicholas R; Undheim, Eivind A B; Vidal, Nicolas; Ali, Syed A; King, Glenn F; Vasudevan, Karthikeyan; Vasconcelos, Vitor; Antunes, Agostinho

    2013-01-01

    Neurotrophins are a diverse class of structurally related proteins, essential for neuronal development, survival, plasticity and regeneration. They are characterized by major family members, such as the nerve growth factors (NGF), brain-derived neurotrophic factors (BDNF) and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3), which have been demonstrated here to lack coding sequence variations and follow the regime of negative selection, highlighting their extremely important conserved role in vertebrate homeostasis. However, in stark contrast, venom NGF secreted as part of the chemical arsenal of the venomous advanced snake family Elapidae (and to a lesser extent Viperidae) have characteristics consistent with the typical accelerated molecular evolution of venom components. This includes a rapid rate of diversification under the significant influence of positive-selection, with the majority of positively-selected sites found in the secreted β-polypeptide chain (74%) and on the molecular surface of the protein (92%), while the core structural and functional residues remain highly constrained. Such focal mutagenesis generates active residues on the toxin molecular surface, which are capable of interacting with novel biological targets in prey to induce a myriad of pharmacological effects. We propose that caenophidian NGFs could participate in prey-envenoming by causing a massive release of chemical mediators from mast cells to mount inflammatory reactions and increase vascular permeability, thereby aiding the spread of other toxins and/or by acting as proapoptotic factors. Despite their presence in reptilian venom having been known for over 60 years, this is the first evidence that venom-secreted NGF follows the molecular evolutionary pattern of other venom components, and thus likely participates in prey-envenomation.

  2. Molecular Evolution of Vertebrate Neurotrophins: Co-Option of the Highly Conserved Nerve Growth Factor Gene into the Advanced Snake Venom Arsenalf

    PubMed Central

    Sunagar, Kartik; Fry, Bryan Grieg; Jackson, Timothy N. W.; Casewell, Nicholas R.; Undheim, Eivind A. B.; Vidal, Nicolas; Ali, Syed A.; King, Glenn F.; Vasudevan, Karthikeyan; Vasconcelos, Vitor; Antunes, Agostinho

    2013-01-01

    Neurotrophins are a diverse class of structurally related proteins, essential for neuronal development, survival, plasticity and regeneration. They are characterized by major family members, such as the nerve growth factors (NGF), brain-derived neurotrophic factors (BDNF) and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3), which have been demonstrated here to lack coding sequence variations and follow the regime of negative selection, highlighting their extremely important conserved role in vertebrate homeostasis. However, in stark contrast, venom NGF secreted as part of the chemical arsenal of the venomous advanced snake family Elapidae (and to a lesser extent Viperidae) have characteristics consistent with the typical accelerated molecular evolution of venom components. This includes a rapid rate of diversification under the significant influence of positive-selection, with the majority of positively-selected sites found in the secreted β-polypeptide chain (74%) and on the molecular surface of the protein (92%), while the core structural and functional residues remain highly constrained. Such focal mutagenesis generates active residues on the toxin molecular surface, which are capable of interacting with novel biological targets in prey to induce a myriad of pharmacological effects. We propose that caenophidian NGFs could participate in prey-envenoming by causing a massive release of chemical mediators from mast cells to mount inflammatory reactions and increase vascular permeability, thereby aiding the spread of other toxins and/or by acting as proapoptotic factors. Despite their presence in reptilian venom having been known for over 60 years, this is the first evidence that venom-secreted NGF follows the molecular evolutionary pattern of other venom components, and thus likely participates in prey-envenomation. PMID:24312363

  3. Adverse drug reaction profile of anti-snake venom in a rural tertiary care teaching hospital

    PubMed Central

    Deshpande, Rushikesh Prabhakar; Motghare, Vijay Motiram; Padwal, Sudhir Laxman; Pore, Rakesh Ramkrishna; Bhamare, Chetanraj Ghanshyam; Deshmukh, Vinod Shivaji; Pise, Harshal Nutan

    2013-01-01

    Objectives The study was carried out with the aim of evaluation of the adverse drug reaction profile of anti-snake venom serum (ASV) in a rural tertiary care hospital. Methods An observational study was conducted in SRTR Medical College, Ambajogai, Maharashtra, India. A total number of 296 indoor case papers of snake bite from February to September 2011 and June to August 2012 were retrieved from the record section and the antivenom reactions were assessed. In addition, basic epidemiological data and prescribing practices of ASV were also analyzed. Results Vasculotoxic snake bites were more common (50.61%) than neuroparalytic ones (22.56%). Mild envenomation was the commonest presentation. A total of 92 (56.10%) patients who received ASV suffered from antivenom reactions. The most common nature of reaction was chills, rigors (69.56%) followed by nausea and vomiting (34.8%). 10-15% patients suffered from moderate to severe reactions like hypotension and sudden respiratory arrest. We did not find any dose response relationship of ASV to risk of reactions (odds ratio 0.37). Intradermal sensitivity test was performed in about 72% cases. Conclusion Our study showed a higher incidence of reactions to ASV at our institute. PMID:24396245

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

    PubMed

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

    2009-03-31

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

  5. Primary structure and characterization of a non hemorrhagic metalloproteinase with fibrinolytic activity, from the snake venom of Protobothrops tokarensis (Tokara-habu).

    PubMed

    Oyama, Etsuko; Kitagawa, Yasuyuki; Takahashi, Hidenobu

    2013-08-01

    A low molecular weight metalloproteinase, named PT-H₂ protease, with fibrinolytic activity, was purified from the venom of Protobothrops tokarensis (Tokara-habu) by gel-filtration using Sephadex G-100, and ion-exchange chromatographies using CM-Sepharose Fast Flow and Mono S HR 5/5. By this procedure, about 85 mg of purified protein were obtained from 1.0 g of P. tokarensis venom. The purified protein showed a single protein band with a molecular weight of about 22.5 kDa on sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) under reducing conditions. The pI of purified protein showed a single band of 6.8. This proteinase showed a strong fibrinolytic activity. Further, this proteinase showed fibrinogenase activity and proteolytic activity against synthetic substrates for matrix metalloproteinase, ADAM-17, and TACE (tumor necrosis factor converting enzyme). These proteolytic activities were inhibited by metalloproteinase inhibitors such as EDTA. PT-H₂ protease consisted of 201 amino acid residues and had a calculated molecular weight of 22,994.7 Da. This protein showed conservation of the Zn²⁺-binding HEXXHXXGXXHD sequence. PT-H₂ protease showed high homology from 51.7 to 99.5% with amino acid sequences of other snake venom metalloproteinases.

  6. Mapping Proteoforms and Protein Complexes From King Cobra Venom Using Both Denaturing and Native Top-down Proteomics.

    PubMed

    Melani, Rafael D; Skinner, Owen S; Fornelli, Luca; Domont, Gilberto B; Compton, Philip D; Kelleher, Neil L

    2016-07-01

    Characterizing whole proteins by top-down proteomics avoids a step of inference encountered in the dominant bottom-up methodology when peptides are assembled computationally into proteins for identification. The direct interrogation of whole proteins and protein complexes from the venom of Ophiophagus hannah (king cobra) provides a sharply clarified view of toxin sequence variation, transit peptide cleavage sites and post-translational modifications (PTMs) likely critical for venom lethality. A tube-gel format for electrophoresis (called GELFrEE) and solution isoelectric focusing were used for protein fractionation prior to LC-MS/MS analysis resulting in 131 protein identifications (18 more than bottom-up) and a total of 184 proteoforms characterized from 14 protein toxin families. Operating both GELFrEE and mass spectrometry to preserve non-covalent interactions generated detailed information about two of the largest venom glycoprotein complexes: the homodimeric l-amino acid oxidase (∼130 kDa) and the multichain toxin cobra venom factor (∼147 kDa). The l-amino acid oxidase complex exhibited two clusters of multiproteoform complexes corresponding to the presence of 5 or 6 N-glycans moieties, each consistent with a distribution of N-acetyl hexosamines. Employing top-down proteomics in both native and denaturing modes provides unprecedented characterization of venom proteoforms and their complexes. A precise molecular inventory of venom proteins will propel the study of snake toxin variation and the targeted development of new antivenoms or other biotherapeutics.

  7. Microplate fluorescence protease assays test the inhibition of select North American snake venoms' activities with an anti-proteinase library.

    PubMed

    Price, Joseph A

    2015-09-01

    Snake envenomation is a relatively neglected significant world health problem, designated an orphan disease by the WHO. While often effective, antivenins are insufficient. Could another approach greatly aid inhibition of the venom toxins? New fluorescent substrates for measuring protease activity in microplate assays suitable for high throughput screening were tested and found reproducible with snake venom. Representative North American venoms showed relatively strong proteinase and collagenase, but weaker elastase activities. Caseinolytic activity is inhibited by the nonspecific proteinase inhibitor 1,10-phenanthroline and by EDTA, as is collagenase activity, consistent with the action of metalloproteinases. Both general protease and collagenase assays CV average 3%, and Km measured were above normal working conditions. Using a library of anti -proteinase compounds with multiple venoms revealed high inhibitor activity by three agents with known multiple metalloproteinase inhibitor activity (Actinonin, GM6001, and NNGH), which incidentally supports the concept that much of the degradative activity of certain venoms is due to metalloproteinases with collagenase activity. These results together support the use of microplate proteinase assays, particularly this collagenase assay, in future drug repurposing studies leading to the development of new treatments for those envenomations that have a major proteolytic component in their pathophysiology.

  8. Extreme diversity of scorpion venom peptides and proteins revealed by transcriptomic analysis: implication for proteome evolution of scorpion venom arsenal.

    PubMed

    Ma, Yibao; He, Yawen; Zhao, Ruiming; Wu, Yingliang; Li, Wenxin; Cao, Zhijian

    2012-02-16

    Venom is an important genetic development crucial to the survival of scorpions for over 400 million years. We studied the evolution of the scorpion venom arsenal by means of comparative transcriptome analysis of venom glands and phylogenetic analysis of shared types of venom peptides and proteins between buthids and euscorpiids. Fifteen types of venom peptides and proteins were sequenced during the venom gland transcriptome analyses of two Buthidae species (Lychas mucronatus and Isometrus maculatus) and one Euscorpiidae species (Scorpiops margerisonae). Great diversity has been observed in translated amino acid sequences of these transcripts for venom peptides and proteins. Seven types of venom peptides and proteins were shared between buthids and euscorpiids. Molecular phylogenetic analysis revealed that at least five of the seven common types of venom peptides and proteins were likely recruited into the scorpion venom proteome before the lineage split between Buthidae and Euscorpiidae with their corresponding genes undergoing individual or multiple gene duplication events. These are α-KTxs, βKSPNs (β-KTxs and scorpines), anionic peptides, La1-like peptides, and SPSVs (serine proteases from scorpion venom). Multiple types of venom peptides and proteins were demonstrated to be continuously recruited into the venom proteome during the evolution process of individual scorpion lineages. Our results provide an insight into the recruitment pattern of the scorpion venom arsenal for the first time.

  9. Amino acid sequence similarity between rabies virus glycoprotein and snake venom curaremimetic neurotoxins.

    PubMed

    Lentz, T L; Wilson, P T; Hawrot, E; Speicher, D W

    1984-11-16

    Evidence was presented earlier that a host-cell receptor for the highly neurotropic rabies virus might be the acetylcholine receptor. The amino acid sequence of the glycoprotein of rabies virus was compared by computer analysis with that of snake venom curaremimetic neurotoxins, potent ligands of the acetylcholine receptor. A statistically significant sequence relation was found between a segment of the rabies glycoprotein and the entire sequence of long neurotoxins. The greatest identity occurs with residues considered most important in neurotoxicity, including those interacting with the acetylcholine binding site of the acetylcholine receptor. Because of the similarity between the glycoprotein and the receptor-binding region of the neurotoxins, this region of the viral glycoprotein may function as a recognition site for the acetylcholine receptor. Direct binding of the rabies virus glycoprotein to the acetylcholine receptor could contribute to the neurotropism of this virus.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

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

  11. Effect of L-amino acid oxidase from Calloselasma rhodosthoma snake venom on human neutrophils.

    PubMed

    Pontes, Adriana S; da S Setúbal, Sulamita; Xavier, Caroline V; Lacouth-Silva, Fabianne; Kayano, Anderson M; Pires, Weverson L; Nery, Neriane Monteiro; Boeri de Castro, Onassis; da Silva, Silvana D; Calderon, Leonardo A; Stábeli, Rodrigo G; Soares, Andreimar M; Zuliani, Juliana P

    2014-03-01

    The in vitro effects of LAAO, an l-amino acid oxidase isolated from Calloselasma rhodosthoma snake venom, on isolated human neutrophil function were investigated. LAAO showed no toxicity on neutrophils. At non-cytotoxic concentrations, LAAO induced the superoxide anion production by isolated human neutrophil. This toxin, in its native form, is also able to stimulate the production of hydrogen peroxide in neutrophils, suggesting that its primary structure is essential for stimulation the cell. Moreover, the incubation of LAAO and phenol red medium did not induce the production of hydrogen peroxide. Furthermore, LAAO was able to stimulate neutrophils to release proinflammatory mediators such as IL-8 and TNF-α as well as NETs liberation. Together, the data showed that the LAAO triggers relevant proinflammatory events. Particular regions of the molecule distinct from the LAAO catalytic site may be involved in the onset of inflammatory events.

  12. Molecular Characterization of Three Novel Phospholipase A2 Proteins from the Venom of Atheris chlorechis, Atheris nitschei and Atheris squamigera

    PubMed Central

    Wang, He; Chen, Xiaole; Zhou, Mei; Wang, Lei; Chen, Tianbao; Shaw, Chris

    2016-01-01

    Secretory phospholipase A2 (sPLA2) is known as a major component of snake venoms and displays higher-order catalytic hydrolysis functions as well as a wide range of pathological effects. Atheris is not a notoriously dangerous genus of snakes although there are some reports of fatal cases after envenomation due to the effects of coagulation disturbances and hemorrhaging. Molecular characterization of Atheris venom enzymes is incomplete and there are only a few reports in the literature. Here, we report, for the first time, the cloning and characterization of three novel cDNAs encoding phospholipase A2 precursors (one each) from the venoms of the Western bush viper (Atheris chlorechis), the Great Lakes bush viper (Atheris nitschei) and the Variable bush viper (Atheris squamigera), using a “shotgun cloning” strategy. Open-reading frames of respective cloned cDNAs contained putative 16 residue signal peptides and mature proteins composed of 121 to 123 amino acid residues. Alignment of mature protein sequences revealed high degrees of structural conservation and identity with Group II venom PLA2 proteins from other taxa within the Viperidae. Reverse-phase High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) profiles of these three snake venoms were obtained separately and chromatographic fractions were assessed for phospholipase activity using an egg yolk suspension assay. The molecular masses of mature proteins were all identified as approximately 14 kDa. Mass spectrometric analyses of the fractionated oligopeptides arising from tryptic digestion of intact venom proteins, was performed for further structural characterization. PMID:27258312

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-07-01

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

  14. Tissue Localization and Extracellular Matrix Degradation by PI, PII and PIII Snake Venom Metalloproteinases: Clues on the Mechanisms of Venom-Induced Hemorrhage

    PubMed Central

    Herrera, Cristina; Escalante, Teresa; Voisin, Mathieu-Benoit; Rucavado, Alexandra; Morazán, Diego; Macêdo, Jéssica Kele A.; Calvete, Juan J.; Sanz, Libia; Nourshargh, Sussan; Gutiérrez, José María; Fox, Jay W.

    2015-01-01

    Snake venom hemorrhagic metalloproteinases (SVMPs) of the PI, PII and PIII classes were compared in terms of tissue localization and their ability to hydrolyze basement membrane components in vivo, as well as by a proteomics analysis of exudates collected in tissue injected with these enzymes. Immunohistochemical analyses of co-localization of these SVMPs with type IV collagen revealed that PII and PIII enzymes co-localized with type IV collagen in capillaries, arterioles and post-capillary venules to a higher extent than PI SVMP, which showed a more widespread distribution in the tissue. The patterns of hydrolysis by these three SVMPs of laminin, type VI collagen and nidogen in vivo greatly differ, whereas the three enzymes showed a similar pattern of degradation of type IV collagen, supporting the concept that hydrolysis of this component is critical for the destabilization of microvessel structure leading to hemorrhage. Proteomic analysis of wound exudate revealed similarities and differences between the action of the three SVMPs. Higher extent of proteolysis was observed for the PI enzyme regarding several extracellular matrix components and fibrinogen, whereas exudates from mice injected with PII and PIII SVMPs had higher amounts of some intracellular proteins. Our results provide novel clues for understanding the mechanisms by which SVMPs induce damage to the microvasculature and generate hemorrhage. PMID:25909592

  15. Lachesis muta (Viperidae) cDNAs Reveal Diverging Pit Viper Molecules and Scaffolds Typical of Cobra (Elapidae) Venoms: Implications for Snake Toxin Repertoire Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio L. M.; Ching, Ana T. C.; Carvalho, Eneas; Faria, Fernanda; Nishiyama, Milton Y.; Ho, Paulo L.; Diniz, Marcelo R. V.

    2006-01-01

    Efforts to describe toxins from the two major families of venomous snakes (Viperidae and Elapidae) usually reveal proteins belonging to few structural types, particular of each family. Here we carried on an effort to determine uncommon cDNAs that represent possible new toxins from Lachesis muta (Viperidae). In addition to nine classes of typical toxins, atypical molecules never observed in the hundreds of Viperidae snakes studied so far are highly expressed: a diverging C-type lectin that is related to Viperidae toxins but appears to be independently originated; an ohanin-like toxin, which would be the third member of the most recently described class of Elapidae toxins, related to human butyrophilin and B30.2 proteins; and a 3FTx-like toxin, a new member of the widely studied three-finger family of proteins, which includes major Elapidae neurotoxins and CD59 antigen. The presence of these common and uncommon molecules suggests that the repertoire of toxins could be more conserved between families than has been considered, and their features indicate a dynamic process of venom evolution through molecular mechanisms, such as multiple recruitments of important scaffolds and domain exchange between paralogs, always keeping a minimalist nature in most toxin structures in opposition to their nontoxin counterparts. PMID:16582429

  16. Lachesis muta (Viperidae) cDNAs reveal diverging pit viper molecules and scaffolds typical of cobra (Elapidae) venoms: implications for snake toxin repertoire evolution.

    PubMed

    Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio L M; Ching, Ana T C; Carvalho, Eneas; Faria, Fernanda; Nishiyama, Milton Y; Ho, Paulo L; Diniz, Marcelo R V

    2006-06-01

    Efforts to describe toxins from the two major families of venomous snakes (Viperidae and Elapidae) usually reveal proteins belonging to few structural types, particular of each family. Here we carried on an effort to determine uncommon cDNAs that represent possible new toxins from Lachesis muta (Viperidae). In addition to nine classes of typical toxins, atypical molecules never observed in the hundreds of Viperidae snakes studied so far are highly expressed: a diverging C-type lectin that is related to Viperidae toxins but appears to be independently originated; an ohanin-like toxin, which would be the third member of the most recently described class of Elapidae toxins, related to human butyrophilin and B30.2 proteins; and a 3FTx-like toxin, a new member of the widely studied three-finger family of proteins, which includes major Elapidae neurotoxins and CD59 antigen. The presence of these common and uncommon molecules suggests that the repertoire of toxins could be more conserved between families than has been considered, and their features indicate a dynamic process of venom evolution through molecular mechanisms, such as multiple recruitments of important scaffolds and domain exchange between paralogs, always keeping a minimalist nature in most toxin structures in opposition to their nontoxin counterparts.

  17. Isolation, characterization, cloning and expression of an alpha-neurotoxin from the venom of the Mexican coral snake Micrurus laticollaris (Squamata: Elapidae).

    PubMed

    Carbajal-Saucedo, Alejandro; López-Vera, Estuardo; Bénard-Valle, Melisa; Smith, Eric N; Zamudio, Fernando; de Roodt, Adolfo R; Olvera-Rodríguez, Alejandro

    2013-05-01

    A new member of short chain α-neurotoxic protein family from venom of the Mexican coral snake, Micrurus laticollaris, was characterized. This protein, named MlatA1, possesses 61 amino acids with 8 conserved cysteine residues, sharing 30-91% sequence identity with other fully sequenced Micrurus toxins. MlatA1 (LD50i.v. = 0.064 mg/kg) antagonizes with both fetal and adult nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) as well as α-7 neuronal nAChR in a dose-dependent way. Specific rabbit anti-Mlat serum (titer higher than 18,000) does not show any protective ability against this toxin, nevertheless it was able to recognize protein bands in six out of twelve Micrurus venoms showing the existence of two distinct antigenic groups for α-neurotoxins in North American coral snakes species. The MlatA1 gene was cloned and used to produce recombinant toxin (rMlatA1) that was recognized by rabbit anti-native toxin but was depleted of toxic activity.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  19. Three-fingered RAVERs: Rapid Accumulation of Variations in Exposed Residues of snake venom toxins.

    PubMed

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

    2013-11-18

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

  20. Influence of phospholipasic inhibition on neuromuscular activity of Bothrops fonsecai snake venom.

    PubMed

    Schezaro-Ramos, Raphael; Collaço, Rita de Cássia O; Randazzo-Moura, Priscila; Rocha, Thalita; Cogo, José Carlos; Rodrigues-Simioni, Léa

    2017-05-01

    Bothrops fonsecai (B. fonsecai), a pitviper endemic to southeastern Brazil, has a venom mainly composed by snake venom phospholipases (PLA2) and metalloproteases, compounds that could interfere with neuromuscular junction in vitro. In this work, we investigated the role of PLA2 in the myotoxicity and neuromuscular blockade caused by B. fonsecai venom using different procedures frequently associated with PLA2 activity inhibition: 24 °C bath temperature, Ca(2+) - Sr(2+) replacement and chemical modification with p-bromophenacyl bromide (p-BPB). Mice extensor digitorum longus preparations (EDL) were incubated with usual or modified Tyrode solution (prepared with Ca(2+) or Sr(2+) respectively) at 24 °C or 37 °C (as controls) and in addition of B. fonsecai venom (100 μg/mL) alone or after its incubation with buffer (24 h, 23 °C) on the absence (alkylation control) and presence of p-BPB; all muscle were processed for histological analysis. The PLA2, proteolytic and amidolytic activities under the same conditions (24 °C or 37 °C, Ca(2+) - Sr(2+) replacement, absence or presence p-BPB) were also assessed. The B. fonsecai venom caused total neuromuscular blockade after 100 min of incubation, in Ca(2+) Tyrode solution at 37 °C (usual conditions); on Sr(2+) Tyrode solution (37 °C) the twitch height were 31.7 ± 7.4% of basal, and at 24 °C (Ca(2+) Tyrode solution) were 53.6 ± 7.0% of basal. The alkylation of PLA2 with p-BPB promoted a great blockade decrease at 100 min of incubation (88.7 ± 5.7% of basal), but it was also observed on alkylation control preparations (66.2 ± 6.6%). The venom produced 50% of blockade at 40.5 ± 5.9 min, in Ca(2+) Tyrode solution at 37 °C. The protocols delayed the time for 50% blockade: 105.7 ± 7.1 min (at 24 °C, in Ca(2+) Tyrode solution) and 71.1 ± 9.0 min (at 37 °C, in Sr(2+) Tyrode solution). Regarding p-BPB incubation and alkylation control preparations, 50% of blockade was not reached

  1. Group D prothrombin activators from snake venom are structural homologues of mammalian blood coagulation factor Xa.

    PubMed Central

    Rao, Veena S; Joseph, Jeremiah S; Kini, R Manjunatha

    2003-01-01

    Procoagulant venoms of several Australian elapids contain proteinases that specifically activate prothrombin; among these, Group D activators are functionally similar to coagulation factor Xa (FXa). Structural information on this class of prothrombin activators will contribute significantly towards understanding the mechanism of FXa-mediated prothrombin activation. Here we present the purification of Group D prothrombin activators from three Australian snake venoms (Hoplocephalus stephensi, Notechis scutatus scutatus and Notechis ater niger) using a single-step method, and their N-terminal sequences. The N-terminal sequence of the heavy chain of hopsarin D (H. stephensi) revealed that a fully conserved Cys-7 was substituted with a Ser residue. We therefore determined the complete amino acid sequence of hopsarin D. Hopsarin D shows approximately 70% similarity with FXa and approximately 98% similarity with trocarin D, a Group D prothrombin activator from Tropidechis carinatus. It possesses the characteristic Gla domain, two epidermal growth factor-like domains and a serine proteinase domain. All residues important for catalysis are conserved, as are most regions involved in interactions with factor Va and prothrombin. However, there are some structural differences. Unlike FXa, hopsarin D is glycosylated in both its chains: in light-chain residue 52 and heavy-chain residue 45. The glycosylation on the heavy chain is a large carbohydrate moiety adjacent to the active-site pocket. Overall, hopsarin D is structurally and functionally similar to mammalian coagulation FXa. PMID:12403650

  2. Pharmacological analysis of hemodynamic responses to Lachesis muta (South American bushmaster) snake venom in anesthetized rats.

    PubMed

    Dias, Lourdes; Rodrigues, Mariana A P; Inoue, Bruna R; Rodrigues, Renata L; Rennó, André L; de Souza, Valéria B; Torres-Huaco, Frank D; Sousa, Norma C; Stroka, Alessandra; Melgarejo, Anibal R; Hyslop, Stephen

    2016-12-01

    In this work, we examined some mechanisms involved in the hypotension caused by Lachesis muta (South American bushmaster) venom in anesthetized rats. Venom (1.5 mg/kg, i.v.) caused immediate hypotension that was maximal after 5 min and gradually returned to baseline over 60 min. Pretreatment of rats with the non-selective nitric oxide synthase (NOS) inhibitor N(ω)-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester (L-NAME) did not attenuate the early phase of venom-induced hypotension, but abolished the recovery phase and resulted in rapid death; a similar effect was observed with the soluble guanylate cyclase (sGC) inhibitor ODQ. In contrast, the hemodynamic responses to venom were not attenuated by the non-selective NOS inhibitor N(G)-monomethyl-L-arginine, the inducible NOS inhibitor aminoguanidine, the phosphodiesterase 5 inhibitor sildenafil, the adenylate cyclase (AC) inhibitor SQ-22.536, the non-selective muscarinic receptor antagonist atropine, the bradykinin B2 receptor antagonist HOE-140 and the non-selective cyclooxygenase inhibitor indomethacin. Preincubation of venom with the PLA2 inhibitor pBPB had no effect on the immediate hypotension but tended to improve the recovery phase. Neither AEBSF (a serine proteinase inhibitor) nor EDTA (a metalloproteinase inhibitor) prevented the venom-induced hypotension, but AEBSF and not EDTA protected against the lethality of a high dose (3.0 mg/kg, i.v.). There were no marked changes in the ECG parameters with the various treatments, except with L-NAME and ODQ that increased the RR interval. Pulmonary thrombus formation was markedly enhanced by L-NAME and ODQ, and to a lesser extent by pBPB, especially in small vessels, whereas AEBSF and EDTA inhibited thrombus formation. Venom relaxed phenylephrine-precontracted thoracic aorta and pulmonary artery in vitro, with the latter being more sensitive. The relaxation was endothelium-dependent and was inhibited by ODQ but not by H-89, a protein kinase A (PKA) inhibitor. Together, these

  3. Identification of a locality in snake venom alpha-neurotoxins with a significant compositional similarity to marine snail alpha-conotoxins: implications for evolution and structure/activity.

    PubMed

    Dufton, M J; Bladon, P; Harvey, A L

    1989-10-01

    alpha-neurotoxins from elapid snake venoms and alpha-conotoxins from marine snails bind specifically and with high affinity to nicotinic cholinoceptors. Although both types of toxin are polypeptides, there is more than a fourfold difference in size between the two and no clear sequence homology is evident. A systematic computer search of the three-dimensional structure of erabutoxin b (an alpha-neurotoxin from the false sea snake Laticauda semifasciata) was performed to identify the locality that most closely matched the amino acid compositions of the smaller alpha-conotoxins (from the marine snails Conus magus and Conus geographus). The area of greatest similarity centered on residue position 25 of erabutoxin b, a locale that is conserved throughout the snake alpha-neurotoxins and their homologues. Six proteins unrelated to erabutoxin b were compared to the alpha-conotoxins to show that the extent of the erabutoxin b/alpha-conotoxin match was too high to be coincidental. Homologues of erabutoxin b, namely alpha-cobratoxin from Naja naja siamensis and cytotoxin VII4 from Naja mossambica mossambica, were also analyzed. The extent of the matching with the alpha-conotoxins decreased in the series erabutoxin b greater than alpha-cobratoxin greater than cytotoxin VII4, and this also relates the order of similarity to the pharmacological properties of the alpha-conotoxins. The alpha-conotoxin-like area of the snake alpha-neurotoxins is peripheral to the site previously considered important for binding to the cholinoceptor, even though it seems to represent the focus of evolutionary convergence between the two types of neurotoxin. The area of resemblance does, however, have strong associations with the conformational behavior of the snake toxins. Hence, the outcome of this study has important consequences for the current ideas on snake alpha-neurotoxin structure/activity relationships and the evolutionary origins of neurotoxicity.

  4. Snake venom toxins. The amino acid sequence of toxin Vi2, a homologue of pancreatic trypsin inhibitor, from Dendroaspis polylepis polylepis (black mamba) venom.

    PubMed

    Strydom, D J

    1977-04-25

    The amino acid sequence of venom component Vi2, a protein of low toxicity from Dendroaspis polylepis polylepis venom was determined by automatic sequence analysis in combination with sequence studies on tryptic peptides. This protein, the most retarded fraction of this venom on a cation-exchange resin, is a homologue of bovine pancreatic trypsin inhibitor consisting of a single chain of 57 amino acid residues containing six half-cystine residues. The active site lysyl residue of bovine trypsin inhibitor is conserved in Vi2 although large differences are found in the rest of the molecule.

  5. The effects of protease inhibitor homologues from mamba snake venoms on autonomic neurotransmission.

    PubMed

    Anderson, A J

    1985-01-01

    Five protease inhibitor homologues isolated from mamba venoms were tested for facilitatory actions on autonomic neurotransmission using isolated smooth muscle preparations. Dendrotoxin from the eastern green mamba (Dendroaspis angusticeps) was the most consistent in augmenting the responses to sympathetic stimulation in vas deferens preparations and to parasympathetic stimulation in chick oesophagus preparations. Toxin I from the black mamba (D. polylepis) venom augmented the neurally evoked responses in vas deferens preparations, and toxin K from the same venom augmented neurally evoked responses in chick oesophagus preparations. Proteins B and E from D. polylepis venom, as well as bovine pancreas trypsin inhibitor, had no significant facilitatory action on either smooth muscle preparation. The mechanism of the augmentation of neurally evoked responses produced by toxin I on vas deferens preparations, and dendrotoxin on chick oesophagus preparations, was investigated using a variety of drugs which interfere with cholinergic and adrenergic transmission. It is concluded that dendrotoxin and toxin I increase evoked transmitter release in the autonomic nervous system by a direct action on nerves.

  6. Purification and characterization of BmooAi: a new toxin from Bothrops moojeni snake venom that inhibits platelet aggregation.

    PubMed

    de Queiroz, Mayara Ribeiro; Mamede, Carla Cristine N; de Morais, Nadia Cristina G; Fonseca, Kelly Cortes; de Sousa, Bruna Barbosa; Migliorini, Thaís M; Pereira, Déborah Fernanda C; Stanziola, Leonilda; Calderon, Leonardo A; Simões-Silva, Rodrigo; Soares, Andreimar Martins; de Oliveira, Fábio

    2014-01-01

    In this paper, we describe the purification/characterization of BmooAi, a new toxin from Bothrops moojeni that inhibits platelet aggregation. The purification of BmooAi was carried out through three chromatographic steps (ion-exchange on a DEAE-Sephacel column, molecular exclusion on a Sephadex G-75 column, and reverse-phase HPLC chromatography on a C2/C18 column). BmooAi was homogeneous by SDS-PAGE and shown to be a single-chain protein of 15,000 Da. BmooAi was analysed by MALDI-TOF Spectrometry and revealed two major components with molecular masses 7824.4 and 7409.2 as well as a trace of protein with a molecular mass of 15,237.4 Da. Sequencing of BmooAi by Edman degradation showed two amino acid sequences: IRDFDPLTNAPENTA and ETEEGAEEGTQ, which revealed no homology to any known toxin from snake venom. BmooAi showed a rather specific inhibitory effect on platelet aggregation induced by collagen, adenosine diphosphate, or epinephrine in human platelet-rich plasma in a dose-dependent manner, whereas it had little or no effect on platelet aggregation induced by ristocetin. The effect on platelet aggregation induced by BmooAi remained active even when heated to 100°C. BmooAi could be of medical interest as a new tool for the development of novel therapeutic agents for the prevention and treatment of thrombotic disorders.

  7. Purification and Characterization of BmooAi: A New Toxin from Bothrops moojeni Snake Venom That Inhibits Platelet Aggregation

    PubMed Central

    Ribeiro de Queiroz, Mayara; Mamede, Carla Cristine N.; de Morais, Nadia Cristina G.; Cortes Fonseca, Kelly; Barbosa de Sousa, Bruna; Migliorini, Thaís M.; Pereira, Déborah Fernanda C.; Stanziola, Leonilda; Calderon, Leonardo A.; Simões-Silva, Rodrigo; Martins Soares, Andreimar; de Oliveira, Fábio

    2014-01-01

    In this paper, we describe the purification/characterization of BmooAi, a new toxin from Bothrops moojeni that inhibits platelet aggregation. The purification of BmooAi was carried out through three chromatographic steps (ion-exchange on a DEAE-Sephacel column, molecular exclusion on a Sephadex G-75 column, and reverse-phase HPLC chromatography on a C2/C18 column). BmooAi was homogeneous by SDS-PAGE and shown to be a single-chain protein of 15,000 Da. BmooAi was analysed by MALDI-TOF Spectrometry and revealed two major components with molecular masses 7824.4 and 7409.2 as well as a trace of protein with a molecular mass of 15,237.4 Da. Sequencing of BmooAi by Edman degradation showed two amino acid sequences: IRDFDPLTNAPENTA and ETEEGAEEGTQ, which revealed no homology to any known toxin from snake venom. BmooAi showed a rather specific inhibitory effect on platelet aggregation induced by collagen, adenosine diphosphate, or epinephrine in human platelet-rich plasma in a dose-dependent manner, whereas it had little or no effect on platelet aggregation induced by ristocetin. The effect on platelet aggregation induced by BmooAi remained active even when heated to 100°C. BmooAi could be of medical interest as a new tool for the development of novel therapeutic agents for the prevention and treatment of thrombotic disorders. PMID:24971359

  8. Anti-cancer effect of snake venom toxin through down regulation of AP-1 mediated PRDX6 expression.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hye Lim; Park, Mi Hee; Son, Dong Ju; Song, Ho Sueb; Kim, Jung Hyun; Ko, Seong Cheol; Song, Min Jong; Lee, Won Hyoung; Yoon, Joo Hee; Ham, Young Wan; Han, Sang Bae; Hong, Jin Tae

    2015-09-08

    Snake venom toxin (SVT) from Vipera lebetina turanica contains a mixture of different enzymes and proteins. Peroxiredoxin 6 (PRDX6) is known to be a stimulator of lung cancer cell growth. PRDX6 is a member of peroxidases, and has calcium-independent phospholipase A2 (iPLA2) activities. PRDX6 has an AP-1 binding site in its promoter region of the gene. Since AP-1 is implicated in tumor growth and PRDX6 expression, in the present study, we investigated whether SVT inhibits PRDX6, thereby preventing human lung cancer cell growth (A549 and NCI-H460) through inactivation of AP-1. A docking model study and pull down assay showed that SVT completely fits on the basic leucine zipper (bZIP) region of c-Fos of AP-1. SVT (0-10 μg/ml) inhibited lung cancer cell growth in a concentration dependent manner through induction of apoptotic cell death accompanied by induction of cleaved caspase-3, -8, -9, Bax, p21 and p53, but decreased cIAP and Bcl2 expression via inactivation of AP-1. In an xenograft in vivo model, SVT (0.5 mg/kg and 1 mg/kg) also inhibited tumor growth accompanied with the reduction of PRDX6 expression, but increased expression of proapoptotic proteins. These data indicate that SVT inhibits tumor growth via inhibition of PRDX6 activity through interaction with its transcription factor AP-1.

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

    PubMed

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

    2006-06-01

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

  10. Structures of pseudechetoxin and pseudecin, two snake-venom cysteine-rich secretory proteins that target cyclic nucleotide-gated ion channels: implications for movement of the C-terminal cysteine-rich domain

    SciTech Connect

    Suzuki, Nobuhiro; Yamazaki, Yasuo; Brown, R. Lane; Fujimoto, Zui; Morita, Takashi; Mizuno, Hiroshi

    2008-10-01

    The structures of pseudechetoxin and pseudecin suggest that both proteins bind to cyclic nucleotide-gated ion channels in a manner in which the concave surface occludes the pore entrance. Cyclic nucleotide-gated (CNG) ion channels play pivotal roles in sensory transduction by retinal photoreceptors and olfactory neurons. The elapid snake toxins pseudechetoxin (PsTx) and pseudecin (Pdc) are the only known protein blockers of CNG channels. These toxins belong to a cysteine-rich secretory protein (CRISP) family containing an N-terminal pathogenesis-related proteins of group 1 (PR-1) domain and a C-terminal cysteine-rich domain (CRD). PsTx and Pdc are highly homologous proteins, but their blocking affinities on CNG channels are different: PsTx blocks both the olfactory and retinal channels with ∼15–30-fold higher affinity than Pdc. To gain further insights into their structure and function, the crystal structures of PsTx, Pdc and Zn{sup 2+}-bound Pdc were determined. The structures revealed that most of the amino-acid-residue differences between PsTx and Pdc are located around the concave surface formed between the PR-1 domain and the CRD, suggesting that the concave surface is functionally important for CNG-channel binding and inhibition. A structural comparison in the presence and absence of Zn{sup 2+} ion demonstrated that the concave surface can open and close owing to movement of the CRD upon Zn{sup 2+} binding. The data suggest that PsTx and Pdc occlude the pore entrance and that the dynamic motion of the concave surface facilitates interaction with the CNG channels.

  11. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray diffraction analyses of pseudechetoxin and pseudecin, two snake-venom cysteine-rich secretory proteins that target cyclic nucleotide-gated ion channels

    SciTech Connect

    Suzuki, Nobuhiro; Yamazaki, Yasuo; Fujimoto, Zui; Morita, Takashi; Mizuno, Hiroshi

    2005-08-01

    Crystals of pseudechetoxin and pseudecin, potent peptidic inhibitors of cyclic nucleotide-gated ion channels, have been prepared and X-ray diffraction data have been collected to 2.25 and 1.90 Å resolution, respectively. Cyclic nucleotide-gated (CNG) ion channels play pivotal roles in sensory transduction of retinal and olfactory neurons. The elapid snake toxins pseudechetoxin (PsTx) and pseudecin (Pdc) are the only known protein blockers of CNG channels. These toxins are structurally classified as cysteine-rich secretory proteins and exhibit structural features that are quite distinct from those of other known small peptidic channel blockers. This article describes the crystallization and preliminary X-ray diffraction analyses of these toxins. Crystals of PsTx belonged to space group P2{sub 1}2{sub 1}2{sub 1}, with unit-cell parameters a = 60.30, b = 61.59, c = 251.69 Å, and diffraction data were collected to 2.25 Å resolution. Crystals of Pdc also belonged to space group P2{sub 1}2{sub 1}2{sub 1}, with similar unit-cell parameters a = 60.71, b = 61.67, c = 251.22 Å, and diffraction data were collected to 1.90 Å resolution.

  12. Neuroprotective property of low molecular weight fraction from B. jararaca snake venom in H2O2-induced cytotoxicity in cultured hippocampal cells.

    PubMed

    Querobino, Samyr Machado; Carrettiero, Daniel Carneiro; Costa, Maricilia Silva; Alberto-Silva, Carlos

    2017-04-01

    In central nervous system cells, low molecular weight fractions (LMWF) from snake venoms can inhibit changes in mitochondrial membrane permeability, preventing the diffusion of cytochrome c to the cytoplasm, inhibiting the activation of pro-apoptotic factors. Here, we evaluated the neuroprotective activity of LMWF from Bothrops jararaca (Bj) snake venom in H2O2-induced cytotoxicity in cultured hippocampal cells. SDS-PAGE, FT-IR and MALDI-TOF analysis of LMWF (<14 kDa) confirmed the absence of high-molecular-weight proteins in the fraction. LMWF did not present cytotoxicity in all concentrations and time tested by MTT assay. Neuroprotection was evaluated in cells pretreated with LMWF for 4 h prior to the addition of 50 μM H2O2 for 20 h. We demonstrated that LMWF reduced the argininosuccinate synthase (AsS) and superoxide dismutase (SOD1) expressions, suggesting that this fraction as an effective neuroprotective compound that could increase the hippocampal cells viability by attenuation of oxidative stress. In addition, LMWF protects against apoptosis induced by H2O2, reducing the expression of caspase-3 and caspase-8. Overall, this study opens new perspectives for the identification of new molecules for the development of drugs applied to the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

  13. A Comprehensive View of the Structural and Functional Alterations of Extracellular Matrix by Snake Venom Metalloproteinases (SVMPs): Novel Perspectives on the Pathophysiology of Envenoming

    PubMed Central

    Gutiérrez, José María; Escalante, Teresa; Rucavado, Alexandra; Herrera, Cristina; Fox, Jay W.

    2016-01-01

    Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) affect the extracellular matrix (ECM) in multiple and complex ways. Previously, the combination of various methodological platforms, including electron microscopy, histochemistry, immunohistochemistry, and Western blot, has allowed a partial understanding of such complex pathology. In recent years, the proteomics analysis of exudates collected in the vicinity of tissues affected by SVMPs has provided novel and exciting information on SVMP-induced ECM alterations. The presence of fragments of an array of ECM proteins, including those of the basement membrane, has revealed a complex pathological scenario caused by the direct action of SVMPs. In addition, the time-course analysis of these changes has underscored that degradation of some fibrillar collagens is likely to depend on the action of endogenous proteinases, such as matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), synthesized as a consequence of the inflammatory process. The action of SVMPs on the ECM also results in the release of ECM-derived biologically-active peptides that exert diverse actions in the tissue, some of which might be associated with reparative events or with further tissue damage. The study of the effects of SVMP on the ECM is an open field of research which may bring a renewed understanding of snake venom-induced pathology. PMID:27782073

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  16. Characterization of a human coagulation factor Xa-binding site on Viperidae snake venom phospholipases A2 by affinity binding studies and molecular bioinformatics

    PubMed Central

    Faure, Grazyna; Gowda, Veerabasappa T; Maroun, Rachid C

    2007-01-01

    Background The snake venom group IIA secreted phospholipases A2 (SVPLA2), present in the Viperidae snake family exhibit a wide range of toxic and pharmacological effects. They exert their different functions by catalyzing the hydrolysis of phospholipids (PL) at the membrane/water interface and by highly specific direct binding to: (i) presynaptic membrane-bound or intracellular receptors; (ii) natural PLA2-inhibitors from snake serum; and (iii) coagulation factors present in human blood. Results Using surface plasmon resonance (SPR) protein-protein interaction measurements and an in vitro biological test of inhibition of prothrombinase activity, we identify a number of Viperidae venom SVPLA2s that inhibit blood coagulation through direct binding to human blood coagulation factor Xa (FXa) via a non-catalytic, PL-independent mechanism. We classify the SVPLA2s in four groups, depending on the strength of their binding. Molecular electrostatic potentials calculated at the surface of 3D homology-modeling models show a correlation with inhibition of prothrombinase activity. In addition, molecular docking simulations between SVPLA2 and FXa guided by the experimental data identify the potential FXa binding site on the SVPLA2s. This site is composed of the following regions: helices A and B, the Ca2+ loop, the helix C-β-wing loop, and the C-terminal fragment. Some of the SVPLA2 binding site residues belong also to the interfacial binding site (IBS). The interface in FXa involves both, the light and heavy chains. Conclusion We have experimentally identified several strong FXa-binding SVPLA2s that disrupt the function of the coagulation cascade by interacting with FXa by the non-catalytic PL-independent mechanism. By theoretical methods we mapped the interaction sites on both, the SVPLA2s and FXa. Our findings may lead to the design of novel, non-competitive FXa inhibitors. PMID:18062812

  17. Chemical Modifications of PhTX-I Myotoxin from Porthidium hyoprora Snake Venom: Effects on Structural, Enzymatic, and Pharmacological Properties

    PubMed Central

    Huancahuire-Vega, Salomón; Corrêa, Daniel H. A.; Hollanda, Luciana M.; Lancellotti, Marcelo; Ramos, Carlos H. I.; Ponce-Soto, Luis Alberto; Marangoni, Sergio

    2013-01-01

    We recently described the isolation of a basic PLA2 (PhTX-I) from Porthidium hyoprora snake venom. This toxin exhibits high catalytic activity, induces in vivo myotoxicity, moderates footpad edema, and causes in vitro neuromuscular blockade. Here, we describe the chemical modifications of specific amino acid residues (His, Tyr, Lys, and Trp), performed in PhTX-I, to study their effects on the structural, enzymatic, and pharmacological properties of this myotoxin. After chemical treatment, a single His, 4 Tyr, 7 Lys, and one Trp residues were modified. The secondary structure of the protein remained unchanged as measured by circular dichroism; however other results indicated the critical role played by Lys and Tyr residues in myotoxic, neurotoxic activities and mainly in the cytotoxicity displayed by PhTX-I. His residue and therefore catalytic activity of PhTX-I are relevant for edematogenic, neurotoxic, and myotoxic effects, but not for its cytotoxic activity. This dissociation observed between enzymatic activity and some pharmacological effects suggests that other molecular regions distinct from the catalytic site may also play a role in the toxic activities exerted by this myotoxin. Our observations supported the hypothesis that both the catalytic sites as the hypothetical pharmacological sites are relevant to the pharmacological profile of PhTX-I. PMID:23484072

  18. Consuming viscous prey: a novel protein-secreting delivery system in neotropical snail-eating snakes

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Efficient venom delivery systems are known to occur only in varanoid lizards and advanced colubroidean snakes among squamate reptiles. Although components of these venomous systems might have been present in a common ancestor, the two lineages independently evolved strikingly different venom gland systems. In snakes, venom is produced exclusively by serous glands in the upper jaw. Within the colubroidean radiation, lower jaw seromucous infralabial glands are known only in two distinct lineages–the basal pareatids and the more advanced Neotropical dipsadines known as “goo-eating snakes”. Goo-eaters are a highly diversified, ecologically specialized clade that feeds exclusively on invertebrates (e.g., gastropod molluscs and annelids). Their evolutionary success has been attributed to their peculiar feeding strategies, which remain surprisingly poorly understood. More specifically, it has long been thought that the more derived Dipsadini genera Dipsas and Sibynomorphus use glandular toxins secreted by their infralabial glands to extract snails from their shells. Results Here, we report the presence in the tribe Dipsadini of a novel lower jaw protein-secreting delivery system effected by a gland that is not functionally related to adjacent teeth, but rather opens loosely on the oral epithelium near the tip of the mandible, suggesting that its secretion is not injected into the prey as a form of envenomation but rather helps control the mucus and assists in the ingestion of their highly viscous preys. A similar protein-secreting system is also present in the goo-eating genus Geophis and may share the same adaptive purpose as that hypothesized for Dipsadini. Our phylogenetic hypothesis suggests that the acquisition of a seromucous infralabial gland represents a uniquely derived trait of the goo-eating clade that evolved independently twice within the group as a functionally complex protein-secreting delivery system. Conclusions The acquisition by snail

  19. Snake venomics of Crotalus tigris: the minimalist toxin arsenal of the deadliest Nearctic rattlesnake venom. Evolutionary Clues for generating a pan-specific antivenom against crotalid type II venoms [corrected].

    PubMed

    Calvete, Juan J; Pérez, Alicia; Lomonte, Bruno; Sánchez, Elda E; Sanz, Libia

    2012-02-03

    We report the proteomic and antivenomic characterization of Crotalus tigris venom. This venom exhibits the highest lethality for mice among rattlesnakes and the simplest toxin proteome reported to date. The venom proteome of C. tigris comprises 7-8 gene products from 6 toxin families; the presynaptic β-neurotoxic heterodimeric PLA(2), Mojave toxin, and two serine proteinases comprise, respectively, 66 and 27% of the C. tigris toxin arsenal, whereas a VEGF-like protein, a CRISP molecule, a medium-sized disintegrin, and 1-2 PIII-SVMPs each represent 0.1-5% of the total venom proteome. This toxin profile really explains the systemic neuro- and myotoxic effects observed in envenomated animals. In addition, we found that venom lethality of C. tigris and other North American rattlesnake type II venoms correlates with the concentration of Mojave toxin A-subunit, supporting the view that the neurotoxic venom phenotype of crotalid type II venoms may be described as a single-allele adaptation. Our data suggest that the evolutionary trend toward neurotoxicity, which has been also reported for the South American rattlesnakes, may have resulted by pedomorphism. The ability of an experimental antivenom to effectively immunodeplete proteins from the type II venoms of C. tigris, Crotalus horridus , Crotalus oreganus helleri, Crotalus scutulatus scutulatus, and Sistrurus catenatus catenatus indicated the feasibility of generating a pan-American anti-Crotalus type II antivenom, suggested by the identification of shared evolutionary trends among South and North American Crotalus species.

  20. Snake venomics and antivenomics of Bothrops atrox venoms from Colombia and the Amazon regions of Brazil, Perú and Ecuador suggest the occurrence of geographic variation of venom phenotype by a trend towards paedomorphism.

    PubMed

    Núñez, Vitelbina; Cid, Pedro; Sanz, Libia; De La Torre, Pilar; Angulo, Yamileth; Lomonte, Bruno; Gutiérrez, José María; Calvete, Juan J

    2009-11-02

    The venom proteomes of Bothrops atrox from Colombia, Brazil, Ecuador, and Perú were characterized using venomic and antivenomic strategies. Our results evidence the existence of two geographically differentiated venom phenotypes. The venom from Colombia comprises at least 26 different proteins belonging to 9 different groups of toxins. PI-metalloproteinases and K49-PLA(2) molecules represent the most abundant toxins. On the other hand, the venoms from Brazilian, Ecuadorian, and Peruvian B. atrox contain predominantly PIII-metalloproteinases. These toxin profiles correlate with the venom phenotypes of adult and juvenile B. asper from Costa Rica, respectively, suggesting that paedomorphism represented a selective trend during the trans-Amazonian southward expansion of B. atrox through the Andean Corridor. The high degree of crossreactivity of a Costa Rican polyvalent (Bothrops asper, Lachesis stenophrys, Crotalus simus) antivenom against B. atrox venoms further evidenced the close evolutionary kinship between B. asper and B. atrox. This antivenom was more efficient immunodepleting proteins from the venoms of B. atrox from Brazil, Ecuador, and Perú than from Colombia. Such behaviour may be rationalized taking into account the lower content of poorly immunogenic toxins, such as PLA(2) molecules and PI-SVMPs in the paedomorphic venoms. The immunological profile of the Costa Rican antivenom strongly suggests the possibility of using this antivenom for the management of snakebites by B. atrox in Colombia and the Amazon regions of Ecuador, Perú and Brazil.

  1. Chironex fleckeri (Box Jellyfish) Venom Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Brinkman, Diane L.; Konstantakopoulos, Nicki; McInerney, Bernie V.; Mulvenna, Jason; Seymour, Jamie E.; Isbister, Geoffrey K.; Hodgson, Wayne C.

    2014-01-01

    The box jellyfish Chironex fleckeri produces extremely potent and rapid-acting venom that is harmful to humans and lethal to prey. Here, we describe the characterization of two C. fleckeri venom proteins, CfTX-A (∼40 kDa) and CfTX-B (∼42 kDa), which were isolated from C. fleckeri venom using size exclusion chromatography and cation exchange chromatography. Full-length cDNA sequences encoding CfTX-A and -B and a third putative toxin, CfTX-Bt, were subsequently retrieved from a C. fleckeri tentacle cDNA library. Bioinformatic analyses revealed that the new toxins belong to a small family of potent cnidarian pore-forming toxins that includes two other C. fleckeri toxins, CfTX-1 and CfTX-2. Phylogenetic inferences from amino acid sequences of the toxin family grouped CfTX-A, -B, and -Bt in a separate clade from CfTX-1 and -2, suggesting that the C. fleckeri toxins have diversified structurally and functionally during evolution. Comparative bioactivity assays revealed that CfTX-1/2 (25 μg kg−1) caused profound effects on the cardiovascular system of anesthetized rats, whereas CfTX-A/B elicited only minor effects at the same dose. Conversely, the hemolytic activity of CfTX-A/B (HU50 = 5 ng ml−1) was at least 30 times greater than that of CfTX-1/2. Structural homology between the cubozoan toxins and insecticidal three-domain Cry toxins (δ-endotoxins) suggests that the toxins have a similar pore-forming mechanism of action involving α-helices of the N-terminal domain, whereas structural diversification among toxin members may modulate target specificity. Expansion of the cnidarian toxin family therefore provides new insights into the evolutionary diversification of box jellyfish toxins from a structural and functional perspective. PMID:24403082

  2. Viperatoxin-II: A novel viper venom protein as an effective bactericidal agent.

    PubMed

    Samy, Ramar Perumal; Stiles, Bradley G; Chinnathambi, Arunachalam; Zayed, M E; Alharbi, Sulaiman Ali; Franco, Octavio Luiz; Rowan, Edward G; Kumar, Alan Prem; Lim, Lina H K; Sethi, Gautam

    2015-01-01

    Infections caused by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) have become a rising threat to public health. There is an urgent need for development of promising new therapeutic agents against drug resistant bacteria like S. aureus. This report discusses purification and characterization of proteins from Indian Russell's viper snake venom. Novel 15-kDa proteins called "Viperatoxin" (VipTx-I and VipTx-II) were extracted from the whole venom and evaluated using in vitro antimicrobial experiments. The N-terminal amino acid sequence of "Viperatoxin" showed high sequence homology to daboiatoxin isolated from the same venom and also matched phospholipase A2 (PLA2) enzymes isolated from other snake venoms. In an in vitro plate assay, VipTx-II but not VipTx-I showed strong antimicrobial effects against S. aureus and Burkholderia pseudomallei (KHW & TES), Proteus vulgaris and P. mirabilis. The VipTx-II was further tested by a broth-dilution assay at 100-3.1 μg/ml concentrations. The most potent bactericidal effect was found at the lowest dilutions (MICs of 6.25 μg/ml) against B. pseudomallei, S. aureus and P. vulgaris (MICs of 12.25 μg/ml). Electron microscopic investigation revealed that the protein-induced bactericidal potency was closely associated with pore formation and membrane damage, even at the lowest concentrations (<20 μg/ml). The toxin caused a low level of cytotoxic effects as observed in human (THP-1) cells at higher concentrations. Molecular weight determinations of VipTx-II by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis showed one major, along with a few minor bands. The results indicate that VipTx-II plays a significant role in bactericidal and membrane damaging effects in vitro. Non-cytotoxic properties on human cells highlight it as a promising candidate for further evaluation of antimicrobial potential in vivo.

  3. Bites by Russell's vipers (Daboia russelii siamensis) in Myanmar: effect of the snake's length and recent feeding on venom antigenaemia and severity of envenoming.

    PubMed

    Tun-Pe; Ba-Aye; Aye-Aye-Myint; Tin-Nu-Swe; Warrell, D A

    1991-01-01

    An improved enzyme immunoassay technique (EIA) was used in the diagnosis of 311 suspected Russell's viper bite cases in Myanmar [Burma], 181 of whom (58%) had systemic envenoming. Russell's viper venom was detected in the sera of 175 (56.3%), cobra or green pit viper venoms in 4 (1.3%), and no venom in the remaining 132 (42.4). Among 175 of these patients who failed to bring the dead snake, EIA achieved a specific diagnosis of Russell's viper envenoming in 101 (58%). The serum venom antigen concentration was higher in patients with systemic envenoming than in those with local or no envenoming and it increased with the development of coagulopathy. Stomach contents were examined in 101 Russell's vipers responsible for bites. The presence of prey, usually a rodent, in the snake's stomach, indicating that it had eaten recently, did not influence the severity of envenoming, the initial venom level, or the percentage circumference increase and the extent of local swelling in the bitten limb. One hundred and fifty-five Russell's vipers responsible for bites showed a bimodal distribution of total lengths. The smaller snakes had probably been born that year. Longer snakes were responsible for more severe envenoming, a shorter interval between the bite and the detection of incoagulable blood, and more extensive local swelling with a greater percentage circumference increase of the bitten limb; but their bites were not associated with higher initial venom antigenaemia or a greater risk of developing acute renal failure.

  4. Snake venomics of the Central American rattlesnake Crotalus simus and the South American Crotalus durissus complex points to neurotoxicity as an adaptive paedomorphic trend along Crotalus dispersal in South America.

    PubMed

    Calvete, Juan J; Sanz, Libia; Cid, Pedro; de la Torre, Pilar; Flores-Díaz, Marietta; Dos Santos, M Cristina; Borges, Adolfo; Bremo, Adolfo; Angulo, Yamileth; Lomonte, Bruno; Alape-Girón, Alberto; Gutiérrez, José María

    2010-01-01

    We report a comparative venomic and antivenomic characterization of the venoms of newborn and adult specimens of the Central American rattlesnake, Crotalus simus, and of the subspecies cumanensis, durissus, ruruima, and terrificus of South American Crotalus durissus. Neonate and adult C. simus share about 50% of their venom proteome. The venom proteome of 6-week-old C. simus is predominantly made of the neurotoxic heterodimeric phospholipase A(2) (PLA(2) crotoxin) (55.9%) and serine proteinases (36%), whereas snake venom Zn(2+)-metalloproteinases (SVMPs), exclusively of class PIII, represent only 2% of the total venom proteins. In marked contrast, venom from adult C. simus comprises toxins from 7 protein families. A large proportion (71.7%) of these toxins are SVMPs, two-thirds of which belong to the PIII class. These toxin profiles correlate well with the overall biochemical and pharmacological features of venoms from adult (hemorrhagic) and newborn (neurotoxic) C. simus specimens. The venoms of the South American Crotalus subspecies belong to one of two distinct phenotypes. C. d. cumanensis exhibits high levels of SVMPs and low lethal potency (LD(50)), whereas C. d. subspecies terrificus, ruruima, and durissus have low SVMP activity and high neurotoxicity to mice. Their overall toxin compositions explain the outcome of envenomation by these species. Further, in all C. simus and C. durissus venoms, the concentration of neurotoxins (crotoxin and crotamine) is directly related with lethal activity, whereas lethality and metalloproteinase activity show an inverse relationship. The similar venom toxin profiles of newborn C. simus and adult C. durissus terrificus, ruruima, and durissus subspecies strongly suggests that the South American taxa have retained juvenile venom characteristics in the adult form (paedomorphism) along their North-South stepping-stone dispersal. The driving force behind paedomorphism is often competition or predation pressure. The increased

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

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

  6. Understanding the Snake Venom Metalloproteinases: An Interview with Jay Fox and José María Gutiérrez.

    PubMed

    Fox, Jay W; Gutiérrez, José María

    2017-01-16

    Jay W. Fox and José María Gutiérrez recently finished editing a Special Issue on the topic "Snake Venom Metalloproteinases" in Toxins. The Special Issue covers a wide range of topics, including the molecular evolution and structure of snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs), the mechanisms involved in the generation of diversity of SVMPs, the mechanism of action of SVMPs, and their role in the pathophysiology of envenomings, with implications for improving the therapy of envenomings. In this interview, we discussed with Jay W. Fox and José María Gutiérrez their research on the SVMPs and their perspectives on the future trends and challenges for studying snake venoms.

  7. Understanding the Snake Venom Metalloproteinases: An Interview with Jay Fox and José María Gutiérrez

    PubMed Central

    Fox, Jay W.; Gutiérrez, José María

    2017-01-01

    Jay W. Fox and José María Gutiérrez recently finished editing a Special Issue on the topic “Snake Venom Metalloproteinases” in Toxins. The Special Issue covers a wide range of topics, including the molecular evolution and structure of snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs), the mechanisms involved in the generation of diversity of SVMPs, the mechanism of action of SVMPs, and their role in the pathophysiology of envenomings, with implications for improving the therapy of envenomings. In this interview, we discussed with Jay W. Fox and José María Gutiérrez their research on the SVMPs and their perspectives on the future trends and challenges for studying snake venoms. PMID:28275208

  8. Mimotopes of mutalysin-II from Lachesis muta snake venom induce hemorrhage inhibitory antibodies upon vaccination of rabbits.

    PubMed

    Machado de Avila, R A; Stransky, S; Velloso, M; Castanheira, P; Schneider, F S; Kalapothakis, E; Sanchez, E F; Nguyen, C; Molina, F; Granier, C; Chávez-Olórtegui, C

    2011-08-01

    Mutalysin-II (mut-II) from Lachesis muta snake venom is an endopeptidase with hemorrhagic activity. A mAb against mutalysin-II that neutralized the hemorrhagic effect was produced previously. To identify the mAb epitopes, sets of 15-mer overlapping peptides covering the mut-II amino acid sequence were synthesized using the SPOT method and tested but failed to react with the mAb. Using a phage-display approach seventeen clones reactive with mAb were identified. Additional immunoassays with the peptides and mAb identified the QCTMDQGRLRCR, TCATDQGRLRCT, HCFHDQGRVRCA, HCTMDQGRLRCR and SCMLDQGRSRCR sequences as possible epitopes. Immunization of rabbits with these peptides induced antibodies that recognize mut-II and protected against the hemorrhagic effects of Lachesis venom.

  9. Primary structures and partial toxicological characterization of two phospholipases A2 from Micrurus mipartitus and Micrurus dumerilii coral snake venoms.

    PubMed

    Rey-Suárez, Paola; Núñez, Vitelbina; Saldarriaga-Córdoba, Mónica; Lomonte, Bruno

    2017-03-14

    Snake venom phospholipases A2 (PLA2) share high sequence identities and a conserved structural scaffold, but show important functional differences. Only a few PLA2s have been purified and characterized from coral snake (Micrurus spp.) venoms, and their role in envenomation remains largely unknown. In this report, we describe the isolation, sequencing and partial functional characterization of two Micrurus PLA2s: MmipPLA2 from Micrurus mipartitus and MdumPLA2 from Micrurus dumerilii, two species of clinical importance in Colombia. MmipPLA2 consisted of 119 amino acid residues with a predicted pI of 8.4, whereas MdumPLA2 consisted of 117 residues with a pI of 5.6. Both PLA2s showed the conserved 'group I' cysteine pattern and were enzymatically active, although MdumPLA2 had higher activity. The two enzymes differed notably in their toxicity, with MmipPLA2 being highly lethal to mice and mildly myotoxic, whereas MdumPLA2 was not lethal (up to 3 μg/g body weight) but strongly myotoxic. MdumPLA2 displayed higher anticoagulant activity than MmipPLA2in vitro and caused more sustained edema in the mouse footpad assay. Neither of these enzymes was cytolytic to cultured skeletal muscle C2C12 myotubes. Based on their structural differences, the two enzymes were placed in separate lineages in a partial phylogeny of Micrurus venom PLA2s and this classification agreed with their divergent biological activities. Overall, these findings highlight the structural and functional diversity of Micrurus venom PLA2.

  10. Comparison of total protein and enzyme levels in successive regenerations of venom from individual coralsnakes.

    PubMed

    Kopper, Randall A; Harper, George R; Occidental, Michael; Gamalie, Vlad; Spradley, Ples

    2015-07-01

    Coralsnakes produce highly potent neurotoxic venoms, but little is known about variations in specific enzyme components within a species or from one replenishment of venom to the next within the same animal. Since published studies are often conducted using venom pools from multiple snakes, individual differences are masked and variations among individual snakes and between subsequent venom regenerations from the same snake have rarely been documented. This study involves the analysis and comparison of four successive venom collections from each of nine individual coralsnakes in order to detect these differences. Significant variation was found within the successive re-synthesis of venom components. Even greater differences were observed between the venoms from similar individual snakes. Since studies of variation in enzymatic activity would be significant only if they were above these normal variations, it is important to be aware of these differences. These results suggest the importance of understanding the variations present within and between individuals of the same species when interpreting the potential significance of differences found as the result of genetic, environmental or ecological factors.

  11. Structural and binding studies of a C-type galactose-binding lectin from Bothrops jararacussu snake venom.

    PubMed

    Sartim, Marco A; Pinheiro, Matheus P; de Pádua, Ricardo A P; Sampaio, Suely V; Nonato, M Cristina

    2017-02-01

    BJcuL is a snake venom galactoside-binding lectin (SVgalL) isolated from Bothrops jararacussu and is involved in a wide variety of biological activities including triggering of pro-inflammatory response, disruption of microbial biofilm structure and induction of apoptosis. In the present work, we determined the crystallographic structure of BJcuL, the first holo structure of a SVgalL, and introduced the fluorescence-based thermal stability assay (Thermofluor) as a tool for screening and characterization of the binding mechanism of SVgalL ligands. BJcuL structure revealed the existence of a porous and flexible decameric arrangement composed of disulfide-linked dimers related by a five-fold symmetry. Each monomer contains the canonical carbohydrate recognition domain, a calcium ion required for BJcuL lectinic activity and a sodium ion required for protein stabilization. BJcuL thermostability was found to be induced by calcium ion and galactoside sugars which exhibit hyperbolic saturation profiles dependent on ligand concentration. Serendipitously, the gentamicin group of aminoglycoside antibiotics (gAGAs) was also identified as BJcuL ligands. On contrast, gAGAs exhibited a sigmoidal saturation profile compatible with a cooperative mechanism of binding. Thermofluor, hemagglutination inhibition assay and molecular docking strategies were used to identify a distinct binding site in BJcuL localized at the dimeric interface near the fully conserved intermolecular Cys86-Cys86 disulfide bond. The hybrid approach used in the present work provided novel insights into structural behavior and functional diversification of SVgaLs.

  12. Preliminary assessment of Hedychium coronarium essential oil on fibrinogenolytic and coagulant activity induced by Bothrops and Lachesis snake venoms

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The search for new inhibitors of snake venom toxins is essential to complement or even replace traditional antivenom therapy, especially in relation to compounds that neutralize the local effects of envenomations. Besides their possible use as alternative to traditional antivenom therapy, some plant species possess bioactive secondary metabolites including essential oils, which can be extracted from weeds that are considered substantial problems for agriculture, such as Hedychium coronarium. Methods The essential oils of leaves and rhizomes from H. coronarium were extracted by hydrodistillation, and their potential inhibitory effects on the coagulant and fibrinogenolytic activities induced by the venoms of Lachesis muta, Bothrops atrox and Bothrops moojeni were analyzed. Citrated human plasma was used to evaluate the clotting time whereas changes in fibrinogen molecules were visualized by electrophoresis in polyacrylamide gel. The experimental design used for testing coagulation inhibition was randomized in a 3 × 2 factorial arrangement (concentration × essential oils), with three replications. The essential oils were compared since they were extracted from different organs of the same botanical species, H. coronarium. Results The results suggest that the oils interact with venom proteases and plasma constituents, since all oils evaluated, when previously incubated with venoms, were able to inhibit the clotting effect, with less inhibition when oils and plasma were preincubated prior to the addition of venoms. Conclusions Thus, after extensive characterization of their pharmacological and toxicological effects, the essential oils can be used as an alternative to complement serum therapy, especially considering that these plant metabolites generally do not require specific formulations and may be used topically immediately after extraction. PMID:26413083

  13. Tropical marine neurotoxins: venoms to drugs.

    PubMed

    Watters, Michael R

    2005-09-01

    Neurotoxic venoms are common among tropical marine creatures, which have specialized apparatuses for delivery of the venoms. These include jellyfish and anemones, venomous cone snails, venomous fish, stingrays, sea snakes, and venomous octopuses. Numerous toxic neuropeptides are found within these venoms, and some can discriminate between closely related intracellular targets, a characteristic that makes them useful to define cation channels and attractive for drug development. A synthetic derivative of an omega-conotoxin is now available, representing a new class of analgesics. In general, toxic marine venoms contain proteins that are heat labile, providing opportunity for therapeutic intervention following envenomation, while ingestible seafood toxins are thermostable toxins. Ingestible toxins found in the tropics include those associated with reef fish, pufferfish, and some shellfish, which serve as food-chain vectors for toxins produced by marine microorganisms.

  14. Biochemical characterization of the venom of the coral snake Micrurus tener and comparative biological activities in the mouse and a reptile model.

    PubMed

    Bénard-Valle, Melisa; Carbajal-Saucedo, Alejandro; de Roodt, Adolfo; López-Vera, Estuardo; Alagón, Alejandro

    2014-01-01

    The objective of this study was to identify the venom components that could play a relevant role during envenomation caused by the coral snake Micrurus tener, through its biochemical characterization as well as the analysis of its effects on a murine model. Furthermore, it aimed to evaluate crude venom, in addition to its components, for possible specificity of action on a natural prey model (Conopsis lineata). The toxicity of the crude venom (delivered subcutaneously) showed a significant difference between the Median Lethal Dose (LD₅₀) in mice (4.4 μg/g) and in Conopsis lineata (12.1 μg/g) that was not observed when comparing the Median Paralyzing Dose (PD₅₀) values (mice = 4.7 μg/g; snakes = 4.1 μg/g). These results are evidence that the choice of study model strongly influences the apparent effects of crude venom. Moreover, based on the observed physical signs in the animal models, it was concluded that the most important physical effect caused by the venom is flaccid paralysis, which facilitates capture and subduing of prey regardless of whether it is alive; death is a logical consequence of the lack of oxygenation. Venom fractionation using a C18 reverse phase column yielded 35 fractions from which 16.6% caused paralysis and/or death to both animal models, 21.9% caused paralysis and/or death only to C. lineata and 1.6% were murine specific. Surprisingly, the diversity of snake-specific fractions did not reflect a difference between the PD₅₀s of the crude venom in mice and snakes, making it impossible to assume some type of specificity for either of the study models. Finally, the great diversity and abundance of fractions with no observable effect in snakes or mice (42.7%) suggested that the observed lethal fractions are not the only relevant toxic fractions within the venom and emphasized the possible relevance of interaction between components to generate the syndrome caused by the venom as a whole.

  15. Unmasking Snake Venom of Bothrops leucurus: Purification and Pharmacological and Structural Characterization of New PLA2 Bleu TX-III

    PubMed Central

    Marangoni, Fábio André; Ponce-Soto, Luis Alberto; Marangoni, Sergio; Landucci, Elen Cristina Teizem

    2013-01-01

    Bleu TX-III was isolated from Bothrops leucurus snake venom on one-step analytical chromatography reverse phase HPLC, was homogeneous on SDS-PAGE, and was confirmed by Q-Tof Ultima API ESI/MS (TOF MS mode) mass spectrometry in 14243.8 Da. Multiple alignments of Bleu TX-III show high degree of homology with basic PLA2 myotoxins from other Bothrops venoms. Our studies on local and systemic myotoxicity “in vivo” reveal that Bleu TX-III is myotoxin with local but not systemic action due to the decrease in the plasmatic CK levels when Bleu TX-III is administrated by intravenous route in mice (dose 1 and 5 μg). And at a dose of 20 μg myotoxin behaves like a local and systemic action. Bleu TX-III induced moderate marked paw edema, evidencing the local increase in vascular permeability. The inflammatory events induced in the mice (I.M.) were investigated. The increase in the levels of IL-1, IL-6, and TNF-α was observed in the plasma. It is concluded that Bleu TX-III induces inflammatory events in this model. The enzymatic phospholipid hydrolysis may be relevant to these phenomena. Bothrops leucurus venom is still not extensively explored, and the knowledge of its toxins separately through the study of structure/function will contribute for a better understanding of its action mechanism. PMID:23509815

  16. Quantitative Proteomic Analysis of Venoms from Russian Vipers of Pelias Group: Phospholipases A2 are the Main Venom Components

    PubMed Central

    Kovalchuk, Sergey I.; Ziganshin, Rustam H.; Starkov, Vladislav G.; Tsetlin, Victor I.; Utkin, Yuri N.

    2016-01-01

    Venoms of most Russian viper species are poorly characterized. Here, by quantitative chromato-mass-spectrometry, we analyzed protein and peptide compositions of venoms from four Vipera species (V. kaznakovi, V. renardi, V. orlovi and V. nikolskii) inhabiting different regions of Russia. In all these species, the main components were phospholipases A2, their content ranging from 24% in V. orlovi to 65% in V. nikolskii. Altogether, enzyme content in venom of V. nikolskii reached ~85%. Among the non-enzymatic proteins, the most abundant were disintegrins (14%) in the V. renardi venom, C-type lectin like (12.5%) in V. kaznakovi, cysteine-rich venom proteins (12%) in V. orlovi and venom endothelial growth factors (8%) in V. nikolskii. In total, 210 proteins and 512 endogenous peptides were identified in the four viper venoms. They represented 14 snake venom protein families, most of which were found in the venoms of Vipera snakes previously. However, phospholipase B and nucleotide degrading enzymes were reported here for the first time. Compositions of V. kaznakovi and V. orlovi venoms were described for the first time and showed the greatest similarity among the four venoms studied, which probably reflected close relationship between these species within the “kaznakovi” complex. PMID:27077884

  17. Quantitative Proteomic Analysis of Venoms from Russian Vipers of Pelias Group: Phospholipases A₂ are the Main Venom Components.

    PubMed

    Kovalchuk, Sergey I; Ziganshin, Rustam H; Starkov, Vladislav G; Tsetlin, Victor I; Utkin, Yuri N

    2016-04-12

    Venoms of most Russian viper species are poorly characterized. Here, by quantitative chromato-mass-spectrometry, we analyzed protein and peptide compositions of venoms from four Vipera species (V. kaznakovi, V. renardi, V. orlovi and V. nikolskii) inhabiting different regions of Russia. In all these species, the main components were phospholipases A₂, their content ranging from 24% in V. orlovi to 65% in V. nikolskii. Altogether, enzyme content in venom of V. nikolskii reached ~85%. Among the non-enzymatic proteins, the most abundant were disintegrins (14%) in the V. renardi venom, C-type lectin like (12.5%) in V. kaznakovi, cysteine-rich venom proteins (12%) in V. orlovi and venom endothelial growth factors (8%) in V. nikolskii. In total, 210 proteins and 512 endogenous peptides were identified in the four viper venoms. They represented 14 snake venom protein families, most of which were found in the venoms of Vipera snakes previously. However, phospholipase B and nucleotide degrading enzymes were reported here for the first time. Compositions of V. kaznakovi and V. orlovi venoms were described for the first time and showed the greatest similarity among the four venoms studied, which probably reflected close relationship between these species within the "kaznakovi" complex.

  18. Snake bite: pit vipers.

    PubMed

    Peterson, Michael E

    2006-11-01

    Pit vipers are the largest group of venomous snakes in the United States and are involved in an estimated 150,000 bites annually of dogs and cats. The severity of any pit viper bite is related to the volume and toxicity of the venom injected as well as the location of the bite, which may influence the rate of venom uptake. The toxicity of rattlesnake venom varies widely. It is possible for pit vipers' venom to be strictly neurotoxic with virtually no local signs of envenomation. Venom consists of 90% water and has a minimum of 10 enzymes and 3 to 12 nonenzymatic proteins and peptides in any individual snake. The onset of clinical signs after envenomation may be delayed for several hours. The presence of fang marks does not indicate that envenomation has occurred, only that a bite has taken place. Systemic clinical manifestations encompass a wide variety of problems including pain, weakness, dizziness, nausea, severe hypotension, and thrombocytopenia. The victim's clotting abnormalities largely depend upon the species of snake involved. Venom induced thrombocytopenia occurs in approximately 30% of envenomations. Many first aid measures have been advocated for pit viper bite victims, none has been shown to prevent morbidity or mortality. Current recommendations for first aid in the field are to keep the victim calm, keep the bite site below heart level if possible, and transport the victim to a veterinary medical facility for primary medical intervention. The patient should be hospitalized and monitored closely for a minimum of 8 hours for the onset of signs of envenomation. The only proven specific therapy against pit viper envenomation is the administration of antivenin. The dosage of antivenin needed is calculated relative to the amount of venom injected, the body mass of the victim, and the bite site. The average dosage in dogs and cats is 1 to 2 vials of antivenin.

  19. A survey on some biochemical and pharmacological activities of venom from two Colombian colubrid snakes, Erythrolamprus bizona (Double-banded coral snake mimic) and Pseudoboa neuwiedii (Neuwied's false boa).

    PubMed

    Torres-Bonilla, Kristian A; Floriano, Rafael S; Schezaro-Ramos, Raphael; Rodrigues-Simioni, Léa; da Cruz-Höfling, Maria Alice

    2017-06-01

    Colombian colubrid snake venoms have been poorly studied. They represent a great resource of biological, ecological, toxinological and pharmacological research. We assessed some enzymatic properties and neuromuscular effects of Erythrolamprus bizona and Pseudoboa neuwiedii venoms from Colombia. Proteolytic, amidolytic and phospholipase A2 (PLA2) activities were analyzed using colorimetric assays and the neuromuscular activity was analyzed in chick biventer cervicis (BC) preparations. The venom of both species showed very low PLA2 and amidolytic activities; however, both exhibited high proteolytic activity, which in E. bizona venom surpassed that of P. neuwiedii venom. E. bizona and P. neuwiedii venoms provoked partial neuromuscular blockade, which was more prominent in P. neuwiedii venom. E. bizona venom (30 μg/ml) induced a significant potentiation of the contracture response to exogenous ACh (110 μM), which was not accompanied by twitch height alteration, whereas the highest venom concentration (100 μg/ml) inhibited contracture responses to both ACh and KCl (40 mM). In contrast, P. neuwiedii venom (30 and 100 μg/ml) caused significant reduction in the contracture responses to exogenous ACh and KCl. The morphological analyses showed high myotoxic effects in the muscle fibers of BC incubated with either venoms; however, they are more prominent in the P. neuwiedii venom. Our results suggest that the myotoxicity of the venom of the two Colombian species can be ascribed to their high proteolytic activity. An interesting data was the potentiation of the ACh-induced contracture, but not the twitch height, caused by E. bizona venom, at a concentration that is harmless to muscle fibers integrity. This phenomenon remains to be further elucidated, and suggest that a possible involvement of post-synaptic receptors cannot be discarded. This work is a contribution to expand the knowledge on colubrid venoms; it allows envisaging that the two venoms offer the

  20. Snake bite: coral snakes.

    PubMed

    Peterson, Michael E

    2006-11-01

    North American coral snakes are distinctively colored beginning with a black snout and an alternating pattern of black, yellow, and red. They have fixed front fangs and a poorly developed system for venom delivery, requiring a chewing action to inject the venom. The severity of a coral snake bite is related to the volume of venom injected and the size of the victim. The length of the snake correlates positively with the snakes venom yield. Coral snake venom is primarily neurotoxic with little local tissue reaction or pain at the bite site. The net effect of the neurotoxins is a curare like syndrome. In canine victims there have been reports of marked hemolysis with severe anemia and hemoglobinuria. The onset of clinical signs may be delayed for as much as 10 to 18 hours. The victim begins to have alterations in mental status and develops generalized weakness and muscle fasciculations. Progression to paralysis of the limbs and respiratory muscles then follows. The best flied response to coral snake envenomation is rapid transport to a veterinary medical facility capable of 24 hour critical care and assisted ventilation. First aid treatment advocated in Australia for Elapid bites is the immediate use of a compression bandage. The victim should be hospitalized for a minimum of 48 hours for continuous monitoring. The only definitive treatment for coral snake envenomation is the administration of antivenin (M. fulvius). Once clinical signs of coral snake envenomation become manifest they progress with alarming rapidity and are difficult to reverse. If antivenin is not available or if its administration is delayed, supportive care includes respiratory support. Assisted mechanical ventilation can be used but may have to be employed for up to 48 to 72 hours.

  1. Synthetic peptides corresponding to sequences of snake venom neurotoxins and rabies virus glycoprotein bind to the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor.

    PubMed

    Lentz, T L; Hawrot, E; Wilson, P T

    1987-01-01

    Peptides corresponding to portions of loop 2 of snake venom curare-mimetic neurotoxins and to a structurally similar region of rabies virus glycoprotein were synthesized. Interaction of these peptides with purified Torpedo electric organ acetylcholine receptor was tested by measuring their ability to block the binding of 125I-labeled alpha-bungarotoxin to the receptor. In addition, inhibition of alpha-bungarotoxin binding to a 32-residue synthetic peptide corresponding to positions 173-204 of the alpha-subunit was determined. Neurotoxin and glycoprotein peptides corresponding to toxin loop 2 inhibited labeled toxin binding to the receptor with IC50 values comparable to those of nicotine and the competitive antagonist d-tubocurarine and to the alpha-subunit peptides with apparent affinities between those of d-tubocurarine and alpha-cobratoxin. Substitution of neurotoxin residue Arg37, the proposed counterpart of the quaternary ammonium of acetylcholine, with a negatively charged Glu residue reduced the apparent affinity about 10-fold. Peptides containing the neurotoxin invariant residue Trp29 and 10- to 100-fold higher affinities than peptides lacking this residue. These results demonstrate that relatively short synthetic peptides retain some of the binding ability of the native protein from which they are derived, indicating that such peptides are useful in the study of protein-protein interactions. The ability of the peptides to compete alpha-bungarotoxin binding to the receptor with apparent affinities comparable to those of other cholinergic ligands indicates that loop 2 of the neurotoxins and the structurally similar segment of the rabies virus glycoprotein act as recognition sites for the acetylcholine receptor. Invariant toxin residues Arg37 and Trp29 and their viral homologs play important, although not essential, roles in binding, possibly by interaction with complementary anionic and hydrophobic subsites on the acetylcholine receptor. The alpha

  2. Occurrence of sulfated fucose branches in fucosylated chondroitin sulfate are essential for the polysaccharide effect preventing muscle damage induced by toxins and crude venom from Bothrops jararacussu snake.

    PubMed

    Monteiro-Machado, Marcos; Tomaz, Marcelo A; Fonseca, Roberto J C; Strauch, Marcelo A; Cons, Bruno L; Borges, Paula A; Patrão-Neto, Fernando C; Tavares-Henriques, Matheus S; Teixeira-Cruz, Jhonatha M; Calil-Elias, Sabrina; Cintra, Adélia C O; Martinez, Ana Maria B; Mourão, Paulo A S; Melo, Paulo A

    2015-05-01

    Snake envenoming is an important public health problem around the world, particularly in tropics. Beyond deaths, morbidity induced by snake venoms, such as myotoxicity, is of pivotal consequence to population. Bothrops jararacussu is the main venomous snake in southeast region of Brazil, and particularly presents strong myotoxic effect. The only available therapy, antibothropic antivenom, poorly affects venom-induced myotoxicity. The aim of this study is to assess the ability of fucosylated chondroitin sulfate (fucCS), a glycosaminoglycan with anticoagulant and antithrombotic properties, and its derivatives to inhibit toxic activities of B. jararacussu crude venom and its isolated toxins, named bothropstoxins (BthTX-I and BthTX-II). The in vitro myotoxic activities induced by crude venom, by BthTX-I alone and by toxins together were abolished by fucCS. Carboxyl reduction (fucCS-CR) kept this ability whereas defucosilation (defucCS) abrogates myoprotection. We observed the same pattern in the response of these polysaccharides in antagonizing the increase in plasma creatine kinase (CK) levels, the reduction of skeletal muscle CK content and the rise of myeloperoxidase (MPO) activity induced by crude venom and isolated toxins. FucCS inhibited edematogenic activity and partially prevented the reduction of total leukocytes in blood when pre-incubated with crude venom. Furthermore, the venom procoagulant effect was completely antagonized by increasing concentrations of fucCS, although this polyanion could stop neither the tail bleeding nor the skin hemorrhage induced by Bothrops jararaca venom. The B. jararacussu phospholipase, hyaluronidase, proteolytic and collagenase activities were inhibited in vitro. The results suggest that fucCS could be able to interact with both toxins, and it is able to inhibit BthTX-II phospholipase activity. Light microscopy of extensor digitorum longus muscle (EDL) muscle showed myoprotection by fucCS, once necrotic areas, edema and

  3. Bp-13 PLA2: Purification and Neuromuscular Activity of a New Asp49 Toxin Isolated from Bothrops pauloensis Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Sucasaca-Monzón, Georgina; Randazzo-Moura, Priscila; Rocha, Thalita; Vilca-Quispe, Augusto; Ponce-Soto, Luis Alberto; Marangoni, Sérgio; da Cruz-Höfling, Maria Alice; Rodrigues-Simioni, Léa

    2015-01-01

    A new PLA2 (Bp-13) was purified from Bothrops pauloensis snake venom after a single chromatographic step of RP-HPLC on μ-Bondapak C-18. Amino acid analysis showed a high content of hydrophobic and basic amino acids and 14 half-cysteine residues. The N-terminal sequence showed a high degree of homology with basic Asp49 PLA2 myotoxins from other Bothrops venoms. Bp-13 showed allosteric enzymatic behavior and maximal activity at pH 8.1, 36°–45°C. Full Bp-13 PLA2 activity required Ca2+; its PLA2 activity was inhibited by Mg2+, Mn2+, Sr2+, and Cd2+ in the presence and absence of 1 mM Ca2+. In the mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm (PND) preparation, the time for 50% paralysis was concentration-dependent (P < 0.05). Both the replacement of Ca2+ by Sr2+ and temperature lowering (24°C) inhibited the Bp-13 PLA2-induced twitch-tension blockade. Bp-13 PLA2 inhibited the contractile response to direct electrical stimulation in curarized mouse PND preparation corroborating its contracture effect. In biventer cervicis preparations, Bp-13 induced irreversible twitch-tension blockade and the KCl evoked contracture was partially, but significantly, inhibited (P > 0.05). The main effect of this new Asp49 PLA2 of Bothrops pauloensis venom is on muscle fiber sarcolemma, with avian preparation being less responsive than rodent preparation. The study enhances biochemical and pharmacological characterization of B. pauloensis venom. PMID:25789175

  4. Effects of neutrophil depletion in the local pathological alterations and muscle regeneration in mice injected with Bothrops jararaca snake venom

    PubMed Central

    Teixeira, Catarina F P; Chaves, Fernando; Zamunér, Stella R; Fernandes, Cristina M; Zuliani, Juliana P; Cruz-Hofling, María Alice; Fernandes, Irene; Gutiérrez, José María

    2005-01-01

    In order to study the role of neutrophils in the acute local pathological alterations induced by Bothrops jararaca snake venom, and in the process of skeletal muscle regeneration that follows, an experimental model was developed in mice pretreated with either an anti-mouse granulocyte rat monoclonal immunoglobulin G, which induces a profound neutropenia, or an isotype-matched control antibody. B. jararaca venom induced prominent haemorrhage and oedema, but only a moderate myonecrosis. No significant differences were observed in the extent of local haemorrhage, oedema and myonecrosis between neutropenic and control mice, suggesting that neutrophils do not play a determinant role in the acute pathological alterations induced by B. jararaca venom in this experimental model. Moreover, no differences were observed in skeletal muscle regeneration between these two experimental groups. In both the cases, limited areas of myonecrosis were associated with a drastic damage to the microvasculature and a scarce inflammatory infiltrate, with the consequent lack of removal of necrotic debris during the first week, resulting in a poor regenerative response at this time interval. Subsequently, a similar regenerative process occurred in both groups, and by 30 days, necrotic areas were substituted by groups of small regenerating muscle fibres. It is suggested that the drastic effect exerted by B. jararaca venom in the microvasculature precludes an effective access of inflammatory cells to necrotic areas, thereby compromising an effective removal of necrotic debris; this explains the poor regenerative response observed during the first week and the fact that there were no differences between neutropenic and control mice. As neutropenia in this model lasted only 7 days, the successful regenerative process observed at 30 days is associated with revascularization of necrotic regions and with a successful removal by phagocytes of necrotic debris in both groups. PMID:15810982

  5. Snake venoms. The amino-acid sequence of trypsin inhibitor E of Dendroaspis polylepis polylepis (Black Mamba) venom.

    PubMed

    Joubert, F J; Strydom, D J

    1978-06-01

    Trypsin inhibitor E from black mamba venom comprises 59 amino acid residues in a single polypeptide chain, cross-linked by three intrachain disulphide bridges. The complete primary structure of inhibitor E was elucidated. The sequence is homologous with trypsin inhibitors from different sources. Unique among this homologous series of proteinase inhibitors, inhibitor E has an affinity for transition metal ions, exemplified here by Cu2 and Co2+.

  6. Recruitment of glycosyl hydrolase proteins in a cone snail venomous arsenal: further insights into biomolecular features of Conus venoms.

    PubMed

    Violette, Aude; Leonardi, Adrijana; Piquemal, David; Terrat, Yves; Biass, Daniel; Dutertre, Sébastien; Noguier, Florian; Ducancel, Frédéric; Stöcklin, Reto; Križaj, Igor; Favreau, Philippe

    2012-02-01

    Cone snail venoms are considered an untapped reservoir of extremely diverse peptides, named conopeptides, displaying a wide array of pharmacological activities. We report here for the first time, the presence of high molecular weight compounds that participate in the envenomation cocktail used by these marine snails. Using a combination of proteomic and transcriptomic approaches, we identified glycosyl hydrolase proteins, of the hyaluronidase type (Hyal), from the dissected and injectable venoms ("injectable venom" stands for the venom variety obtained by milking of the snails. This is in contrast to the "dissected venom", which was obtained from dissected snails by extraction of the venom glands) of a fish-hunting cone snail, Conus consors (Pionoconus clade). The major Hyal isoform, Conohyal-Cn1, is expressed as a mixture of numerous glycosylated proteins in the 50 kDa molecular mass range, as observed in 2D gel and mass spectrometry analyses. Further proteomic analysis and venom duct mRNA sequencing allowed full sequence determination. Additionally, unambiguous segment location of at least three glycosylation sites could be determined, with glycans corresponding to multiple hexose (Hex) and N-acetylhexosamine (HexNAc) moieties. With respect to other known Hyals, Conohyal-Cn1 clearly belongs to the hydrolase-type of Hyals, with strictly conserved consensus catalytic donor and positioning residues. Potent biological activity of the native Conohyals could be confirmed in degrading hyaluronic acid. A similar Hyal sequence was also found in the venom duct transcriptome of C. adamsonii (Textilia clade), implying a possible widespread recruitment of this enzyme family in fish-hunting cone snail venoms. These results provide the first detailed Hyal sequence characterized from a cone snail venom, and to a larger extent in the Mollusca phylum, thus extending our knowledge on this protein family and its evolutionary selection in marine snail venoms.

  7. Viperatoxin-II: A novel viper venom protein as an effective bactericidal agent

    PubMed Central

    Samy, Ramar Perumal; Stiles, Bradley G.; Chinnathambi, Arunachalam; Zayed, M.E.; Alharbi, Sulaiman Ali; Franco, Octavio Luiz; Rowan, Edward G.; Kumar, Alan Prem; Lim, Lina H.K.; Sethi, Gautam

    2015-01-01

    Infections caused by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) have become a rising threat to public health. There is an urgent need for development of promising new therapeutic agents against drug resistant bacteria like S. aureus. This report discusses purification and characterization of proteins from Indian Russell’s viper snake venom. Novel 15-kDa proteins called “Viperatoxin” (VipTx-I and VipTx-II) were extracted from the whole venom and evaluated using in vitro antimicrobial experiments. The N-terminal amino acid sequence of “Viperatoxin” showed high sequence homology to daboiatoxin isolated from the same venom and also matched phospholipase A2 (PLA2) enzymes isolated from other snake venoms. In an in vitro plate assay, VipTx-II but not VipTx-I showed strong antimicrobial effects against S. aureus and Burkholderia pseudomallei (KHW & TES), Proteus vulgaris and P. mirabilis. The VipTx-II was further tested by a broth-dilution assay at 100–3.1 μg/ml concentrations. The most potent bactericidal effect was found at the lowest dilutions (MICs of 6.25 μg/ml) against B. pseudomallei, S. aureus and P. vulgaris (MICs of 12.25 μg/ml). Electron microscopic investigation revealed that the protein-induced bactericidal potency was closely associated with pore formation and membrane damage, even at the lowest concentrations (<20 μg/ml). The toxin caused a low level of cytotoxic effects as observed in human (THP-1) cells at higher concentrations. Molecular weight determinations of VipTx-II by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis showed one major, along with a few minor bands. The results indicate that VipTx-II plays a significant role in bactericidal and membrane damaging effects in vitro. Non-cytotoxic properties on human cells highlight it as a promising candidate for further evaluation of antimicrobial potential in vivo. PMID:26793432

  8. Varespladib (LY315920) Appears to Be a Potent, Broad-Spectrum, Inhibitor of Snake Venom Phospholipase A2 and a Possible Pre-Referral Treatment for Envenomation

    PubMed Central

    Lewin, Matthew; Samuel, Stephen; Merkel, Janie; Bickler, Philip

    2016-01-01

    Snakebite remains a neglected medical problem of the developing world with up to 125,000 deaths each year despite more than a century of calls to improve snakebite prevention and care. An estimated 75% of fatalities from snakebite occur outside the hospital setting. Because phospholipase A2 (PLA2) activity is an important component of venom toxicity, we sought candidate PLA2 inhibitors by directly testing drugs. Surprisingly, varespladib and its orally bioavailable prodrug, methyl-varespladib showed high-level secretory PLA2 (sPLA2) inhibition at nanomolar and picomolar concentrations against 28 medically important snake venoms from six continents. In vivo proof-of-concept studies with varespladib had striking survival benefit against lethal doses of Micrurus fulvius and Vipera berus venom, and suppressed venom-induced sPLA2 activity in rats challenged with 100% lethal doses of M. fulvius venom. Rapid development and deployment of a broad-spectrum PLA2 inhibitor alone or in combination with other small molecule inhibitors of snake toxins (e.g., metalloproteases) could fill the critical therapeutic gap spanning pre-referral and hospital setting. Lower barriers for clinical testing of safety tested, repurposed small molecule therapeutics are a potentially economical and effective path forward to fill the pre-referral gap in the setting of snakebite. PMID:27571102

  9. Hemodynamic responses to Lachesis muta (South American bushmaster) snake venom in anesthetized rats.

    PubMed

    Dias, Lourdes; Rodrigues, Mariana A P; Rennó, André L; Stroka, Alessandra; Inoue, Bruna R; Panunto, Patrícia C; Melgarejo, Anibal R; Hyslop, Stephen

    2016-12-01

    In this work, we examined the hemodynamic responses to Lachesis muta (South American bushmaster) venom in anesthetized male Wistar rats. Venom (1.5 mg/kg, i.v.) caused immediate hypotension that was followed by a gradual return towards baseline over 60 min; there were no significant changes in heart rate, ECG parameters and respiratory rate. A higher dose (3 mg/kg, i.v.) caused sustained hypotension, variable bradycardia, respiratory depression and fluctuations in ECG; death occurred within 10-60 min. Venom injected intramuscularly (15 mg/kg) produced a smaller decrease in blood pressure that was more persistent than with 1.5 mg/kg (i.v.). Pre-treatment with atenolol (selective β1-adrenergic receptor antagonist) potentiated the response to venom (1.5 mg/kg, i.v.) and resulted in a hemodynamic profile similar to that seen with 3 mg/kg (i.v.). Macroscopically, systemic hemorrhage was seen only in the ileum, whereas histological analysis revealed extensive pulmonary hemorrhage; the heart, liver and kidney were generally unaffected. Intravascular pulmonary thrombosis occurred with venom given i.v. and i.m., but was less marked with the latter route. In rat isolated perfused hearts, venom caused a persistent decrease in left ventricular developed pressure but no change in heart rate, coronary flow or ECG; there was tissue necrosis and release of CK-MB that were abolished by pre-treating venom with the PLA2 inhibitor p-bromophenacyl bromide. These results show that in rats L. muta venom causes hypotension, bradycardia and respiratory depression, depending on the dose and route of administration. The hemodynamic responses apparently do not involve direct cardiotoxicity and are modulated by the adrenergic system.

  10. Ability of a synthetic coumestan to antagonize Bothrops snake venom activities.

    PubMed

    Melo, Paulo A; Pinheiro, Diogo A; Ricardo, Hilmar Dias; Fernandes, Fabrício F A; Tomaz, Marcelo A; El-Kik, Camila Z; Strauch, Marcelo A; da Fonseca, Tatiane F; Sifuentes, Daniel N; Calil-Elias, Sabrina; Buarque, Camilla D; Brito, Flávia V; Costa, Paulo R R; Da Silva, Alcides J M

    2010-01-01

    We investigated a synthetic coumestan named LQB93 and similar compounds abilities to antagonize activities of Bothrops jararacussu and Bothrops jararaca crude venoms in different protocols. The antimyotoxic activity was evaluated in vitro by the rate of release of creatine kinase (CK) from isolated mouse extensor digitorum longus muscle (EDL) induced by B. jararacussu (25 g/ml). For in vivo studies, B. jararacussu venom (1.0 mg/kg) was preincubated with LQB93 (0.1-30 mg/kg), during 30 min, for later injection in mouse tight and evaluation of the antimyotoxic and anti-edematogenic effects. LQB93 antagonized in vitro, the increase of CK release from the EDL muscle (IC(50)=0.0291 M). It also showed in vivo, antimyotoxic and anti-edematogenic effects that were dose-dependent with ID50 of 0.17 mg/kg and 0.14 mg/kg, respectively. The hemorrhage induced by B. jararaca (1.0 mg/kg) venom in the mouse skin, was abolished by LQB93 (10.0 mg/kg) preincubated with venom. Like wedelolactone, LQB93 protected rat isolated heart on a Langendorff preparation, from the cardiotoxicity of B. jararacussu venom. LQB93 inhibit the effects of Bothrops venoms like wedelolactone, a natural compound isolated from the plant Eclipta prostrata.

  11. Identification and characterization of venom proteins of two solitary wasps, Eumenes pomiformis and Orancistrocerus drewseni.

    PubMed

    Baek, Ji Hyeong; Lee, Si Hyeock

    2010-09-15

    Secretory proteins were identified in the venoms of two solitary hunting wasps, Eumenes pomiformis and Orancistrocerus drewseni, by SDS-PAGE in conjunction with mass analysis. More than 30 protein bands (2-300 kDa) were detected from the crude venom of each wasp. With the aid of the previously constructed venom gland/sac-specific EST libraries, a total of 31 and 20 proteins were identified from 18 to 20 distinctive protein bands of E. pomiformis and O. drewseni venoms, respectively. Arginine kinase was the most predominant protein in both wasp venoms. Along with the full-length arginine kinase, a truncated form, which was known to have paralytic activity on a spider, was a common predominant protein in the two wasp venoms. Insulin/insulin-like peptide-binding protein was abundantly found only in E. pomiformis venom, which might be due to its unique behaviors of oviposition and provision. The presence of various immune response-related proteins and antioxidants suggested that wasps might use their venom to maintain prey fresh while feeding wasp larvae by protecting the prey from microbial invasion and physiological stresses. It seemed that some venom proteins are secreted into venom fluid from venom gland cells via exosomes, not by signal sequence-mediated transport processes.

  12. Antibodies against synthetic epitopes inhibit the enzymatic activity of mutalysin II, a metalloproteinase from bushmaster snake venom.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, R N; Machado de Avila, R A; Sanchez, E F; Maria, W S; Molina, F; Granier, C; Chávez-Olórtegui, C

    2006-12-15

    Mutalysin II (mut-II), a 22.5kDa zinc endopeptidase isolated from bushmaster (Lachesis muta muta) snake venom, is a direct acting fibrin(ogen)olytic proteinase. It induces monoclonal and polyclonal antibodies which efficiently neutralize the hemorrhagic effect of L. muta and several Bothrops whole venoms. To characterize epitopes of protective antibodies we have used the Spot method of multiple peptide synthesis to prepare 64 overlapping dodecapeptides frameshifted by three residues, covering the complete amino acid sequence of mut-II. The rabbit anti-mut-II antibodies binding pattern to peptides revealed several continuous antigenic regions: one in the N-terminal part, two in the central region and the other in the C-terminal of mut-II. By using homology modelling, a three-dimensional model of mut-II was built which showed that epitopes are surface exposed. Anti-peptide antibodies were raised against three peptides (one representative of each epitope region) covalently coupled as a mixture to keyhole limpet hemocyanin. Purified IgG from the resulting anti- peptide antibodies cross-reacted with mut-II and induced a dose-dependent inhibition of the mut-II catalyzed proteolysis of fibrinogen.

  13. Anticancer Activity a of Caspian Cobra (Naja naja oxiana) snake Venom in Human Cancer Cell Lines Via Induction of Apoptosis

    PubMed Central

    Ebrahim, Karim; Vatanpour, Hossein; Zare, Abbas; Shirazi, Farshad H.; Nakhjavani, Mryam

    2016-01-01

    Cancer is the leading cause of death worldwide. Current anticancer drugs involve various toxic side effects; efforts are ongoing to develop new anticancer agents especially from the screening of natural compounds. Present study investigated cytotoxic effects and mode of cell death induced by the Caspian cobra venom in some human cancer cell lines. Cytotoxic effects of snake venom toxins (SVT) were investigated via monitoring of morphological changes, MTT, trypan blue exclusion and LDH release assays. Mechanism of cell death was determined by AO/EtBr double staining, caspase-3 activity assay, flow cytometric analysis of apoptosis and mitochondrial membrane potential measurement. In morphological analysis, apoptotic alterations related to apoptosis such as cytoplasmic blebbing, chromatin condensation and irregularity in shape were seen. IC50 of SVT in HepG2, MCF7and DU145 cell lines were 26.59, 28.85 and 21.17µg/mL, respectively and significantly different from the MDCK normal cell line (IC50=47.1 µg/mL). AO/EtBr double staining showed the best apoptotic/necrotic ratio at 15 µg/mL after 48 h. LDH release showed no significant differences between 10 µg/mL SVT and cisplatin. Flowcytometric analysis confirms mitochondrial membrane potential loss and more than 95% apoptotic cell death at 15 µg/mL. Caspase-3 was significantly activated at doses higher than 2.5 μg/mL with a maximal activity at 10 μg/mL. Results from this study demonstrate that SVT induces mitochondrial and caspase-3 dependent apoptosis in cancer cell lines with minimum effects on studied normal cell. This potential might candidate this venom as a suitable choice for cancer treatment PMID:28228809

  14. Snakes! Snakes! Snakes!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nature Naturally, 1983

    1983-01-01

    Designed for students in grades 4-6, the teaching unit presents illustrations and facts about snakes. Topics include common snakes found in the United States, how snakes eat, how snakes shed their skin, poisonous snakes, the Eastern Indigo snake, and the anatomy of a snake. A student page includes a crossword puzzle and surprising snake facts. A…

  15. [In relation to Cleopatra and snake bites].

    PubMed

    Espinoza, R

    2001-10-01

    Cleopatra VII, one of the last Egyptian sovereigns of the ptolomeic dynasty, is envisioned as a mythic figure, surrounded by intrigues and mystery. her mysterious death was caused, according to history, by a snake bite. This article shows some instances of great Cleopatra's life and the state of the art on snake venoms. Even at the present time, snake bites are a public health problem in Asia, Africa, Central and South America, causing more than 25,000 deaths every year. Most snake venoms have a protein structure and cause neurotoxic and hemolytic effects, altering coagulation and fibrinolysis. The mortality due to snake bites fluctuates between 1 and 22%. Specific treatment includes the use of specific antiserums with highly purified components.

  16. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of coagulation factor IX-binding protein from habu snake venom at pH 6.5 and 4.6

    SciTech Connect

    Suzuki, Nobuhiro; Shikamoto, Yasuo; Fujimoto, Zui; Morita, Takashi; Mizuno, Hiroshi

    2005-01-01

    Crystals of habu coagulation factor IX-binding protein have been obtained at pH 6.5 and 4.6 and characterized by X-ray diffraction. Coagulation factor IX-binding protein isolated from Trimeresurus flavoviridis (IX-bp) is a C-type lectin-like protein. It is an anticoagulant protein consisting of homologous subunits A and B. The subunits both contain a Ca{sup 2+}-binding site with differing affinity (K{sub d} values of 14 and 130 µM at pH 7.5). These binding characteristics are pH-dependent; under acidic conditions, the affinity of the low-affinity site was reduced considerably. In order to identify which site has high affinity and also to investigate the Ca{sup 2+}-releasing mechanism, IX-bp was crystallized at pH 6.5 and 4.6. The crystals at pH 6.5 and 4.6 diffracted to 1.72 and 2.29 Å resolution, respectively; the former crystals belong to the monoclinic space group P2{sub 1}, with unit-cell parameters a = 60.7, b = 63.5, c = 66.9 Å, β = 117.0°, while the latter belong to the monoclinic space group C2, with a = 134.1, b = 37.8, c = 55.8 Å, β = 110.4°.

  17. Identification of snake bradykinin-potentiating peptides (BPPs)-simile sequences in rat brain--Potential BPP-like precursor protein?

    PubMed

    Campeiro, Joana D'Arc; Neshich, Izabella P; Sant'Anna, Osvaldo A; Lopes, Robson; Ianzer, Danielle; Assakura, Marina T; Neshich, Goran; Hayashi, Mirian A F

    2015-08-01

    Bradykinin-potentiating peptides (BPPs) from the South American pit viper snake venom were the first natural inhibitors of the human angiotensin I-converting enzyme (ACE) described. The pioneer characterization of the BPPs precursor from the snake venom glands by our group showed for the first time the presence of the C-type natriuretic peptide (CNP) in this same viper precursor protein. The confirmation of the BPP/CNP expression in snake brain regions correlated with neuroendocrine functions stimulated us to pursue the physiological correlates of these vasoactive peptides in mammals. Notably, several snake toxins were shown to have endogenous physiological correlates in mammals. In the present work, we expressed in bacteria the BPPs domain of the snake venom gland precursor protein, and this purified recombinant protein was used to raise specific polyclonal anti-BPPs antibodies. The correspondent single protein band immune-recognized in adult rat brain cytosol was isolated by 2D-SDS/PAGE and/or HPLC, before characterization by MS fingerprint analysis, which identified this protein as superoxide dismutase (SOD, EC 1.15.1.1), a classically known enzyme with antioxidant activity and important roles in the blood pressure modulation. In silico analysis showed the exposition of the BPP-like peptide sequences on the surface of the 3D structure of rat SOD. These peptides were chemically synthesized to show the BPP-like biological activities in ex vivo and in vivo pharmacological bioassays. Taken together, our data suggest that SOD protein have the potential to be a source for putative BPP-like bioactive peptides, which once released may contribute to the blood pressure control in mammals.

  18. ACUTE KIDNEY INJURY CAUSED BY Crotalus AND Bothrops SNAKE VENOM: A REVIEW OF EPIDEMIOLOGY, CLINICAL MANIFESTATIONS AND TREATMENT

    PubMed Central

    Albuquerque, Polianna L.M.M.; Jacinto, Camilla N.; Silva, Geraldo B.; Lima, Juliana B.; Veras, Maria do Socorro B.; Daher, Elizabeth F.

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Ophidic accidents are an important public health problem due to their incidence, morbidity and mortality. An increasing number of cases have been registered in Brazil in the last few years. Several studies point to the importance of knowing the clinical complications and adequate approach in these accidents. However, knowledge about the risk factors is not enough and there are an increasing number of deaths due to these accidents in Brazil. In this context, acute kidney injury (AKI) appears as one of the main causes of death and consequences for these victims, which are mainly young males working in rural areas. Snakes of the Bothrops and Crotalus genera are the main responsible for renal involvement in ophidic accidents in South America. The present study is a literature review of AKI caused by Bothrops and Crotalus snake venom regarding diverse characteristics, emphasizing the most appropriate therapeutic approach for these cases. Recent studies have been carried out searching for complementary therapies for the treatment of ophidic accidents, including the use of lipoic acid, simvastatin and allopurinol. Some plants, such as Apocynaceae, Lamiaceae and Rubiaceae seem to have a beneficial role in the treatment of this type of envenomation. Future studies will certainly find new therapeutic measures for ophidic accidents. PMID:24037282

  19. Acute kidney injury caused by Crotalus and Bothrops snake venom: a review of epidemiology, clinical manifestations and treatment.

    PubMed

    Albuquerque, Polianna L M M; Jacinto, Camilla N; Silva Junior, Geraldo B; Lima, Juliana B; Veras, Maria do Socorro B; Daher, Elizabeth F

    2013-01-01

    Ophidic accidents are an important public health problem due to their incidence, morbidity and mortality. An increasing number of cases have been registered in Brazil in the last few years. Several studies point to the importance of knowing the clinical complications and adequate approach in these accidents. However, knowledge about the risk factors is not enough and there are an increasing number of deaths due to these accidents in Brazil. In this context, acute kidney injury (AKI) appears as one of the main causes of death and consequences for these victims, which are mainly young males working in rural areas. Snakes of the Bothrops and Crotalus genera are the main responsible for renal involvement in ophidic accidents in South America. The present study is a literature review of AKI caused by Bothrops and Crotalus snake venom regarding diverse characteristics, emphasizing the most appropriate therapeutic approach for these cases. Recent studies have been carried out searching for complementary therapies for the treatment of ophidic accidents, including the use of lipoic acid, simvastatin and allopurinol. Some plants, such as Apocynaceae, Lamiaceae and Rubiaceae seem to have a beneficial role in the treatment of this type of envenomation. Future studies will certainly find new therapeutic measures for ophidic accidents.

  20. Differential Properties of Venom Peptides and Proteins in Solitary vs. Social Hunting Wasps

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Si Hyeock; Baek, Ji Hyeong; Yoon, Kyungjae Andrew

    2016-01-01

    The primary functions of venoms from solitary and social wasps are different. Whereas most solitary wasps sting their prey to paralyze and preserve it, without killing, as the provisions for their progeny, social wasps usually sting to defend their colonies from vertebrate predators. Such distinctive venom properties of solitary and social wasps suggest that the main venom components are likely to be different depending on the wasps’ sociality. The present paper reviews venom components and properties of the Aculeata hunting wasps, with a particular emphasis on the comparative aspects of venom compositions and properties between solitary and social wasps. Common components in both solitary and social wasp venoms include hyaluronidase, phospholipase A2, metalloendopeptidase, etc. Although it has been expected that more diverse bioactive components with the functions of prey inactivation and physiology manipulation are present in solitary wasps, available studies on venom compositions of solitary wasps are simply too scarce to generalize this notion. Nevertheless, some neurotoxic peptides (e.g., pompilidotoxin and dendrotoxin-like peptide) and proteins (e.g., insulin-like peptide binding protein) appear to be specific to solitary wasp venom. In contrast, several proteins, such as venom allergen 5 protein, venom acid phosphatase, and various phospholipases, appear to be relatively more specific to social wasp venom. Finally, putative functions of main venom components and their application are also discussed. PMID:26805885

  1. Differential Properties of Venom Peptides and Proteins in Solitary vs. Social Hunting Wasps.

    PubMed

    Lee, Si Hyeock; Baek, Ji Hyeong; Yoon, Kyungjae Andrew

    2016-01-22

    The primary functions of venoms from solitary and social wasps are different. Whereas most solitary wasps sting their prey to paralyze and preserve it, without killing, as the provisions for their progeny, social wasps usually sting to defend their colonies from vertebrate predators. Such distinctive venom properties of solitary and social wasps suggest that the main venom components are likely to be different depending on the wasps' sociality. The present paper reviews venom components and properties of the Aculeata hunting wasps, with a particular emphasis on the comparative aspects of venom compositions and properties between solitary and social wasps. Common components in both solitary and social wasp venoms include hyaluronidase, phospholipase A2, metalloendopeptidase, etc. Although it has been expected that more diverse bioactive components with the functions of prey inactivation and physiology manipulation are present in solitary wasps, available studies on venom compositions of solitary wasps are simply too scarce to generalize this notion. Nevertheless, some neurotoxic peptides (e.g., pompilidotoxin and dendrotoxin-like peptide) and proteins (e.g., insulin-like peptide binding protein) appear to be specific to solitary wasp venom. In contrast, several proteins, such as venom allergen 5 protein, venom acid phosphatase, and various phospholipases, appear to be relatively more specific to social wasp venom. Finally, putative functions of main venom components and their application are also discussed.

  2. Analysis of Protein Composition and Bioactivity of Neoponera villosa Venom (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)

    PubMed Central

    Pessoa, Wallace Felipe Blohem; Silva, Ludimilla Carvalho Cerqueira; de Oliveira Dias, Leila; Delabie, Jacques Hubert Charles; Costa, Helena; Romano, Carla Cristina

    2016-01-01

    Ants cause a series of accidents involving humans. Such accidents generate different reactions in the body, ranging from a mild irritation at the bite site to anaphylactic shock, and these reactions depend on the mechanism of action of the venom. The study of animal venom is a science known as venomics. Through venomics, the composition of the venom of several ant species has already been characterized and their biological activities described. Thus, the aim of this study was to evaluate the protein composition and biological activities (hemolytic and immunostimulatory) of the venom of Neoponera villosa (N. villosa), an ant widely distributed in South America. The protein composition was evaluated by proteomic techniques, such as two-dimensional electrophoresis. To assess the biological activity, hemolysis assay was carried out and cytokines were quantified after exposure of macrophages to the venom. The venom of N. villosa has a profile composed of 145 proteins, including structural and metabolic components (e.g., tubulin and ATPase), allergenic and immunomodulatory proteins (arginine kinase and heat shock proteins (HSPs)), protective proteins of venom (superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase) and tissue degradation proteins (hyaluronidase and phospholipase A2). The venom was able to induce hemolysis in human erythrocytes and also induced release of both pro-inflammatory cytokines, as the anti-inflammatory cytokine release by murine macrophages. These results allow better understanding of the composition and complexity of N. villosa venom in the human body, as well as the possible mechanisms of action after the bite. PMID:27110765

  3. Photobiomodulation Protects and Promotes Differentiation of C2C12 Myoblast Cells Exposed to Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    da Silva, Aline; Vieira, Rodolfo Paula; Mesquita-Ferrari, Raquel Agnelli; Cogo, José Carlos; Zamuner, Stella Regina

    2016-01-01

    Background Snakebites is a neglected disease and in Brazil is considered a serious health problem, with the majority of the snakebites caused by the genus Bothrops. Antivenom therapy and other first-aid treatments do not reverse local myonecrose which is the main sequel caused by the envenomation. Several studies have shown the effectiveness of low level laser (LLL) therapy in reducing local myonecrosis induced by Bothropic venoms, however the mechanism involved in this effect is unknown. In this in vitro study, we aimed to analyze the effect of LLL irradiation against cytotoxicity induced by Bothrops jararacussu venom on myoblast C2C12 cells. Methodology C2C12 were utilized as a model target and were incubated with B. jararacussu venom (12.5 μg/mL) and immediately irradiated with LLL at wavelength of red 685 nm or infrared 830 nm with energy density of 2.0, 4.6 and 7.0 J/cm2. Effects of LLL on cellular responses of venom-induced cytotoxicity were examined, including cell viability, measurement of cell damage and intra and extracellular ATP levels, expression of myogenic regulatory factors, as well as cellular differentiation. Results In non-irradiated cells, the venom caused a decrease in cell viability and a massive release of LDH and CK levels indicating myonecrosis. Infrared and red laser at all energy densities were able to considerably decrease venom-induced cytotoxicity. Laser irradiation induced myoblasts to differentiate into myotubes and this effect was accompanied by up regulation of MyoD and specially myogenin. Moreover, LLL was able to reduce the extracellular while increased the intracellular ATP content after venom exposure. In addition, no difference in the intensity of cytotoxicity was shown by non-irradiated and irradiated venom. Conclusion LLL irradiation caused a protective effect on C2C12 cells against the cytotoxicity caused by B. jararacussu venom and promotes differentiation of these cells by up regulation of myogenic factors. A modulatory

  4. Antibacterial activity of crotalid venoms against oral snake flora and other clinical bacteria.

    PubMed

    Talan, D A; Citron, D M; Overturf, G D; Singer, B; Froman, P; Goldstein, E J

    1991-07-01

    Despite heavy oral and fang contamination of crotalid species with a wide variety of potentially pathogenic bacteria, crotalid envenomation is associated with a low incidence of bacterial infection. Minimal inhibitory and bactericidal concentrations of venoms from three crotalid species were determined against six aerobic and eight anaerobic reference and oral crotalid microorganisms. All anaerobic isolates were resistant to greater than 20,480 micrograms/ml, whereas variable activity (range, 5-20,480 micrograms/ml) was observed for aerobic strains. Further studies against other aerobic clinical isolates demonstrated that venom had the greatest activity (MIC, less than or equal to 80 micrograms/ml) against staphylococci, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Enterobacter, Citrobacter, Proteus, and Morganella species. Inhibitory activity was lost with prolonged incubation for many gram-negative species. Crotalid venoms are broadly active against aerobic gram-negative and -positive bacteria. This activity may play a role in the low incidence of infection after envenomation injuries.

  5. L-type voltage-dependent calcium channel is involved in the snake venom group IA secretory phospholipase A2-induced neuronal apoptosis.

    PubMed

    Yagami, Tatsurou; Yamamoto, Yasuhiro; Kohma, Hiromi; Nakamura, Tsutomu; Takasu, Nobuo; Okamura, Noboru

    2013-03-01

    Snake venom group IA secretory phospholipase A2 (sPLA2-IA) is known as a neurotoxin. Snake venom sPLA2s are neurotoxic in vivo and in vitro, causing synergistic neurotoxicity to cortical cultures when applied with toxic concentrations of glutamate. However, it has not yet been cleared sufficiently how sPLA2-IA exerts neurotoxicity. Here, we found sPLA2-IA induced neuronal cell death in a concentration-dependent manner. This death was a delayed response requiring a latent time for 6h. sPLA2-IA-induced neuronal cell death was accompanied with apoptotic blebbing, condensed chromatin, and fragmented DNA, exhibiting apoptotic features. NMDA receptor blockers suppressed the neurotoxicity of sPLA2-IA, but an AMPA receptor blocker did not. Interestingly, L-type voltage-dependent Ca(2+) channel (L-VDCC) blocker significantly protected neurons from the sPLA2-IA-induced apoptosis. On the other hand, neither N-VDCC blockers nor P/Q-VDCC blocker did. In conclusion, we demonstrated that sPLA2-IA induced neuronal cell death via apoptosis. Furthermore, the present study suggests that not only NMDA receptor but also L-VDCC contributed to the neurotoxicity of snake venom sPLA2-IA.

  6. Biochemical Characterization, Action on Macrophages, and Superoxide Anion Production of Four Basic Phospholipases A2 from Panamanian Bothrops asper Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Rueda, Aristides Quintero; Rodríguez, Isela González; Arantes, Eliane C.; Setúbal, Sulamita S.; Calderon, Leonardo de A.; Zuliani, Juliana P.; Stábeli, Rodrigo G.; Soares, Andreimar M.

    2013-01-01

    Bothrops asper (Squamata: Viperidae) is the most important venomous snake in Central America, being responsible for the majority of snakebite accidents. Four basic PLA2s (pMTX-I to -IV) were purified from crude venom by a single-step chromatography using a CM-Sepharose ion-exchange column (1.5 × 15 cm). Analysis of the N-terminal sequence demonstrated that pMTX-I and III belong to the catalytically active Asp49 phospholipase A2 subclass, whereas pMTX-II and IV belong to the enzymatically inactive Lys49 PLA2s-like subclass. The PLA2s isolated from Panama Bothrops asper venom (pMTX-I, II, III, and IV) are able to induce myotoxic activity, inflammatory reaction mainly leukocyte migration to the muscle, and induce J774A.1 macrophages activation to start phagocytic activity and superoxide production. PMID:23509779

  7. Molecular barcoding of venomous snakes and species-specific multiplex PCR assay to identify snake groups for which antivenom is available in Thailand.

    PubMed

    Supikamolseni, A; Ngaoburanawit, N; Sumontha, M; Chanhome, L; Suntrarachun, S; Peyachoknagul, S; Srikulnath, K

    2015-10-30

    DNA barcodes of mitochondrial COI and Cytb genes were constructed from 54 specimens of 16 species for species identification. Intra- and interspecific sequence divergence of the COI gene (10 times) was greater than that of the Cytb gene (4 times), which suggests that the former gene may be a better marker than the latter for species delimitation in snakes. The COI barcode cut-off scores differed by more than 3% between most species, and the minimum interspecific divergence was greater than the maximum intraspecific divergence. Clustering analysis indicated that most species fell into monophyletic clades. These results suggest that these species could be reliably differentiated using COI DNA barcodes. Moreover, a novel species-specific multiplex PCR assay was developed to distinguish between Naja spp, Ophiophagus hannah, Trimeresurus spp, Hydrophiinae, Daboia siamensis, Bungarus fasciatus, and Calloselasma rhodostoma. Antivenom for these species is produced and kept by the Thai Red Cross for clinical use. Our novel PCR assay could easily be applied to venom and saliva samples and could be used effectively for the rapid and accurate identification of species during forensic work, conservation study, and medical research.

  8. Inhibitory Effects of Hydroethanolic Leaf Extracts of Kalanchoe brasiliensis and Kalanchoe pinnata (Crassulaceae) against Local Effects Induced by Bothrops jararaca Snake Venom.

    PubMed

    Fernandes, Júlia Morais; Félix-Silva, Juliana; da Cunha, Lorena Medeiros; Gomes, Jacyra Antunes Dos Santos; Siqueira, Emerson Michell da Silva; Gimenes, Luisa Possamai; Lopes, Norberto Peporine; Soares, Luiz Alberto Lira; Fernandes-Pedrosa, Matheus de Freitas; Zucolotto, Silvana Maria

    2016-01-01

    The species Kalanchoe brasiliensis and Kalanchoe pinnata, both known popularly as "Saião," are used interchangeably in traditional medicine for their antiophidic properties. Studies evaluating the anti-venom activity of these species are scarce. This study aims to characterize the chemical constituents and evaluate the inhibitory effects of hydroethanolic leaf extracts of K. brasiliensis and K. pinnata against local effects induced by Bothrops jararaca snake venom. Thin Layer Chromatography (TLC) and High Performance Liquid Chromatography coupled with Diode Array Detection and Electrospray Mass Spectrometry (HPLC-DAD-MS/MS) were performed for characterization of chemical markers of the extracts from these species. For antiophidic activity evaluation, B. jararaca venom-induced paw edema and skin hemorrhage in mice were evaluated. In both models, hydroethanolic extracts (125-500 mg/kg) were administered intraperitoneally in different protocols. Inhibition of phospholipase enzymatic activity of B. jararaca was evaluated. The HPLC-DAD-MS/MS chromatographic profile of extracts showed some particularities in the chemical profile of the two species. K. brasileinsis exhibited major peaks that have UV spectra similar to flavonoid glycosides derived from patuletin and eupafolin, while K. pinnata showed UV spectra similar to flavonoids glycosides derived from quercetin and kaempferol. Both extracts significantly reduced the hemorrhagic activity of B. jararaca venom in pre-treatment protocol, reaching about 40% of inhibition, while only K. pinnata was active in post-treatment protocol (about 30% of inhibition). In the antiedematogenic activity, only K. pinnata was active, inhibiting about 66% and 30% in pre and post-treatment protocols, respectively. Both extracts inhibited phospholipase activity; however, K. pinnata was more active. In conclusion, the results indicate the potential antiophidic activity of Kalanchoe species against local effects induced by B. jararaca snake

  9. Inhibitory Effects of Hydroethanolic Leaf Extracts of Kalanchoe brasiliensis and Kalanchoe pinnata (Crassulaceae) against Local Effects Induced by Bothrops jararaca Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Fernandes, Júlia Morais; Félix-Silva, Juliana; da Cunha, Lorena Medeiros; Gomes, Jacyra Antunes dos Santos; Siqueira, Emerson Michell da Silva; Gimenes, Luisa Possamai; Lopes, Norberto Peporine; Soares, Luiz Alberto Lira; Fernandes-Pedrosa, Matheus de Freitas; Zucolotto, Silvana Maria

    2016-01-01

    The species Kalanchoe brasiliensis and Kalanchoe pinnata, both known popularly as “Saião,” are used interchangeably in traditional medicine for their antiophidic properties. Studies evaluating the anti-venom activity of these species are scarce. This study aims to characterize the chemical constituents and evaluate the inhibitory effects of hydroethanolic leaf extracts of K. brasiliensis and K. pinnata against local effects induced by Bothrops jararaca snake venom. Thin Layer Chromatography (TLC) and High Performance Liquid Chromatography coupled with Diode Array Detection and Electrospray Mass Spectrometry (HPLC-DAD-MS/MS) were performed for characterization of chemical markers of the extracts from these species. For antiophidic activity evaluation, B. jararaca venom-induced paw edema and skin hemorrhage in mice were evaluated. In both models, hydroethanolic extracts (125–500 mg/kg) were administered intraperitoneally in different protocols. Inhibition of phospholipase enzymatic activity of B. jararaca was evaluated. The HPLC-DAD-MS/MS chromatographic profile of extracts showed some particularities in the chemical profile of the two species. K. brasileinsis exhibited major peaks that have UV spectra similar to flavonoid glycosides derived from patuletin and eupafolin, while K. pinnata showed UV spectra similar to flavonoids glycosides derived from quercetin and kaempferol. Both extracts significantly reduced the hemorrhagic activity of B. jararaca venom in pre-treatment protocol, reaching about 40% of inhibition, while only K. pinnata was active in post-treatment protocol (about 30% of inhibition). In the antiedematogenic activity, only K. pinnata was active, inhibiting about 66% and 30% in pre and post-treatment protocols, respectively. Both extracts inhibited phospholipase activity; however, K. pinnata was more active. In conclusion, the results indicate the potential antiophidic activity of Kalanchoe species against local effects induced by B. jararaca

  10. Proteomic Analyses of Agkistrodon contortrix contortrix Venom Using 2D Electrophoresis and MS Techniques.

    PubMed

    Bocian, Aleksandra; Urbanik, Małgorzata; Hus, Konrad; Łyskowski, Andrzej; Petrilla, Vladimír; Andrejčáková, Zuzana; Petrillová, Monika; Legáth, Jaroslav

    2016-12-13

    Snake venom is a complex mixture of proteins and peptides which in the Viperidae is mainly hemotoxic. The diversity of these components causes the venom to be an extremely interesting object of study. Discovered components can be used in search for new pharmaceuticals used primarily in the treatment of diseases of the cardiovascular system. In order to determine the protein composition of the southern copperhead venom, we have used high resolution two dimensional electrophoresis and MALDI ToF/ToF MS-based identification. We have identified 10 groups of proteins present in the venom, of which phospholipase A₂ and metalloprotease and serine proteases constitute the largest groups. For the first time presence of 5'-nucleotidase in venom was found in this group of snakes. Three peptides present in the venom were also identified. Two of them as bradykinin-potentiating agents and one as an inhibitor.

  11. Proteomic Analyses of Agkistrodon contortrix contortrix Venom Using 2D Electrophoresis and MS Techniques

    PubMed Central

    Bocian, Aleksandra; Urbanik, Małgorzata; Hus, Konrad; Łyskowski, Andrzej; Petrilla, Vladimír; Andrejčáková, Zuzana; Petrillová, Monika; Legáth, Jaroslav

    2016-01-01

    Snake venom is a complex mixture of proteins and peptides which in the Viperidae is mainly hemotoxic. The diversity of these components causes the venom to be an extremely interesting object of study. Discovered components can be used in search for new pharmaceuticals used primarily in the treatment of diseases of the cardiovascular system. In order to determine the protein composition of the southern copperhead venom, we have used high resolution two dimensional electrophoresis and MALDI ToF/ToF MS-based identification. We have identified 10 groups of proteins present in the venom, of which phospholipase A2 and metalloprotease and serine proteases constitute the largest groups. For the first time presence of 5′-nucleotidase in venom was found in this group of snakes. Three peptides present in the venom were also identified. Two of them as bradykinin-potentiating agents and one as an inhibitor. PMID:27983581

  12. Melatonin inhibits snake venom and antivenom induced oxidative stress and augments treatment efficacy.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Rachana D; Katkar, Gajanan D; Sundaram, Mahalingam S; Swethakumar, Basavarajaiah; Girish, Kesturu S; Kemparaju, Kempaiah

    2017-05-01

    Snakebite is a neglected health hazard. Its patho-physiology has largely been focused on systemic and local toxicities; whereas, venom and antivenom induced oxidative stress has long been ignored. Antivenom therapy although neutralizes venom lethality and saves many lives, remains ineffective against oxidative stress. This prompted us to complement antivenom with an antioxidant molecule melatonin that would protect against oxidative stress and increase the efficacy of the existing snakebite therapy. Here we show that D. russelli and E. carinatus venoms induce strong oxidative stress that persists even after antivenom administration in mice model. Additionally, antivenoms also induce oxidative stress. Polyvalent antivenom induce more oxidative stress than monovalent antivenom. Strikingly, antivenom and melatonin together not only inhibit venom and antivenom induced oxidative stress but also significantly reduce the neutralizing antivenom dose. This study provides a therapeutic potential for enhancing the existing snakebite therapy. The combined treatment of antivenom+melatonin would prevent the upsurge of oxidative stress as well as minimize the antivenom load. Thus the investigation offers immense scope for physicians and toxinologists to reinvestigate, design new strategies and think beyond the conventional mode of antivenom therapy.

  13. Sulfated Galactan from Palisada flagellifera Inhibits Toxic Effects of Lachesis muta Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    da Silva, Ana Cláudia Rodrigues; Ferreira, Luciana Garcia; Duarte, Maria Eugênia Rabello; Noseda, Miguel Daniel; Sanchez, Eladio Flores; Fuly, André Lopes

    2015-01-01

    In Brazil, snakebites are a public health problem and accidents caused by Lachesis muta have the highest mortality index. Envenomation by L. muta is characterized by systemic (hypotension, bleeding and renal failure) and local effects (necrosis, pain and edema). The treatment to reverse the evolution of all the toxic effects is performed by injection of antivenom. However, such therapy does not effectively neutralize tissue damage or any other local effect, since in most cases victims delay seeking appropriate medical care. In this way, alternative therapies are in demand, and molecules from natural sources have been exhaustively tested. In this paper, we analyzed the inhibitory effect of a sulfated galactan obtained from the red seaweed Palisada flagellifera against some toxic activities of L. muta venom. Incubation of sulfated galactan with venom resulted in inhibition of hemolysis, coagulation, proteolysis, edema and hemorrhage. Neutralization of hemorrhage was also observed when the galactan was administered after or before the venom injection; thus mimicking a real in vivo situation. Moreover, the galactan blocked the edema caused by a phospholipase A2 isolated from the same venom. Therefore, the galactan from P. flagellifera may represent a promising tool to treat envenomation by L. muta as a coadjuvant for the conventional antivenom. PMID:26110897

  14. Suppression of severe lesions, myonecrosis and hemorrhage, caused by Protobothrops flavoviridis venom with its serum proteins.

    PubMed

    Chijiwa, Takahito; So, Shuhei; Hattori, Shosaku; Yoshida, Aichi; Oda-Ueda, Naoko; Ohno, Motonori

    2013-12-15

    Protobothrops flavoviridis serum proteins precipitated with ammonium sulfate were chromatographed on a DEAE-Toyopearl 650M column at pH 7.5 with stepwise increase or with linear gradient of NaCl concentration. Peaks 3 and 4 serum proteins, obtained by linear gradient elution and named Fr(de3) and Fr(de4), contained Habu serum factors (HSF) and phospholipase A2 (PLA2) inhibitors (PfPLI), respectively. The serum proteins eluted at 0.2 M NaCl by stepwise elution, named Fr(0.2NaCl), effectively suppressed myonecrosis and hemorrhage caused by P. flavoviridis venom in rat or mouse thigh muscles. The Fr(0.2NaCl) were fractionated by HPLC and the fractions, after SDS-PAGE, underwent far-western blot analysis with PLA2 ([Asp(49)]PLA2) and BPI ([Lys(49)]PLA2) as the probes. Four PfPLIs, namely, PfαPLI-A, PfαPLI-B, PfγPLI-A and PfγPLI-B, were identified together with their selective binding specificities to PLA2 species. In addition, a new 9 kDa protein, which is specifically bound to BPI, was found. Suppression of P. flavoviridis venom-induced severe lesions, such as myonecrosis, hemorrhage and edema, with its serum proteins was histopathologically observed in the present work for the first time. The cooperative use of P. flavoviridis antivenom and its serum proteins as medication for P. flavoviridis snake bites is discussed.

  15. Neuromuscular effects of a toxic phospholipase A2 and its nontoxic homologue from the venom of the sea snake, Laticauda colubrina.

    PubMed

    Rowan, E G; Harvey, A L; Takasaki, C; Tamiya, N

    1989-01-01

    A single chain phospholipase A2 (LcPLA-II) and a homologous protein lacking enzymatic activity (LcPLH-I) isolated from the venom of the Solomon Island sea snake (Laticauda colubrina) were tested for effects on neuromuscular transmission and muscle contractility on chick biventer cervicis and mouse hemidiaphragm preparations. LcPLA-II (7.5 nM-1.5 microM) blocked indirectly elicited muscle contractions of both preparations. Low concentrations of LcPLA-II caused little change in sensitivity to acetylcholine, carbachol and KCl. The homologue LcPLH-I (375 nM-1.5 microM) reduced the responses of the biventer cervicis preparation to indirect stimulation and abolished responses to acetylcholine and carbachol, but it did not block KCl responses. These effects were due to minor contamination by a post-junctional neurotoxin. LcPLH-I (375 nM-750 nM) had no effect on indirectly stimulated hemidiaphragm preparations. It is concluded that LcPLA-II blocks neuromuscular transmission by a prejunctional action, and that the homologue lacking phospholipase A2 activity also lacks neuromuscular activity.

  16. Amino acid sequences of two novel long-chain neurotoxins from the venom of the sea snake Laticauda colubrina.

    PubMed

    Kim, H S; Tamiya, N

    1982-11-01

    From the venom of a population of the sea snake Laticauda colubrina from the Solomon Islands, a neurotoxic component, Laticauda colubrina a (toxin Lc a), was isolated in 16.6% (A280) yield. Similarly, from the venom of a population of L. colubrina from the Philippines, a neurotoxic component, Laticauda colubrina b (toxin Lc b), was obtained in 10.0% (A280) yield. The LD50 values of these toxins were 0.12 microgram/g body wt. on intramuscular injection in mice. Toxins Lc a and Lc b were each composed of molecules containing 69 amino acid residues with eight half-cystine residues. The complete amino acid sequences of these two toxins were elucidated. Toxins Lc a and Lc b are different from each other at five positions of their sequences, namely at positions 31 (Phe/Ser), 32 (Leu/Ile), 33 (Lys/Arg), 50 (Pro/Arg) and 53 (Asp/His) (residues in parentheses give the residues in toxins Lc a and Lc b respectively). Toxins Lc a and Lc b have a novel structure in that they have only four disulphide bridges, although the whole amino acid sequences are homologous to those of other known long-chain neurotoxins. It is remarkable that toxins Lc a and Lc b are not coexistent at the detection error of 6% of the other toxin. Populations of Laticauda colubrina from the Solomon Islands and from the Philippines have either toxin Lc a or toxin Lc b and not both of them.

  17. Toxins not neutralized by brown snake antivenom

    SciTech Connect

    Judge, Roopwant K.; Henry, Peter J.; Mirtschin, Peter; Jelinek, George; Wilce, Jacqueline A. . E-mail: Jackie.Wilce@med.monash.edu.au

    2006-06-01

    The Australian snakes of the genus Pseudonaja (dugite, gwardar and common brown) account for the majority of snake bite related deaths in Australia. Without antivenom treatment, the risk of mortality is significant. There is an accumulating body of evidence to suggest that the efficacy of the antivenom is limited. The current study investigates the protein constituents recognized by the antivenom using 2-DE, immuno-blot techniques and rat tracheal organ bath assays. The 2-DE profiles for all three snake venoms were similar, with major species visualized at 78-132 kDa, 32-45 kDa and 6-15 kDa. Proteins characterized by LC-MS/MS revealed a coagulant toxin ({approx}42 kDa) and coagulant peptide ({approx}6 kDa), as well as two PLA{sub 2} ({approx}14 kDa). Peptides isolated from {approx}78 kDa and 15-32 kDa protein components showed no similarity to known protein sequences. Protein recognition by the antivenom occurred predominantly for the higher molecular weight components with little recognition of 6-32 kDa MW species. The ability of antivenom to neutralize venom activity was also investigated using rat tracheal organ bath assays. The venoms of Pseudonaja affinis affinis and Pseudonaja nuchalis incited a sustained, significant contraction of the trachea. These contractions were attributed to PLA{sub 2} enzymatic activity as pre-treatment with the PLA{sub 2} inhibitor 4-BPB attenuated the venom-induced contractions. The venom of Pseudonaja textilis incited tracheal contractility through a non-PLA{sub 2} enzymatic activity. Neither activity was attenuated by the antivenom treatment. These results represent the first proteomic investigation of the venoms from the snakes of the genus Pseudonaja, revealing a possible limitation of the brown snake antivenom in binding to the low MW protein components.

  18. Molecular cloning of a hyaluronidase from Bothrops pauloensis venom gland

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Hyaluronate is one of the major components of extracellular matrix from vertebrates whose breakdown is catalyzed by the enzyme hyaluronidase. These enzymes are widely described in snake venoms, in which they facilitate the spreading of the main toxins in the victim’s body during the envenoming. Snake venoms also present some variants (hyaluronidases-like substances) that are probably originated by alternative splicing, even though their relevance in envenomation is still under investigation. Hyaluronidases-like proteins have not yet been purified from any snake venom, but the cDNA that encodes these toxins was already identified in snake venom glands by transcriptomic analysis. Herein, we report the cloning and in silico analysis of the first hyaluronidase-like proteins from a Brazilian snake venom. Methods The cDNA sequence of hyaluronidase was cloned from the transcriptome of Bothrops pauloensis venom glands. This sequence was submitted to multiple alignment with other related sequences by ClustalW. A phylogenetic analysis was performed using MEGA 4 software by the neighbor joining (NJ) method. Results The cDNA from Bothrops pauloensis venom gland that corresponds to hyaluronidase comprises 1175 bp and codifies a protein containing 194 amino acid residues. The sequence, denominated BpHyase, was identified as hyaluronidase-like since it shows high sequence identities (above 83%) with other described snake venom hyaluronidase-like sequences. Hyaluronidases-like proteins are thought to be products of alternative splicing implicated in deletions of central amino acids, including the catalytic residues. Structure-based sequence alignment of BpHyase to human hyaluronidase hHyal-1 demonstrates a loss of some key secondary structures. The phylogenetic analysis indicates an independent evolution of BpHyal when compared to other hyaluronidases. However, these toxins might share a common ancestor, thus suggesting a broad hyaluronidase-like distribution among

  19. Effect of Drugs on the Lethality in Mice of the Venoms and Neurotoxins from Sundry Snakes

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1990-07-10

    maximal when the drugs were administered immediately after the irjection of venom or toxin. Nifedipine. piracetam , reserpine, and vesamicol analog 72...California, Santa Barbara, CA, U.S.A. Chloroquine, chlorpromazine, 5 dexamethasone, diltiazem, piracetam , primaquine, and quinacrine were dissolved in...nifedipine had no overt effect on 20 mice observed for 24 hr. , , I I I I I i ii i l I ! ! ! !0 Piracerwn Piracetam failed to protect mice from the

  20. Comparisons of Protein and Peptide Complexity in Poneroid and Formicoid Ant Venoms.

    PubMed

    Aili, Samira R; Touchard, Axel; Koh, Jennifer M S; Dejean, Alain; Orivel, Jérôme; Padula, Matthew P; Escoubas, Pierre; Nicholson, Graham M

    2016-09-02

    Animal venom peptides are currently being developed as novel drugs and bioinsecticides. Because ants use venoms for defense and predation, venomous ants represent an untapped source of potential bioactive toxins. This study compared the protein and peptide components of the poneroid ants Neoponera commutata, Neoponera apicalis, and Odontomachus hastatus and the formicoid ants Ectatomma tuberculatum, Ectatomma brunneum, and Myrmecia gulosa. 1D and 2D PAGE revealed venom proteins in the mass range <10 to >250 kDa. NanoLC-ESI-QTOF MS/MS analysis of tryptic peptides revealed the presence of common venom proteins and also many undescribed proteins. RP-HPLC separation followed by MALDI-TOF MS of the venom peptides also revealed considerable heterogeneity. It was found that the venoms contained between 144 and 1032 peptides with 5-95% of peptides in the ranges 1-4 and 1-8 kDa for poneroid and formicoid ants, respectively. By employing the reducing MALDI matrix 1,5-diaminonapthalene, up to 28 disulfide-bonded peptides were also identified in each of the venoms. In particular, the mass range of peptides from poneroid ants is lower than peptides from other venoms, indicating possible novel structures and pharmacologies. These results indicate that ant venoms represent an enormous, untapped source of novel therapeutic and bioinsecticide leads.

  1. Variation in venom yield and protein concentration of the centipedes Scolopendra polymorpha and Scolopendra subspinipes.

    PubMed

    Cooper, Allen M; Fox, Gerad A; Nelsen, David R; Hayes, William K

    2014-05-01

    Venom generally comprises a complex mixture of compounds representing a non-trivial metabolic expense. Accordingly, natural selection should fine-tune the amount of venom carried within an animal's venom gland(s). The venom supply of scolopendromorph centipedes likely influences their venom use and has implications for the severity of human envenomations, yet we understand very little about their venom yields and the factors influencing them. We investigated how size, specifically body length, influenced volume yield and protein concentration of electrically extracted venom in Scolopendra polymorpha and Scolopendra subspinipes. We also examined additional potential influences on yield in S. polymorpha, including relative forcipule size, relative mass, geographic origin (Arizona vs. California), sex, time in captivity, and milking history. Volume yield was linearly related to body length, and S. subspinipes yielded a larger length-specific volume than S. polymorpha. Body length and protein concentration were uncorrelated. When considering multiple influences on volume yield in S. polymorpha, the most important factor was body length, but yield was also positively associated with relative forcipule length and relative body mass. S. polymorpha from California yielded a greater volume of venom with a higher protein concentration than conspecifics from Arizona, all else being equal. Previously milked animals yielded less venom with a lower protein concentration. For both species, approximately two-thirds of extractable venom was expressed in the first two pulses, with remaining pulses yielding declining amounts, but venom protein concentration did not vary across pulses. Further study is necessary to ascertain the ecological significance of the factors influencing venom yield and how availability may influence venom use.

  2. Identification of inhibitors of α2β1 integrin, members of C-lectin type proteins, in Echis sochureki venom

    SciTech Connect

    Jakubowski, Piotr; Calvete, Juan J.; Eble, Johannes A.; Lazarovici, Philip; Marcinkiewicz, Cezary

    2013-05-15

    Snake venom antagonists of α2β1 integrin have been identified as members of a C-lectin type family of proteins (CLP). In the present study, we characterized three new CLPs isolated from Echis sochureki venom, which interact with this integrin. These proteins were purified using a combination of gel filtration, ion exchange chromatography and reverse phase HPLC. Sochicetin-A and sochicetin-B potently inhibited adhesion of cells expressing α2β1 integrin and binding of isolated α2β1 ectodomain to collagen I, as well as bound to recombinant GST-α2A domain in ELISA, whereas activity of sochicetin-C in these assays was approximately two orders of magnitude lower. Structurally, sochicetin-B and sochicetin-C are typical heterodimeric αβ CLPs, whereas sochicetin-A exhibits a trimer of its subunits (αβ){sub 3} in the quaternary structure. Immobilized sochicetins supported adhesion of glioma cell lines, LN18 and LBC3, whereas in a soluble form they partially inhibited adhesion of these cells to collagen I. Glioma cells spread very poorly on sochicetin-A, showing no cytoskeleton rearrangement typical for adhesion to collagen I or fibronectin. Adhesion on CLP does not involve focal adhesion elements, such as vinculin. Sochicetin-A also inhibited collagen-induced platelet aggregation, similar to other CLPs' action on the blood coagulation system. - Highlights: • Isolation of three novel snake venom CLPs inhibiting α2β1 integrin • Reporting hexameric CLP, sochicetin-A with anti-collagen receptor activity • CLPs antagonize the interaction of glioma cells with collagen matrix. • Sochicetin-A does not support glioma cell spreading.

  3. Activation of J77A.1 macrophages by three phospholipases A2 isolated from Bothrops atrox snake venom.

    PubMed

    Furtado, Juliana L; Oliveira, George A; Pontes, Adriana S; Setúbal, Sulamita da S; Xavier, Caroline V; Lacouth-Silva, Fabianne; Lima, Beatriz F; Zaqueo, Kayena D; Kayano, Anderson M; Calderon, Leonardo A; Stábeli, Rodrigo G; Soares, Andreimar M; Zuliani, Juliana P

    2014-01-01

    In the present study, we investigated the in vitro effects of two basic myotoxic phospholipases A2 (PLA2), BaTX-I, a catalytically inactive Lys-49 variant, and BaTX-II, a catalytically active Asp-49, and of one acidic myotoxic PLA2, BaPLA2, a catalytically active Asp-49, isolated from Bothrops atrox snake venom, on the activation of J774A.1 macrophages. At noncytotoxic concentrations, the toxins did not affect the adhesion of the macrophages, nor their ability to detach. The data obtained showed that only BaTX-I stimulated complement receptor-mediated phagocytosis. However, BaTX-I, BaTX-II, and BaPLA2 induced the release of the superoxide anion by J774A.1 macrophages. Additionally, only BaTX-I raised the lysosomal volume of macrophages after 15 min of incubation. After 30 min, all the phospholipases increased this parameter, which was not observed within 60 min. Moreover, BaTX-I, BaTX-II, and BaPLA2 increased the number of lipid bodies on macrophages submitted to phagocytosis and not submitted to phagocytosis. However, BaTX-II and BaPLA2 induced the release of TNF-α by J774A.1 macrophages. Taken together, the data show that, despite differences in enzymatic activity, the three toxins induced inflammatory events and whether the enzyme is acidic or basic does not seem to contribute to these effects.

  4. Synthesis and characterization of chitosan tripolyphosphate nanoparticles and its encapsulation efficiency containing Russell's viper snake venom.

    PubMed

    Venkatesan, C; Vimal, S; Hameed, A S Sahul

    2013-08-01

    Chitosan Tripolyphosphate (CS/TPP) nanoparticle is a biodegradable and nontoxic polysaccharide, used as a carrier for drug delivery. The morphology and particle-size measurements of the nanoparticles were studied by field emission scanning electron microscopy and Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR). This study aims to evaluate the impact of Russell's viper venom encapsulation on various factors and loading capacity, in addition to explore the physicochemical structure of nanoparticles. FTIR confirmed that tripolyphosphoric groups of TPP linked with ammonium groups of CS in the nanoparticles. Our results showed that CS can react with TPP to form stable cationic nanoparticles. The results also showed that encapsulation efficiency of venom at different concentrations of 20, 40, 60, 500, and 1000 µg/mL were achieved for CS/TPP nanoparticles at different concentrations of 1.5, 2, and 3 mg/mL. The cytotoxicity of CS/TPP nanoparticles was evaluated by MTT (-3 (4, 5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2, 5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide, a tetrazole) assay.

  5. Anti arthritic and anti inflammatory activity of a cytotoxic protein NN-32 from Indian spectacle cobra (Naja naja) venom in male albino rats.

    PubMed

    Gomes, Antony; Datta, Poulami; Das, Tanaya; Biswas, Ajoy Kumar; Gomes, Aparna

    2014-11-01

    The anti arthritic and anti inflammatory activity of NN-32, a cytotoxic protein from Indian spectacle cobra snake (Naja naja) venom has been studied in Freund's complete adjuvant (FCA) induced arthritis and carrageenan induced anti inflammatory model. NN-32 treatment showed significant decrease in physical and urinary parameters, serum enzymes, serum cytokines levels as compared to arthritic control group of rats. NN-32 treatment recovered carrageenan induced inflammation as compared to control group of rats. The findings showed that the cytotoxic protein NN-32 shares anti arthritic and anti inflammatory activity and thus NN-32 may target complex pathophysiological processes like cancer- arthritis-inflammation.

  6. In vitro snake venom detoxifying action of some marine algae of Gulf of Mannar, south-east coast of India.

    PubMed

    Vasanthi, Hannah R; Jaswanth, A; Krishnaraj, V; Rajamanickam, G V; Saraswathy, A

    2003-12-01

    The extract of the brown seaweed Padina boergesenii and the red seaweed Hypnea valentiae was found to detoxify (in vitro) the venom of Naja nigricollis. There was a remarkable reduction in the mortality of albino mice after intraperitoneal (i.p.) administration of reconstituted venom with the extract compared to those challenged with the venom only. The survival of the animals exposed to the venom incubated with the different concentrations of the extract was used as the in vitro detoxification parameter.

  7. Animal Venoms as a Source of Natural Antimicrobials: An overview.

    PubMed

    Perumal Samy, Ramar; Stiles, Bradley G; Franco, Octavio L; Sethi, Gautam; Lim, Lina Hk

    2017-03-10

    Hospitals are breeding grounds for many life-threatening bacteria worldwide. Clinically associated gram-positive bacteria such as Staphylococcus aureus/methicillin-resistant S. aureus and many others increase the risk of severe mortality and morbidity. The failure of antibiotics to kill various pathogens due to bacterial resistance highlights the urgent need to develop novel, potent, and less toxic agents from natural sources against various infectious agents. Currently, several promising classes of natural molecules from snake (terrestrial and sea), scorpion, spider, honey bee and wasp venoms hold promise as rich sources of chemotherapeutics against infectious pathogens. Interestingly, snake venom-derived synthetic peptide/snake cathelicidin is not only has potent antimicrobial and wound-repair activity but is highly stable and safe. Such molecules are promising candidates for novel venom-based drugs against S. aureus infections. The structure of animal venom proteins/peptides (cysteine rich) consists of hydrophobic α-helices or β-sheets that produce lethal pores and membrane-damaging effects on bacteria. All these antimicrobial peptides are under early experimental or pre-clinical stages of development. It is therefore important to employ novel tools for the design and the development of new antibiotics from the untapped animal venoms of snake, scorpion, and spider for treating resistant pathogens. To date, snail venom toxins have shown little antibiotic potency against human pathogens.

  8. When snakes bite: the management of North American Crotalinae snake envenomation.

    PubMed

    Ashton, Jenny; Baker, Stephanie N; Weant, Kyle A

    2011-01-01

    There are more than 120 species of snakes indigenous to the United States, 25 of which are venomous. Although snake envenomation carries a relatively low risk of mortality in the United States, it can result in significant morbidity if left untreated. The venom of Crotalinae snakes contains a complex mixture of enzymatic proteins with various clinical implications. Of these complications, the most significant are consumptive coagulopathy, compartment syndrome, and hypovolemic shock. The development of ovine Crotalidae polyvalent immune Fab antivenin (CroFab) has greatly changed the approach to snake envenomation. Nevertheless, multiple factors complicate its use and the overall management of this clinical presentation. The intent of this review is to discuss relevant management issues associated with Crotalinae envenomation in the emergency department.

  9. Functional and Structural Diversification of the Anguimorpha Lizard Venom System*

    PubMed Central

    Fry, Bryan G.; Winter, Kelly; Norman, Janette A.; Roelants, Kim; Nabuurs, Rob J. A.; van Osch, Matthias J. P.; Teeuwisse, Wouter M.; van der Weerd, Louise; Mcnaughtan, Judith E.; Kwok, Hang Fai; Scheib, Holger; Greisman, Laura; Kochva, Elazar; Miller, Laurence J.; Gao, Fan; Karas, John; Scanlon, Denis; Lin, Feng; Kuruppu, Sanjaya; Shaw, Chris; Wong, Lily; Hodgson, Wayne C.

    2010-01-01

    Venom has only been recently discovered to be a basal trait of the Anguimorpha lizards. Consequently, very little is known about the timings of toxin recruitment events, venom protein molecular evolution, or even the relative physical diversifications of the venom system itself. A multidisciplinary approach was used to examine the evolution across the full taxonomical range of this ∼130 million-year-old clade. Analysis of cDNA libraries revealed complex venom transcriptomes. Most notably, three new cardioactive peptide toxin types were discovered (celestoxin, cholecystokinin, and YY peptides). The latter two represent additional examples of convergent use of genes in toxic arsenals, both having previously been documented as components of frog skin defensive chemical secretions. Two other novel venom gland-overexpressed modified versions of other protein frameworks were also recovered from the libraries (epididymal secretory protein and ribonuclease). Lectin, hyaluronidase, and veficolin toxin types were sequenced for the first time from lizard venoms and shown to be homologous to the snake venom forms. In contrast, phylogenetic analyses demonstrated that the lizard natriuretic peptide toxins were recruited independently of the form in snake venoms. The de novo evolution of helokinestatin peptide toxin encoding domains within the lizard venom natriuretic gene was revealed to be exclusive to the helodermatid/anguid subclade. New isoforms were sequenced for cysteine-rich secretory protein, kallikrein, and phospholipase A2 toxins. Venom gland morphological analysis revealed extensive evolutionary tinkering. Anguid glands are characterized by thin capsules and mixed glands, serous at the bottom of the lobule and mucous toward the apex. Twice, independently this arrangement was segregated into specialized serous protein-secreting glands with thick capsules with the mucous lobules now distinct (Heloderma and the Lanthanotus/Varanus clade). The results obtained highlight

  10. A novel snake venom-derived GPIb antagonist, anfibatide, protects mice from acute experimental ischaemic stroke and reperfusion injury

    PubMed Central

    Li, Ting-Ting; Fan, Man-Li; Hou, Shi-Xiang; Li, Xiao-Yi; Barry, Devin M; Jin, Hui; Luo, Sheng-Yong; Kong, Feng; Lau, Lit-Fui; Dai, Xiang-Rong; Zhang, Guo-Hui; Zhou, Lan-Lan

    2015-01-01

    Background and Purpose Ischaemic stroke is a serious disease with limited therapy options. Glycoprotein (GP)Ib binding to von Willebrand factor (vWF) exposed at vascular injury initiates platelet adhesion and contributes to platelet aggregation. GPIb has been suggested as an effective target for antithrombotic therapy in stroke. Anfibatide is a GPIb antagonist derived from snake venom and we investigated its protective effect on experimental brain ischaemia in mice. Experimental Approach Focal cerebral ischaemia was induced by 90 min of transient middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO). These mice were then treated with anfibatide (4, 2, 1 μg·kg−1), injected i.v., after 90 min of MCAO, followed by 1 h of reperfusion. Tirofiban, a GPIIb/IIIα antagonist, was used as a positive control. Key Results Twenty-four hours after MCAO, anfibatide-treated mice showed significantly improved ischaemic lesions in a dose-dependent manner. The mice had smaller infarct volumes, less severe neurological deficits and histopathology of cerebrum tissues compared with the untreated MCAO mice. Moreover, anfibatide decreased the amount of GPIbα, vWF and accumulation of fibrin(ogen) in the vasculature of the ischaemic hemisphere. Tirofiban had similar effects on infarct size and fibrin(ogen) deposition compared with the MCAO group. Importantly, the anfibatide-treated mice showed a lower incidence of intracerebral haemorrhage and shorter tail bleeding time compared with the tirofiban-treated mice. Conclusions and Implications Our data indicate anfibatide is a safe GPIb antagonist that exerts a protective effect on cerebral ischaemia and reperfusion injury. Anfibatide is a promising candidate that could be beneficial for the treatment of ischaemic stroke. PMID:25917571

  11. Global richness patterns of venomous snakes reveal contrasting influences of ecology and history in two different clades.

    PubMed

    Terribile, Levi Carina; Olalla-Tárraga, Miguel Angel; Morales-Castilla, Ignacio; Rueda, Marta; Vidanes, Rosa M; Rodríguez, Miguel Angel; Diniz-Filho, José Alexandre Felizola

    2009-03-01

    Recent studies addressing broad-scale species richness gradients have proposed two main primary drivers: contemporary climate and evolutionary processes (differential balance between speciation and extinction). Here, we analyze the global richness patterns of two venomous snake clades, Viperidae and Elapidae. We used ordinary least squares multiple regression (OLS) and partial regression analysis to investigate to what extent actual evapotranspiration (AET; summarizing current environmental conditions) and biogeographical regions (representing evolutionary effects) were associated with species richness. For viperids, AET explained 45.6% of the variance in richness whereas the effect of this variable for elapids was almost null (0.5%). On the other hand, biogeographic regions were the best predictors of elapid richness (56.5%), against its relatively small effect (25.9%) in viperid richness. Partial regressions also revealed similar patterns for independent effects of climate and history in both clades. However, the independent historical effect in Elapidae decreased from 45.2 to 17.8% when we excluded Australia from the analyses, indicating that the strong historical effect that had emerged for the global richness pattern was reflecting the historical process of elapid radiation into Australia. Even after excluding Australia, the historical signal in elapid richness in the rest of the globe was still significant and much higher than that observed in viperid richness at a global scale (2.7% after controlling for AET effects). Differences in the evolutionary age of these two clades can be invoked to explain these contrasting results, in that viperids probably had more time for diversification, generating richness responses to environmental gradients, whereas the pattern of distribution of elapid richness can be more directly interpreted in an evolutionary context. Moreover, these results show the importance of starting to adopt deconstructive approaches to species

  12. Activation of J77A.1 Macrophages by Three Phospholipases A2 Isolated from Bothrops atrox Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Furtado, Juliana L.; Oliveira, George A.; Pontes, Adriana S.; Setúbal, Sulamita da S.; Xavier, Caroline V.; Lacouth-Silva, Fabianne; Lima, Beatriz F.; Zaqueo, Kayena D.; Kayano, Anderson M.; Calderon, Leonardo A.; Stábeli, Rodrigo G.; Soares, Andreimar M.; Zuliani, Juliana P.

    2014-01-01

    In the present study, we investigated the in vitro effects of two basic myotoxic phospholipases A2 (PLA2), BaTX-I, a catalytically inactive Lys-49 variant, and BaTX-II, a catalytically active Asp-49, and of one acidic myotoxic PLA2, BaPLA2, a catalytically active Asp-49, isolated from Bothrops atrox snake venom, on the activation of J774A.1 macrophages. At noncytotoxic concentrations, the toxins did not affect the adhesion of the macrophages, nor their ability to detach. The data obtained showed that only BaTX-I stimulated complement receptor-mediated phagocytosis. However, BaTX-I, BaTX-II, and BaPLA2 induced the release of the superoxide anion by J774A.1 macrophages. Additionally, only BaTX-I raised the lysosomal volume of macrophages after 15 min of incubation. After 30 min, all the phospholipases increased this parameter, which was not observed within 60 min. Moreover, BaTX-I, BaTX-II, and BaPLA2 increased the number of lipid bodies on macrophages submitted to phagocytosis and not submitted to phagocytosis. However, BaTX-II and BaPLA2 induced the release of TNF-α by J774A.1 macrophages. Taken together, the data show that, despite differences in enzymatic activity, the three toxins induced inflammatory events and whether the enzyme is acidic or basic does not seem to contribute to these effects. PMID:24592395

  13. Lebein, a snake venom disintegrin, suppresses human colon cancer cells proliferation and tumor-induced angiogenesis through cell cycle arrest, apoptosis induction and inhibition of VEGF expression.

    PubMed

    Zakraoui, Ons; Marcinkiewicz, Cezary; Aloui, Zohra; Othman, Houcemeddine; Grépin, Renaud; Haoues, Meriam; Essafi, Makram; Srairi-Abid, Najet; Gasmi, Ammar; Karoui, Habib; Pagès, Gilles; Essafi-Benkhadir, Khadija

    2017-01-01

    Lebein, is an heterodimeric disintegrin isolated from Macrovipera lebetina snake venom that was previously characterized as an inhibitor of ADP-induced platelet aggregation. In this study, we investigated the effect of Lebein on the p53-dependent growth of human colon adenocarcinoma cell lines. We found that Lebein significantly inhibited LS174 (p53wt), HCT116 (p53wt), and HT29 (p53mut) colon cancer cell viability by inducing cell cycle arrest through the modulation of expression levels of the tumor suppression factor p53, cell cycle regulating proteins cyclin D1, CDK2, CDK4, retinoblastoma (Rb), CDK1, and cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitors p21 and p27. Interestingly, Lebein-induced apoptosis of colon cancer cells was dependent on their p53 status. Thus, in LS174 cells, cell death was associated with PARP cleavage and the activation of caspases 3 and 8 while in HCT116 cells, Lebein induced caspase-independent apoptosis through increased expression of apoptosis inducing factor (AIF). In LS174 cells, Lebein triggers the activation of the MAPK ERK1/2 pathway through induction of reactive oxygen species (ROS). It also decreased cell adhesion and migration to fibronectin through down regulation of α5β1 integrin. Moreover, Lebein significantly reduced the expression of two angiogenesis stimulators, Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) and Neuropilin 1 (NRP1). It inhibited the VEGF-induced neovascularization process in the quail embryonic CAM system and blocked the development of human colon adenocarcinoma in nude mice. Overall, our work indicates that Lebein may be useful to design a new therapy against colon cancer. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  14. CoaTx-II, a new dimeric Lys49 phospholipase A2 from Crotalus oreganus abyssus snake venom with bactericidal potential: Insights into its structure and biological roles.

    PubMed

    Almeida, J R; Lancellotti, M; Soares, A M; Calderon, L A; Ramírez, D; González, W; Marangoni, S; Da Silva, S L

    2016-09-15

    Snake venoms are rich and intriguing sources of biologically-active molecules that act on target cells, modulating a diversity of physiological functions and presenting promising pharmacological applications. Lys49 phospholipase A2 is one of the multifunctional proteins present in these complex secretions and, although catalytically inactive, has a variety of biological activities, including cytotoxic, antibacterial, inflammatory, antifungal activities. Herein, a Lys49 phospholipase A2, denominated CoaTx-II from Crotalus oreganus abyssus, was purified and structurally and pharmacologically characterized. CoaTx-II was isolated with a high degree of purity by a combination of two chromatographic steps; molecular exclusion and reversed-phase high performance liquid chromatography. This toxin is dimeric with a mass of 13868.2 Da (monomeric form), as determined by mass spectrometry. CoaTx-II is rich in Arg and Lys residues and displays high identity with other Lys49 PLA2 homologues, which have high isoelectric points. The structural model of dimeric CoaTx-II shows that the toxin is non-covalently stabilized. Despite its enzymatic inactivity, in vivo CoaTx-II caused local muscular damage, characterized by increased plasma creatine kinase and confirmed by histological alterations, in addition to an inflammatory activity, as demonstrated by mice paw edema induction and pro-inflammatory cytokine IL-6 elevation. CoaTx-II also presents antibacterial activity against gram negative (Pseudomonas aeruginosa 31NM, Escherichia coli ATCC 25922) and positive (Staphyloccocus aureus BEC9393 and Rib1) bacteria. Therefore, data show that this newly purified toxin plays a central role in mediating the degenerative events associated with envenomation, in addition to demonstrating antibacterial properties, with potential for use in the development of strategies for antivenom therapy and combating antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

  15. Neurotoxins from Snake Venoms and α-Conotoxin ImI Inhibit Functionally Active Ionotropic γ-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) Receptors*

    PubMed Central

    Kudryavtsev, Denis S.; Shelukhina, Irina V.; Son, Lina V.; Ojomoko, Lucy O.; Kryukova, Elena V.; Lyukmanova, Ekaterina N.; Zhmak, Maxim N.; Dolgikh, Dmitry A.; Ivanov, Igor A.; Kasheverov, Igor E.; Starkov, Vladislav G.; Ramerstorfer, Joachim; Sieghart, Werner; Tsetlin, Victor I.; Utkin, Yuri N.

    2015-01-01

    Ionotropic receptors of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABAAR) regulate neuronal inhibition and are targeted by benzodiazepines and general anesthetics. We show that a fluorescent derivative of α-cobratoxin (α-Ctx), belonging to the family of three-finger toxins from snake venoms, specifically stained the α1β3γ2 receptor; and at 10 μm α-Ctx completely blocked GABA-induced currents in this receptor expressed in Xenopus oocytes (IC50 = 236 nm) and less potently inhibited α1β2γ2 ≈ α2β2γ2 > α5β2γ2 > α2β3γ2 and α1β3δ GABAARs. The α1β3γ2 receptor was also inhibited by some other three-finger toxins, long α-neurotoxin Ls III and nonconventional toxin WTX. α-Conotoxin ImI displayed inhibitory activity as well. Electrophysiology experiments showed mixed competitive and noncompetitive α-Ctx action. Fluorescent α-Ctx, however, could be displaced by muscimol indicating that most of the α-Ctx-binding sites overlap with the orthosteric sites at the β/α subunit interface. Modeling and molecular dynamic studies indicated that α-Ctx or α-bungarotoxin seem to interact with GABAAR in a way similar to their interaction with the acetylcholine-binding protein or the ligand-binding domain of nicotinic receptors. This was supported by mutagenesis studies and experiments with α-conotoxin ImI and a chimeric Naja oxiana α-neurotoxin indicating that the major role in α-Ctx binding to GABAAR is played by the tip of its central loop II accommodating under loop C of the receptors. PMID:26221036

  16. Neurotoxicity and other pharmacological activities of the snake venom phospholipase A2 OS2: The N-terminal region is more important than enzymatic activity

    PubMed Central

    Rouault, Morgane; Rash, Lachlan D.; Escoubas, Pierre; Boilard, Eric; Bollinger, James; Lomonte, Bruno; Maurin, Thomas; Guillaume, Carole; Canaan, Stéphane; Deregnaucourt, Christiane; Schrével, Joseph; Doglio, Alain; Gutiérrez, José María; Lazdunski, Michel; Gelb, Michael H.; Lambeau, Gérard

    2009-01-01

    Several snake venom secreted phospholipases A2 (sPLA2s) including OS2 exert a variety of pharmacological effects ranging from central neurotoxicity to anti-HIV activity by mechanisms that are not yet fully understood. To conclusively address the role of enzymatic activity and map the key structural elements of OS2 responsible for its pharmacological properties, we have prepared single point OS2 mutants at the catalytic site and large chimeras between OS2 and OS1, an homologous but non toxic sPLA2. Most importantly, we found that the enzymatic activity of the active site mutant H48Q is 500-fold lower than that of the wild-type protein, while central neurotoxicity is only 16-fold lower, providing convincing evidence that catalytic activity is at most a minor factor that determines central neurotoxicity. The chimera approach has identified the N-terminal region (residues 1–22) of OS2, but not the central one (residues 58–89), as crucial for both enzymatic activity and pharmacological effects. The C-terminal region of OS2 (residues 102–119) was found to be critical for enzymatic activity, but not for central neurotoxicity and anti-HIV activity, allowing us to further dissociate enzymatic activity and pharmacological effects. Finally, direct binding studies with the C-terminal chimera which poorly binds to phospholipids while it is still neurotoxic, led to the identification of a subset of brain N-type receptors which may be directly involved in central neurotoxicity. PMID:16669624

  17. Neurotoxicity and other pharmacological activities of the snake venom phospholipase A2 OS2: the N-terminal region is more important than enzymatic activity.

    PubMed

    Rouault, Morgane; Rash, Lachlan D; Escoubas, Pierre; Boilard, Eric; Bollinger, James; Lomonte, Bruno; Maurin, Thomas; Guillaume, Carole; Canaan, Stéphane; Deregnaucourt, Christiane; Schrével, Joseph; Doglio, Alain; Gutiérrez, José María; Lazdunski, Michel; Gelb, Michael H; Lambeau, Gérard

    2006-05-09

    Several snake venom secreted phospholipases A2 (sPLA2s) including OS2 exert a variety of pharmacological effects ranging from central neurotoxicity to anti-HIV activity by mechanisms that are not yet fully understood. To conclusively address the role of enzymatic activity and map the key structural elements of OS2 responsible for its pharmacological properties, we have prepared single point OS2 mutants at the catalytic site and large chimeras between OS2 and OS1, a homologous but nontoxic sPLA2. Most importantly, we found that the enzymatic activity of the active site mutant H48Q is 500-fold lower than that of the wild-type protein, while central neurotoxicity is only 16-fold lower, providing convincing evidence that catalytic activity is at most a minor factor that determines central neurotoxicity. The chimera approach has identified the N-terminal region (residues 1-22) of OS2, but not the central one (residues 58-89), as crucial for both enzymatic activity and pharmacological effects. The C-terminal region of OS2 (residues 102-119) was found to be critical for enzymatic activity, but not for central neurotoxicity and anti-HIV activity, allowing us to further dissociate enzymatic activity and pharmacological effects. Finally, direct binding studies with the C-terminal chimera, which poorly binds to phospholipids while it is still neurotoxic, led to the identification of a subset of brain N-type receptors which may be directly involved in central neurotoxicity.

  18. Divergent functional profiles of acidic and basic phospholipases A2 in the venom of the snake Porthidium lansbergii lansbergii.

    PubMed

    Jiménez-Charris, Eliécer; Montealegre-Sánchez, Leonel; Solano-Redondo, Luis; Castro-Herrera, Fernando; Fierro-Pérez, Leonardo; Lomonte, Bruno

    2016-09-01

    The Lansberg's hognose pitviper, Porthidium lansbergii lansbergii, inhabits northern Colombia. A recent proteomic characterization of its venom (J. Proteomics [2015] 114, 287-299) revealed the presence of phospholipases A2 (PLA2) accounting for 16.2% of its proteins. The two most abundant PLA2s were biochemically and functionally characterized. Pllans-I is a basic, dimeric enzyme with a monomer mass of 14,136 Da, while Pllans-II is an acidic, monomeric enzyme of 13,901 Da. Both have Asp49 in their partial amino acid sequences and, accordingly, are catalytically active upon natural or synthetic substrates. Nevertheless, these two enzymes differ markedly in their bioactivities. Pllans-I induces myonecrosis, edema, and is lethal by intracerebro-ventricular injection in mice, as well as cytolytic and anticoagulant in vitro. In contrast, Pllans-II is devoid of these effects, except for the induction of a moderate edema. In spite of lacking myotoxicity, Pllans-II enhances the muscle damaging action of Pllans-I in vivo. Altogether, results further illustrate the divergent functional profiles of basic and acidic PLA2s in viperid venoms, and suggest that Pllans-I plays a myotoxic role in envenomings by P. l. lansbergii, whereas Pllans-II, apparently devoid of toxicity, enhances muscle damage caused by Pllans-I.

  19. Cysteine rich secretory proteins in reproduction and venom.

    PubMed

    Gibbs, Gerard M; O'Bryan, Moira K

    2007-01-01

    The cysteine rich secretory proteins (Crisp) are predominantly found in the mammalian male reproductive tract and in the venom of reptiles. Crisps are two domain proteins with a structurally similar yet evolutionarily diverse N-terminal domain and a characteristic cysteine rich C-terminal domain which we refer to as the Crisp domain. Since their identification 30 years ago Crisp research in mammals has focused on the characterisation of their expression localization to infer function. While no doubt important observations, these have not substantially led to an understanding of the biochemical activity of the Crisps and their role in sperm function or fertilisation. Recently, we demonstrated that the Crisp-2 Crisp domain has a structure similar to ion channel toxins ShK and BgK and was itself able to regulate Ca2+ flux through ryanodine receptors. These data build upon the previous characterizations of reptile venom Crisps as regulators of several types of ion channels and permits for the first time a dissection of the biochemical activity of mammalian Crisps.

  20. Snake venom disintegrins: novel dimeric disintegrins and structural diversification by disulphide bond engineering.

    PubMed Central

    Calvete, Juan J; Moreno-Murciano, M Paz; Theakston, R David G; Kisiel, Dariusz G; Marcinkiewicz, Cezary

    2003-01-01

    We report the isolation and amino acid sequences of six novel dimeric disintegrins from the venoms of Vipera lebetina obtusa (VLO), V. berus (VB), V. ammodytes (VA), Echis ocellatus (EO) and Echis multisquamatus (EMS). Disintegrins VLO4, VB7, VA6 and EO4 displayed the RGD motif and inhibited the adhesion of K562 cells, expressing the integrin alpha5beta1 to immobilized fibronectin. A second group of dimeric disintegrins (VLO5 and EO5) had MLD and VGD motifs in their subunits and blocked the adhesion of the alpha4beta1 integrin to vascular cell adhesion molecule 1 with high selectivity. On the other hand, disintegrin EMS11 inhibited both alpha5beta1 and alpha4beta1 integrins with almost the same degree of specificity. Comparison of the amino acid sequences of the dimeric disintegrins with those of other disintegrins by multiple-sequence alignment and phylogenetic analysis, in conjunction with current biochemical and genetic data, supports the view that the different disintegrin subfamilies evolved from a common ADAM (a disintegrin and metalloproteinase-like) scaffold and that structural diversification occurred through disulphide bond engineering. PMID:12667142

  1. Computational study of some benzamidine-based inhibitors of thrombin-like snake venom proteinases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Henriques, Elsa S.; Nascimento, Marco A. C.; Ramos, Maria João

    Pit viper venoms contain a number of serine proteinases that, despite their observed coagulant thrombin-like action in vitro, exhibit a paradoxical benign defibrinogenating (anticoagulant) action in vivo, with clinical applications in preventing thrombi and improved blood circulation. Considering that several benzamidine-based inhibitors, some highly selective to thrombin, also inhibit the enzymatic activity of such venombins, the modeling of their enzyme-inhibitor interactions could provide valuable information on the topological factors that determine the divergences in activity. The first step, and the object of the present study, was to derive the necessary set of parameters, consistent with the CHARMM force field, and to perform molecular dynamics (MD) simulations on a few selected representatives of the inhibitors in question under physiological conditions. Bonding and van der Waals parameters were derived by analogy to similar ones in the existing force field. Net atomic charges were obtained with a restrained fitting to the molecular electrostatic potential generated at B3LYP/6-31G(d) level. The parameters were refined to reproduce the available experimental geometries and crystal data, and the MD simulations of the free inhibitors in aqueous solution at 298 K provided an insightful description of their available conformational space.

  2. Enhanced anticancer efficacy of snake venom combined with silica nanoparticles in a murine model of human multiple myeloma: molecular targets for cell cycle arrest and apoptosis induction.

    PubMed

    Al-Sadoon, Mohamed K; Rabah, Danny M; Badr, Gamal

    2013-01-01

    Multiple myeloma (MM) is a clonal disease of plasma cells that reside in the bone marrow (BM). MM is an incurable disease; thus, screening for novel anti-myeloma drugs remains critically important. We recently described a silica nanoparticle-based snake venom delivery model that targets cancer cells, but not normal cells. Using this model, we demonstrated a strong enhancement of the antitumor activity of snake venom extracted from Walterinnesia aegyptia (WEV) in two breast carcinoma cell lines when the venom was combined with silica nanoparticles (WEV+NP). In the present study, we aimed to delineate the in vivo therapeutic efficacy of WEV+NP in an MM-bearing experimental nude mouse model. We found that treatment with WEV+NP or WEV alone significantly inhibited tumor growth compared to treatment with NP or vehicle. WEV+NP- and WEV-treated cancer cells exhibited marked elevations in oxidative stress and robust reductions in the levels of interleukin-6 (IL-6) and B cell-activating factor (BAFF). WEV+NP also decreased the surface expression of the chemokine receptors CXCR3, CXCR4 and CXCR6 to a greater extent than WEV alone, and WEV+NP subsequently reduced migration in response to the cognate ligands CXCL10, CXCL12 and CXCL16. Furthermore, we found that WEV+NP strongly inhibited insulin-like growth factor 1 (EGF-1)- and IL-6-mediated MM cell proliferation, altered the cell cycle and enhanced the induction of apoptosis of MM cells. In addition, the results of treatment with WEV+NP or WEV alone revealed that the combination of WEV with NP robustly decreased the expression of cyclin D1, Bcl-2 and the phosphorylation of AKT; increased the expression of cyclin B1; altered the mitochondrial membrane potential; increased the activity of caspase-3, -8 and -9; and sensitized MM cells to growth arrest and apoptosis. Our data reveal the therapeutic potential of the nanoparticle-sustained delivery of snake venom to fight cancer cells.

  3. Isolation and characterization of an immunosuppressive protein from venom of the pupa-specific endoparasitoid Pteromalus puparum.

    PubMed

    Wu, Ma-li; Ye, Gong-yin; Zhu, Jia-ying; Chen, Xue-xin; Hu, Cui

    2008-10-01

    In hymenopteran parasitoids devoid of symbiotic viruses, venom proteins appear to play a major role in host immune suppression and host regulation. Not much is known about the active components of venom proteins in these parasitoids, especially those that have the functions involved in the suppression of host cellular immunity. Here, we report the isolation and characterization of a venom protein Vn.11 with 24.1 kDa in size from Pteromalus puparum, a pupa-specific endoparasitoid of Pieris rapae. The Vn.11 venom protein is isolated with the combination of ammonium sulfate precipitation and anion exchange chromatography, and its purity is verified using SDS-PAGE analysis. Like crude venom, the Vn.11 venom protein significantly inhibits the spreading behavior and encapsulation ability of host hemocytes in vitro. It is suggested that this protein is an actual component of P. puparum crude venom as host cellular-immune suppressive factor.

  4. The disulfide bond pattern of catrocollastatin C, a disintegrin-like/cysteine-rich protein isolated from Crotalus atrox venom.

    PubMed Central

    Calvete, J. J.; Moreno-Murciano, M. P.; Sanz, L.; Jürgens, M.; Schrader, M.; Raida, M.; Benjamin, D. C.; Fox, J. W.

    2000-01-01

    The disulfide bond pattern of catrocollastatin-C was determined by N-terminal sequencing and mass spectrometry. The N-terminal disintegrin-like domain is a compact structure including eight disulfide bonds, seven of them in the same pattern as the disintegrin bitistatin. The protein has two extra cysteine residues (XIII and XVI) that form an additional disulfide bond that is characteristically found in the disintegrin-like domains of cellular metalloproteinases (ADAMs) and PIII snake venom Zn-metalloproteinases (SVMPs). The C-terminal cysteine-rich domain of catrocollastatin-C contains five disulfide bonds between nearest-neighbor cysteines and a long range disulfide bridge between CysV and CysX. These results provide structural evidence for a redefinition of the disintegrin-like and cysteine-rich domain boundaries. An evolutionary pathway for ADAMs, PIII, and PII SVMPs based on disulfide bond engineering is also proposed. PMID:10933502

  5. Intraspecific variation in the venoms of the South American rattlesnake (Crotalus durissus terrificus).

    PubMed

    Francischetti, I M; Gombarovits, M E; Valenzuela, J G; Carlini, C R; Guimarães, J A

    2000-08-01

    The venom of eight individual Crotalus durissus terrificus snakes from the State of Minas Gerais, Brazil, in addition to pooled venom from Butantan Institute, were compared. Snakes were captured in distinct locations, some of them 600 km apart: Conselheiro Lafaiete, Entre Rios de Minas, Itauna, Itapecerica, Lavras, Patos de Minas, Paracatu, and Santo Antonio do Amparo. The crude venoms were tested for proteolytic, phospholipase A2, platelet aggregating, and hemagglutinating activities. The venoms were also analyzed by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (PAGE) and isoelectric focusing (IEF). Chromatographic patterns of venom proteins on both gel-filtration and anion-exchange chromatographies were also performed. All venoms presented high phospholipase A2 and platelet-aggregating activities, but only minimal hemagglutinating or proteolytic activities were found. Gel-filtration chromatography showed a characteristic profile for most venoms where four main peaks were separated, including the typical ones where convulxin and crotoxin were identified; however, peaks with high amounts of lower molecular weight proteins were found in the venoms from the Santo Antonio do Amparo location and Butantan Institute, characterizing these venoms as crotamine positive. Anion-exchange chromatographies presented a similar protein distribution pattern, although the number of peaks (up to ten) distinguished some venom samples. Consistent with these results, polyacrylamide gels that were silver stained after venom separation by PAGE or IEF presented a similar qualitative band distribution, although a quantitative heterogeneity was detected among venoms. Our results suggest that the variability found in venom components of C. d. terrificus venoms captured in Minas Gerais State may be genetically inherited and/or environmentally induced.

  6. Determination of Toxic Activities in Bothrops spp. Snake Venoms Using Animal-Free Approaches: Correlation Between In Vitro Versus In Vivo Assays.

    PubMed

    de Souza, Letícia Lopes; Stransky, Stephanie; Guerra-Duarte, Clara; Flor-Sá, Ana; Schneider, Francisco Santos; Kalapothakis, Evanguedes; Chávez-Olórtegui, Carlos

    2015-10-01

    The main purpose of this study is to investigate the in vitro toxic effects of 5 Bothrops spp. snake venoms, which are part of the antigenic mixture used for the production of Brazilian antivenom, and evaluate their correlation with the in vivo toxic activities of Bothrops spp. venoms. The correlation analysis could be helpful for the replacement of living animals experimentation for in vitro bioassay. Cytotoxicity, L-amino acid oxidase (LAAO), proteolitic (serine and metalloproteinase), hyaluronidase (Hyal), and phospholipase A2 (PLA2) activities were estimated and the correlation coefficient was determined for each activity in relation to lethality, edema, hemorrhage and necrosis induced in live animals by B. jararaca, B. alternatus, B. jararacussu, B. neuwiedi, and B. moojeni venoms. The lethal activity in mice was highly related to Hyal activity (r = 0.94, p < .05), edema related to PLA2 activity (r = 0.94, p < .05), whereas the necrotizing activity showed high correlation with LAAO activity (r = 0.83, p < .05). A very significant correlation between in vitro cytotoxicity and LAAO activities was also observed (r = 0.97, p < .05).

  7. Biochemical and functional studies of ColTx-I, a new myotoxic phospholipase A2 isolated from Crotalus oreganus lutosus (Great Basin rattlesnake) snake venom.

    PubMed

    Almeida, J R; Resende, L M; Silva, A G; Ribeiro, R I M A; Stábeli, R G; Soares, A M; Calderon, L A; Marangoni, S; Da Silva, S L

    2016-07-01

    Commonly, phospholipases A2 (PLA2s) play key roles in the pathogenesis of the local tissue damage characteristic of crotaline and viperine snake envenomations. Crotalus oreganus lutosus snake venom has not been extensively studied; therefore, the characterization of its components represents a valuable biotechnological tool for studying pathophysiological processes of envenoming and for gaining a deeper understanding of its biological effects. In this study, for the first time, a basic PLA2 myotoxin, ColTx-I, was purified from C. o. lutosus through two chromatographic steps. ColTx-I is monomeric with calculated molecular mass weight (Mw) of 14,145 Da and a primary structure closely related to basic PLA2s from viperid venoms. The pure enzyme has a specific activity of 15.87 ± 0.65 nmol/min/mg at optimal conditions (pH 8.0 and 37 °C). ColTx-I activity was found to be dependent on Ca(2+), as its substitution by other ionic species as well as the addition of chelating agents significantly reduced its phospholipase activity. In vivo, ColTx-I triggered dose-dependent inflammatory responses, measured using the paw edema model, with an increase in IL-6 levels, systemic and local myotoxicity, characterized by elevated plasma creatine kinase activity. ColTx-I induced a complex series of degenerative events associated with edema, inflammatory infiltrate and skeletal muscle necrosis. These biochemical and functional results suggest that ColTx-I, a myotoxic and inflammatory mediator, plays a relevant role in C. o. lutosus envenomation. Thus, detailed studies on its mechanism of action, such as evaluating the synergism between ColTx-I and other venom components may reveal targets for the development of more specific and effective therapies.

  8. cDNA cloning of a snake venom metalloproteinase from the eastern diamondback rattlesnake (Crotalus adamanteus), and the expression of its disintegrin domain with anti-platelet effects.

    PubMed

    Suntravat, Montamas; Jia, Ying; Lucena, Sara E; Sánchez, Elda E; Pérez, John C

    2013-03-15

    A 5' truncated snake venom metalloproteinase was identified from a cDNA library constructed from venom glands of an eastern diamondback rattlesnake (Crotalus adamanteus). The 5'-rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) was used to obtain the 1865 bp full-length cDNA sequence of a snake venom metalloproteinase (CamVMPII). CamVMPII encodes an open reading frame of 488 amino acids, which includes a signal peptide, a pro-domain, a metalloproteinase domain, a spacer, and an RGD-disintegrin domain. The predicted amino acid sequence of CamVMPII showed a 91%, 90%, 83%, and 82% sequence homology to the P-II class enzymes of C. adamanteus metalloproteinase 2, Crotalus atrox CaVMP-II, Gloydius halys agkistin, and Protobothrops jerdonii jerdonitin, respectively. Disintegrins are potent inhibitors of both platelet aggregation and integrin-dependent cell adhesion. Therefore, the disintegrin domain (Cam-dis) of CamVMPII was amplified by PCR, cloned into a pET-43.1a vector, and expressed in Escherichia coli BL21. Affinity purified recombinantly modified Cam-dis (r-Cam-dis) with a yield of 8.5 mg/L culture medium was cleaved from the fusion tags by enterokinase cleavage. r-Cam-dis was further purified by two-step chromatography consisting of HiTrap™ Benzamidine FF column, followed by Talon Metal affinity column with a final yield of 1 mg/L culture. r-Cam-dis was able to inhibit all three processes of platelet thrombus formation including platelet adhesion with an estimated IC(50) of 1 nM, collagen- and ADP-induced platelet aggregation with the estimated IC(50)s of 18 and 6 nM, respectively, and platelet function on clot retraction. It is a potent anti-platelet inhibitor, which should be further investigated for drug discovery to treat stroke patients or patients with thrombotic disorders.

  9. Biological characterization of the Amazon coral Micrurus spixii snake venom: Isolation of a new neurotoxic phospholipase A2.

    PubMed

    Terra, Angelo L C; Moreira-Dill, Leandro S; Simões-Silva, Rodrigo; Monteiro, José Roniele N; Cavalcante, Walter L G; Gallacci, Márcia; Barros, Neuza B; Nicolete, Roberto; Teles, Carolina B G; Medeiros, Patrícia S M; Zanchi, Fernando B; Zuliani, Juliana P; Calderon, Leonardo A; Stábeli, Rodrigo G; Soares, Andreimar M

    2015-09-01

    The Micrurus genus is the American representative of Elapidae family. Micrurus spixii is endemic of South America and northern states of Brazil. Elapidic venoms contain neurotoxins that promote curare-mimetic neuromuscular blockage. In this study, biochemical and functional characterizations of M. spixii crude venom were performed and a new neurotoxic phospholipase A2 called MsPLA2-I was isolated. M. spixii crude venom caused severe swelling in the legs of tested mice and significant release of creatine kinase (CK) showing its myotoxic activity. Leishmanicidal activity against Leishmania amazonensis (IC50 1.24 μg/mL) was also observed, along with antiplasmodial activity against Plasmodium falciparum, which are unprecedented for Micrurus venoms. MsPLA2-I with a Mr 12,809.4 Da was isolated from the crude venom of M. spixii. The N-terminal sequencing of a fragment of 60 amino acids showed 80% similarity with another PLA2 from Micrurus altirostris. This toxin and the crude venom showed phospholipase activity. In a mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm preparation, M. spixii venom and MsPLA2-I induced the blockage of both direct and indirect twitches. While the venom presented a pronounced myotoxic activity, MsPLA2-I expressed a summation of neurotoxic activity. The results of this study make M. spixii crude venom promising compounds in the exploration of molecules with microbicidal potential.

  10. Venom proteins from endoparasitoid wasps and their role in host-parasite interactions.

    PubMed

    Asgari, Sassan; Rivers, David B

    2011-01-01

    Endoparasitoids introduce a variety of factors into their host during oviposition to ensure successful parasitism. These include ovarian and venom fluids that may be accompanied by viruses and virus-like particles. An overwhelming number of venom components are enzymes with similarities to insect metabolic enzymes, suggesting their recruitment for expression in venom glands with modified functions. Other components include protease inhibitors, paralytic factors, and constituents that facilitate/enhance entry and expression of genes from symbiotic viruses or virus-like particles. In addition, the venom gland may itself support replication/production of some viruses or virus-like entities. Overlapping functions and structural similarities of some venom, ovarian, and virus-encoded proteins suggest coevolution of molecules recruited by endoparasitoids to maintain their fitness relative to their host.

  11. The neuromuscular activity of Micrurus pyrrhocryptus venom and its neutralization by commercial and specific coral snake antivenoms

    PubMed Central

    Camargo, Thiago Magalhães; de Roodt, Adolfo Rafael; da Cruz-Höfling, Maria Alice; Rodrigues-Simioni, Léa

    2011-01-01

    The neuromuscular activity ofMicrurus pyrrochryptus venom was studied in chick biventer cervicis (BC) and mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm (PND) preparations. The venom (0.5-50μg/ml) caused irreversible, time- and concentration-dependent blockade, with BC being more sensitive than PND (50% blockade with 10μg/ml in 22±;3min and 62±4min, respectively; mean±SEM, n=6; p<0.05). In BC preparations, venom (0.5μg/ml) progressively abolished ACh-induced contractures, whereas contractures to exogenous KCl and muscle twitches in curarized preparations were unaffected. The venom neither altered creatine kinase release (venom: 25.8±1.75IU/l vs control: 24.3±2.2IU/l, n=6, after 120min), nor it caused significant muscle damage (50μg of venom/ml vs control: 3.5±0.8% vs 1.1±0.7% for PND; 4.3±1.5% vs 1.2±0.5% for BC, n=5). The venom had low PLA2 activity. Neurotoxicity was effectively neutralized by commercial Micrurus antivenom and specific antivenom. These findings indicate that M. pyrrhocryptus venom acts postsynaptically on nicotinic receptors, with no significant myotoxicity. PMID:21858249

  12. Venom Proteins from Parasitoid Wasps and Their Biological Functions

    PubMed Central

    Moreau, Sébastien J. M.; Asgari, Sassan

    2015-01-01

    Parasitoid wasps are valuable biological control agents that suppress their host populations. Factors introduced by the female wasp at parasitization play significant roles in facilitating successful development of the parasitoid larva either inside (endoparasitoid) or outside (ectoparasitoid) the host. Wasp venoms consist of a complex cocktail of proteinacious and non-proteinacious components that may offer agrichemicals as well as pharmaceutical components to improve pest management or health related disorders. Undesirably, the constituents of only a small number of wasp venoms are known. In this article, we review the latest research on venom from parasitoid wasps with an emphasis on their biological function, applications and new approaches used in venom studies. PMID:26131769

  13. Venom Proteins from Parasitoid Wasps and Their Biological Functions.

    PubMed

    Moreau, Sébastien J M; Asgari, Sassan

    2015-06-26

    Parasitoid wasps are valuable biological control agents that suppress their host populations. Factors introduced by the female wasp at parasitization play significant roles in facilitating successful development of the parasitoid larva either inside (endoparasitoid) or outside (ectoparasitoid) the host. Wasp venoms consist of a complex cocktail of proteinacious and non-proteinacious components that may offer agrichemicals as well as pharmaceutical components to improve pest management or health related disorders. Undesirably, the constituents of only a small number of wasp venoms are known. In this article, we review the latest research on venom from parasitoid wasps with an emphasis on their biological function, applications and new approaches used in venom studies.

  14. IgE Antibodies, FcεRIαand IgE-mediated Local Anaphylaxis Can Limit Snake Venom Toxicity

    PubMed Central

    Gaudenzio, Nicolas; Reber, Laurent Lionel; Sibilano, Riccardo; Tsai, Mindy; Galli, Stephen Joseph

    2015-01-01

    Background Type 2 cytokine-related (i.e., type 2) immune responses associated with development of antigen-specific Immunoglobulin E antibodies (IgE) can contribute to pathology in allergic diseases and to fatal anaphylaxis. However, recent findings in mice indicate that IgE also can enhance defense against honeybee venom. Objective We tested whether IgE antibodies, IgE-dependent effector mechanisms, and a local anaphylactic reaction to an unrelated antigen can enhance defense against Russell's viper venom (RVV) and determined whether such responses can be influenced by immunization protocol or mouse strain. Methods We compared the resistance of RVV-immunized wild-type, IgE-deficient, and Fcer1a-deficient mice following injection of a potentially lethal dose of RVV. Results A single prior exposure to RVV enhanced the ability of wild-type mice, but not mice lacking IgE or functional FcεRI, to survive challenge with a potentially lethal amount of RVV. Moreover, IgE-dependent local passive cutaneous anaphylaxis in response to challenge with an antigen not naturally present in RVV significantly enhanced resistance to the venom. Finally, we observed different effects on resistance to RVV or honeybee venoms in BALB/c versus C57BL/6 mice which had received a second exposure to that venom prior to challenge with a high dose of that venom. Conclusion These observations illustrate the potential benefit of IgE-dependent effector mechanisms in acquired host defense against venoms. The extent to which type 2 immune responses against venoms can decrease pathology associated with envenomation seems to be influenced by the type of venom, the frequency of venom exposure, and the genetic background of the host. PMID:26410782

  15. Dangerous snakes, deadly snakes and medically important snakes

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    This correspondence argues that the dangerousness of a venomous snake species is not solely determined by the venom characteristics or the lethality of the snake, and recognizes that medical importance comprises a key variable as well. The medical importance of a snake is determined by several factors – including frequency of medical attention after a bite, local or systemic envenomation provoked by the bite, fatal bites, long term consequences, availability of antivenom therapy as well as the size of the population at risk – that may vary from one region to another. PMID:24099013

  16. Occurrence of non-protein low molecular weight cardiotoxin in Indian King Cobra (Ophiophagus hannah) Cantor 1836, venom.

    PubMed

    Saha, Archita; Gomes, Aparna; Giri, B; Chakravarty, A K; Biswas, A K; Dasgupta, S C; Gomes, A

    2006-04-01

    Pathophysiology due to snakebite is a combined effect of various actions of the complex venom constituents. Importance of protein toxins in snake envenomation is well known. The present investigation reports the existence of nonprotein/nonpetide low molecular weight toxin in Indian King Cobra venom, which plays an important role in envenomation consequences in experimental animal models. A group of non-peptidic toxins (OH-NPT1) was isolated from Indian King Cobra Ophiophagus hannah by thin layer chromatography and silica gel column chromatography. UV, IR, NMR and (ESI) TOF-MS studies characterized the OH-NPT1 as a mixture of aliphatic acids having molecular weights 256, 326 and 340Da. The minimum lethal dose of OH-NPT1 was found to be 2.5 microg/20g (iv) and 4microg/20g (ip) in male albino mice. The cardiotoxic property of OH-NPT1 was established through studies on isolated guinea pig heart and auricle preparations, ECG studies in albino rat and estimation of LDH1/LDH and CPK-MB/CPK ratio in Swiss albino mice. Commercial antiserum failed to neutralize the lethality and cardiotoxicity of the toxin. However, calcium and magnesium effectively neutralized the lethal action.

  17. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray crystallographic analysis of two vascular apoptosis-inducing proteins (VAPs) from Crotalus atrox venom

    SciTech Connect

    Igarashi, Tomoko; Oishi, Yuko; Araki, Satohiko; Mori, Hidezo; Takeda, Soichi

    2006-07-01

    Vascular apoptosis-inducing protein 1 (VAP1) and VAP2 from C. atrox venom were crystallized in variety of different crystal forms. Diffraction data sets were obtained to 2.5 and 2.15 Å resolution for VAP1 and VAP2, respectively. VAPs are haemorrhagic snake-venom toxins belonging to the reprolysin family of zinc metalloproteinases. In vitro, VAPs induce apoptosis specifically in cultured vascular endothelial cells. VAPs have a modular structure that bears structural homology to mammalian ADAMs (a disintegrin and metalloproteinases). VAP1 is a homodimer with a MW of 110 kDa in which the monomers are connected by a single disulfide bridge. VAP2 is homologous to VAP1 and exists as a monomer with a MW of 55 kDa. In the current study, several crystal forms of VAP1 and VAP2 were obtained using the vapour-diffusion method and diffraction data sets were collected using SPring-8 beamlines. The best crystals of VAP1 and VAP2 generated data sets to 2.5 and 2.15 Å resolution, respectively.

  18. Study on development of Vipera lebetina snake anti-venom in chicken egg yolk for passive immunization.

    PubMed

    Zolfagharian, Hossein; Dounighi, Naser Mohammadpour

    2015-01-01

    Chicken egg yolk antibodies against Vipera lebetina venom were evaluated for their antivenom potential. White leghorn hens were immunized with detoxified V. lebetina venom (γ-irradiated venom). The detoxified venom (200 μg) was mixed with an equal volume of complete Freund's adjuvant and was injected intramuscularly into the hens. The antibodies showed high activity (1.6 LD50/mL) in egg yolks after 12 d of venom injection. The eggs were collected after 12 days, and the egg yolks were removed and washed with purified water to remove any contamination with egg whites. The purification was performed using a method described by Maya Devi et al., followed by gel filtration (Sephadex G-50). The purity and molecular weight of antivenom antibodies (IgY) were determined using electrophoresis, and the molecular weight was found to be approximately 185 kDa. The potency of IgY was 6 LD50/mL (mice), i.e., 1 mL of IgY could neutralize 43.8 μg of standard V. lebetina venom). Our results showed that chicken egg yolk antibodies were effective in neutralizing the lethality and several pharmacological effects of V. lebetina venom and could be used for developing effective antivenom.

  19. Study on development of Vipera lebetina snake anti-venom in chicken egg yolk for passive immunization

    PubMed Central

    Zolfagharian, Hossein; Dounighi, Naser Mohammadpour

    2015-01-01

    Chicken egg yolk antibodies against Vipera lebetina venom were evaluated for their antivenom potential. White leghorn hens were immunized with detoxified V. lebetina venom (γ-irradiated venom). The detoxified venom (200 μg) was mixed with an equal volume of complete Freund's adjuvant and was injected intramuscularly into the hens. The antibodies showed high activity (1.6 LD50/mL) in egg yolks after 12 d of venom injection. The eggs were collected after 12 days, and the egg yolks were removed and washed with purified water to remove any contamination with egg whites. The purification was performed using a method described by Maya Devi et al., followed by gel filtration (Sephadex G-50). The purity and molecular weight of antivenom antibodies (IgY) were determined using electrophoresis, and the molecular weight was found to be approximately 185 kDa. The potency of IgY was 6 LD50/mL (mice), i.e., 1 mL of IgY could neutralize 43.8 μg of standard V. lebetina venom). Our results showed that chicken egg yolk antibodies were effective in neutralizing the lethality and several pharmacological effects of V. lebetina venom and could be used for developing effective antivenom. PMID:25700656

  20. Evaluation of three Brazilian antivenom ability to antagonize myonecrosis and hemorrhage induced by Bothrops snake venoms in a mouse model.

    PubMed

    da Silva, Noelson M V; Arruda, Emerson Z; Murakami, Yugo L B; Moraes, Raphael A M; El-Kik, Camila Z; Tomaz, Marcelo A; Fernandes, Fabrício F A; Oliveira, Clayton Z; Soares, Andreimar M; Giglio, Jose R; Melo, Paulo A

    2007-08-01

    Despite preventing death after snakebites, there is little evidence that polyvalent antivenoms (PAVs) protect against myotoxicity and local damages. We evaluated antibothropic Brazilian PAVs from three manufacturers against the myotoxicity and hemorrhagic activity of Bothrops jararacussu and B. jararaca venoms, respectively, by using two protocols: preincubation of PAVs with venom, and i.v. pretreatment with PAVs, prior to the venom inoculation. In this investigation, we used doses of PAVs ranging from 0.4 to 4.0mL/mg of venom equivalent up to 10 times the amount recommended by the producers for the clinical practice in Brazil. In our preincubation protocol in vivo, PAVs antagonized myotoxicity of B. jararacussu venom by 40-95%, while our pretreatment protocol antagonized myotoxic activity by 0-60%. Preincubation of antivenoms with B. jararaca venom antagonized its hemorrhagic activity by 70-95%, while pretreatment antagonized hemorrhagic activity by 10-50%. Although all PAVs demonstrated partial antagonism against both venoms, the magnitude of these effects varied greatly among the manufactures. The results suggest that the current clinical doses of these PAVs may have negligible antimyotoxic effect.

  1. [Biological and immunological researches on snake venom. V. Application of the immunochemical technics to the titration of specific antibodies to the alpha toxin of Naja nigricollis venom (author's transl)].

    PubMed

    Mangalo, R; Fouque, F; Boquet, P

    1977-01-01

    In order to establish a simple method to titrate antitoxin antibodies in the antivenom sera, we suggest a new immunochemical technic. To a constant dose of a pure toxin extracted from a snake venom, increasing volumes of specific immune serum are added so as an excess of toxin remains free. This residual toxin is titrated by electroimmunodiffusion technic according to Laurell or by radial immunodiffusion method of Mancini. The experimental results in vitro are compared to those obtained in vivo. If a given volume of immune serum neutralize X microgram of toxin by the in vivo technic it will combine in vitro to 2 X or 1.2 X of the same toxin, respectively if we refer to electroimmunodiffusion or to radial immunodiffusion technic results.

  2. Genus Calliophis of Asiatic coral snakes: A deficiency of venom cross-reactivity and neutralization against seven regional elapid antivenoms.

    PubMed

    Tan, Choo Hock; Liew, Jia Lee; Tan, Kae Yi; Tan, Nget Hong

    2016-10-01

    Venoms of Calliophis bivirgata and Calliophis intestinalis exhibited moderate binding activities toward Neuro Bivalent Antivenom (Taiwan) but not the other six elapid monovalent or bivalent antivenoms available in the region. All antivenoms failed to neutralize C. bivirgata venom lethality in mice. The findings indicate the need to validate antivenom cross-reactivity with in vivo cross-neutralization, and imply that distinct antigens of Calliophis venoms should be incorporated in the production of a pan-regional poly-specific antivenom.

  3. Venom Proteins of the Parasitoid Wasp Nasonia vitripennis: Recent Discovery of an Untapped Pharmacopee

    PubMed Central

    Danneels, Ellen L.; Rivers, David B.; de Graaf, Dirk C.

    2010-01-01

    Adult females of Nasonia vitripennis inject a venomous mixture into its host flies prior to oviposition. Recently, the entire genome of this ectoparasitoid wasp was sequenced, enabling the identification of 79 venom proteins. The next challenge will be to unravel their specific functions, but based on homolog studies, some predictions already can be made. Parasitization has an enormous impact on hosts physiology of which five major effects are discussed in this review: the impact on immune responses, induction of developmental arrest, increases in lipid levels, apoptosis and nutrient releases. The value of deciphering this venom is also discussed. PMID:22069597

  4. Effects of Animal Venoms and Toxins on Hallmarks of Cancer.

    PubMed

    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.

  5. 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

  6. Characterization of toxins from the broad-banded water snake Helicops angulatus (Linnaeus, 1758): isolation of a cysteine-rich secretory protein, Helicopsin.

    PubMed

    Estrella, Amalid; Sánchez, Elda E; Galán, Jacob A; Tao, W Andy; Guerrero, Belsy; Navarrete, Luis F; Rodríguez-Acosta, Alexis

    2011-04-01

    Helicops angulatus (broad-banded water snake) according to recent proposals is presently cited in the family Dipsadidae, subfamily Xenodontinae, forming the tribe Hydropsini along with the genera Hydrops and Pseudoeryx. The current work characterizes the proteolytic and neurotoxic activities of H. angulatus crude toxins from salivary excretion (SE) and describes the isolation and identification of a cysteine-rich secretory protein (CRISP) called helicopsin. The SE lethal dose (LD₅₀) was 5.3 mg/kg; however, the SE did not contain hemorrhagic activity. Helicopsin was purified using activity-guided, Superose 12 10/300 GL molecular exclusion, Mono Q10 ion exchange, and Protein Pak 60 molecular exclusion. Sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) showed a highly purified band of approximately 20 kDa. The minimal lethal dose for helicopsin was 0.4 mg/kg. Liquid chromatography mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) analysis identified 2 unique peptides MEWYPEAAANAER and YTQIVWYK, representing a protein sequence (deleted homology) belonging to cysteine-rich secretory proteins, which are conserved in snake venoms (CRISPs). CRISPs are a large family of cysteine-rich secretory proteins found in various organisms and participate in diverse biological processes. Helicopsin exhibited robust neurotoxic activity as evidenced by immediate death (~8 min) due to respiratory paralysis in NIH mice. These observations for helicopsin purified from H. angulatus provide further evidence of the extensive distribution of highly potent neurotoxins in the Colubroidea superfamily of snakes than previously described.

  7. [Molecular cloning and analysis of cDNA sequences encoding serine proteinase and Kunitz type inhibitor in venom gland of Vipera nikolskii viper].

    PubMed

    Ramazanova, A S; Fil'kin, S Iu; Starkov, V G; Utkin, Iu N

    2011-01-01

    Serine proteinases and Kunitz type inhibitors are widely represented in venoms of snakes from different genera. During the study of the venoms from snakes inhabiting Russia we have cloned cDNAs encoding new proteins belonging to these protein families. Thus, a new serine proteinase called nikobin was identified in the venom gland of Vipera nikolskii viper. By amino acid sequence deduced from the cDNA sequence, nikobin differs from serine proteinases identified in other snake species. Nikobin amino acid sequence contains 15 unique substitutions. This is the first serine proteinase of viper from Vipera genus for which a complete amino acid sequence established. The cDNA encoding Kunitz type inhibitor was also cloned. The deduced amino acid sequence of inhibitor is homologous to those of other proteins from that snakes of Vipera genus. However there are several unusual amino acid substitutions that might result in the change of biological activity of inhibitor.

  8. Defensins and the convergent evolution of platypus and reptile venom genes.

    PubMed

    Whittington, Camilla M; Papenfuss, Anthony T; Bansal, Paramjit; Torres, Allan M; Wong, Emily S W; Deakin, Janine E; Graves, Tina; Alsop, Amber; Schatzkamer, Kyriena; Kremitzki, Colin; Ponting, Chris P; Temple-Smith, Peter; Warren, Wesley C; Kuchel, Philip W; Belov, Katherine

    2008-06-01

    When the platypus (Ornithorhynchus anatinus) was first discovered, it was thought to be a taxidermist's hoax, as it has a blend of mammalian and reptilian features. It is a most remarkable mammal, not only because it lays eggs but also because it is venomous. Rather than delivering venom through a bite, as do snakes and shrews, male platypuses have venomous spurs on each hind leg. The platypus genome sequence provides a unique opportunity to unravel the evolutionary history of many of these interesting features. While searching the platypus genome for the sequences of antimicrobial defensin genes, we identified three Ornithorhynchus venom defensin-like peptide (OvDLP) genes, which produce the major components of platypus venom. We show that gene duplication and subsequent functional diversification of beta-defensins gave rise to these platypus OvDLPs. The OvDLP genes are located adjacent to the beta-defensins and share similar gene organization and peptide structures. Intriguingly, some species of snakes and lizards also produce venoms containing similar molecules called crotamines and crotamine-like peptides. This led us to trace the evolutionary origins of other components of platypus and reptile venom. Here we show that several venom components have evolved separately in the platypus and reptiles. Convergent evolution has repeatedly selected genes coding for proteins containing specific structural motifs as templates for venom molecules.

  9. Effects of PI and PIII Snake Venom Haemorrhagic Metalloproteinases on the Microvasculature: A Confocal Microscopy Study on the Mouse Cremaster Muscle

    PubMed Central

    Herrera, Cristina; Voisin, Mathieu-Benoit; Escalante, Teresa; Rucavado, Alexandra; Nourshargh, Sussan

    2016-01-01

    The precise mechanisms by which Snake Venom Metalloproteinases (SVMPs) disrupt the microvasculature and cause haemorrhage have not been completely elucidated, and novel in vivo models are needed. In the present study, we compared the effects induced by BaP1, a PI SVMP isolated from Bothrops asper venom, and CsH1, a PIII SVMP from Crotalus simus venom, on cremaster muscle microvasculature by topical application of the toxins on isolated tissue (i.e., ex vivo model), and by intra-scrotal administration of the toxins (i.e., in vivo model). The whole tissue was fixed and immunostained to visualize the three components of blood vessels by confocal microscopy. In the ex vivo model, BaP1 was able to degrade type IV collagen and laminin from the BM of microvessels. Moreover, both SVMPs degraded type IV collagen from the BM in capillaries to a higher extent than in PCV and arterioles. CsH1 had a stronger effect on type IV collagen than BaP1. In the in vivo model, the effect of BaP1 on type IV collagen was widespread to the BM of arterioles and PCV. On the other hand, BaP1 was able to disrupt the endothelial barrier in PCV and to increase vascular permeability. Moreover, this toxin increased the size of gaps between pericytes in PCV and created new gaps between smooth muscle cells in arterioles in ex vivo conditions. These effects were not observed in the case of CsH1. In conclusion, our findings demonstrate that both SVMPs degrade type IV collagen from the BM in capillaries in vivo. Moreover, while the action of CsH1 is more directed to the BM of microvessels, the effects of BaP1 are widespread to other microvascular components. This study provides new insights in the mechanism of haemorrhage and other pathological effects induced by these toxins. PMID:27992592

  10. Biochemical Characterization and Pharmacological Properties of New Basic PLA2 BrTX-I Isolated from Bothrops roedingeri (Roedinger's Lancehead) Mertens, 1942, Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Gomes Heleno, Mauricio Aurelio; Baldasso, Paulo Aparecido; Ponce-Soto, Luis Alberto; Marangoni, Sérgio

    2013-01-01

    BrTX-I, a PLA2, was purified from Bothrops roedingeri venom after only one chromatographic step using reverse-phase HPLC on μ-Bondapak C-18 column. A molecular mass of 14358.69 Da was determined by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. Amino acid analysis showed a high content of hydrophobic and basic amino acids as well as 14 half-cysteine residues. The total amino acid sequence was obtained using SwissProt database and showed high amino acid sequence identity with other PLA2 from snake venom. The amino acid composition showed that BrTX-I has a high content of Lys, Tyr, Gly, Pro, and 14 half-Cys residues, typical of a basic PLA2. BrTX-I presented PLA2 activity and showed a minimum sigmoidal behavior, reaching its maximal activity at pH 8.0, 35–45°C, and required Ca2+. In vitro, the whole venom and BrTX-I caused a neuromuscular blockade in biventer cervicis preparations in a similar way to other Bothrops species. BrTX-I induced myonecrosis and oedema-forming activity analyzed through injection of the purified BrTX-I in mice. Since BrTX-I exerts a strong proinflammatory effect, the enzymatic phospholipid hydrolysis might be relevant for these phenomena; incrementing levels of IL-1, IL-6, and TNFα were observed at 15 min, 30 min, one, two, and six hours postinjection, respectively. PMID:23509747

  11. Purification and characterization of tenerplasminin-1, a serine peptidase inhibitor with antiplasmin activity from the coral snake (Micrurus tener tener) venom

    PubMed Central

    Vivas, Jeilyn; Ibarra, Carlos; Salazar, Ana M.; Neves-Ferreira, Ana G.C.; Sánchez, Elda E.; Perales, Jonás; Rodríguez-Acosta, Alexis; Guerrero, Belsy

    2015-01-01

    A plasmin inhibitor, named tenerplasminin-1 (TP1), was isolated from Micrurus tener tener (Mtt) venom. It showed a molecular mass of 6542 Da, similarly to Kunitz-type serine peptidase inhibitors. The amidolytic activity of plasmin (0.5 nM) on synthetic substrate S-2251 was inhibited by 91% following the incubation with TP1 (1 nM). Aprotinin (2 nM) used as the positive control of inhibition, reduced the plasmin amidolytic activity by 71%. Plasmin fibrinolytic activity (0.05 nM) was inhibited by 67% following incubation with TP1 (0.1 nM). The degradation of fibrinogen chains induced by plasmin, trypsin or elastase was inhibited by TP1 at a 1:2, 1:4 and 1:20 enzyme:inhibitor ratio, respectively. On the other hand, the proteolytic activity of crude Mtt venom on fibrinogen chains, previously attributed to metallopeptidases, was not abolished by TP1. The tPA-clot lysis assay showed that TP1 (0.2 nM) acts like aprotinin (0.4 nM) inducing a delay in lysis time and lysis rate which may be associated with the inhibition of plasmin generated from the endogenous plasminogen activation. TP1 is the first serine protease plasmin-like inhibitor isolated from Mtt snake venom which has been characterized in relation to its mechanism of action, formation of a plasmin:TP1 complex and therapeutic potential as anti-fibrinolytic agent, a biological characteristic of great interest in the field of biomedical research. They could be used to regulate the fibrinolytic system in pathologies such as metastatic cancer, parasitic infections, hemophilia and other hemorrhagic syndromes, in which an intense fibrinolytic activity is observed. PMID:26419785

  12. Therapeutic efficacy and molecular mechanisms of snake (Walterinnesia aegyptia) venom-loaded silica nanoparticles in the treatment of breast cancer- and prostate cancer-bearing experimental mouse models.

    PubMed

    Badr, Gamal; Al-Sadoon, Mohamed K; Rabah, Danny M

    2013-12-01

    The treatment of drug-resistant cancer is a clinical challenge, and thus screening for novel anticancer drugs is critically important. We recently demonstrated a strong enhancement of the antitumor activity of snake (Walterinnesia aegyptia) venom (WEV) in vitro in breast carcinoma, prostate cancer, and multiple myeloma cell lines but not in normal cells when the venom was combined with silica nanoparticles (WEV+NP). In the present study, we investigated the in vivo therapeutic efficacy of WEV+NP in breast cancer- and prostate cancer-bearing experimental mouse models. Xenograft breast and prostate tumor mice models were randomized into 4 groups for each cancer model (10 mice per group) and were treated with vehicle (control), NP, WEV, or WEV+NP daily for 28 days post tumor inoculation. The tumor volumes were monitored throughout the experiment. On Day 28 post tumor inoculation, breast and prostate tumor cells were collected and either directly cultured for flow cytometry analysis or lysed for Western blot and ELISA analysis. Treatment with WEV+NP or WEV alone significantly reduced both breast and prostate tumor volumes compared to treatment with NP or vehicle alone. Compared to treatment with WEV alone, treatment of breast and prostate cancer cells with WEV+NP induced marked elevations in the levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS), hydroperoxides, and nitric oxide; robust reductions in the levels of the chemokines CXCL9, CXCL10, CXCL12, CXCL13, and CXCL16 and decreased surface expression of their cognate chemokine receptors CXCR3, CXCR4, CXCR5, and CXCR6; and subsequent reductions in the chemokine-dependent migration of both breast and prostate cancer cells. Furthermore, we found that WEV+NP strongly inhibited insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1)- and epidermal growth factor (EGF)-mediated proliferation of breast and prostate cancer cells, respectively, and enhanced the induction of apoptosis by increasing the activity of caspase-3,-8, and -9 in both breast and

  13. North American snake envenomation in the dog and cat.

    PubMed

    Gilliam, Lyndi L; Brunker, Jill

    2011-11-01

    Snake envenomation can be a cause of significant morbidity in dogs and cats in North America. Being familiar with the venomous snakes in your area and understanding the mechanisms of action of their venom will allow for successful treatment of envenomation cases. Treatment of snake envenomation revolves around supportive care in mild to moderate cases and venom neutralization with antivenom in severe cases. Dogs and cats envenomated by North American snakes have a good prognosis if treated appropriately.

  14. Rapid Purification and Procoagulant and Platelet Aggregating Activities of Rhombeobin: A Thrombin-Like/Gyroxin-Like Enzyme from Lachesis muta rhombeata Snake Venom

    PubMed Central

    Torres-Huaco, Frank Denis; Werneck, Cláudio C.; Vicente, Cristina Pontes; Vassequi-Silva, Talita; Nery-Diez, Ana Cláudia Coelho; Mendes, Camila B.; Antunes, Edson; Marangoni, Sérgio; Damico, Daniela C. S.

    2013-01-01

    We report a rapid purification method using one-step chromatography of SVSP Rhombeobin (LMR-47) from Lachesis muta rhombeata venom and its procoagulant activities and effects on platelet aggregation. The venom was fractionated by a single chromatographic step in RP-HPLC on a C8 Discovery BIO Wide Pore, showing high degree of molecular homogeneity with molecular mass of 47035.49 Da. Rhombeobin showed amidolytic activity upon BAρNA, with a broad optimum pH (7–10) and was stable in solution up to 60°C. The amidolytic activity was inhibited by serine proteinase inhibitors and reducing agents, but not chelating agents. Rhombeobin showed high coagulant activity on mice plasma and bovine fibrinogen. The deduced amino acid sequence of Rhombeobin showed homology with other SVSPs, especially with LM-TL (L. m. muta) and Gyroxin (C. d. terrificus). Rhombeobin acts, in vitro, as a strong procoagulant enzyme on mice citrated plasma, shortening the APTT and PT tests in adose-dependent manner. The protein showed, “ex vivo”, a strong defibrinogenating effect with 1 µg/animal. Lower doses activated the intrinsic and extrinsic coagulation pathways and impaired the platelet aggregation induced by ADP. Thus, this is the first report of a venom component that produces a venom-induced consumptive coagulopathy (VICC). PMID:24058917

  15. Scorpion venoms in gastric cancer

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Xiao-Ying; Zhang, Pei-Ying

    2016-01-01

    Venom secretions from snakes, scorpions, spiders and bees, have been widely applied in traditional medicine and current biopharmaceutical research. Possession of anticancer potential is another novel discovery for animal venoms and toxins. An increasing number of studies have shown the anticancer effects of venoms and toxins of snakes, and scorpions in vitro and in vivo, which were achieved mainly through the inhibition of cancer growth, arrest of cell cycle, induction of apoptosis and suppression of cancer metastasis. However, more evidence is needed to support this concept and the mechanisms of anticancer actions are not clearly understood. The present review is focused on the recant updates on anticancer venom research. PMID:27900054

  16. Animal venom studies: Current benefits and future developments

    PubMed Central

    Utkin, Yuri N

    2015-01-01

    Poisonous organisms are represented in many taxa, including kingdom Animalia. During evolution, animals have developed special organs for production and injection of venoms. Animal venoms are complex mixtures, compositions of which depend on species producing venom. The most known and studied poisonous terrestrial animals are snakes, scorpions and spiders. Among marine animals, these are jellyfishes, anemones and cone snails. The toxic substances in the venom of these animals are mainly of protein and peptide origin. Recent studies have indicated that the single venom may contain up to several hundred different components producing diverse physiological effects. Bites or stings by certain poisonous species result in severe envenomations leading in some cases to death. This raises the problem of bite treatment. The most effective treatment so far is the application of antivenoms. To enhance the effectiveness of such treatments, the knowledge of venom composition is needed. On the other hand, venoms contain substances with unique biological properties, which can be used both in basic science and in clinical applications. The best example of toxin application in basic science is α-bungarotoxin the discovery of which made a big impact on the studies of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. Today compositions of venom from many species have already been examined. Based on these data, one can conclude that venoms contain a large number of individual components belonging to a limited number of structural types. Often minor changes in the amino acid sequence give rise to new biological properties. Change in the living conditions of poisonous animals lead to alterations in the composition of venoms resulting in appearance of new toxins. At the same time introduction of new methods of proteomics and genomics lead to discoveries of new compounds, which may serve as research tools or as templates for the development of novel drugs. The application of these sensitive and

  17. Animal venom studies: Current benefits and future developments.

    PubMed

    Utkin, Yuri N

    2015-05-26

    Poisonous organisms are represented in many taxa, including kingdom Animalia. During evolution, animals have developed special organs for production and injection of venoms. Animal venoms are complex mixtures, compositions of which depend on species producing venom. The most known and studied poisonous terrestrial animals are snakes, scorpions and spiders. Among marine animals, these are jellyfishes, anemones and cone snails. The toxic substances in the venom of these animals are mainly of protein and peptide origin. Recent studies have indicated that the single venom may contain up to several hundred different components producing diverse physiological effects. Bites or stings by certain poisonous species result in severe envenomations leading in some cases to death. This raises the problem of bite treatment. The most effective treatment so far is the application of antivenoms. To enhance the effectiveness of such treatments, the knowledge of venom composition is needed. On the other hand, venoms contain substances with unique biological properties, which can be used both in basic science and in clinical applications. The best example of toxin application in basic science is α-bungarotoxin the discovery of which made a big impact on the studies of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. Today compositions of venom from many species have already been examined. Based on these data, one can conclude that venoms contain a large number of individual components belonging to a limited number of structural types. Often minor changes in the amino acid sequence give rise to new biological properties. Change in the living conditions of poisonous animals lead to alterations in the composition of venoms resulting in appearance of new toxins. At the same time introduction of new methods of proteomics and genomics lead to discoveries of new compounds, which may serve as research tools or as templates for the development of novel drugs. The application of these sensitive and

  18. Expression, purification, and analysis of three recombinant ECD disintegrins (r-colombistatins) from P-III class snake venom metalloproteinases affecting platelet aggregation and SK-MEL-28 cell adhesion

    PubMed Central

    Suntravat, Montamas; Helmke, Thomas J.; Atphaisit, Chairat; Cuevas, Esteban; Lucena, Sara E.; Uzcátegui, Nestor L.; Sánchez, Elda E.; Rodriguez-Acosta, Alexis

    2016-01-01

    Crotalid venoms are rich sources of components that affect the hemostatic system. Snake venom metalloproteinases are zinc-dependent enzymes responsible for hemorrhage that also interfere with hemostasis. The disintegrin domain is a part of snake venom metalloproteinases, which involves the binding of integrin receptors. Integrins play an essential role in cancer survival and invasion, and they have been major targets for drug development and design. Both native and recombinant disintegrins have been widely investigated for their anti-cancer activities in biological systems as well as in vitro and in vivo systems. Here, three new cDNAs encoding ECD disintegrin-like domains of metalloproteinase precursor sequences obtained from a Venezuelan mapanare (Bothrops colombiensis) venom gland cDNA library have been cloned. Three different N- and C-terminal truncated ECD disintegrin-like domains of metalloproteinases named colombistatins 2, 3, and 4 were amplified by PCR, cloned into a pGEX-4T-1 vector, expressed in Escherichia coli BL21, and tested for inhibition of platelet aggregation and inhibition of adhesion of human skin melanoma (SK-Mel-28) cancer cell lines on collagen I. Purified recombinant colombistatins 2, 3, and 4 were able to inhibit ristocetin- and collagen-induced platelet aggregation. r-Colombistatins 2 showed the most potent inhibiting SK-Mel-28 cancer cells adhesion to collagen. These results suggest that colombistatins may have utility in the development of therapeutic tools in the treatment of melanoma cancers and also thrombotic diseases. PMID:27641750

  19. Venomics of Tropidolaemus wagleri, the sexually dimorphic temple pit viper: Unveiling a deeply conserved atypical toxin arsenal

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Choo Hock; Tan, Kae Yi; Yap, Michelle Khai Khun; Tan, Nget Hong

    2017-01-01

    Tropidolaemus wagleri (temple pit viper) is a medically important snake in Southeast Asia. It displays distinct sexual dimorphism and prey specificity, however its venomics and inter-sex venom variation have not been thoroughly investigated. Applying reverse-phase HPLC, we demonstrated that the venom profiles were not significantly affected by sex and geographical locality (Peninsular Malaya, insular Penang, insular Sumatra) of the snakes. Essentially, venoms of both sexes share comparable intravenous median lethal dose (LD50) (0.56–0.63 μg/g) and cause neurotoxic envenomation in mice. LCMS/MS identified six waglerin forms as the predominant lethal principles, comprising 38.2% of total venom proteins. Fourteen other toxin-protein families identified include phospholipase A2, serine proteinase, snaclec and metalloproteinase. In mice, HPLC fractions containing these proteins showed insignificant contribution to the overall venom lethality. Besides, the unique elution pattern of approximately 34.5% of non-lethal, low molecular mass proteins (3–5 kDa) on HPLC could be potential biomarker for this primitive crotalid species. Together, the study unveiled the venom proteome of T. wagleri that is atypical among many pit vipers as it comprises abundant neurotoxic peptides (waglerins) but little hemotoxic proteinases. The findings also revealed that the venom is relatively well conserved intraspecifically despite the drastic morphological differences between sexes. PMID:28240232

  20. Venomics of Tropidolaemus wagleri, the sexually dimorphic temple pit viper: Unveiling a deeply conserved atypical toxin arsenal.

    PubMed

    Tan, Choo Hock; Tan, Kae Yi; Yap, Michelle Khai Khun; Tan, Nget Hong

    2017-02-27

    Tropidolaemus wagleri (temple pit viper) is a medically important snake in Southeast Asia. It displays distinct sexual dimorphism and prey specificity, however its venomics and inter-sex venom variation have not been thoroughly investigated. Applying reverse-phase HPLC, we demonstrated that the venom profiles were not significantly affected by sex and geographical locality (Peninsular Malaya, insular Penang, insular Sumatra) of the snakes. Essentially, venoms of both sexes share comparable intravenous median lethal dose (LD50) (0.56-0.63 μg/g) and cause neurotoxic envenomation in mice. LCMS/MS identified six waglerin forms as the predominant lethal principles, comprising 38.2% of total venom proteins. Fourteen other toxin-protein families identified include phospholipase A2, serine proteinase, snaclec and metalloproteinase. In mice, HPLC fractions containing these proteins showed insignificant contribution to the overall venom lethality. Besides, the unique elution pattern of approximately 34.5% of non-lethal, low molecular mass proteins (3-5 kDa) on HPLC could be potential biomarker for this primitive crotalid species. Together, the study unveiled the venom proteome of T. wagleri that is atypical among many pit vipers as it comprises abundant neurotoxic peptides (waglerins) but little hemotoxic proteinases. The findings also revealed that the venom is relatively well conserved intraspecifically despite the drastic morphological differences between sexes.

  1. Comparison of venom composition and biological activities of the subspecies Crotalus lepidus lepidus, Crotalus lepidus klauberi and Crotalus lepidus morulus from Mexico.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Romero, Gerardo; Rucavado, Alexandra; Lazcano, David; Gutiérrez, José María; Borja, Miguel; Lomonte, Bruno; Garza-García, Yolanda; Zugasti-Cruz, Alejandro

    2013-09-01

    The rock rattlesnakes Crotalus lepidus comprise a group (lepidus, klauberi, morulus and maculosus) of poorly known mountain cold-tolerant snakes in Mexico. In particular, Crotalus lepidus morulus is a snake endemic of the northeast of Mexico, whereas Crotalus lepidus klauberi and C. l. lepidus are distributed in some regions of the north and central Mexico and southern U. S. Until now very little data are available from C. lepidus subspecies from Mexico, as the terrain inhabited by these snakes is generally steep and rugged. In this work, we have determined some biochemical and biological properties of C. l. morulus, C. l. klauberi and C. l. lepidus crude venoms. Some minor differences in venoms were noted in SDS-PAGE, HPLC profile and MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry analysis. Partial sequences of metalloproteinases, phospholipases A₂ (PLA₂) and galactose-specific lectins were identified in the venoms. Venoms of C. l. klauberi and C. l. lepidus had significantly higher hemorrhagic and lethal activities than C. l. morulus venom. Proteolytic activity in azocasein was higher in C. l. morulus venom, whereas gelatin hydrolysis was higher in C. l. klauberi. Fibrinogenolytic and PLA₂ activities were very similar in all venoms tested. The histological observations in the gastrocnemius muscle damaged by venoms from all the subspecies confirmed myonecrotic and hemorrhagic activities (at 3 and 24 h), which resulted in a poor regenerative response after 14 days. However, C. l. lepidus and C. l. klauberi venom induced a higher increase in the plasma activity of creatine kinase (CK), evidencing higher myotoxicity, whereas paw edema-inducing activity was higher in C. l. lepidus venom. The results indicate that the venoms from the three subspecies have similar protein profiles in electrophoresis, HPLC and molecular weight determinations. However, differences were found in the biological activities in mice. Notably, the venoms of C. l. lepidus and C. l. klauberi present higher

  2. [A survey on the venomous snakes of the vicinity of Kindia (Guinea) and considerations on the treatment of snakebite].

    PubMed

    Baldé, M C; Mané, Y; Trape, J F

    2009-02-01

    Between June and December 2004, snake collections were undertaken in eight villages of the vicinity of Kindia, an area of Guinea Conakry where the incidence of snakebite is among the highest reported in the world. A total of 916 specimens were collected, including 90 Elapidae (9.8 %) and 174 Viperidae (19.0%). The Black Mamba Dendroaspis polylepis was represented by eight specimens, i.e. almost 1% of the snakes collected. This species, which is considered as very rare in West Africa, appears common in this area of Guinea. The current difficulties for the treatment of snakebite due to the high increase of the cost of antivenom therapy are discussed.

  3. Venomics: integrative venom proteomics and beyond.

    PubMed

    Calvete, Juan J

    2017-02-20

    Venoms are integrated phenotypes that evolved independently in, and are used for predatory and defensive purposes by, a wide phylogenetic range of organisms. The same principles that contribute to the evolutionary success of venoms, contribute to making the study of venoms of great interest in such diverse fields as evolutionary ecology and biotechnology. Evolution is profoundly contingent, and nature also reinvents itself continuosly. Changes in a complex phenotypic trait, such as venom, reflect the influences of prior evolutionary history, chance events, and selection. Reconstructing the natural history of venoms, particularly those of snakes, which will be dealt with in more detail in this review, requires the integration of different levels of knowledge into a meaningful and comprehensive evolutionary framework for separating stochastic changes from adaptive evolution. The application of omics technologies and other disciplines have contributed to a qualitative and quantitative advance in the road map towards this goal. In this review we will make a foray into the world of animal venoms, discuss synergies and complementarities of the different approaches used in their study, and identify current bottlenecks that prevent inferring the evolutionary mechanisms and ecological constraints that molded snake venoms to their present-day variability landscape.

  4. Safe Handling of Snakes in an ED Setting.

    PubMed

    Cockrell, Melanie; Swanson, Kristofer; Sanders, April; Prater, Samuel; von Wenckstern, Toni; Mick, JoAnn

    2017-01-01

    Efforts to improve consistency in management of snakes and venomous snake bites in the emergency department (ED) can improve patient and staff safety and outcomes, as well as improve surveillance data accuracy. The emergency department at a large academic medical center identified an opportunity to implement a standardized process for snake disposal and identification to reduce staff risk exposure to snake venom from snakes patients brought with them to the ED.

  5. The amino acid sequence of a weak trypsin inhibitor B from Dendroaspis Polylepis polylepis (black mamba) venom.

    PubMed

    Strydom, D J; Joubert, F J

    1981-10-01

    The sequence of protein B, a weak trypsin inhibitor from black mamba venom was determined. The sequence differs much from other proteinase inhibitors of snake venom, bovine pancreas, snail and turtle egg. The phylogenetic relationship of B and its homologues, the basic pancreatic trypsin inhibitor (Kunitz-type group, was investigated. The elapid snake proteins are grouped on a separate branch from the turtle egg - bovine - snail group, the viper inhibitor and the B-chain of beta-bungarotoxin each being a unique position.

  6. Neutralizing properties of Musa paradisiaca L. (Musaceae) juice on phospholipase A2, myotoxic, hemorrhagic and lethal activities of crotalidae venoms.

    PubMed

    Borges, M H; Alves, D L F; Raslan, D S; Piló-Veloso, D; Rodrigues, V M; Homsi-Brandeburgo, M I; de Lima, M E

    2005-04-08

    The use of plants as medicine has been referred to since ancient peoples, perhaps as early as Neanderthal man. Plants are a source of many biologically active products and nowadays they are of great interest to the pharmaceutical industry. The study of how people of different culture use plants in particular ways has led to the discovery of important new medicines. In this work, we verify the possible activity of Musa paradisiaca L. (Musaceae) against the toxicity of snake venoms. Musa paradisiaca, an important source of food in the world, has also been reported to be popularly used as an anti-venom. Interaction of Musa paradisiaca extract (MsE) with snake venom proteins has been examined in this study. Phospholipase A2 (PLA2), myotoxic and hemorrhagic activities, including lethality in mice, induced by crotalidae venoms were significantly inhibited when different amounts of MsE were mixed with these venoms before assays. On the other hand, mice that received MsE and venoms without previous mixture or by separated routes were not protected against venom toxicity. Partial chemical characterization of MsE showed the presence of polyphenols and tannins and they are known to non-specifically inactivate proteins. We suggest that these compounds can be responsible for the in vitro inhibition of the toxic effects of snake venoms. In conclusion, according to our results, using mice as experimental model, MsE does not show protection against the toxic effects of snake venoms in vivo, but if was very effective when the experiments were done in vitro.

  7. Acetylcholine Receptor Binding Characteristics of Snake and Cone Snail Venom Postsynaptic Neurotoxins: Further Studies with a Non-Radioactive Assay

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1993-01-01

    binding) results (BURDEN et at.. 1975: PETERSON, 1989: BARCHAN et al.. 1992). Obviously, the most reliable correlation between an in vivo and in vitro...SCHIMIDT "as particularly appreciated REFERENCES BARCHAN . D.. KACHALSKY. S.. NEUMANNv. D_. VOGFL.ý Z.. OVADIA. NI.. KOCHIXA. E. and [--.(itis. S. 1 192...Peptides isolated from the venom of’ Coitus xi’ographus block neuromuscular transmission. Neurosca, Lett. 24, 57-62. NEUMANN. D., BARCHAN . D.. FRIDKIN

  8. Proteomic Characterization and Comparison of Malaysian Tropidolaemus wagleri and Cryptelytrops purpureomaculatus Venom Using Shotgun-Proteomics.

    PubMed

    Zainal Abidin, Syafiq Asnawi; Rajadurai, Pathmanathan; Chowdhury, Md Ezharul Hoque; Ahmad Rusmili, Muhamad Rusdi; Othman, Iekhsan; Naidu, Rakesh

    2016-10-18

    Tropidolaemus wagleri and Cryptelytrops purpureomaculatus are venomous pit viper species commonly found in Malaysia. Tandem mass spectrometry analysis of the crude venoms has detected different proteins in T. wagleri and C. purpureomaculatus. They were classified into 13 venom protein families consisting of enzymatic and nonenzymatic proteins. Enzymatic families detected in T. wagleri and C. purpureomaculatus venom were snake venom metalloproteinase, phospholipase A₂, ʟ-amino acid oxidase, serine proteases, 5'-nucleotidase, phosphodiesterase, and phospholipase B. In addition, glutaminyl cyclotransferase was detected in C. purpureomaculatus. C-type lectin-like proteins were common nonenzymatic components in both species. Waglerin was present and unique to T. wagleri-it was not in C. purpureomaculatus venom. In contrast, cysteine-rich secretory protein, bradykinin-potentiating peptide, and C-type natriuretic peptide were present in C. purpureomaculatus venom. Composition of the venom proteome of T. wagleri and C. purpureomaculatus provides useful information to guide production of effective antivenom and identification of proteins with potential therapeutic applications.

  9. Proteomic Characterization and Comparison of Malaysian Tropidolaemus wagleri and Cryptelytrops purpureomaculatus Venom Using Shotgun-Proteomics

    PubMed Central

    Zainal Abidin, Syafiq Asnawi; Rajadurai, Pathmanathan; Chowdhury, Md Ezharul Hoque; Ahmad Rusmili, Muhamad Rusdi; Othman, Iekhsan; Naidu, Rakesh

    2016-01-01

    Tropidolaemus wagleri and Cryptelytrops purpureomaculatus are venomous pit viper species commonly found in Malaysia. Tandem mass spectrometry analysis of the crude venoms has detected different proteins in T. wagleri and C. purpureomaculatus. They were classified into 13 venom protein families consisting of enzymatic and nonenzymatic proteins. Enzymatic families detected in T. wagleri and C. purpureomaculatus venom were snake venom metalloproteinase, phospholipase A2, l-amino acid oxidase, serine proteases, 5′-nucleotidase, phosphodiesterase, and phospholipase B. In addition, glutaminyl cyclotransferase was detected in C. purpureomaculatus. C-type lectin-like proteins were common nonenzymatic components in both species. Waglerin was present and unique to T. wagleri—it was not in C. purpureomaculatus venom. In contrast, cysteine-rich secretory protein, bradykinin-potentiating peptide, and C-type natriuretic peptide were present in C. purpureomaculatus venom. Composition of the venom proteome of T. wagleri and C. purpureomaculatus provides useful information to guide production of effective antivenom and identification of proteins with potential therapeutic applications. PMID:27763534

  10. Blocking effect and crystal structure of natrin toxin, a cysteine-rich secretory protein from Naja atra venom that targets the BKCa channel.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jing; Shen, Bing; Guo, Min; Lou, Xiaohua; Duan, Yuanyuan; Cheng, Xin Ping; Teng, Maikun; Niu, Liwen; Liu, Qun; Huang, Qingqiu; Hao, Quan

    2005-08-02

    Cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRISPs) are widespread in snake venoms. Some members of these CRISPs recently have been found to block L-type Ca(2+) channels or cyclic nucleotide-gated ion (CNG) channels. Here, natrin purified from Naja atra venom, a member of the CRISP family, can induce a further contractile response in the endothelium-denuded thoracic aorta of mouse which has been contracted by a high-K(+) solution. Further experiments show it can block the high-conductance calcium-activated potassium (BK(Ca)) channel in a concentration-dependent manner with an IC(50) of 34.4 nM and a Hill coefficient of 1.02, which suggests that only a single natrin molecule is required to bind an ion channel to block BK(Ca) current. The crystal structure of natrin displaying two domains in tandem shows its cysteine-rich domain (CRD) has relatively independent flexibility, especially for the C-terminal long loop (loop I) of CRD to participate in the interface of two domains. On the basis of previous studies of CNG channel and L-Ca(2+) channel blockers, and the sequence and structural comparison of natrin and stecrisp, the deviation of the vital loop I of CRD is suggested to contribute to different effects of some CRISPs in protein-protein interaction.

  11. Development of Plate Reader and On-Line Microfluidic Screening to Identify Ligands of the 5-Hydroxytryptamine Binding Protein in Venoms

    PubMed Central

    Otvos, Reka A.; Krishnamoorthy Iyer, Janaki; van Elk, René; Ulens, Chris; Niessen, Wilfried M. A.; Somsen, Govert W.; Kini, R. Manjunatha; Smit, August B.; Kool, Jeroen

    2015-01-01

    The 5-HT3 receptor is a ligand-gated ion channel, which is expressed in the nervous system. Its antagonists are used clinically for treatment of postoperative- and radiotherapy-induced emesis and irritable bowel syndrome. In order to better understand the structure and function of the 5-HT3 receptor, and to allow for compound screening at this receptor, recently a serotonin binding protein (5HTBP) was engineered with the Acetylcholine Binding Protein as template. In this study, a fluorescence enhancement assay for 5HTBP ligands was developed in plate-reader format and subsequently used in an on-line microfluidic format. Both assay types were validated using an existing radioligand binding assay. The on-line microfluidic assay was coupled to HPLC via a post-column split which allowed parallel coupling to a mass spectrometer to collect MS data. This high-resolution screening (HRS) system is well suitable for compound mixture analysis. As a proof of principle, the venoms of Dendroapsis polylepis, Pseudonaja affinis and Pseudonaja inframacula snakes were screened and the accurate masses of the found bioactives were established. To demonstrate the subsequent workflow towards structural identification of bioactive proteins and peptides, the partial amino acid sequence of one of the bioactives from the Pseudonaja affinis venom was determined using a bottom-up proteomics approach. PMID:26114334

  12. Development of Plate Reader and On-Line Microfluidic Screening to Identify Ligands of the 5-Hydroxytryptamine Binding Protein in Venoms.

    PubMed

    Otvos, Reka A; Iyer, Janaki Krishnamoorthy; van Elk, René; Ulens, Chris; Niessen, Wilfried M A; Somsen, Govert W; Kini, R Manjunatha; Smit, August B; Kool, Jeroen

    2015-06-24

    The 5-HT3 receptor is a ligand-gated ion channel, which is expressed in the nervous system. Its antagonists are used clinically for treatment of postoperative- and radiotherapy-induced emesis and irritable bowel syndrome. In order to better understand the structure and function of the 5-HT3 receptor, and to allow for compound screening at this receptor, recently a serotonin binding protein (5HTBP) was engineered with the Acetylcholine Binding Protein as template. In this study, a fluorescence enhancement assay for 5HTBP ligands was developed in plate-reader format and subsequently used in an on-line microfluidic format. Both assay types were validated using an existing radioligand binding assay. The on-line microfluidic assay was coupled to HPLC via a post-column split which allowed parallel coupling to a mass spectrometer to collect MS data. This high-resolution screening (HRS) system is well suitable for compound mixture analysis. As a proof of principle, the venoms of Dendroapsis polylepis, Pseudonaja affinis and Pseudonaja inframacula snakes were screened and the accurate masses of the found bioactives were established. To demonstrate the subsequent workflow towards structural identification of bioactive proteins and peptides, the partial amino acid sequence of one of the bioactives from the Pseudonaja affinis venom was determined using a bottom-up proteomics approach.

  13. Proteomic Analysis of the Ontogenetic Variability in Plasma Composition of Juvenile and Adult Bothrops jararaca Snakes

    PubMed Central

    de Morais-Zani, Karen; Grego, Kathleen Fernandes; Tanaka, Aparecida Sadae; Tanaka-Azevedo, Anita Mitico

    2013-01-01

    The ontogenetic variability in venom composition of some snake genera, including Bothrops, as well as the biological implications of such variability and the search of new molecules that can neutralize the toxic components of these venoms have been the subject of many studies. Thus, considering the resistance of Bothrops jararaca to the toxic action of its own venom and the ontogenetic variability in venom composition described in this species, a comparative study of the plasma composition of juvenile and adult B. jararaca snakes was performed through a proteomic approach based on 2D electrophoresis and mass spectrometry, which allowed the identification of proteins that might be present at different levels during ontogenetic development. Among the proteins identified by mass spectrometry, antihemorrhagic factor Bj46a was found only in adult plasma. Moreover, two spots identified as phospholipase A2 inhibitors were significantly increased in juvenile plasma, which can be related to the higher catalytic PLA2 activity shown by juvenile venom in comparison to that of adult snakes. This work shows the o