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Sample records for arthropod venoms

  1. Low cost venom extractor based on Arduino(®) board for electrical venom extraction from arthropods and other small animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Besson, Thomas; Debayle, Delphine; Diochot, Sylvie; Salinas, Miguel; Lingueglia, Eric

    2016-08-01

    Extracting venom from small species is usually challenging. We describe here an affordable and versatile electrical venom extractor based on the Arduino(®) Mega 2560 Board, which is designed to extract venom from arthropods and other small animals. The device includes fine tuning of stimulation time and voltage. It was used to collect venom without apparent deleterious effects, and characterized for the first time the venom of Zoropsis spinimana, a common spider in French Mediterranean regions.

  2. Tropical dermatology: Venomous arthropods and human skin: Part II. Diplopoda, Chilopoda, and Arachnida.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haddad, Vidal; Cardoso, João Luiz Costa; Lupi, Omar; Tyring, Stephen K

    2012-09-01

    Members of arthropod classes Chilopoda (centipedes), Diplopoda (millipedes), and Arachnida (spiders and scorpions) cause tissue injury via bites, stings, and/or a release of toxins. A few members of the Acari subclass of Arachnida (mites and ticks) can transmit a variety of infectious diseases, but this review will cover the noninfectious manifestations of these vectors. Dermatologists should be familiar with the injuries caused by these arthropods in order to initiate proper treatment and recommend effective preventative measures.

  3. On the venom system of centipedes (Chilopoda), a neglected group of venomous animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Undheim, Eivind A B; King, Glenn F

    2011-03-15

    Centipedes are among the oldest extant terrestrial arthropods and are an ecologically important group of soil and leaf litter predators. Despite their abundance and frequent, often painful, encounters with humans, little is known about the venom and venom apparatus of centipedes, although it is apparent that these are both quite different from other venomous lineages. The venom gland can be regarded as an invaginated cuticle and epidermis, consisting of numerous epithelial secretory units each with its own unique valve-like excretory system. The venom contains several different enzymes, but is strikingly different to most other arthropods in that metalloproteases appear to be important. Myotoxic, cardiotoxic, and neurotoxic activities have been described, most of which have been attributed to high molecular weight proteins. Neurotoxic activities are also unusual in that G-protein coupled receptors often seem to be involved, either directly as targets of neurotoxins or indirectly by activating endogenous agonists. These relatively slow responses may be complemented by the rapid effects caused by histamines present in the venom and from endogenous release of histamines induced by venom cytotoxins. The differences probably reflect the ancient and independent evolutionary history of the centipede venom system, although they may also be somewhat exaggerated by the paucity of information available on this largely neglected group.

  4. Centipede Venoms and Their Components: Resources for Potential Therapeutic Applications

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    Md Abdul Hakim

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Venomous animals have evolved with sophisticated bio-chemical strategies to arrest prey and defend themselves from natural predators. In recent years, peptide toxins from venomous animals have drawn considerable attention from researchers due to their surprising chemical, biochemical, and pharmacological diversity. Similar to other venomous animals, centipedes are one of the crucial venomous arthropods that have been used in traditional medicine for hundreds of years in China. Despite signifying pharmacological importance, very little is known about the active components of centipede venoms. More than 500 peptide sequences have been reported in centipede venomous glands by transcriptome analysis, but only a small number of peptide toxins from centipede has been functionally described. Like other venomous animals such as snakes, scorpions, and spiders, the venom of centipedes could be an excellent source of peptides for developing drugs for treatments as well as bio-insecticides for agrochemical applications. Although centipede venoms are yet to be adequately studied, the venom of centipedes as well as their components described to date, should be compiled to help further research. Therefore, based on previous reports, this review focusses on findings and possible therapeutic applications of centipede venoms as well as their components.

  5. Recruitment and diversification of an ecdysozoan family of neuropeptide hormones for black widow spider venom expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCowan, Caryn; Garb, Jessica E

    2014-02-25

    Venoms have attracted enormous attention because of their potent physiological effects and dynamic evolution, including the convergent recruitment of homologous genes for venom expression. Here we provide novel evidence for the recruitment of genes from the Crustacean Hyperglycemic Hormone (CHH) and arthropod Ion Transport Peptide (ITP) superfamily for venom expression in black widow spiders. We characterized latrodectin peptides from venom gland cDNAs from the Western black widow spider (Latrodectus hesperus), the brown widow (Latrodectus geometricus) and cupboard spider (Steatoda grossa). Phylogenetic analyses of these sequences with homologs from other spider, scorpion and wasp venom cDNAs, as well as CHH/ITP neuropeptides, show latrodectins as derived members of the CHH/ITP superfamily. These analyses suggest that CHH/ITP homologs are more widespread in spider venoms, and were recruited for venom expression in two additional arthropod lineages. We also found that the latrodectin 2 gene and nearly all CHH/ITP genes include a phase 2 intron in the same position, supporting latrodectin's placement within the CHH/ITP superfamily. Evolutionary analyses of latrodectins suggest episodes of positive selection along some sequence lineages, and positive and purifying selection on specific codons, supporting its functional importance in widow venom. We consider how this improved understanding of latrodectin evolution informs functional hypotheses regarding its role in black widow venom as well as its potential convergent recruitment for venom expression across arthropods.

  6. [2013 update about arthropod envenomations in French Guyana].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ganteaume, F; Imbert, C

    2014-02-01

    French Guiana, by its geographical situation, its climate and its biodiversity, is often called "the green hell". Indeed, this French department of America shelters a wildlife rich, abundant among which many species of arthropods, some of which are responsible for envenomations. These accidents consist of scorpion's or hymenoptera's stings or spider's bites. The associated clinical aspect is variable, from simple pain to circulatory collapse, or lung oedema. However, symptomatology is generally mild; four deaths associated to arthropod envenomations have been reported in the past 25 years. This article focuses on envenomations in French Guiana, describing favoring human behavior, risks and venoms associated with the main related animal species.

  7. Spider-Venom Peptides as Bioinsecticides

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    Glenn F. King

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Over 10,000 arthropod species are currently considered to be pest organisms. They are estimated to contribute to the destruction of ~14% of the world’s annual crop production and transmit many pathogens. Presently, arthropod pests of agricultural and health significance are controlled predominantly through the use of chemical insecticides. Unfortunately, the widespread use of these agrochemicals has resulted in genetic selection pressure that has led to the development of insecticide-resistant arthropods, as well as concerns over human health and the environment. Bioinsecticides represent a new generation of insecticides that utilise organisms or their derivatives (e.g., transgenic plants, recombinant baculoviruses, toxin-fusion proteins and peptidomimetics and show promise as environmentally-friendly alternatives to conventional agrochemicals. Spider-venom peptides are now being investigated as potential sources of bioinsecticides. With an estimated 100,000 species, spiders are one of the most successful arthropod predators. Their venom has proven to be a rich source of hyperstable insecticidal mini-proteins that cause insect paralysis or lethality through the modulation of ion channels, receptors and enzymes. Many newly characterized insecticidal spider toxins target novel sites in insects. Here we review the structure and pharmacology of these toxins and discuss the potential of this vast peptide library for the discovery of novel bioinsecticides.

  8. New insights on arthropod toxins that potentiate erectile function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nunes, Kenia P; Torres, Fernanda S; Borges, Marcia H; Matavel, Alessandra; Pimenta, Adriano M C; De Lima, Maria E

    2013-07-01

    The use of natural substances for the treatment of diseases or injuries is an ancient practice of many cultures. According to folklore, natural aphrodisiacs may help to raise libido and increase desire. The supposed aphrodisiacs mainly include a plethora of preparations of plants, among other substances. However, the real boundary between myth and reality has not been established yet in most cases and such boundaries must be drawn by scientific methods. A growing interest of the scientific community has been focused on animal venoms, especially those from arthropods, i.e. spiders and scorpions, which cause priapism, a prolonged and painful erection. This review highlights the studies that have been performed with venoms and toxins from arthropods known to cause priapism, among other toxic symptoms, pointing out some pharmacological approaches for better understanding this effect. To date, the venom of some spiders, mainly Phoneutria nigriventer, and scorpions, such as the yellow South American scorpion Tityus serrulatus, among others, have been known to cause priapism. Since erectile dysfunction (ED) is a growing health problem in the world, more common in patients with vascular diseases as diabetes and hypertension, the use of animal venoms and toxins as pharmacological tools could not only shed light to the mechanisms involved in erectile function, but also represent a possible model for new drugs to treat ED. Unfortunately, attempts to correlate the structure of those priapism-related toxins were unfruitful. Such difficulties lie firstly on the poor data concerning purified priapism-related toxins, instead of whole venoms and/or semi-purified fractions, and secondly, on the scarce available primary sequences and structural data, mainly from spider toxins. It has been shown that all these toxins modify the sodium (Na(+)) channel activity, mostly slowing down its inactivation current. Improving the knowledge on the tertiary structure of these toxins could provide

  9. Allergies to Insect Venom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allergies To Insect Venom Facts About Allergies The tendency to develop allergies may be inherited. If you have allergic tendencies and ... lives of those who are sensitive to it...insect venom! Although less common than pollen allergy, insect ...

  10. HYMENOPTERA ALLERGENS: FROM VENOM TO VENOME

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    Edzard eSpillner

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available In Western Europe hymenoptera venom allergy primarily relates to venoms of the honeybee and the common yellow jacket. In contrast to other allergen sources, only a few major components of hymenoptera venoms had been characterized until recently. Improved expression systems and proteomic detection strategies have allowed the identification and characterization of a wide range of additional allergens. The field of hymenoptera venom allergy research has moved rapidly from focusing on venom extract and single major allergens to a molecular understanding of the entire venome as a system of unique and characteristic components. An increasing number of such components has been identified, characterized regarding function and assessed for allergenic potential. Moreover, advanced expression strategies for recombinant production of venom allergens allow selective modification of molecules and provide insight into different types of IgE reactivities and sensitization patterns. The obtained information contributes to an increased diagnostic precision in hymenoptera venom allergy and may serve for monitoring, reevaluation and improvement of current therapeutic strategies.

  11. Containment of arthropod disease vectors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, Thomas W

    2005-01-01

    Effective containment of arthropod vectors of infectious diseases is necessary to prevent transmission of pathogens by released, infected vectors and to prevent vectors that escape from establishing populations that subsequently contribute to increased disease. Although rare, past releases illustrate what can go wrong and justify the need for guidelines that minimize risks. An overview of recommendations for insectary facilities, practices, and equipment is provided, and features of four recently published and increasingly rigorous arthropod containment levels (ACLs 1-4) are summarized. ACL-1 is appropriate for research that constitutes the lowest risk level, including uninfected arthropods or vectors that are infected with micro-organisms that do not cause disease in humans, domestic animals, or wildlife. ACL-2 is appropriate for indigenous and exotic arthropods that represent a moderate risk, including vectors infected or suspected of being infected with biosafety level (BSL)-2 infectious agents and arthropods that have been genetically modified in ways that do not significantly affect their fecundity, survival, host preference, or vector competence. ACL-3 is recommended for arthropods that are or may be infected with BSL-3 infectious agents. ACL-3 places greater emphasis on pathogen containment and more restricted access to the insectary than ACL-2. ACL-4 is intended for arthropods that are infected with the most dangerous BSL-4 infectious agents, which can cause life-threatening illness by aerosol or arthropod bite. Adherence to these guidelines will result in laboratory-based arthropod vector research that minimizes risks and results in important new contributions to applied and basic science.

  12. Quo Vadis Venomics? A Roadmap to Neglected Venomous Invertebrates

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    Bjoern Marcus von Reumont

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Venomics research is being revolutionized by the increased use of sensitive -omics techniques to identify venom toxins and their transcripts in both well studied and neglected venomous taxa. The study of neglected venomous taxa is necessary both for understanding the full diversity of venom systems that have evolved in the animal kingdom, and to robustly answer fundamental questions about the biology and evolution of venoms without the distorting effect that can result from the current bias introduced by some heavily studied taxa. In this review we draw the outlines of a roadmap into the diversity of poorly studied and understood venomous and putatively venomous invertebrates, which together represent tens of thousands of unique venoms. The main groups we discuss are crustaceans, flies, centipedes, non-spider and non-scorpion arachnids, annelids, molluscs, platyhelminths, nemerteans, and echinoderms. We review what is known about the morphology of the venom systems in these groups, the composition of their venoms, and the bioactivities of the venoms to provide researchers with an entry into a large and scattered literature. We conclude with a short discussion of some important methodological aspects that have come to light with the recent use of new -omics techniques in the study of venoms.

  13. Mast cells and IgE in defense against venoms: Possible "good side" of allergy?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galli, Stephen J; Starkl, Philipp; Marichal, Thomas; Tsai, Mindy

    2016-01-01

    Physicians think of mast cells and IgE primarily in the context of allergic disorders, including fatal anaphylaxis. This 'bad side' of mast cells and IgE is so well accepted that it can be difficult to think of them in other contexts, particularly those in which they may have beneficial functions. However, there is evidence that mast cells and IgE, as well as basophils (circulating granulocytes whose functions partially overlap with those of mast cells), can contribute to host defense as components of adaptive type 2 immune responses to helminths, ticks and certain other parasites. Accordingly, allergies often are conceptualized as "misdirected" type 2 immune responses, in which IgE antibodies are produced against any of a diverse group of apparently harmless antigens, as well as against components of animal venoms. Indeed, certain unfortunate patients who have become sensitized to venoms develop severe IgE-associated allergic reactions, including fatal anaphylaxis, upon subsequent venom exposure. In this review, we will describe evidence that mast cells can enhance innate resistance to reptile or arthropod venoms during a first exposure to such venoms. We also will discuss findings indicating that, in mice which survive an initial encounter with venom, acquired type 2 immune responses, IgE antibodies, the high affinity IgE receptor (FcɛRI), and mast cells can contribute to acquired resistance to the lethal effects of both honeybee venom and Russell's viper venom. These findings support the hypothesis that mast cells and IgE can help protect the host against venoms and perhaps other noxious substances.

  14. Methane production in terrestrial arthropods

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hackstein, J.H.P.; Stumm, C.K. (Catholic Univ. of Nijmegen (Netherlands))

    1994-06-07

    The authors have screened more than 110 representatives of the different taxa of terrestrial arthropods for methane production in order to obtain additional information about the origins of biogenic methane. Methanogenic bacteria occur in the hindguts of nearly all tropical representatives of millipedes (Diplopoda), cockroaches (Blattaria), termites (Isoptera), and scarab beetles (Scarabaeidae), while such methanogens are absent from 66 other arthropod species investigated. Three types of symbiosis were found: in the first type, the arthropod's hindgut is colonized by free methanogenic bacteria; in the second type, methanogens are closely associated with chitinous structures formed by the host's hindgut; the third type is mediated by intestinal anaerobic protists with intracellular methanogens. Such symbiotic associations are likely to be a characteristic property of the particular taxon. Since these taxa represent many families with thousands of species, the world populations of methane-producing arthropods constitute an enormous biomass. The authors show that arthropod symbionts can contribute substantially to atmospheric methane.

  15. Snake Venom Metalloproteinases

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    Gâz Florea Şerban Andrei

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available As more data are generated from proteome and transcriptome analysis revealing that metalloproteinases represent most of the Viperid and Colubrid venom components authors decided to describe in a short review a classification and some of the multiple activities of snake venom metalloproteinases. SVMPs are classified in three major classes (P-I, P-II and P-III classes based on the presence of various domain structures and according to their domain organization. Furthermore, P-II and P-III classes were separated in subclasses based on distinctive post-translational modifications. SVMPs are synthesized in a latent form, being activated through a Cys-switch mechanism similar to matrix metalloproteinases. Most of the metalloproteinases of the snake venom are responsible for the hemorrhagic events but also have fibrinogenolytic activity, poses apoptotic activity, activate blood coagulation factor II and X, inhibit platelet aggregation, demonstrating that SVMPs have multiple functions in addition to well-known hemorrhagic function.

  16. Molecular Simulations of Disulfide-Rich Venom Peptides with Ion Channels and Membranes

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    Evelyne Deplazes

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Disulfide-rich peptides isolated from the venom of arthropods and marine animals are a rich source of potent and selective modulators of ion channels. This makes these peptides valuable lead molecules for the development of new drugs to treat neurological disorders. Consequently, much effort goes into understanding their mechanism of action. This paper presents an overview of how molecular simulations have been used to study the interactions of disulfide-rich venom peptides with ion channels and membranes. The review is focused on the use of docking, molecular dynamics simulations, and free energy calculations to (i predict the structure of peptide-channel complexes; (ii calculate binding free energies including the effect of peptide modifications; and (iii study the membrane-binding properties of disulfide-rich venom peptides. The review concludes with a summary and outlook.

  17. Scorpions from Mexico: From Species Diversity to Venom Complexity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santibáñez-López, Carlos E; Francke, Oscar F; Ureta, Carolina; Possani, Lourival D

    2015-12-24

    Scorpions are among the oldest terrestrial arthropods, which are distributed worldwide, except for Antarctica and some Pacific islands. Scorpion envenomation represents a public health problem in several parts of the world. Mexico harbors the highest diversity of scorpions in the world, including some of the world's medically important scorpion species. The systematics and diversity of Mexican scorpion fauna has not been revised in the past decade; and due to recent and exhaustive collection efforts as part of different ongoing major revisionary systematic projects, our understanding of this diversity has changed compared with previous assessments. Given the presence of several medically important scorpion species, the study of their venom in the country is also important. In the present contribution, the diversity of scorpion species in Mexico is revised and updated based on several new systematic contributions; 281 different species are recorded. Commentaries on recent venomic, ecological and behavioral studies of Mexican scorpions are also provided. A list containing the most important peptides identified from 16 different species is included. A graphical representation of the different types of components found in these venoms is also revised. A map with hotspots showing the current knowledge on scorpion distribution and areas explored in Mexico is also provided.

  18. Toxin synergism in snake venoms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Laustsen, Andreas Hougaard

    2016-01-01

    Synergism between venom toxins exists for a range of snake species. Synergism can be derived from both intermolecular interactions and supramolecular interactions between venom components, and can be the result of toxins targeting the same protein, biochemical pathway or physiological process. Few...... simple systematic tools and methods for determining the presence of synergism exist, but include co-administration of venom components and assessment of Accumulated Toxicity Scores. A better understanding of how to investigate synergism in snake venoms may help unravel strategies for developing novel...

  19. Scorpion venoms in gastric cancer

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  20. IgE and mast cells in host defense against parasites and venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mukai, Kaori; Tsai, Mindy; Starkl, Philipp; Marichal, Thomas; Galli, Stephen J

    2016-09-01

    IgE-dependent mast cell activation is a major effector mechanism underlying the pathology associated with allergic disorders. The most dramatic of these IgE-associated disorders is the fatal anaphylaxis which can occur in some people who have developed IgE antibodies to otherwise innocuous antigens, such as those contained in certain foods and medicines. Why would such a highly "maladaptive" immune response develop in evolution and be retained to the present day? Host defense against parasites has long been considered the only beneficial function that might be conferred by IgE and mast cells. However, recent studies have provided evidence that, in addition to participating in host resistance to certain parasites, mast cells and IgE are critical components of innate (mast cells) and adaptive (mast cells and IgE) immune responses that can enhance host defense against the toxicity of certain arthropod and animal venoms, including enhancing the survival of mice injected with such venoms. Yet, in some people, developing IgE antibodies to insect or snake venoms puts them at risk for having a potentially fatal anaphylactic reaction upon subsequent exposure to such venoms. Delineating the mechanisms underlying beneficial versus detrimental innate and adaptive immune responses associated with mast cell activation and IgE is likely to enhance our ability to identify potential therapeutic targets in such settings, not only for reducing the pathology associated with allergic disorders but perhaps also for enhancing immune protection against pathogens and animal venoms.

  1. Mast cells and IgE in defense against venoms: Possible “good side” of allergy?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen J. Galli

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Physicians think of mast cells and IgE primarily in the context of allergic disorders, including fatal anaphylaxis. This ‘bad side’ of mast cells and IgE is so well accepted that it can be difficult to think of them in other contexts, particularly those in which they may have beneficial functions. However, there is evidence that mast cells and IgE, as well as basophils (circulating granulocytes whose functions partially overlap with those of mast cells, can contribute to host defense as components of adaptive type 2 immune responses to helminths, ticks and certain other parasites. Accordingly, allergies often are conceptualized as “misdirected” type 2 immune responses, in which IgE antibodies are produced against any of a diverse group of apparently harmless antigens, as well as against components of animal venoms. Indeed, certain unfortunate patients who have become sensitized to venoms develop severe IgE-associated allergic reactions, including fatal anaphylaxis, upon subsequent venom exposure. In this review, we will describe evidence that mast cells can enhance innate resistance to reptile or arthropod venoms during a first exposure to such venoms. We also will discuss findings indicating that, in mice which survive an initial encounter with venom, acquired type 2 immune responses, IgE antibodies, the high affinity IgE receptor (FcɛRI, and mast cells can contribute to acquired resistance to the lethal effects of both honeybee venom and Russell's viper venom. These findings support the hypothesis that mast cells and IgE can help protect the host against venoms and perhaps other noxious substances.

  2. Arthropod Diversity in a Tropical Forest

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Basset, Yves; Cizek, Lukas; Cuénoud, Philippe;

    2012-01-01

    Most eukaryotic organisms are arthropods. Yet, their diversity in rich terrestrial ecosystems is still unknown. Here we produce tangible estimates of the total species richness of arthropods in a tropical rainforest. Using a comprehensive range of structured protocols, we sampled the phylogenetic......,000 arthropod species. Notably, just 1 hectare of rainforest yields >60% of the arthropod biodiversity held in the wider landscape. Models based on plant diversity fitted the accumulated species richness of both herbivore and nonherbivore taxa exceptionally well. This lends credence to global estimates...

  3. Factors Influencing Arthropod Diversity on Green Roofs

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    Bracha Y. Schindler

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Green roofs have potential for providing substantial habitat to plants, birds, and arthropod species that are not well supported by other urban habitats. Whereas the plants on a typical green roof are chosen and planted by people, the arthropods that colonize it can serve as an indicator of the ability of this novel habitat to support a diverse community of organisms. The goal of this observational study was to determine which physical characteristics of a roof or characteristics of its vegetation correlate with arthropod diversity on the roof. We intensively sampled the number of insect families on one roof with pitfall traps and also measured the soil arthropod species richness on six green roofs in the Boston, MA area. We found that the number of arthropod species in soil, and arthropod families in pitfall traps, was positively correlated with living vegetation cover. The number of arthropod species was not significantly correlated with plant diversity, green roof size, distance from the ground, or distance to the nearest vegetated habitat from the roof. Our results suggest that vegetation cover may be more important than vegetation diversity for roof arthropod diversity, at least for the first few years after establishment. Additionally, we found that even green roofs that are small and isolated can support a community of arthropods that include important functional groups of the soil food web.

  4. A Comparative Analysis of the Venom Gland Transcriptomes of the Fishing Spiders Dolomedes mizhoanus and Dolomedes sulfurous.

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    Xunxun Xu

    Full Text Available Dolomedes sulfurous and Dolomedes mizhoanus are predaceous arthropods catching and feeding on small fish. They live in the same area and have similar habits. Their venoms exhibit some similarities and differences in biochemical and electrophysiological properties. In the present work, we first performed a transcriptomic analysis by constructing the venom gland cDNA library of D. sulfurous and 127 novel putative toxin sequences were consequently identified, which were classified into eight families. This venom gland transcriptome was then compared with that of D. mizhoanus, which revealed that the putative toxins from both spider venoms might have originated from the same gene ancestors although novel toxins were evolved independently in the two spiders. The putative toxins from both spiders contain 6-12 cysteine residues forming seven cysteine patterns. As revealed by blast search, the two venoms are rich in neurotoxins targeting ion channels with pharmacological and therapeutic significance. This study provides insight into the venoms of two closely related species of spider, which will be of use for future investigations into the structure and function of their toxins.

  5. A Comparative Analysis of the Venom Gland Transcriptomes of the Fishing Spiders Dolomedes mizhoanus and Dolomedes sulfurous.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Xunxun; Wang, Hengyun; Zhang, Fang; Hu, Zhaotun; Liang, Songping; Liu, Zhonghua

    2015-01-01

    Dolomedes sulfurous and Dolomedes mizhoanus are predaceous arthropods catching and feeding on small fish. They live in the same area and have similar habits. Their venoms exhibit some similarities and differences in biochemical and electrophysiological properties. In the present work, we first performed a transcriptomic analysis by constructing the venom gland cDNA library of D. sulfurous and 127 novel putative toxin sequences were consequently identified, which were classified into eight families. This venom gland transcriptome was then compared with that of D. mizhoanus, which revealed that the putative toxins from both spider venoms might have originated from the same gene ancestors although novel toxins were evolved independently in the two spiders. The putative toxins from both spiders contain 6-12 cysteine residues forming seven cysteine patterns. As revealed by blast search, the two venoms are rich in neurotoxins targeting ion channels with pharmacological and therapeutic significance. This study provides insight into the venoms of two closely related species of spider, which will be of use for future investigations into the structure and function of their toxins.

  6. Effects of Androctonus crassicauda (Olivier, 1807 (scorpiones: buthidae venom on rats: correlation among acetylcholinesterase activities and electrolytes levels

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    O. Ozkan

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Scorpions can be considered living fossils because they have changed so little during the last 400 million years. They are venomous arthropods of the Arachnida class and regarded as relatives of spiders, ticks and mites. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the toxicity of Androctonus crassicauda (Olivier, 1807 venom and its effects on the acetylcholinesterase (AchE activity and on electrolytes levels in rats. Animals were divided into seven groups of five rats each. Test groups received 250µg/kg of venom solution while control group was treated with 200µl of physiological saline solution (PSS. Blood samples were collected from the animals on the 1st, 2nd 4th, 8th, 12th, and 24th hours after subcutaneous injection of venom. Animals were monitored for 24 hours. Androctonus crassicauda venom significantly reduced AchE activity on the 12th hour when compared with control group. A statistically negative correlation between Na+ and K+ (p<0.05 and a positive correlation between Na+ and CL- (p<0.001 ions levels were observed after the administration of A. crassiccauda venom to rats. We can conclude that the differences in the electrolytes levels are due to acute renal failure, since elimination of toxin occurs primarily via the kidney.

  7. Noninsect Arthropods in Popular Music

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    Joseph R. Coelho

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available The occurrence of noninsect arthropods in popular music was examined in order to explore human attitudes toward these species, especially as compared to insects. Crustaceans were the most commonly referenced taxonomic group in artist names, album titles and cover art, followed by spiders and scorpions. The surprising prevalence of crustaceans may be related to the palatability of many of the species. Spiders and scorpions were primarily used for shock value, as well as totemic qualities of strength and ferocity. Spiders were the most abundant group among song titles, perhaps because of their familiarity to the general public. Three noninsect arthropod album titles were found from the early 1970s, then none appear until 1990. Older albums are difficult to find unless they are quite popular, and the resurgence of albums coincides with the rise of the internet. After 1990, issuance of such albums increased approximately linearly. Giant and chimeric album covers were the most common of themes, indicating the use of these animals to inspire fear and surprise. The lyrics of select songs are presented to illustrate the diversity of sentiments present, from camp spookiness to edibility.

  8. The colonization of land by animals: molecular phylogeny and divergence times among arthropods

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    Lyons-Weiler Maureen

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The earliest fossil evidence of terrestrial animal activity is from the Ordovician, ~450 million years ago (Ma. However, there are earlier animal fossils, and most molecular clocks suggest a deep origin of animal phyla in the Precambrian, leaving open the possibility that animals colonized land much earlier than the Ordovician. To further investigate the time of colonization of land by animals, we sequenced two nuclear genes, glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase and enolase, in representative arthropods and conducted phylogenetic and molecular clock analyses of those and other available DNA and protein sequence data. To assess the robustness of animal molecular clocks, we estimated the deuterostome-arthropod divergence using the arthropod fossil record for calibration and tunicate instead of vertebrate sequences to represent Deuterostomia. Nine nuclear and 15 mitochondrial genes were used in phylogenetic analyses and 61 genes were used in molecular clock analyses. Results Significant support was found for the unconventional pairing of myriapods (millipedes and centipedes with chelicerates (spiders, scorpions, horseshoe crabs, etc. using nuclear and mitochondrial genes. Our estimated time for the divergence of millipedes (Diplopoda and centipedes (Chilopoda was 442 ± 50 Ma, and the divergence of insects and crustaceans was estimated as 666 ± 58 Ma. Our results also agree with previous studies suggesting a deep divergence (~1100 – 900 Ma for arthropods and deuterostomes, considerably predating the Cambrian Explosion seen in the animal fossil record. Conclusions The consistent support for a close relationship between myriapods and chelicerates, using mitochondrial and nuclear genes and different methods of analysis, suggests that this unexpected result is not an artefact of analysis. We propose the name Myriochelata for this group of animals, which includes many that immobilize prey with venom. Our molecular clock

  9. Privileged frameworks from snake venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reeks, T A; Fry, B G; Alewood, P F

    2015-05-01

    Venom as a form of chemical prey capture is a key innovation that has underpinned the explosive radiation of the advanced snakes (Caenophidia). Small venom proteins are often rich in disulfide bonds thus facilitating stable molecular scaffolds that present key functional residues on the protein surface. New toxin types are initially developed through the venom gland over-expression of normal body proteins, their subsequent gene duplication and diversification that leads to neofunctionalisation as random mutations modify their structure and function. This process has led to preferentially selected (privileged) cysteine-rich scaffolds that enable the snake to build arrays of toxins many of which may lead to therapeutic products and research tools. This review focuses on cysteine-rich small proteins and peptides found in snake venoms spanning natriuretic peptides to phospholipase enzymes, while highlighting their three-dimensional structures and biological functions as well as their potential as therapeutic agents or research tools.

  10. Arthropods (http://www.iaees.org/publications/journals/arthropods/online-version.asp

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    arthropods@iaees.org

    Full Text Available Arthropods ISSN 2224-4255 URL: http://www.iaees.org/publications/journals/arthropods/online-version.asp RSS: http://www.iaees.org/publications/journals/arthropods/rss.xml E-mail: arthropods@iaees.org Editor-in-Chief: WenJun Zhang Aims and Scope ARTHROPODS (ISSN 2224-4255 is an international journal devoted to the publication of articles on various aspects of arthropods, e.g., ecology, biogeography, systematics, biodiversity (species diversity, genetic diversity, et al., conservation, control, etc. The journal provides a forum for examining the importance of arthropods in biosphere (both terrestrial and marine ecosystems and human life in such fields as agriculture, forestry, fishery, environmental management and human health. The scope of Arthropods is wide and embraces all arthropods-insects, arachnids, crustaceans, centipedes, millipedes, and other arthropods. Articles/short communications on new taxa (species, genus, families, orders, etc. and new records of arthropods are particularly welcome. Authors can submit their works to the email box of this journal, arthropods@iaees.org. All manuscripts submitted to this journal must be previously unpublished and may not be considered for publication elsewhere at any time during review period of this journal. Authors are asked to read Author Guidelines before submitting manuscripts. In addition to free submissions from authors around the world, special issues are also accepted. The organizer of a special issue can collect submissions (yielded from a research project, a research group, etc. on a specific research topic, or submissions of a scientific conference for publication of special issue.

  11. Snake venom metalloproteinases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Markland, Francis S; Swenson, Stephen

    2013-02-01

    Recent proteomic analyses of snake venoms show that metalloproteinases represent major components in most of the Crotalid and Viperid venoms. In this chapter we discuss the multiple activities of the SVMPs. In addition to hemorrhagic activity, members of the SVMP family also have fibrin(ogen)olytic activity, act as prothrombin activators, activate blood coagulation factor X, possess apoptotic activity, inhibit platelet aggregation, are pro-inflammatory and inactivate blood serine proteinase inhibitors. Clearly the SVMPs have multiple functions in addition to their well-known hemorrhagic activity. The realization that there are structural variations in the SVMPs and the early studies that led to their classification represents an important event in our understanding of the structural forms of the SVMPs. The SVMPs were subdivided into the P-I, P-II and P-III protein classes. The noticeable characteristic that distinguished the different classes was their size (molecular weight) differences and domain structure: Class I (P-I), the small SVMPs, have molecular masses of 20-30 kDa, contain only a pro domain and the proteinase domain; Class II (P-II), the medium size SVMPs, molecular masses of 30-60 kDa, contain the pro domain, proteinase domain and disintegrin domain; Class III (P-III), the large SVMPs, have molecular masses of 60-100 kDa, contain pro, proteinase, disintegrin-like and cysteine-rich domain structure. Another significant advance in the SVMP field was the characterization of the crystal structure of the first P-I class SVMP. The structures of other P-I SVMPs soon followed and the structures of P-III SVMPs have also been determined. The active site of the metalloproteinase domain has a consensus HEXXHXXGXXHD sequence and a Met-turn. The "Met-turn" structure contains a conserved Met residue that forms a hydrophobic basement for the three zinc-binding histidines in the consensus sequence.

  12. Extraction of venom and venom gland microdissections from spiders for proteomic and transcriptomic analyses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garb, Jessica E

    2014-11-03

    Venoms are chemically complex secretions typically comprising numerous proteins and peptides with varied physiological activities. Functional characterization of venom proteins has important biomedical applications, including the identification of drug leads or probes for cellular receptors. Spiders are the most species rich clade of venomous organisms, but the venoms of only a few species are well-understood, in part due to the difficulty associated with collecting minute quantities of venom from small animals. This paper presents a protocol for the collection of venom from spiders using electrical stimulation, demonstrating the procedure on the Western black widow (Latrodectus hesperus). The collected venom is useful for varied downstream analyses including direct protein identification via mass spectrometry, functional assays, and stimulation of venom gene expression for transcriptomic studies. This technique has the advantage over protocols that isolate venom from whole gland homogenates, which do not separate genuine venom components from cellular proteins that are not secreted as part of the venom. Representative results demonstrate the detection of known venom peptides from the collected sample using mass spectrometry. The venom collection procedure is followed by a protocol for dissecting spider venom glands, with results demonstrating that this leads to the characterization of venom-expressed proteins and peptides at the sequence level.

  13. Cambrian bivalved arthropod reveals origin of arthrodization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Legg, David A; Sutton, Mark D; Edgecombe, Gregory D; Caron, Jean-Bernard

    2012-12-07

    Extant arthropods are diverse and ubiquitous, forming a major constituent of most modern ecosystems. Evidence from early Palaeozoic Konservat Lagerstätten indicates that this has been the case since the Cambrian. Despite this, the details of arthropod origins remain obscure, although most hypotheses regard the first arthropods as benthic predators or scavengers such as the fuxianhuiids or megacheirans ('great-appendage' arthropods). Here, we describe a new arthropod from the Tulip Beds locality of the Burgess Shale Formation (Cambrian, series 3, stage 5) that possesses a weakly sclerotized thorax with filamentous appendages, encased in a bivalved carapace, and a strongly sclerotized, elongate abdomen and telson. A cladistic analysis resolved this taxon as the basal-most member of a paraphyletic grade of nekto-benthic forms with bivalved carapaces. This grade occurs at the base of Arthropoda (panarthropods with arthropodized trunk limbs) and suggests that arthrodization (sclerotization and jointing of the exoskeleton) evolved to facilitate swimming. Predatory and fully benthic habits evolved later in the euarthropod stem-lineage and are plesiomorphically retained in pycnogonids (sea spiders) and euchelicerates (horseshoe crabs and arachnids).

  14. Key to marine arthropod larvae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John A. Fornshell

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The scope of this key is restricted to the larvae of marine arthropods. The key is based solely on their morphology, patterns of body segmentation, numbers of appendages, and mode of locomotion. An effort has been made to treat all traditionally named larval forms, both planktonic and benthic. It is intended that this key be useful for a researcher working with archived museum specimens and therefore, does not include habitat information as a identifying trait, even though this information is usually available in the archived records. Within the phylum Arthropoda there are two sub-phyla and eleven classes having larval stages in the marineenvironment. Where feasible the original names of the various larval types have been used. Because this nomenclature is less commonly used today compared to the past, the more recent taxonomic affinities are included in parentheses after the original larval name. The key includes the following thirty-four larvae: Branchhiopoda nauplii; Cephalocarida nauplii; Mystacocarida nauplii; trilobite larva; protonymphon; hexapod larvae; Remipedia nauplii; nauplius - Y larvae; Cirripedia nauplii; Ascothoracida nauplii; Ostracoda nauplii; Euphausiacea nauplii; Penaeidea nauplii; Cyclopoida nauplii; Calanoida nauplii; Harpacticoida nauplii;Polyarthra nauplii; cypris larva; eryonecius larva; cypris-Y larva; elapthocaris larvae; mysis larvae; lucifer zoea; acetes zoea; acanthosoma larva; phyllosoma; antizoea larva; anomuran zoea; brachyuran zoea; calyptopis larvae; furcilia larva; crytopia larva; puerulus larva; alima larva.

  15. Venomic and pharmacological activity of Acanthoscurria paulensis (Theraphosidae) spider venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mourão, Caroline Barbosa F; Oliveira, Fagner Neves; e Carvalho, Andréa C; Arenas, Claudia J; Duque, Harry Morales; Gonçalves, Jacqueline C; Macêdo, Jéssica K A; Galante, Priscilla; Schwartz, Carlos A; Mortari, Márcia R; Almeida Santos, Maria de Fátima M; Schwartz, Elisabeth F

    2013-01-01

    In the present study we conducted proteomic and pharmacological characterizations of the venom extracted from the Brazilian tarantula Acanthoscurria paulensis, and evaluated the cardiotoxicity of its two main fractions. The molecular masses of the venom components were identified by mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS) after chromatographic separation (HPLC). The lethal dose (LD(50)) was determined in mice. Nociceptive behavior was evaluated by intradermal injection in mice and the edematogenic activity by the rat hind-paw assay. Cardiotoxic activity was evaluated on in situ frog heart and on isolated frog ventricle strip. From 60 chromatographic fractions, 97 distinct components were identified, with molecular masses between 601.4 and 21,932.3 Da. A trimodal molecular mass distribution was observed: 30% of the components within 500-1999 Da, 38% within 3500-5999 Da and 21% within 6500-7999 Da. The LD(50) in mice was 25.4 ± 2.4 μg/g and the effects observed were hypoactivity, anuria, constipation, dyspnea and prostration until death, which occurred at higher doses. Despite presenting a dose-dependent edematogenic activity in the rat hind-paw assay, the venom had no nociceptive activity in mice. Additionally, the venom induced a rapid blockage of electrical activity and subsequent diastolic arrest on in situ frog heart preparation, which was inhibited by pretreatment with atropine. In the electrically driven frog ventricle strip, the whole venom and its low molecular mass fraction, but not the proteic one, induced a negative inotropic effect that was also inhibited by atropine. These results suggest that despite low toxicity, A. paulensis venom can induce severe physiological disturbances in mice.

  16. Opportunity to Improve Public Perceptions of Arthropods and Arthropod-Related Benefits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Bethany A.; Braman, S. Kristine

    2016-01-01

    The general public may not recognize the value of conserving insects and spiders in home landscapes. We surveyed individuals to assess public perceptions of 10 arthropods--nine common insects and one common spider species--and to determine whether arthropod-related attitudes could be altered. Additionally, we collected data on survey respondent…

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  18. Maintenance of scorpions of the genus Tityus Koch (Scorpiones, Buthidae for venom obtention at Instituto Butantan, São Paulo, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. M. Candido

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available This work presents the experience of the Laboratory of Arthropods at Instituto Butantan, which maintains scorpions in captivity in order to obtain the venom used in the production of anti-arachnid serum. Between 1993 and 2000, the laboratory received 24.781 specimens of Tityus serrulatus in order to obtain poison for the production of anti-scorpion serum. In the first extraction, performed by electrical stimulation, the animals gave an average quantity of 0.4 mg venom per specimen. Animal acquisition and involved professional safety are considered. In addition, the captivity, handling and feeding techniques are described, as well as the method and equipment used for venom extraction. It shows the importance of regular campaigns, offering information to the general population in order to motivate these to catch and send alive scorpions to the Institute to assuring a regular entrance of scorpions.

  19. Toxicity of crude and detoxified Tityus serrulatus venom in anti-venom-producing sheep

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferreira, Marina G.; Duarte, Clara G.; Oliveira, Maira S.; Castro, Karen L. P.; Teixeira, Maílson S.; Reis, Lílian P. G.; Zambrano, José A.; Kalapothakis, Evanguedes; Michel, Ana Flávia R. M.; Soto-Blanco, Benito; Chávez-Olórtegui, Carlos

    2016-01-01

    Specific anti-venom used to treat scorpion envenomation is usually obtained from horses after hyperimmunization with crude scorpion venom. However, immunized animals often become ill because of the toxic effects of the immunogens used. This study was conducted to evaluate the toxic and immunogenic activities of crude and detoxified Tityus serrulatus (Ts) venom in sheep during the production of anti-scorpionic anti-venom. Sheep were categorized into three groups: G1, control, immunized with buffer only; G2, immunized with crude Ts venom; and G3, immunized with glutaraldehyde-detoxified Ts venom. All animals were subjected to clinical exams and supplementary tests. G2 sheep showed mild clinical changes, but the other groups tolerated the immunization program well. Specific antibodies generated in animals immunized with either Ts crude venom or glutaraldehyde-detoxified Ts venom recognized the crude Ts venom in both assays. To evaluate the lethality neutralization potential of the produced sera, individual serum samples were pre-incubated with Ts crude venom, then subcutaneously injected into mice. Efficient immune protection of 56.3% and 43.8% against Ts crude venom was observed in G2 and G3, respectively. Overall, the results of this study support the use of sheep and glutaraldehyde-detoxified Ts venom for alternative production of specific anti-venom. PMID:27297422

  20. Sophisticated digestive systems in early arthropods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vannier, Jean; Liu, Jianni; Lerosey-Aubril, Rudy; Vinther, Jakob; Daley, Allison C

    2014-05-02

    Understanding the way in which animals diversified and radiated during their early evolutionary history remains one of the most captivating of scientific challenges. Integral to this is the 'Cambrian explosion', which records the rapid emergence of most animal phyla, and for which the triggering and accelerating factors, whether environmental or biological, are still unclear. Here we describe exceptionally well-preserved complex digestive organs in early arthropods from the early Cambrian of China and Greenland with functional similarities to certain modern crustaceans and trace these structures through the early evolutionary lineage of fossil arthropods. These digestive structures are assumed to have allowed for more efficient digestion and metabolism, promoting carnivory and macrophagy in early arthropods via predation or scavenging. This key innovation may have been of critical importance in the radiation and ecological success of Arthropoda, which has been the most diverse and abundant invertebrate phylum since the Cambrian.

  1. Colubrid Venom Composition: An -Omics Perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Inácio L. M. Junqueira-de-Azevedo

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available 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.

  2. Colubrid Venom Composition: An -Omics Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  3. Microbial control of arthropod-borne disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saldaña, Miguel A; Hegde, Shivanand; Hughes, Grant L

    2017-01-01

    Arthropods harbor a diverse array of microbes that profoundly influence many aspects of host biology, including vector competence. Additionally, symbionts can be engineered to produce molecules that inhibit pathogens. Due to their intimate association with the host, microbes have developed strategies that facilitate their transmission, either horizontally or vertically, to conspecifics. These attributes make microbes attractive agents for applied strategies to control arthropod-borne disease. Here we discuss the recent advances in microbial control approaches to reduce the burden of pathogens such as Zika, Dengue and Chikungunya viruses, and Trypanosome and Plasmodium parasites. We also highlight where further investigation is warranted. PMID:28177042

  4. A molecular palaeobiological exploration of arthropod terrestrialization

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lozano-Fernandez, Jesus; Carton, Robert; Tanner, Alastair R.

    2016-01-01

    amolecular palaeobiological approach, merging molecular and fossil evidence, to elucidate the deepest history of the terrestrial arthropods. We focused on the three independent, Palaeozoic arthropod terrestrialization events (those of Myriapoda, Hexapoda and Arachnida) and showed that a marine route...... to the colonization of land is the most likely scenario.Molecular clock analyses confirmed an origin for the three terrestrial lineages bracketed between the Cambrian and the Silurian. While molecular divergence times for Arachnida are consistent with the fossil record,Myriapoda are inferred to have colonized land...

  5. Microbial control of arthropod-borne disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel A Saldaña

    Full Text Available Arthropods harbor a diverse array of microbes that profoundly influence many aspects of host biology, including vector competence. Additionally, symbionts can be engineered to produce molecules that inhibit pathogens. Due to their intimate association with the host, microbes have developed strategies that facilitate their transmission, either horizontally or vertically, to conspecifics. These attributes make microbes attractive agents for applied strategies to control arthropod-borne disease. Here we discuss the recent advances in microbial control approaches to reduce the burden of pathogens such as Zika, Dengue and Chikungunya viruses, and Trypanosome and Plasmodium parasites. We also highlight where further investigation is warranted.

  6. Pacific Remote Islands MNM: Initial Survey Instructions for Terrestrial Arthropods

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — The purposes of the terrestrial arthropod surveys are to: develop a species list of native and non-native terrestrial arthropods on land portions of the refuge;...

  7. Anaphylaxis to Insect Venom Allergens

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ollert, Markus; Blank, Simon

    2015-01-01

    Anaphylaxis due to Hymenoptera stings is one of the most severe consequences of IgE-mediated hypersensitivity reactions. Although allergic reactions to Hymenoptera stings are often considered as a general model for the underlying principles of allergic disease, diagnostic tests are still hampered......, and to contribute to the understanding of the immunological mechanisms elicited by insect venoms....

  8. Prey orientation and the role of venom availability in the predatory behaviour of the centipede Scolopendra subspinipes mutilans (Arthropoda: Chilopoda).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dugon, Michel M; Arthur, Wallace

    2012-06-01

    Many animal phyla contain clades in which most or all species are venom-injecting predators. An example, in the arthropods, is the class Chilopoda, containing the approximately 3500 species of centipedes. Very little ecological or behavioural work yielding quantitative data has been conducted on centipede predation. Here, we describe a study of this kind. Our experiments employed one centipede species - a large tropical one, Scolopendra subspinipes mutilans - and two species of prey - a cricket, Gryllus assimilis, and a locust, Schistocerca gregaria. We conducted two experiments. The first was aimed at investigating the extent to which the centipedes attacked prey in particular tagmata as opposed to at random over the whole body surface. The results showed that the centipedes were highly selective, preferring to attack the head or thorax rather than the abdomen; indeed, they often reoriented the prey in order to achieve this. A possible explanation of this behaviour is to maximize the speed with which the neurotoxins in the venom reach either the brain or the thoracic ganglia that control limb movement. The second experiment was aimed at investigating the effect of venom-extraction on the attack rate, and specifically at testing if the magnitude of any such effect differed between the two types of prey, which differ considerably in size. The results showed a major effect of venom extraction in relation to both types of prey, but with the time taken to return to a 'normal' attack rate being longer in the case of the larger prey-type, namely the locust. We discuss these results in relation to the 'venom optimization hypothesis' and, more generally, to the principle of minimizing the production/use of venom, which is an energetically expensive resource.

  9. Physical conditions affecting pyrethroid toxicity in arthropods.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jagers op Akkerhuis, G.A.J.M.

    1993-01-01

    The aim of this thesis was to obtain mechanistic information about how the toxicity of pesticides in the field is affected by physical factors, pesticide bioavailability and arthropod behaviour. The pyrethroid insecticide deltamethrin and linyphiid spiders were selected as pesticide-effect model. In

  10. Arthropods vector grapevine trunk disease pathogens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moyo, P; Allsopp, E; Roets, F; Mostert, L; Halleen, F

    2014-10-01

    Arthropod-mediated dispersal of pathogens is known in many cropping systems but has never been demonstrated for grapevine trunk disease pathogens. Arthropods from vineyards were screened for the presence of pathogens associated with Petri disease and esca using cultural and molecular techniques. The ability of the most abundant pathogen-carrying species to inoculate healthy grapevine vascular tissues was also determined. Millipedes and ants were allowed to associate with a DsRed- Express-transformed Phaeomoniella chlamydospora, after which they were exposed to freshly pruned healthy grapevines under controlled conditions and wounds were monitored for subsequent infection. In addition, the possibility of millipede excreta, commonly found on pruning wounds in the field, to act as inoculum source was determined. A diverse arthropod fauna was associated with declining grapevines and many of these carried trunk disease pathogens. However, spiders, the ant Crematogaster peringueyi, and the millipede Ommattoiulus moreleti were the most abundant pathogen carriers. The ant and millipede species fed on pruning wound sap and effectively transmitted trunk disease pathogens. Millipede excreta contained viable spores of Phaeomoniella chlamydospora and may serve as an inoculum source. Numerous arthropods, including beneficial predators, are potential vectors of grapevine trunk disease pathogens. Our results highlight the need for an integrated approach, including targeted management of ants and millipedes at the time of pruning, to limit the spread of grapevine trunk diseases.

  11. The Biochemical Toxin Arsenal from Ant Venoms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Axel Touchard

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Ants (Formicidae represent a taxonomically diverse group of hymenopterans with over 13,000 extant species, the majority of which inject or spray secretions from a venom gland. The evolutionary success of ants is mostly due to their unique eusociality that has permitted them to develop complex collaborative strategies, partly involving their venom secretions, to defend their nest against predators, microbial pathogens, ant competitors, and to hunt prey. Activities of ant venom include paralytic, cytolytic, haemolytic, allergenic, pro-inflammatory, insecticidal, antimicrobial, and pain-producing pharmacologic activities, while non-toxic functions include roles in chemical communication involving trail and sex pheromones, deterrents, and aggregators. While these diverse activities in ant venoms have until now been largely understudied due to the small venom yield from ants, modern analytical and venomic techniques are beginning to reveal the diversity of toxin structure and function. As such, ant venoms are distinct from other venomous animals, not only rich in linear, dimeric and disulfide-bonded peptides and bioactive proteins, but also other volatile and non-volatile compounds such as alkaloids and hydrocarbons. The present review details the unique structures and pharmacologies of known ant venom proteinaceous and alkaloidal toxins and their potential as a source of novel bioinsecticides and therapeutic agents.

  12. Exploring the therapeutic potential of jellyfish venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daly, Norelle L; Seymour, Jamie; Wilson, David

    2014-10-01

    The venom of certain jellyfish has long been known to be potentially fatal to humans, but it is only recently that details of the proteomes of these fascinating creatures are emerging. The molecular contents of the nematocysts from several jellyfish species have now been analyzed using proteomic MS approaches and include the analysis of Chironex fleckeri, one of the most venomous jellyfish known. These studies suggest that some species contain toxins related to peptides and proteins found in other venomous creatures. The detailed characterization of jellyfish venom is likely to provide insight into the diversification of toxins and might be a valuable resource in drug design.

  13. The Biochemical Toxin Arsenal from Ant Venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Touchard, Axel; Aili, Samira R; Fox, Eduardo Gonçalves Paterson; Escoubas, Pierre; Orivel, Jérôme; Nicholson, Graham M; Dejean, Alain

    2016-01-20

    Ants (Formicidae) represent a taxonomically diverse group of hymenopterans with over 13,000 extant species, the majority of which inject or spray secretions from a venom gland. The evolutionary success of ants is mostly due to their unique eusociality that has permitted them to develop complex collaborative strategies, partly involving their venom secretions, to defend their nest against predators, microbial pathogens, ant competitors, and to hunt prey. Activities of ant venom include paralytic, cytolytic, haemolytic, allergenic, pro-inflammatory, insecticidal, antimicrobial, and pain-producing pharmacologic activities, while non-toxic functions include roles in chemical communication involving trail and sex pheromones, deterrents, and aggregators. While these diverse activities in ant venoms have until now been largely understudied due to the small venom yield from ants, modern analytical and venomic techniques are beginning to reveal the diversity of toxin structure and function. As such, ant venoms are distinct from other venomous animals, not only rich in linear, dimeric and disulfide-bonded peptides and bioactive proteins, but also other volatile and non-volatile compounds such as alkaloids and hydrocarbons. The present review details the unique structures and pharmacologies of known ant venom proteinaceous and alkaloidal toxins and their potential as a source of novel bioinsecticides and therapeutic agents.

  14. Peptide Toxins in Solitary Wasp Venoms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konno, Katsuhiro; Kazuma, Kohei; Nihei, Ken-ichi

    2016-01-01

    Solitary wasps paralyze insects or spiders with stinging venom and feed the paralyzed preys to their larva. Accordingly, the venoms should contain a variety of constituents acting on nervous systems. However, only a few solitary wasp venoms have been chemically studied despite thousands of species inhabiting the planet. We have surveyed bioactive substances in solitary wasp venoms found in Japan and discovered a variety of novel bioactive peptides. Pompilidotoxins (PMTXs), in the venoms of the pompilid wasps Anoplius samariensis and Batozonellus maculifrons, are small peptides consisting of 13 amino acids without a disulfide bond. PMTXs slowed Na+ channel inactivation, in particular against neuronal type Na+ channels, and were rather selective to the Nav1.6 channel. Mastoparan-like cytolytic and antimicrobial peptides are the major components of eumenine wasp venoms. They are rich in hydrophobic and basic amino acids, adopting a α-helical secondary structure, and showing mast cell degranulating, antimicrobial and hemolytic activities. The venom of the spider wasp Cyphononyx fulvognathus contained four bradykinin-related peptides. They are hyperalgesic and, dependent on the structure, differently associated with B1 or B2 receptors. Further survey led to the isolation of leucomyosuppressin-like FMRFamide peptides from the venoms of the digger wasps Sphex argentatus and Isodontia harmandi. These results of peptide toxins in solitary wasp venoms from our studies are summarized. PMID:27096870

  15. Peptide Toxins in Solitary Wasp Venoms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katsuhiro Konno

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Solitary wasps paralyze insects or spiders with stinging venom and feed the paralyzed preys to their larva. Accordingly, the venoms should contain a variety of constituents acting on nervous systems. However, only a few solitary wasp venoms have been chemically studied despite thousands of species inhabiting the planet. We have surveyed bioactive substances in solitary wasp venoms found in Japan and discovered a variety of novel bioactive peptides. Pompilidotoxins (PMTXs, in the venoms of the pompilid wasps Anoplius samariensis and Batozonellus maculifrons, are small peptides consisting of 13 amino acids without a disulfide bond. PMTXs slowed Na+ channel inactivation, in particular against neuronal type Na+ channels, and were rather selective to the Nav1.6 channel. Mastoparan-like cytolytic and antimicrobial peptides are the major components of eumenine wasp venoms. They are rich in hydrophobic and basic amino acids, adopting a α-helical secondary structure, and showing mast cell degranulating, antimicrobial and hemolytic activities. The venom of the spider wasp Cyphononyx fulvognathus contained four bradykinin-related peptides. They are hyperalgesic and, dependent on the structure, differently associated with B1 or B2 receptors. Further survey led to the isolation of leucomyosuppressin-like FMRFamide peptides from the venoms of the digger wasps Sphex argentatus and Isodontia harmandi. These results of peptide toxins in solitary wasp venoms from our studies are summarized.

  16. Cytotoxicity of Southeast Asian snake venoms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A Jamunaa

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Cytotoxicity of venoms from eleven medically important snakes found in Southeast Asia (Naja kaouthia, Naja siamensis, Naja sumatrana, Ophiophagus hannah, Bungarus candidus, Bungarus fasciatus, Enhydrina schistosa, Calloselasma rhodostoma, Trimeresurus purpureomaculatus and Tropidolaemus sumatranus was determined, based on the MTS cytotoxicity assay, which determines the survival of viable cells in monolayer MDCK and Vero cell cultures upon exposure to the snake venoms. Snake venom toxicity was expressed as the venom dose that killed 50% of the cells (CTC50 under the assay conditions. Venoms of C. rhodostoma (2.6 µg/mL, 1.4 µg/mL and O. hannah were the most cytotoxic (3.8 µg/mL, 1.7 µg/mL whereas N. siamensis venom showed the least cytotoxicity (51.9 µg/mL, 45.7 µg/mL against Vero and MDCK cells, respectively. All the viper venoms showed higher cytotoxic potency towards both Vero and MDCK cell lines, in comparison to krait and cobra venoms. E. schistosa did not cause cytotoxicity towards MDCK or Vero cells at the tested concentrations. The cytotoxicity correlates well with the known differences in the composition of venoms from cobras, kraits, vipers and sea snakes.

  17. Trilobites and the origin of arthropods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cisne, J L

    1974-10-04

    While the question of whether the Arthropoda represent more than one phylum of animals is debatable, the jointed exoskeleton, a fundamental feature of arthropods, evolved independently in two groups that shared a worm-like common ancestor. The two major branches of Arthropoda, the primitively marine TCC and the primitively terrestrial (with one exception) Uniramia, independently arrived at arthropodization as the solution to the same problems of adaptation of the body mechanical system. New discoveries on trilobite anatomy show the unity of TCC as a group that shared a trilobite-like ancestor near the beginning of the Cambrian. With change in the constituency of Arthropoda through geologic time, the ways in which it would be categorized as a taxonomic group have also changed. The seeming isolation of the major modern arthropod groups is in large part an artifact of extinction of primitive intermediate forms such as trilobites which, in the Early Paleozoic, made the Arthropoda more diverse in basic modes of body organization than the group is at present. The appearance of fossilizable hard parts in arthropods resulted from shift in supporting function from the body cavity, primitively a hydrostatic skeleton, to the cuticle, which came to be strengthened in becoming an exoskeleton. Energetic efficiency, more than protection from predators or evolutionary size increase in itself, was probably the impetus behind the transition. On the scale provided by the general evolutionary trend toward progressive specialization of segments, TCC became arthropodized at earlier stages than did Uniramia. Among TCC, the shift may have been driven by the evolution of locomotory and feeding mechanisms that were exclusively geared to an aqueous medium.

  18. Trees as templates for tropical litter arthropod diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donoso, David A; Johnston, Mary K; Kaspari, Michael

    2010-09-01

    Increased tree species diversity in the tropics is associated with even greater herbivore diversity, but few tests of tree effects on litter arthropod diversity exist. We studied whether tree species influence patchiness in diversity and abundance of three common soil arthropod taxa (ants, gamasid mites, and oribatid mites) in a Panama forest. The tree specialization hypothesis proposes that tree-driven habitat heterogeneity maintains litter arthropod diversity. We tested whether tree species differed in resource quality and quantity of their leaf litter and whether more heterogeneous litter supports more arthropod species. Alternatively, the abundance-extinction hypothesis states that arthropod diversity increases with arthropod abundance, which in turn tracks resource quantity (e.g., litter depth). We found little support for the hypothesis that tropical trees are templates for litter arthropod diversity. Ten tree species differed in litter depth, chemistry, and structural variability. However, the extent of specialization of invertebrates on particular tree taxa was low and the more heterogeneous litter between trees failed to support higher arthropod diversity. Furthermore, arthropod diversity did not track abundance or litter depth. The lack of association between tree species and litter arthropods suggests that factors other than tree species diversity may better explain the high arthropod diversity in tropical forests.

  19. Pharmacological action of Australian animal venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodgson, W C

    1997-01-01

    1. Australia has some of the most venomous fauna in the world. Although humans are not usually perceived as being predators against these animals they are often envenomated, accidentally or otherwise. This has led to the development of antivenoms against some of the potentially lethal venoms. However, further understanding of the mechanism(s) of action of these and other venoms is important, not only for developing new treatment strategies but also in the search for novel research tools. 2. The present review discusses the pharmacology of some of the components found in venoms and outlines the research undertaken on some of Australia's venomous animals, with the exception of snakes. 3. Biogenic amines, peptides and enzymes are common venom components and produce a wide range of effects in envenomated humans. For example, respiratory failure observed after envenomation by the box jellyfish (Chirnex fleckeri) and Sydney funnel-web spider (Atrax robustus) is most likely due to potent neurotoxins in the venoms. Stonefish (Synanceja trachynis) and platypus (Ornithorhynchus anatinus) venoms, although not considered lethal, cause severe pain. However, the components responsible for these effects have not been isolated. Venom components, as yet unidentified, may be responsible for the cutaneous necrotic lesions that have been reported after some spider bites (e.g. Lampona cylindrata). Other venoms, such as those of the jumper ant (Myrmecia pilosula) and bull ant (M. pyriformis), may produce only mild skin irritation to the majority of humans but a severe anaphylactic response in sensitized victims. 4. While there has been a renewed interest in toxinology, further research is required to fully elucidate the pharmacological action of many of these venoms.

  20. Researching nature's venoms and poisons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warrell, David A

    2009-09-01

    Our environment hosts a vast diversity of venomous and poisonous animals and plants. Clinical toxinology is devoted to understanding, preventing and treating their effects in humans and domestic animals. In Sri Lanka, yellow oleander (Thevetia peruviana, Sinhala 'kaneru'), a widespread and accessible ornamental shrub, is a popular means of self-harm. Its toxic glycosides resemble those of foxglove, against which therapeutic antibodies have been raised. A randomised placebo-controlled trial proved that this treatment effectively reversed kaneru cardiotoxicity. There are strong scientific grounds for the use of activated charcoal, but encouraging results with multiple-dose activated charcoal were not confirmed by a recent more powerful study. Venom of Russell's viper (Daboia siamensis) in Burma (Myanmar) produces lethal effects in human victims. The case of a 17-year-old rice farmer is described with pathophysiological interpretations. During the first 9 days of hospital admission he suffered episodes of shock, coagulopathy, bleeding, acute renal failure, local tissue necrosis, generally increased capillary permeability and acute symptomatic hypoglycaemia with evidence of acute pituitary/adrenal insufficiency. Antivenom rapidly restored haemostatic function but failed to correct other effects of venom toxins incurred during the 3h before he could be treated.

  1. In-vitro diagnostics of Hymenoptera venom allergy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rueff, F.; Vos, B.; Przybilla, B.

    2013-01-01

    In-vitro diagnostics of Hymenoptera venom allergy Patients with a history of anaphylactic sting reactions require an allergological work-up (history, in-vitro tests, and skin tests) to clarify indications on venom immunotherapy and on the type of venom to be used. To demonstrate a venom sensitisatio

  2. Moving pieces in a venomic puzzle

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Verano-Braga, Thiago; Dutra, Alexandre A A; León, Ileana R

    2013-01-01

    Besides being a public health problem, scorpion venoms have a potential biotechnological application since they contain peptides that may be used as drug leads and/or to reveal novel pharmacological targets. A comprehensive Tityus serrulatus venom proteome study with emphasis on the phosphoproteome...

  3. Folsomia candida (Collembola): a "standard" soil arthropod.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fountain, Michelle T; Hopkin, Steve P

    2005-01-01

    Folsomia candida Willem 1902, a member of the order Collembola (colloquially called springtails), is a common and widespread arthropod that occurs in soils throughout the world. The species is parthenogenetic and is easy to maintain in the laboratory on a diet of granulated dry yeast. F. candida has been used as a "standard" test organism for more than 40 years for estimating the effects of pesticides and environmental pollutants on nontarget soil arthropods. However, it has also been employed as a model for the investigation of numerous other phenomena such as cold tolerance, quality as a prey item, and effects of microarthropod grazing on pathogenic fungi and mycorrhizae of plant roots. In this comprehensive review, aspects of the life history, ecology, and ecotoxicology of F. candida are covered. We focus on the recent literature, especially studies that have examined the effects of soil pollutants on reproduction in F. candida using the protocol published by the International Standards Organization in 1999.

  4. Ecology of herbivorous arthropods in urban landscapes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raupp, Michael J; Shrewsbury, Paula M; Herms, Daniel A

    2010-01-01

    Urbanization affects communities of herbivorous arthropods and provides opportunities for dramatic changes in their abundance and richness. Underlying these changes are creation of impervious surfaces; variation in the density, diversity, and complexity of vegetation; and maintenance practices including pulsed inputs of fertilizers, water, and pesticides. A rich body of knowledge provides theoretical underpinnings for predicting and understanding impacts of urbanization on arthropods. However, relatively few studies have elucidated mechanisms that explain patterns of insect and mite abundance and diversity across urbanization gradients. Published accounts suggest that responses to urbanization are often taxon specific, highly variable, and linked to properties of urbanization that weaken top-down and/or bottom-up processes, thereby destabilizing populations of herbivores and their natural enemies. In addition to revealing patterns in diversity and abundance of herbivores across urbanization gradients, a primary objective of this review is to examine mechanisms underlying these patterns and to identify potential hypotheses for future testing.

  5. Reappraisal of Vipera aspis venom neurotoxicity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elisabeth Ferquel

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The variation of venom composition with geography is an important aspect of intraspecific variability in the Vipera genus, although causes of this variability remain unclear. The diversity of snake venom is important both for our understanding of venomous snake evolution and for the preparation of relevant antivenoms to treat envenomations. A geographic intraspecific variation in snake venom composition was recently reported for Vipera aspis aspis venom in France. Since 1992, cases of human envenomation after Vipera aspis aspis bites in south-east France involving unexpected neurological signs were regularly reported. The presence of genes encoding PLA(2 neurotoxins in the Vaa snake genome led us to investigate any neurological symptom associated with snake bites in other regions of France and in neighboring countries. In parallel, we used several approaches to characterize the venom PLA(2 composition of the snakes captured in the same areas. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We conducted an epidemiological survey of snake bites in various regions of France. In parallel, we carried out the analysis of the genes and the transcripts encoding venom PLA(2s. We used SELDI technology to study the diversity of PLA(2 in various venom samples. Neurological signs (mainly cranial nerve disturbances were reported after snake bites in three regions of France: Languedoc-Roussillon, Midi-Pyrénées and Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur. Genomes of Vipera aspis snakes from south-east France were shown to contain ammodytoxin isoforms never described in the genome of Vipera aspis from other French regions. Surprisingly, transcripts encoding venom neurotoxic PLA(2s were found in snakes of Massif Central region. Accordingly, SELDI analysis of PLA(2 venom composition confirmed the existence of population of neurotoxic Vipera aspis snakes in the west part of the Massif Central mountains. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The association of epidemiological studies to

  6. Synthesis of (-)-callicarpenal, a Potent Arthropod Repellent

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-01

    synthetic derivatives.12 2. Results and discussion Our synthesis of ()-1 departed from the readily available en- antiomeric pure diketone ()-7 (ee...diastereoselectivity. The synthesis of ()-callicarpenal proceeds in 12 steps and 36% overall yield from diketone ()-7. The synthetic strategy utilizes readily...Author’s personal copy Synthesis of ()-callicarpenal, a potent arthropod repellent Taotao Ling a, Jing Xu a, Ryan Smith a, Abbas Ali b, Charles L

  7. Spider-Venom Peptides as Therapeutics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Glenn F. King

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Spiders are the most successful venomous animals and the most abundant terrestrial predators. Their remarkable success is due in large part to their ingenious exploitation of silk and the evolution of pharmacologically complex venoms that ensure rapid subjugation of prey. Most spider venoms are dominated by disulfide-rich peptides that typically have high affinity and specificity for particular subtypes of ion channels and receptors. Spider venoms are conservatively predicted to contain more than 10 million bioactive peptides, making them a valuable resource for drug discovery. Here we review the structure and pharmacology of spider-venom peptides that are being used as leads for the development of therapeutics against a wide range of pathophysiological conditions including cardiovascular disorders, chronic pain, inflammation, and erectile dysfunction.

  8. Pharmacological evaluation of bee venom and melittin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camila G. Dantas

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to identify the pharmacological effects of bee venom and its major component, melittin, on the nervous system of mice. For the pharmacological analysis, mice were treated once with saline, 0.1 or 1.2 mg/kg of bee venom and 0.1 mg/kg of melittin, subcutaneously, 30 min before being submitted to behavioral tests: locomotor activity and grooming (open-field, catalepsy, anxiety (elevated plus-maze, depression (forced swimming test and apomorphine-induced stereotypy. Haloperidol, imipramine and diazepam were administered alone (positive control or as a pre-treatment (haloperidol.The bee venom reduced motor activity and promoted cataleptic effect, in a similar manner to haloperidol.These effects were decreased by the pretreatment with haloperidol. Both melittin and bee venom decreased the apomorphine-induced stereotypies. The data indicated the antipsychotic activity of bee venom and melittin in a murine model.

  9. Spider venomics: implications for drug discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pineda, Sandy S; Undheim, Eivind A B; Rupasinghe, Darshani B; Ikonomopoulou, Maria P; King, Glenn F

    2014-10-01

    Over a period of more than 300 million years, spiders have evolved complex venoms containing an extraordinary array of toxins for prey capture and defense against predators. The major components of most spider venoms are small disulfide-bridged peptides that are highly stable and resistant to proteolytic degradation. Moreover, many of these peptides have high specificity and potency toward molecular targets of therapeutic importance. This unique combination of bioactivity and stability has made spider-venom peptides valuable both as pharmacological tools and as leads for drug development. This review describes recent advances in spider-venom-based drug discovery pipelines. We discuss spider-venom-derived peptides that are currently under investigation for treatment of a diverse range of pathologies including pain, stroke and cancer.

  10. [Bites of venomous snakes in Switzerland].

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  11. Pharmacological Aspects of Vipera xantina palestinae Venom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Momic, Tatjana; Arlinghaus, Franziska T.; Arien-Zakay, Hadar; Katzhendler, Jeoshua; Eble, Johannes A.; Marcinkiewicz, Cezary; Lazarovici, Philip

    2011-01-01

    In Israel, Vipera xantina palestinae (V.x.p.) is the most common venomous snake, accounting for several hundred cases of envenomation in humans and domestic animals every year, with a mortality rate of 0.5 to 2%. In this review we will briefly address the research developments relevant to our present understanding of the structure and function of V.x.p. venom with emphasis on venom disintegrins. Venom proteomics indicated the presence of four families of pharmacologically active compounds: (i) neurotoxins; (ii) hemorrhagins; (iii) angioneurin growth factors; and (iv) different types of integrin inhibitors. Viperistatin, a α1β1selective KTS disintegrin and VP12, a α2β1 selective C-type lectin were discovered. These snake venom proteins represent promising tools for research and development of novel collagen receptor selective drugs. These discoveries are also relevant for future improvement of antivenom therapy towards V.x.p. envenomation. PMID:22174978

  12. [Venomous and poisonous animals. IV. Envenomations by venomous aquatic vertebrates].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bédry, R; De Haro, L

    2007-04-01

    Epidemiological information on marine envenomation is generally less extensive in Europe than in tropical regions where these injuries are more severe and the need for medical advice is more frequent. For these reasons use of regional Poison Control Centers in the area where the injury occurs must be encouraged. The purpose of this review is to describe envenomation by bony fish (lion fish, stone fish, and catfish), cartilaginous fish (stingrays and poisonous sharks), or other venomous aquatic vertebrates (moray-eels and marine snakes). Understanding of these envenomation syndromes is important not only in tropical areas but also in Europe where importation of dangerous species has increased in recent years.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  14. Skimming the surface with Burgess Shale arthropod locomotion

    OpenAIRE

    Minter, Nicholas J.; Mángano, M. Gabriela; Caron, Jean-Bernard

    2011-01-01

    The first arthropod trackways are described from the Middle Cambrian Burgess Shale Formation of Canada. Trace fossils, including trackways, provide a rich source of biological and ecological information, including direct evidence of behaviour not commonly available from body fossils alone. The discovery of large arthropod trackways is unique for Burgess Shale-type deposits. Trackway dimensions and the requisite number of limbs are matched with the body plan of a tegopeltid arthropod. Tegopelt...

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

    OpenAIRE

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

    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 b...

  16. Protease inhibitor in scorpion (Mesobuthus eupeus) venom prolongs the biological activities of the crude venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Hakim; Xiao-Peng, Tang; Yang, Shi-Long; Lu, Qiu-Min; Lai, Ren

    2016-08-01

    It is hypothesized that protease inhibitors play an essential role in survival of venomous animals through protecting peptide/protein toxins from degradation by proteases in their prey or predators. However, the biological function of protease inhibitors in scorpion venoms remains unknown. In the present study, a trypsin inhibitor was purified and characterized from the venom of scorpion Mesobuthus eupeus, which enhanced the biological activities of crude venom components in mice when injected in combination with crude venom. This protease inhibitor, named MeKTT-1, belonged to Kunitz-type toxins subfamily. Native MeKTT-1 selectively inhibited trypsin with a Kivalue of 130 nmol·L(-1). Furthermore, MeKTT-1 was shown to be a thermo-stable peptide. In animal behavioral tests, MeKTT-1 prolonged the pain behavior induced by scorpion crude venom, suggesting that protease inhibitors in scorpion venom inhibited proteases and protect the functionally important peptide/protein toxins from degradation, consequently keeping them active longer. In conclusion, this was the first experimental evidence about the natural existence of serine protease inhibitor in the venom of scorpion Mesobuthus eupeus, which preserved the activity of venom components, suggests that scorpions may use protease inhibitors for survival.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  18. [Venomous and poisonous animals--I. Overview].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chippaux, J P; Goyffon, M

    2006-06-01

    Venomous animals that are able to innoculate or inject venom and poisonous animals that cannot inject venom but are toxic when ingested belong to all zoological groups. They can be encountered worldwide in any ecosystem on land and at sea but they are more common and more dangerous in tropical areas. This first article of a series to appear in the next issues of Medecine Tropicale presents an overview of species involved in envenomations and poisonings. In addition to a brief reviewing geographic risks and circumstances in which bites, stings or ingestion occur, some information is provided about antivenim therapy, the only etiological treatment.

  19. Characterizing Tityus discrepans scorpion venom from a fractal perspective: Venom complexity, effects of captivity, sexual dimorphism, differences among species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Suze, Gina; Sandoval, Moisés; Sevcik, Carlos

    2015-12-15

    A characteristic of venom elution patterns, shared with many other complex systems, is that many their features cannot be properly described with statistical or euclidean concepts. The understanding of such systems became possible with Mandelbrot's fractal analysis. Venom elution patterns were produced using the reversed phase high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) with 1 mg of venom. One reason for the lack of quantitative analyses of the sources of venom variability is parametrizing the venom chromatograms' complexity. We quantize this complexity by means of an algorithm which estimates the contortedness (Q) of a waveform. Fractal analysis was used to compare venoms and to measure inter- and intra-specific venom variability. We studied variations in venom complexity derived from gender, seasonal and environmental factors, duration of captivity in the laboratory, technique used to milk venom.

  20. Ecological venomics: How genomics, transcriptomics and proteomics can shed new light on the ecology and evolution of venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sunagar, Kartik; Morgenstern, David; Reitzel, Adam M; Moran, Yehu

    2016-03-01

    Animal venom is a complex cocktail of bioactive chemicals that traditionally drew interest mostly from biochemists and pharmacologists. However, in recent years the evolutionary and ecological importance of venom is realized as this trait has direct and strong influence on interactions between species. Moreover, venom content can be modulated by environmental factors. Like many other fields of biology, venom research has been revolutionized in recent years by the introduction of systems biology approaches, i.e., genomics, transcriptomics and proteomics. The employment of these methods in venom research is known as 'venomics'. In this review we describe the history and recent advancements of venomics and discuss how they are employed in studying venom in general and in particular in the context of evolutionary ecology. We also discuss the pitfalls and challenges of venomics and what the future may hold for this emerging scientific field.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  2. Echidna venom gland transcriptome provides insights into the evolution of monotreme venom.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emily S W Wong

    Full Text Available Monotremes (echidna and platypus are egg-laying mammals. One of their most unique characteristic is that males have venom/crural glands that are seasonally active. Male platypuses produce venom during the breeding season, delivered via spurs, to aid in competition against other males. Echidnas are not able to erect their spurs, but a milky secretion is produced by the gland during the breeding season. The function and molecular composition of echidna venom is as yet unknown. Hence, we compared the deeply sequenced transcriptome of an in-season echidna crural gland to that of a platypus and searched for putative venom genes to provide clues into the function of echidna venom and the evolutionary history of monotreme venom. We found that the echidna venom gland transcriptome was markedly different from the platypus with no correlation between the top 50 most highly expressed genes. Four peptides found in the venom of the platypus were detected in the echidna transcriptome. However, these genes were not highly expressed in echidna, suggesting that they are the remnants of the evolutionary history of the ancestral venom gland. Gene ontology terms associated with the top 100 most highly expressed genes in echidna, showed functional terms associated with steroidal and fatty acid production, suggesting that echidna "venom" may play a role in scent communication during the breeding season. The loss of the ability to erect the spur and other unknown evolutionary forces acting in the echidna lineage resulted in the gradual decay of venom components and the evolution of a new role for the crural gland.

  3. A molecular palaeobiological exploration of arthropod terrestrialization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carton, Robert; Edgecombe, Gregory D.

    2016-01-01

    Understanding animal terrestrialization, the process through which animals colonized the land, is crucial to clarify extant biodiversity and biological adaptation. Arthropoda (insects, spiders, centipedes and their allies) represent the largest majority of terrestrial biodiversity. Here we implemented a molecular palaeobiological approach, merging molecular and fossil evidence, to elucidate the deepest history of the terrestrial arthropods. We focused on the three independent, Palaeozoic arthropod terrestrialization events (those of Myriapoda, Hexapoda and Arachnida) and showed that a marine route to the colonization of land is the most likely scenario. Molecular clock analyses confirmed an origin for the three terrestrial lineages bracketed between the Cambrian and the Silurian. While molecular divergence times for Arachnida are consistent with the fossil record, Myriapoda are inferred to have colonized land earlier, substantially predating trace or body fossil evidence. An estimated origin of myriapods by the Early Cambrian precedes the appearance of embryophytes and perhaps even terrestrial fungi, raising the possibility that terrestrialization had independent origins in crown-group myriapod lineages, consistent with morphological arguments for convergence in tracheal systems. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Dating species divergences using rocks and clocks’. PMID:27325830

  4. Responses of arthropod populations to warming depend on latitude

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Youngsteadt, Elsa; Ernst, Andrew F.; Dunn, Robert Roberdeau

    2017-01-01

    consisting of a series of urban warming gradients at different latitudes. Specifically, we sampled arthropods from a single common street tree species across temperature gradients in 4 US cities, located from 35.8 to 42.4° latitude. We captured 6746 arthropods in 34 families from 111 sites that varied...

  5. Early Cretaceous arthropods from plattenkalk facies in Mexico

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vega, Francisco J.; Garcia-Barrera, P.; Coutiño, M.; Nyborg, T.; Cifuentes-Ruiz, P.; González-Rodríguez, K.; Martens, A.; Delgado, C.R.; Carbot, G.

    2003-01-01

    Several well-preserved arthropod faunas have been studied in Mexico during the past few years. The purpose of the present note is to outline advances in the study of these arthropods and of their paleoenvironmental implications, from four localities. The age for these localities ranges from the Earl

  6. Repeated Raking of Pine Plantations Alters Soil Arthropod Communities

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    Holly K. Ober

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Terrestrial arthropods in forests are engaged in vital ecosystem functions that ultimately help maintain soil productivity. Repeated disturbance can cause abrupt and irreversible changes in arthropod community composition and thereby alter trophic interactions among soil fauna. An increasingly popular means of generating income from pine plantations in the Southeastern U.S. is annual raking to collect pine litter. We raked litter once per year for three consecutive years in the pine plantations of three different species (loblolly, Pinus taeda; longleaf, P. palustris; and slash, P. elliottii. We sampled arthropods quarterly for three years in raked and un-raked pine stands to assess temporal shifts in abundance among dominant orders of arthropods. Effects varied greatly among orders of arthropods, among timber types, and among years. Distinct trends over time were apparent among orders that occupied both high trophic positions (predators and low trophic positions (fungivores, detritivores. Multivariate analyses demonstrated that raking caused stronger shifts in arthropod community composition in longleaf and loblolly than slash pine stands. Results highlight the role of pine litter in shaping terrestrial arthropod communities, and imply that repeated removal of pine straw during consecutive years is likely to have unintended consequences on arthropod communities that exacerbate over time.

  7. Arthropod Borne Diseases in Imposed War during 1980-88

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    M Khoobdel

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Background: Personnel of military forces have close contact with natural habitat and usually encounter with bite of arthropods and prone to be infected with arthropod borne diseases. The imposed war against Iran was one of the most important and the longest war in the Middle East and even in the world and military people faced various diseases. The aim of this study was to review prevalence of arthropod borne diseases and to collect relevant information and valuable experiences during the imposed war.Methods: The present survey is a historical research and cross-sectional study, focused on arthropod fauna, situation of different arthropod borne diseases and also the ways which military personnel used to protect themselves against them. The information was adopted from valid military health files and also interviewing people who participated in the war.Results: Scabies, cutaneous leishmaniasis, sandfly fever and pediculosis were more prevalent among other arthropod -borne diseases in Iran-Iraq war. Measures to control arthropods and diseases at wartime mainly included: scheduled spraying of pesticides, leishmanization and treatment of patients.Conclusion: Although measures used during the war to control arthropods were proper, however, due to needs and importance of military forces to new equipment and technologies, it is recommended to use deltamethrin-impreg­nated bed net, permethrin treated military uniforms and various insect repellents in future.

  8. Snake oil and venoms for medical research

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  9. Environmental and economic impact of alien terrestrial arthropods in Europe

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    Sibylle Vaes-Petignat

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available In the last decades abundance and importance of invasive alien species has grown continuously due to the undiminished growth of global trade. In most cases, arthropod introductions were unintended and occurred as hitchhikers or contaminants. Alien arthropods can have significant environmental impacts and can be economically costly. To measure these impacts, we expand the generic impact scoring system initially developed for mammals and birds, and applied it to terrestrial arthropods. The scoring of the 77 most widely distributed arthropod species alien to Europe revealed the mite Varroa destructor as the most harmful species, followed by the Chinese longhorn beetle Anoplophora chinensis and the Argentine ant Linepithema humile. The highest environmental impact is through herbivory, disease transmission, and ecosystem impacts. The highest economic impact is on agriculture and human infrastructure. The generic impact scoring system allows comparing impact scores of vertebrates and arthropods, thus serving as a background for decision making processes of policies and stakeholders.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  11. Venom components from Citharischius crawshayi spider (Family Theraphosidae): exploring transcriptome, venomics, and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diego-García, Elia; Peigneur, Steve; Waelkens, Etienne; Debaveye, Sarah; Tytgat, Jan

    2010-08-01

    Despite strong efforts, knowledge about the composition of the venom of many spider species remains very limited. This work is the first report of transcriptome and venom analysis of the African spider Citharischius crawshayi. We used combined protocols of transcriptomics, venomics, and biological assays to characterize the venom and genes expressed in venom glands. A cDNA library of the venom glands was constructed and used to generate expressed sequence tags (ESTs). Sequence comparisons from 236 ESTs revealed interesting and unique sequences, corresponding to toxin-like and other components. Mass spectrometrical analysis of venom fractions showed more than 600 molecular masses, some of which showed toxic activity on crickets and modulated sodium currents in DmNa(v)1 and Na(v)1.6 channels as expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Taken together, our results may contribute to a better understanding of the cellular processes involved in the transcriptome and help us to discover new components from spider venom glands with therapeutic potential.

  12. A study of bacterial contamination of rattlesnake venom

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    E. Garcia-Lima

    1987-03-01

    Full Text Available The authors studied the bacterial contamination of rattlesnake venom isolated from snakes in captivity and wild snakes caught recently. The captive snakes showed a relatively high incidence of bacterial contamination of their venom.

  13. Venom and cnidome ontogeny of the cubomedusae Chironex fleckeri.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McClounan, S; Seymour, J

    2012-12-15

    This is the first study to explore venom and cnidome variation of individual cubomedusae, Chironex fleckeri, of different ages and from different regional locations in relation to feeding ecology. As medusae matured the proportion of mastigophores (those nematocysts containing the lethal venom component) in the cnidome increased, along with proportion of the vertebrate toxic fraction, in the venom profile. This switch in cnidome and venom occurred at the seven to ten tentacle stage. Whole venom was found to be toxic specifically to vertebrate cardiac cells, as opposed to vertebrate skeletal cells, and dose dependent, along with the vertebrate toxic fraction. The venom and cnidome ontogeny, along with venom toxicity, is correlated with C. fleckeri's known feeding ecology. Large and mature C. fleckeri feed predominantly on vertebrates, and have a greater proportion of mastigophores in their cnidome along with more vertebrate toxic fraction in their venom, compared to when they are young and small feeding on invertebrates.

  14. Composition and genomic organization of arthropod Hox clusters

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    Ryan M. Pace

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The ancestral arthropod is believed to have had a clustered arrangement of ten Hox genes. Within arthropods, Hox gene mutations result in transformation of segment identities. Despite the fact that variation in segment number/character was common in the diversification of arthropods, few examples of Hox gene gains/losses have been correlated with morphological evolution. Furthermore, a full appreciation of the variation in the genomic arrangement of Hox genes in extant arthropods has not been recognized, as genome sequences from each major arthropod clade have not been reported until recently. Initial genomic analysis of the chelicerate Tetranychus urticae suggested that loss of Hox genes and Hox gene clustering might be more common than previously assumed. To further characterize the genomic evolution of arthropod Hox genes, we compared the genomic arrangement and general characteristics of Hox genes from representative taxa from each arthropod subphylum. Results In agreement with others, we find arthropods generally contain ten Hox genes arranged in a common orientation in the genome, with an increasing number of sampled species missing either Hox3 or abdominal-A orthologs. The genomic clustering of Hox genes in species we surveyed varies significantly, ranging from 0.3 to 13.6 Mb. In all species sampled, arthropod Hox genes are dispersed in the genome relative to the vertebrate Mus musculus. Differences in Hox cluster size arise from variation in the number of intervening genes, intergenic spacing, and the size of introns and UTRs. In the arthropods surveyed, Hox gene duplications are rare and four microRNAs are, in general, conserved in similar genomic positions relative to the Hox genes. Conclusions The tightly clustered Hox complexes found in the vertebrates are not evident within arthropods, and differential patterns of Hox gene dispersion are found throughout the arthropods. The comparative genomic data continue to

  15. Factors underlying the natural resistance of animals against snake venoms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Moussatché

    1989-01-01

    Full Text Available The existence of mammals and reptilia with a natural resistance to snake venoms is known since a long time. This fact has been subjected to the study by several research workers. Our experiments showed us that in the marsupial Didelphis marsupialis, a mammal highly resistant to the venom of Bothrops jararaca, and other Bothrops venoms, has a genetically origin protein, a alpha-1, acid glycoprotein, now highly purified, with protective action in mice against the jararaca snake venom.

  16. Biochemical and evolutionary aspects of arthropod predation on ferns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balick, Michael J; Furth, David G; Cooper-Driver, Gillian

    1978-01-01

    The widely held assumption that very few arthropods feed on ferns was questioned following field observations of arthropod damage on ferns in the state of Veracruz, Mexico. The extent and type of damage was recorded and it was found that in a measured locality, ferns were no less attacked than the angiospermous flora. As chemistry and arthropod host relationships have been shown to be so closely intertwined, plants collected in the field were analysed for both condensed tannins and cyanogenic glycosides, compounds known to be effective deterrents in temperate climates. Although all ferns tested contained tannins these did not appear to inhibit predation. Cyanogenic glycosides were present in only 3% of the fern species analysed, and it is, therefore, unlikely that they play a significant role as defensive compounds in the ferns examined.A literature search revealed a large number of ferns cited as being arthropod hosts. Approximately 420 named species of arthropods have been recorded, the majority of which are from the orders Coleoptera, Hymenoptera, Lepidoptera, and Hemiptera. Both evolutionary primitive (sawflies) and advanced (moths) arthropods are reported to be present on ferns suggesting possible coevolution of arthropods and ferns both before and after the radiation of angiosperms.

  17. Role of arthropod communities in bioenergy crop litter decomposition†.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zangerl, Arthur R; Miresmailli, Saber; Nabity, Paul; Lawrance, Allen; Yanahan, Alan; Mitchell, Corey A; Anderson-Teixeira, Kristina J; David, Mark B; Berenbaum, May R; DeLucia, Evan H

    2013-10-01

    The extensive land use conversion expected to occur to meet demands for bioenergy feedstock production will likely have widespread impacts on agroecosystem biodiversity and ecosystem services, including carbon sequestration. Although arthropod detritivores are known to contribute to litter decomposition and thus energy flow and nutrient cycling in many plant communities, their importance in bioenergy feedstock communities has not yet been assessed. We undertook an experimental study quantifying rates of litter mass loss and nutrient cycling in the presence and absence of these organisms in three bioenergy feedstock crops-miscanthus (Miscanthus x giganteus), switchgrass (Panicum virgatum), and a planted prairie community. Overall arthropod abundance and litter decomposition rates were similar in all three communities. Despite effective reduction of arthropods in experimental plots via insecticide application, litter decomposition rates, inorganic nitrogen leaching, and carbon-nitrogen ratios did not differ significantly between control (with arthropods) and treatment (without arthropods) plots in any of the three community types. Our findings suggest that changes in arthropod faunal composition associated with widespread adoption of bioenergy feedstock crops may not be associated with profoundly altered arthropod-mediated litter decomposition and nutrient release.

  18. Diversity of arthropod community in transgenic poplar-cotton ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, D J; Lu, Z Y; Liu, J X; Li, C L; Yang, M S

    2015-01-01

    Poplar-cotton agro-ecosystems are the main agricultural planting modes of plain cotton fields in China. Here, we performed a systematic survey of the diversity and population of arthropod communities in four different combination of poplar-cotton eco-systems, including I) non-transgenic poplar and non-transgenic cotton fields; II) non-transgenic poplar and transgenic cotton fields [Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) cotton]; III) Bt transgenic poplar (high insect resistant strain Pb29) and non-transgenic cotton; and IV) transgenic poplar and transgenic cotton fields, over a period of 3 years. Based on the statistical methods used to investigate community ecology, the effects of transgenic ecosystems on the whole structure of the arthropod community, on the structure of arthropods in the nutritive layer, and on the similarity of arthropod communities were evaluated. The main results were as follows: the transgenic poplar-cotton ecosystem has a stronger inhibitory effect on insect pests and has no impact on the structure of the arthropod community, and therefore, maintains the diversity of the arthropod community. The character index of the community indicated that the structure of the arthropod community of the transgenic poplar-cotton ecosystem was better than that of the poplar-cotton ecosystem, and that system IV had the best structure. As for the abundance of nutritional classes, the transgenic poplar-cotton ecosystem was also better than that of the non-transgenic poplar-cotton ecosystem. The cluster analysis and similarity of arthropod communities between the four different transgenic poplar-cotton ecosystems illustrated that the structure of the arthropod community excelled in the small sample of the transgenic poplar-cotton ecosystems.

  19. Venom proteomic and venomous glands transcriptomic analysis of the Egyptian scorpion Scorpio maurus palmatus (Arachnida: Scorpionidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdel-Rahman, Mohamed A; Quintero-Hernandez, Veronica; Possani, Lourival D

    2013-11-01

    Proteomic analysis of the scorpion venom Scorpio maurus palmatus was performed using reverse-phase HPLC separation followed by mass spectrometry determination. Sixty five components were identified with molecular masses varying from 413 to 14,009 Da. The high percentage of peptides (41.5%) was from 3 to 5 KDa which may represent linear antimicrobial peptides and KScTxs. Also, 155 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) were analyzed through construction the cDNA library prepared from a pair of venomous gland. About 77% of the ESTs correspond to toxin-like peptides and proteins with definite open reading frames. The cDNA sequencing results also show the presence of sequences whose putative products have sequence similarity with antimicrobial peptides (24%), insecticidal toxins, β-NaScTxs, κ-KScTxs, α-KScTxs, calcines and La1-like peptides. Also, we have obtained 23 atypical types of venom molecules not recorded in other scorpion species. Moreover, 9% of the total ESTs revealed significant similarities with proteins involved in the cellular processes of these scorpion venomous glands. This is the first set of molecular masses and transcripts described from this species, in which various venom molecules have been identified. They belong to either known or unassigned types of scorpion venom peptides and proteins, and provide valuable information for evolutionary analysis and venomics.

  20. Scorpion Venom and the Inflammatory Response

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vera L. Petricevich

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Scorpion venoms consist of a complex of several toxins that exhibit a wide range of biological properties and actions, as well as chemical compositions, toxicity, and pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic characteristics. These venoms are associated with high morbility and mortality, especially among children. Victims of envenoming by a scorpion suffer a variety of pathologies, involving mainly both sympathetic and parasympathetic stimulation as well as central manifestations such as irritability, hyperthermia, vomiting, profuse salivation, tremor, and convulsion. The clinical signs and symptoms observed in humans and experimental animals are related with an excessive systemic host inflammatory response to stings and stings, respectively. Although the pathophysiology of envenomation is complex and not yet fully understood, venom and immune responses are known to trigger the release of inflammatory mediators that are largely mediated by cytokines. In models of severe systemic inflammation produced by injection of high doses of venom or venoms products, the increase in production of proinflammatory cytokines significantly contributes to immunological imbalance, multiple organ dysfunction and death. The cytokines initiate a cascade of events that lead to illness behaviors such as fever, anorexia, and also physiological events in the host such as activation of vasodilatation, hypotension, and increased of vessel permeability.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cassandra M Modahl

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available 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

  2. Variability of Venom-Neutralizing Properties of Serum from Snakes of the Colubrid Genus Lampropeltis

    Science.gov (United States)

    1992-01-01

    venoms of C. atrx , S. m. bar- potentials for C s. scauhatus (type B) venom bouri, or A. c. mokasen showed persistent (Table 2). inflammation and/or edema...tested, those injected with venom alone. This suggests Harvey (1960) described inhibition of C. atrx that elapid venom myolytic phospholipases Al venom

  3. The Comparison of Effectiveness between Bee Venom and Sweet Bee Venom Therapy on Low back pain with Radiating pain

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    Lee Tae-ho

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available Objective : The aim of this study is to investigate if Sweet Bee Venom therapy has the equal effect in comparison with Bee Venom Therapy on Low back pain with Radiation pain. Methods : Clinical studies were done 24 patients who were treated low back pain with radiation pain to Dept. of Acupuncture & Moxibusition, of Oriental Medicine Se-Myung University from April 1, 2007 to September 30, 2007. Subjects were randomly divided into two groups ; Bee Venom treated group(Group A, n=10, Sweet Bee Venom treatred group(Group B, n=14. In Bee Venom treated group(Group A, we treated patients with dry needle acupuncture and Bee Venom therapy. In Sweet Bee Venom treatred group(Group B, we treated patients with dry needle acupuncture and Sweet Bee Venom therapy. All process of treatment were performed by double blinding method. To estimate the efficacy of controlling pain. we checked Visual Analog Scale(VAS. For evaluating functional change of patients, Straight Leg Raising Test(S.L.R.T was measured. Results :1. In controlling pain, Sweet Bee Venom treatred group(Group B had similar ability in comparison with Bee Venom treated group(Group A. 2. In promoting function, Sweet Bee Venom treatred group(Group B had similar ability in comparison with Bee Venom treated group(Group A. Conclusions : It may be equal effects as compared with using Bee Venom to treat low back pain with radiation pain using Sweet Bee Venom. We can try to treat other disease known to have effect with Bee Venom.

  4. Insecticide-induced hormesis and arthropod pest management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guedes, Raul Narciso C; Cutler, G Christopher

    2014-05-01

    Ecological backlashes such as insecticide resistance, resurgence and secondary pest outbreaks are frequent problems associated with insecticide use against arthropod pest species. The last two have been particularly important in sparking interest in the phenomenon of insecticide-induced hormesis within entomology and acarology. Hormesis describes a biphasic dose-response relationship that is characterized by a reversal of response between low and high doses of a stressor (e.g. insecticides). Although the concept of insecticide-induced hormesis often does not receive sufficient attention, or has been subject to semantic confusion, it has been reported in many arthropod pest species and natural enemies, and has been linked to pest outbreaks and potential problems with insecticide resistance. The study of hormesis remains largely neglected in entomology and acarology. Here, we examined the concept of insecticide-induced hormesis in arthropods, its functional basis and potential fitness consequences, and its importance in arthropod pest management and other areas.

  5. Dynamic evolution of venom proteins in squamate reptiles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  6. Inflammatory effects of snake venom metalloproteinases

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    Catarina de Fátima Pereira Teixeira

    2005-03-01

    Full Text Available Metalloproteinases are abundant enzymes in crotaline and viperine snake venoms. They are relevant in the pathophysiology of envenomation, being responsible for local and systemic hemorrhage frequently observed in the victims. Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMP are zinc-dependent enzymes of varying molecular weights having multidomain organization. Some SVMP comprise only the proteinase domain, whereas others also contain a disintegrin-like domain, cysteine-rich, and lectin domains. They have strong structural similarities with both mammalian matrix metalloproteinases (MMP and members of ADAMs (a disintegrin and metalloproteinase group. Besides hemorrhage, snake venom metalloproteinase induce local myonecrosis, skin damage, and inflammatory reaction in experimental models. Local inflammation is an important characteristic of snakebite envenomations inflicted by viperine and crotaline snake species. Thus, in the recent years there is a growing effort to understand the mechanisms responsible for SVMP-induced inflammatory reaction and the structural determinants of this effect. This short review focuses the inflammatory effects evoked by SVMP.

  7. Quantitative Proteomic Analysis of Venoms from Russian Vipers of Pelias Group: Phospholipases A2 are the Main Venom Components

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergey I. Kovalchuk

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available 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.

  8. Allergen immunotherapy for insect venom allergy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dhami, S; Zaman, H; Varga, Eva-Maria

    2017-01-01

    BACKGROUND: The European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (EAACI) is in the process of developing the EAACI Guidelines on Allergen Immunotherapy (AIT) for the management of insect venom allergy. To inform this process, we sought to assess the effectiveness, cost-effectiveness and safety...... of AIT in the management of insect venom allergy. METHODS: We undertook a systematic review, which involved searching 15 international biomedical databases for published and unpublished evidence. Studies were independently screened and critically appraised using established instruments. Data were...

  9. THE USE OF THE ANTI-VENOM SPECIFIC ANTIBODIES ISOLATED FROM DUCK EGGS FOR INACTIVATION OF THE VIPER VENOM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ADRIANA CRISTE

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The activity of specific anti-venom can be demonstrated using protection test in laboratory mice. Our study aimed to emphasize the possibility of viper venom inactivation by the antibodies produced and isolated from duck eggs and also to the activation concentration of these antibodies. The venom used for inoculation was harvested from two viper species (Vipera ammodytes and Vipera berus. The immunoglobulin extract had a better activity on the venom from Vipera berus compared to the venom from Vipera ammodytes. This could be the result of a better immunological response, as consequence of the immunization with this type of venom, compared to the response recorded when the Vipera ammodytes venom was used. Besides the advantages of low cost, high productivity and reduced risk of anaphylactic shock, the duck eggs also have high activity up to dilutions of 1/16, 1/32, respectively, with specific activity and 100 surviving in individuals which received 3 x DL50.

  10. Long-term primary culture of secretory cells of Bothrops jararaca venom gland for venom production in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamanouye, Norma; Kerchove, Celine Marie; Moura-da-Silva, Ana Maria; Carneiro, Sylvia M; Markus, Regina P

    2006-01-01

    This protocol details the optimal conditions to establish a long-term primary culture of secretory cells from the venom gland of the Bothrops jararaca snake. Furthermore, these conditions allow the production and secretion of venom into the culture medium. Snake venom is a rich source of active molecules and has been used for bioprospection studies. However, obtaining enough venom from snakes is a major obstacle. Secretory cells of venom glands are capable of producing active toxins. Therefore, a culture of secretory cells is a good in vitro system to acquire the venom of snakes without capturing the animal from the wild. The protocol described here provides a rapid (approximately 4 h) and reproducible means of producing sufficient amounts of snake venom for biological investigations.

  11. Determinants of the detrital arthropod community structure

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lessard, J.P.; Sackett, Tara E.; Reynolds, William N.;

    2011-01-01

    Understanding the factors that shape community structure, and whether those factors vary geographically, has a long history in ecology. Because the abiotic environment often varies in predictable ways along elevational gradients, montane systems are ideal to study geographic variation in the dete......Understanding the factors that shape community structure, and whether those factors vary geographically, has a long history in ecology. Because the abiotic environment often varies in predictable ways along elevational gradients, montane systems are ideal to study geographic variation...... in the determinants of community structure. In this study, we first examined the relative importance of environmental gradients, microclimate, and food resources in driving spatial variation in the structure of detrital communities in forests of the southeastern USA. Then, in order to assess whether the determinants...... for the effect of climatic variation along the elevational gradient, food resource addition and microclimate alteration influenced the richness and abundance of some taxa. However, the effect of food resource addition and microclimate alteration on the richness and abundance of arthropods did not vary...

  12. Fossilized venom: the unusually conserved venom profiles of Heloderma species (beaded lizards and gila monsters).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koludarov, Ivan; Jackson, Timothy N W; Sunagar, Kartik; Nouwens, Amanda; Hendrikx, Iwan; Fry, Bryan G

    2014-12-22

    Research into snake venoms has revealed extensive variation at all taxonomic levels. Lizard venoms, however, have received scant research attention in general, and no studies of intraclade variation in lizard venom composition have been attempted to date. Despite their iconic status and proven usefulness in drug design and discovery, highly venomous helodermatid lizards (gila monsters and beaded lizards) have remained neglected by toxinological research. Proteomic comparisons of venoms of three helodermatid lizards in this study has unravelled an unusual similarity in venom-composition, despite the long evolutionary time (~30 million years) separating H. suspectum from the other two species included in this study (H. exasperatum and H. horridum). Moreover, several genes encoding the major helodermatid toxins appeared to be extremely well-conserved under the influence of negative selection (but with these results regarded as preliminary due to the scarcity of available sequences). While the feeding ecologies of all species of helodermatid lizard are broadly similar, there are significant morphological differences between species, which impact upon relative niche occupation.

  13. Fossilized Venom: The Unusually Conserved Venom Profiles of Heloderma Species (Beaded Lizards and Gila Monsters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivan Koludarov

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Research into snake venoms has revealed extensive variation at all taxonomic levels. Lizard venoms, however, have received scant research attention in general, and no studies of intraclade variation in lizard venom composition have been attempted to date. Despite their iconic status and proven usefulness in drug design and discovery, highly venomous helodermatid lizards (gila monsters and beaded lizards have remained neglected by toxinological research. Proteomic comparisons of venoms of three helodermatid lizards in this study has unravelled an unusual similarity in venom-composition, despite the long evolutionary time (~30 million years separating H. suspectum from the other two species included in this study (H. exasperatum and H. horridum. Moreover, several genes encoding the major helodermatid toxins appeared to be extremely well-conserved under the influence of negative selection (but with these results regarded as preliminary due to the scarcity of available sequences. While the feeding ecologies of all species of helodermatid lizard are broadly similar, there are significant morphological differences between species, which impact upon relative niche occupation.

  14. Mediterranean Jellyfish Venoms: A Review on Scyphomedusae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gian Luigi Mariottini

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available The production of natural toxins is an interesting aspect, which characterizes the physiology and the ecology of a number of marine species that use them for defence/offence purposes. Cnidarians are of particular concern from this point of view; their venoms are contained in specialized structures–the nematocysts–which, after mechanical or chemical stimulation, inject the venom in the prey or in the attacker. Cnidarian stinging is a serious health problem for humans in the zones where extremely venomous jellyfish or anemones are common, such as in temperate and tropical oceanic waters and particularly along several Pacific coasts, and severe cases of envenomation, including also lethal cases mainly induced by cubomedusae, were reported. On the contrary, in the Mediterranean region the problem of jellyfish stings is quite modest, even though they can have anyhow an impact on public health and be of importance from the ecological and economic point of view owing to the implications on ecosystems and on some human activities such as tourism, bathing and fishing. This paper reviews the knowledge about the various aspects related to the occurrence and the stinging of the Mediterranean scyphozoan jellyfish as well as the activity of their venoms.

  15. Snake evolution and prospecting of snake venom

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vonk, Freek Jacobus

    2012-01-01

    in this thesis I have shown that snakes have undergone multiple changes in their genome and embryonic development that has provided them with the variation to which natural selection could act. This thesis provides evidence for the variable mechanisms of venom gene evolution, which presumably is muc

  16. Venomous Animals; Are They Important in Iran?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dehghani R.* PhD

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Many reports have indicated the medical importance of animal poisons in Iran. The significance numbers of Iranians are injured from high endemic to sporadic, by venomous snakes, scorpions, wasps, bees, fire and velvet ants, spiders and backswimmer bugs, so their nuisance prevention is an important task.

  17. The role of ecological infrastructure on beneficial arthropods in vineyards

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabrijela Kuštera

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Weeds and non-cultivated plants have a great impact on abundance and diversity of beneficial arthropods in agriculture. The main aim of this work was to study the influence of the ecological infrastructure (meadows and weedy margins on the arthropod composition in vineyard surrounding landscape. Research was carried out from May to October during three years. Sampling took place in the ecological infrastructure of three differently managed vineyards (organic, integrated and extensive. Three zones were chosen in each vineyard (3 m, 10 m, and 30 m from the edge of the vineyard. Samples were taken using a standardised sweep net method. In total, we captured 6032 spiders and 1309 insects belonging to 4 orders and 10 families. Arthropod fauna was numerically dominated by Aranea (82.1%; among insects, Coleoptera was the most abundant taxonomic group (10.6%; Neuroptera showed the lowest value (0.88%. Significant differences were found between sites and zones. Organic vineyard showed the highest abundance of arthropods (92.41% were spiders and in the integrated vineyard there was a 23% of insects. Both the highest abundance of arthropods and the highest Shannon Index value (2.46 was found 3 m away from the edge of the vineyard. Results showed that spiders were the dominant arthropods and ladybugs the dominant insects. Weedy strips near the edge of the vineyard contained a high number of insects and spiders. Our results support the importance of weedy margins in enhancing the population of arthropods as well as in biodiversity promotion. Well-managed field margins could play important role in biological control of vineyard pests.

  18. The role of ecological infrastructure on beneficial arthropods in vineyards

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Franin, K.; Barić, B.; Kuštera, G.

    2016-11-01

    Weeds and non-cultivated plants have a great impact on abundance and diversity of beneficial arthropods in agriculture. The main aim of this work was to study the influence of the ecological infrastructure (meadows and weedy margins) on the arthropod composition in vineyard surrounding landscape. Research was carried out from May to October during three years. Sampling took place in the ecological infrastructure of three differently managed vineyards (organic, integrated and extensive). Three zones were chosen in each vineyard (3 m, 10 m, and 30 m from the edge of the vineyard). Samples were taken using a standardised sweep net method. In total, we captured 6032 spiders and 1309 insects belonging to 4 orders and 10 families. Arthropod fauna was numerically dominated by Aranea (82.1%); among insects, Coleoptera was the most abundant taxonomic group (10.6%); Neuroptera showed the lowest value (0.88%). Significant differences were found between sites and zones. Organic vineyard showed the highest abundance of arthropods (92.41% were spiders) and in the integrated vineyard there was a 23% of insects. Both the highest abundance of arthropods and the highest Shannon Index value (2.46) was found 3 m away from the edge of the vineyard. Results showed that spiders were the dominant arthropods and ladybugs the dominant insects. Weedy strips near the edge of the vineyard contained a high number of insects and spiders. Our results support the importance of weedy margins in enhancing the population of arthropods as well as in biodiversity promotion. Well-managed field margins could play important role in biological control of vineyard pests. (Author)

  19. Bee venom hypersensitivity and its management: patients perception of venom desensitisation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lui, C L; Heddle, R J; Kupa, A; Coates, T; Roberts-Thomson, P J

    1995-12-01

    The objectives of the study were to review bee venom immunotherapy from the patient's perspective: in particular its benefits and its problems, and to investigate any genetic tendency for bee venom hypersensitivity. A self administered, 9 item questionnaire was sent to 219 patients who had undergone either inpatient or outpatient bee venom immunotherapy at Flinders Medical Center. The clinic records of these patients were also reviewed. The controls for the genetic study were sought from patients, staff and students at Flinders University and Flinders Medical Centre. One hundred and forty-six questionnaires (some incomplete and anonymous) were received. The female to male ratio was 1:2.5. The age at the time of the initial anaphylactic reaction to a bee sting ranged between 2 to 59 years, with 67% of patients being less then 20 years old. Forty percent of patients underwent venom immunotherapy for a period less than 2 years with only 11% maintaining therapy for the recommended period of 5 years or more. Thirty three percent of patients stopped their therapy on their own accord. Bee stings occurring during bee venom immunotherapy (n = 56) were generally well tolerated except in 8 subjects, 7 of whom had not reached the maintenance dose. The reduction in systemic reactions to subsequent bee stings was significantly better in the study group receiving bee venom than in an historic control group treated with whole bee extract (p = 0.03). Fear of bee stings and restricted life styles were improved during or after venom immunotherapy. The frequency of a positive family history of systemic reactions to bee stings in the patient cohort was 31%, whereas in controls it was 15% (p = 0.013). Bee venom immunotherapy has dual benefits: patients are protected from subsequent sting anaphylaxis and there is reduced psychological morbidity. However, to be effective, venom immunotherapy requires a prolonged period of carefully supervised treatment and each venom injection can cause

  20. Study on Bee venom and Pain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hyoung-Seok Yun

    2000-07-01

    Full Text Available In order to study Bee venom and Pain, We searched Journals and Internet. The results were as follows: 1. The domestic papers were total 13. 4 papers were published at The journal of korean acupuncture & moxibustion society, 3 papers were published at The journal of korean oriental medical society, Each The journal of KyoungHee University Oriental Medicine and The journal of korean sports oriental medical society published 1 papers and Unpublished desertations were 3. The clinical studies were 4 and the experimental studies were 9. 2. The domestic clinical studies reported that Bee venom Herbal Acupuncture therapy was effective on HIVD, Subacute arthritis of Knee Joint and Sequale of sprain. In the domestic experimental studies, 5 were related to analgesic effect of Bee vnom and 4 were related to mechanism of analgesia. 3. The journals searched by PubMed were total 18. 5 papers were published at Pain, Each 2 papers were published at Neurosci Lett. and Br J Pharmacol, and Each Eur J Pain, J Rheumatol, Brain Res, Neuroscience, Nature and Toxicon et al published 1 paper. 4. In the journals searched by PubMed, Only the experimental studies were existed. 8 papers used Bee Venom as pain induction substance and 1 paper was related to analgesic effects of Bee venom. 5. 15 webpage were searched by internet related to Bee Venom and pain. 11 were the introduction related to arthritis, 1 was the advertisement, 1 was the patient's experience, 1 was the case report on RA, 1 was review article.

  1. Exoskeletons and economics: indoor arthropod diversity increases in affluent neighbourhoods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leong, Misha; Bertone, Matthew A; Bayless, Keith M; Dunn, Robert R; Trautwein, Michelle D

    2016-08-01

    In urban ecosystems, socioeconomics contribute to patterns of biodiversity. The 'luxury effect', in which wealthier neighbourhoods are more biologically diverse, has been observed for plants, birds, bats and lizards. Here, we used data from a survey of indoor arthropod diversity (defined throughout as family-level richness) from 50 urban houses and found that house size, surrounding vegetation, as well as mean neighbourhood income best predict the number of kinds of arthropods found indoors. Our finding, that homes in wealthier neighbourhoods host higher indoor arthropod diversity (consisting of primarily non-pest species), shows that the luxury effect can extend to the indoor environment. The effect of mean neighbourhood income on indoor arthropod diversity was particularly strong for individual houses that lacked high surrounding vegetation ground cover, suggesting that neighbourhood dynamics can compensate for local choices of homeowners. Our work suggests that the management of neighbourhoods and cities can have effects on biodiversity that can extend from trees and birds all the way to the arthropod life in bedrooms and basements.

  2. The occurrence of arthropods in processed rice products in Malaysia

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Mariana A; Heah SK; Wong AL; Ho TM

    2010-01-01

    Objective:To determine distribution of arthropods in processed rice products such as rice flour and rice cereal-based infant food. Methods: Random samples of rice flour and rice cereal-based infant food purchased from commercial outlets were examined for the presence of arthropods using a modified Berlese Tullgren Funnel Method. Mites were mounted prior to identification and weevils were directly identified. Results: For non-expired products, infestation was found in 6.7%of rice flour and none was found in rice cereal-based infant food samples. The arthropods found in the flour samples were Cheyletus spp., Suidasia pontifica (S. pontifica), Tarsonemus spp., Tyrophagus putrescentiae (T. putrescentiae), Sitophilus granarius (S. granarius) and Sitophilus oryzae (S. oryzae). Others which cannot be identified were Oribatid and Prostigmatid mites. The most common mites in rice flour were Tarsonemus spp. (69.1%), followed by S. pontifica (18.2%). For expired products, only one sample of rice cereal-based infant food was infested and the infestation was by mites of the family Tydeidae. Conclusions:This study demonstrates the presence of 4 allergenic species of S. pontifica, T. putrescentiae, S. granarius and S. oryzae in rice flour. These arthropods can contribute to the incidence of anaphylaxis upon consumption by atopic individuals. There was no infestation of arthropods in rice cereal-based infant food surveyed except for an expired product in a moderate rusty tin container.

  3. Skimming the surface with Burgess Shale arthropod locomotion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minter, Nicholas J; Mángano, M Gabriela; Caron, Jean-Bernard

    2012-04-22

    The first arthropod trackways are described from the Middle Cambrian Burgess Shale Formation of Canada. Trace fossils, including trackways, provide a rich source of biological and ecological information, including direct evidence of behaviour not commonly available from body fossils alone. The discovery of large arthropod trackways is unique for Burgess Shale-type deposits. Trackway dimensions and the requisite number of limbs are matched with the body plan of a tegopeltid arthropod. Tegopelte, one of the rarest Burgess Shale animals, is over twice the size of all other benthic arthropods known from this locality, and only its sister taxon, Saperion, from the Lower Cambrian Chengjiang biota of China, approaches a similar size. Biomechanical trackway analysis demonstrates that tegopeltids were capable of rapidly skimming across the seafloor and, in conjunction with the identification of gut diverticulae in Tegopelte, supports previous hypotheses on the locomotory capabilities and carnivorous mode of life of such arthropods. The trackways occur in the oldest part (Kicking Horse Shale Member) of the Burgess Shale Formation, which is also known for its scarce assemblage of soft-bodied organisms, and indicate at least intermittent oxygenated bottom waters and low sedimentation rates.

  4. The non-target impact of spinosyns on beneficial arthropods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biondi, Antonio; Mommaerts, Veerle; Smagghe, Guy; Viñuela, Elisa; Zappalà, Lucia; Desneux, Nicolas

    2012-12-01

    Spinosyn-based products, mostly spinosad, have been widely recommended by extension specialists and agribusiness companies; consequently, they have been used to control various pests in many different cropping systems. Following the worldwide adoption of spinosad-based products for integrated and organic farming, an increasing number of ecotoxicological studies have been published in the past 10 years. These studies are primarily related to the risk assessment of spinosad towards beneficial arthropods. This review takes into account recent data with the aim of (i) highlighting potentially adverse effects of spinosyns on beneficial arthropods (and hence on ecosystem services that they provide in agroecosystems), (ii) clarifying the range of methods used to address spinosyn side effects on biocontrol agents and pollinators in order to provide new insights for the development of more accurate bioassays, (iii) identifying pitfalls when analysing laboratory results to assess field risks and (iv) gaining increasing knowledge on side effects when using spinosad for integrated pest management (IPM) programmes and organic farming. For the first time, a thorough review of possible risks of spinosad and novel spinosyns (such as spinetoram) to beneficial arthropods (notably natural enemies and pollinators) is provided. The acute lethal effect and multiple sublethal effects have been identified in almost all arthropod groups studied. This review will help to optimise the future use of spinosad and new spinosyns in IPM programmes and for organic farming, notably by preventing the possible side effects of spinosyns on beneficial arthropods.

  5. Exoskeletons and economics: indoor arthropod diversity increases in affluent neighbourhoods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertone, Matthew A.; Bayless, Keith M.; Dunn, Robert R.; Trautwein, Michelle D.

    2016-01-01

    In urban ecosystems, socioeconomics contribute to patterns of biodiversity. The ‘luxury effect’, in which wealthier neighbourhoods are more biologically diverse, has been observed for plants, birds, bats and lizards. Here, we used data from a survey of indoor arthropod diversity (defined throughout as family-level richness) from 50 urban houses and found that house size, surrounding vegetation, as well as mean neighbourhood income best predict the number of kinds of arthropods found indoors. Our finding, that homes in wealthier neighbourhoods host higher indoor arthropod diversity (consisting of primarily non-pest species), shows that the luxury effect can extend to the indoor environment. The effect of mean neighbourhood income on indoor arthropod diversity was particularly strong for individual houses that lacked high surrounding vegetation ground cover, suggesting that neighbourhood dynamics can compensate for local choices of homeowners. Our work suggests that the management of neighbourhoods and cities can have effects on biodiversity that can extend from trees and birds all the way to the arthropod life in bedrooms and basements. PMID:27484644

  6. Epigeic soil arthropod abundance under different agricultural land uses

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Perez-Bote, J. L.; Romero, A. J.

    2012-11-01

    The study of soil arthropods can provide valuable information how ecosystems respond to different management practices. The objective was to assess the total abundance, richness, and composition of epiedaphic arthropods in different agrosystems from southwestern Spain. Six sites with different agricultural uses were selected: olive grove, vineyards, olive grove with vineyards, wheat fields, fallows (150-300 m long), and abandoned vineyards. Crops were managed in extensive. Field margins were used as reference habitats. At the seven sites a total of 30 pitfall traps were arranged in a 10 × 3 grid. Traps were arranged to short (SD, 1 m), medium (MD, 6 m) and large (LD, 11 m) distance to the field margins in the middle of selected plots. Pitfall traps captured a total of 11,992 edaphic arthropods belonging to 11 different taxa. Soil fauna was numerically dominated by Formicidae (26.60%), Coleoptera (19.77%), and Aranae (16.76%). The higher number of soil arthropods were captured in the field margins followed by the abandoned vineyard. Significant differences were found between sites for total abundance, and zones. However, no significant differences for total abundance were found between months (April-July). Richness and diversity was highest in field margins and abandoned vineyards. Significant differences were found for these variables between sites. Our results suggest that agricultural intensification affects soil arthropods in Tierra de Barros area, a taxonomic group with an important role in the functioning of agricultural ecosystems. (Author) 32 refs.

  7. Widespread Chemical Detoxification of Alkaloid Venom by Formicine Ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    LeBrun, Edward G; Diebold, Peter J; Orr, Matthew R; Gilbert, Lawrence E

    2015-10-01

    The ability to detoxify defensive compounds of competitors provides key ecological advantages that can influence community-level processes. Although common in plants and bacteria, this type of detoxification interaction is extremely rare in animals. Here, using laboratory behavioral assays and analyses of videotaped interactions in South America, we report widespread venom detoxification among ants in the subfamily Formicinae. Across both data sets, nine formicine species, representing all major clades, used a stereotyped grooming behavior to self-apply formic acid (acidopore grooming) in response to fire ant (Solenopsis invicta and S. saevissima) venom exposure. In laboratory assays, this behavior increased the survivorship of species following exposure to S. invicta venom. Species expressed the behavior when exposed to additional alkaloid venoms, including both compositionally similar piperidine venom of an additional fire ant species and the pyrrolidine/pyrroline alkaloid venom of a Monomorium species. In addition, species expressed the behavior following exposure to the uncharacterized venom of a Crematogaster species. However, species did not express acidopore grooming when confronted with protein-based ant venoms or when exposed to monoterpenoid-based venom. This pattern, combined with the specific chemistry of the reaction of formic acid with venom alkaloids, indicates that alkaloid venoms are targets of detoxification grooming. Solenopsis thief ants, and Monomorium species stand out as brood-predators of formicine ants that produce piperidine, pyrrolidine, and pyrroline venom, providing an important ecological context for the use of detoxification behavior. Detoxification behavior also represents a mechanism that can influence the order of assemblage dominance hierarchies surrounding food competition. Thus, this behavior likely influences ant-assemblages through a variety of ecological pathways.

  8. Studies on Bee Venom and Its Medical Uses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ali, Mahmoud Abdu Al-Samie Mohamed

    2012-07-01

    Use of honey and other bee products in human treatments traced back thousands of years and healing properties are included in many religious texts including the Veda, Bible and Quran. Apitherapy is the use of honey bee products for medical purposes, this include bee venom, raw honey, royal jelly, pollen, propolis, and beeswax. Whereas bee venom therapy is the use of live bee stings (or injectable venom) to treat various diseases such as arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis (MS), lupus, sciatica, low back pain, and tennis elbow to name a few. It refers to any use of venom to assist the body in healing itself. Bee venom contains at least 18 pharmacologically active components including various enzymes, peptides and amines. Sulfur is believed to be the main element in inducing the release of cortisol from the adrenal glands and in protecting the body from infections. Contact with bee venom produces a complex cascade of reactions in the human body. The bee venom is safe for human treatments, the median lethal dose (LD50) for an adult human is 2.8 mg of venom per kg of body weight, i.e. a person weighing 60 kg has a 50% chance of surviving injections totaling 168 mg of bee venom. Assuming each bee injects all its venom and no stings are quickly removed at a maximum of 0.3 mg venom per sting, 560 stings could well be lethal for such a person. For a child weighing 10 kg, as little as 93.33 stings could be fatal. However, most human deaths result from one or few bee stings due to allergic reactions, heart failure or suffocation from swelling around the neck or the mouth. As compare with other human diseases, accidents and other unusual cases, the bee venom is very safe for human treatments.

  9. Modern trends in animal venom research - omics and nanomaterials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Utkin, Yuri N

    2017-01-01

    Animal venom research is a specialized investigation field, in which a number of different methods are used and this array is constantly expanding. Thus, recently emerged omics and nanotechnologies have already been successfully applied to venom research. Animal venoms have been studied for quite a long time. The traditional reductionist approach has been to isolate individual toxins and then study their structure and function. Unfortunately, the characterization of the venom as a whole system and its multiple effects on an entire organism were not possible until recent times. The development of new methods in mass spectrometry and sequencing have allowed such characterizations of venom, encompassing the identification of new toxins present in venoms at extremely low concentrations to changes in metabolism of prey organisms after envenomation. In particular, this type of comprehensive research has become possible due to the development of the various omics technologies: Proteomics, peptidomics, transcriptomics, genomics and metabolomics. As in other research fields, these omics technologies ushered in a revolution for venom studies, which is now entering the era of big data. Nanotechnology is a very new branch of technology and developing at an extremely rapid pace. It has found application in many spheres and has not bypassed the venom studies. Nanomaterials are quite promising in medicine, and most studies combining venoms and nanomaterials are dedicated to medical applications. Conjugates of nanoparticles with venom components have been proposed for use as drugs or diagnostics. For example, nanoparticles conjugated with chlorotoxin - a toxin in scorpion venom, which has been shown to bind specifically to glioma cells - are considered as potential glioma-targeted drugs, and conjugates of neurotoxins with fluorescent semiconductor nanoparticles or quantum dots may be used to detect endogenous targets expressed in live cells. The data on application of omics and

  10. Animal venom studies: Current benefits and future developments

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yuri; N; Utkin

    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 ofthese 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

  11. [Use of medicinal plants against scorpionic and ophidian venoms].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Memmi, A; Sansa, G; Rjeibi, I; El Ayeb, M; Srairi-Abid, N; Bellasfer, Z; Fekhih, A

    2007-01-01

    The scorpionic and ophidian envenomations are a serious public health problem in Tunisia especially in Southeastern regions. In these regions Artemisia campestris L is a plant well known which has a very important place in traditional medicine for its effectiveness against alleged venom of scorpions and snakes. In this work, we tested for the first time, the anti-venomous activity of Artemisia campestris L against the scorpion Androctonus australis garzonii and the viper Macrovipera lebetina venoms. Assays were conducted by fixing the dose of extract to3 mg/mouse while doses of venom are variable. The leaves of Artemisia campestris L were extracted by various organic solvents (Ether of oil, ethyl acetate, methanol and ethanol) and each extract was tested for its venom neutralizing capacity. For the ethanolic extract, a significant activity with respect to the venoms of scorpion Androctonus australis garzonii (Aag), was detected. Similarly, a significant neutralizing activity against the venom of a viper Macrovipera lebetina (Ml), was obtained with the dichloromethane extract. These results suggest the presence of two different type of chemical components in this plant: those neutralizing the venom of scorpion are soluble in ethanol whereas those neutralizing the venom of viper are soluble in dichloromethane.

  12. Oral Absorption of Mesobuthus eupeus Scorpion Venom in Mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zohreh Hosseini

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Background: To explore the oral absorption of scorpion venom an ELISA were designed in this study. Scorpions and their venom were been used for centuries as medical treatments in traditional medicine. The oral administration of drug referred as the convenient way, as there was not any publication about gastro-intestinal absorption of scorpion venom; this experiment checked oral absorption of Mesobuthus eupeus scorpion venom in mice. Methods: Six groups of mice orally received 0, 0.2, 0.5, 1, 2 and 5 mg/kg of M. eupeus venom and their blood samples were tacked after 15, 30, 60 min and 2, 4, 6, 24, 48 h after that. The presence of venom the blood samples were detected with a house- antigen capture ELISA. Results: The venom was absorbed after its feeding to mice. The animals expressed no signs of envenomation and, the venom was detectable by AC-ELISA as soon as 15 min after its feed. Maximum serum levels were 2 h after its meal. Conclusion: The orally administrated venom was absorbed to the blood circulation without any clinically symptoms.

  13. A simple protocol for venom peptide barcoding in scorpions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephan Schaffrath

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Scorpion venoms contain many species-specific peptides which target ion channels in cell membranes. Without harming the scorpions, these peptides can easily be extracted and detected by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. So far, only few studies compared the venom of different species solely for taxonomic purposes. Here, we describe a very simple protocol for venom extraction and mass fingerprinting that was developed for peptide barcoding (venom code for species identification and facilitates reproducibility if sample preparation is performed under field conditions. This approach may serve as suitable basis for a taxonomy-oriented scorpion toxin database that interacts with MALDI-TOF mass spectra.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez, Elda E; Rodríguez-Acosta, Alexis

    2008-01-01

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

  15. Effects of gamma radiation on bee venom: preliminary studies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Costa, H.; Boni-Mitake, M.; Souza, C.F.; Rogero, J.R. [Instituto de Pesquisas Energeticas e Nucleares (IPEN), Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil). Div. de Radiobiologia

    1999-11-01

    Africanized honeybees are very common insects in Brazil and frequently cause accidents followed by important immunological reactions and even deaths. Their venoms are composed of a complex mixture of substances of general biological actions. several works utilizing ionizing radiation showed that it is able to modify protein structures, and successfully detoxify snake venoms toxins, although maintaining its immunological properties. The main objective of this paper was to study the effects of gamma radiation on bee venom, regarding some biochemical and toxicological aspects. Africanized Apis melllifera whole venom (2 mg/ml) in 0.15 M Na Cl solution was irradiated with 2 kGy in a {sup 60} Co source. Preliminary studies has been carried out in order to identify some biochemical changes after irradiation. Concerning this, irradiated and native venom were submitted to a molecular exclusion chromatography (Sephadex G-100), UV absorption spectrum and protein concentration analysis. It could be seen that irradiated bee venom spectrum presented differences when compared to native bee venom, suggesting that some structural alterations has occurred. Protein concentration and chromatography profiles were not changes after irradiation. In order to evaluate the toxicity a lethality assay (L D{sub 50}) has been performed with both venoms, and irradiated venom showed to be less toxic than native one. (author) 23 refs., 3 figs., 1 tab.

  16. Arthropods and their products as aphrodisiacs--review of literature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pajovic, B; Radosavljevic, M; Radunovic, M; Radojevic, N; Bjelogrlic, B

    2012-04-01

    After a short review of impotence, the definitions of erectants and aphrodisiacs are presented. The Authors propose division of arthropods according to the places of effect. The description of particular arthropods with their pictures and nomenclature, is followed by certain or probable mechanisms of achieving the aphrodisiac and sometimes toxic effect, that were available in the literature since 1929 till nowadays. We mention the most usual locations, mainly in Asia, where they are found and consumed, but also, we describe the manner of preparing and intake. The review includes the following arthropods: lobster, Arizona bark scorpion, deathstalker, banana spider, Mediterranean black widow, Burmeister's triatoma, giant water bug, diving-beetle, Korean bug, diaclina, flannel moth, Spanish fly, migratory locust, red wood ant and honeybee.

  17. Observations on white and yellow venoms from an individual southern Pacific rattlesnake (Crotalus viridis helleri).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, E K; Kardong, K V; Ownby, C L

    1987-01-01

    Biochemical differences in white and yellow venoms produced in the separate venom glands of an individual southern Pacific rattlesnake (Crotalus viridis helleri) were investigated. Compared to the yellow venom, the white venom contained fewer low molecular weight components and was considerably less toxic. Although the exact LD50 was not determined, the white venom did not produce toxic effects in mice when injected i.v. at concentrations up to 10 mg/kg. The i.v. LD50 of the yellow venom was approximately 1.6 mg/kg. Both white and yellow venoms had hemorrhagic activity, but the white venom caused less intradermal hemorrhage in mice. No L-amino acid oxidase activity was measured in the white venom and protease and phospholipase A2 activities of the white venom were much less than in the yellow venom. The white and yellow venoms both produced myonecrosis at 1, 3 and 24 hr after i.m. injection into mice, however, there were some qualitative differences in the myonecrosis produced. When the venom samples were reacted against Wyeth's polyvalent (Crotalidae) antivenom using immunodiffusion, three precipitin bands formed against the yellow venom, whereas only one formed against the white venom. When reacted against an antiserum to myotoxin alpha from C. viridis viridis venom, both the white and yellow venoms produced one precipitin band each.

  18. [Diversity and stability of arthropod assemblage in tea orchard].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yigen; Xiong, Jinjun; Huang, Mingdu; Gu, Dejiu

    2004-05-01

    Two tea orchards, simplex tea orchard with weeds removed manually or by herbicides (STO) and complex tea orchard with the weed Hedyotis uncinella (CTO), each with an area of 0. 4 hm2, were established in 1995 in Yingde Hongxing Tea Plantation, Guangdong Province. The primary eigenvalues, species richness index (R), assemblage diversity index (H'), evenness index (J) and species concentration index (C) of arthropod assemblage were employed and compared to assess the efficacy of STO and CTO on the diversity and stabilityof arthropod assemblage. Stability indexes Ss/Si and Sn/Sp and variation coefficient of diversity index ds/dm were utilized as well. The results demonstrated that the R of arthropod assemblage in CTO ranged from 4 to 8, with the highest of 7.7403, while that in STO varied mainly between 4 to 6. The average R of arthropod assemblage in CTO was 5.4672 +/- 0.3483, higher than that in STO (4.8809 +/- 0.3175). The H' of arthropod in CTO (3.8535 +/- 0.1232) was higher, in contrast to the value in STO (3.4654 +/- 0.1856). The J in CTO was higher, while the species concentration index (C) was lower, in comparison to STO. The stability indexes Ss/Si and Sn/Sp of CTO were greater than those of STO, while the ds/dm in CTO (0.1107) was lower than that in STO (0.1855). All these indicated that the diversity of arthropod assemblage was better preserved in CTO, and the assemblage in CTO was more stable.

  19. Cockroach, tick, storage mite and other arthropod allergies: Where do we stand with molecular allergy diagnostics?: Part 15 of the Series Molecular Allergology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilger, Christiane; Kuehn, Annette; Raulf, Monika; Jakob, Thilo

    Arthropods form a broad phylum within the animal kingdom, comprising widely varying members such as insects, arachnids, crabs and centipedes. In addition to common allergies to house dust mites or hymenoptera venom, there are also rarer allergies that can be attributed to three major sources of allergens: cockroaches, ticks and storage mites. Other less known allergen sources include spiders, mosquitos, horseflies, red chironomid larvae, silverfish and ladybugs, as well as a variety of storage pests. At present, only extract-based test systems are available for the majority of allergens in IgE-based diagnostics. Molecular characterisation of numerous individual allergens has already been carried out. However, these individual allergens are only available for a small number of allergen sources (e. g. cockroaches and storage mites) in routine diagnostics. Particularly in the case of allergen sources with known high cross-reactivity, the use of marker allergens is believed to improve diagnostics. The currently known individual allergens of the above-mentioned allergy triggers from the arthropod realm are summarized and their potential use in allergy diagnostics discussed.

  20. Effects of gamma radiation on snake venoms

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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. In 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, subsequently submitted to irradiation. 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{sub 50} in mice. Native and irradiated crotoxin biodistribution ocurred 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)

  1. Peptidomic and transcriptomic profiling of four distinct spider venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oldrati, Vera; Koua, Dominique; Allard, Pierre-Marie; Hulo, Nicolas; Arrell, Miriam; Nentwig, Wolfgang; Lisacek, Frédérique; Wolfender, Jean-Luc; Kuhn-Nentwig, Lucia; Stöcklin, Reto

    2017-01-01

    Venom based research is exploited to find novel candidates for the development of innovative pharmacological tools, drug candidates and new ingredients for cosmetic and agrochemical industries. Moreover, venomics, as a well-established approach in systems biology, helps to elucidate the genetic mechanisms of the production of such a great molecular biodiversity. Today the advances made in the proteomics, transcriptomics and bioinformatics fields, favor venomics, allowing the in depth study of complex matrices and the elucidation even of minor compounds present in minute biological samples. The present study illustrates a rapid and efficient method developed for the elucidation of venom composition based on NextGen mRNA sequencing of venom glands and LC-MS/MS venom proteome profiling. The analysis of the comprehensive data obtained was focused on cysteine rich peptide toxins from four spider species originating from phylogenetically distant families for comparison purposes. The studied species were Heteropoda davidbowie (Sparassidae), Poecilotheria formosa (Theraphosidae), Viridasius fasciatus (Viridasiidae) and Latrodectus mactans (Theridiidae). This led to a high resolution profiling of 284 characterized cysteine rich peptides, 111 of which belong to the Inhibitor Cysteine Knot (ICK) structural motif. The analysis of H. davidbowie venom revealed a high richness in term of venom diversity: 95 peptide sequences were identified; out of these, 32 peptides presented the ICK structural motif and could be classified in six distinct families. The profiling of P. formosa venom highlighted the presence of 126 peptide sequences, with 52 ICK toxins belonging to three structural distinct families. V. fasciatus venom was shown to contain 49 peptide sequences, out of which 22 presented the ICK structural motif and were attributed to five families. The venom of L. mactans, until now studied for its large neurotoxins (Latrotoxins), revealed the presence of 14 cysteine rich

  2. Whole Transcriptome of the Venom Gland from Urodacus yaschenkoi Scorpion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luna-Ramírez, Karen; Quintero-Hernández, Verónica; Juárez-González, Víctor Rivelino; Possani, Lourival D

    2015-01-01

    Australian scorpion venoms have been poorly studied, probably because they do not pose an evident threat to humans. In addition, the continent has other medically important venomous animals capable of causing serious health problems. Urodacus yaschenkoi belongs to the most widely distributed family of Australian scorpions (Urodacidae) and it is found all over the continent, making it a useful model system for studying venom composition and evolution. This communication reports the whole set of mRNA transcripts produced by the venom gland. U. yaschenkoi venom is as complex as its overseas counterparts. These transcripts certainly code for several components similar to known scorpion venom components, such as: alpha-KTxs, beta-KTxs, calcins, protease inhibitors, antimicrobial peptides, sodium-channel toxins, toxin-like peptides, allergens, La1-like, hyaluronidases, ribosomal proteins, proteasome components and proteins related to cellular processes. A comparison with the venom gland transcriptome of Centruroides noxius (Buthidae) showed that these two scorpions have similar components related to biological processes, although important differences occur among the venom toxins. In contrast, a comparison with sequences reported for Urodacus manicatus revealed that these two Urodacidae species possess the same subfamily of scorpion toxins. A comparison with sequences of an U. yaschenkoi cDNA library previously reported by our group showed that both techniques are reliable for the description of the venom components, but the whole transcriptome generated with Next Generation Sequencing platform provides sequences of all transcripts expressed. Several of which were identified in the proteome, but many more transcripts were identified including uncommon transcripts. The information reported here constitutes a reference for non-Buthidae scorpion venoms, providing a comprehensive view of genes that are involved in venom production. Further, this work identifies new putative

  3. 40 CFR 180.1124 - Arthropod pheromones; exemption from the requirement of a tolerance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 23 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Arthropod pheromones; exemption from... FOOD Exemptions From Tolerances § 180.1124 Arthropod pheromones; exemption from the requirement of a tolerance. Arthropod pheromones, as described in § 152.25(b) of this chapter, when used in retrievably...

  4. Successive gain of insulator proteins in arthropod evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heger, Peter; George, Rebecca; Wiehe, Thomas

    2013-10-01

    Alteration of regulatory DNA elements or their binding proteins may have drastic consequences for morphological evolution. Chromatin insulators are one example of such proteins and play a fundamental role in organizing gene expression. While a single insulator protein, CTCF (CCCTC-binding factor), is known in vertebrates, Drosophila melanogaster utilizes six additional factors. We studied the evolution of these proteins and show here that-in contrast to the bilaterian-wide distribution of CTCF-all other D. melanogaster insulators are restricted to arthropods. The full set is present exclusively in the genus Drosophila whereas only two insulators, Su(Hw) and CTCF, existed at the base of the arthropod clade and all additional factors have been acquired successively at later stages. Secondary loss of factors in some lineages further led to the presence of different insulator subsets in arthropods. Thus, the evolution of insulator proteins within arthropods is an ongoing and dynamic process that reshapes and supplements the ancient CTCF-based system common to bilaterians. Expansion of insulator systems may therefore be a general strategy to increase an organism's gene regulatory repertoire and its potential for morphological plasticity.

  5. Consequences of cyclic vegetation management for arthropod survival : Simulation experiments

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hinsch, Martin; Poethke, Hans-Joachim

    2007-01-01

    Many rare arthropod species occupy open grasslands. Mowing or grazing is needed to preserve the habitat for these species. Alternatively the vegetation cover in parts of the managed area can be periodically destroyed by ploughing or rototilling. Such treatment results in a dynamic mosaic of habitat

  6. Sampling epigeal arthropods: A permanent, sheltered, closeable pitfall trapping station

    Science.gov (United States)

    Epigeal arthropods constitute the bulk of herbivore, predator, and decomposer species in soil and litter ecosystems. Being small and difficult to observe within these sometimes densely vegetated habitats, they are inherently difficult to sample quantitatively. Further, most methods have inherent tax...

  7. Human to human transmission of arthropod-borne pathogens

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Martina, Byron E.; Barzon, Luisa; Pijlman, Gorben P.; Fuente, de la José; Rizzoli, Annapaola; Wammes, Linda J.; Takken, Willem; Rij, van Ronald P.; Papa, Anna

    2017-01-01

    Human-to-human (H2H) transmitted arthropod-borne pathogens are a growing burden worldwide, with malaria and dengue being the most common mosquito-borne H2H transmitted diseases. The ability of vectors to get infected by humans during a blood meal to further propel an epidemic depends on complex i

  8. Arthropods associated with medicinal plants in coastal South Carolina

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ROLANDO LOPEZ; B. MERLE SHEPARD

    2007-01-01

    Arthropods were sampled from feverfew [Tanacetum parthenium (L.) SchultzBip], Echinaceapurpurea (L.) Moench, Echinaceapallida (Nutt.) Nutt., Valeriana officinalis L., and St. John's wort (Hypericum perforatum L.) during 1998-2001. In addition,arthropods were sampled on tansy (Tanacetum vulgare L.) from 2001-2004. In general,50-60 arthropod species where collected and identified among all of the medicinal plant species. Among the predators, Orius insidiosus (Say) (Hemiptera: Anthocoridae), Geocoris punctipes (Say) (Hemiptera: Lygaeidae) and spiders were most abundant from 1998-2004.The three-cornered alfalfa hopper, Spissistilus festinus (Say), was the most abundant herbivore found from 1998 to 2001. Orius insidiosus and G. punctipes were 3-4 times more abundant on T. parthenium than on any other medicinal plant species. Based on the numbers of predatory arthropods found on T. parthenium, this crop could be suitable as a companion or "banker" plant to attract and maintain populations of predators, especially O. insidiosus and G. punctipes. Whitefly nymphs attacked by predators with piercing/sucking mouthparts are easily identified using a microscope because of the general appearance of the carcass left by the predators. Thus, populations of predators on T. parthenium suppressed Bemisia tabaci populations on E. purpurea when these crops were planted as companion crops.

  9. Arthropod richness in roadside verges in the Netherlands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Noordijk, J.; Raemakers, I.P.; Schaffers, A.P.; Sykora, K.V.

    2009-01-01

    Urbanisation and intensifi cation of agriculture has led to large scale destruction of natural and seminatural areas in Western Europe. Consequentially, the conservation of biodiversity in small landscape units has become a matter of increasing urgency. In this paper, we inventoried the arthropod di

  10. Grass Valley Venom FlashPak录像机

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2005-01-01

    Thomson新推出的Grass Valley Venom FIashPak录像机,可配合草谷VIPER Film Stream数字电影摄像机使用。Venom FlashPak是一款灵巧可靠的台式系统,可以记录VIPER摄影机输出的未压缩视频。

  11. Embriotoxic effects of maternal exposure to Tityus serrulatus scorpion venom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. A. S. Barão

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Tityus serrulatus is the most venomous scorpion in Brazil; however, it is not known whether its venom causes any harm to the offspring whose mothers have received it. This study investigates whether the venom of T. serrulatus may lead to deleterious effects in the offspring, when once administered to pregnant rats at a dose that causes moderate envenomation (3mg/kg. The venom effects were studied on the 5th and on the 10th gestation day (GD5 and GD10. The maternal reproductive parameters of the group that received the venom on GD5 showed no alteration. The group that received the venom on GD10 presented an increase in post-implantation losses. In this group, an increase in the liver weight was also observed and one-third of the fetuses presented incomplete ossification of skull bones. None of the groups that received the venom had any visceral malformation or delay in the fetal development of their offspring. The histopathological analysis revealed not only placentas and lungs but also hearts, livers and kidneys in perfect state. Even having caused little effect on the dams, the venom may act in a more incisive way on the offspring, whether by stress generation or by a direct action.

  12. Recent Advances in Research on Widow Spider Venoms and Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuai Yan

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Widow spiders have received much attention due to the frequently reported human and animal injures caused by them. Elucidation of the molecular composition and action mechanism of the venoms and toxins has vast implications in the treatment of latrodectism and in the neurobiology and pharmaceutical research. In recent years, the studies of the widow spider venoms and the venom toxins, particularly the α-latrotoxin, have achieved many new advances; however, the mechanism of action of the venom toxins has not been completely clear. The widow spider is different from many other venomous animals in that it has toxic components not only in the venom glands but also in other parts of the adult spider body, newborn spiderlings, and even the eggs. More recently, the molecular basis for the toxicity outside the venom glands has been systematically investigated, with four proteinaceous toxic components being purified and preliminarily characterized, which has expanded our understanding of the widow spider toxins. This review presents a glance at the recent advances in the study on the venoms and toxins from the Latrodectus species.

  13. Recent Advances in Research on Widow Spider Venoms and Toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Shuai; Wang, Xianchun

    2015-11-27

    Widow spiders have received much attention due to the frequently reported human and animal injures caused by them. Elucidation of the molecular composition and action mechanism of the venoms and toxins has vast implications in the treatment of latrodectism and in the neurobiology and pharmaceutical research. In recent years, the studies of the widow spider venoms and the venom toxins, particularly the α-latrotoxin, have achieved many new advances; however, the mechanism of action of the venom toxins has not been completely clear. The widow spider is different from many other venomous animals in that it has toxic components not only in the venom glands but also in other parts of the adult spider body, newborn spiderlings, and even the eggs. More recently, the molecular basis for the toxicity outside the venom glands has been systematically investigated, with four proteinaceous toxic components being purified and preliminarily characterized, which has expanded our understanding of the widow spider toxins. This review presents a glance at the recent advances in the study on the venoms and toxins from the Latrodectus species.

  14. Accelerated evolution of crotalinae snake venom gland serine proteases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deshimaru, M; Ogawa, T; Nakashima, K; Nobuhisa, I; Chijiwa, T; Shimohigashi, Y; Fukumaki, Y; Niwa, M; Yamashina, I; Hattori, S; Ohno, M

    1996-11-11

    Eight cDNAs encoding serine proteases isolated from Trimeresurus flavoviridis (habu snake) and T. gramineus (green habu snake) venom gland cDNA libraries showed that nonsynonymous nucleotide substitutions have accumulated in the mature protein-coding regions to cause amino acid changes. Southern blot analysis of T. flavoviridis genomic DNAs using two proper probes indicated that venom gland serine protease genes form a multigene family in the genome. These observations suggest that venom gland serine proteases have diversified their amino acid sequences in an accelerating manner. Since a similar feature has been previously discovered in crotalinae snake venom gland phospholipase A2 (PLA2) isozyme genes, accelerated evolution appears to be universal in plural isozyme families of crotalinae snake venom gland.

  15. [Accidents with venomous and poisonous animals in Central Europe].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bodio, Mauro; Junghanss, Thomas

    2009-05-01

    Central Europe is largely safe from accidents with venomous and poisonous animals. The regions where European vipers are regularly found are shrinking. Today accidents with jellyfish and stings of venomous fish afflicted during leisure activities at the sea side play the dominant role. Life threatening accidents in Europe are mainly due to exotic snakes held in captivity. A system useful in daily medical practice is explained to classify and stage accidents due to poisonous and venomous animals. The important poisonous and venomous animals of Central Europe and the specific therapeutics, the antivenoms, are covered. The antivenom depot "Antivenin-CH" of the Swiss Toxicology Information Centre in Zurich and the MRITox in Munich with the antivenom registry Munich AntiVenom INdex (MAVIN) are presented.

  16. Influence of ionizing radiation on Cobra (Naja haje) and Cerastes cerastes venoms: Toxicological and immunological aspects

    OpenAIRE

    Esmat A. Shaban

    2003-01-01

    The effect of gamma irradiation (15 KGy) on the Cobra Naja haje and Cerastes cerastes venoms toxicity and immunogenicity was evaluated. Irradiated venoms were at least 28.1% less toxic than non-irradiated venoms. However the antigenic response was not changed as judged by the capacity of irradiated venoms to react with polyvalent antivenom horse serum. The immunodiffusion method showed identity between irradiated and non-irradiated samples. The effect of gamma radiation on some venom enzymes ...

  17. Venom landscapes: mining the complexity of spider venoms via a combined cDNA and mass spectrometric approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escoubas, Pierre; Sollod, Brianna; King, Glenn F

    2006-05-01

    The complexity of Australian funnel-web spider venoms has been explored via the combined use of MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry coupled with chromatographic separation and the analysis of venom-gland cDNA libraries. The results show that these venoms are far more complex than previously realized. We show that the venoms of Australian funnel-web spiders contain many hundreds of peptides that follow a bimodal distribution, with about 75% of the peptides having a mass of 3000-5000 Da. The mass spectral data were validated by matching the experimentally observed masses with those predicted from peptide sequences derived from analysis of venom-gland cDNA libraries. We show that multiple isoforms of these peptides are found in small chromatographic windows, which suggests that the wide distribution of close molecular weights among the chromatographic fractions probably reflects a diversity of structures and physicochemical properties. The combination of all predicted and measured parameters permits the interpretation of three-dimensional 'venom landscapes' derived from LC-MALDI analysis. We propose that these venom landscapes might have predictive value for the discovery of various groups of pharmacologically distinct toxins in complex venoms.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Laustsen, Andreas Hougaard; Gutiérrez, José María; Lohse, Brian

    2015-01-01

    /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...

  19. A Study on Major Components of Bee Venom Using Electrophoresis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lee, Jin-Seon

    2000-12-01

    Full Text Available This study was designed to study on major components of various Bee Venom(Bee Venom by electrical stimulation in Korea; K-BV I, Bee Venom by Microwave stimulation in Korea; K -BV II, 0.5rng/ml, Fu Yu Pharmaceutical Factory, China; C-BV, 1mg /ml, Monmouth Pain Institute, Inc., U.S.A.; A-BV using Electrophoresis. The results were summarized as follows: 1. In 1:4000 Bee Venom solution rate, the band was not displayed distinctly usmg Electrophoresis. But in 1: 1000, the band showed clearly. 2. The results of Electrophoresis at solution rate 1:1000, K-BV I and K-BVII showed similar band. 3. The molecular weight of Phospholipase A2 was known as 19,000 but its band was seen at 17,000 in Electrophoresis. 4. Protein concentration of Bee Venom by Lowry method was different at solution rate 1:4000 ; C-BV was 250μg/ml, K-BV I was 190μg/ml, K-BV Ⅱ was 160μg/ml and C-BV was 45μg/ml. 5. Electrophoresis method was unuseful for analysis of Bee Venom when solution rate is above 1:4000 but Protein concentration of Bee Venom by Lowry method was possible. These data from the study can be applied to establish the standard measurement of Bee Venom and prevent pure bee venom from mixing of another components. I think it is desirable to study more about safety of Bee Venom as time goes by.

  20. Brown spider (Loxosceles genus) venom toxins: tools for biological purposes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaim, Olga Meiri; Trevisan-Silva, Dilza; Chaves-Moreira, Daniele; Wille, Ana Carolina M; Ferrer, Valéria Pereira; Matsubara, Fernando Hitomi; Mangili, Oldemir Carlos; da Silveira, Rafael Bertoni; Gremski, Luiza Helena; Gremski, Waldemiro; Senff-Ribeiro, Andrea; Veiga, Silvio Sanches

    2011-03-01

    Venomous animals use their venoms as tools for defense or predation. These venoms are complex mixtures, mainly enriched of proteic toxins or peptides with several, and different, biological activities. In general, spider venom is rich in biologically active molecules that are useful in experimental protocols for pharmacology, biochemistry, cell biology and immunology, as well as putative tools for biotechnology and industries. Spider venoms have recently garnered much attention from several research groups worldwide. Brown spider (Loxosceles genus) venom is enriched in low molecular mass proteins (5-40 kDa). Although their venom is produced in minute volumes (a few microliters), and contain only tens of micrograms of protein, the use of techniques based on molecular biology and proteomic analysis has afforded rational projects in the area and permitted the discovery and identification of a great number of novel toxins. The brown spider phospholipase-D family is undoubtedly the most investigated and characterized, although other important toxins, such as low molecular mass insecticidal peptides, metalloproteases and hyaluronidases have also been identified and featured in literature. The molecular pathways of the action of these toxins have been reported and brought new insights in the field of biotechnology. Herein, we shall see how recent reports describing discoveries in the area of brown spider venom have expanded biotechnological uses of molecules identified in these venoms, with special emphasis on the construction of a cDNA library for venom glands, transcriptome analysis, proteomic projects, recombinant expression of different proteic toxins, and finally structural descriptions based on crystallography of toxins.

  1. Brown Spider (Loxosceles genus Venom Toxins: Tools for Biological Purposes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Senff-Ribeiro

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Venomous animals use their venoms as tools for defense or predation. These venoms are complex mixtures, mainly enriched of proteic toxins or peptides with several, and different, biological activities. In general, spider venom is rich in biologically active molecules that are useful in experimental protocols for pharmacology, biochemistry, cell biology and immunology, as well as putative tools for biotechnology and industries. Spider venoms have recently garnered much attention from several research groups worldwide. Brown spider (Loxosceles genus venom is enriched in low molecular mass proteins (5–40 kDa. Although their venom is produced in minute volumes (a few microliters, and contain only tens of micrograms of protein, the use of techniques based on molecular biology and proteomic analysis has afforded rational projects in the area and permitted the discovery and identification of a great number of novel toxins. The brown spider phospholipase-D family is undoubtedly the most investigated and characterized, although other important toxins, such as low molecular mass insecticidal peptides, metalloproteases and hyaluronidases have also been identified and featured in literature. The molecular pathways of the action of these toxins have been reported and brought new insights in the field of biotechnology. Herein, we shall see how recent reports describing discoveries in the area of brown spider venom have expanded biotechnological uses of molecules identified in these venoms, with special emphasis on the construction of a cDNA library for venom glands, transcriptome analysis, proteomic projects, recombinant expression of different proteic toxins, and finally structural descriptions based on crystallography of toxins.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E.Z. Arruda

    2002-06-01

    Full Text Available 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, 37ºC, 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 4ºC 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.

  3. Venom immunotherapy improves health-related quality of life in patients allergic to yellow jacket venom

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Elberink, JNGO; de Monchy, JGR; van der Heide, S; Guyatt, GH; Dubois, AEJ

    2002-01-01

    Background: Venom immunotherapy (VIT) is effective in preventing anaphylactic reactions after insect stings. The effect of VIT on health-related quality of life (HRQL) was studied to evaluate whether this treatment is of importance to patients. Objective: We compared HRQL outcomes measured with a di

  4. [Exposure degree of important non-target arthropods to Cry2Aa in Bt rice fields].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Qing-Ling; Li, Yun-He; Hua, Hong-Xia; Yang, Chang-Ju; Wu, Hong-Jin; Peng, Yu-Fa

    2013-06-01

    Based on the principle of "risk = hazard x exposure", the selected representative nontarget organisms in the assessment of the potential effects of insect-resistant genetically modified (GM) crops on non-target arthropods in laboratory are generally the arthropod species highly exposed to the insecticidal proteins expressed by the GM crops in farmland ecosystem. In order to understand the exposure degree of the important arthropod species to Cry proteins in Bt rice fields, and to select the appropriate non-target arthropods in the risk assessment of insect-resistant GM crops, the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was conducted to measure the Cry2Aa protein concentration in the arthropods collected from the cry2Aa rice fields at different rice growth stages. The results showed that there was a significant difference in the Cry2Aa content protein concentration in different arthropod species. Some species did not contain Cry2Aa protein, while some species contained larger amounts of Cry2Aa protein. Relative to the arthropods colleted after rice anthesis, the arthropods colleted in rice anthesis contained relative higher concentrations of Cry2Aa protein, especially for the predacious arthropods. No Cry proteins were detected in parasitic arthropods. This study provided references for the laboratory assessment of the effects of GM rice on nontarget arthropods.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-12-15

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

  6. Venom physiology and composition in a litter of Common Death Adders (Acanthophis antarcticus) and their parents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pintor, Anna F V; Winter, Kelly L; Krockenberger, Andrew K; Seymour, Jamie E

    2011-01-01

    Metabolic expenditure has been shown to increase abruptly in several snake species directly after venom expenditure, while the later stages of venom replenishment seem to involve minor costs. This study examines the dependence of increases in metabolic rate following venom expenditure on the stage of venom replenishment that the venom producing tissue is in at the time of venom extraction in the Common Death Adder, Acanthophis antarcticus. Potential changes in venom composition during venom replenishment are also explored to elucidate whether replenishment is achieved via low rates of synthesis of all venom components or by non-parallel protein production, i.e. initial production of some venom components and subsequent synthesis of others. The results of this study indicate that venom expenditure is followed by a sudden increase in metabolic rate when snakes have previously not expended venom for at least two days, suggesting that repetitive venom expenditure does not further increase the activity of venom gland tissue in this initial time period but that a second upregulation occurs when the tissue is past the initial activation stage. In addition, venom composition appears to remain constant during replenishment within an individual, while substantial variations can be observed even between siblings.

  7. Chironex fleckeri (Box Jellyfish) Venom Proteins

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  8. Scyphozoan jellyfish venom metalloproteinases and their role in the cytotoxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Hyunkyoung; Jung, Eun-sun; Kang, Changkeun; Yoon, Won Duk; Kim, Jong-Shu; Kim, Euikyung

    2011-09-01

    The present study, for the first time, comparatively investigated the enzymatic activities (proteases and hyaluronidases) in the venoms of four Scyphozoan jellyfish species, including Nemopilema nomurai, Rhopilema esculenta, Cyanea nozakii, and Aurelia aurita. For this, various zymographic analyses were performed using assay specific substrates. Interestingly, all the four jellyfish venoms showed gelatinolytic, caseinolytic, and fibrinolytic activities, each of which contains a multitude of enzyme components with molecular weights between 17 and 130 kDa. These four jellyfish venoms demonstrated a huge variation in their proteolytic activities in quantitative and qualitative manner depending on the species. Most of these enzymatic activities were disappeared by the treatment of 1,10-phenanthroline, suggesting they might be belonged to metalloproteinases. Toxicological significance of these venom proteases was examined by comparing their proteolytic activity and the cytotoxicity in NIH 3T3 cells. The relative cytotoxic potency was C. nozakii > N. nomurai > A. aurita > R. esculenta. The cytotoxicity of jellyfish venom shows a positive correlation with its overall proteolytic activity. The metalloproteinases appear to play an important role in the induction of jellyfish venom toxicities. In conclusion, the present report proposes a novel finding of Scyphozoan jellyfish venom metalloproteinases and their potential role in the cytotoxicity.

  9. Micrurus snake venoms activate human complement system and generate anaphylatoxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tanaka Gabriela D

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The genus Micrurus, coral snakes (Serpentes, Elapidae, comprises more than 120 species and subspecies distributed from the south United States to the south of South America. Micrurus snake bites can cause death by muscle paralysis and further respiratory arrest within a few hours after envenomation. Clinical observations show mainly neurotoxic symptoms, although other biological activities have also been experimentally observed, including cardiotoxicity, hemolysis, edema and myotoxicity. Results In the present study we have investigated the action of venoms from seven species of snakes from the genus Micrurus on the complement system in in vitro studies. Several of the Micrurus species could consume the classical and/or the lectin pathways, but not the alternative pathway, and C3a, C4a and C5a were generated in sera treated with the venoms as result of this complement activation. Micrurus venoms were also able to directly cleave the α chain of the component C3, but not of the C4, which was inhibited by 1,10 Phenanthroline, suggesting the presence of a C3α chain specific metalloprotease in Micrurus spp venoms. Furthermore, complement activation was in part associated with the cleavage of C1-Inhibitor by protease(s present in the venoms, which disrupts complement activation control. Conclusion Micrurus venoms can activate the complement system, generating a significant amount of anaphylatoxins, which may assist due to their vasodilatory effects, to enhance the spreading of other venom components during the envenomation process.

  10. [Drug or plant substances which antagonize venoms or potentiate antivenins].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chippaux, J P; Rakotonirina, V S; Rakotonirina, A; Dzikouk, G

    1997-01-01

    Dendroaspis jamesoni (Elapidae) and Echis oceliatus (Viperidae) are responsible for most of severe evenomation in Cameroon. Toxicity of venoms of these two species has been measured using mice according to the method of Spearman & Kàrber. The effect on experimental envenomation of various drugs (atropine, promethazine, neostigmine, hydrocortisone, pentosane sulfuric polyester, heparin, tranexamic acid and aminocaproic acid) and plant extracts (Schumanniophyton magnificum, Bidens pilosa, Securidaca longepedunculata and Garcinia lucida) has been observed associated or not with the antivenom lpser Afrique (SAV). The venom of D. jamesoni contains neurotoxins agonizing and antagonising acetylcholine. The toxicity of the venom did not depend on the route of injection. Atropine, promethazine, neostigmine and hydrocortisone protected animals against a venom dose up to 2 LD50. Moreover, atropine and promethazine potentiated the SAV. Similar results have been obtained with extracts from S. magnificum and B. pilosa. The venom of E. ocellatus induces haemorrhage and necrosis. The toxicity increased by 3-fold when the venom was injected through intravenous or intraperitoneal route, compared to intramuscular route. Pentosane sulfuric polyester and tranexamic acid protected mice against doses up to 3 LD50. Pentosane sulfuric polyester, hydrocortisone, heparin and aminocaproic acid increased the SAV protective titre by 50%. However, tried plant extracts weakly antagonised the venom and did not potentiate the SAV.

  11. Effects of Animal Venoms and Toxins on Hallmarks of Cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  12. Neutralization of Apis mellifera bee venom activities by suramin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Kik, Camila Z; Fernandes, Fabrício F A; Tomaz, Marcelo Amorim; Gaban, Glauco A; Fonseca, Tatiane F; Calil-Elias, Sabrina; Oliveira, Suellen D S; Silva, Claudia L M; Martinez, Ana Maria Blanco; Melo, Paulo A

    2013-06-01

    In this work we evaluated the ability of suramin, a polysulfonated naphthylurea derivative, to antagonize the cytotoxic and enzymatic effects of the crude venom of Apis mellifera. Suramin was efficient to decrease the lethality in a dose-dependent way. The hemoconcentration caused by lethal dose injection of bee venom was abolished by suramin (30 μg/g). The edematogenic activity of the venom (0.3 μg/g) was antagonized by suramin (10 μg/g) in all treatment protocols. The changes in the vascular permeability caused by A. mellifera (1 μg/g) venom were inhibited by suramin (30 μg/g) in the pre- and posttreatment as well as when the venom was preincubated with suramin. In addition, suramin also inhibited cultured endothelial cell lesion, as well as in vitro myotoxicity, evaluated in mouse extensor digitorum longus muscle, which was inhibited by suramin (10 and 25 μM), decreasing the rate of CK release, showing that suramin protected the sarcolemma against damage induced by components of bee venom (2.5 μg/mL). Moreover, suramin inhibited the in vivo myotoxicity induced by i.m. injection of A. mellifera venom in mice (0.5 μg/g). The analysis of the area under the plasma CK vs. time curve showed that preincubation, pre- and posttreatment with suramin (30 μg/g) inhibited bee venom myotoxic activity in mice by about 89%, 45% and 40%, respectively. Suramin markedly inhibited the PLA2 activity in a concentration-dependent way (1-30 μM). Being suramin a polyanion molecule, the effects observed may be due to the interaction of its charges with the polycation components present in A. mellifera bee venom.

  13. Combined effects of arthropod herbivores and phytopathogens on plant performance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hauser, Thure Pavlo; Christensen, Stina; Heimes, Christine;

    2013-01-01

    1. Many plants are simultaneously attacked by arthropod herbivores and phytopathogens. These may affect each other directly and indirectly, enhancing or reducing the amount of plant resources they each consume. Ultimately, this may reduce or enhance plant performance relative to what should be ex....... However, as interactive impacts also differed among environments and parasite manipulation methods, this suggests that the ability of plants to compensate such losses may depend on environmental conditions and probably also overall infection load......., the patterns we found were related to plant traits and experimental conditions. 5. Our results suggest that immediate loss of resources from interactions between arthropod herbivores and pathogens is generally moderated by compensation to an extent where there are no interactive effects on plant performance...

  14. Pathogen-mediated manipulation of arthropod microbiota to promote infection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abraham, Nabil M.; Liu, Lei; Jutras, Brandon Lyon; Yadav, Akhilesh K.; Narasimhan, Sukanya; Gopalakrishnan, Vissagan; Ansari, Juliana M.; Jefferson, Kimberly K.; Cava, Felipe; Jacobs-Wagner, Christine; Fikrig, Erol

    2017-01-01

    Arthropods transmit diverse infectious agents; however, the ways microbes influence their vector to enhance colonization are poorly understood. Ixodes scapularis ticks harbor numerous human pathogens, including Anaplasma phagocytophilum, the agent of human granulocytic anaplasmosis. We now demonstrate that A. phagocytophilum modifies the I. scapularis microbiota to more efficiently infect the tick. A. phagocytophilum induces ticks to express Ixodes scapularis antifreeze glycoprotein (iafgp), which encodes a protein with several properties, including the ability to alter bacterial biofilm formation. IAFGP thereby perturbs the tick gut microbiota, which influences the integrity of the peritrophic matrix and gut barrier—critical obstacles for Anaplasma colonization. Mechanistically, IAFGP binds the terminal d-alanine residue of the pentapeptide chain of bacterial peptidoglycan, resulting in altered permeability and the capacity of bacteria to form biofilms. These data elucidate the molecular mechanisms by which a human pathogen appropriates an arthropod antibacterial protein to alter the gut microbiota and more effectively colonize the vector. PMID:28096373

  15. Survey of the arthropods on jojoba (Simmondsia chinensis)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pinto, J.D.; Frommer, S.I.

    1980-02-01

    Simmondsia chinensis (jojoba), a plant native to southwestern North America, has become of economic interest due to the various industrial uses of the unique liquid wax found in its seeds. In a survey of arthropods associated with sylvatic jojoba in California and Arizona, we collected 106 species of insects and mites. Of these, 50 are phytophagous, 29 are parasitic, and 18 are predaceous. Most of the phytophagous species are also known to feed on plants other than jojoba; several of these are notorious generalists. The bionomics of the 4 commonest phytophagous species, Asphondylia n. sp. (Cecidomyiidae), Epinotia kasloana (Olethreutidae), Periploca n. sp. (Walshiidae), and Incisitermes fruticavus (Kalotermitidae) are summarized briefly. None of the phytophagous species were observed to cause extensive damage to sylvatic jojoba. The numerous parasitic and predaceous arthropods probably account for the natural control of many of them. These relationships should be kept in mind when planning future commercial plantations of jojoba.

  16. Pesticides and Arthropods: Sublethal Effects and Demographic Toxicology

    OpenAIRE

    2007-01-01

    Insecticides and acaricides designed to control primary harmful insects and mites may also variously affect some other arthopods present in an (agro)ecosystem (e.g. secondary pests, predators, parasitoids, saprophytes, bioindicators, pollinators). Apart from insecticides and acaricides, arthropods may also be affected by the activity of other pesticides (fungicides, herbicides, etc.). Regardless of whether they are deemed desirable or not, the effects that pesticides have on arthopods need to...

  17. Arthropod-Borne Diseases: The Camper's Uninvited Guests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juckett, Gregory

    2015-08-01

    Arthropod-borne diseases are a major problem whenever outdoor activities bring arthropods and people into contact. The arthropods discussed here include arachnids (ticks) and insects. Most arthropod bites and stings are minor, with the notable exception being bee-sting anaphylaxis. Ticks cause the most disease transmission. Key hard tick vectors include black-legged (Ixodes), dog (Dermacentor), and lone star (Amblyomma) ticks, which transmit Lyme and various rickettsial diseases. Insect repellents, permethrin sprays, and proper tick inspection reduce this risk significantly. Lyme disease and the milder southern-tick-associated rash illness (STARI) are characterized by the erythema migrans rash followed, in the case of Lyme disease, by early, disseminated, and late systemic symptoms. Treatment is with doxycycline or ceftriaxone. Indefinite treatment of "chronic Lyme disease" based on subjective symptoms is not beneficial. Rickettsial diseases include ehrlichiosis, anaplasmosis, and Rocky Mountain spotted fever, which are characterized by fever, headache, and possible rash and should be empirically treated with doxycycline while awaiting laboratory confirmation. Tularemia is a bacterial disease (Francisella) spread by ticks and rabbits and characterized by fever and adenopathy. Treatment is with gentamicin or streptomycin. Babesiosis is a protozoal disease, mimicking malaria, that causes a self-limited flu-like disease in healthy hosts but can be life threatening with immune compromise. Treatment is with atovaquone and azithromycin. Other tick-related conditions include viral diseases (Powassan, Colorado tick fever, heartland virus), tick-borne relapsing fever (Borrelia), and tick paralysis (toxin). Mosquitoes, lice, fleas, and mites are notable for their annoying bites but are increasingly significant disease vectors even in the United States.

  18. Epidemiology and control of malaria and other arthropod born diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. J. López-Antuñano

    1992-01-01

    Full Text Available Malaria and other arthropod born diseases remain a serious public health problem affecting the lives and health of certain social groups when the two basic strategies to control fail due to : (1 the lack of effective chemoprophylaxis/chemotherapy or the rapid development of drug resistance of the infectious agents and (2 the ineffectiveness of pesticides or the arthropod vectors develop resistance to them. These situations enhances the need for the design and implementation of other alternatives for sustainable health programmes. The application of the epidemiological methods is essential not only for analyzing the relevant data for the understanding of the biological characteristics of the infectious agents, their reservoirs and vectors and the methods for their control, but also for the assessment of the human behaviour, the environmental, social and economic factors involved in disease transmission and the capacity of the health systems to implement interventions for both changes in human behaviour and environmental management to purpose guaranteed prevention and control of malaria and other arthropod born diseases with efficiency, efficacy and equity. This paper discuss the evolution of the malaria arthropod diseases programmes in the American Region and the perspectives for their integration into health promotion programs and emphasis is made in the need to establish solid basis in the decision-making process for the selection of intervention strategies to remove the risk factors determining the probability to get sick or die from ABDs. The implications of the general planning and the polices to be adopted in an area should be analyzed in the light of programme feasibility at the local level, in the multisectoral context specific social groups and taking in consideration the principles of stratification and equity

  19. Immobilizing and lethal effects of spider venoms on the cockroach and the common mealbeetle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedel, T; Nentwig, W

    1989-01-01

    Immobilizing and lethal effects of the venoms obtained from six spider species (Brachypelma albopilosum, Atrax robustus, Cupiennius salei, Selenops mexicanus, Tegenaria atrica, Argiope bruennichi) were tested on Blatta orientalis (cockroach) and Tenebrio molitor (common mealbeetle). The immobilizing effects were quantified by measuring insect locomotor activity in circle arenas observed over 72 hr after venom injection. Both insect species showed cramps, quivering and jerking of the limbs as well as flaccid paralysis after venom injection. Through relative toxicity of the venoms tested is the same in T. molitor and B. orientalis, T. molitor is absolutely less sensitive to spider venoms. The effects on locomotor activity show time characteristics specific for each venom. A dependence of the venom paralyzing effects on insect locomotor activity, low intensity of the initial excitatory phase of the venom effects and partial recovery of the insects was found with A. bruennichi and T. atrica venom. The maximal venom yields of A. bruennichi and S. mexicanus are not lethal to B. orientalis, indicating that the mere immobilizing effects of spider venoms are far more crucial to prey capture than their lethal effects. The contribution of a variety of differently acting neurotoxic components in spider venoms to the observed venom effects on insects and the significance of the venoms in spider nutrition, hunting behaviour and ecology are discussed.

  20. Production and packaging of a biological arsenal: evolution of centipede venoms under morphological constraint.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Undheim, Eivind A B; Hamilton, Brett R; Kurniawan, Nyoman D; Bowlay, Greg; Cribb, Bronwen W; Merritt, David J; Fry, Bryan G; King, Glenn F; Venter, Deon J

    2015-03-31

    Venom represents one of the most extreme manifestations of a chemical arms race. Venoms are complex biochemical arsenals, often containing hundreds to thousands of unique protein toxins. Despite their utility for prey capture, venoms are energetically expensive commodities, and consequently it is hypothesized that venom complexity is inversely related to the capacity of a venomous animal to physically subdue prey. Centipedes, one of the oldest yet least-studied venomous lineages, appear to defy this rule. Although scutigeromorph centipedes produce less complex venom than those secreted by scolopendrid centipedes, they appear to rely heavily on venom for prey capture. We show that the venom glands are large and well developed in both scutigerid and scolopendrid species, but that scutigerid forcipules lack the adaptations that allow scolopendrids to inflict physical damage on prey and predators. Moreover, we reveal that scolopendrid venom glands have evolved to accommodate a much larger number of secretory cells and, by using imaging mass spectrometry, we demonstrate that toxin production is heterogeneous across these secretory units. We propose that the differences in venom complexity between centipede orders are largely a result of morphological restrictions of the venom gland, and consequently there is a strong correlation between the morphological and biochemical complexity of this unique venom system. The current data add to the growing body of evidence that toxins are not expressed in a spatially homogenous manner within venom glands, and they suggest that the link between ecology and toxin evolution is more complex than previously thought.

  1. Brown spider venom toxins interact with cell surface and are endocytosed by rabbit endothelial cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nowatzki, Jenifer; de Sene, Reginaldo Vieira; Paludo, Katia Sabrina; Veiga, Silvio Sanches; Oliver, Constance; Jamur, Maria Célia; Nader, Helena Bonciani; Trindade, Edvaldo S; Franco, Célia Regina C

    2010-09-15

    Bites from the Loxosceles genus (brown spiders) cause severe clinical symptoms, including dermonecrotic injury, hemorrhage, hemolysis, platelet aggregation and renal failure. Histological findings of dermonecrotic lesions in animals exposed to Loxosceles intermedia venom show numerous vascular alterations. Study of the hemorrhagic consequences of the venom in endothelial cells has demonstrated that the degeneration of blood vessels results not only from degradation of the extracellular matrix molecule or massive leukocyte infiltration, but also from a direct and primary activity of the venom on endothelial cells. Exposure of an endothelial cell line in vitro to L. intermedia venom induce morphological alterations, such as cell retraction and disadhesion to the extracellular matrix. The aim of the present study was to investigate the interaction between the venom toxins and the endothelial cell surface and their possible internalization, in order to illuminate the information about the deleterious effect triggered by venom. After treating endothelial cells with venom toxins, we observed that the venom interacts with cell surface. Venom treatment also can cause a reduction of cell surface glycoconjugates. When cells were permeabilized, it was possible to verify that some venom toxins were internalized by the endothelial cells. The venom internalization involves endocytic vesicles and the venom was detected in the lysosomes. However, no damage to lysosomal integrity was observed, suggesting that the cytotoxic effect evoked by L. intermedia venom on endothelial cells is not mediated by venom internalization.

  2. [Snake venom metalloproteinases: structure, biosynthesis and function(s)].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Limam, I; El Ayeb, M; Marrakchi, N

    2010-01-01

    The biochemical and the pharmacological characterization of snake venoms revealed an important structural and functional polymorphism of proteins which they contain. Among them, snake venom metalloproteases (SVMPs) constitute approximatively 20 to 60% of the whole venom proteins. During the last decades, a significant progress was performed against structure studies and the biosynthesis of the SVMPs. Indeed, several metalloproteases were isolated and characterized against their structural and pharmacological properties. In this review, we report the most important properties concerning the classification, the structure of the various domains of the SVMPs as well as their biosynthesis and their activities as potential therapeutic agents.

  3. Genetic diversity in aspen and its relation to arthropod abundance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Chunxia; Vornam, Barbara; Volmer, Katharina; Prinz, Kathleen; Kleemann, Frauke; Köhler, Lars; Polle, Andrea; Finkeldey, Reiner

    2014-01-01

    The ecological consequences of biodiversity have become a prominent public issue. Little is known on the effect of genetic diversity on ecosystem services. Here, a diversity experiment was established with European and North American aspen (Populus tremula, P. tremuloides) planted in plots representing either a single deme only or combinations of two, four and eight demes. The goals of this study were to explore the complex inter- and intraspecific genetic diversity of aspen and to then relate three measures for diversity (deme diversity, genetic diversity determined as Shannon index or as expected heterozygosity) to arthropod abundance. Microsatellite and AFLP markers were used to analyze the genetic variation patterns within and between the aspen demes and deme mixtures. Large differences were observed regarding the genetic diversity within demes. An analysis of molecular variance revealed that most of the total genetic diversity was found within demes, but the genetic differentiation among demes was also high. The complex patterns of genetic diversity and differentiation resulted in large differences of the genetic variation within plots. The average diversity increased from plots with only one deme to plots with two, four, and eight demes, respectively and separated plots with and without American aspen. To test whether intra- and interspecific diversity impacts on ecosystem services, arthropod abundance was determined. Increasing genetic diversity of aspen was related to increasing abundance of arthropods. However, the relationship was mainly driven by the presence of American aspen suggesting that species identity overrode the effect of intraspecific variation of European aspen.

  4. Preliminary observations of arthropods associated with buried carrion on Oahu.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rysavy, Noel M; Goff, M Lee

    2015-03-01

    Several studies in Hawaii have focused on arthropod succession and decomposition patterns of surface remains, but the current research presents the first study to focus on shallow burials in this context. Three domestic pig carcasses (Sus scrofa L.) were buried at the depths of 20-40 cm in silty clay loam soil on an exposed ridge on the leeward side of the volcanically formed Koolau Mountain Range. One carcass was exhumed after 3 weeks, another after 6 weeks, and the last carcass was exhumed after 9 weeks. An inventory of arthropod taxa present on the carrion and in the surrounding soil and observations pertaining to decomposition were recorded at each exhumation. The longer the carrion was buried, the greater the diversity of arthropod species that were recovered from the remains. Biomass loss was calculated to be 49% at the 3-week interval, 56% at the 6-week interval, and 59% at the 9-week interval.

  5. Microbial control of arthropod pests of tropical tree fruits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dolinski, Claudia; Lacey, Lawrence A

    2007-01-01

    A multitude of insects and mites attack fruit crops throughout the tropics. The traditional method for controlling most of these pests is the application of chemical pesticides. Growing concern on the negative environmental effects has encouraged the development of alternatives. Inundatively and inoculatively applied microbial control agents (virus, bacteria, fungi, and entomopathogenic nematodes) have been developed as alternative control methods of a wide variety of arthropods including tropical fruit pests. The majority of the research and applications in tropical fruit agroecosystems has been conducted in citrus, banana, coconut, and mango. Successful microbial control initiatives of citrus pests and mites have been reported. Microbial control of arthropod pests of banana includes banana weevil, Cosmopolites sordidus Germar (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) (with EPNs and fungi) among others Oryctes rhinoceros (L.) is one of the most important pests of coconut and one of the most successful uses of non-occluded virus for classical biological control. Key pests of mango that have been controlled with microbial control agents include fruit flies (Diptera: Tephritidae) (with EPNs and fungi), and other pests. Also successful is the microbial control of arthropod pests of guava, papaya and pineapple. The challenge towards a broader application of entomopathogens is the development of successful combinations of entomopathogens, predators, and parasitoids along with other interventions to produce effective and sustainable pest management.

  6. Analysis of Fang Puncture Wound Patterns in Isfahan Province’s, Iran, Venomous and Non-Venomous Snakes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dehghani R.1 PhD,

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Aims Venomous snake bites are public health problems in different parts of the world. The most specific mainstay in the treatment of envenomation is anti-venom. To treat the envenomation, it is very important to identify the offending species. This study was designed to determine the penetrating pattern of fangs and teeth of some viper snakes. Materials & Methods This descriptive study was performed on live venomous and nonvenomous snakes from 2010 till 2011. All 47 sample snakes were collected from different regions of Isfahan province such as Kashan City, Ghamsar, Niasar, Mashhad Ardehal, Taher- Abad and Khozagh. Their mouths were inspected every two weeks and development of their fangs and teeth were recorded by taking clear digital photos. Fangs and teeth patterns of samples were drawn and the results were compared. Findings One or two wounds appeared as typical fang marks at the bite site of venomous snakes while non-venomous snakes had two carved rows of small teeth. Three different teeth and fang patterns were recognized in venomous snakes which were completely different. Conclusion The fang marks of venomous snakes do not always have a common and classic pattern and there are at least 3 different patterns in Isfahan province, Iran.

  7. Recruitment of Glycosyl Hydrolase Proteins in a Cone Snail Venomous Arsenal: Further Insights into Biomolecular Features of Conus Venoms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philippe Favreau

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available 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.

  8. Recombinant phospholipase A1 (Ves v 1 from yellow jacket venom for improved diagnosis of hymenoptera venom hypersensitivity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grunwald Thomas

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Hymenoptera venoms are known to cause life-threatening IgE-mediated anaphylactic reactions in allergic individuals. Proper diagnosis of hymenoptera venom allergy using venom extracts is severely affected by molecular cross-reactivities. Although non-glycosylated marker allergens would facilitate the identification of the culprit venom, the major allergen phospholipase A1 (Ves v 1 from yellow jacket venom (YJV remained unavailable so far. Methods Expression of Ves v 1 as wild type and enzymatically inactivated mutant and Ves v 5 in insect cells yielded soluble proteins that were purified via affinity chromatography. Functionality of the recombinant allergens was assessed by enzymatic and biophysical analyses as well as basophil activation tests. Diagnostic relevance was addressed by ELISA-based analyses of sera of YJV-sensitized patients. Results Both major allergens Ves v 1 and Ves v 5 could be produced in insect cells in secreted soluble form. The recombinant proteins exhibited their particular biochemical and functional characteristics and were capable for activation of human basophils. Assessment of IgE reactivity of sera of YJV-sensitized and double-sensitized patients emphasised the relevance of Ves v 1 in hymenoptera venom allergy. In contrast to the use of singular molecules the combined use of both molecules enabled a reliable assignment of sensitisation to YJV for more than 90% of double-sensitised patients. Conclusions The recombinant availability of Ves v 1 from yellow jacket venom will contribute to a more detailed understanding of the molecular and allergological mechanisms of insect venoms and may provide a valuable tool for diagnostic and therapeutic approaches in hymenoptera venom allergy.

  9. Antimetastatic Integrin as Inhibitors of Snake Venoms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felix Rosenow

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Metastasis comprises several subsequent steps including local invasion and intravasation at the primary site, then their adhesion/arrest within the vessels of host organs followed by their extravasation and infiltration into the target organ stroma. In contrast to previous studies which have used aspartate-glycine-arginine (RGD peptides and antibodies against integrins, we used rare collagen- and laminin-antagonizing integrin inhibitors from snake venoms to analyze the colonization of the liver by tumor cells both by intravital microscopy and in vitro. Adhesion of liver-targeting tumor cells to the sinusoid wall components, laminin-1 and fibronectin, is essential for liver metastasis. This step is inhibited by lebein-1, but not by lebein-2 or rhodocetin. Both lebeins from the Vipera lebetina venom block integrin interactions with laminins in an RGD-independent manner. Rhodocetin is an antagonist of α2β1 integrin, a collagen receptor on many tumor cells. Subsequent to tumor cell arrest, extravasation into the liver stroma and micrometastasis are efficiently delayed by rhodocetin. This underlines the importance of α2β1 integrin interaction with the reticular collagen I-rich fibers in liver stroma. Antagonists of laminin- and collagen-binding integrins could be valuable tools to individually block the direct interactions of tumor cells with distinct matrix components of the Disse space, thereby reducing liver metastasis.

  10. Antineoplastic Effects of Honey Bee Venom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad Nabiuni

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Background: Bee venom (BV, like many other complementary medicines, has been used for thousands of years for the treatment of a range of diseases. More recently, BV is also being considered as an effective composition for the treatment of cancer. Cancer is a major worldwide problem. It is obvious that the identification of compounds that can activate apoptosis could be effective on the treatment of cancer. BV is a very complicated mixture of active peptides, enzymes, and biologically active amines. The two main components of BV are melittin and phospholipase A2 (PLA2. Of these two components, melittin, the major active ingredient of BV, has been identified to induce apoptosis and to possess anti-tumor effects. We tried to review antineoplastic effects of BV in this study. Materials and Methods: The related articles were derived from different data bases such as PubMed, Elsevier Science, and Google Scholar using keywords including bee venom, cancer, and apoptosis.Results: According to the results of this study, BV can induce apoptosis and inhibit tumor cell growth and metastasis. Results of in vivo experiments show that the anti-tumor effect of the BV is highly dependent on the manner of injection as well as the distance between the area of injection and the tumor cells.Conclusion: The results obtained from the reported studies revealed that BV has anti-cancer effects and can be used as an effective chemotherapeutic agent against tumors in the future.

  11. Hormone-like peptides in the venoms of marine cone snails

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Robinson, Samuel D.; Li, Qing; Bandyopadhyay, Pradip K.

    2017-01-01

    The venoms of cone snails (genus Conus) are remarkably complex, consisting of hundreds of typically short, disulfide-rich peptides termed conotoxins. These peptides have diverse pharmacological targets, with injection of venom eliciting a range of physiological responses, including sedation...... in the venoms of cone snails we systematically mined the venom gland transcriptomes of several cone snail species and examined secreted venom peptides in dissected and injected venom of the Australian cone snail Conus victoriae. Using this approach we identified several novel hormone/neuropeptide-like toxins...

  12. Bioinformatic prediction of arthropod/nematode-like peptides in non-arthropod, non-nematode members of the Ecdysozoa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christie, Andrew E; Nolan, Daniel H; Garcia, Zachery A; McCoole, Matthew D; Harmon, Sarah M; Congdon-Jones, Benjamin; Ohno, Paul; Hartline, Niko; Congdon, Clare Bates; Baer, Kevin N; Lenz, Petra H

    2011-02-01

    The Onychophora, Priapulida and Tardigrada, along with the Arthropoda, Nematoda and several other small phyla, form the superphylum Ecdysozoa. Numerous peptidomic studies have been undertaken for both the arthropods and nematodes, resulting in the identification of many peptides from each group. In contrast, little is known about the peptides used as paracrines/hormones by species from the other ecdysozoan taxa. Here, transcriptome mining and bioinformatic peptide prediction were used to identify peptides in members of the Onychophora, Priapulida and Tardigrada, the only non-arthropod, non-nematode members of the Ecdysozoa for which there are publicly accessible expressed sequence tags (ESTs). The extant ESTs for each phylum were queried using 106 arthropod/nematode peptide precursors. Transcripts encoding calcitonin-like diuretic hormone and pigment-dispersing hormone (PDH) were identified for the onychophoran Peripatopsis sedgwicki, with transcripts encoding C-type allatostatin (C-AST) and FMRFamide-like peptide identified for the priapulid Priapulus caudatus. For the Tardigrada, transcripts encoding members of the A-type allatostatin, C-AST, insect kinin, orcokinin, PDH and tachykinin-related peptide families were identified, all but one from Hypsibius dujardini (the exception being a Milnesium tardigradum orcokinin-encoding transcript). The proteins deduced from these ESTs resulted in the prediction of 48 novel peptides, six onychophoran, eight priapulid and 34 tardigrade, which are the first described from these phyla.

  13. The i5K Initiative: advancing arthropod genomics for knowledge, human health, agriculture, and the environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Insects and their arthropod relatives including mites, spiders, and crustaceans play major roles in the world's terrestrial, aquatic, and marine ecosystems. Arthropods compete with humans for food and transmit devastating diseases. They also comprise the most diverse and successful branch of metazoan evolution, with millions of extant species. Here, we describe an international effort to guide arthropod genomic efforts, from species prioritization to methodology and informatics. The 5000 arthropod genomes initiative (i5K) community met formally in 2012 to discuss a roadmap for sequencing and analyzing 5000 high-priority arthropods and is continuing this effort via pilot projects, the development of standard operating procedures, and training of students and career scientists. With university, governmental, and industry support, the i5K Consortium aspires to deliver sequences and analytical tools for each of the arthropod branches and each of the species having beneficial and negative effects on humankind.

  14. Component Analysis of Bee Venom from lune to September

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ki Rok Kwon

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available Objectives : The aim of this study was to observe variation of Bee Venom content from the collection period. Methods : Content analysis of Bee Venom was rendered using HPLC method by standard melittin Results : Analyzing melittin content using HPLC, 478.97mg/g at june , 493.89mg/g at july, 468.18mg/g at August and 482.15mg/g was containing in Bee Venom at september. So the change of melittin contents was no significance from June to September. Conclusion : Above these results, we concluded carefully that collecting time was not important factor for the quality control of Bee Venom, restricted the period from June to September.

  15. Biotechnological applications of brown spider (Loxosceles genus) venom toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Senff-Ribeiro, Andrea; Henrique da Silva, Paulo; Chaim, Olga Meiri; Gremski, Luiza Helena; Paludo, Kátia Sabrina; Bertoni da Silveira, Rafael; Gremski, Waldemiro; Mangili, Oldemir Carlos; Veiga, Silvio Sanches

    2008-01-01

    Loxoscelism (the term used to define accidents by the bite of brown spiders) has been reported worldwide. Clinical manifestations following brown spider bites are frequently associated with skin degeneration, a massive inflammatory response at the injured region, intravascular hemolysis, platelet aggregation causing thrombocytopenia and renal disturbances. The mechanisms by which the venom exerts its noxious effects are currently under investigation. The whole venom is a complex mixture of toxins enriched with low molecular mass proteins in the range of 5-40 kDa. Toxins including alkaline phosphatase, hyaluronidase, metalloproteases (astacin-like proteases), low molecular mass (5.6-7.9 kDa) insecticidal peptides and phospholipases-D (dermonecrotic toxins) have been identified in the venom. The purpose of the present review is to describe biotechnological applications of whole venom or some toxins, with especial emphasis upon molecular biology findings obtained in the last years.

  16. Applications of snake venoms in treatment of cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vagish Kumar Laxman Shanbhag

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Snake venoms are folk medicines used since ages. The components of snake venoms have high specific affinity and actions on cells and cell components. Also snake venoms are largely cytotoxic to tumor cells than normal cells. In addition to these, they have several therapeutic actions that make them an attractive option in the management of cancer. The advent of modern technologies has greatly helped in extracting and identifying new components of therapeutic interests in short time. The article highlights the importance of snake venoms in the management of cancer, so as to motivate curious researchers to devote their skills in this fascinating area. This in turn may bring hope, smile and relief to several cancer patients in future.

  17. Applications of snake venoms in treatment of cancer

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Vagish; Kumar; Laxman; Shanbhag

    2015-01-01

    Snake venoms are folk medicines used since ages. The components of snake venoms have high specific affinity and actions on cells and cell components. Also snake venoms are largely cytotoxic to tumor cells than normal cells. In addition to these, they have several therapeutic actions that make them an attractive option in the management of cancer. The advent of modern technologies has greatly helped in extracting and identifying new components of therapeutic interests in short time. The article highlights the importance of snake venoms in the management of cancer, so as to motivate curious researchers to devote their skills in this fascinating area. This in turn may bring hope, smile and relief to several cancer patients in future.

  18. Neurobiology: venom of wasps and initiation of movements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zill, Sasha N; Keller, Bridget R

    2008-06-24

    The ability to initiate movements can be impaired in some brain injuries even though motor actions proceed normally once they are begun. The effects of venom that wasps use in preying upon cockroaches could provide insights into this problem.

  19. Effects of Sweet Bee Venom and Bee Venom on the Heart Rate Variability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yook Tae-Han

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available Objective : In this study, we investigated the effects of Sweet Bee Venom(SBV and Bee Venom(BV at a acupoint, HT7(Shinmun on the Heart Rate Variability(HRV in the healthy man. And we tried to observe how Sweet Bee Venom and Bee Venom affects on the balance of the autonomic nervous system. Methods : We investigated on 22 heathy volunteers consisted of 10 subjects in SBV group and 12 subjects in BV group. Study form was a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind clinical trial. 22 subjects of each group were injected SBV and BV at HT7(Shinmun. And we measured HRV by QECG-3:LXC3203 (LAXTHA Inc. Korea on 7 times : before and after injection per 5minutes during 30minutes. Results : 1. After SBV injection, Mean-RR was significantly high from 0 to 10 minutes, Mean-HRV was significantly low from 0 to 10 minutes, SDNN was significantly high after 25minutes, Complexity was significantly high from 5 to 10minutes and RMSSD was significantly high from 5 to 10minutes. 2. Complexity of SBV Group significantly decreased from 20 to 25minutes, RMSSD of SBV Group significantly increased from 10 to 15minute and from 20~25minutes, SDSD of SBV Group significantly increased from 10 to 15 minute and from 20~25minutes compared with that of BV group. 3. After SBV injection, Ln(VLF was significantly from 25 to 30minutes. Conclusions : The results suggest that SBV in heathy adult man tend to activate the autonomic nervous system compared to BV within normal range.

  20. Peptidomic and transcriptomic profiling of four distinct spider venoms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oldrati, Vera; Koua, Dominique; Allard, Pierre-Marie; Hulo, Nicolas; Arrell, Miriam; Nentwig, Wolfgang; Lisacek, Frédérique; Wolfender, Jean-Luc; Kuhn-Nentwig, Lucia; Stöcklin, Reto

    2017-01-01

    Venom based research is exploited to find novel candidates for the development of innovative pharmacological tools, drug candidates and new ingredients for cosmetic and agrochemical industries. Moreover, venomics, as a well-established approach in systems biology, helps to elucidate the genetic mechanisms of the production of such a great molecular biodiversity. Today the advances made in the proteomics, transcriptomics and bioinformatics fields, favor venomics, allowing the in depth study of complex matrices and the elucidation even of minor compounds present in minute biological samples. The present study illustrates a rapid and efficient method developed for the elucidation of venom composition based on NextGen mRNA sequencing of venom glands and LC-MS/MS venom proteome profiling. The analysis of the comprehensive data obtained was focused on cysteine rich peptide toxins from four spider species originating from phylogenetically distant families for comparison purposes. The studied species were Heteropoda davidbowie (Sparassidae), Poecilotheria formosa (Theraphosidae), Viridasius fasciatus (Viridasiidae) and Latrodectus mactans (Theridiidae). This led to a high resolution profiling of 284 characterized cysteine rich peptides, 111 of which belong to the Inhibitor Cysteine Knot (ICK) structural motif. The analysis of H. davidbowie venom revealed a high richness in term of venom diversity: 95 peptide sequences were identified; out of these, 32 peptides presented the ICK structural motif and could be classified in six distinct families. The profiling of P. formosa venom highlighted the presence of 126 peptide sequences, with 52 ICK toxins belonging to three structural distinct families. V. fasciatus venom was shown to contain 49 peptide sequences, out of which 22 presented the ICK structural motif and were attributed to five families. The venom of L. mactans, until now studied for its large neurotoxins (Latrotoxins), revealed the presence of 14 cysteine rich

  1. RSS (http://www.iaees.org/publications/journals/arthropods/rss.xml

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arthropods (ISSN 2224-4255

    Full Text Available Arthropods ISSN 2224-4255 URL: http://www.iaees.org/publications/journals/arthropods/online-version.asp RSS: http://www.iaees.org/publications/journals/arthropods/rss.xml E-mail: arthropods@iaees.org Editor-in-Chief: WenJun Zhang Aims and Scope ARTHROPODS (ISSN 2224-4255 is an international journal devoted to the publication of articles on various aspects of arthropods, e.g., ecology, biogeography, systematics, biodiversity (species diversity, genetic diversity, et al., conservation, control, etc. The journal provides a forum for examining the importance of arthropods in biosphere (both terrestrial and marine ecosystems and human life in such fields as agriculture, forestry, fishery, environmental management and human health. The scope of Arthropods is wide and embraces all arthropods-insects, arachnids, crustaceans, centipedes, millipedes, and other arthropods. Articles/short communications on new taxa (species, genus, families, orders, etc. and new records of arthropods are particularly welcome. Authors can submit their works to the email box of this journal, arthropods@iaees.org. All manuscripts submitted to this journal must be previously unpublished and may not be considered for publication elsewhere at any time during review period of this journal. Authors are asked to read Author Guidelines before submitting manuscripts. In addition to free submissions from authors around the world, special issues are also accepted. The organizer of a special issue can collect submissions (yielded from a research project, a research group, etc. on a specific research topic, or submissions of a scientific conference for publication of special issue.

  2. Prototypical Arthropod Gene Content and Genome Organisation in the Centipede Strigamia maritima

    OpenAIRE

    2014-01-01

    Myriapods (e.g., centipedes and millipedes) display a simple homonomous body plan relative to other arthropods. All members of the class are terrestrial, but they attained terrestriality independently of insects. Myriapoda is the only arthropod class not represented by a sequenced genome. We present an analysis of the genome of the centipede Strigamia maritima. It retains a compact genome that has undergone less gene loss and shuffling than previously sequenced arthropods, and many orthologue...

  3. [The concept of medical entomology: the management of the influence of arthropods on human health].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rasnitsyn, S P

    1997-01-01

    The tasks of medical entomology are analyzed with special reference to the development of methods of protection against the harmful influence of arthropods on human health and the use of these animals in health sciences. Special attention is paid to the following problems: characterization of individual and group features of humans and their relationship with arthropods, elucidation of the properties of arthropods, determination of the state of their populations, estimation of the efficiency of controlling measures, their ecological consequences, etc.

  4. [Technogenic factors of ecological impact on properties of snake venom].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abiev, G A; Babaev, E T; Topchieva, Sh A; Chuburidze, T B; Kikalishvili, B Iu

    2009-12-01

    In article comparative literary and experimental data about degree of a level of scrutiny of snake venoms are presented. Obtained data shows that increased pollution of industrial regions results in higher levels of heavy metals in snake venom. Change of physical and chemical parametres, and also pharmacological activity and toxicity of zootoxins under influence biotics, abiotics factors and including heavy metals and radiation is noted.

  5. Venom Proteome of the Box Jellyfish Chironex fleckeri

    OpenAIRE

    2012-01-01

    The nematocyst is a complex intracellular structure unique to Cnidaria. When triggered to discharge, the nematocyst explosively releases a long spiny, tubule that delivers an often highly venomous mixture of components. The box jellyfish, Chironex fleckeri, produces exceptionally potent and rapid-acting venom and its stings to humans cause severe localized and systemic effects that are potentially life-threatening. In an effort to identify toxins that could be responsible for the serious heal...

  6. Triacontyl p-coumarate: an inhibitor of snake venom metalloproteinases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mendes, M M; Vieira, S A P B; Gomes, M S R; Paula, V F; Alcântara, T M; Homsi-Brandeburgo, M I; dos Santos, J I; Magro, A J; Fontes, M R M; Rodrigues, V M

    2013-02-01

    Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) participate in a number of important biological, physiological and pathophysiological processes and are primarily responsible for the local tissue damage characteristic of viperid snake envenomations. The use of medicinal plant extracts as antidotes against animal venoms is an old practice, especially against snake envenomations. Such plants are sources of many pharmacologically active compounds and have been shown to antagonize the effects of some venoms and toxins. The present study explores the activity of triacontyl p-coumarate (PCT), an active compound isolated from root bark of Bombacopsis glabra vegetal extract (Bg), against harmful effects of Bothropoides pauloensis snake venom and isolated toxins (SVMPs or phospholipase A(2)). Before inhibition assays, Bg or PCT was incubated with venom or toxins at ratios of 1:1 and 1:5 (w/w; venom or isolated toxins/PCT) for 30 min at 37°C. Treatment conditions were also assayed to simulate snakebite with PCT inoculated at either the same venom or toxin site. PCT neutralized fibrinogenolytic activity and plasmatic fibrinogen depletion induced by B. pauloensis venom or isolated toxin. PCT also efficiently inhibited the hemorrhagic (3MDH - minimum hemorrhagic dose injected i.d into mice) and myotoxic activities induced by Jararhagin, a metalloproteinase from B. jararaca at 1:5 ratio (toxin: inhibitor, w/w) when it was previously incubated with PCT and injected into mice or when PCT was administered after toxin injection. Docking simulations using data on a metalloproteinase (Neuwiedase) structure suggest that the binding between the protein and the inhibitor occurs mainly in the active site region causing blockade of the enzymatic reaction by displacement of catalytic water. Steric hindrance may also play a role in the mechanism since the PCT hydrophobic tail was found to interact with the loop associated with substrate anchorage. Thus, PCT may provide a alternative to complement

  7. IN VIVO NEUTRALIZATION OF NAJA NIGRICOLLIS VENOM BY UVARIA CHAMAE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Omale James

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Uvaria chamae is a well known medicinal plant in Nigerian traditional medicine for the management of many diseases, but investigations concerning its pharmacological characteristics are rare. In this study, we evaluate its venom neutralizing properties against Naja nigricollis venom in rats. Freshly collected Uvaria chamae leaves were air dried, powdered and extracted in methanol. To study the antivenom properties, albino rats were orally administered with a dose of 400 mg kg-1 body weight and one hour later, the venom was administered intraperitoneally at a dose of 0.08 mg kg-1 body weight of rats. Albino rats (male weighing between 180-200g were randomly divided into five (5 groups of three (3. Groups 1-5 received water, normal saline, venom, Uvaria chamae and venom, Uvaria chamae respectively. Blood clothing time, bleeding time, antipyretic activity, haemoglobin, RBC, WBC, creatine kinase, AST, ALP and ALT activities total protein antioxidant activity and some blood electrolytes, plasma urea and uric acid were measured. Our results showed that Uvaria chamae methanol extract neutralized some biological effects of Naja nigricollis venom. The venom increased the rectal temperature, enzyme activities, bleeding time and other blood parameters. The plant extract was able to reduce these parameters in the extract treated groups. Details of the results are discussed. From this study, it is clear that U. chamae leaf extract had antivenom activity in animal models. The above results indicate that the plant extract possess potent snake venom neutralizing capacity and could potentially be used for therapeutic purpose in case of snake bite envenomation.

  8. Molecular Diversity and Gene Evolution of the Venom Arsenal of Terebridae Predatory Marine Snails.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorson, Juliette; Ramrattan, Girish; Verdes, Aida; Wright, Elizabeth M; Kantor, Yuri; Rajaram Srinivasan, Ramakrishnan; Musunuri, Raj; Packer, Daniel; Albano, Gabriel; Qiu, Wei-Gang; Holford, Mandë

    2015-05-28

    Venom peptides from predatory organisms are a resource for investigating evolutionary processes such as adaptive radiation or diversification, and exemplify promising targets for biomedical drug development. Terebridae are an understudied lineage of conoidean snails, which also includes cone snails and turrids. Characterization of cone snail venom peptides, conotoxins, has revealed a cocktail of bioactive compounds used to investigate physiological cellular function, predator-prey interactions, and to develop novel therapeutics. However, venom diversity of other conoidean snails remains poorly understood. The present research applies a venomics approach to characterize novel terebrid venom peptides, teretoxins, from the venom gland transcriptomes of Triplostephanus anilis and Terebra subulata. Next-generation sequencing and de novo assembly identified 139 putative teretoxins that were analyzed for the presence of canonical peptide features as identified in conotoxins. To meet the challenges of de novo assembly, multiple approaches for cross validation of findings were performed to achieve reliable assemblies of venom duct transcriptomes and to obtain a robust portrait of Terebridae venom. Phylogenetic methodology was used to identify 14 teretoxin gene superfamilies for the first time, 13 of which are unique to the Terebridae. Additionally, basic local algorithm search tool homology-based searches to venom-related genes and posttranslational modification enzymes identified a convergence of certain venom proteins, such as actinoporin, commonly found in venoms. This research provides novel insights into venom evolution and recruitment in Conoidean predatory marine snails and identifies a plethora of terebrid venom peptides that can be used to investigate fundamental questions pertaining to gene evolution.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Libia Sanz

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-06-07

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  12. Venom proteome of the box jellyfish Chironex fleckeri.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diane L Brinkman

    Full Text Available The nematocyst is a complex intracellular structure unique to Cnidaria. When triggered to discharge, the nematocyst explosively releases a long spiny, tubule that delivers an often highly venomous mixture of components. The box jellyfish, Chironex fleckeri, produces exceptionally potent and rapid-acting venom and its stings to humans cause severe localized and systemic effects that are potentially life-threatening. In an effort to identify toxins that could be responsible for the serious health effects caused by C. fleckeri and related species, we used a proteomic approach to profile the protein components of C. fleckeri venom. Collectively, 61 proteins were identified, including toxins and proteins important for nematocyte development and nematocyst formation (nematogenesis. The most abundant toxins identified were isoforms of a taxonomically restricted family of potent cnidarian proteins. These toxins are associated with cytolytic, nociceptive, inflammatory, dermonecrotic and lethal properties and expansion of this important protein family goes some way to explaining the destructive and potentially fatal effects of C. fleckeri venom. Venom proteins and their post-translational modifications (PTMs were further characterized using toxin-specific antibodies and phosphoprotein/glycoprotein-specific stains. Results indicated that glycosylation is a common PTM of the toxin family while a lack of cross-reactivity by toxin-specific antibodies infers there is significant divergence in structure and possibly function among family members. This study provides insight into the depth and diversity of protein toxins produced by harmful box jellyfish and represents the first description of a cubozoan jellyfish venom proteome.

  13. Venom proteome of the box jellyfish Chironex fleckeri.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brinkman, Diane L; Aziz, Ammar; Loukas, Alex; Potriquet, Jeremy; Seymour, Jamie; Mulvenna, Jason

    2012-01-01

    The nematocyst is a complex intracellular structure unique to Cnidaria. When triggered to discharge, the nematocyst explosively releases a long spiny, tubule that delivers an often highly venomous mixture of components. The box jellyfish, Chironex fleckeri, produces exceptionally potent and rapid-acting venom and its stings to humans cause severe localized and systemic effects that are potentially life-threatening. In an effort to identify toxins that could be responsible for the serious health effects caused by C. fleckeri and related species, we used a proteomic approach to profile the protein components of C. fleckeri venom. Collectively, 61 proteins were identified, including toxins and proteins important for nematocyte development and nematocyst formation (nematogenesis). The most abundant toxins identified were isoforms of a taxonomically restricted family of potent cnidarian proteins. These toxins are associated with cytolytic, nociceptive, inflammatory, dermonecrotic and lethal properties and expansion of this important protein family goes some way to explaining the destructive and potentially fatal effects of C. fleckeri venom. Venom proteins and their post-translational modifications (PTMs) were further characterized using toxin-specific antibodies and phosphoprotein/glycoprotein-specific stains. Results indicated that glycosylation is a common PTM of the toxin family while a lack of cross-reactivity by toxin-specific antibodies infers there is significant divergence in structure and possibly function among family members. This study provides insight into the depth and diversity of protein toxins produced by harmful box jellyfish and represents the first description of a cubozoan jellyfish venom proteome.

  14. Screening for fibrinolytic activity in eight Viperid venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramírez, M S; Sánchez, E E; García-Prieto, C; Pérez, J C; Chapa, G R; McKeller, M R; Ramírez, R; De Anda, Y

    1999-09-01

    Snake venoms contain direct-acting fibrinolytic metalloproteinases (MMP) that could have important applications in medicine. Fibrinolytic enzymes isolated from venom can induce in vitro clot lysis by directly acting on a fibrin clot. The most ideal fibrinolytic enzyme would have high affinity for clots, dissolve clots directly without causing hemorrhage, and would not be neutralized in vivo by endogenous metalloproteinase inhibitors. The purpose of this study was to compare DEAE/HPLC venom profiles from Viperid snakes and identify fractions that contain fibrinolytic activity with no hemorrhagic activity and are not neutralized by animal sera. The sera selected were from four (Virginia opossum, Gray woodrat, Mexican ground squirrel, and Hispid cottonrat) animals known to neutralize hemorrhagic activity in snake venoms. Nineteen fractions from the Viperid venoms had fibrinolytic activity. Agkistrodon venom fractions contained the highest specific fibrinolytic activities. A. piscivorus leucostoma fraction 4 contained a high specific fibrinolytic activity, no hemorrhagic activity, and the fibrinolytic activity was not neutralized by the proteinase inhibitors of the four animal sera. A. contortrix laticinctus fraction 1 also had a high specific fibrinolytic activity and no hemorrhagic activity. However, the fibrinolytic activity was neutralized by Didelphis virginiana (Virginia opossum) serum.

  15. Embryotoxicity following repetitive maternal exposure to scorpion venom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    BN Hmed

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Although it is a frequent accident in a few countries, scorpion envenomation during pregnancy remains scarcely studied. In the present study, the effects of repetitive maternal exposure to Buthus occitanus tunetanus venom are investigated and its possible embryotoxic consequences on rats. Primigravid rats received a daily intraperitoneal dose of 1 mL/kg of saline solution or 300 µg/kg of crude scorpion venom, from the 7th to the 13th day of gestation. On the 21st day, the animals were deeply anesthetized using diethyl-ether. Then, blood was collected for chemical parameter analysis. Following euthanasia, morphometric measurements were carried out. The results showed a significant increase in maternal heart and lung absolute weights following venom treatment. However, the mean placental weight per rat was significantly diminished. Furthermore, blood urea concentration was higher in exposed rats (6.97 ± 0.62 mmol/L than in those receiving saline solution (4.94 ± 0.90 mmol/L. Many organs of venom-treated rat fetuses (brain, liver, kidney and spleen were smaller than those of controls. On the contrary, fetal lungs were significantly heavier in fetuses exposed to venom (3.2 ± 0.4 g than in the others (3.0 ± 0.2 g. Subcutaneous blood clots, microphthalmia and total body and tail shortening were also observed in venom-treated fetuses. It is concluded that scorpion envenomation during pregnancy potentially causes intrauterine fetal alterations and growth impairment.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  17. Extracellular matrix molecules as targets for brown spider venom toxins

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    Veiga S.S.

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available Loxoscelism, the term used to describe lesions and clinical manifestations induced by brown spider's venom (Loxosceles genus, has attracted much attention over the last years. Brown spider bites have been reported to cause a local and acute inflammatory reaction that may evolve to dermonecrosis (a hallmark of envenomation and hemorrhage at the bite site, besides systemic manifestations such as thrombocytopenia, disseminated intravascular coagulation, hemolysis, and renal failure. The molecular mechanisms by which Loxosceles venoms induce injury are currently under investigation. In this review, we focused on the latest reports describing the biological and physiopathological aspects of loxoscelism, with reference mainly to the proteases recently described as metalloproteases and serine proteases, as well as on the proteolytic effects triggered by L. intermedia venom upon extracellular matrix constituents such as fibronectin, fibrinogen, entactin and heparan sulfate proteoglycan, besides the disruptive activity of the venom on Engelbreth-Holm-Swarm basement membranes. Degradation of these extracellular matrix molecules and the observed disruption of basement membranes could be related to deleterious activities of the venom such as loss of vessel and glomerular integrity and spreading of the venom toxins to underlying tissues.

  18. Arthropods of the great indoors: characterizing diversity inside urban and suburban homes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew A. Bertone

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Although humans and arthropods have been living and evolving together for all of our history, we know very little about the arthropods we share our homes with apart from major pest groups. Here we surveyed, for the first time, the complete arthropod fauna of the indoor biome in 50 houses (located in and around Raleigh, North Carolina, USA. We discovered high diversity, with a conservative estimate range of 32–211 morphospecies, and 24–128 distinct arthropod families per house. The majority of this indoor diversity (73% was made up of true flies (Diptera, spiders (Araneae, beetles (Coleoptera, and wasps and kin (Hymenoptera, especially ants: Formicidae. Much of the arthropod diversity within houses did not consist of synanthropic species, but instead included arthropods that were filtered from the surrounding landscape. As such, common pest species were found less frequently than benign species. Some of the most frequently found arthropods in houses, such as gall midges (Cecidomyiidae and book lice (Liposcelididae, are unfamiliar to the general public despite their ubiquity. These findings present a new understanding of the diversity, prevalence, and distribution of the arthropods in our daily lives. Considering their impact as household pests, disease vectors, generators of allergens, and facilitators of the indoor microbiome, advancing our knowledge of the ecology and evolution of arthropods in homes has major economic and human health implications.

  19. Canopy arthropods community within and among oak species in central Mexico

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Efraín TOVAR-SANCHEZ

    2009-01-01

    Quercus rugosa and Q.laurina are species that presents a wide geographical distribution range in temperate forests of Mexico. Oak canopies contain a considerable portion of arthropod diversity and the arthropods fauna fulfill a wide variety of ecological roles. We examined the effect of oak species and seasonal changes on some community structure parameters (diversity, composition, similarity, biomass, rare species, and density of arthropod fauna) of canopy arthropods. In total, 40 oak canopies were fogged during rainy and dry season. A total of 614 identified arthropod morphospecies were recognized belonging to 22 orders associated with tree canopies. A separation of host tree species during both seasons, suggesting a different community structure on host plants species was demonstrated by the principal component analyses (PCA), therefore, differences between oak species results in phenotypes that structure the composition of the arthropod community. Q.laurina registered the highest densities, diversity index and number of rare species in comparison with Q.rugosa. While arthropod biomass showed an inverse pattern. Trees more close to one another (spatial distance) register a more similar canopy arthropod fauna. This study suggests that the trees of Q.laurina could act as a center of biodiversity by the accumulation of arthropod fauna with a considerable number of rare species, which presents wide ecological roles or is involved in critical processes that maintain forest ecosystems[Current Zoology 55(2):132-144,2009].

  20. Arthropods of the great indoors: characterizing diversity inside urban and suburban homes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertone, Matthew A; Leong, Misha; Bayless, Keith M; Malow, Tara L F; Dunn, Robert R; Trautwein, Michelle D

    2016-01-01

    Although humans and arthropods have been living and evolving together for all of our history, we know very little about the arthropods we share our homes with apart from major pest groups. Here we surveyed, for the first time, the complete arthropod fauna of the indoor biome in 50 houses (located in and around Raleigh, North Carolina, USA). We discovered high diversity, with a conservative estimate range of 32-211 morphospecies, and 24-128 distinct arthropod families per house. The majority of this indoor diversity (73%) was made up of true flies (Diptera), spiders (Araneae), beetles (Coleoptera), and wasps and kin (Hymenoptera, especially ants: Formicidae). Much of the arthropod diversity within houses did not consist of synanthropic species, but instead included arthropods that were filtered from the surrounding landscape. As such, common pest species were found less frequently than benign species. Some of the most frequently found arthropods in houses, such as gall midges (Cecidomyiidae) and book lice (Liposcelididae), are unfamiliar to the general public despite their ubiquity. These findings present a new understanding of the diversity, prevalence, and distribution of the arthropods in our daily lives. Considering their impact as household pests, disease vectors, generators of allergens, and facilitators of the indoor microbiome, advancing our knowledge of the ecology and evolution of arthropods in homes has major economic and human health implications.

  1. Alexander Mikhailovich Zakharov and his works on the venom apparatus and venoms of some poisonous snakes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cherlin Vladimir Alexandrovich

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available The article gives brief biographical information about a very talented herpetologist Alexander M. Zakharov, and describes the general results of his works on the structure and function of venom glands of some poisonous snakes and their venoms. In his studies, he got the results, which are fundamentally different from the conventional concept of 30s - 70s of the XX century. Unfortunately, among physicians this concept has not changed up today. At that time it was thought that the poisons of Viperidae snakes are almost completely hemotoxic, and poisons of Elapidae (cobra are almost neurotoxic. But A.M.Zaharov found out, that poisons of both types of snakes (Viperidae and Elapidae include three groups of substances: hemotoxins, neurotoxins and non-toxic component – hyaluronidase. Each of these groups of substances is produced by independent part of venom glands and has its own special effect. Neurotoxins act on the central nervous system (mainly the respiratory center, but are greatly destroyed by means of the blood antigen properties and cannot pass through the hematoencephalic barrier. Hyaluronidase , connecting with neurotoxins, has an important property – to "smuggle" neurotoxins through the hematoencephalic barrier exactly into the target organ – the respiratory center in the central nervous system. In this case, neurotoxin enters the respiratory center not through the blood and lymph vessels, but directly through the nerve channel, through synapsis. The main function of hemotoxins is not to kill the victim, but to protect neurotoxins and hyaluronidase from the destructive activity of the victim's blood. Therefore, the target of the poisons of Viperidae and Elapidae snakes is the central nervous system of victims, but Elapidae has almost no hemotoxins. That’s why their striking effect can be achieved only by a strong increase in the amount of neurotoxins and hyaluronidase. Hemotoxins of Viperidae venoms permits to reduce the amount of

  2. Biochemical and pharmacological study of venom of the wolf spider Lycosa singoriensis

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    ZH Liu

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The wolf spider Lycosa singoriensis is a large and venomous spider distributed throughout northwestern China. Like other spider venoms, the wolf spider venom is a chemical cocktail. Its protein content is 0.659 mg protein/mg crude venom as determined by the Lowry method. MALDI-TOF analysis revealed that the venom peptides are highly diverse and may be divided into three groups characterized by three independent molecular ranges: 2,000 to 2,500 Da, 4,800 to 5,500 Da and 7,000 to 8,000 Da, respectively. This molecular distribution differs substantially from those of most spider venoms studied so far. This wolf spider venom has low neurotoxic action on mice, but it can induce hemolysis of human erythrocytes. Furthermore, the venom shows antimicrobial activity against prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells.

  3. Anti-venom potential of aqueous extract of stem bark of Mangifera indica L. against Daboia russellii (Russell's viper) venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dhananjaya, B L; Zameer, F; Girish, K S; D'Souza, Cletus J M

    2011-06-01

    Several plant extracts rich in pharmacologically active compounds have shown to antagonize venom of several species. Mangifera indica has been used against snakebite by the traditional healers. However, there is paucity of scientific data in support. In this study, we evaluated the antivenom potential of aqueous extract of stem bark of M. indica against D. russellii venom-induced pharmacological effects such as life myotoxicity, edema, LD50 etc. The extract inhibited the phospholipase, protease, hyaluronidase, 5'nucleotidase, ATPase and alkaline phosphomonoesterase activities with varying IC50 values. It significantly inhibited both metalloproteases and serine proteases activities. Further, the extract significantly reduced the myotoxicity of the venom, as evident by the reduction of serum creatin kinase and lactate dehydrogenase activities. Though the extract completely inhibited in vitro PLA2 activity, it was unable to completely inhibit in situ hemolytic and in vivo edema-inducing activities, usually brought about by PLA2s. In lethality studies, co-injection of the venom preincubated with the extract showed higher protection than the independent injection of venom, followed by the extract in the mice. However, in both the cases the extract -a cocktail of inhibitors significantly increased the survival time, when compared to that of mice injected (i.p) with the venom alone. These results encourage further studies on the potential use of cocktail of inhibitors in improving the treatment of snake envenomation. Further, this study substantiates the use of M. indica as an antidote against snakebite by the traditional healers.

  4. Distribution of arthropods in rice grains in Malaysia

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Mariana A; Ho TM; Lau TY; Heah SK; Wong AL

    2009-01-01

    Objective:To determine distribution of arthropods in rice grains obtained from different sources.Methods:Rice samples were randomly collected from public in urban areas,farmers in rice field areas,aborigines in un-developed areas and retailers in commercial premises.Random samples of rice were taken out from each sam-ple for isolation of arthropods using a modified Berlese Tullgren Funnel Method.Mites were mounted prior to i-dentification;weevils were directly identified.Results:Samples of rice from retailers in commercial premises had the highest infestation by arthropods followed by samples from urbanites,aborigines and rice farmers.Two species of weevils,Sitophilus oryzae(S.oryzae)and Sitophilus granarius(S.granarius),were found.Samples from commercial premises had the least percentage of weevils compared to those collected from domestic premi-ses.Depending on the source of samples,densities of S.granarius and S.oryzae ranges from 1 1 -1 03 weevils? kg and 7-80 weevils?kg,respectively.Important species of mites in stored rice identified were mainly members of the families Cheyletidae,Echimyopodidae,Pyroglyphidae,Saproglyphidae and Tenuipalpidae.Among the species of mites identified were Austroglycyphagus malaysiensis,Cheyletus fortis,Cheyletus malaccensis,Der-matophagoides pteronyssinus,Grammolichus malukuensis and Suidasia pontifica.Average density of most of the mites was less than 40 mites?kg of rice grains.In this study,the highest number of mites in rice samples was recovered from commercial premises,followed by samples from urbanites.Samples from farmers and aborigines contained lesser mites.Conclusion:This study demonstrated the presence of 3 allergenic mite species in rice, i.e A.malaysiensis,D.pteronyssinus and S.pontifica.Weevils,S.oryzae and S.granarius that are known to be allergenic,were also found.

  5. Waptia and the Diversification of Brood Care in Early Arthropods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caron, Jean-Bernard; Vannier, Jean

    2016-01-11

    Brood care, including the carrying of eggs or juveniles, is a form of parental care, which, like other parental traits [1], enhances offspring fitness with variable costs and benefits to the parents [2]. Attempts to understand why and how parental care evolved independently in numerous animal groups often emphasize the role of environmental pressures such as predation, ephemeral resources, and, more generally, the harshness of environment. The fossil record can, in principle, provide minimum age constraints on the evolution of life-history traits, including brood care and key information on the reproductive strategies of extinct organisms. New, exceptionally preserved specimens of the weakly sclerotized arthropod Waptia fieldensis from the middle Cambrian (ca. 508 million years ago) Burgess Shale, Canada, provide the oldest example of in situ eggs with preserved embryos in the fossil record. The relatively small clutch size, up to 24 eggs, and the relatively large diameter of individual eggs, some over 2 mm, contrast with the high number of small eggs-found without preserved embryos-in the bivalved bradoriid arthropod Kunmingella douvillei from the Chengjiang biota (ca. 515 million years ago). The presence of these two different parental strategies suggests a rapid evolution of a variety of modern-type life-history traits, including extended investment in offspring survivorship, soon after the Cambrian emergence of animals. Together with previously described brooded eggs in ostracods from the Upper Ordovician (ca. 450 million years ago), these new findings suggest that the presence of a bivalved carapace played a key role in the early evolution of parental care in arthropods.

  6. cuticleDB: a relational database of Arthropod cuticular proteins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Willis Judith H

    2004-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The insect exoskeleton or cuticle is a bi-partite composite of proteins and chitin that provides protective, skeletal and structural functions. Little information is available about the molecular structure of this important complex that exhibits a helicoidal architecture. Scores of sequences of cuticular proteins have been obtained from direct protein sequencing, from cDNAs, and from genomic analyses. Most of these cuticular protein sequences contain motifs found only in arthropod proteins. Description cuticleDB is a relational database containing all structural proteins of Arthropod cuticle identified to date. Many come from direct sequencing of proteins isolated from cuticle and from sequences from cDNAs that share common features with these authentic cuticular proteins. It also includes proteins from the Drosophila melanogaster and the Anopheles gambiae genomes, that have been predicted to be cuticular proteins, based on a Pfam motif (PF00379 responsible for chitin binding in Arthropod cuticle. The total number of the database entries is 445: 370 derive from insects, 60 from Crustacea and 15 from Chelicerata. The database can be accessed from our web server at http://bioinformatics.biol.uoa.gr/cuticleDB. Conclusions CuticleDB was primarily designed to contain correct and full annotation of cuticular protein data. The database will be of help to future genome annotators. Users will be able to test hypotheses for the existence of known and also of yet unknown motifs in cuticular proteins. An analysis of motifs may contribute to understanding how proteins contribute to the physical properties of cuticle as well as to the precise nature of their interaction with chitin.

  7. Ad-Hoc vs. Standardized and Optimized Arthropod Diversity Sampling

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    Pedro Cardoso

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available The use of standardized and optimized protocols has been recently advocated for different arthropod taxa instead of ad-hoc sampling or sampling with protocols defined on a case-by-case basis. We present a comparison of both sampling approaches applied for spiders in a natural area of Portugal. Tests were made to their efficiency, over-collection of common species, singletons proportions, species abundance distributions, average specimen size, average taxonomic distinctness and behavior of richness estimators. The standardized protocol revealed three main advantages: (1 higher efficiency; (2 more reliable estimations of true richness; and (3 meaningful comparisons between undersampled areas.

  8. Comparison of Caenorhabditis elegans NLP peptides with arthropod neuropeptides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Husson, Steven J; Lindemans, Marleen; Janssen, Tom; Schoofs, Liliane

    2009-04-01

    Neuropeptides are small messenger molecules that can be found in all metazoans, where they govern a diverse array of physiological processes. Because neuropeptides seem to be conserved among pest species, selected peptides can be considered as attractive targets for drug discovery. Much can be learned from the model system Caenorhabditis elegans because of the availability of a sequenced genome and state-of-the-art postgenomic technologies that enable characterization of endogenous peptides derived from neuropeptide-like protein (NLP) precursors. Here, we provide an overview of the NLP peptide family in C. elegans and discuss their resemblance with arthropod neuropeptides and their relevance for anthelmintic discovery.

  9. Technetium-99m labeling of tityustoxin and venom from the scorpion Tityus serrulatus

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nunan, E.A.; Cardoso, V.N.; Moraes-Santos, T. E-mail: tmoraes@dedalus.lcc.ufmg.br

    2002-12-01

    The tityustoxin, the most toxic fraction from scorpion Tityus serrulatus venom, has been used as a tool in several neurochemical and neuropharmacological studies. Biological activities of labeled and unlabeled tityustoxin and venom were compared. The samples were labeled in the presence of stannous chloride and sodium borohydride with a yield of 60-70% for the venom and 75-85% for tityustoxin and then chromatographed in Sephadex G-10. Biological activities of tityustoxin and venom were preserved after labeling.

  10. Partial purification of Chironex fleckeri (sea wasp) venom by immunochromatography with antivenom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calton, G J; Burnett, J W

    1986-01-01

    Chironex fleckeri crude venom was partially purified using immobilized commercially available ovoid antivenom. The antibody preparation reacted with lethal, hemolytic, dermonecrotic and mouse writhing (pain) factors in the crude venom. The lethal activity was purified five fold, while the specific eluate contained lower quantities of hemolytic, dermonecrotic and mouse writhing activities than did the crude venom.

  11. Intraspecific Variation of Centruroides Edwardsii Venom from Two Regions of Colombia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sebastián Estrada-Gómez

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available We report the first description studies, partial characterization, and intraspecific difference of Centruroides edwardsii, Gervais 1843, venom. C. edwardsii from two Colombian regions (Antioquia and Tolima were evaluated. Both venoms showed hemolytic activity, possibly dependent of enzymatic active phospholipases, and neither coagulant nor proteolytic activities were observed. Venom electrophoretic profile showed significant differences between C. edwardsii venom from both regions. A high concentration of proteins with molecular masses between 31 kDa and 97.4 kDa, and an important concentration close or below 14.4 kDa were detected. RP-HPLC retention times between 38.2 min and 42.1 min, showed bands close to 14.4 kDa, which may correspond to phospholipases. RP-HPLC venom profile showed a well conserved region in both venoms between 7 and 17 min, after this, significant differences were detected. From Tolima region venom, 50 well-defined peaks were detected, while in the Antioquia region venom, 55 well-defined peaks were detected. Larvicidal activity was only detected in the C. edwardsii venom from Antioquia. No antimicrobial activity was observed using complete venom or RP-HPLC collected fractions of both venoms. Lethally activity (carried out on female albino swiss mice was detected at doses over 19.2 mg/kg of crude venom. Toxic effects included distress, excitability, eye irritation and secretions, hyperventilation, ataxia, paralysis, and salivation.

  12. A palaeontological solution to the arthropod head problem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Budd, Graham E

    2002-05-16

    The composition of the arthropod head has been one of the most controversial topics in zoology, with a large number of theories being proposed to account for it over the last century. Although fossils have been recognized as being of potential importance in resolving the issue, a lack of consensus over their systematics has obscured their contribution. Here, I show that a group of previously problematic Cambrian arthropods from the Burgess Shale and Chengjiang faunas form a clade close to crown-group euarthropods, the group containing myriapods, chelicerates, insects and crustaceans. They are characterized by modified or even absent endopods, and two pre-oral appendages. Comparison with reconstructions of the crown-group euarthropod ground plan and recent investigations into onychophorans demonstrates that these two appendages are the first antenna (of extant crustaceans) and a more anterior appendage associated with an ocular segment. The latter appendage has been reduced in all crown-group euarthropods. Its most likely relic is as a component of the labrum. These fossils thus tie together results from disparate living groups (onychophorans and euarthropods).

  13. The importance of arthropod pests in Belgian pome fruit orchards.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bangels, Eva; De Schaetzen, Charles; Hayen, Guy; Paternotte, Edouard; Gobin, Bruno

    2008-01-01

    Located in temperate, maritime climate with frequent rainfall, crop protection in Belgian orchards is dominated by fungicides. Though, the importance of arthropod pests should not be underestimated. Pcfruit, the former Research station of Gorsem, has been maintaining a warning system for fruit pests in Belgium since 1944. Therefore, various pests and beneficial's and their life cycle stages have been monitored in Gorsem and in different observation posts across Belgium, being part of a monitoring network. Although up to 3000 arthropod species are present in pome fruit orchards, about 25% can be considered as harmful and another 25% as beneficial. Out of those species, around 100 harmful and 50 beneficial organisms are omnipresent. The list of monitored species is extended yearly for upcoming or difficult to control organisms. Integrated pest management was introduced in the eighties, with the accent on using selective pesticides and saving beneficial organisms. A shift in pesticide use affected the importance of secondary pests, together with recent exceptional climatic conditions. Following many years of monitoring insects and mites and editing warning bulletins in our station, a ranking of the economical importance of different pest species is presented.

  14. Effect of weed harrowing frequency on plants, beneficial arthropods and crop yield

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Navntoft, Søren; Kristensen, Kristian; Johnsen, Ib

    2016-01-01

    * Weed harrowing is an alternative to herbicides but it may have negative effects on epigaeic arthropods. We assessed the effects of frequent (four) versus two harrowings during the growing season on the density and diversity of generalist arthropods and the weed flora. Collection by flooding was...

  15. "Bugs on Bugs": An Inquiry-Based, Collaborative Activity to Learn Arthropod & Microbial Biodiversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lampert, Evan C.; Morgan, Jeanelle M.

    2015-01-01

    Diverse communities of arthropods and microbes provide humans with essential ecosystem goods and services. Arthropods are the most diverse and abundant macroscopic animals on the planet, and many remain to be discovered. Much less is known about microbial diversity, despite their importance as free-living species and as symbionts. We created…

  16. Arthropods associated with fungal galls: do large galls support more abundant and diverse inhabitants?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Funamoto, Daichi; Sugiura, Shinji

    2017-02-01

    Fungus-induced galls can attract spore-feeding arthropods as well as gall-feeding ones, resulting in diverse communities. Do large fungal galls support more abundant and diverse arthropod communities than small fungal galls? To address this question, we investigated the structure of the arthropod community associated with bud galls induced by the fungus Melanopsichium onumae on the tree species Cinnamomum yabunikkei (Lauraceae) in central Japan. Thirteen species of arthropods were associated with M. onumae galls. Dominant arthropod species were represented by the larvae of a salpingid beetle (a spore feeder), a nitidulid beetle (a spore feeder), a cosmopterigid moth (a spore feeder), an unidentified moth (a gall tissue feeder), and a drosophilid species (a gall tissue feeder). Arthropod abundance and species richness were positively correlated with gall diameter. The majority of the most abundant species were more frequently found in large galls than in small ones, indicating that large fungal galls, which have more food and/or space for arthropods, could support a more abundant and diverse arthropod community.

  17. Modification and application of a leaf blower-vac for field sampling of arthropods

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zou, Yi; Telgen, van Mario D.; Chen, Junhui; Xiao, Haijun; Kraker, de Joop; Bianchi, Felix J.J.A.; Werf, van der Wopke

    2016-01-01

    Rice fields host a large diversity of arthropods, but investigating their population dynamics and interactions is challenging. Here we describe the modification and application of a leaf blower-vac for suction sampling of arthropod populations in rice. When used in combination with an enclosure,

  18. Genetic variation in functional traits influences arthropod community composition in aspen (Populus tremula L.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, Kathryn M; Ingvarsson, Pär K; Jansson, Stefan; Albrectsen, Benedicte R

    2012-01-01

    We conducted a study of natural variation in functional leaf traits and herbivory in 116 clones of European aspen, Populus tremula L., the Swedish Aspen (SwAsp) collection, originating from ten degrees of latitude across Sweden and grown in a common garden. In surveys of phytophagous arthropods over two years, we found the aspen canopy supports nearly 100 morphospecies. We identified significant broad-sense heritability of plant functional traits, basic plant defence chemistry, and arthropod community traits. The majority of arthropods were specialists, those coevolved with P. tremula to tolerate and even utilize leaf defence compounds. Arthropod abundance and richness were more closely related to plant growth rates than general chemical defences and relationships were identified between the arthropod community and stem growth, leaf and petiole morphology, anthocyanins, and condensed tannins. Heritable genetic variation in plant traits in young aspen was found to structure arthropod community; however no single trait drives the preferences of arthropod folivores among young aspen genotypes. The influence of natural variation in plant traits on the arthropod community indicates the importance of maintaining genetic variation in wild trees as keystone species for biodiversity. It further suggests that aspen can be a resource for the study of mechanisms of natural resistance to herbivores.

  19. Composition and Diversity of Soil Arthropods of Rajegwesi Meru Betiri National Park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hasan Zayadi

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Meru Betiri National Park (MBNP is one of the nature conservation area that has the potential of flora, fauna, and ecosystems that could develop as a nature-based tourism attraction. The existence of certain indicator species was related to estimation of stress level and disturbance on ecosystem stability for making strategic decisions about the restoration in this area. One of the important indicator species at forest ecosystem were soil arthropods. Aim this research were analyzed composition and diversity of soil arthropods at Rajegwesi, MBNP areas. The methods in this research used pitfall trap, measurement of distribution structure and soil arthropods composition based on the Shannon - Wiener index, Morisita similarity index and Importance Value Index (IVI. The number of families and individuals of soil arthropods found in the coastal area of Rajegwesi consists of 10 order with 21 families (702 individual. The number of individuals of the order Hymenoptera, Coleoptera, Collembola and Araneida was more widely found. Soil arthropods diversity index on each land use indicated that soil arthropod diversity in these areas were moderate. Soil arthropod community of orchards and forest had a similarity of species composition, whereas soil arthropod community of savanna had a similarity of species composition with paddy fields.

  20. Genetic variation in functional traits influences arthropod community composition in aspen (Populus tremula L..

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kathryn M Robinson

    Full Text Available We conducted a study of natural variation in functional leaf traits and herbivory in 116 clones of European aspen, Populus tremula L., the Swedish Aspen (SwAsp collection, originating from ten degrees of latitude across Sweden and grown in a common garden. In surveys of phytophagous arthropods over two years, we found the aspen canopy supports nearly 100 morphospecies. We identified significant broad-sense heritability of plant functional traits, basic plant defence chemistry, and arthropod community traits. The majority of arthropods were specialists, those coevolved with P. tremula to tolerate and even utilize leaf defence compounds. Arthropod abundance and richness were more closely related to plant growth rates than general chemical defences and relationships were identified between the arthropod community and stem growth, leaf and petiole morphology, anthocyanins, and condensed tannins. Heritable genetic variation in plant traits in young aspen was found to structure arthropod community; however no single trait drives the preferences of arthropod folivores among young aspen genotypes. The influence of natural variation in plant traits on the arthropod community indicates the importance of maintaining genetic variation in wild trees as keystone species for biodiversity. It further suggests that aspen can be a resource for the study of mechanisms of natural resistance to herbivores.

  1. Arthropod succession on pig carcasses in southeastern Nigeria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.S. Ekanem

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available The domestic pig (Sus scrofa was used as a model to study arthropod succession on carcasses under tree shade and out of shade in southern Nigeria. Carcass decomposition took longer periods under tree shade than in exposed sites, at 24.5 and 16.5 days, respectively. Four decomposition stages - fresh, bloated, decay, and dry - were observed. No significant variabilities were recorded in the types and patterns of infestation of the carcasses by arthropods in both locations. Four classes of arthropods - Insecta, Arachnida, Diplopoda and Crustacea - were recorded. The class Insecta dominated the total arthropods collected with 24 families, and formed 94% of the catches. The other three classes each had one family represented, and contributed only 2% of the total catches. The calliphorids, a phorid, and sarcophagids arrived and bred on the carcasses only a few hours after death of the pigs. Families of coleopterans came during the bloated stage, and fed on the immature dipterous maggots and carrion materials. The ants (Hymenoptera came in large numbers to eat the carcasses, and also preyed on all other fauna of the food resource. A muscid and a stratiomyiid, bred on the carcass as to the decay stage. Other insects and arthropods arrived mostly during the decay stage to feed on the carcasses. Species richness on the carcasses peaked during the decay stage.O porco branco (Sus scrofa foi usado como modelo para o estudo da sucessão de Artrópodes em cadáveres em zonas sombreadas e não sombreadas por árvores no sul da Nigéria. Nos cadáveres em decomposição em zonas sombreadas observou-se um processo de decomposição mais lento que nos expostos ao sol; 24,5 e 16,5 dias, respectivamente. Foram observadas quatro etapas de decomposição; fresco (autólise, intumescido (putrefação, deteriorado e seco (diagênese. Não foram observadas diferenças significativas de tipo e padrão nas infestações dos cadáveres por Artrópodes em ambas as condi

  2. Introduction to the Arizona Sky Island Arthropod Project (ASAP): Systematics, Biogeography, Ecology, and Population Genetics of Arthropods of the Madrean Sky Islands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Wendy; Meyer, Wallace M; Eble, Jeffrey A; Franklin, Kimberly; Wiens, John F; Brusca, Richard C

    2013-01-01

    The Arizona Sky Island Arthropod Project (ASAP) is a new multi-disciplinary research program at the University of Arizona that combines systematics, biogeography, ecology, and population genetics to study origins and patterns of arthropod diversity along elevation gradients and among mountain ranges in the Madrean Sky Island Region. Arthropods represent taxonomically and ecologically diverse organisms that drive key ecosystem processes in this mountain archipelago. Using data from museum specimens and specimens we obtain during long-term collecting and monitoring programs, ASAP will document arthropod species across Arizona's Sky Islands to address a number of fundamental questions about arthropods of this region. Baseline data will be used to determine climatic boundaries for target species, which will then be integrated with climatological models to predict future changes in arthropod communities and distributions in the wake of rapid climate change. ASAP also makes use of the natural laboratory provided by the Sky Islands to investigate ecological and genetic factors that influence diversification and patterns of community assembly. Here, we introduce the project, outline overarching goals, and describe preliminary data from the first year of sampling ground-dwelling beetles and ants in the Santa Catalina Mountains.

  3. Phylogeny-based comparative analysis of venom proteome variation in a clade of rattlesnakes (Sistrurus sp..

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H Lisle Gibbs

    Full Text Available A long-standing question in evolutionary studies of snake venoms is the extent to which phylogenetic divergence and diet can account for between-species differences in venom composition. Here we apply phylogeny-based comparative methods to address this question. We use data on venom variation generated using proteomic techniques for all members of a small clade of rattlesnakes (Sistrurus sp. and two outgroups for which phylogenetic and diet information is available. We first complete the characterization of venom variation for all members of this clade with a "venomic" analysis of pooled venoms from two members of this genus, S. milarius streckeri and S. m. milarius. These venoms exhibit the same general classes of proteins as those found in other Sistrurus species but differ in their relative abundances of specific protein families. We then test whether there is significant phylogenetic signal in the relative abundances of major venom proteins across species and if diet (measured as percent mammals and lizards among all prey consumed covaries with venom composition after phylogenetic divergence is accounted for. We found no evidence for significant phylogenetic signal in venom variation: K values for seven snake venom proteins and two composite venom variables [PC 1 and 2] were all nonsignificant and lower (mean = 0.11+0.06 sd than mean K values (>0.35 previously reported for a wide range of morphological, life history, physiological and behavioral traits from other species. Finally, analyses based on Phylogenetic Generalized Least Squares (PGLS methods reveal that variation in abundance of some venom proteins, most strongly CRISP is significantly related to snake diet. Our results demonstrate that venom variation in these snakes is evolutionarily a highly labile trait even among very closely-related taxa and that natural selection acting through diet variation may play a role in molding the relative abundance of specific venom proteins.

  4. Facing Hymenoptera Venom Allergy: From Natural to Recombinant Allergens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amilcar Perez-Riverol

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Along with food and drug allergic reactions, a Hymenoptera insect Sting (Apoidea, Vespidae, Formicidae is one of the most common causes of anaphylaxis worldwide. Diagnoses of Hymenoptera venom allergy (HVA and specific immunotherapy (SIT have been based on the use of crude venom extracts. However, the incidence of cross-reactivity and low levels of sensibility during diagnosis, as well as the occurrence of nonspecific sensitization and undesired side effects during SIT, encourage the search for novel allergenic materials. Recombinant allergens are an interesting approach to improve allergy diagnosis and SIT because they circumvent major problems associated with the use of crude venom. Production of recombinant allergens depends on the profound molecular characterization of the natural counterpart by combining some “omics” approaches with high-throughput screening techniques and the selection of an appropriate system for heterologous expression. To date, several clinically relevant allergens and novel venom toxins have been identified, cloned and characterized, enabling a better understanding of the whole allergenic and envenoming processes. Here, we review recent findings on identification, molecular characterization and recombinant expression of Hymenoptera venom allergens and on the evaluation of these heterologous proteins as valuable tools for tackling remaining pitfalls on HVA diagnosis and immunotherapy.

  5. Exon Shuffling and Origin of Scorpion Venom Biodiversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xueli Wang

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Scorpion venom is a complex combinatorial library of peptides and proteins with multiple biological functions. A combination of transcriptomic and proteomic techniques has revealed its enormous molecular diversity, as identified by the presence of a large number of ion channel-targeted neurotoxins with different folds, membrane-active antimicrobial peptides, proteases, and protease inhibitors. Although the biodiversity of scorpion venom has long been known, how it arises remains unsolved. In this work, we analyzed the exon-intron structures of an array of scorpion venom protein-encoding genes and unexpectedly found that nearly all of these genes possess a phase-1 intron (one intron located between the first and second nucleotides of a codon near the cleavage site of a signal sequence despite their mature peptides remarkably differ. This observation matches a theory of exon shuffling in the origin of new genes and suggests that recruitment of different folds into scorpion venom might be achieved via shuffling between body protein-coding genes and ancestral venom gland-specific genes that presumably contributed tissue-specific regulatory elements and secretory signal sequences.

  6. Facing Hymenoptera Venom Allergy: From Natural to Recombinant Allergens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perez-Riverol, Amilcar; Justo-Jacomini, Débora Lais; Zollner, Ricardo de Lima; Brochetto-Braga, Márcia Regina

    2015-07-09

    Along with food and drug allergic reactions, a Hymenoptera insect Sting (Apoidea, Vespidae, Formicidae) is one of the most common causes of anaphylaxis worldwide. Diagnoses of Hymenoptera venom allergy (HVA) and specific immunotherapy (SIT) have been based on the use of crude venom extracts. However, the incidence of cross-reactivity and low levels of sensibility during diagnosis, as well as the occurrence of nonspecific sensitization and undesired side effects during SIT, encourage the search for novel allergenic materials. Recombinant allergens are an interesting approach to improve allergy diagnosis and SIT because they circumvent major problems associated with the use of crude venom. Production of recombinant allergens depends on the profound molecular characterization of the natural counterpart by combining some "omics" approaches with high-throughput screening techniques and the selection of an appropriate system for heterologous expression. To date, several clinically relevant allergens and novel venom toxins have been identified, cloned and characterized, enabling a better understanding of the whole allergenic and envenoming processes. Here, we review recent findings on identification, molecular characterization and recombinant expression of Hymenoptera venom allergens and on the evaluation of these heterologous proteins as valuable tools for tackling remaining pitfalls on HVA diagnosis and immunotherapy.

  7. Mechanisms of virus resistance and antiviral activity of snake venoms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    JVR Rivero

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Viruses depend on cell metabolism for their own propagation. The need to foster an intimate relationship with the host has resulted in the development of various strategies designed to help virus escape from the defense mechanisms present in the host. Over millions of years, the unremitting battle between pathogens and their hosts has led to changes in evolution of the immune system. Snake venoms are biological resources that have antiviral activity, hence substances of significant pharmacological value. The biodiversity in Brazil with respect to snakes is one of the richest on the planet; nevertheless, studies on the antiviral activity of venom from Brazilian snakes are scarce. The antiviral properties of snake venom appear as new promising therapeutic alternative against the defense mechanisms developed by viruses. In the current study, scientific papers published in recent years on the antiviral activity of venom from various species of snakes were reviewed. The objective of this review is to discuss the mechanisms of resistance developed by viruses and the components of snake venoms that present antiviral activity, particularly, enzymes, amino acids, peptides and proteins.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  9. Characterization of Fibrinolytic Proteases from Gloydius blomhoffii siniticus Venom

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    Suk Ho Choi

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Objectives : This study was undertaken to identify fibrinolytic proteases from Gloydius blomhoffii siniticus venom and to characterize a major fibrinolytic protease purified from the venom. Methods: The venom was subjected to chromatography using columns of Q-Sepharose and Sephadex G-75. The molecular weights of fibrinolytic proteases showing fibrinolytic zone in fibrin plate assay were determined in SDS-PAGE (Sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis The effects of inhibitors and metal ions on fibrinolytic protease and the proteolysis patterns of fibrinogen, gelatin, and bovine serum albumin were investigated. Results : 1 The fibrinolytic fractions of the three peaks isolated from Gloydius blomhoffii siniticus venom contained two polypeptides of 46 and 59 kDa and three polypeptides of 32, 18, and 15 kDa and a major polypeptide of 54 kDa, respectively. 2 The fibrinolytic activity of the purified protease of 54 kDA was inhibited by metal chelators, such as EDTA, EGTA, and 1,10-phenanthroline, and disulfhydryl-reducing compounds, such as dithiothreitol and cysteine. 3 Calcium chloride promoted the fibrinolytic activity of the protease, but mercuric chloride and cobalt(II chloride inhibited it. 4 The fibrinolytic protease cleaved preferentially A-chain and slowly B-chain of fibrinogen. It also hydrolyzed gelatin but not bovine serum albumin. Conclusions: The Gloydius blomhoffii siniticus venom contained more than three fibrinolytic proteases. The major fibrinolytic protease was a metalloprotease which hydrolyzed both fibrinogen and gelatin, but not bovine serum albumin.

  10. Arthropod Distribution in a Tropical Rainforest: Tackling a Four Dimensional Puzzle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basset, Yves; Cizek, Lukas; Cuénoud, Philippe; Didham, Raphael K.; Novotny, Vojtech; Ødegaard, Frode; Roslin, Tomas; Tishechkin, Alexey K.; Schmidl, Jürgen; Winchester, Neville N.; Roubik, David W.; Aberlenc, Henri-Pierre; Bail, Johannes; Barrios, Héctor; Bridle, Jonathan R.; Castaño-Meneses, Gabriela; Corbara, Bruno; Curletti, Gianfranco; Duarte da Rocha, Wesley; De Bakker, Domir; Delabie, Jacques H. C.; Dejean, Alain; Fagan, Laura L.; Floren, Andreas; Kitching, Roger L.; Medianero, Enrique; Gama de Oliveira, Evandro; Orivel, Jérôme; Pollet, Marc; Rapp, Mathieu; Ribeiro, Sérvio P.; Roisin, Yves; Schmidt, Jesper B.; Sørensen, Line; Lewinsohn, Thomas M.; Leponce, Maurice

    2015-01-01

    Quantifying the spatio-temporal distribution of arthropods in tropical rainforests represents a first step towards scrutinizing the global distribution of biodiversity on Earth. To date most studies have focused on narrow taxonomic groups or lack a design that allows partitioning of the components of diversity. Here, we consider an exceptionally large dataset (113,952 individuals representing 5,858 species), obtained from the San Lorenzo forest in Panama, where the phylogenetic breadth of arthropod taxa was surveyed using 14 protocols targeting the soil, litter, understory, lower and upper canopy habitats, replicated across seasons in 2003 and 2004. This dataset is used to explore the relative influence of horizontal, vertical and seasonal drivers of arthropod distribution in this forest. We considered arthropod abundance, observed and estimated species richness, additive decomposition of species richness, multiplicative partitioning of species diversity, variation in species composition, species turnover and guild structure as components of diversity. At the scale of our study (2km of distance, 40m in height and 400 days), the effects related to the vertical and seasonal dimensions were most important. Most adult arthropods were collected from the soil/litter or the upper canopy and species richness was highest in the canopy. We compared the distribution of arthropods and trees within our study system. Effects related to the seasonal dimension were stronger for arthropods than for trees. We conclude that: (1) models of beta diversity developed for tropical trees are unlikely to be applicable to tropical arthropods; (2) it is imperative that estimates of global biodiversity derived from mass collecting of arthropods in tropical rainforests embrace the strong vertical and seasonal partitioning observed here; and (3) given the high species turnover observed between seasons, global climate change may have severe consequences for rainforest arthropods. PMID:26633187

  11. Arthropod Distribution in a Tropical Rainforest: Tackling a Four Dimensional Puzzle.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yves Basset

    Full Text Available Quantifying the spatio-temporal distribution of arthropods in tropical rainforests represents a first step towards scrutinizing the global distribution of biodiversity on Earth. To date most studies have focused on narrow taxonomic groups or lack a design that allows partitioning of the components of diversity. Here, we consider an exceptionally large dataset (113,952 individuals representing 5,858 species, obtained from the San Lorenzo forest in Panama, where the phylogenetic breadth of arthropod taxa was surveyed using 14 protocols targeting the soil, litter, understory, lower and upper canopy habitats, replicated across seasons in 2003 and 2004. This dataset is used to explore the relative influence of horizontal, vertical and seasonal drivers of arthropod distribution in this forest. We considered arthropod abundance, observed and estimated species richness, additive decomposition of species richness, multiplicative partitioning of species diversity, variation in species composition, species turnover and guild structure as components of diversity. At the scale of our study (2 km of distance, 40 m in height and 400 days, the effects related to the vertical and seasonal dimensions were most important. Most adult arthropods were collected from the soil/litter or the upper canopy and species richness was highest in the canopy. We compared the distribution of arthropods and trees within our study system. Effects related to the seasonal dimension were stronger for arthropods than for trees. We conclude that: (1 models of beta diversity developed for tropical trees are unlikely to be applicable to tropical arthropods; (2 it is imperative that estimates of global biodiversity derived from mass collecting of arthropods in tropical rainforests embrace the strong vertical and seasonal partitioning observed here; and (3 given the high species turnover observed between seasons, global climate change may have severe consequences for rainforest arthropods.

  12. Hemolytic activity of venom from crown-of-thorns starfish Acanthaster planci spines

    OpenAIRE

    Lee, Chi-Chiu; Tsai, Wann-Sheng; Hsieh, Hernyi Justin; Hwang, Deng-Fwu

    2013-01-01

    Background The crown-of-thorns starfish Acanthaster planci is a venomous species from Taiwan whose venom provokes strong hemolytic activity. To understand the hemolytic properties of A. planci venom, samples were collected from A. planci spines in the Penghu Islands, dialyzed with distilled water, and lyophilized into A. planci spine venom (ASV) powder. Results Both crude venom and ASV cause 50% hemolysis at a concentration of 20 μg/mL. The highest hemolytic activity of ASV was measured at pH...

  13. Mechanisms controlling venom expulsion in the western diamondback rattlesnake, Crotalus atrox.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Bruce A; Kardong, Kenneth V

    2007-01-01

    Although many studies have documented variation in the amount of venom expended during bites of venomous snakes, the mechanistic source of this variation remains uncertain. This study used experimental techniques to examine how two different features of the venom delivery system, the muscle surrounding the venom gland (the Compressor Glandulae in the rattlesnake) and the fang sheath, could influence venom flow in the western diamondback rattlesnake, Crotalus atrox. Differential contraction of the Compressor Glandulae explained only approximately 30% of the variation in venom flow. Lifting (compression) of the fang sheath as occurs during a normal strike produced marked increases in venom flow; these changes were closely correlated and exceed in magnitude by almost 10 x those recorded from the Compressor Glandulae alone. These results suggest that variation in these two aspects of the venom delivery system--both in terms of magnitude and temporal patterning--explain most of the observed variation in venom injection. The lack of functional or mechanical links between the Compressor Glandulae and the fang sheath, and the lack of skeletal or smooth muscle within the fang sheath, make it unlikely that variation in venom flow is under direct neural control. Instead, differential venom injection results from differences in the pressurization by the Compressor Glandulae, the gate keeping effects of the fang sheath and enclosed soft-tissue chambers, and by differences in the pressure returned by peripheral resistance of the target tissue.

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

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    Miriéle Cristina Ferraz

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  16. Analysis of Protein Composition and Bioactivity of Neoponera villosa Venom (Hymenoptera: Formicidae

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    Wallace Felipe Blohem Pessoa

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available 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.

  17. The in vitro vascular effects of two chirodropid (Chironex fleckeri and Chiropsella bronzie) venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winter, Kelly L; Fernando, Ross; Ramasamy, Sharmaine; Seymour, Jamie E; Isbister, Geoffrey K; Hodgson, Wayne C

    2007-01-10

    Clinical observations suggest a primary cardiotoxic role in fatal Chironex fleckeri stings. The limited research available indicates that Chiropsella bronzie venom acts in a similar manner although appears to be less potent. The aim of the present study was to elucidate the vascular effects of C. fleckeri and C. bronzie venoms using rat isolated aorta. Both venoms produced a sustained contraction of endothelium-denuded aorta which was not significantly affected by prazosin or box jellyfish antivenom. Felodipine significantly reduced the contractile response to C. fleckeri venom but not C. bronzie venom. Both venoms produced an initial relaxation (Phase 1), followed by a sustained contraction (Phase 2), in pre-contracted endothelium-intact aorta. Removal of the endothelium significantly inhibited both phases of the response. NOLA significantly inhibited Phase 1, but not Phase 2, of the response to both venoms. Atropine, HOE 140 or BQ 123 did not have any significant inhibitory effect on either phase. In conclusion, neither C. fleckeri nor C. bronzie venoms appear to contain components with activity at alpha(1)-adrenoceptors. Antivenom was ineffective in reversing the effects of the venom suggesting it is incapable of completely neutralising nematocyst-derived venom. Determining the mechanism of action of these venoms will allow for the development of better treatment strategies.

  18. Antigenic Cross-Reactivity Anti-Birtoxin Antibody against Androctonus crassicauda Venom

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    SuhandanAdigüzel Van-Zoelen

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Background: Antivenom is still widely used in the treatment of envenomation as there are no vaccines or other effective agents available against animal venoms. Recently, neurotoxins named birtoxin family have been described from Parabuthus transvaalicus and Androctonus crassicauda. The aim of the present study was to test the antibirtoxinantibodies for their ability to neutralize the lethal effects of A. crassicauda scorpion venom.Methods: SDS-PAGE and Western blotting used the presence of components from A. crassicauda and P.transvaalicus scorpion venoms and to determine the degree of cross-reactivity. The Minimum Lethal Dose (MLD of venom was assessed by subcutaneously (sc injections in mice.Results: The MLD of the A. crassicauda venom was 35 μg/ 20g mouse by sc injection route. Western blotting showed the presence of components from A. crassicauda and P. transvaalicus scorpion venoms strongly cross react with the A. crassicauda antivenom. However, Western blotting of the A. crassicauda scorpion venom using the Refik Saydam Public Health Agency (RSPHA generated antibody showed that not all the venom components cross reacted with the anti-birtoxin antibody. The antibodies only cross reacted with components falling under the 19 kDa protein size of A. crassicauda venom.Conclusion: The bioassays and Western blotting of A. crassicauda venom with the anti-birtoxin antibodies produced against a synthetic peptide showed that these antibodies cross reacted but did not neutralize the venom of A. crassicauda.

  19. Intersexual variations in Northern (Missulena pruinosa) and Eastern (M. bradleyi) mouse spider venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herzig, Volker; Khalife, Ali A; Chong, Youmie; Isbister, Geoffrey K; Currie, Bart J; Churchill, Tracey B; Horner, Suzanne; Escoubas, Pierre; Nicholson, Graham M; Hodgson, Wayne C

    2008-06-01

    Venoms of both sexes of Australian Northern (Missulena pruinosa) and Eastern (Missulena bradleyi) mouse spiders were studied in order to determine intersexual variations in venom yield, composition and bioactivity. Females of both species yielded more venom than males. High-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and mass spectrometry data further indicate a substantial degree of intersexual variation in the venom composition of both species. In a cricket (Acheta domestica) acute toxicity assay, only small intersexual differences were observed, but M. bradleyi venom was found to be considerably more potent than M. pruinosa venom. In the chick biventer cervicis nerve-muscle preparation, male but not female M. bradleyi venom induced large and sustained muscle contractions with fasciculation and decreased twitch height that could be reversed by CSL funnel-web spider antivenom. In contrast, venoms of both sexes of M. pruinosa did not induce significant effects in the chick biventer cervicis nerve-muscle preparation. We therefore conclude that female M. bradleyi venom and venoms from male and female M. pruinosa appear to contain few, if any, orthologs of delta-missulenatoxin-Mb1a, the toxin responsible for the effects of male M. bradleyi venom in vertebrates. These findings are consistent with clinical reports that mouse spiders, particularly species other than male M. bradleyi, do not appear to be a major medical problem in humans.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  1. Improved sensitivity to venom specific-immunoglobulin E by spiking with the allergen component in Japanese patients suspected of Hymenoptera venom allergy

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    Naruo Yoshida

    2015-07-01

    Conclusions: The measurement of sIgE following spiking of rVes v 5 and rPol d 5 by conventional testing in Japanese subjects with sIgE against hornet and paper wasp venom, respectively, improved the sensitivity for detecting Hymenoptera venom allergy. Improvement testing for measuring sIgE levels against hornet and paper wasp venom has potential for serologically elucidating Hymenoptera allergy in Japan.

  2. [Influence of electromagnetic radiation on toxicity of Vipera lebetina obtusa venom].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abiev, G A; Babaev, E I; Topchieva, Sh A; Chumburidze, T B; Nemsitsveridze, N G

    2009-11-01

    The aim of the article was to study the effect of electromagnetic radiation on toxicity of Vipera lebetina obtusa venom. It was found that mice intoxicated with snake venom, with moderate to high exposure to electromagnetic radiation and mice intoxicated with venom, which had not been exposed to the radiation showed the same symptoms of intoxication and death. At the same time, the longevity of mice intoxicated with venom exposed to electromagnetic radiation was higher. The longevity of mice in control group was 25+/-5 min. The longevity of mice intoxicated with exposed to electromagnetic radiation snake venom was from 29 to 60 min. The research showed that the longevity of mice intoxicated with snake venom rose with the level of electromagnetic radiation intensity the snake was exposed to. Accordingly, snake venom, with exposure to high intensity electromagnetic radiation is less toxic.

  3. Analysis of intraspecific variation in venoms of Acanthophis antarcticus death adders from South Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herzig, Volker; Kohler, Maxie; Grund, Kai F; Reeve, Shane; Smith, A Ian; Hodgson, Wayne C

    2013-01-01

    Intraspecific variation in venom composition and activity has been reported from a wide range of snakes. Geographical origin can be one cause for this variation and has recently been documented from Acanthophis antarcticus death adders sampled across four different Australian states. The present study examined whether a narrower sampling range of A. antarcticus from four collection sites within one Australian state (i.e., South Australia) would also exhibit variation in venom composition and/or activity. The present LC-MS results reveal marked differences in the venom composition from different collection sites. The most striking difference was the reduced venom complexity found in the only venom originating from a mallee scrub habitat in comparison to the venoms from coastal heath scrub habitats. Interestingly, the pharmacological activity of all venoms was found to be the same, independent of the collection site.

  4. A rapid and repeatable method for venom extraction from cubozoan nematocysts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrette, T; Seymour, J

    2004-08-01

    Various comparative studies into the biological activity and relative toxicity of cubozoan venoms have been investigated, in particular the venom from the potentially lethal cubozoan Chironex fleckeri. Efficient and reliable extraction of venom from nematocysts is essential before any research into venom toxicity can be conducted and previous cited methods of extraction have varied greatly, each with their own associated problems. A new standardised technique for the recovery of venom from nematocysts of cubozoans is investigated to decrease the variation displayed between authors due to differing extraction techniques. The use of a mini bead mill beater, as investigated in this trial, allows for the rapid extraction of venom from nematocysts and is devoid of the previously isolated problems experienced with other methods of venom isolation, such as excessive heat build up.

  5. Evaluation of antivenoms in the neutralization of hyperalgesia and edema induced by Bothrops jararaca and Bothrops asper snake venoms

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    Picolo G.

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available Neutralization of hyperalgesia induced by Bothrops jararaca and B. asper venoms was studied in rats using bothropic antivenom produced at Instituto Butantan (AVIB, 1 ml neutralizes 5 mg B. jararaca venom and polyvalent antivenom produced at Instituto Clodomiro Picado (AVCP, 1 ml neutralizes 2.5 mg B. aspar venom. The intraplantar injection of B. jararaca and B. asper venoms caused hyperalgesia, which peaked 1 and 2 h after injection, respectively. Both venoms also induced edema with a similar time course. When neutralization assays involving the independent injection of venom and antivenom were performed, the hyperalgesia induced by B. jararaca venom was neutralized only when bothropic antivenom was administered iv 15 min before venom injection, whereas edema was neutralized when antivenom was injected 15 min or immediately before venom injection. On the other hand, polyvalent antivenom did not interfere with hyperalgesia or edema induced by B. asper venom, even when administered prior to envenomation. The lack of neutralization of hyperalgesia and edema induced by B. asper venom is not attributable to the absence of neutralizing antibodies in the antivenom, since neutralization was achieved in assays involving preincubation of venom and antivenom. Cross-neutralization of AVCP or AVIB against B. jararaca and B. asper venoms, respectively, was also evaluated. Only bothropic antivenom partially neutralized hyperalgesia induced by B. asper venom in preincubation experiments. The present data suggest that hyperalgesia and edema induced by Bothrops venoms are poorly neutralized by commercial antivenoms even when antibodies are administered immediately after envenomation.

  6. Spinal processing of bee venom-induced pain and hyperalgesia

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jun CHEN

    2008-01-01

    Subcutaneous injection of bee venom causes long-term neural activation and hypersensitization in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord, which contributes to the development and maintenance of various pain-related behaviors. The unique behavioral 'pheno-types' of nociception and hypersensitivity identified in the rodent bee venom test are believed to reflect a complex pathological state of inflammatory pain and might be appropriate to the study of phenotype-based mechanisms of pain and hyperalgesia. In this review, the spinal processing of the bee venom-induced different 'phenotypes' of pain and hyperalgesia will be described. The accumulative electrophysiological, pharmacological, and behavioral data strongly suggest that different 'phenotypes' of pain and hyperalgesia are mediated by different spinal signaling pathways. Unraveling the phenotype-based mechanisms of pain might be useful in development of novel therapeutic drugs against complex clinic pathological pain.

  7. Venomous snakebite in mountainous terrain: prevention and management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyd, Jeff J; Agazzi, Giancelso; Svajda, Dario; Morgan, Arthur J; Ferrandis, Silvia; Norris, Robert L

    2007-01-01

    The prevention and management of venomous snakebite in the world's mountains present unique challenges. This paper presents a series of practical, clinically sound recommendations for management of venomous snakebite in a mountain environment. The authors performed an extensive review of current literature using search engines and manual searches. They then fused the abundant knowledge of snakebite with the realities of remote first aid and mountain rescue to develop recommendations. A summary is provided of the world's most troublesome mountain snakes and the mechanisms of toxicity from their bites. Preventive measures are described. Expected symptoms and signs are reviewed in lay and medical terms. A review of currently recommended first-aid measures and advanced medical management for physicians, paramedics, and other clinicians is included. Venomous snakebites in mountainous environments present unique challenges for management. This paper offers practical recommendations for managing such cases and summarizes the approach to first aid and advanced management in 2 algorithms.

  8. A Novel Neurotoxin from Venom of the Spider, Brachypelma albopilosum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Mingwei; Li, Hongli; Wang, Ping; Yuan, Minglong; Lu, Qiumin

    2014-01-01

    Spiders have evolved highly selective toxins for insects. There are many insecticidal neurotoxins in spider venoms. Although a large amount of work has been done to focus on neurotoxicity of spider components, little information, which is related with effects of spider toxins on tumor cell proliferation and cytotoxicity, is available for Brachypelma albopilosum venom. In this work, a novel spider neurotoxin (brachyin) was identified and characterized from venoms of the spider, Brachypelma albopilosum. Brachyin is composed of 41 amino acid residues with the sequence of CLGENVPCDKDRPNCCSRYECLEPTGYGWWYASYYCYKKRS. There are six cysteines in this sequence, which form three disulfided bridges. The serine residue at the C-terminus is amidated. Brachyin showed strong lethal effects on American cockroaches (Periplaneta americana) and Tenebrio molitor (common mealbeetle). This neurotoxin also showed significant analgesic effects in mice models including abdominal writhing induced by acetic acid and formalin-induced paw licking tests. It was interesting that brachyin exerted marked inhibition on tumor cell proliferation. PMID:25329070

  9. A novel neurotoxin from venom of the spider, Brachypelma albopilosum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhong, Yunhua; Song, Bo; Mo, Guoxiang; Yuan, Mingwei; Li, Hongli; Wang, Ping; Yuan, Minglong; Lu, Qiumin

    2014-01-01

    Spiders have evolved highly selective toxins for insects. There are many insecticidal neurotoxins in spider venoms. Although a large amount of work has been done to focus on neurotoxicity of spider components, little information, which is related with effects of spider toxins on tumor cell proliferation and cytotoxicity, is available for Brachypelma albopilosum venom. In this work, a novel spider neurotoxin (brachyin) was identified and characterized from venoms of the spider, Brachypelma albopilosum. Brachyin is composed of 41 amino acid residues with the sequence of CLGENVPCDKDRPNCCSRYECLEPTGYGWWYASYYCYKKRS. There are six cysteines in this sequence, which form three disulfided bridges. The serine residue at the C-terminus is amidated. Brachyin showed strong lethal effects on American cockroaches (Periplaneta americana) and Tenebrio molitor (common mealbeetle). This neurotoxin also showed significant analgesic effects in mice models including abdominal writhing induced by acetic acid and formalin-induced paw licking tests. It was interesting that brachyin exerted marked inhibition on tumor cell proliferation.

  10. The composition, biochemical properties and toxicity of snake venoms

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    Ireneusz Całkosiński

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available 2.5 million cases of snake bites are noticed in the world every year (within 100,000 is mortal. These bites occur frequently in Asia and Africa. Some reports proved the toxicity and composition changes of well-known venoms from the same snake species according to the climatic zone. Snake venom is a natural source of many biologically active substances, including those with potential therapeutic properties. These substances contain peptides, proteins, and enzymes which are divided into five subfamilies: three-finger toxins, serine protease inhibitors of the Kunitz type, phospholipases A2, serine proteases, and metalloproteases. All snake venoms are grouped depending on their mode of action. They usually cause neurotransmission disorders, cardiotoxic action, hemostasis disorders, and have central nervous system and necrotic activity.

  11. A novel neurotoxin from venom of the spider, Brachypelma albopilosum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yunhua Zhong

    Full Text Available Spiders have evolved highly selective toxins for insects. There are many insecticidal neurotoxins in spider venoms. Although a large amount of work has been done to focus on neurotoxicity of spider components, little information, which is related with effects of spider toxins on tumor cell proliferation and cytotoxicity, is available for Brachypelma albopilosum venom. In this work, a novel spider neurotoxin (brachyin was identified and characterized from venoms of the spider, Brachypelma albopilosum. Brachyin is composed of 41 amino acid residues with the sequence of CLGENVPCDKDRPNCCSRYECLEPTGYGWWYASYYCYKKRS. There are six cysteines in this sequence, which form three disulfided bridges. The serine residue at the C-terminus is amidated. Brachyin showed strong lethal effects on American cockroaches (Periplaneta americana and Tenebrio molitor (common mealbeetle. This neurotoxin also showed significant analgesic effects in mice models including abdominal writhing induced by acetic acid and formalin-induced paw licking tests. It was interesting that brachyin exerted marked inhibition on tumor cell proliferation.

  12. Purification and characterization of five snake venom metalloproteinases from Egyptian Echis pyramidum pyramidum venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdel-Aty, Azza M; Wahby, Ahmed F

    2014-08-01

    New five P-III snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs): EpyB2 (62 kDa), EpyB3 (62+23 kDa), EpyB4 (60 kDa), EpyB5 (67 kDa) and EpyB6 (66 kDa) of the most dangerous viper, Echis pyramidum pyramidum (Epy), were purified and characterized in a set of biochemical assays. The SVMPs were purified by applying a protocol of two successive chromatographic steps. Three purified SVMPs "EpyB2, EpyB4, and EpyB5" have hemorrhagic activity with MHDs, 7 μg, 7.6 μg and 15 μg, respectively; furthermore, they have high preference towards fibronectin, collagen, gelatin, fibrin and hemoglobin substrates compared with non-hemorrhagic SVMPs (EpyB3 and EpyB6). All the purified SVMPs showed remarkable thermal and pH stability, inhibited by metalloproteinase inhibitors and Zn(2+), Mn(2+), Ni(2+), Co(2+), Cu(2+), and Hg(2+). The purified SVMPs act as α-fibrinogenases, prothrombin activators and procoagulants. In conclusion, Epy venom has multiple SVMPs that are responsible for hemorrhagic events and thus represent a significant health hazard for victims of envenomation, however, they may be useful for treating diseases involving abnormal blood clot formation.

  13. Venomic study on cone snails (Conus spp.) from South Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kauferstein, Silke; Porth, Christine; Kendel, Yvonne; Wunder, Cora; Nicke, Annette; Kordis, Dusan; Favreau, Philippe; Koua, Dominique; Stöcklin, Reto; Mebs, Dietrich

    2011-01-01

    From six Conus species (Conus coronatus, Conus lividus, Conus mozambicus f. lautus, Conus pictus, Conus sazanka, Conus tinianus) collected off the eastern coast of South Africa the venoms were analyzed using MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. Between 56 and 151 molecular masses most in a range of 1000 to 2500 Da, were identified. Among the six venoms, between 0 and 27% (C. coronatus versus C. sazanka) of the peptide masses were found to be similar. In a study on venoms from 6 Conus species collected in the Philippines, the percentage of identical masses was between none and 9% only. The venoms from the South African Conus species antagonized the rat neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) α3β2, α4β2, and α7, except for C. coronatus venom that blocked the α4β2 and α7 nAChRs only. HPLC-fractionation of C. tinianus venom led to the isolation of a peptide that is active on all three receptor subtypes. It consists of 16 amino acid residues cross-linked by two disulfide bridges as revealed by de novo sequencing using tandem mass spectrometry: GGCCSHPACQNNPDYC. Posttranslational modifications include C-terminal amidation and tyrosine sulfation. The new peptide is a member of the α-conotoxin family that are competitive antagonists of nAChRs. Phylogenetic analysis of the 16S RNA from numerous Conus species has clarified the evolutionary position of endemic South African Conus species and provided the first evidence for their close genetic relationships.

  14. Interisland evolution of Trimeresurus flavoviridis venom phospholipase A(2) isozymes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chijiwa, Takahito; Yamaguchi, Yoko; Ogawa, Tomohisa; Deshimaru, Masanobu; Nobuhisa, Ikuo; Nakashima, Kinichi; Oda-Ueda, Naoko; Fukumaki, Yasuyuki; Hattori, Shosaku; Ohno, Motonori

    2003-03-01

    Trimeresurus flavoviridis snakes inhabit the southwestern islands of Japan. A phospholipase A(2) (PLA(2)), named PL-Y, was isolated from Okinawa T. flavoviridis venom and its amino acid sequence was determined from both protein and cDNA. PL-Y was unable to induce edema. In contrast, PLA-B, a PLA(2) from Tokunoshima T. flavoviridis venom, which is different at only three positions from PL-Y, is known to induce edema. A new PLA(2), named PLA-B', which is similar to PLA-B, was cloned from Amami-Oshima T. flavoviridis venom gland. Three T. flavoviridis venom basic [Asp(49)]PLA(2) isozymes, PL-Y (Okinawa), PLA-B (Tokunoshima), and PLA-B' (Amami-Oshima), are identical in the N-terminal half but have one to four amino acid substitutions in the beta1-sheet and its vicinity. Such interisland sequence diversities among them are due to isolation in the different environments over 1 to 2 million years and appear to have been brought about by natural selection for point mutation in their genes. Otherwise, a major PLA(2), named PLA2, ubiquitously exists in the venoms of T. flavoviridis snakes from the three islands with one to three synonymous substitutions in their cDNAs. It is assumed that the PLA2 gene is a prototype among T. flavoviridis venom PLA(2) isozyme genes and has hardly undergone nonsynonymous mutation as a principal toxic component. Phylogenetic analysis based on the amino acid sequences revealed that T. flavoviridis PLA(2) isozymes are clearly separated into three groups, PLA2 type, basic [Asp(49)]PLA(2) type, and [Lys(49)]PLA(2) type. Basic [Asp(49)]PLA(2)-type isozymes may manifest their own particular toxic functions different from those of the isozymes of the PLA2 type and [Lys(49)]PLA(2) type.

  15. Bacteria, fungi and arthropod pests collected on modern human mummies

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    F. Palla

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available A survey of opportunistic biocenosis (macro and micro organisms associated with a rest of human mummy samples was carried out to characterise the biocenosis and to detect the potential of biodeteriogens. The rests of the human modern mummies come from a hypogeic site. Since mummies are relevant from a historic-artistic-scientific point of view, an aspect of this study was the identification and characterization of the biological systems related with biodeterioration of organic matter. In a first step, different sampling methods, according to the taxa, were applied. Technological procedures were combined in order to have an interdisciplinary approach to the conservation actions for testing future restoration protocols. Specimens were collected, identified and characterized by Microscopy (light, SEM, CLSM and molecular analyses (DNA extraction, in vitro target sequence amplification, sequencing, sequence analysis. The results highlight a rather complex biocenonsis consisting of fungi, cyanobacteria, several insects and other arthropods.

  16. Elongation factor-2: a useful gene for arthropod phylogenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regier, J C; Shultz, J W

    2001-07-01

    Robust resolution of controversial higher-level groupings within Arthropoda requires additional sources of characters. Toward this end, elongation factor-2 sequences (1899 nucleotides) were generated from 17 arthropod taxa (5 chelicerates, 6 crustaceans, 3 hexapods, 3 myriapods) plus an onychophoran and a tardigrade as outgroups. Likelihood and parsimony analyses of nucleotide and amino acid data sets consistently recovered Myriapoda and major chelicerate groups with high bootstrap support. Crustacea + Hexapoda (= Pancrustacea) was recovered with moderate support, whereas the conflicting group Myriapoda + Hexapoda (= Atelocerata) was never recovered and bootstrap values were always protein-encoding, nuclear gene (in addition to RNA polymerase II) to support Pancrustacea over Atelocerata. Atelocerata is widely cited in morphology-based analyses, and the discrepancy between results derived from molecular and morphological data deserves greater attention.

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

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    Leijiane F Sousa

    Full Text Available 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

  18. Pharmacological studies of the venom of an Australian bulldog ant (Myrmecia pyriformis).

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    Matuszek, M A; Hodgson, W C; Sutherland, S K; King, R G

    1994-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine some of the pharmacological actions of venom from the Australian bulldog ant Myrmecia pyriformis. M. pyriformis venom was prepared by extraction of venom sacs in distilled water and centrifugation to remove insoluble material. Venom (2 micrograms/ml) produced a biphasic response of isolated guinea-pig ileum, i.e., an initial rapid contraction followed by a slower prolonged contraction. The histamine antagonist mepyramine (0.1 microM) inhibited the first phase of this response by approximately 80%. In the isolated rat stomach fundus strip (histamine-insensitive), venom (2-4 micrograms/ml) produced only a single contraction. Responses to venom of egg-albumin-sensitized guinea-pig ileum, were not significantly different before and after an anaphylactic response induced in vitro by egg albumin (0.5 mg/ml). Fluorometric assay showed that histamine accounted for 3.5 +/- 0.5% of the dry weight of M. pyriformis venom. Both the lipoxygenase/cyclooxygenase inhibitor BW755C and the cyclooxygenase inhibitor indomethacin significantly inhibited the response to venom of guinea-pig ileum (second phase) and rat fundus strip. M. pyriformis venom caused hemolysis of guinea pig blood. The degree of hemolysis was reduced significantly when boiled venom was used. No evidence was found that the venom contains acetylcholine, bradykinin, or 5-hydroxytryptamine or that the venom releases histamine from guinea-pig ileum. However, the results indicate that the venom contains histamine-like activity. In addition the venom was found to cause the release of cyclooxygenase products and to contain a heat-sensitive hemolytic factor.

  19. Phenoptosis in arthropods and immortality of social insects.

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    Kartsev, V M

    2014-10-01

    In general, there are no drastic differences in phenoptosis patterns in plant and animal organisms. However, there are some specific features characteristic for insects and other arthropods: 1) their development includes metamorphosis with different biochemical laws at consecutive developmental stages; 2) arthropods can reduce or stop development and aging when in a state of diapause or temporal cold immobility; 3) their life cycle often correlates with seasonal changes of surroundings; 4) polymorphism is widespread - conspecifics differ by their lifespans and phenoptosis features; 5) lifespan-related sexual dimorphism is common; 6) significant situational plasticity of life cycle organization is an important feature; for example, the German wasp (Paravespula germanica) is obligatorily univoltine in the temperate zone, while in tropical regions its lifespan increases and leads to repeated reproduction; 7) life cycles of closely related species may differ significantly, for example, in contrast to German wasp, some tropical hornets (Vespa) have only one reproduction period. Surprisingly, many insect species have been shown to be subjected to gradual aging and phenoptosis, like the highest mammals. However, queens of social insects and some long-lived arachnids can apparently be considered non-aging organisms. In some species, lifespan is limited to one season, while others live much longer or shorter. Cases of one-time reproduction are rather rare. Aphagia is common in insects (over 10,000 species). Cannibalism is an important mortality factor in insects as well as in spiders. In social insects, which exist only in colonies (families), the lifetime of a colony can be virtually unlimited. However, in case of some species the developmental cycle and death of a colony after its completion are predetermined. Most likely, natural selection in insects does not lengthen individual lifespan, but favors increase in reproduction efficiency based on fast succession of

  20. Exploring the possibility of arthropod transmission of HCV.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Houldsworth, Annwyne

    2017-02-01

    Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is a major cause of chronic hepatitis, cirrhosis, and liver cancer occurring in up to 3% of the world's population. Parenteral exposure to HCV is the major mode of transmission of infection. Once established, infection will persist in up to 85% of individuals with only a minority of patients clearing viremia. Egypt has possibly the highest HCV prevalence in the world where 10-20% of the general population are infected with HCV. Endemic HCV appears to be concentrated in the tropics and sub-tropics where there are higher biting rates from insects. The question as to whether a bridge vector transmission is possible, via arthropods, both between humans and/or from an animal reservoir to humans is explored. Mechanical transmission, as opposed to biological transmission, is considered. Mechanical transmission can be an efficient way of transmitting an infection, as effective as biological transmission. Probability of transmission can increase as to the immediate circumstances and conditions at the time. Several factors may enhance mechanical transmission, including high levels of microbes in the vector, frequent biting, the close proximity, and contact between vectors and recipients as well as high density of insects. HCV has been isolated from bodies or heads of mosquitoes collected from the houses of HCV-infected individuals. The possibility of enzootic cycles of HCV tangential transmission via bridging vectors, such as, arthropods needs to be further investigated and possible animal reservoirs, including domestic rural epizootic cycles for HCV infection, requires further research with particular initial emphasis on equine infections. J. Med. Virol. 89:187-194, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Outline-based morphometrics, an overlooked method in arthropod studies?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dujardin, Jean-Pierre; Kaba, D; Solano, P; Dupraz, M; McCoy, K D; Jaramillo-O, N

    2014-12-01

    Modern methods allow a geometric representation of forms, separating size and shape. In entomology, as well as in many other fields involving arthropod studies, shape variation has proved useful for species identification and population characterization. In medical entomology, it has been applied to very specific questions such as population structure, reinfestation of insecticide-treated areas and cryptic species recognition. For shape comparisons, great importance is given to the quality of landmarks in terms of comparability. Two conceptually and statistically separate approaches are: (i) landmark-based morphometrics, based on the relative position of a few anatomical "true" or "traditional" landmarks, and (ii) outline-based morphometrics, which captures the contour of forms through a sequence of close "pseudo-landmarks". Most of the studies on insects of medical, veterinary or economic importance make use of the landmark approach. The present survey makes a case for the outline method, here based on elliptic Fourier analysis. The collection of pseudo-landmarks may require the manual digitization of many points and, for this reason, might appear less attractive. It, however, has the ability to compare homologous organs or structures having no landmarks at all. This strength offers the possibility to study a wider range of anatomical structures and thus, a larger range of arthropods. We present a few examples highlighting its interest for separating close or cryptic species, or characterizing conspecific geographic populations, in a series of different vector organisms. In this simple application, i.e. the recognition of close or cryptic forms, the outline approach provided similar scores as those obtained by the landmark-based approach.

  2. Animal venoms/toxins and the complement system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tambourgi, Denise V; van den Berg, Carmen W

    2014-10-01

    Nature is a wealthy source of agents that have been shown to be beneficial to human health, but nature is also a rich source of potential dangerous health damaging compounds. This review will summarise and discuss the agents from the animal kingdom that have been shown to interact with the human complement (C) system. Most of these agents are toxins found in animal venoms and animal secretions. In addition to the mechanism of action of these toxins, their contribution to the field of complement, their role in human pathology and the potential benefit to the venomous animal itself will be discussed. Potential therapeutic applications will also be discussed.

  3. A study of bacterial contamination of rattlesnake venom

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    E. Garcia-Lima

    1987-03-01

    Full Text Available The authors studied the bacterial contamination of rattlesnake venom isolated from snakes in captivity and wild snakes caught recently. The captive snakes showed a relatively high incidence of bacterial contamination of their venom.Os autores estudaram a contaminação bacteriana do veneno dë cascavéis mantidas em cativeiro e das recentemente capturadas. Verificaram que os venenos dos animais cativos apresentaram alta incidência de contaminação e os tidos como recentemente capturados estavam com baixa contaminação aparente.

  4. Biodistribution studies of bee venom and spider toxin using radiotracers

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    C. M. Yonamine

    2005-03-01

    Full Text Available The use of radiotracers allows the understanding of the bioavailability process, biodistribution, and kinetics of any molecule labelled with an isotope, which does not alter the molecule's biological properties. In this work, technetium-99m and iodine-125 were chosen as radiotracers for biodistribution studies in mice using bee (Apis mellifera venom and a toxin (PnTX2-6 from the Brazilian "armed" spider (Phoneutria nigriventer venom. Incorporated radioactivity was measured in the blood, brain, heart, lung, liver, kidney, adrenal gland, spleen, stomach, testicle, intestine, muscle, and thyroid gland. Results provided the blood kinetic parameter, and different organs distribution rates.

  5. Autonomic effects of some scorpion venoms and toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gwee, Matthew C E; Nirthanan, Selvanayagam; Khoo, Hoon-Eng; Gopalakrishnakone, Ponnampalam; Kini, R Manjunatha; Cheah, Li-Sam

    2002-09-01

    1. The autonomic effects of venoms and toxins from several species of scorpions, including the Indian red scorpion Mesobuthus tamulus, the Chinese scorpion Buthus martensi Karsch and the Israeli scorpion Leiurus quinquestriatus quinquestriatus, all belonging to Buthidae, and the Asian black scorpions Heterometrus longimanus and Heterometrus spinifer, belonging to Scorpionidae, are reviewed. 2. The effects of the venoms of M. tamulus and L. q. quinquestriatus on noradrenergic and nitrergic transmission in the rat isolated anococcygeus muscle revealed that both venoms mediated their pharmacological effects via a prejunctional mechanism involving the activation of voltage-sensitive sodium channels with consequent release of neurotransmitters that mediate target organ responses, similar to the effects mediated by other alpha-scorpion toxins. 3. Two new toxins, Makatoxin I and Bukatoxin, were purified to homogeneity from the venom of B. martensi Karsch. Determination of their complete amino acid sequences confirmed that both toxins belonged to the class of alpha-scorpion toxins. The effects of both toxins on noradrenergic and nitrergic transmission in the rat anococcygeus muscle provided firm evidence that their pharmacological actions also closely resembled those mediated by other alpha-scorpion toxins on neuronal voltage-sensitive sodium channels. 4. The venoms of H. longimanus and H. spinifer were found to have high concentrations of noradrenaline (1.8 +/- 0.3 mmol/L) and relatively high concentrations of acetylcholine (79.8 +/- 1.7 micromol/L) together with noradrenaline (146.7 +/- 19.8 micromol/L), respectively, which can account for their potent direct cholinergic and noradrenergic agonist actions in the rat anococcygeus muscle. 5. Our studies confirmed that the rat anococcygeus muscle is an excellent nerve-smooth muscle preparation for investigating the effects of bioactive agents on noradrenergic and nitrergic transmission, as well as the direct agonist actions

  6. Bioactive Mimetics of Conotoxins and other Venom Peptides

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    Peter J. Duggan

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Ziconotide (Prialt®, a synthetic version of the peptide ω-conotoxin MVIIA found in the venom of a fish-hunting marine cone snail Conus magnus, is one of very few drugs effective in the treatment of intractable chronic pain. However, its intrathecal mode of delivery and narrow therapeutic window cause complications for patients. This review will summarize progress in the development of small molecule, non-peptidic mimics of Conotoxins and a small number of other venom peptides. This will include a description of how some of the initially designed mimics have been modified to improve their drug-like properties.

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

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    Timothy N. W. Jackson

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available 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

  8. Acquisition of Cry1Ac protein by non-target arthropods in Bt soybean fields.

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    Huilin Yu

    Full Text Available Soybean tissue and arthropods were collected in Bt soybean fields in China at different times during the growing season to investigate the exposure of arthropods to the plant-produced Cry1Ac toxin and the transmission of the toxin within the food web. Samples from 52 arthropod species/taxa belonging to 42 families in 10 orders were analysed for their Cry1Ac content using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA. Among the 22 species/taxa for which three samples were analysed, toxin concentration was highest in the grasshopper Atractomorpha sinensis and represented about 50% of the concentration in soybean leaves. Other species/taxa did not contain detectable toxin or contained a concentration that was between 1 and 10% of that detected in leaves. These Cry1Ac-positive arthropods included a number of mesophyll-feeding Hemiptera, a cicadellid, a curculionid beetle and, among the predators, a thomisid spider and an unidentified predatory bug belonging to the Anthocoridae. Within an arthropod species/taxon, the Cry1Ac content sometimes varied between life stages (nymphs/larvae vs. adults and sampling dates (before, during, and after flowering. Our study is the first to provide information on Cry1Ac-expression levels in soybean plants and Cry1Ac concentrations in non-target arthropods in Chinese soybean fields. The data will be useful for assessing the risk of non-target arthropod exposure to Cry1Ac in soybean.

  9. Effects of persistent insecticides on beneficial soil arthropod in conventional fields compared to organic fields, puducherry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anbarashan, Padmavathy; Gopalswamy, Poyyamoli

    2013-07-15

    The usage of synthetic fertilizers/insecticides in conventional farming has dramatically increased over the past decades. The aim of the study was to compare the effects of bio-pesticides and insecticides/pesticides on selected beneficial non targeted arthropods. Orders Collembola, Arachinida/Opiliones, Oribatida and Coleoptera were the main groups of arthropods found in the organic fields and Coleoptera, Oribatida, Gamasida and Collembola in conventional fields. Pesticides/insecticides had a significant effect on non-targeted arthropods order- Collembola, Arachinida/Opiliones, Hymenoptera and Thysonoptera were suppressed after pesticides/insecticides spraying. Bio-insecticides in organic fields had a non-significant effect on non targeted species and they started to increase in abundance after 7 days of spraying, whereas insecticide treatment in conventional fields had a significant long-term effect on non targeted arthropods and short term effect on pests/insects, it started to increase after 21 days of the spraying. These results indicate that insecticide treatment kept non targeted arthropods at low abundance. In conclusion, organic farming does not significantly affected the beneficial-non targeted arthropods biodiversity, whereas preventive insecticide application in conventional fields had significant negative effects on beneficial non targeted arthropods. Therefore, conventional farmers should restrict insecticide applications, unless pest densities reach the thresholds and more desirably can switch to organic farming practices.

  10. Acquisition of Cry1Ac protein by non-target arthropods in Bt soybean fields.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Huilin; Romeis, Jörg; Li, Yunhe; Li, Xiangju; Wu, Kongming

    2014-01-01

    Soybean tissue and arthropods were collected in Bt soybean fields in China at different times during the growing season to investigate the exposure of arthropods to the plant-produced Cry1Ac toxin and the transmission of the toxin within the food web. Samples from 52 arthropod species/taxa belonging to 42 families in 10 orders were analysed for their Cry1Ac content using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Among the 22 species/taxa for which three samples were analysed, toxin concentration was highest in the grasshopper Atractomorpha sinensis and represented about 50% of the concentration in soybean leaves. Other species/taxa did not contain detectable toxin or contained a concentration that was between 1 and 10% of that detected in leaves. These Cry1Ac-positive arthropods included a number of mesophyll-feeding Hemiptera, a cicadellid, a curculionid beetle and, among the predators, a thomisid spider and an unidentified predatory bug belonging to the Anthocoridae. Within an arthropod species/taxon, the Cry1Ac content sometimes varied between life stages (nymphs/larvae vs. adults) and sampling dates (before, during, and after flowering). Our study is the first to provide information on Cry1Ac-expression levels in soybean plants and Cry1Ac concentrations in non-target arthropods in Chinese soybean fields. The data will be useful for assessing the risk of non-target arthropod exposure to Cry1Ac in soybean.

  11. Aerial arthropod communities of native and invaded forests, Robinson Crusoe Island, Chile.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagen, Erin N; Bakker, Jonathan D; Gara, Robert I

    2010-08-01

    Invasive species significantly contribute to biological change and threaten biodiversity, with a growing body of evidence that plant invasions affect higher trophic levels. We explored the relative importance of plant invasion and forest structure on aerial arthropod abundance, diversity, and composition on Robinson Crusoe Island, Chile. We used flight intercept traps to sample aerial arthropods within distinct canopy strata of native and invaded forests over 3-mo periods in 2006 and 2007. Arthropod abundance and diversity were higher in native than invaded forest, and arthropod communities were distinct between forest types. In both forest types, arthropod abundance was highest in the lower canopy, and canopy strata exhibited some differences in arthropod community composition. Several morphospecies were distinctly associated with each forest type. The strong differences in aerial arthropod communities associated with the invasion of native forest by non-native plants may affect other trophic levels, such as insectivorous birds. Steps to stop invasive plant spread and to restore native forest composition and structure are needed to safeguard the integrity of native communities, from plants to higher-level consumers.

  12. Arthropods of Medical Importance in Brazil: Retrospective Epidemiological Information about Accidents Involving these Animals

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    Danon Clemes Cardoso

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Problem statement: The epidemiological information about arthropods bites/sting in Criciúma region no was reported. The aim of this Research was to draw the epidemiologic profile of accidents with arthropods in Criciúma region. Approach: The information regarding accidents with arthropods from 1994-2006 was prospectively collected from SINAN (System of Injury Notification Information files of the 21a Municipal Health Secretary of Criciúma region. Was calculated the frequency for each variable studied and incidence coefficient for period of study. Results: Results were recorded 1821 notifications of accidents with arthropods in region studied. The numbers of occurrence increased along of the years studied. The arthropod that most result in accidents was the spider with 1,126 (75.9% cases followed by Honeybees and others Arthropods with 149 (10.0% cases, Caterpillars including Lonomia genus and others genera (54/3.7% and scorpions with the least number of accidents with 6 (0.4% cases. The incidence of accidents every thousand inhabitants had a significant increase starting in the year of 2000. The majority of accidents occurred in the warmest months, increasing in the spring and summer seasons. Was recorded more than twice of accidents with arthropods in Urban area than in rural areas. The Chi-square test revealed that the frequency of accidents between locations and type of arthropods is different. Likewise, the number the victims and activity type in moment of the bite/sting had been a differ behavior between arthropods type. However, the number of accidents involving victims of male and female gender is equal. Conclusion: Epidemiological studies of this type in the extreme south of Santa Catarina are scarce. Only few studies have reported the patterns of occurrence and incidence of accidents with poisonous animals. These and other studies are of great importance for implementation of measures mitigation programs and education for

  13. Sweeping beauty: is grassland arthropod community composition effectively estimated by sweep netting?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spafford, Ryan D; Lortie, Christopher J

    2013-01-01

    Arthropods are critical ecosystem components due to their high diversity and sensitivity to perturbation. Furthermore, due to their ease of capture they are often the focus of environmental health surveys. There is much debate regarding the best sampling method to use in these surveys. Sweep netting and pan trapping are two sampling methods commonly used in agricultural arthropod surveys, but have not been contrasted in natural grassland systems at the community level. The purpose of this study was to determine whether sweep netting was effective at estimating arthropod diversity at the community level in grasslands or if supplemental pan trapping was needed. Arthropods were collected from grassland sites in Montana, USA, in the summer of 2011. The following three standardized evaluation criteria (consistency, reliability, and precision) were developed to assess the efficacy of sweep netting and pan trapping, based on analyses of variations in arthropod abundances, species richness, evenness, capture frequency, and community composition. Neither sampling method was sufficient in any criteria to be used alone for community-level arthropod surveys. On a taxa-specific basis, however, sweep netting was consistent, reliable, and precise for Thysanoptera, infrequently collected (i.e., rare) insects, and Arachnida, whereas pan trapping was consistent, reliable, and precise for Collembola and bees, which is especially significant given current threats to the latter's populations worldwide. Species-level identifications increase the detected dissimilarity between sweep netting and pan trapping. We recommend that community-level arthropod surveys use both sampling methods concurrently, at least in grasslands, but likely in most nonagricultural systems. Target surveys, such as monitoring bee communities in fragmented grassland habitat or where detailed information on behavior of the target arthropod groups is available can in some instances employ singular methods. As a

  14. Grassland Arthropods Are Controlled by Direct and Indirect Interactions with Cattle but Are Largely Unaffected by Plant Provenance.

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    Kelly Anne Farrell

    Full Text Available Cattle grazing and invasion by non-native plant species are globally-ubiquitous changes occurring to plant communities that are likely to reverberate through whole food webs. We used a manipulative field experiment to quantify how arthropod community structure differed in native and non-native California grassland communities in the presence and absence of grazing. The arthropod community was strongly affected by cattle grazing: the biovolume of herbivorous arthropods was 79% higher in grazed than ungrazed plots, whereas the biovolume of predatory arthropods was 13% higher in ungrazed plots. In plots where non-native grasses were grazed, arthropod biovolume increased, possibly in response to increased plant productivity or increased nutritional quality of rapidly-growing annual plants. Grazing may thus affect plant biomass both through the direct removal of biomass, and through arthropod-mediated impacts. We also expected the arthropod community to differ between native and non-native plant communities; surprisingly, arthropod richness and diversity did not vary consistently between these grass community types, although arthropod abundance was slightly higher in plots with native and ungrazed grasses. These results suggest that whereas cattle grazing affects the arthropod community via direct and indirect pathways, arthropod community changes commonly associated with non-native plant invasions may not be due to the identity or dominance of the invasive species in those systems, but to accompanying changes in plant traits or functional group composition, not seen in this experiment because of the similarity of the plant communities.

  15. Determining with SEM, structure of the venom apparatus in the tube web spider, Segestria florentina (Araneae: Segestriidae

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    Suna Cebesoy

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available The objective of the present study was to describe functional morphological features of venom apparatus in the tube web spider, Segestria florentina (Rossi, 1790 (Araneae: Segestriidae by using scanning electron microscope (SEM. The venom apparatus is situated in the anterior part of the prosoma, and is composed of a pair of venom glands and chelicerae. The chelicera of S. florentina has two parts: basal segment and a movable articulated apical segment (fang. The cheliceral fang rests in a groove on the basal segment of chelicerae. A venom hole is located on the subterminal part of each fang. A pair of venom glands is completely separate but similar to each other within the prosoma. Each venom gland is surrounded by striated muscle bundles, such as with the capsules. The venom, produced in the venom glands, is carried by venom ducts passing throughout the chelicerae. Each venom gland has its own venom duct, chelicera and fang. The venom is excreted from the venom pore on the subterminal part of the fang by means of muscular contractions covering the venom gland.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  17. Coral snake venoms: mode of action and pathophysiology of experimental envenomation

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    Oswald Vital Brazil

    1987-06-01

    Full Text Available Coral snakes, the New World Elapidae, are included in the genera Micniroides and Micrurus. The genus Mlcrurus comprises nearly all coral snake species and those which are responsible for human snake-bite accidents. The following generalizations concerning the effects induced by their venoms, and their venom-properties can be made. Coral snake venoms are neurotoxic, producing loss of muscle strenght and death by respiratory paralysis. Local edema and necrosis are not induced nor blood coagulation or hemorrhages. Proteolysis activity is absent or of very low grade. They display phospholipase A2 activity. Nephrotoxic effects are not evoked. The main toxins from elapid venoms are postsynaptic and presynaptic neurotoxins and cardiotoxins. Phospholipases A2 endowed with myonecrotic or cardiotoxin-like properties are important toxic components from some elapid venoms. The mode of action of Micrurus frontalis, M. lemniscatus, M. corallinus and M. fulvius venoms has been investigated in isolated muscle preparations and is here discussed. It is shown that while M. frontalis and M. lemniscatus venoms must contain only neurotoxins that act at the cholinergic end-plate receptor (postsynaptic neurotoxins, M. corallinus venom also inhibits evoked acetylcholine release by the motor nerve endings (presynaptic neurotoxin-like effect and M. fulvius induces muscle fiber membrane depolarization (cardiotoxin-like effect. The effects produced by M. corallinus and M. fulvius venoms in vivo in dogs and M. frontalis venom in dogs and monkeys are also reported.

  18. The in vivo cardiovascular effects of an Australasian box jellyfish (Chiropsalmus sp.) venom in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramasamy, Sharmaine; Isbister, Geoffrey K; Seymour, Jamie E; Hodgson, Wayne C

    2005-03-01

    Using a new technique to extract venom from the nematocysts of jellyfish, the in vivo cardiovascular effects of Chiropsalmus sp. venom were investigated in anaesthetized rats. Chiropsalmus sp. venom (150 microg/kg, i.v.) produced a transient hypertensive response (44+/-4 mmHg; n=6) followed by hypotension and cardiovascular collapse. Concurrent artificial respiration or pretreatment with Chironex fleckeri antivenom (AV, 3000 U/kg, i.v.) did not have any effect on the venom-induced hypertensive response nor the subsequent cardiovascular collapse. The cardiovascular response of animals receiving venom after the infusion of MgSO4 (50-70 mM @ 0.25 ml/min, i.v.; n=5) alone, or in combination with AV (n=5), was not significantly different from rats receiving venom alone. Prior administration of prazosin (50 microg/kg, i.v.; n=4) or ketanserin (1 mg/kg, i.v.; n=4) did not significantly attenuate the hypertensive response nor prevent the cardiovascular collapse induced by venom (50 microg/kg, i.v.). In contrast to previous work examining C. fleckeri venom, administration of AV alone, or in combination with MgSO4, was not effective in preventing cardiovascular collapse following the administration of Chiropsalmus sp. venom. This indicates that the venom of the two related box jellyfish contain different lethal components and highlights the importance of species identification prior to initiating treatment regimes following jellyfish envenoming.

  19. Antivenom to the venom of the male Sydney funnel-web spider Atrax robustus: preliminary report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutherland, S K

    1980-10-18

    A purified rabbit IgG (antivenom) has been isolated from rabbits immunized with male Atrax robustus venom. This preparation has been shown to neutralize in vitro, male venom in a ratio of 97 microgram of IgG to 1 microgram of male venom. The venoms of a number of other members of the Atrax genus are also neutralized in vitro by this antivenom. Of particular importance is the fact that the venom of the extremely dangerous female A. formidabilis is neutralized. A serum harvest of 55 mL from an immunized rabbit yielded a total of 1.1869 g of immune IgG using the Protein A-Sepharose procedure. This quantity is sufficient antivenom to neutralize in vitro the average yield of 67 spiders. These findings suggest the preparation of an antivenom for human use is now feasible. The antivenom was shown to effectively neutralize venom in monkeys either when it was premixed with the venom before injection or when it was injected separately 10 minutes after injection of venom. This is the first time in-vitro and in-vivo neutralization of this venom has been demonstrated in the monkey. In other studies, a range of non-immunized animal sera was shown to have no inherent ability to neutralize male A. robustus venom in vitro.

  20. Effect of gamma irradiation on toxicity and immunogenicity of Androctonus australis hector venom

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Abib, L. [Univ. des Sciences et de la Technologie, Lab. de Biologie Cellulaire et Moleculaire, Faculte des Sciences Biologiques, Houari Boumedienne, Bab Ezzouar (Algeria); Laraba-Djebari, F. [Univ. des Sciences et de la Technologie, Lab. de Biologie Cellulaire et Moleculaire, Faculte des Sciences Biologiques, Houari Boumedienne, Bab Ezzouar, Alger (Algeria); Institut Pasteur d' Algerie, Lab. de Recherche et de Developpement sur les Venins, Alger (Algeria); E-mail: flaraba@ibnsina.ands.dz

    2003-12-01

    An investigation was made of the radiosensitivity of the toxic and immunological properties of Androctonus australis hector venom. This venom was irradiated with two doses of gamma rays (1 and 2 kGy) from a {sup 60}Co source. The results showed that venom toxicity was abolished for the two radiation doses (1 and 2 kGy) with, respectively, 10 and 25 times its initial LD50 value. However, irradiated venoms were immunogenic, and the antibodies elicited by them were able to recognize the native venom by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Antisera raised against these toxoids (1 and 2 kGy) had a higher neutralizing capacity and immunoreactivity against all components of native venom than did the antiserum produced against the native venom. The antiserum of rabbits immunized with 2-kGy-irradiated venom was more efficient than 1-kGy-irradiated toxoid antiserum. Indeed, in vivo protection assays showed that the mice immunized with 2-kGy-irradiated venom resisted lethal doses (i.p.) of A. australis hector venom. (author)

  1. ADP is a vasodilator component from Lasiodora sp. mygalomorph spider venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horta, C C; Rezende, B A; Oliveira-Mendes, B B R; Carmo, A O; Capettini, L S A; Silva, J F; Gomes, M T; Chávez-Olórtegui, C; Bravo, C E S; Lemos, V S; Kalapothakis, E

    2013-09-01

    Members of the spider genus Lasiodora are widely distributed in Brazil, where they are commonly known as caranguejeiras. Lasiodora spider venom is slightly harmful to humans. The bite of this spider causes local pain, edema and erythema. However, Lasiodora sp. spider venom may be a source of important pharmacological tools. Our research group has described previously that Lasiodora sp. venom produces bradycardia in the isolated rat heart. In the present work, we sought to evaluate the vascular effect of Lasiodora sp. venom and to isolate the vasoactive compounds from the venom. The results showed that Lasiodora spider venom induced a concentration-dependent vasodilation in rat aortic rings, which was dependent on the presence of a functional endothelium and abolished by the nitric oxide synthase (NOS) inhibitor L-NAME. Western blot experiments revealed that the venom also increased endothelial NOS function by increasing phosphorylation of the Ser¹¹⁷⁷ residue. Assay-directed fractionation isolated a vasoactive fraction from Lasiodora sp. venom. Mass spectrometry (MS) and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) assays identified a mixture of two compounds: adenosine diphosphate (ADP, approximately 90%) and adenosine monophosphate (AMP, approximately 10%). The vasodilator effects of Lasiodora sp. whole venom, as well as ADP, were significantly inhibited by suramin, which is a purinergic P2-receptor antagonist. Therefore, the results of the present work indicate that ADP is a main vasodilator component of Lasiodora sp. spider venom.

  2. Brown spider (Loxosceles intermedia) venom triggers endothelial cells death by anoikis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nowatzki, Jenifer; Sene, Reginaldo Vieira; Paludo, Katia Sabrina; Rizzo, Luiz Eduardo; Souza-Fonseca-Guimarães, Fernando; Veiga, Silvio Sanches; Nader, Helena Bonciani; Franco, Célia Regina C; Trindade, Edvaldo S

    2012-09-01

    Brown spider (Loxosceles sp.) venom affects the endothelium of vessels and triggers disruptive activity in the subendothelial matrix. The vascular disorders observed after venom exposure include leukocyte and platelet activation, disseminated intravascular coagulation, an increase in vessel permeability and hemorrhage into the dermis. In this study, we report additional evidence regarding the mechanism of endothelial cell cytotoxicity induced by Loxosceles intermedia venom. Exposure to venom led to endothelial cell detachment in a time-dependent manner. Loss of cell anchorage and cell-cell adhesion following venom exposure was accompanied by changes in the distribution of the α₅β₁ integrin and VE-cadherin. An ultrastructural analysis of cells treated with venom revealed morphological alterations characteristic of apoptosis. Moreover, after venom exposure, the ratio between Bax and Bcl-2 proteins was disturbed in favor of Bax. In addition, late apoptosis was only observed in cells detached by the action of venom. Accordingly, there was no increase in apoptosis when cells were exposed to L. intermedia venom in suspension, suggesting that the loss of cell anchorage provides the signal to initiate apoptosis. Thus, L. intermedia venom likely triggers endothelial cell death indirectly through an apoptotic mechanism known as anoikis.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sharon A Jansa

    Full Text Available 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.

  4. Venom variation in hemostasis of the southern Pacific rattlesnake (Crotalus oreganus helleri): isolation of hellerase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salazar, Ana Maria; Guerrero, Belsy; Cantu, Bruno; Cantu, Esteban; Rodríguez-Acosta, Alexis; Pérez, John C; Galán, Jacob A; Tao, Andy; Sánchez, Elda E

    2009-04-01

    Envenomations by the southern Pacific rattlesnake (Crotalus oreganus helleri) are the most common snakebite accidents in southern California. Intraspecies venom variation may lead to unresponsiveness to antivenom therapy. Even in a known species, venom toxins are recognized as diverse in conformity with interpopulational, seasonal, ontogenetic and individual factors. Five venoms of individual C. oreganus helleri located in Riverside and San Bernardino counties of southern California were studied for their variation in their hemostatic activity. The results demonstrated that Riverside 2 and San Bernardino 1 venoms presented the highest lethal activity without hemorrhagic activity. In contrast, San Bernardino 2 and 3 venoms had the highest hemorrhagic and fibrinolytic activities with low lethal and coagulant activities. Riverside 1, Riverside 2 and San Bernardino 1 venoms presented a significant thrombin-like activity. San Bernardino 2 and 3 venoms presented an insignificant thrombin-like activity. In relation to the fibrinolytic activity, San Bernardino 3 venom was the most active on fibrin plates, which was in turn neutralized by metal chelating inhibitors. These results demonstrate the differences amongst C. oreganus helleri venoms from close localities. A metalloproteinase, hellerase, was purified by anionic and cationic exchange chromatographies from San Bernardino 3 venom. Hellerase exhibited the ability to break fibrin clots in vitro, which can be of biomedically importance in the treatment of heart attacks and strokes.

  5. [Effects of venom from Sclerodermus sichuanensis Xiao on pupa of Tenebrio molitor].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhuo, Zhi-Hang; Yang, Wei; Qin, Huan; Yang, Chun-Ping; Yang, Hua; Xu, Dan-Ping

    2013-11-01

    To explore the regulatory mechanisms of parasitism of Sclerodermus sichuanensis on Tenebrio molitor, the methods of natural parasitism and venom injection were adopted to investigate the effects of the venom from S. sichuanensis on the pupa of T. molitor in the parasitic process. Under venom injection, the paralytic degree of the pupa had a positive correlation with the concentration of injected venom, and the number of recovered pupa had a negative correlation with the injected venom concentration. The T. molitor pupa was in slight and reversible paralysis when injected with 0.01 VRE (venom reservoir equivalent) of venom, and in non-reversible and complete paralysis when 0.2 VRE was injected. The pupa died massively and appeared a wide range of melanization when injected with soil bacterial suspension alone, but the melanization delayed and the mortality declined significantly when the mixed liquor of bacterium and venom was injected. The bacteriostasis of the venom on Staphylococcus aureus was significantly stronger than that on Escherichia coli. Within a definite range of temperature, the paralytic activity decreased significantly with increasing temperature, the bacteriostasis on S. aureus increased significantly, while that on E. coli was opposite. This study showed that the venom from S. sichuanensis had the effects of paralysis, bacteriostasis, inhibiting exuviations, and delaying melanization.

  6. An in vivo examination of the stability of venom from the Australian box jellyfish Chironex fleckeri.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winter, K L; Isbister, G K; Seymour, J E; Hodgson, W C

    2007-05-01

    We have previously characterised the pharmacological activity of a number of jellyfish venoms with a particular emphasis on the profound cardiovascular effects. It has been suggested that jellyfish venoms are difficult to work with and are sensitive to pH, temperature and chemical changes. The current study aimed to examine the working parameters of the venom of the Australian box jellyfish Chironex fleckeri to enable fractionation and isolation of the toxins with cardiovascular activity. C. fleckeri venom was made up fresh each day and subjected to a number of different environments (i.e. a pH range of 5-9 and a temperature range of 4-30 degrees C). In addition, the effect of freeze drying and reconstituting the venom was investigated. Venom (50 microg/kg, i.v.) produced a transient hypertensive response followed by cardiovascular collapse in anaesthetised rats. This biphasic response was not significantly effected by preparation of the venom at a pH of 5, 7 or 9. Similarly, venom (50 microg/kg, i.v.) did not display a loss of activity when exposed to temperatures of 4, 20 or 30 degrees C for 1.5h. However, the cardiovascular activity was abolished by boiling the venom. Freeze drying, and then reconstituting, the venom did not significantly affect its cardiovascular activity. However, repeated freeze drying and reconstituting of extracted venom resulted in a significantly loss of activity. This study provides a more detailed knowledge of the parameters in which C. fleckeri venom can be used and, while supporting some previous studies, contradicts some of the perceived problems of working with the venom.

  7. A pharmacological and biochemical examination of the geographical variation of Chironex fleckeri venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winter, Kelly L; Isbister, Geoffrey K; McGowan, Sheena; Konstantakopoulos, Nicki; Seymour, Jamie E; Hodgson, Wayne C

    2010-02-15

    Chironex fleckeri (box jellyfish) are found in the northern tropical waters of Australia. Although C. fleckeri have a wide geographical distribution and are able to swim large distances, adults tend to stay in small restricted areas. Clinical data shows that deaths from envenoming have not been recorded in Western Australia, yet numerous fatalities have occurred in Northern Territory and Queensland waters. One explanation for this discrepancy is a geographical variation in venom composition. This study examined the pharmacological and biochemical profiles of C. fleckeri venom from different geographical locations and seasons. Venoms were screened for cytotoxicity using a rat aortic smooth muscle cell line (A7r5). While all venoms caused concentration-dependent cytotoxicity, differences were seen in the potency of venoms from Mission Beach and Weipa, when collected in different seasons, as indicated by IC(50) values. Similarly venoms collected within the same season, from different locations around Australia, displayed marked differences in venom composition as shown by size exclusion HPLC and SDS-PAGE profiles which indicated the absence or reduced quantity of 'peaks' in some venoms. Based on IC(50) data obtained from the cell assay, the effects of the most potent (i.e. from Weipa in 2006) and the least potent (i.e. from Broome in 2007) venoms were examined in anesthetised rats. Both venoms at 10 microg/kg (i.v.) caused a transient hypertensive phase followed by cardiovascular collapse. However, at 4 microg/kg (i.v.) venom from Weipa 2006 caused a transient hypertensive phase followed by a transient decrease in MAP while venom from Broome 2007 only caused a small transient increase in MAP. This study demonstrates that there is considerable geographical variation in the composition of C. fleckeri venoms which is most distinct between specimens from western and eastern Australia and may explain the geographical variation in reported deaths.

  8. Cobra venom cytotoxins; apoptotic or necrotic agents?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ebrahim, Karim; Shirazi, Farshad H; Mirakabadi, Abbas Zare; Vatanpour, Hossein

    2015-12-15

    Organs homeostasis is controlled by a dynamic balance between cell proliferation and apoptosis. Failure to induction of apoptosis has been implicated in tumor development. Cytotoxin-I (CTX-I) and cytotoxin-II (CTX-II) are two physiologically active polypeptides found in Caspian cobra venom. Anticancer activity and mechanism of cell death induced by these toxins have been studied. The toxins were purified by different chromatographic steps and their cytotoxicity and pattern of cell death were determined by MTT, LDH release, acridine orange/ethidium bromide (AO/EtBr) double staining, flow cytometric analysis, caspase-3 activity and neutral red assays. The IC50 of CTX-II in MCF-7, HepG2, DU-145 and HL-60 was 4.1 ± 1.3, 21.2 ± 4.4, 9.4 ± 1.8 μg/mL and 16.3 ± 1.9 respectively while the IC50 of this toxin in normal MDCK cell line was 54.5 ± 3.9 μg/mL. LDH release suddenly increase after a specific toxins concentrations in all cell lines. AO/EtBr double staining, flow cytometric analysis and caspase-3 activity assay confirm dose and time-dependent induction of apoptosis by both toxins. CTX-I and CTX-II treated cells lost their lysosomal membrane integrity and couldn't uptake neutral red day. CTX-I and CTX-II showed significant anticancer activity with minimum effects on normal cells and better IC50 compared to current anticancer drug; cisplatin. They induce their apoptotic effect via lysosomal pathways and release of cathepsins to cytosol. These effects were seen in limited rage of toxins concentrations and pattern of cell death rapidly changes to necrosis by increase in toxin's concentration. In conclusion, significant apoptogenic effects of these toxins candidate them as a possible anticancer agent.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  10. Arthropod trace fossils from the Zhujiaqing Formation (Meishucunian, Yunnan) and their palaeobiological implications

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Bernd WEBER1; ZHU Maoyan

    2003-01-01

    Along with several non-arthropod ichnotaxa and rather non-specific scratchmarks, the Upper Phosphate of the Zhujiaqing Formation (Early Meishucunian Stage) in Eastern Yunnan yielded well-preserved resting and digging traces of the Rusophycus-type interpreted as resting traces of unknown large arthropods (ca. 3~6 cm in length). The discernible morphological details of these trace fossils enable a rough estimation of the body plan characteristics of the trace originators placing the latter doubtless into the early arthropods, if not euarthropods. The spectrum of the Meishucunian ichnoassemblage, especially the different types of arthropod repichnia point to the existence of a complex benthic ecosystem consisting of animals with different behavioural patterns and life styles already during the earliest Cambrian (Nemakit-Daldyn), and demands the assumption of a longer evolutionary past history of the benthic life on earth before the so-called "Cambrian Explosion" of the metazoans.

  11. Introduction to symposium: Arthropods and wildlife conservation: synergy in complex biological systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    The symposium will discuss the effects of arthropods and other stressors on wildlife conservation programs. Speakers with affiliations in wildlife biology, parasitology and entomology will be included in the program. Research of national and international interest will be presented....

  12. Venom Gland Transcriptomic and Proteomic Analyses of the Enigmatic Scorpion Superstitionia donensis (Scorpiones: Superstitioniidae), with Insights on the Evolution of Its Venom Components

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santibáñez-López, Carlos E.; Cid-Uribe, Jimena I.; Batista, Cesar V. F.; Ortiz, Ernesto; Possani, Lourival D.

    2016-01-01

    Venom gland transcriptomic and proteomic analyses have improved our knowledge on the diversity of the heterogeneous components present in scorpion venoms. However, most of these studies have focused on species from the family Buthidae. To gain insights into the molecular diversity of the venom components of scorpions belonging to the family Superstitioniidae, one of the neglected scorpion families, we performed a transcriptomic and proteomic analyses for the species Superstitionia donensis. The total mRNA extracted from the venom glands of two specimens was subjected to massive sequencing by the Illumina protocol, and a total of 219,073 transcripts were generated. We annotated 135 transcripts putatively coding for peptides with identity to known venom components available from different protein databases. Fresh venom collected by electrostimulation was analyzed by LC-MS/MS allowing the identification of 26 distinct components with sequences matching counterparts from the transcriptomic analysis. In addition, the phylogenetic affinities of the found putative calcins, scorpines, La1-like peptides and potassium channel κ toxins were analyzed. The first three components are often reported as ubiquitous in the venom of different families of scorpions. Our results suggest that, at least calcins and scorpines, could be used as molecular markers in phylogenetic studies of scorpion venoms. PMID:27941686

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-04-01

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

  14. The tripartite associations between bacteriophage, Wolbachia, and arthropods.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    2006-05-01

    Full Text Available By manipulating arthropod reproduction worldwide, the heritable endosymbiont Wolbachia has spread to pandemic levels. Little is known about the microbial basis of cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI except that bacterial densities and percentages of infected sperm cysts associate with incompatibility strength. The recent discovery of a temperate bacteriophage (WO-B of Wolbachia containing ankyrin-encoding genes and virulence factors has led to intensifying debate that bacteriophage WO-B induces CI. However, current hypotheses have not considered the separate roles that lytic and lysogenic phage might have on bacterial fitness and phenotype. Here we describe a set of quantitative approaches to characterize phage densities and its associations with bacterial densities and CI. We enumerated genome copy number of phage WO-B and Wolbachia and CI penetrance in supergroup A- and B-infected males of the parasitoid wasp Nasonia vitripennis. We report several findings: (1 variability in CI strength for A-infected males is positively associated with bacterial densities, as expected under the bacterial density model of CI, (2 phage and bacterial densities have a significant inverse association, as expected for an active lytic infection, and (3 CI strength and phage densities are inversely related in A-infected males; similarly, males expressing incomplete CI have significantly higher phage densities than males expressing complete CI. Ultrastructural analyses indicate that approximately 12% of the A Wolbachia have phage particles, and aggregations of these particles can putatively occur outside the Wolbachia cell. Physical interactions were observed between approximately 16% of the Wolbachia cells and spermatid tails. The results support a low to moderate frequency of lytic development in Wolbachia and an overall negative density relationship between bacteriophage and Wolbachia. The findings motivate a novel phage density model of CI in which lytic phage repress

  15. Arthropod diversity in pure oak forests of coppice origin in northern Thrace (Turkey

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keten A

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Oak (Quercus spp. forests are among the most important forest types in Turkey. In the past, oak forests were managed through coppice clear-cutting, but in recent decades they have mostly been converted to high forest. This study was aimed at explaining how arthropod diversity is affected during conversion from coppice to high oak forest and during the early stages of coppice succession. We tested the hypothesis that arthropod richness, abundance and diversity in coppice oak sites varied according to stand age and a number of other forest characteristics. Arthropod communities were sampled in 50 plots using four different methods: pitfall traps, sweep nets, sticky cards and cloth shaking. A total of 13 084 individuals were collected and classified into 193 Recognizable Taxonomic Units (RTUs, with the most RTUs and the greatest number of specimens captured by sweep netting. We identified 17 taxa within RTU’s with more than 1% of the captured arthropods, which constituted 75% of the total specimens. The number of RTUs varied significantly according to trap type. Arthropod richness and Shannon-Wiener biodiversity index (H′ increased with elevation and precipitation. In young (1-40 yrs-old and middle-aged (41-80 yrs stands, arthropod biodiversity was not significantly affected by stand type, but slightly increased with diameter at breast height and tree height. Forest characteristics, such as the litter layer, understory and crown diameter, weakly influenced arthropod richness and abundance. Cluster analysis revealed that stand types and trap types differed taxonomically. Principal component analysis showed that stand types were clearly separated by the stand parameters measured. Insect families (Formicidae, Thripidae, Lygaeidae, Dolichopodidae, Luaxanidae, Cicadellidae and Ichneumonidae could potentially be used as indicators of coppice oak conditions. As the coppice oak changes to mature forest, further studies are needed to better assess the

  16. Dynamics of the leaf-litter arthropod fauna following fire in a neotropical woodland savanna.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heraldo L Vasconcelos

    Full Text Available Fire is an important agent of disturbance in tropical savannas, but relatively few studies have analyzed how soil-and-litter dwelling arthropods respond to fire disturbance despite the critical role these organisms play in nutrient cycling and other biogeochemical processes. Following the incursion of a fire into a woodland savanna ecological reserve in Central Brazil, we monitored the dynamics of litter-arthropod populations for nearly two years in one burned and one unburned area of the reserve. We also performed a reciprocal transplant experiment to determine the effects of fire and litter type on the dynamics of litter colonization by arthropods. Overall arthropod abundance, the abundance of individual taxa, the richness of taxonomic groups, and the species richness of individual taxa (Formiciade were lower in the burned site. However, both the ordinal-level composition of the litter arthropod fauna and the species-level composition of the litter ant fauna were not dramatically different in the burned and unburned sites. There is evidence that seasonality of rainfall interacts with fire, as differences in arthropod abundance and diversity were more pronounced in the dry than in the wet season. For many taxa the differences in abundance between burned and unburned sites were maintained even when controlling for litter availability and quality. In contrast, differences in abundance for Collembola, Formicidae, and Thysanoptera were only detected in the unmanipulated samples, which had a lower amount of litter in the burned than in the unburned site throughout most of our study period. Together these results suggest that arthropod density declines in fire-disturbed areas as a result of direct mortality, diminished resources (i.e., reduced litter cover and less favorable microclimate (i.e., increased litter desiccation due to reduction in tree cover. Although these effects were transitory, there is evidence that the increasingly prevalent fire

  17. Possible developmental mechanisms underlying the origin of the crown lineages of arthropods

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WANG Xiuqiang; CHEN Junyuan

    2004-01-01

    The extraordinarily preserved, diverse arthropod fauna from the Lower Cambrian Maotianshan shale, central Yunnan (southwest China), represents different evolutionary stages stepping from stem lineages towards crown arthropods (also called euarthropods), which makes this fauna extremely significant for discussion of the origin and early diversification of the arthropods. Anatomical analyses of the Maotianshan shale arthropods strongly indicate that the origin of crown arthropods involved three major evolutionary events, arthrodisation, arthropodisation and cephali- zation. We try to explore possible evolutionary changes of the developmental mechanism that may have underlain origins of euarthropod appendage and head. Fossil evidence suggests that the formation of a jointed limb known as arthropodisation and formation of multi-segmented head (called cephalization), which characterize euarthropods, is an event after arthrodisation characterized with the formation of segmented-exoskeleton and the joint membrane between tergites. We propose that the Hox complex was already operating at least as early as in the Early Cambrian and is responsible for the formation of the joint membrane between two semgents through Hox gene regulation along the D-V and P-D axis. Fossil evidence indicates that the head in ground state of arthropods consists only of two segments, an ocular and an antennal one. The formation of multiple segmented, euarthropod head (called syncephalon) from the two-segmented head was a separate event, which is called cephali- zation. Presence of the Hox gene head expression domain and change of developmental mechanism in head segments might be responsible for the formation of the syncephalon and this event has been broadly finished in the Early Cambrian arthropods. The post-oral limbs in the early syncephalons as evidenced from the Lower Cambrian Maotianshan shale arthropods however were almost identical to those in trunk. Therefore we proposed that the Hox

  18. Combined venomics, venom gland transcriptomics, bioactivities, and antivenomics of two Bothrops jararaca populations from geographic isolated regions within the Brazilian Atlantic rainforest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonçalves-Machado, Larissa; Pla, Davinia; Sanz, Libia; Jorge, Roberta Jeane B; Leitão-De-Araújo, Moema; Alves, Maria Lúcia M; Alvares, Diego Janisch; De Miranda, Joari; Nowatzki, Jenifer; de Morais-Zani, Karen; Fernandes, Wilson; Tanaka-Azevedo, Anita Mitico; Fernández, Julián; Zingali, Russolina B; Gutiérrez, José María; Corrêa-Netto, Carlos; Calvete, Juan J

    2016-03-01

    Bothrops jararaca is a slender and semi-arboreal medically relevant pit viper species endemic to tropical and subtropical forests in southern Brazil, Paraguay, and northern Argentina (Misiones). Within its geographic range, it is often abundant and is an important cause of snakebite. Although no subspecies are currently recognized, geographic analyses have revealed the existence of two well-supported B. jararaca clades that diverged during the Pliocene ~3.8Mya and currently display a southeastern (SE) and a southern (S) Atlantic rainforest (Mata Atlântica) distribution. The spectrum, geographic variability, and ontogenetic changes of the venom proteomes of snakes from these two B. jararaca phylogroups were investigated applying a combined venom gland transcriptomic and venomic analysis. Comparisons of the venom proteomes and transcriptomes of B. jararaca from the SE and S geographic regions revealed notable interpopulational variability that may be due to the different levels of population-specific transcriptional regulation, including, in the case of the southern population, a marked ontogenetic venom compositional change involving the upregulation of the myotoxic PLA2 homolog, bothropstoxin-I. This population-specific marker can be used to estimate the proportion of venom from the southern population present in the B. jararaca venom pool used for the Brazilian soro antibotrópico (SAB) antivenom production. On the other hand, the southeastern population-specific D49-PLA2 molecules, BinTX-I and BinTX-II, lend support to the notion that the mainland ancestor of Bothrops insularis was originated within the same population that gave rise to the current SE B. jararaca phylogroup, and that this insular species endemic to Queimada Grande Island (Brazil) expresses a pedomorphic venom phenotype. Mirroring their compositional divergence, the two geographic B. jararaca venom pools showed distinct bioactivity profiles. However, the SAB antivenom manufactured in Vital Brazil

  19. Spider genomes provide insight into composition and evolution of venom and silk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanggaard, Kristian W; Bechsgaard, Jesper S; Fang, Xiaodong; Duan, Jinjie; Dyrlund, Thomas F; Gupta, Vikas; Jiang, Xuanting; Cheng, Ling; Fan, Dingding; Feng, Yue; Han, Lijuan; Huang, Zhiyong; Wu, Zongze; Liao, Li; Settepani, Virginia; Thøgersen, Ida B; Vanthournout, Bram; Wang, Tobias; Zhu, Yabing; Funch, Peter; Enghild, Jan J; Schauser, Leif; Andersen, Stig U; Villesen, Palle; Schierup, Mikkel H; Bilde, Trine; Wang, Jun

    2014-05-06

    Spiders are ecologically important predators with complex venom and extraordinarily tough silk that enables capture of large prey. Here we present the assembled genome of the social velvet spider and a draft assembly of the tarantula genome that represent two major taxonomic groups of spiders. The spider genomes are large with short exons and long introns, reminiscent of mammalian genomes. Phylogenetic analyses place spiders and ticks as sister groups supporting polyphyly of the Acari. Complex sets of venom and silk genes/proteins are identified. We find that venom genes evolved by sequential duplication, and that the toxic effect of venom is most likely activated by proteases present in the venom. The set of silk genes reveals a highly dynamic gene evolution, new types of silk genes and proteins, and a novel use of aciniform silk. These insights create new opportunities for pharmacological applications of venom and biomaterial applications of silk.

  20. Cardiotoxic effects of venom fractions from the Australian box jellyfish Chironex fleckeri on human myocardiocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saggiomo, Silvia L A; Seymour, Jamie E

    2012-09-01

    An investigation into the cardiotoxic effects in human cardiomyocytes of different fractions (as produced from an FPLC) of the venom from Chironex fleckeri showed that whole venom caused cardiac cell death in minutes, measured as cell detachment using xCELLigence technology. However, only one fraction of the venom was responsible for this effect. When all extracted venoms were recombined a similar result was seen for the toxic fraction, however these effects were slower than unfractionated venom alone even though the concentrations were similar. The difference in the results between fractioned and unfractionated venom may have been caused by compounds remaining in the FPLC column, which may interact with the toxic fraction to cause rapid cell detachment or death.

  1. Proteomic Analyses of Agkistrodon contortrix contortrix Venom Using 2D Electrophoresis and MS Techniques.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  2. Proteomic Analyses of Agkistrodon contortrix contortrix Venom Using 2D Electrophoresis and MS Techniques

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aleksandra Bocian

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available 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.

  3. Histopathological evaluation in experimental envenomation of dogs with Crotalus durissus terrificus venom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Sangiorgio

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The present work evaluated histopathological aspects in experimental envenomation of dogs with Crotalus durissus terrificus venom. Twenty-eight mixed breed adult dogs were divided into three groups of seven animals each: Group I - only venom; Group II - venom + 50ml antiophidic serum + fluid therapy; Group III - venom + 50ml antiophidic serum + fluid therapy + urine alkalization. Lyophilized venom of Crotalus durissus terrificus was reconstituted in saline solution and inoculated subcutaneously at the dose of 1mg/kg body weight. Three animals of each group were subjected to euthanasia, and their muscular tissue, brain, spleen, kidneys, heart, lungs, stomach, small and large intestines, and popliteal lymph node fragments were collected for histopathological evaluation. There was myonecrosis in the inoculated limb, renal tubular degeneration, lymphoid hyperplasia of spleen, and unspecific reactive hepatitis. These results show the antigenicity and action of the venom on the immune system.

  4. Efficacy of tannins from Mimosa pudica and tannic acid in neutralizing cobra (Naja kaouthia venom

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    FY Sia

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available In the present study, the effectiveness of Mimosa pudica tannins (MPT in neutralizing the lethality of Naja kaouthia venom was compared with commercially derived tannins. Preincubation of MPT with N. kaouthia venom maintained 100% survival of mice after 24 hours. The mouse group in which there was no preincubation, no protection against the effects of the venom was observed. M. pudica tannin was found to be more effective in neutralizing the lethality of N. kaouthia venom when compared to commercial tannic acid. Two protein spots were missing in the two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2-DE of the MPT treated mouse indicating the down-regulation of venom proteins. The results from this study indicated that tannins obtained from M. pudica are better than tannic acid in neutralizing the lethality of N. kaouthia venom in vitro. However, further investigations are required to establish that M. pudica has potential for treating N. kaouthia snakebites.

  5. Ctenus medius and Phoneutria nigriventer spiders venoms share noxious proinflammatory activities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okamoto, Cinthya Kimori; Gonçalves-De-Andrade, Rute M; Queiroz, Giselle Pidde; Gutierez, Vanessa P; De Almeida, Daniel Manzoni; Cury, Yara; Bertani, Rogério; Portaro, Fernanda C V; Tambourgi, Denise V

    2009-01-01

    Ctenus medius Keyserling, 1891 (Araneae: Ctenidae) co-occurs in various microhabitats of the Brazilian Atlantic Forest and can be easily misidentified as the medically important spider Phoneutria nigriventer Keyserling, 1981 (Ctenidae). Despite being phylogenetically close to Phoneutria, no data are available about the toxic potential of Ctenus medius venom. Here we show that, although presenting different profile of protein composition, C. medius venom displays some of the toxic properties exhibited by P. nigriventer venom, including proteolytic, hyaluronidasic and phospholipasic activities, as well as the ability of causing hyperalgesia and edema. Moreover, C. medius venom interferes in the activation of the complement system in concentrations that P. nigriventer venom is inactive. Thus, these data show that venoms of spiders from Ctenidae family share important proinflammatory properties and suggest that the C. medius bite may have an important noxious effect in human accidents.

  6. Arthropod-borne infections in travelled dogs in Europe

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hamel Dietmar

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Pet animal movement is ever increasing within the European Union and in that context canine vectorborne infections gained a considerable importance. Information on these infections in travelled dogs is nevertheless limited. A first prospective study on vector-borne infections was conducted in 106 dogs travelling from Germany to countries in South and South-East Europe. The dogs were screened prior to and consecutively up to three times after travel by haematological (Giemsa-stained buffy coat smears, Knott’s-Test, molecular biological (PCR as well as serological (IFAT, DiroChek®-ELISA methods for arthropod-borne infections. Seven animals were seropositive for antibodies against Babesia canis sspp., Leishmania spp. and/or Ehrlichia canis prior to travel to Italy, Spain, France, Croatia, Greece, or Hungary. In the consecutive screening after return there was no increase in the number of seropositive dogs. None was positive in direct methods. The mean duration of the stay was 17 days and 51% of the dogs were prophylactically treated with ectoparasiticidal formulations. Preliminary data from this study on canine vector-borne infections indicate a low risk for infection during a limited single stay in endemic countries.

  7. Arthropod phylogeny based on eight molecular loci and morphology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giribet, G.; Edgecombe, G. D.; Wheeler, W. C.

    2001-01-01

    The interrelationships of major clades within the Arthropoda remain one of the most contentious issues in systematics, which has traditionally been the domain of morphologists. A growing body of DNA sequences and other types of molecular data has revitalized study of arthropod phylogeny and has inspired new considerations of character evolution. Novel hypotheses such as a crustacean-hexapod affinity were based on analyses of single or few genes and limited taxon sampling, but have received recent support from mitochondrial gene order, and eye and brain ultrastructure and neurogenesis. Here we assess relationships within Arthropoda based on a synthesis of all well sampled molecular loci together with a comprehensive data set of morphological, developmental, ultrastructural and gene-order characters. The molecular data include sequences of three nuclear ribosomal genes, three nuclear protein-coding genes, and two mitochondrial genes (one protein coding, one ribosomal). We devised new optimization procedures and constructed a parallel computer cluster with 256 central processing units to analyse molecular data on a scale not previously possible. The optimal 'total evidence' cladogram supports the crustacean-hexapod clade, recognizes pycnogonids as sister to other euarthropods, and indicates monophyly of Myriapoda and Mandibulata.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-08-01

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

  9. Standardization of anti-lethal toxin potency test of antivenoms prepared from two different Agkistrodon halys venoms

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    K. H. Lee

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available In Korea, antivenoms for the treatment of patients bitten by venomous snakes have been imported from Japan or China. Although there is cross-reactivity between these antibodies and venoms from snakes indigenous to Korea (e.g. Agkistrodon genus, protection is not optimal. Antivenoms specifically prepared to neutralize Korean snake venoms could be more effective, with fewer side effects. To this end, we established an infrastructure to develop national standards and created a standardized method to evaluate the efficacy of two horse-derived antivenoms using mouse lethal toxin test. Additionally, we determined the antivenoms neutralizing activity against lethal doses (LD50 of Agkistrodon halys (from Japan and Jiangzhe Agkistrodon halys (from China venoms. We also performed cross-neutralization tests using probit analysis on each pairing of venom and antivenom in order to check the possibility of using Jiangzhe A. halys venom as a substitute for A. halys venom, the current standard. Slope of A. halys venom with A. halys antivenom was 10.2 and that of A. halys venom with Jiangzhe A. halys antivenom was 9.6. However, Slope of Jiangzhe A. halys venom with A. halys antivenom was 4.7 while that of Jiangzhe A. halys venom with Jiangzhe A. halys antivenom was 11.5. Therefore, the significant difference in slope patterns suggests that Jiangzhe A. halys venom cannot be used as a substitute for the standard venom to test the anti-lethal toxin activity of antivenoms (p<0.05.

  10. Purification of the Immunogenic Fractions and Determination of Toxicity in Mesobuthus eupeus (Scorpionida: Buthidae Venom.

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    Mehdi Khoobdel

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Scorpions stings are a health problem in many parts of the world. Mesobuthus eupeus (Buthidae is the most prevalent species in the Middle East and Central Asia. Definition of toxicogenic and immunogenic characteristics of the venom is necessary to produce antidote. In this study, the noted properties of M. eupeus venom were evaluated.Venom was obtained by milking M. eupeus scorpions for lyophilization. Toxicity was determined after injecting the venom to albino mice and calculating LD50. Polyclonal antibodies against M. eupeus venom were obtained from immunized rabbits. The CH-Sepharose 4B column was used for isolating the specific antibodies. 10 mg of the affinity-purified antibodies were conjugated with a CH-Sepharose 4B column and M. eupeus venom was applied to the column. The bound fragments were eluted using hydrogen chloride (pH: 2.5. Crude venom and affinity-purified fractions of the venom were analyzed by SDS-PAGE technique.Lethal dose (LD was 8.75, 11.5 and 4.5 mg/kg for IP, SC and IV respectively. The LD50 of M. eupeus venom was 6.95 mg/kg. The crude venom had 12 detectable bands with molecular weights of 140, 70, 50, 33, 30, 27, 22, 18, 14, 10 kDa and two bands less than 5 kDa. The affinity-purified venom presented eight bands. The 27 kDa band was clearly sharper than other bands but 70, 18, 10 and one of the less than 5 kDa bands were not observed.Contrary to popular belief, which know scorpion venom as non-immunogenic composition, the current study was shown that the most fractions of the M. eupeus are immunogenic.

  11. Partial Purification and Characterization of Anticoagulant Factor from the Snake (Echis carinatus) Venom

    OpenAIRE

    2013-01-01

    Objective(s): Snake venoms contain complex mixture of proteins with biological activities. Some of these proteins affect blood coagulation and platelet function in different ways. Snake venom toxin may serve as a starting material for drug design to combat several pathophysiological problems such as cardiovascular disorders. In the present study, purification of anticoagulation factor from venom of snake (Echis carinatus) was studied. Materials and Methods: Anticoagulation activity of crude v...

  12. Differential gene expression profiles in the venom gland/sac of Eumenes pomiformis (Hymenoptera: Eumenidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baek, Ji Hyeong; Lee, Si Hyeock

    2010-06-01

    To search for novel transcripts encoding biologically active venom components, a subtractive cDNA library specific to the venom gland and sac (gland/sac) of a solitary hunting wasp species, Eumenes pomiformis Fabricius (1781), was constructed by suppression subtractive hybridization. A total of 541 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) were clustered and assembled into 102 contigs (31 multiple sequences and 71 singletons). In total, 37 cDNAs were found in the library via BLASTx searching and manual annotation. Eight contigs (337 ESTs) encoding short venom peptides (10 to 16 amino acids) occupied 62% of the library. The deduced amino acid sequence (78 amino acids) of a novel venom peptide transcript shared sequence similarity with trypsin inhibitors and dendrotoxin-like venom peptides known to be K(+) channel blockers, implying that this novel peptide may play a role in the paralysis of prey. In addition to phospholipase A2 and hyaluronidase, which are known to be the main components of wasp venoms, several transcripts encoding enzymes, including three metallopeptidases and a decarboxylase likely involved in the processing and activation of venomous proteins, peptides, amines, and neurotransmitters, were also isolated from the library. The presence of a transcript encoding a putative insulin/insulin-like peptide binding protein suggests that solitary hunting wasps use their venom to control their prey, leading to larval growth cessation. The abundance of these venom components in the venom gland/sac and in the alimentary canal was confirmed by quantitative real-time PCR. Discovery of venom gland/sac-specific transcripts should promote further studies on biologically active components in the venom of solitary hunting wasps.

  13. Immunological assessment of mice hyperimmunized with native and Cobalt-60-irradiated Bothrops venoms

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    R. S. Ferreira Junior

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available ELISA was used to evaluate, accompany, and compare the humoral immune response of Swiss mice during hyperimmunization with native and Cobalt-60-irradiated (60Co venoms of Bothrops jararaca, Bothrops jararacussu and Bothrops moojeni. Potency and neutralization were evaluated by in vitro challenges. After hyperimmunization, immunity was observed by in vivo challenge, and the side effects were assessed. The animals immunization with one LD50 of each venom occurred on days 1, 15, 21, 30, and 45, when blood samples were collected; challenges happened on the 60th day. Results showed that ELISA was efficient in evaluating, accompanying and comparing mouse immune response during hyperimmunization. Serum titers produced with natural venom were similar to those produced with irradiated venom. Immunogenic capacity was maintained after 60Co-irradiation. The sera produced with native venom showed neutralizing potency and capacity similar to those of the sera produced with irradiated venom. All antibodies were able to neutralize five LD50 from these venoms. Clinical alterations were minimum during hyperimmunization with irradiated venom, however, necrosis and death occurred in animals inoculated with native venom.

  14. Venoms of Heteropteran Insects: A Treasure Trove of Diverse Pharmacological Toolkits

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    Andrew A. Walker

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The piercing-sucking mouthparts of the true bugs (Insecta: Hemiptera: Heteroptera have allowed diversification from a plant-feeding ancestor into a wide range of trophic strategies that include predation and blood-feeding. Crucial to the success of each of these strategies is the injection of venom. Here we review the current state of knowledge with regard to heteropteran venoms. Predaceous species produce venoms that induce rapid paralysis and liquefaction. These venoms are powerfully insecticidal, and may cause paralysis or death when injected into vertebrates. Disulfide-rich peptides, bioactive phospholipids, small molecules such as N,N-dimethylaniline and 1,2,5-trithiepane, and toxic enzymes such as phospholipase A2, have been reported in predatory venoms. However, the detailed composition and molecular targets of predatory venoms are largely unknown. In contrast, recent research into blood-feeding heteropterans has revealed the structure and function of many protein and non-protein components that facilitate acquisition of blood meals. Blood-feeding venoms lack paralytic or liquefying activity but instead are cocktails of pharmacological modulators that disable the host haemostatic systems simultaneously at multiple points. The multiple ways venom is used by heteropterans suggests that further study will reveal heteropteran venom components with a wide range of bioactivities that may be recruited for use as bioinsecticides, human therapeutics, and pharmacological tools.

  15. Venoms of Heteropteran Insects: A Treasure Trove of Diverse Pharmacological Toolkits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Andrew A; Weirauch, Christiane; Fry, Bryan G; King, Glenn F

    2016-02-12

    The piercing-sucking mouthparts of the true bugs (Insecta: Hemiptera: Heteroptera) have allowed diversification from a plant-feeding ancestor into a wide range of trophic strategies that include predation and blood-feeding. Crucial to the success of each of these strategies is the injection of venom. Here we review the current state of knowledge with regard to heteropteran venoms. Predaceous species produce venoms that induce rapid paralysis and liquefaction. These venoms are powerfully insecticidal, and may cause paralysis or death when injected into vertebrates. Disulfide-rich peptides, bioactive phospholipids, small molecules such as N,N-dimethylaniline and 1,2,5-trithiepane, and toxic enzymes such as phospholipase A2, have been reported in predatory venoms. However, the detailed composition and molecular targets of predatory venoms are largely unknown. In contrast, recent research into blood-feeding heteropterans has revealed the structure and function of many protein and non-protein components that facilitate acquisition of blood meals. Blood-feeding venoms lack paralytic or liquefying activity but instead are cocktails of pharmacological modulators that disable the host haemostatic systems simultaneously at multiple points. The multiple ways venom is used by heteropterans suggests that further study will reveal heteropteran venom components with a wide range of bioactivities that may be recruited for use as bioinsecticides, human therapeutics, and pharmacological tools.

  16. Biological and Enzymatic Characterization of Proteases from Crude Venom of the Ant Odontomachus bauri

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    Mariana Ferreira Silva

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Hymenoptera venoms constitute an interesting source of natural toxins that may lead to the development of novel therapeutic agents. The present study investigated the enzymatic and biological characteristics of the crude venom of the ant Odontomachus bauri. Its crude venom presents several protein bands, with higher staining for six proteins with gelatinolytic activity (17, 20, 26, 29, 43 and 48 kDa. The crude venom showed high proteolytic activity on azocasein at optimal pH 8.0 and 37 °C. In the presence of protease inhibitors as aprotinin, leupeptin and EDTA, the azocaseinolytic activity was reduced by 45%, 29% and 9%, respectively, suggesting that the enzymes present in the crude venom belong to the three classes of proteases, with the serine proteases in greater intensity. The crude venom degraded the fibrinogen α-chain faster than the β-chain, while the fibrinogen γ-chain remained unchanged. In biological assays, O. bauri venom showed hemolytic and coagulant activity in vitro, and defibrinating activity in vivo. In addition, the venom showed antimicrobial activity against Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli as well as antiparasitic activity on Toxoplasma gondii infection in vitro. In that sense, this study sheds perspectives for pharmacological applications of O. bauri venom enzymes.

  17. Biological and Enzymatic Characterization of Proteases from Crude Venom of the Ant Odontomachus bauri.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, Mariana Ferreira; Mota, Caroline Martins; Miranda, Vanessa dos Santos; Cunha, Amanda de Oliveira; Silva, Maraísa Cristina; Naves, Karinne Spirandelli Carvalho; de Oliveira, Fábio; Silva, Deise Aparecida de Oliveira; Mineo, Tiago Wilson Patriarca; Santiago, Fernanda Maria

    2015-11-30

    Hymenoptera venoms constitute an interesting source of natural toxins that may lead to the development of novel therapeutic agents. The present study investigated the enzymatic and biological characteristics of the crude venom of the ant Odontomachus bauri. Its crude venom presents several protein bands, with higher staining for six proteins with gelatinolytic activity (17, 20, 26, 29, 43 and 48 kDa). The crude venom showed high proteolytic activity on azocasein at optimal pH 8.0 and 37 °C. In the presence of protease inhibitors as aprotinin, leupeptin and EDTA, the azocaseinolytic activity was reduced by 45%, 29% and 9%, respectively, suggesting that the enzymes present in the crude venom belong to the three classes of proteases, with the serine proteases in greater intensity. The crude venom degraded the fibrinogen α-chain faster than the β-chain, while the fibrinogen γ-chain remained unchanged. In biological assays, O. bauri venom showed hemolytic and coagulant activity in vitro, and defibrinating activity in vivo. In addition, the venom showed antimicrobial activity against Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli as well as antiparasitic activity on Toxoplasma gondii infection in vitro. In that sense, this study sheds perspectives for pharmacological applications of O. bauri venom enzymes.

  18. Biochemical and hematological study of goats envenomed with natural and 60Co-irradiated bothropic venom

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lucas de Oliveira, P.C.; Madruga, R.A.; Barbosa, N.P.U. [Uberaba School of Veterinary Medicine (UNIUBE), MG (Brazil)]. E-mail: pedrolucaso@uol.com.br; Sakate, M. [UNESP, Botucatu, SP (Brazil). School of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Husbandry

    2007-07-01

    Venoms from snakes of the Bothrops genus are proteolytic, coagulant, hemorrhagic and nephrotoxic, causing edema, necrosis, hemorrhage and intense pain at the bite site, besides systemic alterations. Many adjuvants have been added to the venom used in the sensitization of antiserum-producer animals to increase antigenic induction and reduce the envenomation pathological effects. Gamma radiation from {sup 60}Co has been used as an attenuating agent of the venoms toxic properties. The main objective was to study, comparatively, clinical and laboratory aspects of goats inoculated with bothropic (Bothrops jararaca) venom, natural and irradiated from a {sup 60}Co source. Twelve goats were divided into two groups of six animals: GINV, inoculated with 0.5 mg/kg of natural venom; and GIIV, inoculated with 0.5 mg/kg of irradiated venom. Blood samples were collected immediately before and one, two, seven, and thirty days after venom injection. Local lesions were daily evaluated. The following exams were carried out: blood tests; biochemical tests of urea, creatinine, creatine kinase, aspartate amino-transferase and alanine amino-transferase; clotting time; platelets count; and total serum immunoglobulin measurement. In the conditions of the present experiment, irradiated venom was less aggressive and more immunogenic than natural venom. (author)

  19. Biochemical and hematological study of goats envenomed with natural and 60Co-irradiated bothropic venom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. C. Lucas de Oliveira

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Venoms from snakes of the Bothrops genus are proteolytic, coagulant, hemorrhagic and nephrotoxic, causing edema, necrosis, hemorrhage and intense pain at the bite site, besides systemic alterations. Many adjuvants have been added to the venom used in the sensitization of antiserum-producer animals to increase antigenic induction and reduce the envenomation pathological effects. Gamma radiation from 60Co has been used as an attenuating agent of the venoms toxic properties. The main objective was to study, comparatively, clinical and laboratory aspects of goats inoculated with bothropic (Bothrops jararaca venom, natural and irradiated from a 60Co source. Twelve goats were divided into two groups of six animals: GINV, inoculated with 0.5mg/kg of natural venom; and GIIV, inoculated with 0.5mg/kg of irradiated venom. Blood samples were collected immediately before and one, two, seven, and thirty days after venom injection. Local lesions were daily evaluated. The following exams were carried out: blood tests; biochemical tests of urea, creatinine, creatine kinase (CK, aspartate amino-transferase (AST and alanine amino-transferase (ALT; clotting time; platelets count; and total serum immunoglobulin measurement. In the conditions of the present experiment, irradiated venom was less aggressive and more immunogenic than natural venom.

  20. Defensins and the convergent evolution of platypus and reptile venom genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-04-01

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

  2. A Study on the Effects of Bee Venom Aqua-Acupuncture on Writhing Reflex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeong Sun-Hee

    2000-07-01

    Full Text Available Introduction:In spite of the use of Bee Venom aqua-acupuncture in the clinics, the scientific evaluation on effects is not enough. Bee Venom aqua-acupuncture is used according to the stimulation of acupuncture point and the chemical effects of Bee Venom. The aims of this study is to investigate the analgegic effects of the Bee Venom aqua-acupuncture, through the change of writhing reflex Materials and Methods:Pain animal model was used acetic acid method. The changes of writhing reflex of the mice which were derived pain by injecting acetic acid into the abdomen, after stimulating Bee Venom aqua-acupuncture on Chungwan(CV12 and non acupuncture point on the backside were measured. Results:1. It showed that the writhing reflex were appeared on the groups which injected acetic acid only, and saline-acetic acid group(sample I, but not on the group bee venom-saline group(sample II. 2. The change of writhing reflex by Chungwan(CV12 Bee Venom aqua-acupuncture showed significant decrease in the order of Chungwan(CV12 Bee Venom aqua-acupuncture group III(2.5×10-3g/kg, II(2.5×10-4g/kg, and I(2.5×10-5g/kg, compared with control group. There were significant decrease of number of writhing reflex in 5~10, 10~15 and 15~20 minutes intervals of Chung wan(CV12 Bee Venom aqua-acupuncture group I, and in 0~5, 5~10, 10~15 and 15~20 minutes intervals of II and III, compared with control group. 3. The change of writhing reflex by non acupuncture point Bee Venom aqua-acupuncture showed significant decrease in the 0~5 and 5~10 minutes intervals and the total number of writhing reflex in 2.5×10-4g/kg group, compared with control group 4. The effects of writhing reflex of Chungwan(CV12 Bee Venom aqua-acupuncture group showed significant decrease, compared with non acupuncture point Bee Venom aqua-acupuncture group. Conclusion:This study shows that the Bee Venom aqua-acupuncture on Chungwan(CV12 decreases the numbers of writhing reflex. As the

  3. Variations in Loxosceles spider venom composition and toxicity contribute to the severity of envenomation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Oliveira, Kátia C; Gonçalves de Andrade, Rute M; Piazza, Roxane M F; Ferreira, Jorge M C; van den Berg, C W; Tambourgi, Denise V

    2005-03-15

    Envenomation by Loxosceles spiders causes two main clinical manifestations: cutaneous and systemic loxoscelism. The factors contributing to the severity of loxoscelism are not fully understood. We have analysed biochemical and toxicity variations in venom of L. laeta and L. intermedia, with the aim to find a correlation with the seriousness of loxoscelism. Differences in expression of proteins, glycoproteins and sphingomyelinase activity were observed between venom from male and female spiders and between venom from the two species. These differences were reflected in the toxicity of the venoms including the capacity to induce complement-dependent haemolysis, dermonecrosis and lethality. Comparative analysis of gender and species, showed that these biological activities were more prominent in venom from female spiders, especially from L. laeta. Antiserum raised against venom from females L. laeta spiders had the highest efficacy in neutralizing venoms of males and females of both species. These results indicate that the severity of loxoscelism depends, at least partially, on the species and sex of the spider and suggest that for accidents involving L. laeta an specific serum therapy is necessary. Furthermore, it emphasizes the efficacy of the antiserum produced against L. laeta female venom in neutralizing Loxosceles venoms from different species and gender.

  4. Characterization of Three Venom Peptides from the Spitting Spider Scytodes thoracica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ariki, Nathanial K.; Muñoz, Lisa E.; Armitage, Elizabeth L.; Goodstein, Francesca R.; George, Kathryn G.; Smith, Vanessa L.; Vetter, Irina; Herzig, Volker; King, Glenn F.; Loening, Nikolaus M.

    2016-01-01

    We present the solution-state NMR structures and preliminary functional characterizations of three venom peptides identified from the spitting spider Scytodes thoracica. Despite little sequence identity to other venom peptides, structural characterization reveals that these peptides contain an inhibitor cystine knot motif common to many venom peptides. These are the first structures for any peptide or protein from spiders of the Scytodidae family. Many venom peptides target neuronal ion channels or receptors. However, we have not been able to determine the target of these Scytodes peptides so we can only state with certainty the channels and receptors that they do not target. PMID:27227898

  5. Inflammatory mediators generated at the site of inoculation of Loxosceles gaucho spider venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbaro, Katia C; Lira, Marcela S; Araújo, Claudia A; Pareja-Santos, Alessandra; Távora, Bianca C L F; Prezotto-Neto, José Pedro; Kimura, Louise F; Lima, Carla; Lopes-Ferreira, Mônica; Santoro, Marcelo L

    2010-11-01

    Patients bitten by Loxosceles spiders generally manifest marked local inflammatory reaction and dermonecrosis. This report evaluated edema formation, leukocyte infiltration and release of inflammatory mediators at the injection site of Loxosceles gaucho venom. BALB/c mice were i.d. injected with venom and thereafter paws were disrupted and homogenized to obtain differential counts of migrated cells, as well to assay the levels of cytokines, chemokines and lipid mediators. Increased footpad thickness was detected as soon as 30 min after venom injection, and 24h later was similar to that of the control group. Loxosceles venom mildly augmented the recruitment of leukocytes to the footpad in comparison with PBS-injected mice. Moreover, it stimulated the release of IL-6, MCP-1 and KC at 2 and 24h after venom injection. In addition, higher levels of PGE(2) were detected 30 min after venom injection in comparison with control group. However, the venom failed to increase levels of IL-1 beta, TNF-alpha, TXB(2) and LTB(4). Our results demonstrate that L. gaucho venom evokes an early complex inflammatory reaction, stimulating the secretion of pro-inflammatory cytokines and lipid mediators (PGE(2)), and recruiting leukocytes to the footpad which contribute to the local reaction induced by L. gaucho venom.

  6. Characterization of Three Venom Peptides from the Spitting Spider Scytodes thoracica.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nathanial K Ariki

    Full Text Available We present the solution-state NMR structures and preliminary functional characterizations of three venom peptides identified from the spitting spider Scytodes thoracica. Despite little sequence identity to other venom peptides, structural characterization reveals that these peptides contain an inhibitor cystine knot motif common to many venom peptides. These are the first structures for any peptide or protein from spiders of the Scytodidae family. Many venom peptides target neuronal ion channels or receptors. However, we have not been able to determine the target of these Scytodes peptides so we can only state with certainty the channels and receptors that they do not target.

  7. Biological and Pathological Studies of Rosmarinic Acid as an Inhibitor of Hemorrhagic Trimeresurus flavoviridis (habu Venom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masatake Niwa

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available In our previous report, rosmarinic acid (RA was revealed to be an antidote active compound in Argusia argentea (family: Boraginaceae. The plant is locally used in Okinawa in Japan as an antidote for poisoning from snake venom, Trimeresurus flavoviridis (habu. This article presents mechanistic evidence of RA’s neutralization of the hemorrhagic effects of snake venom. Anti-hemorrhagic activity was assayed by using several kinds of snake venom. Inhibition against fibrinogen hydrolytic and collagen hydrolytic activities of T. flavoviridis venom were examined by SDS-PAGE. A histopathological study was done by microscopy after administration of venom in the presence or absence of RA. RA was found to markedly neutralize venom-induced hemorrhage, fibrinogenolysis, cytotoxicity and digestion of type IV collagen activity. Moreover, RA inhibited both hemorrhage and neutrophil infiltrations caused by T. flavoviridis venom in pathology sections. These results demonstrate that RA inhibited most of the hemorrhage effects of venom. These findings indicate that rosmarinic acid can be expected to provide therapeutic benefits in neutralization of snake venom accompanied by heat stability.

  8. Insects as biological models to assay spider and scorpion venom toxicity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. F. Manzoli-Palma

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available This study was undertaken to develop an experimental protocol using insects as biological models to assay venom toxicity of the following spiders Loxosceles gaucho, Phoneutria nigriventer, Nephilengys cruentata and Tityus serrulatus scorpion. Three different insect species were bioassayed: Apis mellifera (Hymenoptera, Grillus assimilis (Orthoptera, and Diatraea saccharalis (Lepidoptera. Venoms were injected into the hemocele of insects with a microsyringe at concentrations that caused dose/weight-dependent effects; doses causing either paralysis (ED50 or death (LD50 were recorded for each venom and insect test-species. T. serrulatus and L. gaucho venoms were lethal to all tested species, while P. nigriventer venom caused paralysis and death, and N. cruentata venom caused only paralysis at the doses assayed. A comparison between the insect test species described above revealed that A. mellifera was highly sensitive to all venoms tested; even a tiny amount of N. cruentata non-lethal venom caused a change in the walking pattern leading to transient paralysis. D. saccharalis larvae were very resistant to all four venoms.

  9. A New Arthropod, Guangweicaris Luo, Fu et Hu gen. nov.from the Early Cambrian Guanshan Fauna, Kunming, China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LUO Huilin; FU Xiaoping; HU Shixue; LI Yong; HOU Shuguang; YOU Ting; PANG Jiyuan; LIU Qi

    2007-01-01

    The Guanshan Fauna is a soft-bodied fauna dominated by arthropods (including trilobites,trilobitoides, Tuzoia, Isoxys, and bradorids) in association with priapulids, brachiopods,anomalocaridids, vetulicoliids, sponges, chancellorids, and echinoderms. This paper reports and describes a new arthropod from the yellowish green mudstone at the lower part of the Wulongqing Formation, Canglangpuan Stage, Lower Cambrian in Kunming, Yunnan, China. The stratigraphic and geographic distribution, classification, fossil preservation, life style of this new arthropod and comparisons with other fossil arthropods are also discussed in details. The discovery and research of the non-mineralized arthropod, Guangweicaris Luo, Fu et Hu gen. nov. from the Guanshan Fauna adds new members to the taxonomic list and provides new information to the evolution of early arthropods.Furthermore, this study would shed new light into the "Cambrian Explosion" and the evolution of early life.

  10. Anti-scorpion venom activity of Andrographis paniculata: A combined and comparative study with anti-scorpion serum in mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ranjana S Kale

    2013-01-01

    Conclusions: Present study demonstrates that, both plant extract and ASV have their own scorpion venom neutralising ability in vivo and in vitro, but their combination is most effective in venom neutralizing ability.

  11. The first myriapod genome sequence reveals conservative arthropod gene content and genome organisation in the centipede Strigamia maritima.

    OpenAIRE

    2014-01-01

    Myriapods (e.g., centipedes and millipedes) display a simple homonomous body plan relative to other arthropods. All members of the class are terrestrial, but they attained terrestriality independently of insects. Myriapoda is the only arthropod class not represented by a sequenced genome. We present an analysis of the genome of the centipede Strigamia maritima. It retains a compact genome that has undergone less gene loss and shuffling than previously sequenced arthropods, and many orthologue...

  12. The first myriapod genome sequence reveals conservative arthropod gene content and genome organisation in the centipede strigamia maritima

    OpenAIRE

    2014-01-01

    Myriapods (e.g., centipedes and millipedes) display a simple homonomous body plan relative to other arthropods. All members of the class are terrestrial, but they attained terrestriality independently of insects. Myriapoda is the only arthropod class not represented by a sequenced genome. We present an analysis of the genome of the centipede Strigamia maritima. It retains a compact genome that has undergone less gene loss and shuffling than previously sequenced arthropods, and many orthologue...

  13. The First Myriapod Genome Sequence Reveals Conservative Arthropod Gene Content and Genome Organisation in the Centipede Strigamia maritima

    OpenAIRE

    2014-01-01

    Myriapods (e.g., centipedes and millipedes) display a simple homonomous body plan relative to other arthropods. All members of the class are terrestrial, but they attained terrestriality independently of insects. Myriapoda is the only arthropod class not represented by a sequenced genome. We present an analysis of the genome of the centipede Strigamia maritima. It retains a compact genome that has undergone less gene loss and shuffling than previously sequenced arthropods, and many orthologue...

  14. Large-scale experimental landscapes reveal distinctive effects of patch shape and connectivity on arthropod communities.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Orrock, John, L.; Curler, Gregory, R.; Danielson, Brent, J.; Coyle, David. R.

    2011-09-14

    The size, shape, and isolation of habitat patches can affect organism behavior and population dynamics, but little is known about the relative role of shape and connectivity in affecting ecological communities at large spatial scales. Using six sampling sessions from July 2001 until August 2002, we collected 33,685 arthropods throughout seven 12-ha experimental landscapes consisting of clear-cut patches surrounded by a matrix of mature pine forest. Patches were explicitly designed to manipulate connectivity (via habitat corridors) independently of area and edge effects. We found that patch shape, rather than connectivity, affected ground-dwelling arthropod richness and beta diversity (i.e. turnover of genera among patches). Arthropod communities contained fewer genera and exhibited less turnover in high-edge connected and high-edge unconnected patches relative to low-edge unconnected patches of similar area. Connectivity, rather than patch shape, affected the evenness of ground-dwelling arthropod communities; regardless of patch shape, high-edge connected patches had lower evenness than low- or high-edge unconnected patches. Among the most abundant arthropod orders, increased richness in low-edge unconnected patches was largely due to increased richness of Coleoptera, whereas Hymenoptera played an important role in the lower evenness in connected patches and patterns of turnover. These findings suggest that anthropogenic habitat alteration can have distinct effects on ground-dwelling arthropod communities that arise due to changes in shape and connectivity. Moreover, this work suggests that corridors, which are common conservation tools that change both patch shape and connectivity, can have multiple effects on arthropod communities via different mechanisms, and each effect may alter components of community structure.

  15. Reconstructing the phylogeny of 21 completely sequenced arthropod species based on their motor proteins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kollmar Martin

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Motor proteins have extensively been studied in the past and consist of large superfamilies. They are involved in diverse processes like cell division, cellular transport, neuronal transport processes, or muscle contraction, to name a few. Vertebrates contain up to 60 myosins and about the same number of kinesins that are spread over more than a dozen distinct classes. Results Here, we present the comparative genomic analysis of the motor protein repertoire of 21 completely sequenced arthropod species using the owl limpet Lottia gigantea as outgroup. Arthropods contain up to 17 myosins grouped into 13 classes. The myosins are in almost all cases clear paralogs, and thus the evolution of the arthropod myosin inventory is mainly determined by gene losses. Arthropod species contain up to 29 kinesins spread over 13 classes. In contrast to the myosins, the evolution of the arthropod kinesin inventory is not only determined by gene losses but also by many subtaxon-specific and species-specific gene duplications. All arthropods contain each of the subunits of the cytoplasmic dynein/dynactin complex. Except for the dynein light chains and the p150 dynactin subunit they contain single gene copies of the other subunits. Especially the roadblock light chain repertoire is very species-specific. Conclusion All 21 completely sequenced arthropods, including the twelve sequenced Drosophila species, contain a species-specific set of motor proteins. The phylogenetic analysis of all genes as well as the protein repertoire placed Daphnia pulex closest to the root of the Arthropoda. The louse Pediculus humanus corporis is the closest relative to Daphnia followed by the group of the honeybee Apis mellifera and the jewel wasp Nasonia vitripennis. After this group the rust-red flour beetle Tribolium castaneum and the silkworm Bombyx mori diverged very closely from the lineage leading to the Drosophila species.

  16. Phylogeny and life habits of Early Arthropods-Predation in the Early Cambrian Sea

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Andreas MAAS; Dieter WALOSZEK; CHEN Junyuan; Andreas BRAUN; WANG Xiuqiang; HUANG Diying

    2004-01-01

    We investigated two new arthropods from the Maotianshan-Shale fauna of southern China in the course of our research on life strategies, particularly predation, in Early Cambrian marine macrofaunal biota. One form clearly belongs to the so-called "great-appendage" arthropods, animals that were, most likely, active predators catching prey with their first pair of large, specialized frontoventral appendages. Based on this, we hypothesize that the new species and many others, if not all, of the "great-appendage" arthropods were derivatives of the chelicerate stem lineage and not forms having branched off at different nodes along the evolutionary lineage of the Arthropoda. Rather, we consider the "great-appendage" arthropods as belonging to a monophyletic clade, which modified autapomorphically their first pair of appendages (antennae in general arthropod terminology) into raptorial organs for food capture. The second new form resembles another Maotianshan-Shale arthropod, Fuxianhuia protensa, in sharing a head made of only two separate segments, a small segment bearing oval eyes laterally, and another bearing a large tergite, which forms a wide shield freely overhanging the subsequent narrow trunk segments. This segment bears a single pair of rather short anteriorly directed uniramous appendages, considered as the "still" limb-shaped antennae. Particularly the evolutionary status of head and limbs of these two forms suggests that both are representatives of the early part of the stem lineage toward the crown-group of Arthropoda, the Euarthropoda. These forms appear rather unspecialized, but may have been but simple predators. This adds to our hypothesis that predation was a common, if not dominant feeding strategy in the Cambrian, at least for arthropods.

  17. Habitat and species identity, not diversity, predict the extent of refuse consumption by urban arthropods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Youngsteadt, Elsa; Henderson, Ryanna C; Savage, Amy M; Ernst, Andrew F; Dunn, Robert R; Frank, Steven D

    2015-03-01

    Urban green spaces provide ecosystem services to city residents, but their management is hindered by a poor understanding of their ecology. We examined a novel ecosystem service relevant to urban public health and esthetics: the consumption of littered food waste by arthropods. Theory and data from natural systems suggest that the magnitude and resilience of this service should increase with biological diversity. We measured food removal by presenting known quantities of cookies, potato chips, and hot dogs in street medians (24 sites) and parks (21 sites) in New York City, USA. At the same sites, we assessed ground-arthropod diversity and abiotic conditions, including history of flooding during Hurricane Sandy 7 months prior to the study. Arthropod diversity was greater in parks (on average 11 hexapod families and 4.7 ant species per site), than in medians (nine hexapod families and 2.7 ant species per site). However, counter to our diversity-based prediction, arthropods in medians removed 2-3 times more food per day than did those in parks. We detected no effect of flooding (at 19 sites) on this service. Instead, greater food removal was associated with the presence of the introduced pavement ant (Tetramorium sp. E) and with hotter, drier conditions that may have increased arthropod metabolism. When vertebrates also had access to food, more was removed, indicating that arthropods and vertebrates compete for littered food. We estimate that arthropods alone could remove 4-6.5 kg of food per year in a single street median, reducing its availability to less desirable fauna such as rats. Our results suggest that species identity and habitat may be more relevant than diversity for predicting urban ecosystem services. Even small green spaces such as street medians provide ecosystem services that may complement those of larger habitat patches across the urban landscape.

  18. Firing the Sting: Chemically Induced Discharge of Cnidae Reveals Novel Proteins and Peptides from Box Jellyfish (Chironex fleckeri) Venom

    OpenAIRE

    2015-01-01

    Cnidarian venom research has lagged behind other toxinological fields due to technical difficulties in recovery of the complex venom from the microscopic nematocysts. Here we report a newly developed rapid, repeatable and cost effective technique of venom preparation, using ethanol to induce nematocyst discharge and to recover venom contents in one step. Our model species was the Australian box jellyfish (Chironex fleckeri), which has a notable impact on public health. By utilizing scanning e...

  19. Cubozoan Venom-Induced Cardiovascular Collapse Is Caused by Hyperkalemia and Prevented by Zinc Gluconate in Mice

    OpenAIRE

    2012-01-01

    Chironex fleckeri (Australian box jellyfish) stings can cause acute cardiovascular collapse and death. We developed methods to recover venom with high specific activity, and evaluated the effects of both total venom and constituent porins at doses equivalent to lethal envenomation. Marked potassium release occurred within 5 min and hemolysis within 20 min in human red blood cells (RBC) exposed to venom or purified venom porin. Electron microscopy revealed abundant ~12-nm transmembrane pores i...

  20. The Effects of a Chactoid Scorpion Venom and Its Purified Toxins on Rat Blood Pressure and Mast Cells Histamine Release

    OpenAIRE

    2013-01-01

    The effect of the venom of the Chactoid family of scorpions on blood pressure was scantly investigated and was addressed in the present study using the venom of the Israeli scorpion, Scorpio maurus palmatus. Blood pressure in rats was monitored via cannulated femoral artery, while venom and toxins were introduced into femoral vein. Venom injection elicited a biphasic effect, expressed first by a fast and transient hypotensive response, which lasted up to 10 min, followed by a hypertensive res...

  1. Evaluation of different glycoforms of honeybee venom major allergen phospholipase A2 (Api m 1) produced in insect cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Blank, Simon; Seismann, Henning; Plum, Melanie;

    2011-01-01

    Allergic reactions to hymenoptera stings are one of the major reasons for IgE-mediated anaphylaxis. However, proper diagnosis using venom extracts is severely affected by molecular cross-reactivity. In this study recombinant honeybee venom major allergen phospholipase A2 (Api m 1) was produced......-derived recombinant Api m 1 with defined CCD phenotypes might provide further insights into hymenoptera venom IgE reactivities and contribute to an improved diagnosis of hymenoptera venom allergy....

  2. Antiparasitic peptides from arthropods and their application in drug therapy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ariane Ferreira Lacerda

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Africa, Asia and Latin America are regions highly affected by endemic diseases, such as Leishmaniasis, Malaria and Chagas’ disease. They are responsible for the death of thousands of patients every year, as there is not yet a cure for them and the drugs used are inefficient against the pathogenic parasites. During the life cycle of some parasitic protozoa, insects become the most important host and disseminator of the diseases triggered by these microorganisms. As infected insects do not develop nocive symptoms, they can carry the parasites for long time inside their body, enabling their multiplication and life cycle completion. Eventually, parasites infect human beings after insects transmission through their saliva and/or feces. Hence, host insects and general arthropods, which developed a way to coexist with such parasites, are a promising source for the prospection of antiparasitic compounds, as alternative methods for the treatment of protozoa-related diseases. Among the molecules already isolated and investigated, there are proteins and peptides with high activity against parasites, able to inhibit parasite activity in different stages of development. Although studies are still taking their first steps, initial results show new perspectives on the treatment of parasitic diseases. Therefore, in this report, we describe about peptides from host insect sources with activity against the three most endemic parasites: Leishmania sp, Plasmodium sp. and Trypanosomes. Moreover, we discuss the future application insect peptides as anti-parasitic drugs and the use of non-hosts insect transcriptomes on the prospection of novel molecules for the treatment of parasitic neglected diseases.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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).

  4. Techniques applicable for purifying Chironex fleckeri (box-jellyfish) venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Othman, I; Burnett, J W

    1990-01-01

    A survey of several techniques to isolate a purified lethal factor from the tentacles of Chironex fleckeri was completed. Heterologous band patterns were obtained from specific eluates after gel filtration, ion exchange, immunoaffinity and hydrophobic chromatography. SDS-PAGE revealed a dense band at 24,000 mol. wt in many of these fractions. Isoelectric focusing of the crude venom resulted in considerable loss of activity but indicated significant purification in the fractions having a pI of 5.2-6.8. These fractions were also immunologically active against sera from a convalescing post-evenomation patient. The primary difficulties encountered in jellyfish venom purification are the lack of stability and the tendency of the active toxins to adhere to each other and to various support matrices.

  5. Scorpion venom peptides with no disulfide bridges: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almaaytah, Ammar; Albalas, Qosay

    2014-01-01

    Scorpion venoms are rich sources of biologically active peptides that are classified into disulfide-bridged peptides (DBPs) and non-disulfide-bridged peptides (NDBPs). DBPs are the main scorpion venom components responsible for the neurotoxic effects observed during scorpion envenomation as they usually target membrane bound ion channels of excitable and non-excitable cells. Several hundred DBPs have been identified and functionally characterized in the past two decades. The NDBPs represent a novel group of molecules that have gained great interest only recently due to their high diversity both in their primary structures and bioactivities. This review provides an overview of scorpion NDBPs focusing on their therapeutic applications, modes of discovery, mechanisms of NDBPs genetic diversity and structural properties. It also provides a simple classification for NDBPs that could be adopted and applied to other NDBPs identified in future studies.

  6. Electrophysiological Characterization of the Antarease Metalloprotease from Tityus serrulatus Venom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zornetta, Irene; Scorzeto, Michele; Mendes Dos Reis, Pablo Victor; De Lima, Maria E.; Montecucco, Cesare; Megighian, Aram; Rossetto, Ornella

    2017-01-01

    Scorpions are among the oldest venomous living organisms and the family Buthidae is the largest and most medically relevant one. Scorpion venoms include many toxic peptides, but recently, a metalloprotease from Tityus serrulatus called antarease was reported to be capable of cleaving VAMP2, a protein involved in the neuroparalytic syndromes of tetanus and botulism. We have produced antarease and an inactive metalloprotease mutant in a recombinant form and analyzed their enzymatic activity on recombinant VAMP2 in vitro and on mammalian and insect neuromuscular junction. The purified recombinant antarease paralyzed the neuromuscular junctions of mice and of Drosophila melanogaster whilst the mutant was inactive. We were unable to demonstrate any cleavage of VAMP2 under conditions which leads to VAMP proteolysis by botulinum neurotoxin type B. Antarease caused a reduced release probability, mainly due to defects upstream of the synaptic vesicles fusion process. Paired pulse experiments indicate that antarease might proteolytically inactivate a voltage-gated calcium channel. PMID:28264432

  7. Antitumoral Potential of Tunisian Snake Venoms Secreted Phospholipases A2

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raoudha Zouari-Kessentini

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Phospholipases type A2 (PLA2s are the most abundant proteins found in Viperidae snake venom. They are quite fascinating from both a biological and structural point of view. Despite similarity in their structures and common catalytic properties, they exhibit a wide spectrum of pharmacological activities. Besides being hydrolases, secreted phospholipases A2 (sPLA2 are an important group of toxins, whose action at the molecular level is still a matter of debate. These proteins can display toxic effects by different mechanisms. In addition to neurotoxicity, myotoxicity, hemolytic activity, antibacterial, anticoagulant, and antiplatelet effects, some venom PLA2s show antitumor and antiangiogenic activities by mechanisms independent of their enzymatic activity. This paper aims to discuss original finding against anti-tumor and anti-angiogenic activities of sPLA2 isolated from Tunisian vipers: Cerastes cerastes and Macrovipera lebetina, representing new tools to target specific integrins, mainly, and integrins.

  8. Evaluation of the effect of gamma rays on the venom of Vipera lebetina by biochemical study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bennacef-Heffar, N.; Laraba-Djebari, F. [USTHB Bab Ezzouar, Lab. de Biologie Cellulaire et Moleculaire, Faculte des Sciences Biologiques, Alger (Algeria)]. E-mail: flaraba@ibnsina.ands.dz

    2003-12-01

    Snake bites represent a serious public health problem in many areas of the world. In Algeria, two widespread snakes are Vipera lebetina and Cerastes cerastes. Vipera lebetina venom causes local hemorrhage and necrosis, and it may lead to permanent limb loss. The principal causes of mortality after snakebites are acute renal failure and hemorrhage, which occur not only locally, at the site of the bite, but also systemically, contributing to the cardiovascular shock characteristic of severe envenomation. Gamma radiation has been shown to be effective for attenuating venom toxicity. Vipera lebetina venom was irradiated with two doses of gamma rays (1 and 2 kGy) from a {sup 60}Co source, and the venom's toxic, enzymatic, and structural properties were analyzed. Intraperitoneal injection of the irradiated venoms (100-500 {mu}g/20 g mouse body mass) revealed a significant decrease of the toxicity. Irradiated venoms with 1 and 2 kGy doses were four and nine times less toxic, respectively, than the native venom. A biochemical characterization of in vitro enzymatic activities was performed. Vipera lebetina displayed in vitro caseinolytic, amidolytic, esterasic, coagulant, and phospholipase A{sub 2} activities. Caseinolytic, amidolytic, esterasic, and coagulative activities were reduced for the irradiated venoms; only phospholipase A{sub 2} activity was abolished in the irradiated venom with a dose of 2 kGy. The native and irradiated venoms were separated by gel filtration and electrophoresis. Chromatographic and electrophoretic profiles were drastically changed as compared with the native venom. Vipera lebetina venom detoxified by gamma rays was used for active immunization, and the presence of antibody in the immune sera was detected by ELISA. The immunogenic properties were preserved and the antisera obtained with the irradiated venoms could cross-react. Antisera were able to neutralize the toxic effect of V. lebetina native venom. These results indicate that

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  10. 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.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  11. Inhibitory and enzyme-kinetic investigation of chelerythrine and lupeol isolated from Zanthoxylum rhoifolium against krait snake venom acetylcholinesterase

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ahmad, Mustaq, E-mail: mushtaq213@yahoo.com [University of Science and Technology, Bannu, (Pakistan). Department of Biotechnology; Weber, Andrea D.; Zanon, Graciane; Tavares, Luciana de C.; Ilha, Vinicius; Dalcol, Ionara I.; Morel, Ademir F., E-mail: ademirfariasm@gmail.com [Universidade Federal de Santa Maria, RS (Brazil). Dept. de Quimica

    2014-01-15

    The in vitro activity of chelerythrine and lupeol, two metabolites isolated from Zanthoxylum rhoifolium were studied against the venom of the snake Bungarus sindanus (Elapidae). The venom, which is highly toxic to humans, consists mainly by the enzyme acetylcholinesterase (AChE). Both compounds showed activity against the venom, and the alkaloid chelerythrine presented higher activity than did triterpene lupeol. (author)

  12. Elucidation of the molecular envenomation strategy of the cone snail Conus geographus through transcriptome sequencing of its venom duct

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    Hu Hao

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The fish-hunting cone snail, Conus geographus, is the deadliest snail on earth. In the absence of medical intervention, 70% of human stinging cases are fatal. Although, its venom is known to consist of a cocktail of small peptides targeting different ion-channels and receptors, the bulk of its venom constituents, their sites of manufacture, relative abundances and how they function collectively in envenomation has remained unknown. Results We have used transcriptome sequencing to systematically elucidate the contents the C. geographus venom duct, dividing it into four segments in order to investigate each segment’s mRNA contents. Three different types of calcium channel (each targeted by unrelated, entirely distinct venom peptides and at least two different nicotinic receptors appear to be targeted by the venom. Moreover, the most highly expressed venom component is not paralytic, but causes sensory disorientation and is expressed in a different segment of the venom duct from venoms believed to cause sensory disruption. We have also identified several new toxins of interest for pharmaceutical and neuroscience research. Conclusions Conus geographus is believed to prey on fish hiding in reef crevices at night. Our data suggest that disorientation of prey is central to its envenomation strategy. Furthermore, venom expression profiles also suggest a sophisticated layering of venom-expression patterns within the venom duct, with disorientating and paralytic venoms expressed in different regions. Thus, our transcriptome analysis provides a new physiological framework for understanding the molecular envenomation strategy of this deadly snail.

  13. PHARMACOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF SNAKE VENOM L- AMINO ACID OXIDASES

    OpenAIRE

    Joseph Baby; Rajan Sheeja S; M.V Jeevitha; S.U Ajisha

    2011-01-01

    L-Amino acid oxidases are flavoenzymes which catalyze the stereospecific oxidative deamination of an L-amino acid substrate to a corresponding a-ketoacid with hydrogen peroxide and ammonia production. These enzymes, which are widely distributed in many different organisms, exhibit a marked affinity for hydrophobic amino acids, including phenylalanine, tryptophan, tyrosine, and leucine. Snake venom LAAO induces platelet aggregation and cytotoxicity in various cancer cell lines. The enzyme has ...

  14. Neuromuscular Activity of Micrurus laticollaris (Squamata: Elapidae Venom in Vitro

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    Alejandro Carbajal-Saucedo

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available In this work, we have examined the neuromuscular activity of Micrurus laticollaris (Mexican coral snake venom (MLV in vertebrate isolated nerve-muscle preparations. In chick biventer cervicis preparations, the MLV induced an irreversible concentration- and time-dependent (1–30 µg/mL neuromuscular blockade, with 50% blockade occurring between 8 and 30 min. Muscle contractures evoked by exogenous acetylcholine were completely abolished by MLV, whereas those of KCl were also significantly altered (86% ± 11%, 53% ± 11%, 89% ± 5% and 89% ± 7% for one, three, 10 and 30 µg of venom/mL, respectively; n = 4; p < 0.05. In mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm preparations, MLV (1–10 µg/mL promoted a slight increase in the amplitude of twitch-tension (3 µg/mL, followed by neuromuscular blockade (n = 4; the highest concentration caused complete inhibition of the twitches (time for 50% blockade = 26 ± 3 min, without exhibiting a previous neuromuscular facilitation. The venom (3 µg/mL induced a biphasic modulation in the frequency of miniature end-plate potentials (MEPPs/min, causing a significant increase after 15 min, followed by a decrease after 60 min (from 17 ± 1.4 (basal to 28 ± 2.5 (t15 and 12 ± 2 (t60. The membrane resting potential of mouse diaphragm preparations pre-exposed or not to d-tubocurarine (5 µg/mL was also significantly less negative with MLV (10 µg/mL. Together, these results indicate that M. laticollaris venom induces neuromuscular blockade by a combination of pre- and post-synaptic activities.

  15. Scorpion venoms: taking the sting out of lung disease.

    OpenAIRE

    1996-01-01

    Scorpion venoms contain specific toxins which block large conductance calcium-activated potassium (BKCa) channels. Use of these toxins has shown that a significant proportion of the action of bronchodilators such as beta-agonists, theophylline, and nitric oxide occurs as a result of the opening of BKCa channels. Similarly, these toxins have shown that inhibitors of airway neurotransmission also operate via BKCa channels. Drugs that open BKCa channels may be alternative bronchodilators (possib...

  16. Radioprotection: mechanism and radioprotective agents including honeybee venom

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Varanda, E.A.; Tavares, D.C. [UNESP, Araraquara, SP (Brazil). Escola de Ciencias Farmaceuticas. Dept. de Ciencias Biologicas

    1998-07-01

    Since 1949, a great deal of research has been carried on the radioprotective action of chemical substances. These substances have shown to reduce mortality when administered to animals prior to exposure to a lethal dose of radiation. This fact is of considerable importance since it permits reduction of radiation-induced damage and provides prophylactic treatment for the damaging effects produced by radiotherapy. The following radioprotection mechanisms were proposed: free radical scavenger, repair by hydrogen donation to target molecules formation of mixed disulfides, delay of cellular division and induction of hypoxia in the tissues. Radioprotective agents have been divided into four major groups: the thiol compounds, other sulfur compounds, pharmacological agents (anesthetic drugs, analgesics, tranquilizers, etc.) and other radioprotective agents (WR-1065, WR-2721, vitamins C and E, glutathione, etc.). Several studies revealed the radioprotective action of Apis mellifera honeybee venom as well as that of its components mellitin and histamine. Radioprotective activity of bee venom involves mainly the stimulation of the hematopoietic system. In addition, release of histamine and reduction in oxygen tension also contribute to the radioprotective action of bee venom. (author)

  17. Australian venomous jellyfish, envenomation syndromes, toxins and therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tibballs, James

    2006-12-01

    The seas and oceans around Australia harbour numerous venomous jellyfish. Chironex fleckeri, the box jellyfish, is the most lethal causing rapid cardiorespiratory depression and although its venom has been characterised, its toxins remain to be identified. A moderately effective antivenom exists which is also partially effective against another chirodropid, Chiropsalmus sp. Numerous carybdeids, some unidentified, cause less severe illness, including Carybdea rastoni whose toxins CrTX-A and CrTX-B are large proteins. Carukia barnesi, another small carybdeid is one cause of the 'Irukandji' syndrome which includes delayed pain from severe muscle cramping, vomiting, anxiety, restlessness, sweating and prostration, and occasionally severe hypertension and acute cardiac failure. The syndrome is in part caused by release of catecholamines but the cause of heart failure is undefined. The venom contains a sodium channel modulator. Two species of Physalia are present and although one is potentially lethal, has not caused death in Australian waters. Other significant genera of jellyfish include Tamoya, Pelagia, Cyanea, Aurelia and Chyrosaora.

  18. Importance of basophil activation testing in insect venom allergy

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    Kosnik Mitja

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Venom immunotherapy (VIT is the only effective treatment for prevention of serious allergic reactions to bee and wasp stings in sensitized individuals. However, there are still many questions and controversies regarding immunotherapy, like selection of the appropriate allergen, safety and long term efficacy. Methods Literature review was performed to address the role of basophil activation test (BAT in diagnosis of venom allergy. Results In patients with positive skin tests or specific IgE to both honeybee and wasp venom, IgE inhibition test can identify sensitizing allergen only in around 15% and basophil activation test increases the identification rate to around one third of double positive patients. BAT is also diagnostic in majority of patients with systemic reactions after insect stings and no detectable IgE. High basophil sensitivity to allergen is associated with a risk of side effects during VIT. Persistence of high basophil sensitivity also predicts a treatment failure of VIT. Conclusion BAT is a useful tool for better selection of allergen for immunotherapy, for identification of patients prone to side effects and patients who might be treatment failures. However, long term studies are needed to evaluate the accuracy of the test.

  19. Snake venom metalloproteinases and disintegrins: interactions with cells

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    Kamiguti A.S.

    1998-01-01

    Full Text Available Metalloproteinases and disintegrins are important components of most viperid and crotalid venoms. Large metalloproteinases referred to as MDC enzymes are composed of an N-terminal Metalloproteinase domain, a Disintegrin-like domain and a Cys-rich C-terminus. In contrast, disintegrins are small non-enzymatic RGD-containing cysteine-rich polypeptides. However, the disintegrin region of MDC enzymes bears a high degree of structural homology to that of the disintegrins, although it lacks the RGD motif. Despite these differences, both components share the property of being able to recognize integrin cell surface receptors and thereby to inhibit integrin-dependent cell reactions. Recently, several membrane-bound MDC enzymes, closely related to soluble venom MDC enzymes, have been described in mammalian cells. This group of membrane-anchored mammalian enzymes is also called the ADAM family of proteins due to the structure revealing A Disintegrin And Metalloproteinase domains. ADAMs are involved in the shedding of molecules from the cell surface, a property which is also shared by some venom MDC enzymes.

  20. Evaluation of Ground Arthropod Structure in Restoration Area of Talangagung Landfill as Edutourism Attraction, Kepanjen, Malang

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    Dinda Azalia

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Aim of this research is to know the composition, community structure and survivality of ground arthropod in restoration area of Talangagung edutourism landfill (TPA Wisata Edukasi Talangagung. Arthopod survey was conducted with four methods, yellow pan trap, pit fall trap, berlesetullgren, and sweep net. The research was done in four different locations with twice repetition. Survey location was devided in three zone, which is zone one with 10 years restoration, zone two with five years restoration, and zone three which not yet restored, and reference site. Abiotic factor which observed in this research such as light intensity, humidity, and air temperature. Analysis of arthropod diversity and community structure in each site was calculated from importance value index (IVI and diversity index (Shannon Wienner Index. The results show that diversity of ground arthropod in zone one, two, three, and reference site was on medium level which each score 1.9, 1.87, 1.71, and 2.08. Community structure with dominant pattern showed with IVI from Acrididae in zone one and zone three with IVI 67.2 % and 53.5 %. Myrmicidae in reference site dominance with IVI 51.4 % and Formicidae in zone one with IVI 48.6 %. Ground arthropod in zone one and reference site had similarity in community structure which showed in same cluster in biplot analysis and zone two and three was in another different cluster. Keywords : Arthropod, diversity, restoration, community structure

  1. Modification and Application of a Leaf Blower-vac for Field Sampling of Arthropods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zou, Yi; van Telgen, Mario D.; Chen, Junhui; Xiao, Haijun; de Kraker, Joop; Bianchi, Felix J. J. A.; van der Werf, Wopke

    2016-01-01

    Rice fields host a large diversity of arthropods, but investigating their population dynamics and interactions is challenging. Here we describe the modification and application of a leaf blower-vac for suction sampling of arthropod populations in rice. When used in combination with an enclosure, application of this sampling device provides absolute estimates of the populations of arthropods as numbers per standardized sampling area. The sampling efficiency depends critically on the sampling duration. In a mature rice crop, a two-minute sampling in an enclosure of 0.13 m2 yields more than 90% of the arthropod population. The device also allows sampling of arthropods dwelling on the water surface or the soil in rice paddies, but it is not suitable for sampling fast flying insects, such as predatory Odonata or larger hymenopterous parasitoids. The modified blower-vac is simple to construct, and cheaper and easier to handle than traditional suction sampling devices, such as D-vac. The low cost makes the modified blower-vac also accessible to researchers in developing countries. PMID:27584040

  2. Modification and Application of a Leaf Blower-vac for Field Sampling of Arthropods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zou, Yi; van Telgen, Mario D; Chen, Junhui; Xiao, Haijun; de Kraker, Joop; Bianchi, Felix J J A; van der Werf, Wopke

    2016-08-10

    Rice fields host a large diversity of arthropods, but investigating their population dynamics and interactions is challenging. Here we describe the modification and application of a leaf blower-vac for suction sampling of arthropod populations in rice. When used in combination with an enclosure, application of this sampling device provides absolute estimates of the populations of arthropods as numbers per standardized sampling area. The sampling efficiency depends critically on the sampling duration. In a mature rice crop, a two-minute sampling in an enclosure of 0.13 m(2) yields more than 90% of the arthropod population. The device also allows sampling of arthropods dwelling on the water surface or the soil in rice paddies, but it is not suitable for sampling fast flying insects, such as predatory Odonata or larger hymenopterous parasitoids. The modified blower-vac is simple to construct, and cheaper and easier to handle than traditional suction sampling devices, such as D-vac. The low cost makes the modified blower-vac also accessible to researchers in developing countries.

  3. Oak Tree Canker Disease Supports Arthropod Diversity in a Natural Ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yong-Bok Lee

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Microorganisms have many roles in nature. They may act as decomposers that obtain nutrients from dead materials, while some are pathogens that cause diseases in animals, insects, and plants. Some are symbionts that enhance plant growth, such as arbuscular mycorrhizae and nitrogen fixation bacteria. However, roles of plant pathogens and diseases in natural ecosystems are still poorly understood. Thus, the current study addressed this deficiency by investigating possible roles of plant diseases in natural ecosystems, particularly, their positive effects on arthropod diversity. In this study, the model system was the oak tree (Quercus spp. and the canker disease caused by Annulohypoxylon truncatum, and its effects on arthropod diversity. The oak tree site contained 44 oak trees; 31 had canker disease symptoms while 13 were disease-free. A total of 370 individual arthropods were detected at the site during the survey period. The arthropods belonged to 25 species, 17 families, and seven orders. Interestingly, the cankered trees had significantly higher biodiversity and richness compared with the canker-free trees. This study clearly demonstrated that arthropod diversity was supported by the oak tree canker disease.

  4. Disturbance and recovery of salt marsh arthropod communities following BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

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    Brittany D McCall

    Full Text Available Oil spills represent a major environmental threat to coastal wetlands, which provide a variety of critical ecosystem services to humanity. The U.S. Gulf of Mexico is a hub of oil and gas exploration activities that historically have impacted intertidal habitats such as salt marsh. Following the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill, we sampled the terrestrial arthropod community and marine invertebrates found in stands of Spartina alterniflora, the most abundant plant in coastal salt marshes. Sampling occurred in 2010 as oil was washing ashore and a year later in 2011. In 2010, intertidal crabs and terrestrial arthropods (insects and spiders were suppressed by oil exposure even in seemingly unaffected stands of plants; however, Littoraria snails were unaffected. One year later, crab and arthropods had largely recovered. Our work is the first attempt that we know of assessing vulnerability of the salt marsh arthropod community to oil exposure, and it suggests that arthropods are both quite vulnerable to oil exposure and quite resilient, able to recover from exposure within a year if host plants remain healthy.

  5. A revision of brain composition in Onychophora (velvet worms suggests that the tritocerebrum evolved in arthropods

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    Mayer Georg

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The composition of the arthropod head is one of the most contentious issues in animal evolution. In particular, controversy surrounds the homology and innervation of segmental cephalic appendages by the brain. Onychophora (velvet worms play a crucial role in understanding the evolution of the arthropod brain, because they are close relatives of arthropods and have apparently changed little since the Early Cambrian. However, the segmental origins of their brain neuropils and the number of cephalic appendages innervated by the brain - key issues in clarifying brain composition in the last common ancestor of Onychophora and Arthropoda - remain unclear. Results Using immunolabelling and neuronal tracing techniques in the developing and adult onychophoran brain, we found that the major brain neuropils arise from only the anterior-most body segment, and that two pairs of segmental appendages are innervated by the brain. The region of the central nervous system corresponding to the arthropod tritocerebrum is not differentiated as part of the onychophoran brain but instead belongs to the ventral nerve cords. Conclusions Our results contradict the assumptions of a tripartite (three-segmented brain in Onychophora and instead confirm the hypothesis of bipartite (two-segmented brain composition. They suggest that the last common ancestor of Onychophora and Arthropoda possessed a brain consisting of protocerebrum and deutocerebrum whereas the tritocerebrum evolved in arthropods.

  6. AaeAP1 and AaeAP2: Novel Antimicrobial Peptides from the Venom of the Scorpion, Androctonus aeneas: Structural Characterisation, Molecular Cloning of Biosynthetic Precursor-Encoding cDNAs and Engineering of Analogues with Enhanced Antimicrobial and Anticancer Activities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qiang Du

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The main functions of the abundant polypeptide toxins present in scorpion venoms are the debilitation of arthropod prey or defence against predators. These effects are achieved mainly through the blocking of an array of ion channel types within the membranes of excitable cells. However, while these ion channel-blocking toxins are tightly-folded by multiple disulphide bridges between cysteine residues, there are additional groups of peptides in the venoms that are devoid of cysteine residues. These non-disulphide bridged peptides are the subject of much research interest, and among these are peptides that exhibit antimicrobial activity. Here, we describe two novel non-disulphide-bridged antimicrobial peptides that are present in the venom of the North African scorpion, Androctonus aeneas. The cDNAs encoding the biosynthetic precursors of both peptides were cloned from a venom-derived cDNA library using 3'- and 5'-RACE strategies. Both translated precursors contained open-reading frames of 74 amino acid residues, each encoding one copy of a putative novel nonadecapeptide, whose primary structures were FLFSLIPSVIAGLVSAIRN and FLFSLIPSAIAGLVSAIRN, respectively. Both peptides were C-terminally amidated. Synthetic versions of each natural peptide displayed broad-spectrum antimicrobial activities, but were devoid of antiproliferative activity against human cancer cell lines. However, synthetic analogues of each peptide, engineered for enhanced cationicity and amphipathicity, exhibited increases in antimicrobial potency and acquired antiproliferative activity against a range of human cancer cell lines. These data clearly illustrate the potential that natural peptide templates provide towards the design of synthetic analogues for therapeutic exploitation.

  7. Seasonal distribution and diversity of ground arthropods in microhabitats following a shrub plantation age sequence in desertified steppe.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rentao Liu

    Full Text Available In desertified regions, shrub-dominated patches are important microhabitats for ground arthropod assemblages. As shrub age increases, soil, vegetation and microbiological properties can change remarkably and spontaneously across seasons. However, relatively few studies have analyzed how ground arthropods respond to the microhabitats created by shrubs of different plantation ages across seasons. Using 6, 15, 24 and 36 year-old plantations of re-vegetated shrubs (Caragana koushinskii in the desert steppe of northwestern China as a model system, we sampled ground arthropod communities using a pitfall trapping method in the microhabitats under shrubs and in the open areas between shrubs, during the spring, summer and autumn. The total ground arthropod assemblage was dominated by Carabidae, Melolonthidae, Curculionidae, Tenebrionidae and Formicidae that were affected by plantation age, seasonal changes, or the interaction between these factors, with the later two groups also influenced by microhabitat. Overall, a facilitative effect was observed, with more arthropods and a greater diversity found under shrubs as compared to open areas, but this was markedly affected by seasonal changes. There was a high degree of similarity in arthropod assemblages and diversity between microhabitats in summer and autumn. Shrub plantation age significantly influenced the distribution of the most abundant groups, and also the diversity indices of the ground arthropods. However, there was not an overall positive relationship between shrub age and arthropod abundance, richness or diversity index. The influence of plantation age on arthropod communities was also affected by seasonal changes. From spring through summer to autumn, community indices of ground arthropods tended to decline, and a high degree of similarity in these indices (with fluctuation was observed among different ages of shrub plantation in autumn. Altogether the recovery of arthropod communities was

  8. Seasonal distribution and diversity of ground arthropods in microhabitats following a shrub plantation age sequence in desertified steppe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Rentao; Zhu, Fan; Song, Naiping; Yang, Xinguo; Chai, Yongqing

    2013-01-01

    In desertified regions, shrub-dominated patches are important microhabitats for ground arthropod assemblages. As shrub age increases, soil, vegetation and microbiological properties can change remarkably and spontaneously across seasons. However, relatively few studies have analyzed how ground arthropods respond to the microhabitats created by shrubs of different plantation ages across seasons. Using 6, 15, 24 and 36 year-old plantations of re-vegetated shrubs (Caragana koushinskii) in the desert steppe of northwestern China as a model system, we sampled ground arthropod communities using a pitfall trapping method in the microhabitats under shrubs and in the open areas between shrubs, during the spring, summer and autumn. The total ground arthropod assemblage was dominated by Carabidae, Melolonthidae, Curculionidae, Tenebrionidae and Formicidae that were affected by plantation age, seasonal changes, or the interaction between these factors, with the later two groups also influenced by microhabitat. Overall, a facilitative effect was observed, with more arthropods and a greater diversity found under shrubs as compared to open areas, but this was markedly affected by seasonal changes. There was a high degree of similarity in arthropod assemblages and diversity between microhabitats in summer and autumn. Shrub plantation age significantly influenced the distribution of the most abundant groups, and also the diversity indices of the ground arthropods. However, there was not an overall positive relationship between shrub age and arthropod abundance, richness or diversity index. The influence of plantation age on arthropod communities was also affected by seasonal changes. From spring through summer to autumn, community indices of ground arthropods tended to decline, and a high degree of similarity in these indices (with fluctuation) was observed among different ages of shrub plantation in autumn. Altogether the recovery of arthropod communities was markedly affected by

  9. [Isolation and partial structural characteristics of major toxic components of Latrodectus pallidus venom].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charakha, A R; Shevchenko, L V; Molodkin, A K; Pluzhnikov, K A; Volkova, T M; Grishin, E V

    1997-03-01

    Toxic components of the Latrodectus pallidus spider venom were isolated and characterized. The venom was shown to contain a toxin specific for mammals and at least one insectospecific toxin. Partial amino acid sequences of both toxins were determined, and their high structural homology with previously studied alpha-latrotoxin and alpha-latroinsectotoxin from L. mactans tredecimguttatus was found.

  10. Maturity-related changes in venom toxicity of the freshwater stingray Potamotrygon leopoldi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirchhoff, Kim N; Klingelhöfer, Ines; Dahse, Hans-Martin; Morlock, Gertrud; Wilke, Thomas

    2014-12-15

    Aquatic venomous animals such as stingrays represent a largely untapped source for venom-based drug development. However, the major challenge for a potential drug development pipeline is the high inter- and intraspecific variability in toxicity and venom composition. As of today, little is known about maturity-driven changes in these traits in stingrays. The present study investigates the differences in toxicity and venom composition in different maturity stages of the freshwater stingray Potamotrygon leopoldi. This species can be found in the Xingú River basin (Brazil), where it mainly feeds on invertebrates, while being predated by other stingrays or large catfishes. P. leopoldi, as commonly known for stingrays, can cause severe injuries with the venomous dentine spine located at its tails. The toxicity of tissue extracts of juvenile and mature specimens was recorded on a myoblast cell culture bioassay. Venom composition and bioactivity of compounds were analyzed with planar chromatography linked to an Aliivibrio fischeri bioassay. Results revealed a decrease in venom toxicity during maturation, but no changes in venom composition. These findings may indicate that toxicity in mature specimens becomes evolutionary less important, probably due to a decrease in predation pressure.

  11. Characterization of inflammatory response induced by Potamotrygon motoro stingray venom in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kimura, Louise F; Prezotto-Neto, José P; Antoniazzi, Marta M; Jared, Simone Gs; Santoro, Marcelo L; Barbaro, Katia C

    2014-05-01

    Freshwater stingray accidents cause intense pain followed by edema, erythema, and necrosis formation. Treatment for stingray envenomation is based on administration of analgesic, antipyretic, and anti-inflammatory drugs. This report evaluated the local inflammatory reaction-including edema formation, leukocyte recruitment, release of inflammatory mediators, and histopathological changes-after the intraplantar injection of Potamotrygon motoro stingray venom in mice. Edema was observed as soon as 15 min after venom injection, peaking at 30 min, and lasted up to 48 h. In addition, P. motoro venom increased neutrophil counts in the site of injection, at all time periods and venom doses analyzed. Increased eosinophil and lymphocyte counts were detected mainly at 24 h. Moreover, monocytes/macrophages were observed in large amounts at 24 and 48 h. Microscopically, the venom induced leukocyte migration to the injured tissue, edema, mast cell degranulation, angiogenesis, and epidermal damage. Inflammatory mediator release (IL-6, MCP-1 and KC) was detected as soon as 1 h after venom injection, and it increased significantly at 4 h. At 24 h, the venom induced only the production of MCP-1. These results show that this stingray venom evokes a complex inflammatory reaction, with rapid and persistent edema formation, leukocyte recruitment, and release of cytokines and chemokines.

  12. In Vitro Toxic Effects of Puff Adder (Bitis arietans Venom, and Their Neutralization by Antivenom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven Fernandez

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available This study investigated the in vitro toxic effects of Bitis arietans venom and the ability of antivenom produced by the South African Institute of Medical Research (SAIMR to neutralize these effects. The venom (50 µg/mL reduced nerve-mediated twitches of the chick biventer muscle to 19% ± 2% of initial magnitude (n = 4 within 2 h. This inhibitory effect of the venom was significantly attenuated by prior incubation of tissues with SAIMR antivenom (0.864 µg/µL; 67% ± 4%; P < 0.05; n = 3–5, unpaired t-test. Addition of antivenom at t50 failed to prevent further inhibition or reverse the inhibition of twitches and responses to agonists. The myotoxic action of the venom (50 µg/mL was evidenced by a decrease in direct twitches (30% ± 6% of the initial twitch magnitude and increase in baseline tension (by 0.7 ± 0.3 g within 3 h of the chick biventer. Antivenom failed to block these effects. Antivenom however prevented the venom induced cytotoxic effects on L6 skeletal muscle cells. Venom induced a marginal but significant reduction in plasma clotting times at concentrations above 7.8 µg/100 µL of plasma, indicating poor procoagulant effects. In addition, the results of western immunoblotting indicate strong immunoreactivity with venom proteins, thus warranting further detailed studies on the neutralization of the effects of individual venom toxins by antivenom.

  13. Evolution of separate predation- and defence-evoked venoms in carnivorous cone snails.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dutertre, Sébastien; Jin, Ai-Hua; Vetter, Irina; Hamilton, Brett; Sunagar, Kartik; Lavergne, Vincent; Dutertre, Valentin; Fry, Bryan G; Antunes, Agostinho; Venter, Deon J; Alewood, Paul F; Lewis, Richard J

    2014-03-24

    Venomous animals are thought to inject the same combination of toxins for both predation and defence, presumably exploiting conserved target pharmacology across prey and predators. Remarkably, cone snails can rapidly switch between distinct venoms in response to predatory or defensive stimuli. Here, we show that the defence-evoked venom of Conus geographus contains high levels of paralytic toxins that potently block neuromuscular receptors, consistent with its lethal effects on humans. In contrast, C. geographus predation-evoked venom contains prey-specific toxins mostly inactive at human targets. Predation- and defence-evoked venoms originate from the distal and proximal regions of the venom duct, respectively, explaining how different stimuli can generate two distinct venoms. A specialized defensive envenomation strategy is widely evolved across worm, mollusk and fish-hunting cone snails. We propose that defensive toxins, originally evolved in ancestral worm-hunting cone snails to protect against cephalopod and fish predation, have been repurposed in predatory venoms to facilitate diversification to fish and mollusk diets.

  14. Determination of the Median Lethal Dose and Electrophoretic Pattern of Hottentotta saulcyi (Scorpiones, Buthidae Scorpion Venom

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    ErsenAydın Yağmur

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Background: In this study, we investigated the lethal potency, electrophoretic protein pattern and in vivo effects of Hottentotta saulcyi scorpion venom in mice.Methods: Scorpions were collected at night, by using a UV lamp from Mardin Province, Turkey. Venom was obtained from mature H. saulcyi scorpions by electrical stimulation of the telson. The lethality of the venom was determined by i.v. injections using Swiss mice. In vivo effects of the venom were assessed by using the intraperitoneal route (ip injections into mice (20±1g and monitored for 24 h. The protein profiles of the scorpion venom were analyzed by NuPAGE® Novex® 4–12 % gradient Bis-Tris gel followed by Coomassie blue staining.Results: The lethal assay of the venom was 0.73 mg/kg in mice. We determined the electrophoretic protein pattern of this scorpion venom to be 4, 6, 9, 31, 35, 40, 46 and 69 kDa by SDS-PAGE. Analysis of electrophoresis indicated that H. saulcyi scorpion intoxicated mice exhibited autonomic nervous system symptoms (tachypnea, restlessness, hyperexcitability, convulsions, salivation, lacrimation, weakness.Conclusions: Hottentotta saulcyi scorpion venom includes short-chain neurotoxins and long-chain neurotoxins according to the electrophoretic protein patterns. The stings of H. saulcyi scorpion must be considered of risk for humans in the southeastern region, Turkey.

  15. Peptidomics combined with cDNA library unravel the diversity of centipede venom

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rong, Mingqiang; Yang, Shilong; Wen, Bo

    2015-01-01

    showed a larger different to known peptide toxins such spider or scorpion toxins. Moreover, only 29 peptides from this centipede venom were identified with known function. It suggested that our work not only important to understand the composition of centipede venom, but also provide many valuable...

  16. Tentacle Transcriptome and Venom Proteome of the Pacific Sea Nettle, Chrysaora fuscescens (Cnidaria: Scyphozoa

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    Dalia Ponce

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Jellyfish venoms are rich sources of toxins designed to capture prey or deter predators, but they can also elicit harmful effects in humans. In this study, an integrated transcriptomic and proteomic approach was used to identify putative toxins and their potential role in the venom of the scyphozoan jellyfish Chrysaora fuscescens. A de novo tentacle transcriptome, containing more than 23,000 contigs, was constructed and used in proteomic analysis of C. fuscescens venom to identify potential toxins. From a total of 163 proteins identified in the venom proteome, 27 were classified as putative toxins and grouped into six protein families: proteinases, venom allergens, C-type lectins, pore-forming toxins, glycoside hydrolases and enzyme inhibitors. Other putative toxins identified in the transcriptome, but not the proteome, included additional proteinases as well as lipases and deoxyribonucleases. Sequence analysis also revealed the presence of ShKT domains in two putative venom proteins from the proteome and an additional 15 from the transcriptome, suggesting potential ion channel blockade or modulatory activities. Comparison of these potential toxins to those from other cnidarians provided insight into their possible roles in C. fuscescens venom and an overview of the diversity of potential toxin families in cnidarian venoms.

  17. Intersexual variations in the pharmacological properties of Coremiocnemis tropix (Araneae, Theraphosidae) spider venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herzig, Volker; Hodgson, Wayne C

    2009-02-01

    This study aimed to determine the biochemical, insecticidal and neurotoxic properties of venom from both sexes of the Australian spider Coremiocnemis tropix (Araneae, Theraphosidae). Insecticidal properties were tested in crickets, while in vitro neurotoxicity was determined in an avian skeletal muscle preparation. Some intersexual differences in venom composition were identified by rp-HPLC and by LC-MS, but the majority of components were found in venoms of both sexes. Injecting the venom into crickets revealed that venom from male specimens was slightly more potent, while female venom induced more prominent effects in the chick biventer cervicis nerve-muscle preparation. The results from the chick assay suggest the presence of at least two vertebrate-active neurotoxins. A pre-synaptic neurotoxin may explain the reversible inhibition of muscle twitches and the unaffected response to nicotinic agonists at medium concentrations of female and medium to high concentrations of male venom. In addition, the presence of a neurotoxin that blocks post-synaptic nicotinic receptors might explain the irreversible inhibition of muscle twitches and the reduced response to nicotinic agonists at high concentrations (5-10 microg/ml) of venom from female specimens only.

  18. Comparative analyses of venoms from American and African Sicarius spiders that differ in sphingomyelinase D activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zobel-Thropp, Pamela A; Bodner, Melissa R; Binford, Greta J

    2010-06-15

    Spider venoms are cocktails of toxic proteins and peptides, whose composition varies at many levels. Understanding patterns of variation in chemistry and bioactivity is fundamental for understanding factors influencing variation. The venom toxin sphingomyelinase D (SMase D) in sicariid spider venom (Loxosceles and Sicarius) causes dermonecrotic lesions in mammals. Multiple forms of venom-expressed genes with homology to SMase D are expressed in venoms of both genera. SMase D activity levels differ among major clades with American Sicarius vastly reduced relative to all Loxosceles and African Sicarius despite expression of SMase D homologs in venoms of American Sicarius. Here we report comparative analyses of protein composition and insecticidal activity of crude venoms from three Sicarius species, two from South Africa and one from Central America. Comparative 2-dimensional electrophoresis shows dense regions of proteins in the size range of SMase D in all three species, but there are differences in sizes and isoelectric points (pIs). Few proteins strictly co-migrate and there are clusters of proteins with similar pIs and molecular weights whose patterns of similarity do not necessarily reflect phylogenetic relatedness. In addition, PD(50) estimates on crickets indicate a small though significant decrease in potency of South American Sicarius venoms relative to African species.

  19. Proteomic Characterization and Comparison of Malaysian Tropidolaemus wagleri and Cryptelytrops purpureomaculatus Venom Using Shotgun-Proteomics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Syafiq Asnawi Zainal Abidin

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available 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.

  20. New analysis of the toxic compounds from the Androctonus mauretanicus mauretanicus scorpion venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oukkache, Naoual; Rosso, Jean-Pierre; Alami, Meriem; Ghalim, Norredine; Saïle, Rachid; Hassar, Mohammed; Bougis, Pierre E; Martin-Eauclaire, Marie-France

    2008-04-01

    Scorpion venoms are very complex mixtures of molecules, most of which are peptides displaying different kinds of biological activity. Indeed, these peptides specifically bind to a variety of pharmacological targets, in particular ionic channels located in prey tissues, resulting in neurotoxic effects. Toxins modulating Na+, K+, Ca2+ and Cl(-) currents have been described in scorpion venoms. In this work, we have used several specific antibodies raised against the most lethal scorpion toxins already described to screen the Moroccan scorpion Androctonus mauretanicus mauretanicus venom in order to characterize new compounds. This immunological screening was also implemented by toxicity tests in mice and with mass spectrometry study, providing new informations on the molecular composition of this venom. In fine, we were able to determine the molecular masses of 70-80 different compounds. According to the immunological data obtained, many toxins cross-react with three sera raised against the most lethal alpha-toxins found in North African scorpion venoms, but not at all with those raised against the main beta-toxins from South and North American venoms. Some of the previously described toxins from Androctonus mauretanicus mauretanicus venom could thus be detected by combining immunological tests, toxicity in mice and molecular masses. Among these toxins, one of them, which showed a mild cross-reaction with the serum raised against AaH I (a highly potent toxin from the venom of Androctonus australis), was identified as Amm III and fully sequenced.

  1. Snake venomics and antivenomics of the arboreal neotropical pitvipers Bothriechis lateralis and Bothriechis schlegelii.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lomonte, Bruno; Escolano, José; Fernández, Julián; Sanz, Libia; Angulo, Yamileth; Gutiérrez, José María; Calvete, Juan J

    2008-06-01

    We report the comparative proteomic characterization of the venoms of two related neotropical arboreal pitvipers from Costa Rica of the genus Bothriechis, B. lateralis (side-striped palm pit viper) and B. schlegelii (eyelash pit viper). 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 venom proteomes of B. lateralis and B. schlegelii comprise similar number of distinct proteins belonging, respectively, to 8 and 7 protein families. The two Bothriechis venoms contain bradykinin-potentiating peptides (BPPs), and proteins from the phospholipase A 2 (PLA 2), serine proteinase, l-amino acid oxidase (LAO), cysteine-rich secretory protein (CRISP), and Zn (2+)-dependent metalloproteinase (SVMP) families, albeit each species exhibit different relative abundances. Each venom also contains unique components, for example, snake venom vascular endothelial growth factor (svVEGF) and C-type lectin-like molecules in B. lateralis, and Kazal-type serine proteinase inhibitor-like proteins in B. schlegelii. Using a similarity coefficient, we estimate that the similarity of the venom proteins between the two Bothriechis taxa may be venom compositions, in spite of the fact that both species have evolved to adapt to arboreal habits. The major toxin families of B. lateralis and B. schlegelii are SVMP (55% of the total venom proteins) and PLA 2 (44%), respectively. Their different venom toxin compositions provide clues for rationalizing the distinct signs of envenomation caused by B. schlegelii and B. lateralis. An antivenomic study of the immunoreactivity of the Instituto Clodomiro Picado (ICP) polyvalent antivenom toward Bothriechis venoms revealed that l-amino acid oxidase and SVMPs represent the major antigenic protein species in both venoms. Our results provide a ground for

  2. Function and hydrostatics in the telson of the Burgess Shale arthropod Burgessia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Jih-Pai

    2009-06-23

    Burgessia bella is a characteristic Burgess Shale arthropod (508 Ma), but the unusual preservation of its telson in both straight and bent modes leads to contradictory interpretations of its function. A reinvestigation of the fossil material, including burial attitudes, combined with a comparison with the decay sequence and mechanics of the telson in living Limulus, demonstrates that the telson of Burgessia was flexible in its relaxed state but could be stiffened in life. Evidence of fluid within the telson indicates that this manoeuvrability was achieved by changes in hydrostatic pressure and muscular control. The dual mode in the Burgessia telson is, to my knowledge, the first documented among fossil arthropods. It indicates that the requirement for a rigid telson, which is resolved by a thick sclerotized cuticle in most arthropods, may first have been achieved by hydrostatic means.

  3. Spatial dynamics of understorey insectivorous birds and arthropods in a southeastern Brazilian Atlantic woodlot

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MA. Manhães

    Full Text Available Spatial distribution and spatial relationships in capture rates of understorey insectivorous birds and density of arthropods were investigated in a patch of upper montane rain forest in Minas Gerais state, southeastern Brazil, from January to December 2004. The composition of the arthropod fauna collected was similar to that reported for other tropical forests, with predominance of Araneae, Coleoptera, Hymenoptera and Hemiptera non-Heteroptera. A total of 26 bird species were captured, among which the more common were Dysithamnus mentalis, Conopophaga lineata, Platyrinchus mystaceus, Basileuterus culicivorus and Sclerurus scansor. Variation in the bird capture rates among sampling net lines were not correlated with arthropod density. Rather, individual analyses of some bird species suggest that spatial distribution of understorey insectivorous birds is better explained by habitat type.

  4. Pesticide-Induced Stress in Arthropod Pests for Optimized Integrated Pest Management Programs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guedes, R N C; Smagghe, G; Stark, J D; Desneux, N

    2016-01-01

    More than six decades after the onset of wide-scale commercial use of synthetic pesticides and more than fifty years after Rachel Carson's Silent Spring, pesticides, particularly insecticides, arguably remain the most influential pest management tool around the globe. Nevertheless, pesticide use is still a controversial issue and is at the regulatory forefront in most countries. The older generation of insecticide groups has been largely replaced by a plethora of novel molecules that exhibit improved human and environmental safety profiles. However, the use of such compounds is guided by their short-term efficacy; the indirect and subtler effects on their target species, namely arthropod pest species, have been neglected. Curiously, comprehensive risk assessments have increasingly explored effects on nontarget species, contrasting with the majority of efforts focused on the target arthropod pest species. The present review mitigates this shortcoming by hierarchically exploring within an ecotoxicology framework applied to integrated pest management the myriad effects of insecticide use on arthropod pest species.

  5. Seasonal relationships between birds and arthropods in bottomland forest canopy gaps.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bowen, Liessa, Thomas

    2004-12-31

    Bowen, Liessa, Thomas. 2004. Seasonal relationships between birds and arthropods in bottomland forest canopy gaps. PhD Dissertation. North Carolina State University. Raleigh, North Carolina. 98pp. I investigated the influence of arthropod availability and vegetation structure on avian habitat use at the center, edge, and adjacent to forest canopy gaps in 2001 and 2002. I used mist-netting and plot counts to estimate abundance of birds using three sizes (0.13, 0.26, and 0.5 ha) of 7-8 year old group-selection timber harvest openings during four seasons (spring migration, breeding, post-breeding, and fall migration) in a bottomland hardwood forest in the Upper Coastal Plain of South Carolina. I used foliage clipping, Malaise trapping, and pitfall trapping to determine arthropod abundance within each habitat, and I used a warm water crop-flush on captured birds to gather information about arthropods eaten. I observed more birds, including forest interior species, forest-edge spedge species, and several individual species, in early-successional canopy gap and gap-edge habitats than in surrounding mature forest during all seasons. I found a significant interaction between season and habitat type for several groups and individual species, suggesting a seasonal shift in habitat use. Captures of all birds, insectivorous birds, foliage- gleaners, ground-gleaners, aerial salliers, Hooded Warbler (Wilsonia citrina), Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis), White-eyed Vireo (Vireo griseus), and Black-throated Blue Warbler (Dendroica caerulescens) were positively correlated with understory vegetation density during two or more seasons. I found relationships between insectivorous birds and leaf-dwelling Lepidoptera, insectivorous birds and ground-dwelling arthropods, foliage-gleaning birds and foliage-dwelling arthropods, and aerial salliers and flying arthropods, as well as between individual bird species and arthropods. Relationships were inconsistent, however, with many

  6. High spatial variation in terrestrial arthropod species diversity and composition near the Greenland ice cap

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Rikke Reisner; Hansen, Oskar Liset Pryds; Bowden, Joseph James;

    2016-01-01

    . The empirical basis for this assumption, however, is weak. We examine the degree of spatial variation in species diversity and assemblage structure among five habitat types at two sites of similar abiotic conditions and plant species composition in southwest Greenland, using standardized field collection...... drivers of local arthropod assemblages, we used a combination of ordination techniques and linear regression. Species richness and the species pool differed between sites, with the latter indicating high species turnover. Local-scale assemblage patterns were related to soil moisture and temperature. We......Arthropods form a major part of the terrestrial species diversity in the Arctic, and are particularly sensitive to temporal changes in the abiotic environment. It is assumed that most Arctic arthropods are habitat generalists and that their diversity patterns exhibit low spatial variation...

  7. Report on the changes of LD50 of Bee venom Herbal Acupuncture

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    Ki Rok Kwon

    2005-02-01

    Full Text Available Objectives : This experiment was conducted to reevaluate LD50 of Korean bee venom acupuncture as many changes have occurred over the years. Methods : ICR mice were used as the experiment animals and bee venom acupuncture was manufactured under the protocols of Korean Institute of herbal Acupuncture. Based on the previous reports, experiment was divided into pre and main sections. Results : 1. Presumed LD50 value is at 5.25mg/kg. 2. Deaths of experiment animals occurred within 48 hours. 3. Reduced toxicity of the bee venom acupuncture is likely to be the results of more refined manufacturing process and production. Conclusion : Comparing with the values of the previous results, toxicity of the bee venom acupuncture showed significant changes and more accurate findings on LD50 value must be accomplished to lead further studies on the bee venom acupuncture.

  8. Electrospray liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry fingerprinting of Acanthophis (death adder) venoms: taxonomic and toxinological implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fry, Bryan G; Wickramaratna, Janith C; Hodgson, Wayne C; Alewood, Paul F; Kini, R M; Ho, Hao; Wüster, Wolfgang

    2002-01-01

    Death adders (genus Acanthophis) are unique among elapid snakes in both morphology and venom composition. Despite this genus being among the most divergent of all elapids, the venom has been historically regarded as relatively quite simple. In this study, liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (LC/MS) analysis has revealed a much greater diversity in venom composition, including the presence of molecules of novel molecular weights that may represent a new class of venom component. Furthermore, significant variation exists between species and populations, which allow for the LC/MS fingerprinting of each species. Mass profiling of Acanthophis venoms clearly demonstrates the effectiveness of this technique which underpins fundamental studies ranging from chemotaxonomy to drug design.

  9. Partial purification of box jellyfish (Chironex fleckeri) nematocyst venom isolated at the beachside.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bloom, D A; Burnett, J W; Alderslade, P

    1998-08-01

    Chironex fleckeri, the northern Australian box jellyfish produces one of, if not, the most potent animal venoms. Study of the venom has been hampered by the limits of the animals' range and the venom's thermolability. Using retained lethality and native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (NPAGE), we show that lyophilization of autolysis isolated nematocysts is an effective method of transporting the venom. In addition, Sephadex G-200 chromatography, spin concentration, and NPAGE fail to demonstrate the presence of a 600 kDa protein to which the bulk of the lethal activity has been ascribed. Sodium dodecyl sulfate capillary electrophoresis of crude venom yields several protein bands with a molecular weight range of 30-200 kDa. Freeze-thaw studies show a loss of activity and NPAGE bands after two freeze thaw cycles.

  10. Comparative analysis of methods for concentrating venom from jellyfish Rhopilema esculentum Kishinouye

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Cuiping; Yu, Huahua; Feng, Jinhua; Chen, Xiaolin; Li, Pengcheng

    2009-02-01

    In this study, several methods were compared for the efficiency to concentrate venom from the tentacles of jellyfish Rhopilema esculentum Kishinouye. The results show that the methods using either freezing-dry or gel absorption to remove water to concentrate venom are not applicable due to the low concentration of the compounds dissolved. Although the recovery efficiency and the total venom obtained using the dialysis dehydration method are high, some proteins can be lost during the concentrating process. Comparing to the lyophilization method, ultrafiltration is a simple way to concentrate the compounds at high percentage but the hemolytic activities of the proteins obtained by ultrafiltration appear to be lower. Our results suggest that overall lyophilization is the best and recommended method to concentrate venom from the tentacles of jellyfish. It shows not only the high recovery efficiency for the venoms but high hemolytic activities as well.

  11. Comparative analysis of methods for concentrating venom from jellyfish Rhopilema esculentum Kishinouye

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    YU Huahua; FENG Jinhua; CHEN Xiaolin; LI Pengcheng

    2009-01-01

    In this study, several methods were compared for the efficiency to concentrate venom from the tentacles of jellyfish Rhopilema esculentum Kishinouye. The results show that the methods using either freezing-dry or gel absorption to remove water to concentrate venom are not applicable due to the low concentration of the compounds dissolved. Although the recovery efficiency and the total venom obtained using the dialysis dehydration method are high, some proteins can be lost during the concentrating process. Comparing to the lyophilization method, ultrafiltration is a simple way to concentrate the compounds at high percentage but the hemolytic activities of the proteins obtained by ultrafiltration appear to be lower. Our results suggest that overall lyophilization is the best and recommended method to concentrate venom from the tentacles of jellyfish. It shows not only the high recovery efficiency for the venoms but high hemolytic activities as well.

  12. Therapeutic potential of snake venom in cancer therapy:current perspectives

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Vivek Kumar Vyas; Keyur Brahmbhatt; Hardik Bhatt; Utsav Parmar

    2013-01-01

    Many active secretions produced by animals have been employed in the development of new drugs to treat diseases such as hypertension and cancer. Snake venom toxins contributed significantly to the treatment of many medical conditions. There are many published studies describing and elucidating the anti-cancer potential of snake venom. Cancer therapy is one of the main areas for the use of protein peptides and enzymes originating from animals of different species. Some of these proteins or peptides and enzymes from snake venom when isolated and evaluated may bind specifically to cancer cell membranes, affecting the migration and proliferation of these cells. Some of substances found in the snake venom present a great potential as anti-tumor agent. In this review, we presented the main results of recent years of research involving the active compounds of snake venom that have anticancer activity.

  13. Venom-spraying behavior of the scorpion Parabuthus transvaalicus (Arachnida: Buthidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nisani, Zia; Hayes, William K

    2015-06-01

    Many animals use chemical squirting or spraying behavior as a defensive response. Some members of the scorpion genus Parabuthus (family Buthidae) can spray their venom. We examined the stimulus control and characteristics of venom spraying by Parabuthus transvaalicus to better understand the behavioral context for its use. Venom spraying occurred mostly, but not always, when the metasoma (tail) was contacted (usually grasped by forceps), and was absent during stinging-like thrusts of the metasoma apart from contact. Scorpions were significantly more likely to spray when contact was also accompanied by airborne stimuli. Sprays happened almost instantaneously following grasping by forceps (median=0.23s) as a brief (0.07-0.30s, mean=0.18s), fine stream (scorpion predators. Successive venom sprays varied considerably in duration and velocity. Collectively, these results suggest that venom spraying might be useful as an antipredator function and can be modulated based on threat.

  14. Effects of the Bee Venom Herbal Acupuncture on the Neurotransmitters of the Rat Brain Cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hyoung-Seok Yun

    2001-02-01

    Full Text Available In order to study the effects of bee venom Herbal Acupuncture on neurotransmitters in the rat brain cortex, herbal acupuncture with bee venom group and normal saline group was performed at LI4 bilaterally of the rat. the average optical density of neurotransmitters from the cerebral cortex was analysed 30 minutes after the herbal aqupuncture, by the immunohistochemistry. The results were as follows: 1. The density of NADPH-diaphorase in bee venom group was increased significantly at the motor cortex, visual cortex, auditory cortex, cingulate cortex, retrosplenial cortex and perirhinal cortex compared to the normal saline group. 2. The average optical density of vasoactive intestinal peptide in bee venom group had significant changes at the insular cortex, retrosplenial cortex and perirhinal cortex, compared to the normal saline group. 3. The average optical density of neuropeptide-Y in bee venom group increased significantly at the visual cortex and cingulate cortex, compared to the normal saline group.

  15. Sphingomyelinase D in sicariid spider venom is a potent insecticidal toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zobel-Thropp, Pamela A; Kerins, Alec E; Binford, Greta J

    2012-09-01

    Spider venoms have evolved over hundreds of millions of years with a primary role of immobilizing prey. Sphingomyelinase D (SMase D) and homologs in the SicTox gene family are the most abundantly expressed toxic protein in venoms of Loxosceles and Sicarius spiders (Sicariidae). While SMase D is well known to cause dermonecrotic lesions in mammals, little work has investigated the bioactivity of this enzyme in its presumed natural role of immobilizing insect prey. We expressed and purified recombinant SMase D from Loxosceles arizonica (Laz-SMase D) and compared its enzymatic and insecticidal activity to that of crude venom. SMase D enzymatic activities of purified protein and crude venom from the same species were indistinguishable. In addition, SMase D and crude venom have comparable and high potency in immobilization assays on crickets. These data indicate that SMase D is a potent insecticidal toxin, the role for which it presumably evolved.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana M. Moura-da-Silva

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available 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.

  17. Venomous and poisonous Australian animals of veterinary importance: a rich source of novel therapeutics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardy, Margaret C; Cochrane, Jonathon; Allavena, Rachel E

    2014-01-01

    Envenomation and poisoning by terrestrial animals (both vertebrate and invertebrate) are a significant economic problem and health risk for domestic animals in Australia. Australian snakes are some of the most venomous animals in the world and bees, wasps, ants, paralysis ticks, and cane toads are also present as part of the venomous and poisonous fauna. The diagnosis and treatment of envenomation or poisoning in animals is a challenge and can be a traumatic and expensive process for owners. Despite the potency of Australian venoms, there is potential for novel veterinary therapeutics to be modeled on venom toxins, as has been the case with human pharmaceuticals. A comprehensive overview of envenomation and poisoning signs in livestock and companion animals is provided and related to the potential for venom toxins to act as therapeutics.

  18. Venomous and Poisonous Australian Animals of Veterinary Importance: A Rich Source of Novel Therapeutics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Margaret C. Hardy

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Envenomation and poisoning by terrestrial animals (both vertebrate and invertebrate are a significant economic problem and health risk for domestic animals in Australia. Australian snakes are some of the most venomous animals in the world and bees, wasps, ants, paralysis ticks, and cane toads are also present as part of the venomous and poisonous fauna. The diagnosis and treatment of envenomation or poisoning in animals is a challenge and can be a traumatic and expensive process for owners. Despite the potency of Australian venoms, there is potential for novel veterinary therapeutics to be modeled on venom toxins, as has been the case with human pharmaceuticals. A comprehensive overview of envenomation and poisoning signs in livestock and companion animals is provided and related to the potential for venom toxins to act as therapeutics.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  20. Modulation of the Pharmacological and Biochemical Actions of Leiurusquinquestriatus (L.q) Scorpion Venom by Exposure to Gamma Radiation

    OpenAIRE

    Heba A. Mohamed*, Esmat A. Shaaban* , Aber M Amin** and Sanaa A. Kenawy

    2011-01-01

    This study was undertaken to evaluate the effect of gamma radiation (1.5 KGy & 3 KGy) on L.q scorpion venom. This was carried out by studying the toxicological, biochemical & immunological properties of the venom before and after exposure to gamma radiation. Material and methods Animals, venom, antivenin, gamma radiation, 125I. Results Data revealed that the toxicity of irradiated venom (1.5 KGy & 3 KGy) decreased as compared to that of the native one. LD50 of irradiated venom were 3.5 mg/kg ...

  1. Some enzymic activities of two Australian ant venoms: a jumper ant Myrmecia pilosula and a bulldog ant Myrmecia pyriformis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matuszek, M A; Hodgson, W C; King, R G; Sutherland, S K

    1994-12-01

    Venoms from two related Australian ants, a jumper ant (Myrmecia pilosula) and a bulldog ant (Myrmecia pyriformis), were quantitatively analysed for the following enzymic activities: phospholipase A2, phospholipase B, phospholipase C, hyaluronidase, esterase, acid phosphatase, alkaline phosphatase and phosphodiesterase. Both venoms contained phospholipase A2, phospholipase B, hyaluronidase, acid phosphatase and alkaline phosphatase activities. Myrmecia pyriformis venom had significantly greater phospholipase B, acid phosphatase and alkaline phosphatase activities than Myrmecia pilosula venom. No detectable quantities of phospholipase C, esterase or phosphodiesterase activities were found in either venom.

  2. Habitat Heterogeneity Affects Plant and Arthropod Species Diversity and Turnover in Traditional Cornfields.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eliana Martínez

    Full Text Available The expansion of the agricultural frontier by the clearing of remnant forests has led to human-dominated landscape mosaics. Previous studies have evaluated the effect of these landscape mosaics on arthropod diversity at local spatial scales in temperate and tropical regions, but little is known about fragmentation effects in crop systems, such as the complex tropical traditional crop systems that maintain a high diversity of weeds and arthropods in low-Andean regions. To understand the factors that influence patterns of diversity in human-dominated landscapes, we investigate the effect of land use types on plant and arthropod diversity in traditionally managed cornfields, via surveys of plants and arthropods in twelve traditional cornfields in the Colombian Andes. We estimated alpha and beta diversity to analyze changes in diversity related to land uses within a radius of 100 m to 1 km around each cornfield. We observed that forests influenced alpha diversity of plants, but not of arthropods. Agricultural lands had a positive relationship with plants and herbivores, but a negative relationship with predators. Pastures positively influenced the diversity of plants and arthropods. In addition, forest cover seemed to influence changes in plant species composition and species turnover of herbivore communities among cornfields. The dominant plant species varied among fields, resulting in high differentiation of plant communities. Predator communities also exhibited high turnover among cornfields, but differences in composition arose mainly among rare species. The crop system evaluated in this study represents a widespread situation in the tropics, therefore, our results can be of broad significance. Our findings suggest that traditional agriculture may not homogenize biological communities, but instead could maintain the regional pool of species through high beta diversity.

  3. Potential of intercropping for management of some arthropod and nematode pests of leafy vegetables in Kenya

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Linguya Kimaru S.

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available African leafy vegetables (ALVs play an important role as income and food security crops in many households in Kenya. However, their potential in alleviating poverty and ensuring household food and nutrition security has not been fully exploited. The objectives of this study were to identify some arthropod and nematode pests that infest ALVs and to evaluate the effectiveness of intercropping of susceptible and resistant plants for the management purposes. Three vegetable types: African nightshade, sunn hemp and spider plant were used in determining the efficacy of an intercrop of susceptible and non-susceptible types in reducing arthropod and nematode pest effect. The treatments in the field experiment consisted of different intercrop designs and a sole crop design as control while data was taken based on five different variables. Crops in the field were infested with arthropod pests and eight different species were enumerated. The same row and hill intercropping designs were the most effective in reducing the effect of arthropod and nematode pests compared to the control plots. Spider plant and African nightshade intercrops recorded the least arthropod pest damage, higher fresh and dry shoot yields and differed significantly (P≤0.05 to African nightshade planted as a sole crop. A similar trend was observed when the experiment was repeated with a sunn hemp and African nightshade intercrop. It is concluded from this study that intercropping of different crops can be integrated with other methods to provide an easily adaptable technology to apply for effective management of arthropod and nematode pests with low external inputs.

  4. Habitat Heterogeneity Affects Plant and Arthropod Species Diversity and Turnover in Traditional Cornfields.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez, Eliana; Rös, Matthias; Bonilla, María Argenis; Dirzo, Rodolfo

    2015-01-01

    The expansion of the agricultural frontier by the clearing of remnant forests has led to human-dominated landscape mosaics. Previous studies have evaluated the effect of these landscape mosaics on arthropod diversity at local spatial scales in temperate and tropical regions, but little is known about fragmentation effects in crop systems, such as the complex tropical traditional crop systems that maintain a high diversity of weeds and arthropods in low-Andean regions. To understand the factors that influence patterns of diversity in human-dominated landscapes, we investigate the effect of land use types on plant and arthropod diversity in traditionally managed cornfields, via surveys of plants and arthropods in twelve traditional cornfields in the Colombian Andes. We estimated alpha and beta diversity to analyze changes in diversity related to land uses within a radius of 100 m to 1 km around each cornfield. We observed that forests influenced alpha diversity of plants, but not of arthropods. Agricultural lands had a positive relationship with plants and herbivores, but a negative relationship with predators. Pastures positively influenced the diversity of plants and arthropods. In addition, forest cover seemed to influence changes in plant species composition and species turnover of herbivore communities among cornfields. The dominant plant species varied among fields, resulting in high differentiation of plant communities. Predator communities also exhibited high turnover among cornfields, but differences in composition arose mainly among rare species. The crop system evaluated in this study represents a widespread situation in the tropics, therefore, our results can be of broad significance. Our findings suggest that traditional agriculture may not homogenize biological communities, but instead could maintain the regional pool of species through high beta diversity.

  5. Expression of enzymatically inactive wasp venom phospholipase A1 in Pichia pastoris.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Irina Borodina

    Full Text Available Wasp venom allergy is the most common insect venom allergy in Europe. It is manifested by large local reaction or anaphylactic shock occurring after a wasp sting. The allergy can be treated by specific immunotherapy with whole venom extracts. Wasp venom is difficult and costly to obtain and is a subject to composition variation, therefore it can be advantageous to substitute it with a cocktail of recombinant allergens. One of the major venom allergens is phospholipase A1, which so far has been expressed in Escherichia coli and in insect cells. Our aim was to produce the protein in secreted form in yeast Pichia pastoris, which can give high yields of correctly folded protein on defined minimal medium and secretes relatively few native proteins simplifying purification.Residual amounts of enzymatically active phospholipase A1 could be expressed, but the venom protein had a deleterious effect on growth of the yeast cells. To overcome the problem we introduced three different point mutations at the critical points of the active site, where serine137, aspartate165 or histidine229 were replaced by alanine (S137A, D165A and H229A. All the three mutated forms could be expressed in P. pastoris. The H229A mutant did not have any detectable phospholipase A1 activity and was secreted at the level of several mg/L in shake flask culture. The protein was purified by nickel-affinity chromatography and its identity was confirmed by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. The protein could bind IgE antibodies from wasp venom allergic patients and could inhibit the binding of wasp venom to IgE antibodies specific for phospholipase A1 as shown by Enzyme Allergo-Sorbent Test (EAST. Moreover, the recombinant protein was allergenic in a biological assay as demonstrated by its capability to induce histamine release of wasp venom-sensitive basophils.The recombinant phospholipase A1 presents a good candidate for wasp venom immunotherapy.

  6. Cytotoxicity and hemolytic activity of jellyfish Nemopilema nomurai (Scyphozoa: Rhizostomeae) venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Changkeun; Munawir, Al; Cha, Mijin; Sohn, Eun-Tae; Lee, Hyunkyoung; Kim, Jong-Shu; Yoon, Won Duk; Lim, Donghyun; Kim, Euikyung

    2009-07-01

    The recent bloom of a giant jellyfish Nemopilema nomurai has caused a danger to sea bathers and fishery damages in the waters of China, Korea, and Japan. The present study investigated the cytotoxic and hemolytic activities of crude venom extract of N. nomurai using a number of in vitro assays. The jellyfish venom showed a much higher cytotoxic activity in H9C2 heart myoblast than in C2C12 skeletal myoblast (LC(50)=2 microg/mL vs. 12 microg/mL, respectively), suggesting its possible in vivo selective toxicity on cardiac tissue. This result is consistent with our previous finding that cardiovascular function is a target of the venom. In order to determine the stability of N. nomurai venom, its cytotoxicity was examined under the various temperature and pH conditions. The activity was relatively well retained at low environmental temperature (or=60 degrees C). In pH stability test, the venom has abruptly lost its activity at low pH environment (pHvenom was examined using the erythrocytes of cat, dog, human, rabbit and rat. Venom concentration-dependent hemolysis could be observed from 10 microg/mL of protein equivalents or higher with variable potencies in different species, among which dog erythrocyte was the most susceptible to the venom (EC(50)=151 microg/mL). SDS-PAGE analysis of N. nomurai venom showed the molecules of 20-40 kDa and 10-15 kDa appeared to be the major protein components of the venom.

  7. Milking and partial characterization of venom from the Brazilian spider Vitalius dubius (Theraphosidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rocha-E-Silva, Thomaz A A; Sutti, Rafael; Hyslop, Stephen

    2009-01-01

    The theraphosid spider genus Vitalius contains several species found in southeastern Brazil. In this work, we used electrostimulation to obtain venom from Vitalius dubius and examined its general composition. Male spiders yielded significantly less (p venom (12.5 +/- 0.7 mg of liquid/spider, n = 16; mean +/- S.E.M.) than female spiders (25.5 +/- 2.0 mg of liquid/spider, n = 11). However, when corrected for spider weight, males yielded slightly more venom (2.89 +/- 0.16 mg/g vs. 2.45 +/- 0.76 mg/g for males and females, respectively, p Venom yield correlated linearly with spider weight for spiders weighing up to approximately 12-13 g, but decreased in very heavy females. There was a marked decrease in venom yield after the first milking. The protein concentration of pooled venom was 18.3 +/- 2.4 mg/ml (n = 4) and accounted for 16.6 +/- 4.7% of the dry venom weight. The venom contained high hyaluronidase activity (275 +/- 24 TRU/mg of protein, n = 4), with a molecular mass of approximately 45 kDa estimated by zymography. SDS-PAGE revealed a few proteins with molecular masses >14 kDa but showed two staining bands of peptides venom reacted in ELISA with affinity-purified IgG from commercial arachnidic antivenom. Immunoblotting with this IgG detected proteins of 30-140 kDa only. Fractionation of the venom by reverse-phase chromatography resulted in five major and eight minor peaks.

  8. [Alpha and beta arthropods diversity from the different environments of Parque Nacional Los Cardones, Salta, Argentina].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belén Cava, Maria; Antonio Corronca, José; José Echeverría, Alejandro

    2013-12-01

    The essential role of the National Parks is to protect nature, in order to prevent the deterioration and loss of the ecosystem under protection. Very few records about the diversity of arthropods are known from Los Cardones National Park, where three eco-regions are protected: Puna and Monte eco-regions and the High Andean Grassland of the Yungas. Here, we aimed to compare the alpha and beta diversity of arthropods in these eco-regions, and to prove if sites from the same ecoregion, show greater similarity between them in their assemblages, than with sites of the other eco-regions. We also identified arthropod orders with higher species richness, and indicated the families that contribute the most to the registered beta diversity. Three sampling sites were established on each eco-region and the arthropods were sampled using pitfall traps and suction samples. We evaluated the obtained inventory through nonparametric estimators of species richness, and compared diversity among eco-regions through "diversity profiles" and "effective number of species". Beta diversity was assessed by different methods such as the Morisita Index, nonmetric multidimentional scaling analysis, a multiple permutation procedure, and a Similarity Percentage analysis. We recorded 469 spp/morphospecies and recognized three arthropod orders (spiders, dipterans and hymenopterans) that are diverse and abundant in the Park. Besides, the diversity in Los Cardones National Park was found to be high, but it was observed higher in the High Andean Grassland of the Yungas, and lower in the Puna. The inventory obtained was good, reached up to the 81% of the species richness estimated by nonparametric estimators. Each eco-region of the park showed a very particular arthropod community that was tested by a multi-response permutation procedure. The species turnover between eco-regions was high, so that the different environments of the protected area are contributing to the maintenance of the regional

  9. The response of sward-dwelling arthropod communities to reduced grassland management intensity in pastures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helden Alvin J.

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available We compared arthropod taxon richness, diversity and community structure of two replicated grassland husbandry experiments to investigate effects of reduced management intensity, as measured by nutrient input levels (390, 224 and 0 kg/ha per year N in one experiment, and 225 and 88 kg/ha per year N in another. Suction sampling was used to collect Araneae, Coleoptera, Hemiptera and Hymenoptera, with Araneae and Coleoptera also sampled with pitfall trapping. Univariate analyses found no significant differences in abundance and species density between treatments. However, with multivariate analysis, there were significant differences in arthropod community structure between treatments in both experiments.

  10. The diversity and abundance of small arthropods in onion, Allium cepa, seed crops, and their potential role in pollination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, M K; Howlett, B G; Wallace, A R; McCallum, J A; Teulon, D A J

    2011-01-01

    Onion, Allium cepa L. (Asparagales: Amaryllidaceae), crop fields grown for seed production require arthropod pollination for adequate seed yield. Although many arthropod species visit A. cepa flowers, for most there is little information on their role as pollinators. Small flower visiting arthropods (body width cepa seed fields in the North and South Islands of New Zealand using window traps revealed that small arthropods were highly abundant among all except one field. Insects belonging to the orders Diptera and Thysanoptera were the most abundant and Hymenoptera, Collembola, Psocoptera, Hemiptera, and Coleoptera were also present. To test whether small arthropods might contribute to pollination, seed sets from umbels caged within 3 mm diameter mesh cages were compared with similarly caged, hand-pollinated umbels and uncaged umbels. Caged umbels that were not hand-pollinated set significantly fewer seeds (average eight seeds/umbel, n = 10) than caged hand-pollinated umbels (average 146 seeds/umbel) and uncaged umbels (average 481 seeds/umbel). Moreover, sticky traps placed on umbels within cages captured similar numbers of small arthropods as sticky traps placed on uncaged umbels, suggesting cages did not inhibit the movement of small arthropods to umbels. Therefore, despite the high abundance of small arthropods within fields, evidence to support their role as significant pollinators of commercial A. cepa seed crops was not found.

  11. The Multiple Impacts of Tropical Forest Fragmentation on Arthropod Biodiversity and on their Patterns of Interactions with Host Plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benítez-Malvido, Julieta; Dáttilo, Wesley; Martínez-Falcón, Ana Paola; Durán-Barrón, César; Valenzuela, Jorge; López, Sara; Lombera, Rafael

    2016-01-01

    Tropical rain forest fragmentation affects biotic interactions in distinct ways. Little is known, however, about how fragmentation affects animal trophic guilds and their patterns of interactions with host plants. In this study, we analyzed changes in biotic interactions in forest fragments by using a multitrophic approach. For this, we classified arthropods associated with Heliconia aurantiaca herbs into broad trophic guilds (omnivores, herbivores and predators) and assessed the topological structure of intrapopulation plant-arthropod networks in fragments and continuous forests. Habitat type influenced arthropod species abundance, diversity and composition with greater abundance in fragments but greater diversity in continuous forest. According to trophic guilds, coleopteran herbivores were more abundant in continuous forest and overall omnivores in fragments. Continuous forest showed a greater diversity of interactions than fragments. Only in fragments, however, did the arthropod community associated with H aurantiaca show a nested structure, suggesting novel and/or opportunistic host-arthropod associations. Plants, omnivores and predators contributed more to nestedness than herbivores. Therefore, Heliconia-arthropod network properties do not appear to be maintained in fragments mainly caused by the decrease of herbivores. Our study contributes to the understanding of the impact of fragmentation on the structure and dynamics of multitrophic arthropod communities associated with a particular plant species of the highly biodiverse tropical forests. Nevertheless, further replication of study sites is needed to strengthen the conclusion that forest fragmentation negatively affects arthropod assemblages. PMID:26731271

  12. The first myriapod genome sequence reveals conservative arthropod gene content and genome organisation in the centipede Strigamia maritima

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chipman, Ariel D; Ferrier, David E K; Brena, Carlo; Qu, Jiaxin; Hughes, Daniel S T; Schröder, Reinhard; Torres-Oliva, Montserrat; Znassi, Nadia; Jiang, Huaiyang; Almeida, Francisca C; Alonso, Claudio R; Apostolou, Zivkos; Aqrawi, Peshtewani; Arthur, Wallace; Barna, Jennifer C J; Blankenburg, Kerstin P; Brites, Daniela; Capella-Gutiérrez, Salvador; Coyle, Marcus; Dearden, Peter K; Du Pasquier, Louis; Duncan, Elizabeth J; Ebert, Dieter; Eibner, Cornelius; Erikson, Galina; Evans, Peter D; Extavour, Cassandra G; Francisco, Liezl; Gabaldón, Toni; Gillis, William J; Goodwin-Horn, Elizabeth A; Green, Jack E; Griffiths-Jones, Sam; Grimmelikhuijzen, Cornelis J P; Gubbala, Sai; Guigó, Roderic; Han, Yi; Hauser, Frank; Havlak, Paul; Hayden, Luke; Helbing, Sophie; Holder, Michael; Hui, Jerome H L; Hunn, Julia P; Hunnekuhl, Vera S; Jackson, LaRonda; Javaid, Mehwish; Jhangiani, Shalini N; Jiggins, Francis M; Jones, Tamsin E; Kaiser, Tobias S; Kalra, Divya; Kenny, Nathan J; Korchina, Viktoriya; Kovar, Christie L; Kraus, F Bernhard; Lapraz, François; Lee, Sandra L; Lv, Jie; Mandapat, Christigale; Manning, Gerard; Mariotti, Marco; Mata, Robert; Mathew, Tittu; Neumann, Tobias; Newsham, Irene; Ngo, Dinh N; Ninova, Maria; Okwuonu, Geoffrey; Ongeri, Fiona; Palmer, William J; Patil, Shobha; Patraquim, Pedro; Pham, Christopher; Pu, Ling-Ling; Putman, Nicholas H; Rabouille, Catherine; Ramos, Olivia Mendivil; Rhodes, Adelaide C; Robertson, Helen E; Robertson, Hugh M; Ronshaugen, Matthew; Rozas, Julio; Saada, Nehad; Sánchez-Gracia, Alejandro; Scherer, Steven E; Schurko, Andrew M; Siggens, Kenneth W; Simmons, DeNard; Stief, Anna; Stolle, Eckart; Telford, Maximilian J; Tessmar-Raible, Kristin; Thornton, Rebecca; van der Zee, Maurijn; von Haeseler, Arndt; Williams, James M; Willis, Judith H; Wu, Yuanqing; Zou, Xiaoyan; Lawson, Daniel; Muzny, Donna M; Worley, Kim C; Gibbs, Richard A; Akam, Michael; Richards, Stephen

    2014-01-01

    Myriapods (e.g., centipedes and millipedes) display a simple homonomous body plan relative to other arthropods. All members of the class are terrestrial, but they attained terrestriality independently of insects. Myriapoda is the only arthropod class not represented by a sequenced genome. We present

  13. The effects of land-use change on arthropod richness and abundance on Santa Maria Island (Azores)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Meijer, Seline S.; Whittaker, Robert J.; Borges, P. A. V.

    2011-01-01

    We study how endemic, native and introduced arthropod species richness, abundance, diversity and community composition vary between four different habitat types (native forest, exotic forest of Cryptomeria japonica, semi-natural pasture and intensive pasture) and how arthropod richness and abunda...... role of the native forest in arthropod conservation in the Azores, it also shows that unmanaged exotic forests have provided alternative habitat suitable for some native species of forest specialist arthropods, particularly saproxylic beetles.......We study how endemic, native and introduced arthropod species richness, abundance, diversity and community composition vary between four different habitat types (native forest, exotic forest of Cryptomeria japonica, semi-natural pasture and intensive pasture) and how arthropod richness...... and abundance change with increasing distance from the native forest in adjacent habitat types in Santa Maria Island, the Azores. Arthropods were sampled in four 150 m long transects in each habitat type. Arthropods were identified to species level and classified as Azorean endemic, single-island endemic (SIE...

  14. Spatial distribution and internal metal concentrations of terrestrial arthropods in a moderately contaminated lowland floodplain along the Rhine River

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schipper, Aafke M. [Department of Environmental Science, Institute for Wetland and Water Research, Radboud University Nijmegen, P.O. Box 9010, 6500 GL Nijmegen (Netherlands)], E-mail: a.schipper@science.ru.nl; Wijnhoven, Sander [Centre for Sustainable Management of Resources, Institute for Science, Innovation and Society, Radboud University Nijmegen, P.O. Box 9010, 6500 GL Nijmegen (Netherlands); Netherlands Institute of Ecology, Centre for Estuarine and Marine Ecology, Monitor Taskforce, P.O. Box 140, 4400 AC Yerseke (Netherlands); Leuven, Rob S.E.W.; Ragas, Ad M.J.; Jan Hendriks, A. [Department of Environmental Science, Institute for Wetland and Water Research, Radboud University Nijmegen, P.O. Box 9010, 6500 GL Nijmegen (Netherlands)

    2008-01-15

    Soil metal concentrations, inundation characteristics and abundances of 14 arthropod taxa were investigated in a moderately contaminated lowland floodplain along the Rhine River and compared to the hinterland. Internal metal concentrations were determined for the orders of Coleoptera (beetles) and Araneida (spiders) and were related to soil concentrations. The floodplain was characterized by larger arthropod abundance than the hinterland, in spite of recurrent inundations and higher soil metal concentrations. Most arthropod taxa showed increasing abundance with decreasing distance to the river channel and increasing average inundation duration. For Cd, Cu, Pb and Zn, significant relations were found between arthropod concentrations and concentrations in soil. Significant relations were few but positive, indicating that increasing soil concentrations result in increasing body burdens in arthropods. For arthropod-eating vertebrates, these results might imply that larger prey availability in the floodplain coincides with higher metal concentrations in prey, possibly leading to increased exposure to metal contamination. - Recurrent floodplain inundations affect terrestrial arthropod numbers and metal contamination levels.

  15. The Multiple Impacts of Tropical Forest Fragmentation on Arthropod Biodiversity and on their Patterns of Interactions with Host Plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benítez-Malvido, Julieta; Dáttilo, Wesley; Martínez-Falcón, Ana Paola; Durán-Barrón, César; Valenzuela, Jorge; López, Sara; Lombera, Rafael

    2016-01-01

    Tropical rain forest fragmentation affects biotic interactions in distinct ways. Little is known, however, about how fragmentation affects animal trophic guilds and their patterns of interactions with host plants. In this study, we analyzed changes in biotic interactions in forest fragments by using a multitrophic approach. For this, we classified arthropods associated with Heliconia aurantiaca herbs into broad trophic guilds (omnivores, herbivores and predators) and assessed the topological structure of intrapopulation plant-arthropod networks in fragments and continuous forests. Habitat type influenced arthropod species abundance, diversity and composition with greater abundance in fragments but greater diversity in continuous forest. According to trophic guilds, coleopteran herbivores were more abundant in continuous forest and overall omnivores in fragments. Continuous forest showed a greater diversity of interactions than fragments. Only in fragments, however, did the arthropod community associated with H aurantiaca show a nested structure, suggesting novel and/or opportunistic host-arthropod associations. Plants, omnivores and predators contributed more to nestedness than herbivores. Therefore, Heliconia-arthropod network properties do not appear to be maintained in fragments mainly caused by the decrease of herbivores. Our study contributes to the understanding of the impact of fragmentation on the structure and dynamics of multitrophic arthropod communities associated with a particular plant species of the highly biodiverse tropical forests. Nevertheless, further replication of study sites is needed to strengthen the conclusion that forest fragmentation negatively affects arthropod assemblages.

  16. The Multiple Impacts of Tropical Forest Fragmentation on Arthropod Biodiversity and on their Patterns of Interactions with Host Plants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julieta Benítez-Malvido

    Full Text Available Tropical rain forest fragmentation affects biotic interactions in distinct ways. Little is known, however, about how fragmentation affects animal trophic guilds and their patterns of interactions with host plants. In this study, we analyzed changes in biotic interactions in forest fragments by using a multitrophic approach. For this, we classified arthropods associated with Heliconia aurantiaca herbs into broad trophic guilds (omnivores, herbivores and predators and assessed the topological structure of intrapopulation plant-arthropod networks in fragments and continuous forests. Habitat type influenced arthropod species abundance, diversity and composition with greater abundance in fragments but greater diversity in continuous forest. According to trophic guilds, coleopteran herbivores were more abundant in continuous forest and overall omnivores in fragments. Continuous forest showed a greater diversity of interactions than fragments. Only in fragments, however, did the arthropod community associated with H aurantiaca show a nested structure, suggesting novel and/or opportunistic host-arthropod associations. Plants, omnivores and predators contributed more to nestedness than herbivores. Therefore, Heliconia-arthropod network properties do not appear to be maintained in fragments mainly caused by the decrease of herbivores. Our study contributes to the understanding of the impact of fragmentation on the structure and dynamics of multitrophic arthropod communities associated with a particular plant species of the highly biodiverse tropical forests. Nevertheless, further replication of study sites is needed to strengthen the conclusion that forest fragmentation negatively affects arthropod assemblages.

  17. Relationship between land use pattern and the structure and diversity of soil meso-micro arthropod community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Limin; Zhang, Xueping; Cui, Wei

    2014-05-01

    Soil arthropod communities can provide valuable information regarding the impacts of human disturbances on ecosystem structure. Our study evaluated the structure, composition and diversity of soil meso-micro arthropod communities, in six different vegetation types and assessed the impacts of human activity. A completely randomized design, including 3 replicates from 6 sites (mowing steppe, natural grassland, severe degradation grassland, farmland, artificial shelter forest, and wetland) was used. Soil samples from the depth of 0 to 20 cm were collected during May, July, and September 2007. Soil meso-micro arthropod were separated using the Tullgren funnels method, and were identified and counted. Soil pH value, organic matter, and total nitrogen were measured in topsoil (0-20 cm) from each site. A total of 5,602 soil meso-micro arthropod individuals were collected, representing 4 classes, 14 orders, and 57 families. Most soil arthropods were widely distributed; however, some species appeared to be influenced by environment variables, and might serve as bioindicators of adverse human impacts. Canonical correspondence analysis indicated the soil arthropod distribution in the severely degraded grassland, mowing steppe, farmland, and shelter forest differed from the natural grassland. Arthropod density and diversity were greatest in May, and the forestland community was the most stable. Because of the vital role soil arthropods have in maintaining a healthy ecosystem, mechanisms to maintain their abundance and diversity should be further evaluated.

  18. Community Composition and Structure of Soil Macro-Arthropods Under Agricultural Land Uses in the Black Soil Region of Jilin Province, China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WU Dong-hui; ZHANG Bai; CHEN Peng

    2006-01-01

    Soil macro-arthropods in the black soil region in Jilin Province of China were investigated with the emphasis laid on the species richness and abundance in relation to the types of land-use, i.e., farm yard, farm land and Three-North Forest Shelter Belt. Soil macro-arthropods were hand-sorted in the field. A total of 2 357 soil macro-arthropod individuals was captured and fell into 70 families. The results suggested that type of land use affected the species richness and abundance of soil macro-arthropods. Agricultural practices had a strong impact on the soil macro-arthropods community, the conventional cultivations changed the vertical structure of macro-arthropods in the soil profile, and improved the richness and abundance of macro-arthropods in the lower soil layers especially in July. The results also showed that different groups of soil macro-arthropods had various responses to land use changes.

  19. Age-related Variation in Snake Venom:Evidence from Two Snakes (Naja atra and Deinagkistrodon acutus) in Southeastern China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Ying HE; Jianfang GAO; Longhui LIN; Xiaomei MA; Xiang JI

    2014-01-01

    In this study we explored electrophoretic proifles, enzymatic activities and immunoreactivity of neonate and adult venoms from two snakes (Naja atra and Deinagkistrodon acutus) coexisting in southeastern China. Age-related variation in electrophoretic proifles was found in both species and proteolytic and ifbrinogenolytic activity was higher in neonate than adult venoms. Neonate D. acutus venom had higher 5' nucleotidase, PLA2, hyaluronidase and gelatinolytic activity, but lower esterolytic activity, than adult venom. Neonate and adult D. acutus venoms showed identical phosphomonoesterase, LAO and ifbrinolytic activities. Neonate N. atra venom had higher phosphomonoesterase and LAO activity, but lower 5' nucleotidase, PLA2, hyaluronidase and AchE activities than adult venom. Neonate and adult N. atra venoms showed similar gelatinolytic activity. Further, age-dependent immunoreactivity was found in both species, and cross-reactions between homologous venoms and antiserums were closely related to venom composition. We speculate that age-related variation in venom characteristics is possibly driven by evolutionary forces associated with ontogenetic shifts in dietary habits, competition and predation pressure.

  20. Fine structure of the stinger, histology and histochemistry of the venom gland in the scorpion Androctonus amoreuxi (Buthidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Belal A. Soliman

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available The venom apparatus of the scorpion Androctonus amoreuxi has been identified histologically and histochemically in the present study. The results showed that this apparatus composed of a pair of venom glands and a stinger located in the terminal segment called telson. The stinger of the venom apparatus has been studied by the light microscope and SEM. The stinger, located at the end section of the telson, is sickle-shaped. The venom is ejected through a pair of venom pores on its subterminal portion. Both venom ducts extend along the stinger without contact with each other since they are separated by connective tissue cells. The stinger is covered by cuticle and spines. Each venom gland is covered by a sheath of striated muscle and is lined with extensively folded secretory epithelium that consists of non-secretory and secretory venom-producing cells. The venom-producing cells reacted positively to histochemical tests for carbohydrates and proteins. The outcomes also revealed that the venom-producing cells of both glands produce neutral mucosubstances. The structure and secretion of scorpion venom glands are discussed within the context of the present results.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  2. The action of red scorpion (Mesobuthus tamulus coconsis, pocock venom and its isolated protein fractions on blood sodium levels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. V. Badhe

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Red scorpion (Mesobuthus tamulus or Buthus tamulus venom samples were collected at different regions of India: western (Chiplun and Ahmednagar from Maharashtra State and southern (Ratnagiri and Chennai from Tamil Nadu State. The action of whole venoms on the blood sodium levels of mice was assessed using flame photometry. Seven peptides were common to all venom samples. They were separated using the native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (PAGE technique and their activities were also studied using flame photometry. There was a decrease in the concentration of sodium ions in the serum, which suggested the blockage of such ions by scorpion venom toxins. Among the 10 protein bands isolated, the band at 79.6 kDa presented maximum activity in decreasing serum sodium ions concentration. Whole venom from Chiplun region also showed maximum activity. The western blotting technique demonstrated that the anti-scorpion venom sera produced by Haffkine Biopharmaceuticals Corporation Ltd., India, neutralized all four venom samples.

  3. Solution structure of Cn5, a crustacean toxin found in the venom of the scorpions Centruroides noxius and Centruroides suffusus suffusus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corzo, Gerardo; Prochnicka-Chalufour, Ada; García, Blanca I; Possani, Lourival D; Delepierre, Muriel

    2009-11-01

    The crustacean toxin Cn5 from Centruroides noxius Hoffmann and peptide Css39.8 from Centruroides suffusus suffusus scorpion venoms are identical peptides, as confirmed by amino acid sequence of purified toxins and by DNA sequencing of the two respective cloned genes. Therefore in this communication they will be simply named Cn5. Cn5 is a 66 amino acid long peptide with four disulfide bridges, formed between pairs of cysteines: C1-C8, C2-C5, C3-C6, and C4-C7 (the numbers indicate the relative positions of the cysteine residues in the primary structure). This peptide is non-toxic to mammals but deadly to arthropods (LD(50) 28.5 mg/g body weight of crayfish). Its three-dimensional structure was determined by NMR using a total of 965 meaningful distance constraints derived from the volume integration of the 2D NOESY spectra. The Cn5 structure displays a mixed alpha/beta fold stabilized by four disulfide bridges, with a kink induced by a cis-proline in its C-terminal part. Cn5 electrostatic surface is compared to that of Cn2 toxin toxic to mammals. The local differences produced by additional or substituted residues that would influence toxin selectivity towards mammalian or crustacean Na(+) channels are discussed.

  4. [Effects of plant viruses on vector and non-vector herbivorous arthropods and their natural enemies: a mini review].

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Xiao-Chan; Xu, Hong-Xing; Zhou, Xiao-Jun; Zheng, Xu-Song; Sun, Yu-Jian; Yang, Ya-Jun; Tian, Jun-Ce; Lü, Zhong-Xian

    2014-05-01

    Plant viruses transmitted by arthropods, as an important biotic factor, may not only directly affect the yield and quality of host plants, and development, physiological characteristics and ecological performances of their vector arthropods, but also directly or indirectly affect the non-vector herbivorous arthropods and their natural enemies in the same ecosystem, thereby causing influences to the whole agro-ecosystem. This paper reviewed the progress on the effects of plant viruses on herbivorous arthropods, including vector and non-vector, and their natural enemies, and on their ecological mechanisms to provide a reference for optimizing the management of vector and non-vector arthropod populations and sustainable control of plant viruses in agro-ecosystem.

  5. Extracts of Renealmia alpinia (Rottb. MAAS Protect against Lethality and Systemic Hemorrhage Induced by Bothrops asper Venom: Insights from a Model with Extract Administration before Venom Injection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arley Camilo Patiño

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Renealmia alpinia (Rottb. MAAS, obtained by micropropagation (in vitro and wild forms have previously been shown to inhibit some toxic activities of Bothrops asper snake venom if preincubated before injection. In this study, assays were performed in a murine model in which extracts were administered for three days before venom injection. R. alpinia extracts inhibited lethal activity of B. asper venom injected by intraperitoneal route. Median Effective Dose (ED50 values were 36.6 ± 3.2 mg/kg and 31.7 ± 5.4 mg/kg (p > 0.05 for R. alpinia wild and in vitro extracts, respectively. At a dose of 75 mg/kg, both extracts totally inhibited the lethal activity of the venom. Moreover, this dose prolonged survival time of mice receiving a lethal dose of venom by the intravenous route. At 75 mg/kg, both extracts of R. alpinia reduced the extent of venom-induced pulmonary hemorrhage by 48.0% (in vitro extract and 34.7% (wild extract, in agreement with histological observations of lung tissue. R. alpinia extracts also inhibited hemorrhage in heart and kidneys, as evidenced by a decrease in mg of hemoglobin/g of organ. These results suggest the possibility of using R. alpinia as a prophylactic agent in snakebite, a hypothesis that needs to be further explored.

  6. Teaching Students about Biodiversity by Studying the Correlation between Plants & Arthropods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richardson, Matthew L.; Hari, Janice

    2008-01-01

    On Earth there is a huge diversity of arthropods, many of which are highly adaptive and able to exploit virtually every terrestrial habitat. Because of their prevalence even in urban environments, they make an excellent model system for any life science class. Since plants also exploit virtually every terrestrial habitat, studying the relationship…

  7. Arthropods, plants, and transmission lines in Arizona: secondary succession in a Sonoran Desert habitat

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Johnson, C.D.; Ditsworth, T.M.; Beley, J.R.

    1981-09-01

    Overall arthropod densities were low at this site, but the arthropod densities on the disturbed areas appeared to be enhanced after several years. No taxa were found to be statistically different in density between control and disturbed plots. Diversity decreased on the disturbed area after construction. Arthropod community similarity (C) was lower after construction, but C values appear to be related to presence or absence of annual herbs and grasses and not to total cover. Except for globe mallow, there were no pioneer plant species on the experimental plot. Effects of powerline construction on the experimental plant community were a brief reduction in total cover and a slight increase in cover of herbs and annual grasses. The 1976 and 1977 samples exhibit comparable cover values of these plants on both experimental and control plots. The dominant arthropod taxa on the experimental area (especially Thysanoptera, Cicadellidae, Coccinellidae, and Melyridae) appear to be responding numerically to the annual herbs and grasses which are becoming established on the plot.

  8. Characterization of the Arthropod Community Associated with Switchgrass (Poales: Poaceae) in Nebraska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.) is a perennial warm-season grass, native to the North American Great Plains. Recently, this prairie grass has received increased attention as a potential biomass energy crop. Little is known about the arthropod community affecting switchgrass grown under either mana...

  9. ABC transporters in Arthropods: genomic comparison and role in insecticide transport and resistance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dermauw, W.; Van Leeuwen, T.

    2014-01-01

    About a 100 years ago, the Drosophila white mutant marked the birth of Drosophila genetics. The white gene turned out to encode the first well studied ABC transporter in arthropods. The ABC gene family is now recognized as one of the largest transporter families in all kingdoms of life. The majority

  10. Hanadirella: A new problematic arthropod(?) from the Lower Ordovician (Llanvirn) Tabuk Formation, central Saudi Arabia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    El-Khayal, A.A.

    1985-01-01

    The new genus Hanadirella - with the type species H. bramkampi - from the Lower Ordovician (Llanvirn) of central Saudi Arabia represents a segmented organism which appears to have an arthropod affinity. The problematic genus is oval hat-shaped, less than 1 mm in diameter. Its affinity and palaeoecol

  11. Pheromone-mediated aggregation in nonsocial arthropods: an evolutionary ecological perspective

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wertheim, B.; van Baalen, E-J.A.; Dicke, M.; Vet, L.E.M.

    2005-01-01

    Although the use of aggregation pheromones has been reported for hundreds of nonsocial arthropod species, the evolutionary ecological aspects of this behavior have received little attention. Despite the elaborate literature on mechanisms, robust data on costs and benefits of aggregation pheromones a

  12. Pheromone-mediated aggregation in nonsocial arthropods : An evolutionary ecological perspective

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wertheim, B; van Baalen, EJA; Dicke, M; Vet, LEM

    2005-01-01

    Although the use of aggregation pheromones has been reported for hundreds of nonsocial arthropod species, the evolutionary ecological aspects of this behavior have received little attention. Despite the elaborate literature on mechanisms. robust data on costs and benefits of aggregation pheromones a

  13. Significance of terpenoids in induced indirect plant defence against herbivorous arthropods

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mumm, R.; Posthumus, M.A.; Dicke, M.

    2008-01-01

    Many plants respond to herbivory by arthropods with an induced emission of volatiles such as green leaf volatiles and terpenoids. These herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPVs) can attract carnivores, for example, predators and parasitoids. We investigated the significance of terpenoids in attracti

  14. Arthropod-borne flaviviruses and RNA interference : seeking new approaches for antiviral therapy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Diosa-Toro, Mayra; Urcuqui-Inchima, Silvio; Smit, Jolanda M

    2013-01-01

    Flaviviruses are the most prevalent arthropod-borne viruses worldwide, and nearly half of the 70 Flavivirus members identified are human pathogens. Despite the huge clinical impact of flaviviruses, there is no specific human antiviral therapy available to treat infection with any of the flaviviruses

  15. Removing external DNA decontamination from arthropod predators destined for molecular gut-content analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molecular gut-content analysis enables detection of arthropod predation with minimal disruption of ecosystem processes. Field and laboratory experiments have demonstrated that mass-collection methods, such as sweep-netting, vacuum sampling, and foliage beating, can lead to contamination of fed pred...

  16. Removing external DNA contamination from arthropod predators destined for molecular gut-content analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molecular gut-content analysis enables detection of arthropod predation with minimal disruption of ecosystem processes. Field and laboratory experiments have demonstrated that mass-collection methods, such as sweep-netting, vacuum sampling, and foliage beating, can lead to contamination of fed pred...

  17. Relationships between dead wood and arthropods in the Southeastern United States.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ulyshen, Michael, Darragh

    2009-05-01

    The importance of dead wood to maintaining forest diversity is now widely recognized. However, the habitat associations and sensitivities of many species associated with dead wood remain unknown, making it difficult to develop conservation plans for managed forests. The purpose of this research, conducted on the upper coastal plain of South Carolina, was to better understand the relationships between dead wood and arthropods in the southeastern United States. In a comparison of forest types, more beetle species emerged from logs collected in upland pine-dominated stands than in bottomland hardwood forests. This difference was most pronounced for Quercus nigra L., a species of tree uncommon in upland forests. In a comparison of wood postures, more beetle species emerged from logs than from snags, but a number of species appear to be dependent on snags including several canopy specialists. In a study of saproxylic beetle succession, species richness peaked within the first year of death and declined steadily thereafter. However, a number of species appear to be dependent on highly decayed logs, underscoring the importance of protecting wood at all stages of decay. In a study comparing litter-dwelling arthropod abundance at different distances from dead wood, arthropods were more abundant near dead wood than away from it. In another study, grounddwelling arthropods and saproxylic beetles were little affected by large-scale manipulations of dead wood in upland pine-dominated forests, possibly due to the suitability of the forests surrounding the plots.

  18. The Role of Dead Wood in Maintaining Arthropod Diversity on the Forest Floor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hanula, James L. [Dept. of Agriculture Forest Service, Athens, GA (United States). Southern Research Station; Horn, Scott [Dept. of Agriculture Forest Service, Athens, GA (United States). Southern Research Station; Wade, Dale D. [Dept. of Agriculture Forest Service, Athens, GA (United States). Southern Research Station

    2006-08-01

    Dead wood is a major component of forests and contributes to overall diversity, primarily by supporting insects that feed directly on or in it. Further, a variety of organisms benefit by feeding on those insects. What is not well known is how or whether dead wood influences the composition of the arthropod community that is not solely dependent on it as a food resource, or whether woody debris influences prey available to generalist predators. One group likely to be affected by dead wood is ground-dwelling arthropods. We studied the effect of adding large dead wood to unburned and frequently burned pine stands to determine if dead wood was used more when the litter and understory plant community are removed. We also studied the effect of annual removal of dead wood from large (10-ha) plots over a 5-year period on ground-dwelling arthropods. In related studies, we examined the relationships among an endangered woodpecker that forages for prey on live trees, its prey, and dead wood in the forest. Finally, the results of these and other studies show that dead wood can influence the abundance and diversity of the ground-dwelling arthropod community and of prey available to generalist predators not foraging directly on dead trees.

  19. Differential Rickettsial Transcription in Bloodfeeding and Non-Bloodfeeding Arthropod Hosts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verhoeve, Victoria I.; Jirakanwisal, Krit; Utsuki, Tadanobu; Macaluso, Kevin R.

    2016-01-01

    Crucial factors influencing the epidemiology of Rickettsia felis rickettsiosis include pathogenesis and transmission. Detection of R. felis DNA in a number of arthropod species has been reported, with characterized isolates, R. felis strain LSU and strain LSU-Lb, generated from the cat flea, Ctenocephalides felis, and the non-hematophagous booklouse, Liposcelis bostrychophila, respectively. While it is realized that strain influence on host biology varies, the rickettsial response to these distinct host environments remained undefined. To identify a panel of potential rickettsial transmission determinants in the cat flea, the transcriptional profile for these two strains of R. felis were compared in their arthropod hosts using RNAseq. Rickettsial genes with increased transcription in the flea as compared to the booklouse were identified. Genes previously associated with bacterial virulence including LPS biosynthesis, Type IV secretion system, ABC transporters, and a toxin-antitoxin system were selected for further study. Transcription of putative virulence-associated genes was determined in a flea infection bioassay for both strains of R. felis. A host-dependent transcriptional profile during bloodfeeding, specifically, an increased expression of selected transcripts in newly infected cat fleas and flea feces was detected when compared to arthropod cell culture and incubation in vertebrate blood. Together, these studies have identified novel, host-dependent rickettsial factors that likely contribute to successful horizontal transmission by bloodfeeding arthropods. PMID:27662479

  20. THE ROLE OF DEAD WOOD IN MAINTAINING ARTHROPOD DIVERSITY ON THE FOREST FLOOR.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hanula, James L.; Horn, Scott; Wade, Dale D.

    2006-08-01

    Abstract—Dead wood is a major component of forests and contributes to overall diversity, primarily by supporting insects that feed directly on or in it. Further, a variety of organisms benefit by feeding on those insects. What is not well known is how or whether dead wood influences the composition of the arthropod community that is not solely dependent on it as a food resource, or whether woody debris influences prey available to generalist predators. One group likely to be affected by dead wood is ground-dwelling arthropods. We studied the effect of adding large dead wood to unburned and frequently burned pine stands to determine if dead wood was used more when the litter and understory plant community are removed. We also studied the effect of annual removal of dead wood from large (10-ha) plots over a 5-year period on ground-dwelling arthropods. In related studies, we examined the relationships among an endangered woodpecker that forages for prey on live trees, its prey, and dead wood in the forest. The results of these and other studies show that dead wood can influence the abundance and diversity of the ground-dwelling arthropod community and of prey available to generalist predators not foraging directly on dead trees.

  1. The Hunsrück biota: A unique window into the ecology of Lower Devonian arthropods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rust, Jes; Bergmann, Alexandra; Bartels, Christoph; Schoenemann, Brigitte; Sedlmeier, Stephanie; Kühl, Gabriele

    2016-03-01

    The approximately 400-million-year old Hunsrück biota provides a unique window into Devonian marine life. Fossil evidence suggests that this biota was dominated by echinoderms and various classes of arthropods, including Trilobita, stem lineage representatives of Euarthropoda, Chelicerata and Eucrustacea, as well as several crown group Chelicerata and Eucrustacea. The Hunsrück biota's exceptional preservation allows detailed reconstructions and description of key-aspects of its fauna's functional morphologies thereby revealing modes of locomotion, sensory perception, and feeding strategies. Morphological and stratigraphic data are used for a critical interpretation of the likely habitats, mode of life and nutritional characteristics of this diverse fauna. Potential predators include pycnogonids and other chelicerates, as well as the now extinct stem arthropods Schinderhannes bartelsi, Cambronatus brasseli and Wingertshellicus backesi. Mainly the deposit feeding Trilobita, Marrellomorpha and Megacheira, such as Bundenbachiellus giganteus, represents scavengers. Possibly, opportunistic scavenging was also performed by the afore-mentioned predators. Most of the studied arthropods appear to have been adapted to living in relatively well-illuminated conditions within the photic zone. Fossil evidence for associations amongst arthropods and other classes of metazoans is reported. These associations provide evidence of likely community structures.

  2. Impact of plant invasions on local arthropod communities: a meta-analysis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Hengstum, T.; Hooftman, D.A.P.; Oostermeijer, J.G.B.; van Tienderen, P.H.

    2014-01-01

    1. Invasive plants can have a major impact on local plant and animal communities. However, effects of plant invasions on arthropod communities and the potential drivers have rarely been studied. 2. We present a meta-analysis of 56 studies on the impact of plant invasions on abundance and richness of

  3. Phylogeny of the arthropod endosymbiont Wolbachia based on the wsp gene

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meer, van M.M.M.; Witteveldt, J.; Stouthamer, R.

    1999-01-01

    Bacteria of the genus Wolbachia (Rickettsiae) are widespread in arthropods and can induce cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI), thelytoky (T) or feminization (F) in their host. Recent research on the wsp gene of mainly CI inducing Wolbachia has shown that this gene evolves at a much faster rate than pre

  4. Evolutionary genomics place the origin of Wolbachia in nematodes, not arthropods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolbachia, the most widely studied endosymbiont in arthropods, is a target for biological control of mosquito-borne diseases (malaria and dengue virus), and antibiotic elimination of infectious filarial nematodes. We sequenced and analyzed the genome of a new strain (wPpe) in the plant-parasitic nem...

  5. Peripheral and central effects of intracerebroventricular microinjection of Hottentotta gentili (Pallary, 1924) (Scorpiones, Buthidae) venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El Hidan, Moulay Abdelmonaim; Touloun, Oulaid; El Hiba, Omar; Laadraoui, Jawad; Ferehan, Hind; Boumezzough, Ali

    2016-03-01

    Central effects of scorpion venom toxins have been neglected, due both to the common belief that scorpion venoms act by targeting peripheral organs and also to the misunderstanding that these peptides do not cross the brain-blood barrier (BBB). Determining whether scorpion neurotoxicity is restricted to peripheral actions or whether a central mechanism may be partly responsible for systemic manifestations could be crucial in clinical therapy trends. The present study therefore aims to assess histopathological damages in some organs (heart, kidney, liver, and lungs) and the related biochemical impairments, together with a neurobehavioral investigation following an intracerebroventricular (i.c.v) micro-injection of Hottentotta gentili (Scorpiones, Buthidae) venom (0.47 μg/kg). I.c.v. injection of venom produced focal fragmentation of myocardial fibers, while lungs showed rupture of the alveolar structure. Concurrently, there was a significant rise in the serum enzymes levels of ASAT, ALAT, CPK and LDH. Meanwhile, we observed behavioral alterations such as a hypoactivity, and in addition the venom seems to have a marked anxiogenic-like effect. The present investigation has brought new experimental evidence of a peripheral impact of central administration of H. gentili venom, such impact was manifested by physiological and behavioral disturbances, the last of these appearing to reflect profound neuro-modulatory action of H. gentili venom.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2006-10-01

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

  7. Characterization of honeybee venom by MALDI-TOF and nanoESI-QqTOF mass spectrometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matysiak, Jan; Schmelzer, Christian E H; Neubert, Reinhard H H; Kokot, Zenon J

    2011-01-25

    The aim of the study was to comprehensively characterize different honeybee venom samples applying two complementary mass spectrometry methods. 41 honeybee venom samples of different bee strains, country of origin (Poland, Georgia, and Estonia), year and season of the venom collection were analyzed using MALDI-TOF and nanoESI-QqTOF-MS. It was possible to obtain semi-quantitative data for 12 different components in selected honeybee venom samples using MALDI-TOF method without further sophisticated and time consuming sample pretreatment. Statistical analysis (ANOVA) has shown that there are qualitative and quantitative differences in the composition between honeybee venom samples collected over different years. It has also been demonstrated that MALDI-TOF spectra can be used as a "protein fingerprint" of honeybee venom in order to confirm the identity of the product. NanoESI-QqTOF-MS was applied especially for identification purposes. Using this technique 16 peptide sequences were identified, including melittin (12 different breakdown products and precursors), apamine, mast cell degranulating peptide and secapin. Moreover, the significant achievement of this study is the fact that the new peptide (HTGAVLAGV+Amidated (C-term), M(r)=822.53Da) has been discovered in bee venom for the first time.

  8. Bee venom and its component apamin as neuroprotective agents in a Parkinson disease mouse model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Alvarez-Fischer

    Full Text Available Bee venom has recently been suggested to possess beneficial effects in the treatment of Parkinson disease (PD. For instance, it has been observed that bilateral acupoint stimulation of lower hind limbs with bee venom was protective in the acute 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP mouse model of PD. In particular, a specific component of bee venom, apamin, has previously been shown to have protective effects on dopaminergic neurons in vitro. However, no information regarding a potential protective action of apamin in animal models of PD is available to date. The specific goals of the present study were to (i establish that the protective effect of bee venom for dopaminergic neurons is not restricted to acupoint stimulation, but can also be observed using a more conventional mode of administration and to (ii demonstrate that apamin can mimic the protective effects of a bee venom treatment on dopaminergic neurons. Using the chronic mouse model of MPTP/probenecid, we show that bee venom provides sustained protection in an animal model that mimics the chronic degenerative process of PD. Apamin, however, reproduced these protective effects only partially, suggesting that other components of bee venom enhance the protective action of the peptide.

  9. Pelagia noctiluca (Scyphozoa Crude Venom Injection Elicits Oxidative Stress and Inflammatory Response in Rats

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    Giuseppe Bruschetta

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Cnidarian toxins represent a rich source of biologically active compounds. Since they may act via oxidative stress events, the aim of the present study was to verify whether crude venom, extracted from the jellyfish Pelagia noctiluca, elicits inflammation and oxidative stress processes, known to be mediated by Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS production, in rats. In a first set of experiments, the animals were injected with crude venom (at three different doses 6, 30 and 60 µg/kg, suspended in saline solution, i.v. to test the mortality and possible blood pressure changes. In a second set of experiments, to confirm that Pelagia noctiluca crude venom enhances ROS formation and may contribute to the pathophysiology of inflammation, crude venom-injected animals (30 µg/kg were also treated with tempol, a powerful antioxidant (100 mg/kg i.p., 30 and 60 min after crude venom. Administration of tempol after crude venom challenge, caused a significant reduction of each parameter related to inflammation. The potential effect of Pelagia noctiluca crude venom in the systemic inflammation process has been here demonstrated, adding novel information about its biological activity.

  10. The transcriptome recipe for the venom cocktail of Tityus bahiensis scorpion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Oliveira, Ursula Castro; Candido, Denise Maria; Dorce, Valquíria Abrão Coronado; Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio de Loiola Meirelles

    2015-03-01

    Scorpion venom is a mixture of peptides, including antimicrobial, bradykinin-potentiating and anionic peptides and small to medium proteins, such as ion channel toxins, metalloproteinases and phospholipases that together cause severe clinical manifestation. Tityus bahiensis is the second most medically important scorpion species in Brazil and it is widely distributed in the country with the exception of the North Region. Here we sequenced and analyzed the transcripts from the venom glands of T. bahiensis, aiming at identifying and annotating venom gland expressed genes. A total of 116,027 long reads were generated by pyrosequencing and assembled in 2891 isotigs. An annotation process identified transcripts by similarity to known toxins, revealing that putative venom components represent 7.4% of gene expression. The major toxins identified are potassium and sodium channel toxins, whereas metalloproteinases showed an unexpected high abundance. Phylogenetic analysis of deduced metalloproteinases from T. bahiensis and other scorpions revealed a pattern of ancient and intraspecific gene expansions. Other venom molecules identified include antimicrobial, anionic and bradykinin-potentiating peptides, besides several putative new venom components. This report provides the first attempt to massively identify the venom components of this species and constitutes one of the few transcriptomic efforts on the genus Tityus.

  11. Studies on Antivenom Activity of Ceiba pentandra Leaves’ Aqueous Methanol Extract Against Echis ocellatus’ Snake Venom

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    sarkiyayi shehu

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Aqueous methanol of Ceiba pentandra leaves extract was tested for antivenom activity against Echis ocellatus snake venom. Among parameters investigated include: LD50 of the Echis ocellatus snake venom, phospholipase A2 activity, percentage hemolysis. In vivo analysis of total protein content, white blood cells, pack cell volume and haemoglobin contents were also investigated. The result reveals that Echis ocellatus has an LD50 of 0.280mg/kg ± 0.065. Haemolysis due to venom has drastically reduced by the extract from 66% to 27.4%. suggesting that the extract is effective in reducing haemolysis in mice. The in vivo studies reveals that there were significant (p<0.05 decrease in packed cell volume, total protein and haemoglobin contents for the venom group and there was only slight changes in the venom/extract and control groups suggesting that the extract has some inhibitory effect on the venom activity. The purified phospholipase incubated with the extract demonstrated neutralization effect against the phospholipase A2 activity. The result has shown that Ceiba pentandra leaves extract possess potent snake venom-neutralizing capacity. The plant leaves extract could be use as an antidote for snakebite envenomation.

  12. Screening of plants containing Naja naja siamensis cobra venom inhibitory activity using modified ELISA technique.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daduang, Sakda; Sattayasai, Nison; Sattayasai, Jintana; Tophrom, Pattara; Thammathaworn, Achra; Chaveerach, Arunrat; Konkchaiyaphum, Monruedee

    2005-06-15

    Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) has been modified for screening plants with antagonistic activity to Naja naja siamensis cobra venom. Aqueous extracts from plants were investigated for their inhibitory effects on the binding of anti-cobra venom antibody to antigen, cobra venom, fixed onto 96-well microtiter plates. Ingredients in extracts were allowed to react with immobilized venom before the subsequent addition of antivenom antibody. Venom components affected by exposure to the extracts, unable to interact with their specific antibody, were predicted to be unable to bind to their native destinations or natural receptors. Curcuma cf. zedoaria, an old Thai medicinal plant, showed clear inhibitory activity in the ELISA test. Neurotoxin and protein degradative enzymes, major components in venom, were identified as targets of this extract in Western immunoblotting analysis. Ingredients in the extract showed high affinity to the toxin in competition assay by immunoprecipitation. The extract attenuated toxin activity by extending contraction time of diaphragm muscle after envenomation and had a potency to protect cellular proteins from venom degradative enzymes. Curcuma parviflora, with less activity in ELISA, exhibited acceptable results in two experiments but negative results in two experiments, whereas Curcuma longa, having low activity in the ELISA test, never showed any favorable results. Screening of 36 samples could classify plants into an inhibition range of 0 to 86%. This modified ELISA is recommended as a preliminary screening method for inhibitors with a large number of samples.

  13. Inflammatory events induced by brown spider venom and its recombinant dermonecrotic toxin: a pharmacological investigation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paludo, Katia Sabrina; Biscaia, Stellee Marcela Petris; Chaim, Olga Meiri; Otuki, Michel Fleith; Naliwaiko, Katya; Dombrowski, Patrícia Andréia; Franco, Célia Regina Cavichiolo; Veiga, Silvio Sanches

    2009-04-01

    Accidents involving Brown spider (Loxosceles sp.) venom produce a massive inflammatory response in injured region. This venom has a complex mixture of different toxins, and the dermonecrotic toxin is the major contributor to toxic effects. The ability of Loxosceles intermedia venom and a recombinant isoform of dermonecrotic toxin to induce edema and increase in vascular permeability was investigated. These toxins were injected into hind paws and caused a marked dose and time-dependent edema and increase in vascular permeability in mice. Furthermore, the enzymatic activity of venom toxins may be primal for these effects. A mutated recombinant isoform of dermonecrotic toxin, that has only residual enzymatic activity, was not able to induce these inflammatory events. Besides the previous heating of toxins markedly reduced the paw edema and vascular permeability showing that thermolabile constituents can trigger these effects. In addition, the ability of these venom toxins to evoke inflammatory events was partially reduced in compound 48/80-pretreated animals, suggesting that mast cells may be involved in these responses. Pretreating mice with histamine (prometazine and cetirizine) and serotonin (methysergide) receptor antagonists significantly attenuated toxins induced edema and vascular permeability. Moreover, HPLC analysis of whole venom showed the presence of histamine sufficient to induce inflammatory responses. In conclusion, these inflammatory events may result from the activation of mast cells, which in turn release bioamines and may be related to intrinsic histamine content of venom.

  14. Characterization of the venom from the spider, Araneus gemma: search for a glutamate antagonist

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Early, S.L.

    1985-01-01

    Venom from three spiders, Argiope aurantia, Neoscona arabesca, and Araneus gemma have been shown to inhibit the binding of L-(/sup 3/H)glutamate to both GBP and synaptic membranes. The venom from Araneus gemma was shown to be the most potent of the three venoms in inhibiting the binding of L-(/sup 3/H)glutamate to GBP. Therefore, Araneus gemma venom was selected for further characterization. Venom from Araneus gemma appeared to contain two factors which inhibit the binding of L-(/sup 3/H)glutamate to GBP and at least one factor that inhibits L-glutamate-stimulated /sup 35/SCN flux. Factor I is thought to be L-glutamic acid, based on: (1) its similar mobility to glutamic acid in thin-layer chromatography and amino acid analysis, (2) the presence of fingerprint molecular ion peaks for glutamate in the mass spectrum for the methanol:water (17:1) extract and for the fraction from the HPLC-purification of the crude venom, and (3) its L-glutamate-like interaction with the sodium-dependent uptake system. Factor II appears to be a polypeptide, possibly 21 amino acids in length, and does not appear to contain any free amino groups or tryptophan. While the venom does not appear to contain any indoleamines, three catecholamines (epinephrine, epinine, dopamine) and one catecholamine metabolite (DOPAC) were detected.

  15. A survey of the venom of the spider Lycosa vittata by biochemical, pharmacological and transcriptomic analyses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Fan; Liu, Changjun; Tan, Huaxin; Wang, Hengyun; Jiang, Yinjie; Liang, Songping; Zhang, Fuping; Liu, Zhonghua

    2015-12-01

    Lycosa vittata, mainly distributed in the southwest of China, is a medium-sized and venomous spider, whose venom remains unexplored so far. This study aims to present an overview of the venom. It mainly consisted of diverse peptides and exhibited inhibitory effects on voltage-gated ion channels in rat dorsal root ganglia neurons, with a strongest inhibition on tetrodotoxin-sensitive and tetrodotoxin-resistant voltage-gated Na(+) channels. Interestingly, it exerted cytotoxicity to cancer cells, with approximately 10-fold selectivity on PC-3 over others, implying the existence of selective anti-PC-3 agents in the venom. Moreover, 51 toxin-like peptides were deduced from the venom gland transcriptome. Bioinformatic analyses suggested their structures might have some distinguished properties and their predicted functions were consistent with the venom activities. This study suggests that the venom is an attractive source of neurotoxins with therapeutic significance, and provides references for the structure and function investigation of specific toxins in the future.

  16. Pulsed ultrasound therapy accelerates the recovery of skeletal muscle damage induced by Bothrops jararacussu venom

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    J. Saturnino-Oliveira

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available We studied the effect of pulsed ultrasound therapy (UST and antibothropic polyvalent antivenom (PAV on the regeneration of mouse extensor digitorum longus muscle following damage by Bothrops jararacussu venom. Animals (Swiss male and female mice weighing 25.0 ± 5.0 g; 5 animals per group received a perimuscular injection of venom (1 mg/kg and treatment with UST was started 1 h later (1 min/day, 3 MHz, 0.3 W/cm², pulsed mode. Three and 28 days after injection, muscles were dissected and processed for light microscopy. The venom caused complete degeneration of muscle fibers. UST alone and combined with PAV (1.0 mL/kg partially protected these fibers, whereas muscles receiving no treatment showed disorganized fascicules and fibers with reduced diameter. Treatment with UST and PAV decreased the effects of the venom on creatine kinase content and motor activity (approximately 75 and 48%, respectively. Sonication of the venom solution immediately before application decreased the in vivo and ex vivo myotoxic activities (approximately 60 and 50%, respectively. The present data show that UST counteracts some effects of B. jararacussu venom, causing structural and functional improvement of the regenerated muscle after venom injury.

  17. Antivenom potential of ethanolic extract of Cordia macleodii bark against Naja venom

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Pranay Soni; Surendra H. Bodakhe

    2014-01-01

    Objective: To evaluate the antivenom potential of ethanolic extract of bark of Cordia macleodii against Naja venom induced pharmacological effects such as lethality, hemorrhagic lesion, necrotizing lesion, edema, cardiotoxicity and neurotoxicity.Methods:Wistar strain rats were challenged with Naja venom and treated with the ethanolic extract of Cordia macleodii bark. The effectiveness of the extract to neutralize the lethalities ofNaja venom was investigated as recommended by WHO. Results: At the dose of 400 and 800 mg/kg ethanolic extract of Cordia macleodii bark significantly inhibited the Naja venom induced lethality, hemorrhagic lesion, necrotizing lesion and edema in rats. Ethanolic extract of Cordia macleodii bark was effective in neutralizing the coagulant and defibrinogenating activity of Naja venom. The cardiotoxic effects in isolated frog heart and neurotoxic activity studies on frog rectus abdominus muscle were also antagonized by ethanolic extract of Cordia macleodii bark.Conclusions:It is concluded that the protective effect of extract of Cordia macleodii against Naja venom poisoning may be mediated by the cardiotonic, proteolysin neutralization, anti-inflammatory, antiserotonic and antihistaminic activity. It is possible that the protective effect may also be due to precipitation of active venom constituents.

  18. The effects of low-level laser on muscle damage caused by Bothrops neuwiedi venom

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    DM Dourado

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The present study aimed to assess the effects of low-level laser (660 nm on myonecrosis caused by the insertion of Bothrops neuwiedi venom in the gastrocnemius muscle of rats. Male Wistar rats were divided into three groups (n = 24 each: Group S (0.9% saline solution; Group V (venom and Group VLLL (venom plus low-level laser. These categories were subdivided into four additional groups (n = 6 based on the euthanasia timing (3 hours, 24 hours, 3 days and 7 days. The groups V and VLLL were inoculated with 100 µL of concentrated venom (40 µg/mL in the gastrocnemius muscle. The muscle was irradiated using a gallium-aluminum-arsenide laser (GaAlAs at 35 mW power and 4 J/cm² energy density for 3 hours, 24 hours, 3 days or 7 days after venom inoculation. To evaluate the myotoxic activity of the venom, CK activity was measured and the muscle was histologically analyzed. The low-level laser reduced venom-induced CK activity in the groups euthanized at 3 hours, 24 hours and 3 days (p < 0.0001. Histological analysis revealed that low-level laser reduced neutrophilic inflammation as well as myofibrillar edema, hemorrhage and myonecrosis following B. neuwiedi envenomation. These results suggest that low-level laser can be useful as an adjunct therapy following B. neuwiedi envenomation.

  19. The effects of low-level laser on muscle damage caused by Bothrops neuwiedi venom

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dourado, D.M.; Matias, R.; Almeida, M.F.; Paula, K.R. de; Carvalho, P.T.C. [University for the Development of the State and of the Region of Pantanal (UNIDERP), Campo Grande, MS (Brazil). Lab. of Experimental Histopathology]. E-mail: ccfi@uniderp.br; Vieira, R.P. [University of Sao Paulo (USP), SP (Brazil). School of Medicine. Dept. of Pathology and Physical Therapy; Oliveira, L.V.F. [Nove de Julho University (UNINOVE), Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil). Masters Program in Rehabilitation Sciences

    2008-07-01

    The present study aimed to assess the effects of low-level laser (660 nm) on myonecrosis caused by the insertion of Bothrops neuwiedi venom in the gastrocnemius muscle of rats. Male Wistar rats were divided into three groups (n = 24 each): Group S (0.9% saline solution); Group V (venom) and Group VLLL (venom plus low-level laser). These categories were subdivided into four additional groups (n = 6) based on the euthanasia timing (3 hours, 24 hours, 3 days and 7 days). The groups V and VLLL were inoculated with 100 {mu}L of concentrated venom (40 {mu}g/mL) in the gastrocnemius muscle. The muscle was irradiated using a gallium-aluminum-arsenide laser (GaAlAs) at 35 mW power and 4 J/cm{sup 2} energy density for 3 hours, 24 hours, 3 days or 7 days after venom inoculation. To evaluate the myotoxic activity of the venom, CK activity was measured and the muscle was histologically analyzed. The low-level laser reduced venom-induced CK activity in the groups euthanized at 3 hours, 24 hours and 3 days (p < 0.0001). Histological analysis revealed that low-level laser reduced neutrophilic inflammation as well as myofibrillar edema, hemorrhage and myonecrosis following B. neuwiedi envenomation. These results suggest that low-level laser can be useful as an adjunct therapy following B. neuwiedi envenomation. (author)

  20. Local inflammation, lethality and cytokine release in mice injected with Bothrops atrox venom

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    S. F. Barros

    1998-01-01

    Full Text Available We have provided evidence that: (a lethality of mice to crude Bothrops venom varies according the isogenic strain (A/J > C57Bl/6 > A/Sn > BALB/c > C3H/ HePas > DBA/2 > C3H/He; (bBALB/c mice (LD50=100.0 μg were injected i.p. with 50 μg of venom produced IL-6, IL-10, INF-γ, TNF-α and NO in the serum. In vitro the cells from the mice injected and challenged with the venom only released IL-10 while peritoneal macrophages released IL-10, INF-γ and less amounts of IL-6; (c establishment of local inflammation and necrosis induced by the venom, coincides with the peaks of TNF-α, IFN-γ and NO and the damage was neutralized when the venom was incubated with a monoclonal antibody against a 60 kDa haemorrhagic factor. These results suggest that susceptibility to Bothrops a trox venom is genetically dependent but MHC independent; that IL-6, IL10, TNF-α, IFN-γ and NO can be involved in the mediation of tissue damage; and that the major venom component inducers of the lesions are haemorrhagins.

  1. New approaches & technologies of venomics to meet the challenge of human envenoming by snakebites in India

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    David A Warrell

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The direct estimate of 46,000 snakebite deaths in India in 2005 (1 for every 2 HIV/AIDS deaths, based on verbal autopsies, renders unrealistic the total of only 47,000 snakebite deaths in the whole world in 2010, obtained indirectly as part of the "Global Burden of Disease 2010" study. Persistent underestimation of its true morbidity and mortality has made snakebite the most neglected of all the WHO′s "neglected tropical diseases", downgrading its public health importance. Strategies to address this neglect should include the improvement of antivenom, the only specific antidote to envenoming. To accommodate increased understanding of geographical intraspecific variation in venom composition and the range of snake species that are medically important in India, the design of antivenoms (choice of venom sources and species coverage should be reconsidered. Methods of preclinical and clinical testing should be improved. The relatively new science of venomics involves techniques and strategies for assessing the toxin composition of snake venoms directly through proteomics-centred approaches or indirectly via high-throughput venom gland transcriptomics and bioinformatic analysis. Antivenomics is translational venomics: a proteomics-based protocol to quantify the extent of cross-reactivity of antivenoms against homologous and heterologous venoms. These approaches could revolutionize the preclinical assessment of antivenom efficacy, leading to a new generation of antivenoms that are clinically more effective.

  2. Management of venomous snakebites in dogs and cats in Brazil

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    R.S. Ferreira Júnior

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Snake envenoming is a major problem both to veterinary and human medicine in tropical countries due to high incidence, severity, and sequelae. In Brazil, most envenomings involving animals are caused by Bothrops and Crotalus snakes; these are the highest risk to animals. This study reports on Bothrops and Crotalus envenomings in dogs, the main species responsible for epidemiology, pathogenesis, venom action, clinical signs, sequelae and complications, clinical pathology, necropsy findings, diagnosis, and treatment. Veterinarians must be capable of identifying the snake not only by observing its characteristics but also symptom evolution.

  3. Transcriptome and venom proteome of the box jellyfish Chironex fleckeri

    OpenAIRE

    2015-01-01

    Background The box jellyfish, Chironex fleckeri, is the largest and most dangerous cubozoan jellyfish to humans. It produces potent and rapid-acting venom and its sting causes severe localized and systemic effects that are potentially life-threatening. In this study, a combined transcriptomic and proteomic approach was used to identify C. fleckeri proteins that elicit toxic effects in envenoming. Results More than 40,000,000 Illumina reads were used to de novo assemble ∼ 34,000 contiguous cDN...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  5. Venom of the ectoparasitoid, Nasonia vitripennis, influences gene expression in Musca domestica hemocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qian, Cen; Liu, Yang; Fang, Qi; Min-Li, Yan; Liu, Shu-Sheng; Ye, Gong-Yin; Li, Yan-Min

    2013-08-01

    Insect hosts have evolved potent innate immunity against invasion by parasitoid wasps. Host/parasitoids live in co-evolutionary relationships. Nasonia vitripennis females inject venom into their dipteran hosts just prior to laying eggs on the host's outer integument. The parasitoid larvae are ectoparasitoids because they feed on their hosts within the puparium, but do not enter the host body. We investigated the influence of N. vitripennis venom on the gene expression profile of hemocytes of their hosts, pupae of the housefly, Musca domestica. We prepared venom by isolating venom glands and treated experimental host pupae with venom. We used suppression subtractive hybridization (SSH) to determine the influence of venom on hemocyte gene expression. At 1 h post treatment, we recorded decreases in transcript levels of 133 EST clones derived from forward a subtractive library of host hemocytes and upregulation in transcript levels of 111 EST clones from the reverse library. These genes are related to immune and stress response, cytoskeleton, cell cycle and apoptosis, metabolism, transport, and transcription/translation regulation. We verified the reliability of our data with reverse transcription quantitative real-time PCR analysis of randomly selected genes, and with assays of enzyme activities. These analyses showed that the expression level of all selected genes were downregulated after venom treatment. Outcomes of our experiments support the hypothesis that N. vitripennis venom influences the gene expression in host hemocytes. We conclude that the actions of venom on host gene expression influence host biology in ways that benefit the development and emergence of the next generation of parasitoids.

  6. Risk associated with bee venom therapy: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

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    Jeong Hwan Park

    Full Text Available The safety of bee venom as a therapeutic compound has been extensively studied, resulting in the identification of potential adverse events, which range from trivial skin reactions that usually resolve over several days to life-threating severe immunological responses such as anaphylaxis. In this systematic review, we provide a summary of the types and prevalence of adverse events associated with bee venom therapy.We searched the literature using 12 databases from their inception to June 2014, without language restrictions. We included all types of clinical studies in which bee venom was used as a key intervention and adverse events that may have been causally related to bee venom therapy were reported.A total of 145 studies, including 20 randomized controlled trials, 79 audits and cohort studies, 33 single-case studies, and 13 case series, were evaluated in this review. The median frequency of patients who experienced adverse events related to venom immunotherapy was 28.87% (interquartile range, 14.57-39.74 in the audit studies. Compared with normal saline injection, bee venom acupuncture showed a 261% increased relative risk for the occurrence of adverse events (relative risk, 3.61; 95% confidence interval, 2.10 to 6.20 in the randomized controlled trials, which might be overestimated or underestimated owing to the poor reporting quality of the included studies.Adverse events related to bee venom therapy are frequent; therefore, practitioners of bee venom therapy should be cautious when applying it in daily clinical practice, and the practitioner's education and qualifications regarding the use of bee venom therapy should be ensured.

  7. In vivo analysis of effects of venom from the jellyfish Chrysaora sp. in zebrafish (Danio rerio).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becerra-Amezcua, Mayra P; Guerrero-Legarreta, Isabel; González-Márquez, Humberto; Guzmán-García, Xochitl

    2016-04-01

    The jellyfishes of the genus Chrysaora are present in all of the world's oceans, but the toxicity of their venoms has not yet been thoroughly characterized. The zebrafish as a toxicology model can be used for general toxicity testing of drugs and the investigation of toxicological mechanisms. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of crude venom from jellyfish Chrysaora sp., a species of jellyfish observed in the tropical lagoons of the Gulf of Mexico, on the zebrafish Danio rerio. Juvenile zebrafish were injected with different concentrations of venom from Chrysaora sp. via intraperitoneal and subcutaneous injections.