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Sample records for venoms structure function

  1. Minor snake venom proteins: Structure, function and potential applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boldrini-França, Johara; Cologna, Camila Takeno; Pucca, Manuela Berto; Bordon, Karla de Castro Figueiredo; Amorim, Fernanda Gobbi; Anjolette, Fernando Antonio Pino; Cordeiro, Francielle Almeida; Wiezel, Gisele Adriano; Cerni, Felipe Augusto; Pinheiro-Junior, Ernesto Lopes; Shibao, Priscila Yumi Tanaka; Ferreira, Isabela Gobbo; de Oliveira, Isadora Sousa; Cardoso, Iara Aimê; Arantes, Eliane Candiani

    2017-04-01

    Snake venoms present a great diversity of pharmacologically active compounds that may be applied as research and biotechnological tools, as well as in drug development and diagnostic tests for certain diseases. The most abundant toxins have been extensively studied in the last decades and some of them have already been used for different purposes. Nevertheless, most of the minor snake venom protein classes remain poorly explored, even presenting potential application in diverse areas. The main difficulty in studying these proteins lies on the impossibility of obtaining sufficient amounts of them for a comprehensive investigation. The advent of more sensitive techniques in the last few years allowed the discovery of new venom components and the in-depth study of some already known minor proteins. This review summarizes information regarding some structural and functional aspects of low abundant snake venom proteins classes, such as growth factors, hyaluronidases, cysteine-rich secretory proteins, nucleases and nucleotidases, cobra venom factors, vespryns, protease inhibitors, antimicrobial peptides, among others. Some potential applications of these molecules are discussed herein in order to encourage researchers to explore the full venom repertoire and to discover new molecules or applications for the already known venom components. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  2. Structures and Functions of Snake Venom Metalloproteinases (SVMP) from Protobothrops venom Collected in Japan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oyama, Etsuko; Takahashi, Hidenobu

    2017-08-04

    Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMP) are widely distributed among the venoms of Crotalinae and Viperidae, and are organized into three classes (P-I, P-II and P-III) according to their size and domain structure. P-I SVMP are the smallest SVMP, as they only have a metalloproteinase (M) domain. P-II SVMP contain a disintegrin-like (D) domain, which is connected by a short spacer region to the carboxyl terminus of the M domain. P-III SVMP contain a cysteine-rich (C) domain, which is attached to the carboxyl terminus of the D domain. Some SVMP exhibit hemorrhagic activity, whereas others do not. In addition, SVMP display fibrinolytic/fibrinogenolytic (FL) activity, and the physiological functions of SVMP are controlled by their structures. Furthermore, these proteinases also demonstrate fibrinogenolytic and proteolytic activity against synthetic substrates for matrix metalloproteinases and ADAM (a disintegrin and metalloproteinase). This article describes the structures and FL, hemorrhagic, and platelet aggregation-inhibiting activity of SVMP derived from Protobothrops snake venom that was collected in Japan.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2008-02-01

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

  4. Acid-sensing ion channel (ASIC) structure and function: Insights from spider, snake and sea anemone venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cristofori-Armstrong, Ben; Rash, Lachlan D

    2017-12-01

    Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) are proton-activated cation channels that are expressed in a variety of neuronal and non-neuronal tissues. As proton-gated channels, they have been implicated in many pathophysiological conditions where pH is perturbed. Venom derived compounds represent the most potent and selective modulators of ASICs described to date, and thus have been invaluable as pharmacological tools to study ASIC structure, function, and biological roles. There are now ten ASIC modulators described from animal venoms, with those from snakes and spiders favouring ASIC1, while the sea anemones preferentially target ASIC3. Some modulators, such as the prototypical ASIC1 modulator PcTx1 have been studied in great detail, while some of the newer members of the club remain largely unstudied. Here we review the current state of knowledge on venom derived ASIC modulators, with a particular focus on their molecular interaction with ASICs, what they have taught us about channel structure, and what they might still reveal about ASIC function and pathophysiological roles. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'Venom-derived Peptides as Pharmacological Tools.' Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Structural and functional characterization of a novel homodimeric three-finger neurotoxin from the venom of Ophiophagus hannah (king cobra).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roy, Amrita; Zhou, Xingding; Chong, Ming Zhi; D'hoedt, Dieter; Foo, Chun Shin; Rajagopalan, Nandhakishore; Nirthanan, Selvanayagam; Bertrand, Daniel; Sivaraman, J; Kini, R Manjunatha

    2010-03-12

    Snake venoms are a mixture of pharmacologically active proteins and polypeptides that have led to the development of molecular probes and therapeutic agents. Here, we describe the structural and functional characterization of a novel neurotoxin, haditoxin, from the venom of Ophiophagus hannah (King cobra). Haditoxin exhibited novel pharmacology with antagonism toward muscle (alphabetagammadelta) and neuronal (alpha(7), alpha(3)beta(2), and alpha(4)beta(2)) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) with highest affinity for alpha(7)-nAChRs. The high resolution (1.5 A) crystal structure revealed haditoxin to be a homodimer, like kappa-neurotoxins, which target neuronal alpha(3)beta(2)- and alpha(4)beta(2)-nAChRs. Interestingly however, the monomeric subunits of haditoxin were composed of a three-finger protein fold typical of curaremimetic short-chain alpha-neurotoxins. Biochemical studies confirmed that it existed as a non-covalent dimer species in solution. Its structural similarity to short-chain alpha-neurotoxins and kappa-neurotoxins notwithstanding, haditoxin exhibited unique blockade of alpha(7)-nAChRs (IC(50) 180 nm), which is recognized by neither short-chain alpha-neurotoxins nor kappa-neurotoxins. This is the first report of a dimeric short-chain alpha-neurotoxin interacting with neuronal alpha(7)-nAChRs as well as the first homodimeric three-finger toxin to interact with muscle nAChRs.

  6. Production of recombinant disulfide-rich venom peptides for structural and functional analysis via expression in the periplasm of E. coli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julie K Klint

    Full Text Available Disulfide-rich peptides are the dominant component of most animal venoms. These peptides have received much attention as leads for the development of novel therapeutic agents and bioinsecticides because they target a wide range of neuronal receptors and ion channels with a high degree of potency and selectivity. In addition, their rigid disulfide framework makes them particularly well suited for addressing the crucial issue of in vivo stability. Structural and functional characterization of these peptides necessitates the development of a robust, reliable expression system that maintains their native disulfide framework. The bacterium Escherichia coli has long been used for economical production of recombinant proteins. However, the expression of functional disulfide-rich proteins in the reducing environment of the E. coli cytoplasm presents a significant challenge. Thus, we present here an optimised protocol for the expression of disulfide-rich venom peptides in the periplasm of E. coli, which is where the endogenous machinery for production of disulfide-bonds is located. The parameters that have been investigated include choice of media, induction conditions, lysis methods, methods of fusion protein and peptide purification, and sample preparation for NMR studies. After each section a recommendation is made for conditions to use. We demonstrate the use of this method for the production of venom peptides ranging in size from 2 to 8 kDa and containing 2-6 disulfide bonds.

  7. The putative serine protease inhibitor Api m 6 from Apis mellifera venom: recombinant and structural evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michel, Y; McIntyre, M; Ginglinger, H; Ollert, M; Cifuentes, L; Blank, S; Spillner, E

    2012-01-01

    Immunoglobulin (Ig) E-mediated reactions to honeybee venom can cause severe anaphylaxis, sometimes with fatal consequences. Detailed knowledge of the allergic potential of all venom components is necessary to ensure proper diagnosis and treatment of allergy and to gain a better understanding of the allergological mechanisms of insect venoms. Our objective was to undertake an immunochemical and structural evaluation of the putative low-molecular-weight serine protease inhibitor Api m 6, a component of honeybee venom. We recombinantly produced Api m 6 as a soluble protein in Escherichia coli and in Spodoptera frugiperda (Sf9) insect cells.We also assessed specific IgE reactivity of venom-sensitized patients with 2 prokaryotically produced Api m 6 variants using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Moreover, we built a structural model ofApi m 6 and compared it with other protease inhibitor structures to gain insights into the function of Api m 6. In a population of 31 honeybee venom-allergic patients, 26% showed specific IgE reactivity with prokaryotically produced Api m 6, showing it to be a minor but relevant allergen. Molecular modeling of Api m 6 revealed a typical fold of canonical protease inhibitors, supporting the putative function of this venom allergen. Although Api m 6 has a highly variant surface charge, its epitope distribution appears to be similar to that of related proteins. Api m 6 is a honeybee venom component with IgE-sensitizing potential in a fraction of venom-allergic patients. Recombinant Api m 6 can help elucidate individual component-resolved reactivity profiles and increase our understanding of immune responses to low-molecular-weight allergens

  8. Identification of a moronecidin-like antimicrobial peptide in the venomous fish Pterois volitans: Functional and structural study of pteroicidin-α.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Houyvet, Baptiste; Bouchon-Navaro, Yolande; Bouchon, Claude; Goux, Didier; Bernay, Benoît; Corre, Erwan; Zatylny-Gaudin, Céline

    2018-01-01

    The present study characterizes for the first time an antimicrobial peptide in lionfish (Pterois volitans), a venomous fish. Using a peptidomic approach, we identified a mature piscidin in lionfish and called it pteroicidin-α. We detected an amidated form (pteroicidin-α- CONH 2 ) and a non-amidated form (pteroicidin-α-COOH), and then performed their functional and structural study. Interestingly, the two peptides displayed different antibacterial and hemolytic activity levels. Pteroicidin-α-CONH 2 was bactericidal on human pathogens like Staphylococcus aureus or Escherichia coli, as well as on the fish pathogen Aeromonas salmonicida, while pteroicidin-α-COOH only inhibited their growth. Furthermore, the two peptides induced hemolysis of red blood cells from different vertebrates, namely humans, sea bass and lesser-spotted dogfish. Hemolysis occurred with low concentrations of pteroicidin-α-CONH 2 , indicating greater toxicity of the amidated form. Circular dichroism analysis showed that both peptides adopted a helical conformation, yet with a greater α-helix content in pteroicidin-α-CONH 2 . Overall, these results suggest that amidation strongly influences pteroicidin-α by modifying its structure and its physico-chemical characteristics and by increasing its hemolytic activity. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Histopathological and ultrastructural changes experimentally induced by bee venom in seminiferous epithelium via structural-functional alteration of Sertoli cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Florea, Adrian; Puică, Constantin; Hamed, Sami; Tilinca, Mariana; Matei, Horea

    2017-11-01

    We tested here the ability of bee venom (BV) to interfere with spermatogenesis in rats in two experimental conditions. The histopathological changes were assessed with brightfield microscopy using a novel staining technique, based on methylene blue, orange G and ponceau xylidine. Transmission electron microscopy was also used to identify fine subcellular changes. BV injection for 30days in daily doses of 700μg BV/kg resulted in reducing testicular weight, along with significant larger diameters of seminiferous tubules and reduced number of Sertoli cells (SCs). SCs were vacuolated, detached from the basement membrane, many necrosed, leading to the basement membrane denudation. Germ cells layers were separated by empty spaces conferring a rarefied aspect to the tissue, and spermatids were detached into lumen. Thus, the seminiferous epithelium was significantly thinned. Many Leydig cells (LCs) were in a necrotic state, with disrupted plasma membrane and without smooth endoplasmic reticulum. The acute treatment with a single LD50 of 62mgBV/kg, was followed by focal disruptions of the basement membrane and localized areas of necrosis, mainly affecting the SCs. Most of the observed SCs as well as some spermatogonia were highly vacuoled, empty spaces being observed within the epithelium. The SCs count was significantly decreased. Spermatids had also the tendency of separation from the SCs, and the significant larger diameter of the tubules found was associated with a thicker epithelium. Many LCs were necrosed, with disrupted plasma membrane, swollen mitochondria, no endoplasmic reticulum and implicitly showing rarefied cytoplasm. We concluded that BV was a testicular toxicant affecting both the LCs and the seminiferous tubules. The SCs cells represented the primary target site of BV whose effects were next extended upon the germ cells. In all cells, BV triggered unspecific degenerative changes that could impaire spermatogenesis. The present study also proposes an

  10. Functional Morphology of Venom Apparatus of Euscorpius mingrelicus(Scorpiones: Euscorpiidae)

    OpenAIRE

    YİĞİT, Nazife; BAYRAM, Abdullah; DANIŞMAN, Tarık

    2007-01-01

    The objective of the present study is to describe the functional morphology of venom apparatus of Euscorpius mingrelicus (Kessler, 1874) by using light microscope and scanning electron microscope (SEM). The venom apparatus, situates in the last segment of metasoma (telson), is composed of a pair of venom glands and sting. Telson is covered by cuticular exoskeleton as well as all body, and there are cuticular setae and pits on it as serve sensory organ. The general organization of the venom ap...

  11. Cabinet of Curiosities: Venom Systems and Their Ecological Function in Mammals, with a Focus on Primates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rode-Margono, Johanna E; Nekaris, K Anne-Isola

    2015-07-17

    Venom delivery systems (VDS) are common in the animal kingdom, but rare amongst mammals. New definitions of venom allow us to reconsider its diversity amongst mammals by reviewing the VDS of Chiroptera, Eulipotyphla, Monotremata, and Primates. All orders use modified anterior dentition as the venom delivery apparatus, except Monotremata, which possesses a crural system. The venom gland in most taxa is a modified submaxillary salivary gland. In Primates, the saliva is activated when combined with brachial gland exudate. In Monotremata, the crural spur contains the venom duct. Venom functions include feeding, intraspecific competition, anti-predator defense and parasite defense. Including mammals in discussion of venom evolution could prove vital in our understanding protein functioning in mammals and provide a new avenue for biomedical and therapeutic applications and drug discovery.

  12. Influence of radiation on structure of Venom Vipera Lebetina Obtusa

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Topchiyeva, Sh.A; Abiyev, H.A; Magerramov, A.

    2006-01-01

    Full text: Snake venoms are unique biologically active polymers of an animal origin. Though in the global literature the data are resulted on researching of zoo toxins, however many questions still remain not mentioned and need deep analysis and studying. Many questions on influence of small dozes gamma-radiation and other kinds ionization radiations on an alive organism remain open. These questions are important for technology of radiating sterilization of medical products, finding-out of the mechanism of additively and synergism, estimations of radio-ecological risk at influences of small dozes gamma-radiation on structure and dynamics of development of various biological and organic systems. In connection with special biochemical and preparations of venoms vipers and for an estimation of ecological factors (in particular, biotic, an electromagnetic field, gamma-radiation, solar radiation) on its properties we investigated influence gamma-radiation 6 0Co on structure at low temperatures. At low temperatures researches and at revealing prostrations effects in organic and biological systems of an organism from effective methods is radiotermoluminence.The method of radiotermoluminence will allow to receive data on structural properties of system, on the centers of stabilization of charges of initial products radials venom, about ways of migration of energy absorbed at an irradiation and so on. Samples on venom were irradiated in special a ditch with scales-beams at 77K up to dozes of %5 kGr. Before an irradiation samples were cleared of traces of oxygen. The irradiation was spent on air and in vacuum. Curves lighting registered with a speed gamma 50/1.min. It is shown, that in an interval of temperatures 77-330K the curve lighting radiotermoluminendce venom of vipers irradiated at 77K up to dozes 3 kGr is characterized not by a symmetric maximum at temperature 172K. Warming up to temperatures 320K results in monotonous decrease of intensity of a luminescence. It is

  13. Influence of radiation on structure of venom vipera lebetina obtusa

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Topchiyeva, Sh.A.; Abiyev, H.A.; Magerramov, A.

    2006-01-01

    Full text: Snake venoms are unique biologically active polymers of an animal origin. Though in the global literature the data are resulted on researching of zootoxins, however many questions still remain not mentioned and need deep analysis and studying. Many questions on influence of small dozes - radiation and other kinds ionization radiations on an alive organism remain open. These questions are important for technology of radiating sterilization of medical products, finding-out of the mechanism of additivity and sinergizm, estimations of radio-ecological risk at influences of small dozes - radiation on structure and dynamics of development of various biological and organic systems. In connection with special biochemical and preparations properties of venoms viperas and for an estimation of ecological factors (in particular, abiotics, an electromagnetic field, -radiation, solar radiation) on its properties we investigate influence - radiation n-tildei-circumflex 60 on structure at low temperatures. At low temperatures researches and at revealing postrations' effects in organic and biological systems of an organism from effective methods is radiotermoluminence. The method of radiotermoluminence will allow to receive data on structural properties of system, on the centers of stabilization of charges of initial products radiolis venom, about ways of migration of energy absorbed at an irradiation and so on. Samples of venom were irradiated in special a ditch with scales - beams at 77 E-tilde up to dozes of percent 5 e-tildeGr. Before an irradiation samples were cleared of traces of oxygen. The irradiation was spent on air and in vacuum. Curves lighting registered with a speed ∼ 50/l.min. It is shown, that in an interval of temperatures 77-330 E-tilde the curve lighting radiotermoluminence venom of viperas irradiated at 77 E-tilde up to dozes 3 ?Gr is characterized not by a symmetric maximum at temperature 172 E-tilde. Warming up up to temperatures 320E

  14. A structural homologue of colipase in black mamba venom revealed by NMR floating disulphide bridge analysis.

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    Boisbouvier, J; Albrand, J P; Blackledge, M; Jaquinod, M; Schweitz, H; Lazdunski, M; Marion, D

    1998-01-01

    The solution structure of mamba intestinal toxin 1 (MIT1), isolated from Dendroaspis polylepis polylepis venom, has been determined. This molecule is a cysteine-rich polypeptide exhibiting no recognised family membership. Resistance to MIT1 to classical specific endoproteases produced contradictory NMR and biochemical information concerning disulphide-bridge topology. We have used distance restraints allowing ambiguous partners between S atoms in combination with NMR-derived structural information, to correctly determine the disulphide-bridge topology. The resultant solution structure of MIT1, determined to a resolution of 0.5 A, reveals an unexpectedly similar global fold with respect to colipase, a protein involved in fatty acid digestion. Colipase exhibits an analogous resistance to endoprotease activity, indicating for the first time the possible topological origins of this biochemical property. The biochemical and structural homology permitted us to propose a mechanically related digestive function for MIT1 and provides novel information concerning snake venom protein evolution. Copyright 1998 Academic Press.

  15. Purification and functional characterisation of rhiminopeptidase A, a novel aminopeptidase from the venom of Bitis gabonica rhinoceros.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sakthivel Vaiyapuri

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Snake bite is a major neglected public health issue within poor communities living in the rural areas of several countries throughout the world. An estimated 2.5 million people are bitten by snakes each year and the cost and lack of efficacy of current anti-venom therapy, together with the lack of detailed knowledge about toxic components of venom and their modes of action, and the unavailability of treatments in rural areas mean that annually there are around 125,000 deaths worldwide. In order to develop cheaper and more effective therapeutics, the toxic components of snake venom and their modes of action need to be clearly understood. One particularly poorly understood component of snake venom is aminopeptidases. These are exo-metalloproteases, which, in mammals, are involved in important physiological functions such as the maintenance of blood pressure and brain function. Although aminopeptidase activities have been reported in some snake venoms, no detailed analysis of any individual snake venom aminopeptidases has been performed so far. As is the case for mammals, snake venom aminopeptidases may also play important roles in altering the physiological functions of victims during envenomation. In order to further understand this important group of snake venom enzymes we have isolated, functionally characterised and analysed the sequence-structure relationships of an aminopeptidase from the venom of the large, highly venomous West African gaboon viper, Bitis gabonica rhinoceros.The venom of B. g. rhinoceros was fractionated by size exclusion chromatography and fractions with aminopeptidase activities were isolated. Fractions with aminopeptidase activities showed a pure protein with a molecular weight of 150 kDa on SDS-PAGE. In the absence of calcium, this purified protein had broad aminopeptidase activities against acidic, basic and neutral amino acids but in the presence of calcium, it had only acidic aminopeptidase activity (APA. Together

  16. SjAPI, the first functionally characterized Ascaris-type protease inhibitor from animal venoms.

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    Zongyun Chen

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Serine protease inhibitors act as modulators of serine proteases, playing important roles in protecting animal toxin peptides from degradation. However, all known serine protease inhibitors discovered thus far from animal venom belong to the Kunitz-type subfamily, and whether there are other novel types of protease inhibitors in animal venom remains unclear. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here, by screening scorpion venom gland cDNA libraries, we identified the first Ascaris-type animal toxin family, which contains four members: Scorpiops jendeki Ascaris-type protease inhibitor (SjAPI, Scorpiops jendeki Ascaris-type protease inhibitor 2 (SjAPI-2, Chaerilus tricostatus Ascaris-type protease inhibitor (CtAPI, and Buthus martensii Ascaris-type protease inhibitor (BmAPI. The detailed characterization of Ascaris-type peptide SjAPI from the venom gland of scorpion Scorpiops jendeki was carried out. The mature peptide of SjAPI contains 64 residues and possesses a classical Ascaris-type cysteine framework reticulated by five disulfide bridges, different from all known protease inhibitors from venomous animals. Enzyme and inhibitor reaction kinetics experiments showed that recombinant SjAPI was a dual function peptide with α-chymotrypsin- and elastase-inhibiting properties. Recombinant SjAPI inhibited α-chymotrypsin with a Ki of 97.1 nM and elastase with a Ki of 3.7 μM, respectively. Bioinformatics analyses and chimera experiments indicated that SjAPI contained the unique short side chain functional residues "AAV" and might be a useful template to produce new serine protease inhibitors. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: To our knowledge, SjAPI is the first functionally characterized animal toxin peptide with an Ascaris-type fold. The structural and functional diversity of animal toxins with protease-inhibiting properties suggested that bioactive peptides from animal venom glands might be a new source of protease inhibitors, which will accelerate the

  17. Crystal structure of a snake venom cardiotoxin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1987-01-01

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

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

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

    2015-01-01

    Extant disintegrins, as found in the venoms of Viperidae and Crotalidae snakes (vipers and rattlesnakes, represent a family of polypeptides that block the function of β1 and β3 integrin receptors, both potently and with a high degree of selectivity. This toxin family owes its origin to the neofunctionalization of the extracellular region of an ADAM (a disintegrin and metalloprotease) molecule recruited into the snake venom gland proteome in the Jurassic. The evolutionary structural diversification of the disintegrin scaffold, from the ancestral long disintegrins to the more recently evolved medium-sized, dimeric and short disintegrins, involved the stepwise loss of pairs of class-specific disulfide linkages and the processing of the N-terminal region. NMR and crystal structures of medium-sized, dimeric and short disintegrins have been solved. However, the structure of a long disintegrin remained unknown. The present study reports the NMR solution structures of two disulfide bond conformers of the long disintegrin bitistatin from the African puff adder Bitis arietans. The findings provide insight into how a structural domain of the extracellular region of an ADAM molecule, recruited into and selectively expressed in the snake venom gland proteome as a PIII metalloprotease in the Jurassic, has subsequently been tranformed into a family of integrin receptor antagonists. © 2014 FEBS.

  19. Functional proteomic analyses of Bothrops atrox venom reveals phenotypes associated with habitat variation in the Amazon.

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    Sousa, Leijiane F; Portes-Junior, José A; Nicolau, Carolina A; Bernardoni, Juliana L; Nishiyama, Milton Y; Amazonas, Diana R; Freitas-de-Sousa, Luciana A; Mourão, Rosa Hv; Chalkidis, Hipócrates M; Valente, Richard H; Moura-da-Silva, Ana M

    2017-04-21

    Venom variability is commonly reported for venomous snakes including Bothrops atrox. Here, we compared the composition of venoms from B. atrox snakes collected at Amazonian conserved habitats (terra-firme upland forest and várzea) and human modified areas (pasture and degraded areas). Venom samples were submitted to shotgun proteomic analysis as a whole or compared after fractionation by reversed-phase chromatography. Whole venom proteomes revealed a similar composition among the venoms with predominance of SVMPs, CTLs, and SVSPs and intermediate amounts of PLA 2 s and LAAOs. However, when distribution of particular isoforms was analyzed by either method, the venom from várzea snakes showed a decrease in hemorrhagic SVMPs and an increase in SVSPs, and procoagulant SVMPs and PLA 2 s. These differences were validated by experimental approaches including both enzymatic and in vivo assays, and indicated restrictions in respect to antivenom efficacy to variable components. Thus, proteomic analysis at the isoform level combined to in silico prediction of functional properties may indicate venom biological activity. These results also suggest that the prevalence of functionally distinct isoforms contributes to the variability of the venoms and could reflect the adaptation of B. atrox to distinct prey communities in different Amazon habitats. In this report, we compared isoforms present in venoms from snakes collected at different Amazonian habitats. By means of a species venom gland transcriptome and the in silico functional prediction of each isoform, we were able to predict the principal venom activities in vitro and in animal models. We also showed remarkable differences in the venom pools from snakes collected at the floodplain (várzea habitat) compared to other habitats. Not only was this venom less hemorrhagic and more procoagulant, when compared to the venom pools from the other three habitats studied, but also this enhanced procoagulant activity was not

  20. Venomics-Accelerated Cone Snail Venom Peptide Discovery

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    Himaya, S. W. A.

    2018-01-01

    Cone snail venoms are considered a treasure trove of bioactive peptides. Despite over 800 species of cone snails being known, each producing over 1000 venom peptides, only about 150 unique venom peptides are structurally and functionally characterized. To overcome the limitations of the traditional low-throughput bio-discovery approaches, multi-omics systems approaches have been introduced to accelerate venom peptide discovery and characterisation. This “venomic” approach is starting to unravel the full complexity of cone snail venoms and to provide new insights into their biology and evolution. The main challenge for venomics is the effective integration of transcriptomics, proteomics, and pharmacological data and the efficient analysis of big datasets. Novel database search tools and visualisation techniques are now being introduced that facilitate data exploration, with ongoing advances in related omics fields being expected to further enhance venomics studies. Despite these challenges and future opportunities, cone snail venomics has already exponentially expanded the number of novel venom peptide sequences identified from the species investigated, although most novel conotoxins remain to be pharmacologically characterised. Therefore, efficient high-throughput peptide production systems and/or banks of miniaturized discovery assays are required to overcome this bottleneck and thus enhance cone snail venom bioprospecting and accelerate the identification of novel drug leads. PMID:29522462

  1. Venomics-Accelerated Cone Snail Venom Peptide Discovery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. W. A. Himaya

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Cone snail venoms are considered a treasure trove of bioactive peptides. Despite over 800 species of cone snails being known, each producing over 1000 venom peptides, only about 150 unique venom peptides are structurally and functionally characterized. To overcome the limitations of the traditional low-throughput bio-discovery approaches, multi-omics systems approaches have been introduced to accelerate venom peptide discovery and characterisation. This “venomic” approach is starting to unravel the full complexity of cone snail venoms and to provide new insights into their biology and evolution. The main challenge for venomics is the effective integration of transcriptomics, proteomics, and pharmacological data and the efficient analysis of big datasets. Novel database search tools and visualisation techniques are now being introduced that facilitate data exploration, with ongoing advances in related omics fields being expected to further enhance venomics studies. Despite these challenges and future opportunities, cone snail venomics has already exponentially expanded the number of novel venom peptide sequences identified from the species investigated, although most novel conotoxins remain to be pharmacologically characterised. Therefore, efficient high-throughput peptide production systems and/or banks of miniaturized discovery assays are required to overcome this bottleneck and thus enhance cone snail venom bioprospecting and accelerate the identification of novel drug leads.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juliana L Bernardoni

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

  3. Functional characterization on invertebrate and vertebrate tissues of tachykinin peptides from octopus venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruder, Tim; Ali, Syed Abid; Ormerod, Kiel; Brust, Andreas; Roymanchadi, Mary-Louise; Ventura, Sabatino; Undheim, Eivind A B; Jackson, Timothy N W; Mercier, A Joffre; King, Glenn F; Alewood, Paul F; Fry, Bryan G

    2013-09-01

    It has been previously shown that octopus venoms contain novel tachykinin peptides that despite being isolated from an invertebrate, contain the motifs characteristic of vertebrate tachykinin peptides rather than being more like conventional invertebrate tachykinin peptides. Therefore, in this study we examined the effect of three variants of octopus venom tachykinin peptides on invertebrate and vertebrate tissues. While there were differential potencies between the three peptides, their relative effects were uniquely consistent between invertebrate and vertebrae tissue assays. The most potent form (OCT-TK-III) was not only the most anionically charged but also was the most structurally stable. These results not only reveal that the interaction of tachykinin peptides is more complex than previous structure-function theories envisioned, but also reinforce the fundamental premise that animal venoms are rich resources of novel bioactive molecules, which are useful investigational ligands and some of which may be useful as lead compounds for drug design and development. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Haemotoxic snake venoms : their functional activity, impact on snakebite victims and pharmaceutical promise

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Slagboom, Julien; Kool, Jeroen; Harrison, Robert A.; Casewell, Nicholas R.

    2017-01-01

    Snake venoms are mixtures of numerous proteinacious components that exert diverse functional activities on a variety of physiological targets. Because the toxic constituents found in venom vary from species to species, snakebite victims can present with a variety of life-threatening pathologies

  5. Structural aspects of crotalic venom proteins modified by ionizing radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oliveira, Karina Corleto de

    2010-01-01

    Snake bites are a serious public health problem, especially in subtropical countries. In Brazil, the Ministry of Health notified around 26 000 accidents in 2008. The genus Crotalus (rattlesnakes) accounts for approximately 7% of the total, with a high mortality rate of 72% when untreated with the specific serum, the only effective treatment in case of snake bites. In Brazil, the serum is produced in horses which, despite the large size, have a reduced lifespan due to the high toxicity of the antigen. Ionizing radiation has proven to be an excellent tool for reducing the toxicity of venoms and isolated toxins, resulting in better immunogens for serum production, and contributing to the welfare of serum producing animals. Since the action of gamma radiation on venoms and toxins has not been yet fully clarified from the structural point of view, we proposed in this paper, to characterize two toxins of the species Crotalus durissus terrificus: crotoxin and crotamine. After isolation of the toxins of interest by chromatographic techniques, they were subjected to structural analysis with the application of the following methods: Fluorescence, Circular Dichroism, Differential Calorimetry and Infrared Spectroscopy. These tests showed that both crotamine as crotoxin when subjected to gamma radiation, showed changes in their structural conformation compared with the samples in the native state. Such changes probably occur in the secondary and tertiary structure and may explain the changes on the biological activity of these toxins. (author)

  6. Direct Fibrinolytic Snake Venom Metalloproteinases Affecting Hemostasis: Structural, Biochemical Features and Therapeutic Potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanchez, Eladio F; Flores-Ortiz, Renzo J; Alvarenga, Valeria G; Eble, Johannes A

    2017-12-05

    Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs) are predominant in viperid venoms, which provoke hemorrhage and affect hemostasis and thrombosis. P-I class enzymes consist only of a single metalloproteinase domain. Despite sharing high sequence homology, only some of them induce hemorrhage. They have direct fibrin(ogen)olytic activity. Their main biological substrate is fibrin(ogen), whose Aα-chain is degraded rapidly and independently of activation of plasminogen. It is important to understand their biochemical and physiological mechanisms, as well as their applications, to study the etiology of some human diseases and to identify sites of potential intervention. As compared to all current antiplatelet therapies to treat cardiovascular events, the SVMPs have outstanding biochemical attributes: (a) they are insensitive to plasma serine proteinase inhibitors; (b) they have the potential to avoid bleeding risk; (c) mechanistically, they are inactivated/cleared by α2-macroglobulin that limits their range of action in circulation; and (d) few of them also impair platelet aggregation that represent an important target for therapeutic intervention. This review will briefly highlight the structure-function relationships of these few direct-acting fibrinolytic agents, including, barnettlysin-I, isolated from Bothrops barnetti venom, that could be considered as potential agent to treat major thrombotic disorders. Some of their pharmacological advantages are compared with plasmin.

  7. The role of platelets in hemostasis and the effects of snake venom toxins on platelet function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Queiroz, Mayara Ribeiro; de Sousa, Bruna Barbosa; da Cunha Pereira, Déborah Fernanda; Mamede, Carla Cristine Neves; Matias, Mariana Santos; de Morais, Nadia Cristina Gomes; de Oliveira Costa, Júnia; de Oliveira, Fábio

    2017-07-01

    The human body has a set of physiological processes, known as hemostasis, which keeps the blood fluid and free of clots in normal vessels; in the case of vascular injury, this process induces the local formation of a hemostatic plug, preventing hemorrhage. The hemostatic system in humans presents complex physiological interactions that involve platelets, plasma proteins, endothelial and subendothelial structures. Disequilibrium in the regulatory mechanisms that control the growth and the size of the thrombus is one of the factors that favors the development of diseases related to vascular disorders such as myocardial infarction and stroke, which are among the leading causes of death in the western world. Interfering with platelet function is a strategy for the treatment of thrombotic diseases. Antiplatelet drugs are used mainly in cases related to arterial thrombosis and interfere in the formation of the platelet plug by different mechanisms. Aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid) is the oldest and most widely used antithrombotic drug. Although highly effective in most cases, aspirin has limitations compared to other drugs used in the treatment of homeostatic disorders. For this reason, research related to molecules that interfere with platelet aggregation are of great relevance. In this regard, snake venoms are known to contain a number of molecules that interfere with hemostasis, including platelet function. The mechanisms by which snake venom components inhibit or activate platelet aggregation are varied and can be used as tools for the diagnosis and the treatment of several hemostatic disorders. The aim of this review is to present the role of platelets in hemostasis and the mechanisms by which snake venom toxins interfere with platelet function. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Revealing the functional structure of a new PLA2 K49 from Bothriopsis taeniata snake venom employing automatic "de novo" sequencing using CID/HCD/ETD MS/MS analyses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carregari, Victor Corasolla; Dai, Jie; Verano-Braga, Thiago; Rocha, Thalita; Ponce-Soto, Luis Alberto; Marangoni, Sergio; Roepstorff, Peter

    2016-01-10

    Snake venoms are composed of approximately 90% of proteins with several pharmacological activities having high potential in research as biological tools. One of the most abundant compounds is phospholipases A2 (PLA2), which are the most studied venom protein due to their wide pharmacological activity. Using a combination of chromatographic steps, a new PLA2 K49 was isolated and purified from the whole venom of the Bothriopsis taeniata and submitted to analyses mass spectrometry. An automatic “de novo” sequencing of this new PLA2 K49 denominated Btt-TX was performed using Peaks Studio 6 for analysis of the spectra. Additionally, a triplex approach CID/HCD/ETD has been performed, to generate higher coverage of the sequence of the protein. Structural studies correlating biological activities were made associating specific Btt-TX regions and myotoxic activity. Lysine acetylation was performed to better understand the mechanism of membrane interaction, identifying the extreme importance of the highly hydrophobic amino acids L, P and F for disruption of the membrane. Our myotoxical studies show a possible membrane disruption mechanism by Creatine Kinase release without a noticeable muscle damage, that probably occurred without phospholipid hydrolyses, but with a probable penetration of the hydrophobic amino acids present in the C-terminal region of the protein.

  9. 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.

  10. 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

    2016-01-01

    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. PMID:26805882

  11. A Tricky Trait: Applying the Fruits of the "Function Debate" in the Philosophy of Biology to the "Venom Debate" in the Science of Toxinology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Timothy N W; Fry, Bryan G

    2016-09-07

    The "function debate" in the philosophy of biology and the "venom debate" in the science of toxinology are conceptually related. Venom systems are complex multifunctional traits that have evolved independently numerous times throughout the animal kingdom. No single concept of function, amongst those popularly defended, appears adequate to describe these systems in all their evolutionary contexts and extant variations. As such, a pluralistic view of function, previously defended by some philosophers of biology, is most appropriate. Venom systems, like many other functional traits, exist in nature as points on a continuum and the boundaries between "venomous" and "non-venomous" species may not always be clearly defined. This paper includes a brief overview of the concept of function, followed by in-depth discussion of its application to venom systems. A sound understanding of function may aid in moving the venom debate forward. Similarly, consideration of a complex functional trait such as venom may be of interest to philosophers of biology.

  12. Snake Venom Metalloproteinases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  13. Functional and proteomic comparison of Bothrops jararaca venom from captive specimens and the Brazilian Bothropic Reference Venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farias, Iasmim Baptista de; Morais-Zani, Karen de; Serino-Silva, Caroline; Sant'Anna, Sávio S; Rocha, Marisa M T da; Grego, Kathleen F; Andrade-Silva, Débora; Serrano, Solange M T; Tanaka-Azevedo, Anita M

    2018-03-01

    Snake venom is a variable phenotypic trait, whose plasticity and evolution are critical for effective antivenom production. A significant reduction of the number of snake donations to Butantan Institute (São Paulo, Brazil) occurred in recent years, and this fact may impair the production of the Brazilian Bothropic Reference Venom (BBRV). Nevertheless, in the last decades a high number of Bothrops jararaca specimens have been raised in captivity in the Laboratory of Herpetology of Butantan Institute. Considering these facts, we compared the biochemical and biological profiles of B. jararaca venom from captive specimens and BBRV in order to understand the potential effects of snake captivity upon the venom composition. Electrophoretic analysis and proteomic profiling revealed few differences in venom protein bands and some differentially abundant toxins. Comparison of enzymatic activities showed minor differences between the two venoms. Similar cross-reactivity recognition pattern of both venoms by the antibothropic antivenom produced by Butantan Institute was observed. Lethality and neutralization of lethality for B. jararaca venom from captive specimens and BBRV showed similar values. Considering these results we suggest that the inclusion of B. jararaca venom from captive specimens in the composition of BBRV would not interfere with the quality of this reference venom. Snakebite envenomation is a neglected tropical pathology whose treatment is based on the use of specific antivenoms. Bothrops jararaca is responsible for the majority of snakebites in South and Southeastern Brazil. Its venom shows individual, sexual, and ontogenetic variability, however, the effect of animal captivity upon venom composition is unknown. Considering the reduced number of wild-caught snakes donated to Butantan Institute in the last decades, and the increased life expectancy of the snakes raised in captivity in the Laboratory of Herpetology, this work focused on the comparative

  14. Biochemical and Functional Characterization of Parawixia bistriata Spider Venom with Potential Proteolytic and Larvicidal Activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gimenez, Gizeli S.; Coutinho-Neto, Antonio; Kayano, Anderson M.; Simões-Silva, Rodrigo; Trindade, Frances; de Almeida e Silva, Alexandre; Marcussi, Silvana; da Silva, Saulo L.; Fernandes, Carla F. C.; Zuliani, Juliana P.; Calderon, Leonardo A.; Soares, Andreimar M.; Stábeli, Rodrigo G.

    2014-01-01

    Toxins purified from the venom of spiders have high potential to be studied pharmacologically and biochemically. These biomolecules may have biotechnological and therapeutic applications. This study aimed to evaluate the protein content of Parawixia bistriata venom and functionally characterize its proteins that have potential for biotechnological applications. The crude venom showed no phospholipase, hemorrhagic, or anti-Leishmania activities attesting to low genotoxicity and discrete antifungal activity for C. albicans. However the following activities were observed: anticoagulation, edema, myotoxicity and proteolysis on casein, azo-collagen, and fibrinogen. The chromatographic and electrophoretic profiles of the proteins revealed a predominance of acidic, neutral, and polar proteins, highlighting the presence of proteins with high molecular masses. Five fractions were collected using cation exchange chromatography, with the P4 fraction standing out as that of the highest purity. All fractions showed proteolytic activity. The crude venom and fractions P1, P2, and P3 showed larvicidal effects on A. aegypti. Fraction P4 showed the presence of a possible metalloprotease (60 kDa) that has high proteolytic activity on azo-collagen and was inhibited by EDTA. The results presented in this study demonstrate the presence of proteins in the venom of P. bistriata with potential for biotechnological applications. PMID:24895632

  15. Venomics of New World pit vipers: genus-wide comparisons of venom proteomes across Agkistrodon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lomonte, Bruno; Tsai, Wan-Chih; Ureña-Diaz, Juan Manuel; Sanz, Libia; Mora-Obando, Diana; Sánchez, Elda E; Fry, Bryan G; Gutiérrez, José María; Gibbs, H Lisle; Sovic, Michael G; Calvete, Juan J

    2014-01-16

    We report a genus-wide comparison of venom proteome variation across New World pit vipers in the genus Agkistrodon. Despite the wide variety of habitats occupied by this genus and that all its taxa feed on diverse species of vertebrates and invertebrate prey, the venom proteomes of copperheads, cottonmouths, and cantils are remarkably similar, both in the type and relative abundance of their different toxin families. The venoms from all the eleven species and subspecies sampled showed relatively similar proteolytic and PLA2 activities. In contrast, quantitative differences were observed in hemorrhagic and myotoxic activities in mice. The highest myotoxic activity was observed with the venoms of A. b. bilineatus, followed by A. p. piscivorus, whereas the venoms of A. c. contortrix and A. p. leucostoma induced the lowest myotoxic activity. The venoms of Agkistrodon bilineatus subspecies showed the highest hemorrhagic activity and A. c. contortrix the lowest. Compositional and toxicological analyses agree with clinical observations of envenomations by Agkistrodon in the USA and Central America. A comparative analysis of Agkistrodon shows that venom divergence tracks phylogeny of this genus to a greater extent than in Sistrurus rattlesnakes, suggesting that the distinct natural histories of Agkistrodon and Sistrurus clades may have played a key role in molding the patterns of evolution of their venom protein genes. A deep understanding of the structural and functional profiles of venoms and of the principles governing the evolution of venomous systems is a goal of venomics. Isolated proteomics analyses have been conducted on venoms from many species of vipers and pit vipers. However, making sense of these large inventories of data requires the integration of this information across multiple species to identify evolutionary and ecological trends. Our genus-wide venomics study provides a comprehensive overview of the toxic arsenal across Agkistrodon and a ground for

  16. Venomics of New World pit vipers: Genus-wide comparisons of venom proteomes across Agkistrodon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lomonte, Bruno; Tsai, Wan-Chih; Ureña-Diaz, Juan Manuel; Sanz, Libia; Mora-Obando, Diana; Sánchez, Elda E.; Fry, Bryan G.; Gutiérrez, José María; Gibbs, H. Lisle; Sovic, Michael G.; Calvete, Juan J.

    2015-01-01

    We report a genus-wide comparison of venom proteome variation across New World pit vipers in the genus Agkistrodon. Despite the wide variety of habitats occupied by this genus and that all its taxa feed on diverse species of vertebrates and invertebrate prey, the venom proteomes of copperheads, cottonmouths, and cantils are remarkably similar, both in the type and relative abundance of their different toxin families. The venoms from all the eleven species and subspecies sampled showed relatively similar proteolytic and PLA2 activities. In contrast, quantitative differences were observed in hemorrhagic and myotoxic activities in mice. The highest myotoxic activity was observed with the venoms of A. b. bilineatus, followed by A. p. piscivorus, whereas the venoms of A. c. contortrix and A. p. leucostoma induced the lowest myotoxic activity. The venoms of Agkistrodon bilineatus subspecies showed the highest hemorrhagic activity and A. c. contortrix the lowest. Compositional and toxicological analyses agree with clinical observations of envenomations by Agkistrodon in the USA and Central America. A comparative analysis of Agkistrodon shows that venom divergence tracks phylogeny of this genus to a greater extent than in Sistrurus rattlesnakes, suggesting that the distinct natural histories of Agkistrodon and Sistrurus clades may have played a key role in molding the patterns of evolution of their venom protein genes. Biological significance A deep understanding of the structural and functional profiles of venoms and of the principles governing the evolution of venomous systems is a goal of venomics. Isolated proteomics analyses have been conducted on venoms from many species of vipers and pit vipers. However, making sense of these large inventories of data requires the integration of this information across multiple species to identify evolutionary and ecological trends. Our genus-wide venomics study provides a comprehensive overview of the toxic arsenal across

  17. Isolation, N-glycosylations and Function of a Hyaluronidase-Like Enzyme from the Venom of the Spider Cupiennius salei

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trachsel, Christian; Moser, Aline; Kopp, Lukas; Langenegger, Nicolas; Kämpfer, Urs; von Ballmoos, Christoph; Nentwig, Wolfgang; Schürch, Stefan; Schaller, Johann

    2015-01-01

    Structure of Cupiennius salei venom hyaluronidase Hyaluronidases are important venom components acting as spreading factor of toxic compounds. In several studies this spreading effect was tested on vertebrate tissue. However, data about the spreading activity on invertebrates, the main prey organisms of spiders, are lacking. Here, a hyaluronidase-like enzyme was isolated from the venom of the spider Cupiennius salei. The amino acid sequence of the enzyme was determined by cDNA analysis of the venom gland transcriptome and confirmed by protein analysis. Two complex N-linked glycans akin to honey bee hyaluronidase glycosylations, were identified by tandem mass spectrometry. A C-terminal EGF-like domain was identified in spider hyaluronidase using InterPro. The spider hyaluronidase-like enzyme showed maximal activity at acidic pH, between 40–60°C, and 0.2 M KCl. Divalent ions did not enhance HA degradation activity, indicating that they are not recruited for catalysis. Function of venom hyaluronidases Besides hyaluronan, the enzyme degrades chondroitin sulfate A, whereas heparan sulfate and dermatan sulfate are not affected. The end products of hyaluronan degradation are tetramers, whereas chondroitin sulfate A is mainly degraded to hexamers. Identification of terminal N-acetylglucosamine or N-acetylgalactosamine at the reducing end of the oligomers identified the enzyme as an endo-β-N-acetyl-D-hexosaminidase hydrolase. The spreading effect of the hyaluronidase-like enzyme on invertebrate tissue was studied by coinjection of the enzyme with the Cupiennius salei main neurotoxin CsTx-1 into Drosophila flies. The enzyme significantly enhances the neurotoxic activity of CsTx-1. Comparative substrate degradation tests with hyaluronan, chondroitin sulfate A, dermatan sulfate, and heparan sulfate with venoms from 39 spider species from 21 families identified some spider families (Atypidae, Eresidae, Araneidae and Nephilidae) without activity of hyaluronidase-like enzymes

  18. Functional Elucidation of Nemopilema nomurai and Cyanea nozakii Nematocyst Venoms' Lytic Activity Using Mass Spectrometry and Zymography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yue, Yang; Yu, Huahua; Li, Rongfeng; Xing, Ronge; Liu, Song; Li, Kecheng; Wang, Xueqin; Chen, Xiaolin; Li, Pengcheng

    2017-01-26

    Medusozoans utilize explosively discharging penetrant nematocysts to inject venom into prey. These venoms are composed of highly complex proteins and peptides with extensive bioactivities, as observed in vitro. Diverse enzymatic toxins have been putatively identified in the venom of jellyfish, Nemopilema nomurai and Cyanea nozakii , through examination of their proteomes and transcriptomes. However, functional examination of putative enzymatic components identified in proteomic approaches to elucidate potential bioactivities is critically needed. In this study, enzymatic toxins were functionally identified using a combined approach consisting of in gel zymography and liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). The potential roles of metalloproteinases and lipases in hemolytic activity were explored using specific inhibitors. Zymography indicated that nematocyst venom possessed protease-, lipase- and hyaluronidase-class activities. Further, proteomic approaches using LC-MS/MS indicated sequence homology of proteolytic bands observed in zymography to extant zinc metalloproteinase-disintegrins and astacin metalloproteinases. Moreover, pre-incubation of the metalloproteinase inhibitor batimastat with N . nomurai nematocyst venom resulted in an approximate 62% reduction of hemolysis compared to venom exposed sheep erythrocytes, suggesting that metalloproteinases contribute to hemolytic activity. Additionally, species within the molecular mass range of 14-18 kDa exhibited both egg yolk and erythrocyte lytic activities in gel overlay assays. For the first time, our findings demonstrate the contribution of jellyfish venom metalloproteinase and suggest the involvement of lipase species to hemolytic activity. Investigations of this relationship will facilitate a better understanding of the constituents and toxicity of jellyfish venom.

  19. Proteomic and functional analyses of the venom of Porthidium lansbergii lansbergii (Lansberg's hognose viper) from the Atlantic Department of Colombia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiménez-Charris, Eliécer; Montealegre-Sanchez, Leonel; Solano-Redondo, Luis; Mora-Obando, Diana; Camacho, Erika; Castro-Herrera, Fernando; Fierro-Pérez, Leonardo; Lomonte, Bruno

    2015-01-30

    The venom of the Lansberg's hognose pitviper, Porthidium lansbergii lansbergii, a species found in the northern region of Colombia, is poorly known. Aiming to increase knowledge on Porthidium species venoms, its proteomic analysis and functional evaluation of in vitro and in vivo activities relevant to its toxicity were undertaken. Out of 51 protein components resolved by a combination of RP-HPLC and SDS-PAGE, 47 were assigned to 12 known protein families. In similarity with two previously characterized venoms from species within this genus, Porthidium nasutum and Porthidium ophryomegas, that of P. lansbergii lansbergii was dominated by metalloproteinases, although in lower proportion. A common feature of the three Porthidium venoms appears to be a high content of disintegrins. Proteins not previously observed in Porthidium venoms belong to the vascular endothelium growth factor, phosphodiesterase, and phospholipase B families. P. lansbergii lansbergii venom showed relatively weak lethal activity to mice, and induced a moderate local myotoxicity, but considerable hemorrhage. Its isolated VEGF component showed potent edema-inducing activity in the mouse footpad assay. Significant thrombocytopenia, but no other major hematological changes, were observed in envenomed mice. In vitro, this venom lacked coagulant effect on human plasma, and induced a potent inhibition of platelet aggregation which was reproduced by its purified disintegrin components. Phospholipase A2 and proteolytic activities were also demonstrated. Overall, the compositional and functional data herein described for the venom of P. lansbergii lansbergii may contribute to a better understanding of envenomings by this pitviper species, for which specific clinical information is lacking. Porthidium lansbergii lansbergii is estimated to be responsible for nearly 20% of snakebite envenoming cases at the Atlantic Department of Colombia, but the identity and functional properties of its venom components are

  20. The venom optimization hypothesis revisited.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgenstern, David; King, Glenn F

    2013-03-01

    Animal venoms are complex chemical mixtures that typically contain hundreds of proteins and non-proteinaceous compounds, resulting in a potent weapon for prey immobilization and predator deterrence. However, because venoms are protein-rich, they come with a high metabolic price tag. The metabolic cost of venom is sufficiently high to result in secondary loss of venom whenever its use becomes non-essential to survival of the animal. The high metabolic cost of venom leads to the prediction that venomous animals may have evolved strategies for minimizing venom expenditure. Indeed, various behaviors have been identified that appear consistent with frugality of venom use. This has led to formulation of the "venom optimization hypothesis" (Wigger et al. (2002) Toxicon 40, 749-752), also known as "venom metering", which postulates that venom is metabolically expensive and therefore used frugally through behavioral control. Here, we review the available data concerning economy of venom use by animals with either ancient or more recently evolved venom systems. We conclude that the convergent nature of the evidence in multiple taxa strongly suggests the existence of evolutionary pressures favoring frugal use of venom. However, there remains an unresolved dichotomy between this economy of venom use and the lavish biochemical complexity of venom, which includes a high degree of functional redundancy. We discuss the evidence for biochemical optimization of venom as a means of resolving this conundrum. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Unmasking Snake Venom of Bothrops leucurus: Purification and Pharmacological and Structural Characterization of New PLA2 Bleu TX-III

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marangoni, Fábio André; Ponce-Soto, Luis Alberto; Marangoni, Sergio; Landucci, Elen Cristina Teizem

    2013-01-01

    Bleu TX-III was isolated from Bothrops leucurus snake venom on one-step analytical chromatography reverse phase HPLC, was homogeneous on SDS-PAGE, and was confirmed by Q-Tof Ultima API ESI/MS (TOF MS mode) mass spectrometry in 14243.8 Da. Multiple alignments of Bleu TX-III show high degree of homology with basic PLA2 myotoxins from other Bothrops venoms. Our studies on local and systemic myotoxicity “in vivo” reveal that Bleu TX-III is myotoxin with local but not systemic action due to the decrease in the plasmatic CK levels when Bleu TX-III is administrated by intravenous route in mice (dose 1 and 5 μg). And at a dose of 20 μg myotoxin behaves like a local and systemic action. Bleu TX-III induced moderate marked paw edema, evidencing the local increase in vascular permeability. The inflammatory events induced in the mice (I.M.) were investigated. The increase in the levels of IL-1, IL-6, and TNF-α was observed in the plasma. It is concluded that Bleu TX-III induces inflammatory events in this model. The enzymatic phospholipid hydrolysis may be relevant to these phenomena. Bothrops leucurus venom is still not extensively explored, and the knowledge of its toxins separately through the study of structure/function will contribute for a better understanding of its action mechanism. PMID:23509815

  2. Pathophysiological significance and therapeutic applications of snake venom protease inhibitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thakur, Rupamoni; Mukherjee, Ashis K

    2017-06-01

    Protease inhibitors are important constituents of snake venom and play important roles in the pathophysiology of snakebite. Recently, research on snake venom protease inhibitors has provided valuable information to decipher the molecular details of various biological processes and offer insight for the development of some therapeutically important molecules from snake venom. The process of blood coagulation and fibrinolysis, in addition to affecting platelet function, are well known as the major targets of several snake venom protease inhibitors. This review summarizes the structure-functional aspects of snake venom protease inhibitors that have been described to date. Because diverse biological functions have been demonstrated by protease inhibitors, a comparative overview of their pharmacological and pathophysiological properties is also highlighted. In addition, since most snake venom protease inhibitors are non-toxic on their own, this review evaluates the different roles of individual protease inhibitors that could lead to the identification of drug candidates and diagnostic molecules. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Nuclear Magnetic Resonance-Based Structural Characterization and Backbone Dynamics of Recombinant Bee Venom Melittin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramirez, Lisa; Shekhtman, Alexander; Pande, Jayanti

    2018-04-30

    In recent years, there has been a resurgence of interest in melittin and its variants as their therapeutic potential has become increasingly evident. Melittin is a 26-residue peptide and a toxic component of honey bee venom. The versatility of melittin in interacting with various biological substrates, such as membranes, glycosaminoglycans, and a variety of proteins, has inspired a slew of studies that aim to improve our understanding of the structural basis of such interactions. However, these studies have largely focused on melittin solutions at high concentrations (>1 mM), even though melittin is generally effective at lower (micromolar) concentrations. Here we present high-resolution nuclear magnetic resonance studies in the lower-concentration regime using a novel method to produce isotope-labeled ( 15 N and 13 C) recombinant melittin. We provide residue-specific structural characterization of melittin in dilute aqueous solution and in 2,2,2-trifluoroethanol/water mixtures, which mimic melittin structure-function and interactions in aqueous and membrane-like environments, respectively. We find that the cis-trans isomerization of Pro14 is key to changes in the secondary structure of melittin. Thus, this study provides residue-specific structural information about melittin in the free state and in a model of the substrate-bound state. These results, taken together with published work from other laboratories, reveal the peptide's structural versatility that resembles that of intrinsically disordered proteins and peptides.

  4. 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

  5. A Novel Hyaluronidase from Brown Spider (Loxosceles intermedia) Venom (Dietrich's Hyaluronidase): From Cloning to Functional Characterization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrer, Valéria Pereira; de Mari, Thiago Lopes; Gremski, Luiza Helena; Trevisan Silva, Dilza; da Silveira, Rafael Bertoni; Gremski, Waldemiro; Chaim, Olga Meiri; Senff-Ribeiro, Andrea; Nader, Helena Bonciani; Veiga, Silvio Sanches

    2013-01-01

    Loxoscelism is the designation given to clinical symptoms evoked by Loxosceles spider's bites. Clinical manifestations include skin necrosis with gravitational spreading and systemic disturbs. The venom contains several enzymatic toxins. Herein, we describe the cloning, expression, refolding and biological evaluation of a novel brown spider protein characterized as a hyaluronidase. Employing a venom gland cDNA library, we cloned a hyaluronidase (1200 bp cDNA) that encodes for a signal peptide and a mature protein. Amino acid alignment revealed a structural relationship with members of hyaluronidase family, such as scorpion and snake species. Recombinant hyaluronidase was expressed as N-terminal His-tag fusion protein (∼45 kDa) in inclusion bodies and activity was achieved using refolding. Immunoblot analysis showed that antibodies that recognize the recombinant protein cross-reacted with hyaluronidase from whole venom as well as an anti-venom serum reacted with recombinant protein. Recombinant hyaluronidase was able to degrade purified hyaluronic acid (HA) and chondroitin sulfate (CS), while dermatan sulfate (DS) and heparan sulfate (HS) were not affected. Zymograph experiments resulted in ∼45 kDa lytic zones in hyaluronic acid (HA) and chondroitin sulfate (CS) substrates. Through in vivo experiments of dermonecrosis using rabbit skin, the recombinant hyaluronidase was shown to increase the dermonecrotic effect produced by recombinant dermonecrotic toxin from L. intermedia venom (LiRecDT1). These data support the hypothesis that hyaluronidase is a “spreading factor”. Recombinant hyaluronidase provides a useful tool for biotechnological ends. We propose the name Dietrich's Hyaluronidase for this enzyme, in honor of Professor Carl Peter von Dietrich, who dedicated his life to studying proteoglycans and glycosaminoglycans. PMID:23658852

  6. Combined Proteomic and Transcriptomic Interrogation of the Venom Gland of Conus geographus Uncovers Novel Components and Functional Compartmentalization*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Safavi-Hemami, Helena; Hu, Hao; Gorasia, Dhana G.; Bandyopadhyay, Pradip K.; Veith, Paul D.; Young, Neil D.; Reynolds, Eric C.; Yandell, Mark; Olivera, Baldomero M.; Purcell, Anthony W.

    2014-01-01

    Cone snails are highly successful marine predators that use complex venoms to capture prey. At any given time, hundreds of toxins (conotoxins) are synthesized in the secretory epithelial cells of the venom gland, a long and convoluted organ that can measure 4 times the length of the snail's body. In recent years a number of studies have begun to unveil the transcriptomic, proteomic and peptidomic complexity of the venom and venom glands of a number of cone snail species. By using a combination of DIGE, bottom-up proteomics and next-generation transcriptome sequencing the present study identifies proteins involved in envenomation and conotoxin maturation, significantly extending the repertoire of known (poly)peptides expressed in the venom gland of these remarkable animals. We interrogate the molecular and proteomic composition of different sections of the venom glands of 3 specimens of the fish hunter Conus geographus and demonstrate regional variations in gene expression and protein abundance. DIGE analysis identified 1204 gel spots of which 157 showed significant regional differences in abundance as determined by biological variation analysis. Proteomic interrogation identified 342 unique proteins including those that exhibited greatest fold change. The majority of these proteins also exhibited significant changes in their mRNA expression levels validating the reliability of the experimental approach. Transcriptome sequencing further revealed a yet unknown genetic diversity of several venom gland components. Interestingly, abundant proteins that potentially form part of the injected venom mixture, such as echotoxins, phospholipase A2 and con-ikots-ikots, classified into distinct expression clusters with expression peaking in different parts of the gland. Our findings significantly enhance the known repertoire of venom gland polypeptides and provide molecular and biochemical evidence for the compartmentalization of this organ into distinct functional entities

  7. Bioinformatics-Aided Venomics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Quentin Kaas

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Venomics is a modern approach that combines transcriptomics and proteomics to explore the toxin content of venoms. This review will give an overview of computational approaches that have been created to classify and consolidate venomics data, as well as algorithms that have helped discovery and analysis of toxin nucleic acid and protein sequences, toxin three-dimensional structures and toxin functions. Bioinformatics is used to tackle specific challenges associated with the identification and annotations of toxins. Recognizing toxin transcript sequences among second generation sequencing data cannot rely only on basic sequence similarity because toxins are highly divergent. Mass spectrometry sequencing of mature toxins is challenging because toxins can display a large number of post-translational modifications. Identifying the mature toxin region in toxin precursor sequences requires the prediction of the cleavage sites of proprotein convertases, most of which are unknown or not well characterized. Tracing the evolutionary relationships between toxins should consider specific mechanisms of rapid evolution as well as interactions between predatory animals and prey. Rapidly determining the activity of toxins is the main bottleneck in venomics discovery, but some recent bioinformatics and molecular modeling approaches give hope that accurate predictions of toxin specificity could be made in the near future.

  8. The first venomous crustacean revealed by transcriptomics and functional morphology: remipede venom glands express a unique toxin cocktail dominated by enzymes and a neurotoxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Reumont, Björn M; Blanke, Alexander; Richter, Sandy; Alvarez, Fernando; Bleidorn, Christoph; Jenner, Ronald A

    2014-01-01

    Animal venoms have evolved many times. Venomous species are especially common in three of the four main groups of arthropods (Chelicerata, Myriapoda, and Hexapoda), which together represent tens of thousands of species of venomous spiders, scorpions, centipedes, and hymenopterans. Surprisingly, despite their great diversity of body plans, there is no unambiguous evidence that any crustacean is venomous. We provide the first conclusive evidence that the aquatic, blind, and cave-dwelling remipede crustaceans are venomous and that venoms evolved in all four major arthropod groups. We produced a three-dimensional reconstruction of the venom delivery apparatus of the remipede Speleonectes tulumensis, showing that remipedes can inject venom in a controlled manner. A transcriptomic profile of its venom glands shows that they express a unique cocktail of transcripts coding for known venom toxins, including a diversity of enzymes and a probable paralytic neurotoxin very similar to one described from spider venom. We screened a transcriptomic library obtained from whole animals and identified a nontoxin paralog of the remipede neurotoxin that is not expressed in the venom glands. This allowed us to reconstruct its probable evolutionary origin and underlines the importance of incorporating data derived from nonvenom gland tissue to elucidate the evolution of candidate venom proteins. This first glimpse into the venom of a crustacean and primitively aquatic arthropod reveals conspicuous differences from the venoms of other predatory arthropods such as centipedes, scorpions, and spiders and contributes valuable information for ultimately disentangling the many factors shaping the biology and evolution of venoms and venomous species.

  9. Comparative analyses of glycerotoxin expression unveil a novel structural organization of the bloodworm venom system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richter, Sandy; Helm, Conrad; Meunier, Frederic A; Hering, Lars; Campbell, Lahcen I; Drukewitz, Stephan H; Undheim, Eivind A B; Jenner, Ronald A; Schiavo, Giampietro; Bleidorn, Christoph

    2017-03-04

    We present the first molecular characterization of glycerotoxin (GLTx), a potent neurotoxin found in the venom of the bloodworm Glycera tridactyla (Glyceridae, Annelida). Within the animal kingdom, GLTx shows a unique mode of action as it can specifically up-regulate the activity of Ca v 2.2 channels (N-type) in a reversible manner. The lack of sequence information has so far hampered a detailed understanding of its mode of action. Our analyses reveal three ~3.8 kb GLTx full-length transcripts, show that GLTx represents a multigene family, and suggest it functions as a dimer. An integrative approach using transcriptomics, quantitative real-time PCR, in situ hybridization, and immunocytochemistry shows that GLTx is highly expressed exclusively in four pharyngeal lobes, a previously unrecognized part of the venom apparatus. Our results overturn a century old textbook view on the glycerid venom system, suggesting that it is anatomically and functionally much more complex than previously thought. The herein presented GLTx sequence information constitutes an important step towards the establishment of GLTx as a versatile tool to understand the mechanism of synaptic function, as well as the mode of action of this novel neurotoxin.

  10. Vintage venoms: proteomic and pharmacological stability of snake venoms stored for up to eight decades.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jesupret, Clémence; Baumann, Kate; Jackson, Timothy N W; Ali, Syed Abid; Yang, Daryl C; Greisman, Laura; Kern, Larissa; Steuten, Jessica; Jouiaei, Mahdokht; Casewell, Nicholas R; Undheim, Eivind A B; Koludarov, Ivan; Debono, Jordan; Low, Dolyce H W; Rossi, Sarah; Panagides, Nadya; Winter, Kelly; Ignjatovic, Vera; Summerhayes, Robyn; Jones, Alun; Nouwens, Amanda; Dunstan, Nathan; Hodgson, Wayne C; Winkel, Kenneth D; Monagle, Paul; Fry, Bryan Grieg

    2014-06-13

    For over a century, venom samples from wild snakes have been collected and stored around the world. However, the quality of storage conditions for "vintage" venoms has rarely been assessed. The goal of this study was to determine whether such historical venom samples are still biochemically and pharmacologically viable for research purposes, or if new sample efforts are needed. In total, 52 samples spanning 5 genera and 13 species with regional variants of some species (e.g., 14 different populations of Notechis scutatus) were analysed by a combined proteomic and pharmacological approach to determine protein structural stability and bioactivity. When venoms were not exposed to air during storage, the proteomic results were virtually indistinguishable from that of fresh venom and bioactivity was equivalent or only slightly reduced. By contrast, a sample of Acanthophis antarcticus venom that was exposed to air (due to a loss of integrity of the rubber stopper) suffered significant degradation as evidenced by the proteomics profile. Interestingly, the neurotoxicity of this sample was nearly the same as fresh venom, indicating that degradation may have occurred in the free N- or C-terminus chains of the proteins, rather than at the tips of loops where the functional residues are located. These results suggest that these and other vintage venom collections may be of continuing value in toxin research. This is particularly important as many snake species worldwide are declining due to habitat destruction or modification. For some venoms (such as N. scutatus from Babel Island, Flinders Island, King Island and St. Francis Island) these were the first analyses ever conducted and these vintage samples may represent the only venom ever collected from these unique island forms of tiger snakes. Such vintage venoms may therefore represent the last remaining stocks of some local populations and thus are precious resources. These venoms also have significant historical value as

  11. The Crystal Structure of Cobra Venom Factor, a Cofactor for C3- and C5-Convertase CVFBb

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Krishnan, Vengadesan; Ponnuraj, Karthe; Xu, Yuanyuan; Macon, Kevin; Volanakis, John E.; Narayana, Sthanam V.L.; (Madras); (UAB)

    2009-05-26

    Cobra venom factor (CVF) is a functional analog of human complement component C3b, the active fragment of C3. Similar to C3b, in human and mammalian serum, CVF binds factor B, which is then cleaved by factor D, giving rise to the CVFBb complex that targets the same scissile bond in C3 as the authentic complement convertases C4bC2a and C3bBb. Unlike the latter, CVFBb is a stable complex and an efficient C5 convertase. We solved the crystal structure of CVF, isolated from Naja naja kouthia venom, at 2.6 {angstrom} resolution. The CVF crystal structure, an intermediate between C3b and C3c, lacks the TED domain and has the CUB domain in an identical position to that seen in C3b. The similarly positioned CUB and slightly displaced C345c domains of CVF could play a vital role in the formation of C3 convertases by providing important primary binding sites for factor B.

  12. HYMENOPTERA ALLERGENS: FROM VENOM TO VENOME

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  13. Crystal structure of myotoxin-II: a myotoxic phospholipase A2 - homologue from Bothrops moojeni venom

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Azevedo, W.F.; Ward, R.J.; Lombardi, F.R.; Arni, R.K.; Soares, A.M.; Giglio, J.R.; Fontes, M.R.M.

    1997-01-01

    Full text. Phospho lipases A2 (PLA 2 ; E C 3.1.1.4, phosphatides s n-2 acyl hydrolases) hydrolysis the s n-2 ester bond of phospholipids showing enhanced activity at lamellar or membrane surfaces. Intracellular PLA 2 s are involved at phospholipid metabolism and signal transduction, whereas extracellular PLA 2 s are found in mammalian pancreatic juices, the venoms of snakes, lizards and insects. Based on their high primary sequence similarity, extracellular PLA 2 s are separated into Classes I, II and III. Class II PLA 2 s are found in snake venoms of Crotalidae an Viperidae species, and include the sub-family of Lys PLA 2 s homologue. he coordination of the Ca 2+ ion in the PLA 2 calcium-binding loop includes and aspartate at position 49. In the catalytically active PLA 2 s, this calcium ion plays a critical role in the stabilization of the tetrahedral transition state intermediate in the catalytic mechanism. The conservative substitution Asp49-Lys results in a decreased calcium affinity with a concomitant loss of catalytic activity, and naturally occurring PLA 2 s-homologues showing the same substitution are catalytically inactive. However, the Lys PLA 2 s possess cytolytic and myotoxic activities and furthermore retain the ability to disrupt the integrity of both plasma membranes and model lipid layers by a ca 2+ -independent mechanism for which there is no evidence of lipid hydrolysis. Lys 49 PLA 2 homologues have been isolated from several Bothrops spp. venoms including B. moojeni. Therefore, in order to improve our understanding of the molecular basis of the myotoxic and Ca 2+ independent membrane damaging activities we have determined the crystal structure of MjTX-II, a Lys 49 homologue from the venom of B. moojeni. The model presented has been determined at 2.0 A resolution and refined to a crystallographic residual of 19.7% (R f ree=28.1%). (author)

  14. Direct Fibrinolytic Snake Venom Metalloproteinases Affecting Hemostasis: Structural, Biochemical Features and Therapeutic Potential

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eladio F. Sanchez

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs are predominant in viperid venoms, which provoke hemorrhage and affect hemostasis and thrombosis. P-I class enzymes consist only of a single metalloproteinase domain. Despite sharing high sequence homology, only some of them induce hemorrhage. They have direct fibrin(ogenolytic activity. Their main biological substrate is fibrin(ogen, whose Aα-chain is degraded rapidly and independently of activation of plasminogen. It is important to understand their biochemical and physiological mechanisms, as well as their applications, to study the etiology of some human diseases and to identify sites of potential intervention. As compared to all current antiplatelet therapies to treat cardiovascular events, the SVMPs have outstanding biochemical attributes: (a they are insensitive to plasma serine proteinase inhibitors; (b they have the potential to avoid bleeding risk; (c mechanistically, they are inactivated/cleared by α2-macroglobulin that limits their range of action in circulation; and (d few of them also impair platelet aggregation that represent an important target for therapeutic intervention. This review will briefly highlight the structure–function relationships of these few direct-acting fibrinolytic agents, including, barnettlysin-I, isolated from Bothrops barnetti venom, that could be considered as potential agent to treat major thrombotic disorders. Some of their pharmacological advantages are compared with plasmin.

  15. Harvesting Venom Toxins from Assassin Bugs and Other Heteropteran Insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Andrew Allan; Rosenthal, Max; Undheim, Eivind E A; King, Glenn F

    2018-04-21

    Heteropteran insects such as assassin bugs (Reduviidae) and giant water bugs (Belostomatidae) descended from a common predaceous and venomous ancestor, and the majority of extant heteropterans retain this trophic strategy. Some heteropterans have transitioned to feeding on vertebrate blood (such as the kissing bugs, Triatominae; and bed bugs, Cimicidae) while others have reverted to feeding on plants (most Pentatomomorpha). However, with the exception of saliva used by kissing bugs to facilitate blood-feeding, little is known about heteropteran venoms compared to the venoms of spiders, scorpions and snakes. One obstacle to the characterization of heteropteran venom toxins is the structure and function of the venom/labial glands, which are both morphologically complex and perform multiple biological roles (defense, prey capture, and extra-oral digestion). In this article, we describe three methods we have successfully used to collect heteropteran venoms. First, we present electrostimulation as a convenient way to collect venom that is often lethal when injected into prey animals, and which obviates contamination by glandular tissue. Second, we show that gentle harassment of animals is sufficient to produce venom extrusion from the proboscis and/or venom spitting in some groups of heteropterans. Third, we describe methods to harvest venom toxins by dissection of anaesthetized animals to obtain the venom glands. This method is complementary to other methods, as it may allow harvesting of toxins from taxa in which electrostimulation and harassment are ineffective. These protocols will enable researchers to harvest toxins from heteropteran insects for structure-function characterization and possible applications in medicine and agriculture.

  16. Identification and functional analysis of a novel bradykinin inhibitory peptide in the venoms of New World Crotalinae pit vipers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    James Graham, Robert Leslie; Graham, Ciaren; McClean, Stephen; Chen, Tianbao; O'Rourke, Martin; Hirst, David; Theakston, David; Shaw, Chris

    2005-01-01

    A novel undecapeptide has been isolated and structurally characterized from the venoms of three species of New World pit vipers from the subfamily, Crotalinae. These include the Mexican moccasin (Agkistrodon bilineatus), the prairie rattlesnake (Crotalus viridis viridis), and the South American bushmaster (Lachesis muta). The peptide was purified from all three venoms using a combination of gel permeation chromatography and reverse-phase HPLC. Automated Edman degradation sequencing and MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry established its peptide primary structure as: Thr-Pro-Pro-Ala-Gly-Pro-Asp-Val-Gly-Pro-Arg-OH, with a non-protonated molecular mass of 1063.18 Da. A synthetic replicate of the peptide was found to be an antagonist of bradykinin action at the rat vascular B2 receptor. This is the first bradykinin inhibitory peptide isolated from snake venom. Database searching revealed the peptide to be highly structurally related (10/11 residues) with a domain residing between the bradykinin-potentiating peptide and C-type natriuretic peptide domains of a recently cloned precursor from tropical rattlesnake (Crotalus durissus terrificus) venom gland. BIP thus represents a novel biological entity from snake venom

  17. Venomous snakes of Costa Rica: biological and medical implications of their venom proteomic profiles analyzed through the strategy of snake venomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lomonte, Bruno; Fernández, Julián; Sanz, Libia; Angulo, Yamileth; Sasa, Mahmood; Gutiérrez, José María; Calvete, Juan J

    2014-06-13

    establishment of venom proteomic profiles offers a fundamental platform to assess the detailed immunorecognition of individual proteins/peptides by therapeutic or experimental antivenoms, an evolving methodology for which the term 'antivenomics' was coined (as described in an accompanying paper in this special issue). Venoms represent an adaptive trait and an example of both divergent and convergent evolution. A deep understanding of the composition of venoms and of the principles governing the evolution of venomous systems is of applied importance for exploring the enormous potential of venoms as sources of chemical and pharmacological novelty but also to fight the consequences of snakebite envenomings. Key to this is the identification of evolutionary and ecological trends at different taxonomical levels. However, the evolution of venomous species and their venoms do not always follow the same course, and the identification of structural and functional convergences and divergences among venoms is often unpredictable by a phylogenetic hypothesis. Snake venomics is a proteomic-centered strategy to deconstruct the complex molecular phenotypes the venom proteomes. The proteomic profiles of venoms from sixteen out of the 22 venomous species within the Viperidae and Elapidae families found in Costa Rica have been completed so far. An integrative view of their venom composition, including the identification of geographic and ontogenic variations, is hereby presented. Venom proteomic profiles offer a fundamental platform to assess the detailed immunorecognition of individual venom components by therapeutic or experimental antivenoms. This aspect is reviewed in the companion paper. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Proteomics of non-model organisms. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Machine learning can differentiate venom toxins from other proteins having non-toxic physiological functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ranko Gacesa

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Ascribing function to sequence in the absence of biological data is an ongoing challenge in bioinformatics. Differentiating the toxins of venomous animals from homologues having other physiological functions is particularly problematic as there are no universally accepted methods by which to attribute toxin function using sequence data alone. Bioinformatics tools that do exist are difficult to implement for researchers with little bioinformatics training. Here we announce a machine learning tool called ‘ToxClassifier’ that enables simple and consistent discrimination of toxins from non-toxin sequences with >99% accuracy and compare it to commonly used toxin annotation methods. ‘ToxClassifer’ also reports the best-hit annotation allowing placement of a toxin into the most appropriate toxin protein family, or relates it to a non-toxic protein having the closest homology, giving enhanced curation of existing biological databases and new venomics projects. ‘ToxClassifier’ is available for free, either to download (https://github.com/rgacesa/ToxClassifier or to use on a web-based server (http://bioserv7.bioinfo.pbf.hr/ToxClassifier/.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Soichi Takeda

    2016-05-01

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

  20. Virtual analysis of structurally diverse synthetic analogs as inhibitors of snake venom secretory phospholipase A2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sivaramakrishnan, V; Ilamathi, M; Ghosh, K S; Sathish, S; Gowda, T V; Vishwanath, B S; Rangappa, K S; Dhananjaya, B L

    2016-01-01

    Due to the toxic pathophysiological role of snake venom phospholipase A2 (PLA2 ), its compelling limitations to anti-venom therapy in humans and the need for alternative therapy foster considerable pharmacological interest towards search of PLA2 specific inhibitors. In this study, an integrated approach involving homology modeling, molecular dynamics and molecular docking studies on VRV-PL-V (Vipera russellii venom phospholipase A2 fraction-V) belonging to Group II-B secretory PLA2 from Daboia russelli pulchella is carried out in order to study the structure-based inhibitor design. The accuracy of the model was validated using multiple computational approaches. The molecular docking study of this protein was undertaken using different classes of experimentally proven, structurally diverse synthetic inhibitors of secretory PLA2 whose selection is based on IC50 value that ranges from 25 μM to 100 μM. Estimation of protein-ligand contacts by docking analysis sheds light on the importance of His 47 and Asp 48 within the VRV-PL-V binding pocket as key residue for hydrogen bond interaction with ligands. Our virtual analysis revealed that compounds with different scaffold binds to the same active site region. ADME analysis was also further performed to filter and identify the best potential specific inhibitor against VRV-PL-V. Additionally, the e-pharmacophore was generated for the best potential specific inhibitor against VRV-PL-V and reported here. The present study should therefore play a guiding role in the experimental design of VRV-PL-V inhibitors that may provide better therapeutic molecular models for PLA2 recognition and anti-ophidian activity. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  1. Isolation and Functional Characterization of an Acidic Myotoxic Phospholipase A₂ from Colombian Bothrops asper Venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Posada Arias, Silvia; Rey-Suárez, Paola; Pereáñez J, Andrés; Acosta, Cristian; Rojas, Mauricio; Delazari Dos Santos, Lucilene; Ferreira, Rui Seabra; Núñez, Vitelbina

    2017-10-26

    Myotoxic phospholipases A₂ (PLA₂) are responsible for many clinical manifestations in envenomation by Bothrops snakes. A new myotoxic acidic Asp49 PLA₂ (BaCol PLA₂) was isolated from Colombian Bothrops asper venom using reverse-phase high performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC). BaCol PLA₂ had a molecular mass of 14,180.69 Da (by mass spectrometry) and an isoelectric point of 4.4. The complete amino acid sequence was obtained by cDNA cloning (GenBank accession No. MF319968) and revealed a mature product of 124 amino acids with Asp at position 49. BaCol PLA₂ showed structural homology with other acidic PLA₂ isolated from Bothrops venoms, including a non-myotoxic PLA₂ from Costa Rican B. asper . In vitro studies showed cell membrane damage without exposure of phosphatidylserine, an early apoptosis hallmark. BaCol PLA₂ had high indirect hemolytic activity and moderate anticoagulant action. In mice, BaCol PLA₂ caused marked edema and myotoxicity, the latter seen as an increase in plasma creatine kinase and histological damage to gastrocnemius muscle fibers that included vacuolization and hyalinization necrosis of the sarcoplasm.

  2. Isolation and Functional Characterization of an Acidic Myotoxic Phospholipase A2 from Colombian Bothrops asper Venom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvia Posada Arias

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Myotoxic phospholipases A2 (PLA2 are responsible for many clinical manifestations in envenomation by Bothrops snakes. A new myotoxic acidic Asp49 PLA2 (BaCol PLA2 was isolated from Colombian Bothrops asper venom using reverse-phase high performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC. BaCol PLA2 had a molecular mass of 14,180.69 Da (by mass spectrometry and an isoelectric point of 4.4. The complete amino acid sequence was obtained by cDNA cloning (GenBank accession No. MF319968 and revealed a mature product of 124 amino acids with Asp at position 49. BaCol PLA2 showed structural homology with other acidic PLA2 isolated from Bothrops venoms, including a non-myotoxic PLA2 from Costa Rican B. asper. In vitro studies showed cell membrane damage without exposure of phosphatidylserine, an early apoptosis hallmark. BaCol PLA2 had high indirect hemolytic activity and moderate anticoagulant action. In mice, BaCol PLA2 caused marked edema and myotoxicity, the latter seen as an increase in plasma creatine kinase and histological damage to gastrocnemius muscle fibers that included vacuolization and hyalinization necrosis of the sarcoplasm.

  3. Functional characterizations of venom phenotypes in the eastern diamondback rattlesnake (Crotalus adamanteus) and evidence for expression-driven divergence in toxic activities among populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margres, Mark J.; Walls, Robert; Suntravat, Montamas; Lucena, Sara; Sánchez, Elda E.; Rokyta, Darin R.

    2016-01-01

    Phenotypes frequently vary across and within species. The connection between specific phenotypic effects and function, however, is less understood despite being essential to our understanding of the adaptive process. Snake venoms are ideal for identifying functionally important phenotypic variation because venom variation is common, and venoms can be functionally characterized through simple assays and toxicity measurements. Previous work with the eastern diamondback rattlesnake (Crotalus adamanteus) used multivariate statistical approaches to identify six unique venom phenotypes. We functionally characterized hemolytic, gelatinase, fibrinogenolytic, and coagulant activity for all six phenotypes, as well as one additional venom, to determine if the statistically significant differences in toxin expression levels previously documented corresponded to differences in venom activity. In general, statistical differences in toxin expression predicted the identified functional differences, or lack thereof, in toxic activity, demonstrating that the statistical approach used to characterize C. adamanteus venoms was a fair representation of biologically meaningful differences. Minor differences in activity not accounted for by the statistical model may be the result of amino-acid differences and/or post-translational modifications, but overall we were able to link variation in protein expression levels to variation in function as predicted by multivariate statistical approaches. PMID:27179420

  4. Venom Apparatus Structure and Conutoxins Granules formation in Cone Snail (Conus coronatus of Persian Gulf

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ferial Monsef

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Background: Today use conotoxin as a neurotoxin and cytotoxin in medical science is obvious. These compounds are produced by venomous cone snails. Toxins produced by the venom apparatus of this snail and injected into the prey. To obtain and identification of these toxins, study of venom apparatus and the manufacture formation is necessary. Materials and Methods: In order to study the organ, specimens of C. coronatus were collected from the Coast of Gheshm Island. After dissection were fixed in Bouin's for 48 hours and transferred to laboratory into 70% ethanol. After dehydration and Paraffin embedded were cutted by microtome and then collected on glass slides and stained then photographed and studied. Results: Observation showed that, the venom bulb was muscular and in their middle part a channel with epithelial cells was observable that secreted some material. Venom duct walls composed of 3 parts including the outer layer of connective tissue with muscle an inner layer of columnar epithelial cells with basal nucleus and the inner lumens which filled by the. Departed nucleus by secretion exist in all 3 part of venom duct. In radula sac sections, lots growing radula were observed. Conclusion: Venom bulb was a weak secretion role and venom duct near the pharynx have a more mature granule than the other part. Holocrine secretion happened in all part of venom duct. Most suitable part for extract the conotoxin was the venom bulb end part.

  5. High-resolution proteomic profiling of spider venom: expanding the toxin diversity of Phoneutria nigriventer venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liberato, Tarcísio; Troncone, Lanfranco Ranieri Paolo; Yamashiro, Edson T; Serrano, Solange M T; Zelanis, André

    2016-03-01

    Here we present a proteomic characterization of Phoneutria nigriventer venom. A shotgun proteomic approach allowed the identification, for the first time, of O-glycosyl hydrolases (chitinases) in P. nigriventer venom. The electrophoretic profiles under nonreducing and reducing conditions, and protein identification by mass spectrometry, indicated the presence of oligomeric toxin structures in the venom. Complementary proteomic approaches allowed for a qualitative and semi-quantitative profiling of P. nigriventer venom complexity, expanding its known venom proteome diversity.

  6. Biochemical and functional characterization of Bothropoidin: the first haemorrhagic metalloproteinase from Bothrops pauloensis snake venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomes, Mário Sérgio R; Naves de Souza, Dayane L; Guimarães, Denise O; Lopes, Daiana S; Mamede, Carla C N; Gimenes, Sarah Natalie C; Achê, David C; Rodrigues, Renata S; Yoneyama, Kelly A G; Borges, Márcia H; de Oliveira, Fábio; Rodrigues, Veridiana M

    2015-03-01

    We present the biochemical and functional characterization of Bothropoidin, the first haemorrhagic metalloproteinase isolated from Bothrops pauloensis snake venom. This protein was purified after three chromatographic steps on cation exchange CM-Sepharose fast flow, size-exclusion column Sephacryl S-300 and anion exchange Capto Q. Bothropoidin was homogeneous by SDS-PAGE under reducing and non-reducing conditions, and comprised a single chain of 49,558 Da according to MALDI TOF analysis. The protein presented an isoelectric point of 3.76, and the sequence of six fragments obtained by MS (MALDI TOF\\TOF) showed a significant score when compared with other PIII Snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs). Bothropoidin showed proteolytic activity on azocasein, Aα-chain of fibrinogen, fibrin, collagen and fibronectin. The enzyme was stable at pH 6-9 and at lower temperatures when assayed on azocasein. Moreover, its activity was inhibited by EDTA, 1.10-phenanthroline and β-mercaptoethanol. Bothropoidin induced haemorrhage [minimum haemorrhagic dose (MHD) = 0.75 µg], inhibited platelet aggregation induced by collagen and ADP, and interfered with viability and cell adhesion when incubated with endothelial cells in a dose and time-dependent manner. Our results showed that Bothropoidin is a haemorrhagic metalloproteinase that can play an important role in the toxicity of B. pauloensis envenomation and might be used as a tool for studying the effects of SVMPs on haemostatic disorders and tumour metastasis. © The Authors 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Japanese Biochemical Society. All rights reserved.

  7. A Tricky Trait: Applying the Fruits of the “Function Debate” in the Philosophy of Biology to the “Venom Debate” in the Science of Toxinology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Timothy N. W.; Fry, Bryan G.

    2016-01-01

    The “function debate” in the philosophy of biology and the “venom debate” in the science of toxinology are conceptually related. Venom systems are complex multifunctional traits that have evolved independently numerous times throughout the animal kingdom. No single concept of function, amongst those popularly defended, appears adequate to describe these systems in all their evolutionary contexts and extant variations. As such, a pluralistic view of function, previously defended by some philosophers of biology, is most appropriate. Venom systems, like many other functional traits, exist in nature as points on a continuum and the boundaries between “venomous” and “non-venomous” species may not always be clearly defined. This paper includes a brief overview of the concept of function, followed by in-depth discussion of its application to venom systems. A sound understanding of function may aid in moving the venom debate forward. Similarly, consideration of a complex functional trait such as venom may be of interest to philosophers of biology. PMID:27618098

  8. A Tricky Trait: Applying the Fruits of the “Function Debate” in the Philosophy of Biology to the “Venom Debate” in the Science of Toxinology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Timothy N. W. Jackson

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The “function debate” in the philosophy of biology and the “venom debate” in the science of toxinology are conceptually related. Venom systems are complex multifunctional traits that have evolved independently numerous times throughout the animal kingdom. No single concept of function, amongst those popularly defended, appears adequate to describe these systems in all their evolutionary contexts and extant variations. As such, a pluralistic view of function, previously defended by some philosophers of biology, is most appropriate. Venom systems, like many other functional traits, exist in nature as points on a continuum and the boundaries between “venomous” and “non-venomous” species may not always be clearly defined. This paper includes a brief overview of the concept of function, followed by in-depth discussion of its application to venom systems. A sound understanding of function may aid in moving the venom debate forward. Similarly, consideration of a complex functional trait such as venom may be of interest to philosophers of biology.

  9. Mad, bad and dangerous to know: the biochemistry, ecology and evolution of slow loris venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nekaris, K Anne-Isola; Moore, Richard S; Rode, E Johanna; Fry, Bryan G

    2013-09-27

    Only seven types of mammals are known to be venomous, including slow lorises (Nycticebus spp.). Despite the evolutionary significance of this unique adaptation amongst Nycticebus, the structure and function of slow loris venom is only just beginning to be understood. Here we review what is known about the chemical structure of slow loris venom. Research on a handful of captive samples from three of eight slow loris species reveals that the protein within slow loris venom resembles the disulphide-bridged heterodimeric structure of Fel-d1, more commonly known as cat allergen. In a comparison of N. pygmaeus and N. coucang, 212 and 68 compounds were found, respectively. Venom is activated by combining the oil from the brachial arm gland with saliva, and can cause death in small mammals and anaphylactic shock and death in humans. We examine four hypotheses for the function of slow loris venom. The least evidence is found for the hypothesis that loris venom evolved to kill prey. Although the venom's primary function in nature seems to be as a defense against parasites and conspecifics, it may also serve to thwart olfactory-orientated predators. Combined with numerous other serpentine features of slow lorises, including extra vertebra in the spine leading to snake-like movement, serpentine aggressive vocalisations, a long dark dorsal stripe and the venom itself, we propose that venom may have evolved to mimic cobras (Naja sp.). During the Miocene when both slow lorises and cobras migrated throughout Southeast Asia, the evolution of venom may have been an adaptive strategy against predators used by slow lorises as a form of Müllerian mimicry with spectacled cobras.

  10. Melt With This Kiss: Paralyzing and Liquefying Venom of The Assassin Bug Pristhesancus plagipennis (Hemiptera: Reduviidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Andrew A; Madio, Bruno; Jin, Jiayi; Undheim, Eivind A B; Fry, Bryan G; King, Glenn F

    2017-04-01

    Assassin bugs (Hemiptera: Heteroptera: Reduviidae) are venomous insects, most of which prey on invertebrates. Assassin bug venom has features in common with venoms from other animals, such as paralyzing and lethal activity when injected, and a molecular composition that includes disulfide-rich peptide neurotoxins. Uniquely, this venom also has strong liquefying activity that has been hypothesized to facilitate feeding through the narrow channel of the proboscis-a structure inherited from sap- and phloem-feeding phytophagous hemipterans and adapted during the evolution of Heteroptera into a fang and feeding structure. However, further understanding of the function of assassin bug venom is impeded by the lack of proteomic studies detailing its molecular composition.By using a combined transcriptomic/proteomic approach, we show that the venom proteome of the harpactorine assassin bug Pristhesancus plagipennis includes a complex suite of >100 proteins comprising disulfide-rich peptides, CUB domain proteins, cystatins, putative cytolytic toxins, triabin-like protein, odorant-binding protein, S1 proteases, catabolic enzymes, putative nutrient-binding proteins, plus eight families of proteins without homology to characterized proteins. S1 proteases, CUB domain proteins, putative cytolytic toxins, and other novel proteins in the 10-16-kDa mass range, were the most abundant venom components. Thus, in addition to putative neurotoxins, assassin bug venom includes a high proportion of enzymatic and cytolytic venom components likely to be well suited to tissue liquefaction. Our results also provide insight into the trophic switch to blood-feeding by the kissing bugs (Reduviidae: Triatominae). Although some protein families such as triabins occur in the venoms of both predaceous and blood-feeding reduviids, the composition of venoms produced by these two groups is revealed to differ markedly. These results provide insights into the venom evolution in the insect suborder

  11. Snake Venom Metalloproteinases

    OpenAIRE

    Gâz Florea Şerban Andrei; Gâz Florea Adriana; Kelemen Hajnal; Muntean Daniela-Lucia

    2016-01-01

    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 clas...

  12. 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.

    2016-01-01

    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. PMID:26907342

  13. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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. Isolation of biologically active peptides from the venom of Japanese carpenter bee, Xylocopa appendiculata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawakami, Hiroko; Goto, Shin G; Murata, Kazuya; Matsuda, Hideaki; Shigeri, Yasushi; Imura, Tomohiro; Inagaki, Hidetoshi; Shinada, Tetsuro

    2017-01-01

    Mass spectrometry-guided venom peptide profiling is a powerful tool to explore novel substances from venomous animals in a highly sensitive manner. In this study, this peptide profiling approach is successfully applied to explore the venom peptides of a Japanese solitary carpenter bee, Xylocopa appendiculata (Hymenoptera: Apoidea: Apidae: Anthophila: Xylocopinae: Xylocopini). Although interesting biological effects of the crude venom of carpenter bees have been reported, the structure and biological function of the venom peptides have not been elucidated yet. The venom peptide profiling of the crude venom of X. appendiculata was performed by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization-time of flight mass spectroscopy. The venom was purified by a reverse-phase HPLC. The purified peptides were subjected to the Edman degradation, MS/MS analysis, and/or molecular cloning methods for peptide sequencing. Biological and functional characterization was performed by circular dichroism analysis, liposome leakage assay, and antimicrobial, histamine releasing and hemolytic activity tests. Three novel peptides with m / z 16508, 1939.3, and 1900.3 were isolated from the venom of X. appendiculata . The peptide with m / z 16508 was characterized as a secretory phospholipase A 2 (PLA 2 ) homolog in which the characteristic cysteine residues as well as the active site residues found in bee PLA 2 s are highly conserved. Two novel peptides with m/z 1939.3 and m/z 1900.3 were named as Xac-1 and Xac-2, respectively. These peptides are found to be amphiphilic and displayed antimicrobial and hemolytic activities. The potency was almost the same as that of mastoparan isolated from the wasp venom. We found three novel biologically active peptides in the venom of X. appendiculata and analyzed their molecular functions, and compared their sequential homology to discuss their molecular diversity. Highly sensitive mass analysis plays an important role in this study.

  16. Paulistine—The Functional Duality of a Wasp Venom Peptide Toxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helen Andrade Arcuri

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available It has been reported that Paulistine in the venom of the wasp Polybia paulista co-exists as two different forms: an oxidized form presenting a compact structure due to the presence of a disulfide bridge, which causes inflammation through an apparent interaction with receptors in the 5-lipoxygenase pathway, and a naturally reduced form (without the disulfide bridge that exists in a linear conformation and which also causes hyperalgesia and acts in the cyclooxygenase type II pathway. The reduced peptide was acetamidomethylated (Acm-Paulistine to stabilize this form, and it still maintained its typical inflammatory activity. Oxidized Paulistine docks onto PGHS2 (COX-2 molecules, blocking the access of oxygen to the heme group and inhibiting the inflammatory activity of Acm-Paulistine in the cyclooxygenase type II pathway. Docking simulations revealed that the site of the docking of Paulistine within the PGHS2 molecule is unusual among commercial inhibitors of the enzyme, with an affinity potentially much higher than those observed for traditional anti-inflammatory drugs. Therefore, Paulistine causes inflammatory activity at the level of the 5-lipooxygenase pathway and, in parallel, it competes with its reduced form in relation to the activation of the cyclooxygenase pathway. Thus, while the reduced Paulistine causes inflammation, its oxidized form is a potent inhibitor of this activity.

  17. Platyhelminth Venom Allergen-Like (VAL) proteins: revealing structural diversity, class-specific features and biological associations across the phylum

    Science.gov (United States)

    CHALMERS, IAIN W.; HOFFMANN, KARL F.

    2012-01-01

    SUMMARY During platyhelminth infection, a cocktail of proteins is released by the parasite to aid invasion, initiate feeding, facilitate adaptation and mediate modulation of the host immune response. Included amongst these proteins is the Venom Allergen-Like (VAL) family, part of the larger sperm coating protein/Tpx-1/Ag5/PR-1/Sc7 (SCP/TAPS) superfamily. To explore the significance of this protein family during Platyhelminthes development and host interactions, we systematically summarize all published proteomic, genomic and immunological investigations of the VAL protein family to date. By conducting new genomic and transcriptomic interrogations to identify over 200 VAL proteins (228) from species in all 4 traditional taxonomic classes (Trematoda, Cestoda, Monogenea and Turbellaria), we further expand our knowledge related to platyhelminth VAL diversity across the phylum. Subsequent phylogenetic and tertiary structural analyses reveal several class-specific VAL features, which likely indicate a range of roles mediated by this protein family. Our comprehensive analysis of platyhelminth VALs represents a unifying synopsis for understanding diversity within this protein family and a firm context in which to initiate future functional characterization of these enigmatic members. PMID:22717097

  18. Structural and binding studies of a C-type galactose-binding lectin from Bothrops jararacussu snake venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sartim, Marco A; Pinheiro, Matheus P; de Pádua, Ricardo A P; Sampaio, Suely V; Nonato, M Cristina

    2017-02-01

    BJcuL is a snake venom galactoside-binding lectin (SVgalL) isolated from Bothrops jararacussu and is involved in a wide variety of biological activities including triggering of pro-inflammatory response, disruption of microbial biofilm structure and induction of apoptosis. In the present work, we determined the crystallographic structure of BJcuL, the first holo structure of a SVgalL, and introduced the fluorescence-based thermal stability assay (Thermofluor) as a tool for screening and characterization of the binding mechanism of SVgalL ligands. BJcuL structure revealed the existence of a porous and flexible decameric arrangement composed of disulfide-linked dimers related by a five-fold symmetry. Each monomer contains the canonical carbohydrate recognition domain, a calcium ion required for BJcuL lectinic activity and a sodium ion required for protein stabilization. BJcuL thermostability was found to be induced by calcium ion and galactoside sugars which exhibit hyperbolic saturation profiles dependent on ligand concentration. Serendipitously, the gentamicin group of aminoglycoside antibiotics (gAGAs) was also identified as BJcuL ligands. On contrast, gAGAs exhibited a sigmoidal saturation profile compatible with a cooperative mechanism of binding. Thermofluor, hemagglutination inhibition assay and molecular docking strategies were used to identify a distinct binding site in BJcuL localized at the dimeric interface near the fully conserved intermolecular Cys86-Cys86 disulfide bond. The hybrid approach used in the present work provided novel insights into structural behavior and functional diversification of SVgaLs. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Venom Evolution

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    IAS Admin

    Therefore, the platypus sequence was studied to quantify the role of gene duplication in the evolution of venom. ... Platypus venom is present only in males and is used for asserting dominance over com- petitors during the ... Certain toxin gene families are known to re- peatedly evolve through gene duplications. The rapidly ...

  20. Modular organization of α-toxins from scorpion venom mirrors domain structure of their targets, sodium channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chugunov, Anton O; Koromyslova, Anna D; Berkut, Antonina A; Peigneur, Steve; Tytgat, Jan; Polyansky, Anton A; Pentkovsky, Vladimir M; Vassilevski, Alexander A; Grishin, Eugene V; Efremov, Roman G

    2013-06-28

    To gain success in the evolutionary "arms race," venomous animals such as scorpions produce diverse neurotoxins selected to hit targets in the nervous system of prey. Scorpion α-toxins affect insect and/or mammalian voltage-gated sodium channels (Na(v)s) and thereby modify the excitability of muscle and nerve cells. Although more than 100 α-toxins are known and a number of them have been studied into detail, the molecular mechanism of their interaction with Na(v)s is still poorly understood. Here, we employ extensive molecular dynamics simulations and spatial mapping of hydrophobic/hydrophilic properties distributed over the molecular surface of α-toxins. It is revealed that despite the small size and relatively rigid structure, these toxins possess modular organization from structural, functional, and evolutionary perspectives. The more conserved and rigid "core module" is supplemented with the "specificity module" (SM) that is comparatively flexible and variable and determines the taxon (mammal versus insect) specificity of α-toxin activity. We further show that SMs in mammal toxins are more flexible and hydrophilic than in insect toxins. Concomitant sequence-based analysis of the extracellular loops of Na(v)s suggests that α-toxins recognize the channels using both modules. We propose that the core module binds to the voltage-sensing domain IV, whereas the more versatile SM interacts with the pore domain in repeat I of Na(v)s. These findings corroborate and expand the hypothesis on different functional epitopes of toxins that has been reported previously. In effect, we propose that the modular structure in toxins evolved to match the domain architecture of Na(v)s.

  1. Human antibody fragments specific for Bothrops jararacussu venom reduce the toxicity of other Bothrops sp. venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roncolato, Eduardo Crosara; Pucca, Manuela Berto; Funayama, Jaqueline Carlos; Bertolini, Thaís Barboza; Campos, Lucas Benício; Barbosa, José Elpidio

    2013-01-01

    Approximately 20,000 snakebites are registered each year in Brazil. The classical treatment for venomous snakebite involves the administration of sera obtained from immunized horses. Moreover, the production and care of horses is costly, and the use of heterologous sera can cause hypersensitivity reactions. The production of human antibody fragments by phage display technology is seen as a means of overcoming some of these disadvantages. The studies here attempted to test human monoclonal antibodies specific to Bothrops jararacussu against other Bothrops sp. venoms, using the Griffin.1 library of human single-chain fragment-variable (scFv) phage antibodies. Using the Griffin.1 phage antibody library, this laboratory previously produced scFvs capable of inhibiting the phospholipase and myotoxic activities of Bothrops jararacussu venom. The structural and functional similarities of the various forms of phospholipase A2 (PLA₂) in Bothrops venom served as the basis for the present study wherein the effectiveness of those same scFvs were evaluated against B. jararaca, B. neuwiedi, and B. moojeni venoms. Each clone was found to recognize all three Bothrops venoms, and purified scFvs partially inhibited their in vitro phospholipase activity. In vivo assays demonstrated that the scFv clone P2B7 reduced myotoxicity and increased the survival of animals that received the test venoms. The results here indicate that the scFv P2B7 is a candidate for inclusion in a mixture of specific antibodies to produce a human anti-bothropic sera. This data demonstrates that the human scFv P2B7 represents an alternative therapeutic approach to heterologous anti-bothropic sera available today.

  2. From Mollusks to Medicine: A Venomics Approach for the Discovery and Characterization of Therapeutics from Terebridae Peptide Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aida Verdes

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Animal venoms comprise a diversity of peptide toxins that manipulate molecular targets such as ion channels and receptors, making venom peptides attractive candidates for the development of therapeutics to benefit human health. However, identifying bioactive venom peptides remains a significant challenge. In this review we describe our particular venomics strategy for the discovery, characterization, and optimization of Terebridae venom peptides, teretoxins. Our strategy reflects the scientific path from mollusks to medicine in an integrative sequential approach with the following steps: (1 delimitation of venomous Terebridae lineages through taxonomic and phylogenetic analyses; (2 identification and classification of putative teretoxins through omics methodologies, including genomics, transcriptomics, and proteomics; (3 chemical and recombinant synthesis of promising peptide toxins; (4 structural characterization through experimental and computational methods; (5 determination of teretoxin bioactivity and molecular function through biological assays and computational modeling; (6 optimization of peptide toxin affinity and selectivity to molecular target; and (7 development of strategies for effective delivery of venom peptide therapeutics. While our research focuses on terebrids, the venomics approach outlined here can be applied to the discovery and characterization of peptide toxins from any venomous taxa.

  3. Mast cell chymase reduces the toxicity of Gila monster venom, scorpion venom, and vasoactive intestinal polypeptide in mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akahoshi, Mitsuteru; Song, Chang Ho; Piliponsky, Adrian M.; Metz, Martin; Guzzetta, Andrew; Åbrink, Magnus; Schlenner, Susan M.; Feyerabend, Thorsten B.; Rodewald, Hans-Reimer; Pejler, Gunnar; Tsai, Mindy; Galli, Stephen J.

    2011-01-01

    Mast cell degranulation is important in the pathogenesis of anaphylaxis and allergic disorders. Many animal venoms contain components that can induce mast cell degranulation, and this has been thought to contribute to the pathology and mortality caused by envenomation. However, we recently reported evidence that mast cells can enhance the resistance of mice to the venoms of certain snakes and that mouse mast cell–derived carboxypeptidase A3 (CPA3) can contribute to this effect. Here, we investigated whether mast cells can enhance resistance to the venom of the Gila monster, a toxic component of that venom (helodermin), and the structurally similar mammalian peptide, vasoactive intestinal polypeptide (VIP). Using 2 types of mast cell–deficient mice, as well as mice selectively lacking CPA3 activity or the chymase mouse mast cell protease-4 (MCPT4), we found that mast cells and MCPT4, which can degrade helodermin, can enhance host resistance to the toxicity of Gila monster venom. Mast cells and MCPT4 also can limit the toxicity associated with high concentrations of VIP and can reduce the morbidity and mortality induced by venoms from 2 species of scorpions. Our findings support the notion that mast cells can enhance innate defense by degradation of diverse animal toxins and that release of MCPT4, in addition to CPA3, can contribute to this mast cell function. PMID:21926462

  4. Isolation, chemical and functional characterization of several new K(+)-channel blocking peptides from the venom of the scorpion Centruroides tecomanus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olamendi-Portugal, Timoteo; Bartok, Adam; Zamudio-Zuñiga, Fernando; Balajthy, Andras; Becerril, Baltazar; Panyi, Gyorgy; Possani, Lourival D

    2016-06-01

    Six new peptides were isolated from the venom of the Mexican scorpion Centruroides tecomanus; their primary structures were determined and the effects on ion channels were verified by patch-clamp experiments. Four are K(+)-channel blockers of the α-KTx family, containing 32 to 39 amino acid residues, cross-linked by three disulfide bonds. They all block Kv1.2 in nanomolar concentrations and show various degree of selectivity over Kv1.1, Kv1.3, Shaker and KCa3.1 channels. One peptide has 42 amino acids cross-linked by four disulfides; it blocks ERG-channels and belongs to the γ-KTx family. The sixth peptide has only 32 amino acid residues, three disulfide bonds and has no effect on the ion-channels assayed. It also does not have antimicrobial activity. Systematic numbers were assigned (time of elution on HPLC): α-KTx 10.4 (time 24.1); α-KTx 2.15 (time 26.2); α-KTx 2.16 (time 23.8); α-KTx 2.17 (time 26.7) and γ-KTx 1.9 (elution time 29.6). A partial proteomic analysis of the short chain basic peptides of this venom, which elutes on carboxy-methyl-cellulose column fractionation, is included. The pharmacological properties of the peptides described in this study may provide valuable tools for understanding the structure-function relationship of K(+) channel blocking scorpion toxins. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Crystal structure of pira toxin-I: a calcium-independent, myotoxic phospholipase A2 - homologue from Bothrops pirajai venom

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Canduri, R.J.; Ward, R.J.; Azevedo Junior, G.W.F. de; Arni, R.K.; Soares, A.M.; Giglio, J.R.

    1997-01-01

    Full text. Phospho lipases A2 (PLA 2 ) are small enzymes that specifically hydrolysed the sn-2 ester bond of phospholipids, preferentially in lamellar or micellar aggregates at membrane surfaces. These enzymes are widely distributed in nature and have been extensively studied. Toxic proteins from venoms from Bothrops species include catalytically active PLA 2 s and calcium independent PLA 2L ys 49 homologues. The substitution of Asp49 by Lys greatly diminishes the ability of these PLA 2 to bind calcium, an ion that plays a critical role in the stabilization of the tetrahedral transition state intermediate in the catalytic mechanism. The Lys 49 PLA 2 homologues and therefore catalytically inactive yet maintain cytolytic and myotoxic activities and furthermore retain the ability to disrupt the integrity of both plasma membranes and model lipid bilayers by a poorly understood Ca 2+ independente mechanism. Lys49 PLA 2 homologues demonstrate a specific toxic activity against skeletal muscle, affecting only muscle fibers and leaving other tissue structure such as connective tissue, nerves and vessels essentially unharmed. In order to improve our understanding of the molecular basis of the myotoxic and Ca 2+ -independent membrane damaging activities, we have determined the crystal structure of Pr TX-I, a Lys49 variant from the venom of B. pirajai. The model presented has been determined at 2.8 angstrom resolution and refined to a crystallographic residual of 19.7% (R free =29.7%). (author)

  6. Pulsed ultrasound therapy accelerates the recovery of skeletal muscle damage induced by Bothrops jararacussu venom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  7. Dual function of a bee (Apis cerana) inhibitor cysteine knot peptide that acts as an antifungal peptide and insecticidal venom toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Hee Geun; Kyung, Seung Su; Lee, Kwang Sik; Kim, Bo Yeon; Choi, Yong Soo; Yoon, Hyung Joo; Kwon, Hyung Wook; Je, Yeon Ho; Jin, Byung Rae

    2014-12-01

    Inhibitor cysteine knot (ICK) peptides exhibit ion channel blocking, insecticidal, and antimicrobial activities, but currently, no functional roles for bee-derived ICK peptides have been identified. In this study, a bee (Apis cerana) ICK peptide (AcICK) that acts as an antifungal peptide and as an insecticidal venom toxin was identified. AcICK contains an ICK fold that is expressed in the epidermis, fat body, or venom gland and is present as a 6.6-kDa peptide in bee venom. Recombinant AcICK peptide (expressed in baculovirus-infected insect cells) bound directly to Beauveria bassiana and Fusarium graminearum, but not to Escherichia coli or Bacillus thuringiensis. Consistent with these findings, AcICK showed antifungal activity, indicating that AcICK acts as an antifungal peptide. Furthermore, AcICK expression is induced in the fat body and epidermis after injection with B. bassiana. These results provide insight into the role of AcICK during the innate immune response following fungal infection. Additionally, we show that AcICK has insecticidal activity. Our results demonstrate a functional role for AcICK in bees: AcICK acts as an antifungal peptide in innate immune reactions in the body and as an insecticidal toxin in venom. The finding that the AcICK peptide functions with different mechanisms of action in the body and in venom highlights the two-pronged strategy that is possible with the bee ICK peptide. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Characterization and structural analysis of a potent anticoagulant phospholipase A2 from Pseudechis australis snake venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Du, Qianyun Sharon; Trabi, Manuela; Richards, Renée Stirling; Mirtschin, Peter; Madaras, Frank; Nouwens, Amanda; Zhao, Kong-Nan; de Jersey, John; Lavin, Martin F; Guddat, Luke W; Masci, Paul P

    2016-03-01

    Pseudechis australis is one of the most venomous and lethal snakes in Australia. Numerous phospholipase A2 (PLA2) isoforms constitute a major portion of its venom, some of which have previously been shown to exhibit not only enzymatic, but also haemolytic, neurotoxic and anticoagulant activities. Here, we have purified a potent anticoagulant PLA2 (identified as PA11) from P. australis venom to investigate its phospholipase, anticoagulant, haemolytic and cytotoxic activities and shown that addition of 11 nM PA11 resulted in a doubling of the clotting time of recalcified whole blood. We have also demonstrated that PA11 has high PLA2 enzymatic activity (10.9 × 10(4) Units/mg), but low haemolytic activity (0.6% of red blood cells hydrolysed in the presence of 1 nM PA11). PA11 at a concentration lower than 600 nM is not cytotoxic towards human cultured cells. Chemical modification experiments using p-bromophenacyl bromide have provided evidence that the catalytic histidine of PA11 is critical for the anticoagulant activity of this PLA2. PA11 that was subjected to trypsin digestion without previous reduction and alkylation of the disulfide bonds maintained enzymatic and anticoagulant activity, suggesting that proteolysis alone cannot abolish these properties. Consistent with these results, administration of PA11 by gavage in a rabbit stasis thrombosis model increased the clotting time of recalcified citrated whole blood by a factor of four. These data suggest that PA11 has potential to be developed as an anticoagulant in a clinical setting. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Victor Corasolla Carregari

    2013-01-01

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

  10. 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.

  11. Photon structure function - theory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bardeen, W.A.

    1984-12-01

    The theoretical status of the photon structure function is reviewed. Particular attention is paid to the hadronic mixing problem and the ability of perturbative QCD to make definitive predictions for the photon structure function. 11 references

  12. High spin structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khan, H.

    1990-01-01

    This thesis explores deep inelastic scattering of a lepton beam from a polarized nuclear target with spin J=1. After reviewing the formation for spin-1/2, the structure functions for a spin-1 target are defined in terms of the helicity amplitudes for forward compton scattering. A version of the convolution model, which incorporates relativistic and binding energy corrections is used to calculate the structure functions of a neutron target. A simple parameterization of these structure functions is given in terms of a few neutron wave function parameters and the free nucleon structure functions. This allows for an easy comparison of structure functions calculated using different neutron models. (author)

  13. Effects of Sweet Bee Venom on the Central Nervous System in Rats -using the Functional Observational Battery-

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joong Chul An

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Objectives: This study was performed to analyse the effects of Sweet Bee Venom(Sweet BV-pure melittin, the major component of honey bee venom on the central nervous system in rats. Methods: All experiments were conducted at Biotoxtech Company, a non-clinical studies authorized institution, under the regulations of Good Laboratory Practice (GLP. Male rats of 5 weeks old were chosen for this study and after confirming condition of rats was stable, Sweet BV was administered in thigh muscle of rats. And checked the effects of Sweet BV on the central nervous system using the functional observational battery (FOB, which is a neuro-toxicity screening assay composed of 30 descriptive, scalar, binary, and continuous endpoints. And home cage observations, home cage removal and handling, open field activity, sensorimotor reflex test/physiological measurements were conducted. Results: 1. In the home cage observation, there was not observed any abnormal signs in rats. 2. In the observation of open field activity, the reduction of number of unit areas crossed and rearing count was observed caused by Sweet BV treatment. 3. In the observation of handling reactivity, there was not observed any abnormal signs in rats. 4. In the observation of sensorimotor reflex tests/physiological measurements, there was not observed any neurotoxic signs in rats. 5. In the measurement of rectal temperature, treatment of Sweet BV did not showed great influences in the body temperature of rats. Conclusions: Above findings suggest that Sweet BV is relatively safe treatment in the central nervous system. But in the using of over dose, Sweet BV may the cause of local pain and disturbance of movement. Further studies on the subject should be conducted to yield more concrete evidences.

  14. Biochemical and immunological alterations of 60 Co irradiated Bothrops jararacussu venom

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Spencer, Patrick J.

    1995-01-01

    Proteins irradiation leads to structural alterations resulting in activity and function loss. This process has been useful to detoxify animal venoms and toxins, resulting in low toxicity products which increased immunogenicity. The Bothrops jararacussu venom behaves as a weak immunogen and its lethal activity in not neutralized by either autologous, heterologous or bothropic polyvalent antisera. This venom is markedly myotoxic and and the commercial bothropic antiserum does not neutralize this activity, because of this low immunogenicity of the myotoxins. This present work was done in order to evaluate the possibility of irradiating Bothrops jararacussu, intending to increase the immunogenicity of the myotoxic components, leading to productions of myotoxins neutralizing antibodies. Bothrops jararacussu venom samples were irradiated with 500, 1000 and 2000 Gy of 60 Co gamma rays. A 2.3 folds decrease of toxicity was observed for the 1000 Gy irradiated samples while the 2000 Gy irradiated sample was at least 3.7 folds attenuated. On the other hand, the 500 Gy did not promote any detoxification. Electrophoresis and HPLC data indicate that the irradiation lead to the formation of high molecular weight products (aggregates). The proteolytic and phospholipasic activities decreased in a dose dependent manner, the phospholipases being more resistant than the proteases. Both the animals (rabbit) immunized with either native or 2000 Gy irradiated venom produced native venom binding antibodies, a slightly higher titer being obtained in the serum of the rabbit immunized with the irradiated samples. Western blot data indicate that the anti-irradiated venom Ig Gs recognised a greater amount of either autologous or heterologous venom bands, both sera behaving as genus specific. The anti-native serum did not neutralize the myotoxic activity of native venom, while the anti-irradiated one was able to neutralize this activity. (author)

  15. Animal venoms as antimicrobial agents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perumal Samy, Ramar; Stiles, Bradley G; Franco, Octavio L; Sethi, Gautam; Lim, Lina H K

    2017-06-15

    Hospitals are breeding grounds for many life-threatening bacteria worldwide. Clinically associated gram-positive bacteria such as Staphylococcus aureus/methicillin-resistant S. aureus and many others increase the risk of severe mortality and morbidity. The failure of antibiotics to kill various pathogens due to bacterial resistance highlights the urgent need to develop novel, potent, and less toxic agents from natural sources against various infectious agents. Currently, several promising classes of natural molecules from snake (terrestrial and sea), scorpion, spider, honey bee and wasp venoms hold promise as rich sources of chemotherapeutics against infectious pathogens. Interestingly, snake venom-derived synthetic peptide/snake cathelicidin not only has potent antimicrobial and wound-repair activity but is highly stable and safe. Such molecules are promising candidates for novel venom-based drugs against S. aureus infections. The structure of animal venom proteins/peptides (cysteine rich) consists of hydrophobic α-helices or β-sheets that produce lethal pores and membrane-damaging effects on bacteria. All these antimicrobial peptides are under early experimental or pre-clinical stages of development. It is therefore important to employ novel tools for the design and the development of new antibiotics from the untapped animal venoms of snake, scorpion, and spider for treating resistant pathogens. To date, snail venom toxins have shown little antibiotic potency against human pathogens. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Coagulating Colubrids: Evolutionary, Pathophysiological and Biodiscovery Implications of Venom Variations between Boomslang (Dispholidus typus) and Twig Snake (Thelotornis mossambicanus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debono, Jordan; Dobson, James; Casewell, Nicholas R; Romilio, Anthony; Li, Bin; Kurniawan, Nyoman; Mardon, Karine; Weisbecker, Vera; Nouwens, Amanda; Kwok, Hang Fai; Fry, Bryan G

    2017-05-19

    Venoms can deleteriously affect any physiological system reachable by the bloodstream, including directly interfering with the coagulation cascade. Such coagulopathic toxins may be anticoagulants or procoagulants. Snake venoms are unique in their use of procoagulant toxins for predatory purposes. The boomslang ( Dispholidus typus ) and the twig snakes ( Thelotornis species) are iconic African snakes belonging to the family Colubridae. Both species produce strikingly similar lethal procoagulant pathologies. Despite these similarities, antivenom is only produced for treating bites by D. typus , and the mechanisms of action of both venoms have been understudied. In this study, we investigated the venom of D. typus and T. mossambicanus utilising a range of proteomic and bioactivity approaches, including determining the procoagulant properties of both venoms in relation to the human coagulation pathways. In doing so, we developed a novel procoagulant assay, utilising a Stago STA-R Max analyser, to accurately detect real time clotting in plasma at varying concentrations of venom. This approach was used to assess the clotting capabilities of the two venoms both with and without calcium and phospholipid co-factors. We found that T. mossambicanus produced a significantly stronger coagulation response compared to D. typus . Functional enzyme assays showed that T. mossambicanus also exhibited a higher metalloprotease and phospholipase activity but had a much lower serine protease activity relative to D. typus venom. The neutralising capability of the available boomslang antivenom was also investigated on both species, with it being 11.3 times more effective upon D. typus venom than T. mossambicanus . In addition to being a faster clotting venom, T. mossambicanus was revealed to be a much more complex venom composition than D. typus . This is consistent with patterns seen for other snakes with venom complexity linked to dietary complexity. Consistent with the external

  17. Coagulating Colubrids: Evolutionary, Pathophysiological and Biodiscovery Implications of Venom Variations between Boomslang (Dispholidus typus and Twig Snake (Thelotornis mossambicanus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jordan Debono

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Venoms can deleteriously affect any physiological system reachable by the bloodstream, including directly interfering with the coagulation cascade. Such coagulopathic toxins may be anticoagulants or procoagulants. Snake venoms are unique in their use of procoagulant toxins for predatory purposes. The boomslang (Dispholidus typus and the twig snakes (Thelotornis species are iconic African snakes belonging to the family Colubridae. Both species produce strikingly similar lethal procoagulant pathologies. Despite these similarities, antivenom is only produced for treating bites by D. typus, and the mechanisms of action of both venoms have been understudied. In this study, we investigated the venom of D. typus and T. mossambicanus utilising a range of proteomic and bioactivity approaches, including determining the procoagulant properties of both venoms in relation to the human coagulation pathways. In doing so, we developed a novel procoagulant assay, utilising a Stago STA-R Max analyser, to accurately detect real time clotting in plasma at varying concentrations of venom. This approach was used to assess the clotting capabilities of the two venoms both with and without calcium and phospholipid co-factors. We found that T. mossambicanus produced a significantly stronger coagulation response compared to D. typus. Functional enzyme assays showed that T. mossambicanus also exhibited a higher metalloprotease and phospholipase activity but had a much lower serine protease activity relative to D. typus venom. The neutralising capability of the available boomslang antivenom was also investigated on both species, with it being 11.3 times more effective upon D. typus venom than T. mossambicanus. In addition to being a faster clotting venom, T. mossambicanus was revealed to be a much more complex venom composition than D. typus. This is consistent with patterns seen for other snakes with venom complexity linked to dietary complexity. Consistent with the

  18. Venom evolution widespread in fishes: a phylogenetic road map for the bioprospecting of piscine venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, William Leo; Wheeler, Ward C

    2006-01-01

    Knowledge of evolutionary relationships or phylogeny allows for effective predictions about the unstudied characteristics of species. These include the presence and biological activity of an organism's venoms. To date, most venom bioprospecting has focused on snakes, resulting in six stroke and cancer treatment drugs that are nearing U.S. Food and Drug Administration review. Fishes, however, with thousands of venoms, represent an untapped resource of natural products. The first step involved in the efficient bioprospecting of these compounds is a phylogeny of venomous fishes. Here, we show the results of such an analysis and provide the first explicit suborder-level phylogeny for spiny-rayed fishes. The results, based on approximately 1.1 million aligned base pairs, suggest that, in contrast to previous estimates of 200 venomous fishes, >1,200 fishes in 12 clades should be presumed venomous. This assertion was corroborated by a detailed anatomical study examining potentially venomous structures in >100 species. The results of these studies not only alter our view of the diversity of venomous fishes, now representing >50% of venomous vertebrates, but also provide the predictive phylogeny or "road map" for the efficient search for potential pharmacological agents or physiological tools from the unexplored fish venoms.

  19. Serine Protease Variants Encoded by Echis ocellatus Venom Gland cDNA: Cloning and Sequencing Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. S. Hasson

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Envenoming by Echis saw-scaled viper is the leading cause of death and morbidity in Africa due to snake bite. Despite its medical importance, there have been few investigations into the toxin composition of the venom of this viper. Here, we report the cloning of cDNA sequences encoding four groups or isoforms of the haemostasis-disruptive Serine protease proteins (SPs from the venom glands of Echis ocellatus. All these SP sequences encoded the cysteine residues scaffold that form the 6-disulphide bonds responsible for the characteristic tertiary structure of venom serine proteases. All the Echis ocellatus EoSP groups showed varying degrees of sequence similarity to published viper venom SPs. However, these groups also showed marked intercluster sequence conservation across them which were significantly different from that of previously published viper SPs. Because viper venom SPs exhibit a high degree of sequence similarity and yet exert profoundly different effects on the mammalian haemostatic system, no attempt was made to assign functionality to the new Echis ocellatus EoSPs on the basis of sequence alone. The extraordinary level of interspecific and intergeneric sequence conservation exhibited by the Echis ocellatus EoSPs and analogous serine proteases from other viper species leads us to speculate that antibodies to representative molecules should neutralise (that we will exploit, by epidermal DNA immunization the biological function of this important group of venom toxins in vipers that are distributed throughout Africa, the Middle East, and the Indian subcontinent.

  20. Hadron structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Martin, F.

    1981-03-01

    The x dependence of hadron structure functions is investigated. If quarks can exist in very low mass states (10 MeV for d and u quarks) the pion structure function is predicted to behave like (1-x) and not (1-x) 2 in a x-region around 1. Relativistic and non-relativistic quark bound state pictures of hadrons are considered together with their relation with the Q 2 evolution of structure functions. Good agreement with data is in general obtained

  1. Photon structure function

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bardeen, W.A.

    1980-11-01

    Theoretical understanding of the photon structure function is reviewed. As an illustration of the pointlike component, the parton model is briefly discussed. However, the systematic study of the photon structure function is presented through the framework of the operator product expansion. Perturbative QCD is used as the theoretical basis for the calculation of leading contributions to the operator product expansion. The influence of higher order QCD effects on these results is discussed. Recent results for the polarized structure functions are discussed

  2. Structure-activity study of macropin, a novel antimicrobial peptide from the venom of solitary bee Macropis fulvipes (Hymenoptera: Melittidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monincová, Lenka; Veverka, Václav; Slaninová, Jiřina; Buděšínský, Miloš; Fučík, Vladimír; Bednárová, Lucie; Straka, Jakub; Ceřovský, Václav

    2014-06-01

    A novel antimicrobial peptide, designated macropin (MAC-1) with sequence Gly-Phe-Gly-Met-Ala-Leu-Lys-Leu-Leu-Lys-Lys-Val-Leu-NH2 , was isolated from the venom of the solitary bee Macropis fulvipes. MAC-1 exhibited antimicrobial activity against both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, antifungal activity, and moderate hemolytic activity against human red blood cells. A series of macropin analogs were prepared to further evaluate the effect of structural alterations on antimicrobial and hemolytic activities and stability in human serum. The antimicrobial activities of several analogs against pathogenic Pseudomonas aeruginosa were significantly increased while their toxicity against human red blood cells was decreased. The activity enhancement is related to the introduction of either l- or d-lysine in selected positions. Furthermore, all-d analog and analogs with d-amino acid residues introduced at the N-terminal part of the peptide chain exhibited better serum stability than did natural macropin. Data obtained by CD spectroscopy suggest a propensity of the peptide to adopt an amphipathic α-helical secondary structure in the presence of trifluoroethanol or membrane-mimicking sodium dodecyl sulfate. In addition, the study elucidates the structure-activity relationship for the effect of d-amino acid substitutions in MAC-1 using NMR spectroscopy. Copyright © 2014 European Peptide Society and John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2006-07-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alex Chapeaurouge

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marcinkiewicz, Cezary

    2013-01-01

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

  6. Pharmacological screening technologies for venom peptide discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prashanth, Jutty Rajan; Hasaballah, Nojod; Vetter, Irina

    2017-12-01

    Venomous animals occupy one of the most successful evolutionary niches and occur on nearly every continent. They deliver venoms via biting and stinging apparatuses with the aim to rapidly incapacitate prey and deter predators. This has led to the evolution of venom components that act at a number of biological targets - including ion channels, G-protein coupled receptors, transporters and enzymes - with exquisite selectivity and potency, making venom-derived components attractive pharmacological tool compounds and drug leads. In recent years, plate-based pharmacological screening approaches have been introduced to accelerate venom-derived drug discovery. A range of assays are amenable to this purpose, including high-throughput electrophysiology, fluorescence-based functional and binding assays. However, despite these technological advances, the traditional activity-guided fractionation approach is time-consuming and resource-intensive. The combination of screening techniques suitable for miniaturization with sequence-based discovery approaches - supported by advanced proteomics, mass spectrometry, chromatography as well as synthesis and expression techniques - promises to further improve venom peptide discovery. Here, we discuss practical aspects of establishing a pipeline for venom peptide drug discovery with a particular emphasis on pharmacology and pharmacological screening approaches. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'Venom-derived Peptides as Pharmacological Tools.' Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-09-15

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

  8. Venom and Dufour's glands of the emerald cockroach wasp Ampulex compressa (Insecta, Hymenoptera, Sphecidae): structural and biochemical aspects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gnatzy, Werner; Michels, Jan; Volknandt, Walter; Goller, Stephan; Schulz, Stefan

    2015-09-01

    The digger wasp species Ampulex compressa produces its venom in two branched gland tubules. They terminate in a short common duct, which is bifurcated at its proximal end. One leg is linked with the venom reservoir, the other one extends to the ductus venatus. Each venom gland tubule possesses, over its entire length, a cuticle-lined central duct. Around this duct densely packed class 3 gland units each composed of a secretory cell and a canal cell are arranged. The position of their nuclei was demonstrated by DAPI staining. The brush border of the secretory cells surrounds the coiled end-apparatus. Venom is stored in a bladder like reservoir, which is surrounded by a thin reticulated layer of muscle fibres. The reservoir as a whole is lined with class 3 gland units. The tubiform Dufour's gland has a length of about 350 μm (∅ 125 μm) only and is surrounded by a network of pronounced striated muscle fibres. The glandular epithelium is mono-layered belonging to the class 1 type of insect epidermal glands. The gland cells are characterized by conspicuous lipid vesicles. Secretion of material via the gland cuticle into the gland lumen is apparent. Analysis of the polypeptide composition demonstrated that the free gland tubules and the venom reservoir contain numerous proteins ranging from 3.4 to 200 kDa. The polypeptide composition of the Dufour's gland is completely different and contains no lectin-binding glycoproteins, whereas a dominant component of the venom droplets is a glycoprotein of about 80 kDa. Comparison of the venom reservoir contents with the polypeptide pattern of venom droplets revealed that all of the major proteinaceous constituents are secreted. The secreted venom contains exclusively proteins present in the soluble contents of the venom gland. The most abundant compound class in the Dufour's gland consisted of n-alkanes followed by monomethyl-branched alkanes and alkadienes. Heptacosane was the most abundant n-alkane. Furthermore, a single

  9. Unpolarized Structure Functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Christy, M.E.; Melnitchouk, W.

    2011-01-01

    Over the past decade measurements of unpolarized structure functions with unprecedented precision have significantly advanced our knowledge of nucleon structure. These have for the first time allowed quantitative tests of the phenomenon of quark-hadron duality, and provided a deeper understanding of the transition from hadron to quark degrees of freedom in inclusive scattering. Dedicated Rosenbluth-separation experiments have yielded high-precision transverse and longitudinal structure functions in regions previously unexplored, and new techniques have enabled the first glimpses of the structure of the free neutron, without contamination from nuclear effects.

  10. 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.

  11. Introduction to structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kwiecinski, J.

    1996-07-01

    The theory of deep inelastic scattering structure functions is reviewed with an emphasis put on the QCD expectations of their behaviour in the region of small values of Bjorken parameter x. (author). 56 refs

  12. Structure function monitor

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGraw, John T [Placitas, NM; Zimmer, Peter C [Albuquerque, NM; Ackermann, Mark R [Albuquerque, NM

    2012-01-24

    Methods and apparatus for a structure function monitor provide for generation of parameters characterizing a refractive medium. In an embodiment, a structure function monitor acquires images of a pupil plane and an image plane and, from these images, retrieves the phase over an aperture, unwraps the retrieved phase, and analyzes the unwrapped retrieved phase. In an embodiment, analysis yields atmospheric parameters measured at spatial scales from zero to the diameter of a telescope used to collect light from a source.

  13. Purely Functional Structured Programming

    OpenAIRE

    Obua, Steven

    2010-01-01

    The idea of functional programming has played a big role in shaping today's landscape of mainstream programming languages. Another concept that dominates the current programming style is Dijkstra's structured programming. Both concepts have been successfully married, for example in the programming language Scala. This paper proposes how the same can be achieved for structured programming and PURELY functional programming via the notion of LINEAR SCOPE. One advantage of this proposal is that m...

  14. Structural and biological characterization of three novel mastoparan peptides from the venom of the neotropical social wasp Protopolybia exigua (Saussure).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mendes, Maria Anita; de Souza, Bibiana Monson; Palma, Mario Sergio

    2005-01-01

    The venom of the Neotropical social wasp Protopolybia exigua(Saussure) was fractionated by RP-HPLC resulting in the elution of 20 fractions. The homogeneity of the preparations were checked out by using ESI-MS analysis and the fractions 15, 17 and 19 (eluted at the most hydrophobic conditions) were enough pure to be sequenced by Edman degradation chemistry, resulting in the following sequences: Protopolybia MPI I-N-W-L-K-L-G-K-K-V-S-A-I-L-NH2 Protopolybia-MP II I-N-W-K-A-I-I-E-A-A-K-Q-A-L-NH2 Protopolybia-MP III I-N-W-L-K-L-G-K-A-V-I-D-A-L-NH2 All the peptides were manually synthesized on-solid phase and functionally characterized. Protopolybia-MP I is a hemolytic mastoparan, probably acting on mast cells by assembling in plasma membrane, resulting in pore formation; meanwhile, the peptides Protopolybia-MP II and -MP III were characterized as a non-hemolytic mast cell degranulator toxins, which apparently act by virtue of their binding to G-protein receptor, activating the mast cell degranulation.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  16. Fibrin(ogen)olytic activity of bumblebee venom serine protease

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Qiu Yuling; Choo, Young Moo; Yoon, Hyung Joo; Jia Jingming; Cui Zheng; Wang Dong; Kim, Doh Hoon; Sohn, Hung Dae; Jin, Byung Rae

    2011-01-01

    Bee venom is a rich source of pharmacologically active components; it has been used as an immunotherapy to treat bee venom hypersensitivity, and venom therapy has been applied as an alternative medicine. Here, we present evidence that the serine protease found in bumblebee venom exhibits fibrin(ogen)olytic activity. Compared to honeybee venom, bumblebee venom contains a higher content of serine protease, which is one of its major components. Venom serine proteases from bumblebees did not cross-react with antibodies against the honeybee venom serine protease. We provide functional evidence indicating that bumblebee (Bombus terrestris) venom serine protease (Bt-VSP) acts as a fibrin(ogen)olytic enzyme. Bt-VSP activates prothrombin and directly degrades fibrinogen into fibrin degradation products. However, Bt-VSP is not a plasminogen activator, and its fibrinolytic activity is less than that of plasmin. Taken together, our results define roles for Bt-VSP as a prothrombin activator, a thrombin-like protease, and a plasmin-like protease. These findings offer significant insight into the allergic reaction sequence that is initiated by bee venom serine protease and its potential usefulness as a clinical agent in the field of hemostasis and thrombosis. - Graphical abstract: Display Omitted Highlights: → Bumblebee venom serine protease (Bt-VSP) is a fibrin(ogen)olytic enzyme. → Bt-VSP activates prothrombin. → Bt-VSP directly degrades fibrinogen into fibrin degradation products. → Bt-VSP is a hemostatically active protein that is a potent clinical agent.

  17. Chromatin Structure and Function

    CERN Document Server

    Wolffe, Alan P

    1999-01-01

    The Third Edition of Chromatin: Structure and Function brings the reader up-to-date with the remarkable progress in chromatin research over the past three years. It has been extensively rewritten to cover new material on chromatin remodeling, histone modification, nuclear compartmentalization, DNA methylation, and transcriptional co-activators and co-repressors. The book is written in a clear and concise fashion, with 60 new illustrations. Chromatin: Structure and Function provides the reader with a concise and coherent account of the nature, structure, and assembly of chromatin and its active

  18. Nucleon structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Virchaux, M.

    1992-11-01

    The present status of experimental measurements of the nucleon structure functions is reviewed. The results from nearly all deep inelastic experiments are in good mutual agreement. Principles of the analysis of these structure function data in the framework of QCD are described. The specific features of the perturbative QCD predictions are observed in the data. This provides quantitative tests of the validity of QCD as well as determinations of the various parton distributions in the nucleon and some of the most precise measurements of the strong coupling constant αs. The future of this field of experimental physics is sketched

  19. Computational Studies of Snake Venom Toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ojeda, Paola G; Ramírez, David; Alzate-Morales, Jans; Caballero, Julio; Kaas, Quentin; González, Wendy

    2017-12-22

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

  20. Computational Studies of Snake Venom Toxins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paola G. Ojeda

    2017-12-01

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

  1. DNA: Structure and function

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sinden, Richard R.; E. Pearson, Christopher; N. Potaman, Vladimir

    1998-01-01

    This chapter discusses the structure and function of DNA. DNA occupies a critical role in cells, because it is the source of all intrinsic genetic information. Chemically, DNA is a very stable molecule, a characteristic important for a macromolecule that may have to persist in an intact form...

  2. House spider genome uncovers evolutionary shifts in the diversity and expression of black widow venom proteins associated with extreme toxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gendreau, Kerry L; Haney, Robert A; Schwager, Evelyn E; Wierschin, Torsten; Stanke, Mario; Richards, Stephen; Garb, Jessica E

    2017-02-16

    Black widow spiders are infamous for their neurotoxic venom, which can cause extreme and long-lasting pain. This unusual venom is dominated by latrotoxins and latrodectins, two protein families virtually unknown outside of the black widow genus Latrodectus, that are difficult to study given the paucity of spider genomes. Using tissue-, sex- and stage-specific expression data, we analyzed the recently sequenced genome of the house spider (Parasteatoda tepidariorum), a close relative of black widows, to investigate latrotoxin and latrodectin diversity, expression and evolution. We discovered at least 47 latrotoxin genes in the house spider genome, many of which are tandem-arrayed. Latrotoxins vary extensively in predicted structural domains and expression, implying their significant functional diversification. Phylogenetic analyses show latrotoxins have substantially duplicated after the Latrodectus/Parasteatoda split and that they are also related to proteins found in endosymbiotic bacteria. Latrodectin genes are less numerous than latrotoxins, but analyses show their recruitment for venom function from neuropeptide hormone genes following duplication, inversion and domain truncation. While latrodectins and other peptides are highly expressed in house spider and black widow venom glands, latrotoxins account for a far smaller percentage of house spider venom gland expression. The house spider genome sequence provides novel insights into the evolution of venom toxins once considered unique to black widows. Our results greatly expand the size of the latrotoxin gene family, reinforce its narrow phylogenetic distribution, and provide additional evidence for the lateral transfer of latrotoxins between spiders and bacterial endosymbionts. Moreover, we strengthen the evidence for the evolution of latrodectin venom genes from the ecdysozoan Ion Transport Peptide (ITP)/Crustacean Hyperglycemic Hormone (CHH) neuropeptide superfamily. The lower expression of latrotoxins in

  3. Structure-activity study of macropin, a novel antimicrobial peptide from the venom of solitary bee Macropis fulvipes (Hymenoptera: Melittidae)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Monincová, Lenka; Veverka, Václav; Slaninová, Jiřina; Buděšínský, Miloš; Fučík, Vladimír; Bednárová, Lucie; Straka, J.; Čeřovský, Václav

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 20, č. 6 (2014), s. 375-384 ISSN 1075-2617 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA203/08/0536 Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : antimicrobial peptide * analog * wild bee venom * NMR spectroscopy * CD spectroscopy Subject RIV: CE - Biochemistry Impact factor: 1.546, year: 2014

  4. Structural aspects of crotalic venom proteins modified by ionizing radiation; Aspectos estruturais de proteinas do veneno crotalico modificadas por radiacao ionizante

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oliveira, Karina Corleto de

    2010-07-01

    Snake bites are a serious public health problem, especially in subtropical countries. In Brazil, the Ministry of Health notified around 26 000 accidents in 2008. The genus Crotalus (rattlesnakes) accounts for approximately 7% of the total, with a high mortality rate of 72% when untreated with the specific serum, the only effective treatment in case of snake bites. In Brazil, the serum is produced in horses which, despite the large size, have a reduced lifespan due to the high toxicity of the antigen. Ionizing radiation has proven to be an excellent tool for reducing the toxicity of venoms and isolated toxins, resulting in better immunogens for serum production, and contributing to the welfare of serum producing animals. Since the action of gamma radiation on venoms and toxins has not been yet fully clarified from the structural point of view, we proposed in this paper, to characterize two toxins of the species Crotalus durissus terrificus: crotoxin and crotamine. After isolation of the toxins of interest by chromatographic techniques, they were subjected to structural analysis with the application of the following methods: Fluorescence, Circular Dichroism, Differential Calorimetry and Infrared Spectroscopy. These tests showed that both crotamine as crotoxin when subjected to gamma radiation, showed changes in their structural conformation compared with the samples in the native state. Such changes probably occur in the secondary and tertiary structure and may explain the changes on the biological activity of these toxins. (author)

  5. 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

  6. Inventing an arsenal: adaptive evolution and neofunctionalization of snake venom phospholipase A2 genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lynch Vincent J

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Gene duplication followed by functional divergence has long been hypothesized to be the main source of molecular novelty. Convincing examples of neofunctionalization, however, remain rare. Snake venom phospholipase A2 genes are members of large multigene families with many diverse functions, thus they are excellent models to study the emergence of novel functions after gene duplications. Results Here, I show that positive Darwinian selection and neofunctionalization is common in snake venom phospholipase A2 genes. The pattern of gene duplication and positive selection indicates that adaptive molecular evolution occurs immediately after duplication events as novel functions emerge and continues as gene families diversify and are refined. Surprisingly, adaptive evolution of group-I phospholipases in elapids is also associated with speciation events, suggesting adaptation of the phospholipase arsenal to novel prey species after niche shifts. Mapping the location of sites under positive selection onto the crystal structure of phospholipase A2 identified regions evolving under diversifying selection are located on the molecular surface and are likely protein-protein interactions sites essential for toxin functions. Conclusion These data show that increases in genomic complexity (through gene duplications can lead to phenotypic complexity (venom composition and that positive Darwinian selection is a common evolutionary force in snake venoms. Finally, regions identified under selection on the surface of phospholipase A2 enzymes are potential candidate sites for structure based antivenin design.

  7. New findings from the first transcriptome of the Bothrops moojeni snake venom gland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amorim, Fernanda Gobbi; Morandi-Filho, Romualdo; Fujimura, Patricia Tieme; Ueira-Vieira, Carlos; Sampaio, Suely Vilela

    2017-12-15

    Snakebites are a serious health problem in tropical countries. In Brazil, the genus Bothrops (Viperidae family) causes most of the ophidic accidents, characterized by proteolysis and haemorrhage. Snake venoms are rich sources of toxins with great therapeutic and biotechnological potential and omics approaches is a valuable tool for identification of new bioactive components in the venom. In this study, we described the first transcriptome of the venom gland of Bothrops moojeni snake, using the next-generation sequencing with the Illumina platform. We identified: (i) 20 venom components classes, among which metalloproteases were the most expressed ones, followed by serine proteases and phospholipases; and (ii) the 33 full-length amino acid sequences of toxins that have never been reported before in B. moojeni venom, such as one cysteine-rich secretory protein (Moojin), two hyaluronidases (BmooHyal-1 and BmooHyal-2), and one three-finger toxin (Bmoo-3FTx). Altogether, the transcripts identified herein represent a starting point for the analysis of structure-function relationships of toxins, which shall help develop novel biological tools and therapeutic drugs. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Pharmacokinetics of Snake Venom

    OpenAIRE

    Suchaya Sanhajariya; Stephen B. Duffull; Geoffrey K. Isbister

    2018-01-01

    Understanding snake venom pharmacokinetics is essential for developing risk assessment strategies and determining the optimal dose and timing of antivenom required to bind all venom in snakebite patients. This review aims to explore the current knowledge of snake venom pharmacokinetics in animals and humans. Literature searches were conducted using EMBASE (1974–present) and Medline (1946–present). For animals, 12 out of 520 initially identified studies met the inclusion criteria. In general, ...

  9. Treating autoimmune disorders with venom-derived peptides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Bingzheng; Cao, Zhijian; Li, Wenxin; Sabatier, Jean-Marc; Wu, Yingliang

    2017-09-01

    The effective treatment of autoimmune diseases remains a challenge. Voltage-gated potassium Kv1.3 channels, which are expressed in lymphocytes, are a new therapeutic target for treating autoimmune disease. Consequently, Kv1.3 channel-inhibiting venom-derived peptides are a prospective resource for new drug discovery and clinical application. Area covered: Preclinical and clinical studies have produced a wealth of information on Kv1.3 channel-inhibiting venom-derived peptides, especially from venomous scorpions and sea anemones. This review highlights the advances in screening and design of these peptides with diverse structures and potencies. It focuses on representative strategies for improving peptide selectivity and discusses the preclinical research on those venom-derived peptides as well as their clinical developmental status. Expert opinion: Encouraging results indicate that peptides isolated from the venom of venomous animals are a large resource for discovering immunomodulators that act on Kv1.3 channels. Since the structural diversity of venom-derived peptides determines the variety of their pharmacological activities, the design and optimization of venom-peptides for improved Kv1.3 channel-specificity has been advanced through some representative strategies, such as peptide chemical modification, amino acid residue truncation and binding interface modulation. These advances should further accelerate research, development and the future clinical application of venom-derived peptides selectively targeting Kv1.3 channels.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Costa, H.; Boni-Mitake, M.; Souza, C.F.; Rogero, J.R.

    1999-01-01

    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 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 50 ) has been performed with both venoms, and irradiated venom showed to be less toxic than native one. (author)

  11. 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.

  12. Allergens in Hymenoptera venom. XXV: The amino acid sequences of antigen 5 molecules and the structural basis of antigenic cross-reactivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffman, D R

    1993-11-01

    The complete amino acid sequences have been determined by solid-phase protein sequencing for eight different vespid venom antigen 5 molecules. These include five species of yellow jackets, Vespula squamosa, V. flavopilosa, V. germanica, V. pensylvanica and V. vidua, representing all three species groups; two variants from the European hornet, Vespa crabro; and a species of paper wasp, Polistes fuscatus, from a second subgenus. The new sequences were compared with the seven previously published sequences from yellow jackets, hornets, and wasps, and to that of Solenopsis invicta 3 allergen from imported fire ant venom. These comparisons provided structural evidence to support the observed high degree of cross-reactivity among the antigens of the common group of yellow jackets and among those of the two common North American subgenera of paper wasps studied. The antigen 5 of V. squamosa and of V. vidua were significantly different from those of the vulgaris group. Common features that could generate immunologic cross-reactivity were seen among the antigen 5 molecules of hornets of both genera and among those of yellow jackets, hornets, and paper wasps. The imported fire ant allergen has only minimal conserved areas in common with the vespid allergens, which explains the lack of observed IgE cross-reactivity. These results provide the structural basis for the cross-reactivity patterns observed in clinical practice and suggest that the commercial extracts of yellow jacket and paper wasp could be prepared with fewer carefully selected species.

  13. Immunology of Bee Venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elieh Ali Komi, Daniel; Shafaghat, Farzaneh; Zwiener, Ricardo D

    2017-01-20

    Bee venom is a blend of biochemicals ranging from small peptides and enzymes to biogenic amines. It is capable of triggering severe immunologic reactions owing to its allergenic fraction. Venom components are presented to the T cells by antigen-presenting cells within the skin. These Th2 type T cells then release IL-4 and IL-13 which subsequently direct B cells to class switch to production of IgE. Generating venom-specific IgE and crosslinking FcεR1(s) on the surface of mast cells complete the sensitizing stage in allergic individuals who are most likely to experience severe and even fatal allergic reactions after being stung. Specific IgE for bee venom is a double-edged sword as it is a powerful mediator in triggering allergic events but is also applied successfully in diagnosis of the venom allergic patient. The healing capacity of bee venom has been rediscovered under laboratory-controlled conditions using animal models and cell cultures. The potential role of enzymatic fraction of bee venom including phospholipase A2 in the initiation and development of immune responses also has been studied in numerous research settings. Undoubtedly, having insights into immunologic interactions between bee venom components and innate/specific immune cells both locally and systematically will contribute to the development of immunologic strategies in specific and epitope-based immunotherapy especially in individuals with Hymenoptera venom allergy.

  14. Plasmodesmata: Structure and Function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas David Geydan

    2006-07-01

    Full Text Available Plasmodesmata are channels that transverse the cell wall and membrane. These specialized and non passive channels act like gates that facilitate and regulate both communication and transportation of molecules such as water, nutrients, metabolites and macromolecules between plant cells. In the last decade a new point of view of plasmodesmata has emerged, and studies have  demonstrated that these channels are more complex. In this brief note, we pretend to expose the actual knowledge of plasmodesmata, focusing on their structure and function.

  15. Biochemical and immunological alterations of {sup 60} Co irradiated Bothrops jararacussu venom; Alteracoes bioquimicas e imunologicas do veneno de Bothrops jararacussu irradiado com {sup 60} Co

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Spencer, Patrick J.

    1995-12-31

    Proteins irradiation leads to structural alterations resulting in activity and function loss. This process has been useful to detoxify animal venoms and toxins, resulting in low toxicity products which increased immunogenicity. The Bothrops jararacussu venom behaves as a weak immunogen and its lethal activity in not neutralized by either autologous, heterologous or bothropic polyvalent antisera. This venom is markedly myotoxic and and the commercial bothropic antiserum does not neutralize this activity, because of this low immunogenicity of the myotoxins. This present work was done in order to evaluate the possibility of irradiating Bothrops jararacussu, intending to increase the immunogenicity of the myotoxic components, leading to productions of myotoxins neutralizing antibodies. Bothrops jararacussu venom samples were irradiated with 500, 1000 and 2000 Gy of {sup 60} Co gamma rays. A 2.3 folds decrease of toxicity was observed for the 1000 Gy irradiated samples while the 2000 Gy irradiated sample was at least 3.7 folds attenuated. On the other hand, the 500 Gy did not promote any detoxification. Electrophoresis and HPLC data indicate that the irradiation lead to the formation of high molecular weight products (aggregates). The proteolytic and phospholipasic activities decreased in a dose dependent manner, the phospholipases being more resistant than the proteases. Both the animals (rabbit) immunized with either native or 2000 Gy irradiated venom produced native venom binding antibodies, a slightly higher titer being obtained in the serum of the rabbit immunized with the irradiated samples. Western blot data indicate that the anti-irradiated venom Ig Gs recognised a greater amount of either autologous or heterologous venom bands, both sera behaving as genus specific. The anti-native serum did not neutralize the myotoxic activity of native venom, while the anti-irradiated one was able to neutralize this activity. (author). 56 refs., 7 figs.

  16. First extensive characterization of the venom gland from an egg parasitoid

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cusumano, Antonino; Duvic, Bernard; Jouan, Véronique; Ravallec, Marc; Legeai, Fabrice; Peri, Ezio; Colazza, Stefano; Volkoff, Anne Nathalie

    2018-01-01

    The venom gland is a ubiquitous organ in Hymenoptera. In insect parasitoids, the venom gland has been shown to have multiple functions including regulation of host immune response, host paralysis, host castration and developmental alteration. However, the role played by the venom gland has been

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

    OpenAIRE

    Vonk, Freek J.; Casewell, Nicholas R.; Henkel, Christiaan V.; Heimberg, Alysha M.; Jansen, Hans J.; McCleary, Ryan J. R.; Kerkkamp, Harald M. E.; Vos, Rutger A.; Guerreiro, Isabel; Calvete, Juan J.; Wüster, Wolfgang; Woods, Anthony E.; Logan, Jessica M.; Harrison, Robert A.; Castoe, Todd A.

    2013-01-01

    Snakes are limbless predators, and many species use venom to help overpower relatively large, agile prey. Snake venoms are complex protein mixtures encoded by several multilocus gene families that function synergistically to cause incapacitation. To examine venom evolution, we sequenced and interrogated the genome of a venomous snake, the king cobra (Ophiophagus hannah), and compared it, together with our unique transcriptome, microRNA, and proteome datasets from this species, with data from ...

  18. Differential Properties of Venom Peptides and Proteins in Solitary vs. Social Hunting Wasps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Si Hyeock; Baek, Ji Hyeong; Yoon, Kyungjae Andrew

    2016-01-01

    The primary functions of venoms from solitary and social wasps are different. Whereas most solitary wasps sting their prey to paralyze and preserve it, without killing, as the provisions for their progeny, social wasps usually sting to defend their colonies from vertebrate predators. Such distinctive venom properties of solitary and social wasps suggest that the main venom components are likely to be different depending on the wasps’ sociality. The present paper reviews venom components and properties of the Aculeata hunting wasps, with a particular emphasis on the comparative aspects of venom compositions and properties between solitary and social wasps. Common components in both solitary and social wasp venoms include hyaluronidase, phospholipase A2, metalloendopeptidase, etc. Although it has been expected that more diverse bioactive components with the functions of prey inactivation and physiology manipulation are present in solitary wasps, available studies on venom compositions of solitary wasps are simply too scarce to generalize this notion. Nevertheless, some neurotoxic peptides (e.g., pompilidotoxin and dendrotoxin-like peptide) and proteins (e.g., insulin-like peptide binding protein) appear to be specific to solitary wasp venom. In contrast, several proteins, such as venom allergen 5 protein, venom acid phosphatase, and various phospholipases, appear to be relatively more specific to social wasp venom. Finally, putative functions of main venom components and their application are also discussed. PMID:26805885

  19. Structural and biophysical studies with the MjTX-I, a Lys49-phospholipase A2 homologue from Bothrops moojeni venom

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Salvador, G.H.M.; Fernandes, C.A.H.; Fernandez, R.M.; Fontes, M.R.M.; Marchi-Salvador, D.P.; Soares, A.M.; Oliveira, C.L.P

    2012-01-01

    Full text: Phospholipases A 2 (PLA 2 ) are small proteins found in a great diversity of organisms and belong to a superfamily of proteins involved in many important pharmacological processes, such as neurotoxicity, myotoxicity, platelet aggregation, and anticoagulant activity. Ophidic accidents caused by snakes from Bothrops genus are not efficiently neutralized by conventional serum therapy, and then detailed studies with this class of proteins may be very important to supplement this conventional therapy. Miotoxin-I (MjTX-I) is a basic Lys49-PLA 2 , isolated from Bothrops moojeni snake venom, which induces a drastic local myonecrosis. Crystal structure of MjTX-I shows four molecules in the asymmetric unit, an unusually oligomeric conformation for snake venom Lys49-PLA 2 s. However, bioinformatics techniques indicate a dimer as the biological oligomeric conformation. To get additional information of its biological conformation, we also performed Dynamic Light Scattering, Size Exclusion Chromatography and Small Angle X-ray Scattering experiments. These techniques showed a monomer as the most probable biological conformation in water; however small changes in pH and ionic strength result in different oligomeric assemblies. These novel information for Lys49-PLA 2 s may result in important conclusions for this intriguing class of toxins. (author)

  20. Structural and biophysical studies with the MjTX-I, a Lys49-phospholipase A{sub 2} homologue from Bothrops moojeni venom

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Salvador, G.H.M.; Fernandes, C.A.H.; Fernandez, R.M.; Fontes, M.R.M. [UNESP, Universidade Estadual Paulista, Botucatu, SP (Brazil); Marchi-Salvador, D.P. [Universidade Federal da Paraiba (UFPB), Joao Pessoa, PB (Brazil); Soares, A.M. [Universidade de Sao Paulo (USP-RP), Ribeirao Preto, SP (Brazil); Oliveira, C.L.P [Universidade de Sao Paulo (USP), SP (Brazil)

    2012-07-01

    Full text: Phospholipases A{sub 2} (PLA{sub 2}) are small proteins found in a great diversity of organisms and belong to a superfamily of proteins involved in many important pharmacological processes, such as neurotoxicity, myotoxicity, platelet aggregation, and anticoagulant activity. Ophidic accidents caused by snakes from Bothrops genus are not efficiently neutralized by conventional serum therapy, and then detailed studies with this class of proteins may be very important to supplement this conventional therapy. Miotoxin-I (MjTX-I) is a basic Lys49-PLA{sub 2}, isolated from Bothrops moojeni snake venom, which induces a drastic local myonecrosis. Crystal structure of MjTX-I shows four molecules in the asymmetric unit, an unusually oligomeric conformation for snake venom Lys49-PLA{sub 2}s. However, bioinformatics techniques indicate a dimer as the biological oligomeric conformation. To get additional information of its biological conformation, we also performed Dynamic Light Scattering, Size Exclusion Chromatography and Small Angle X-ray Scattering experiments. These techniques showed a monomer as the most probable biological conformation in water; however small changes in pH and ionic strength result in different oligomeric assemblies. These novel information for Lys49-PLA{sub 2}s may result in important conclusions for this intriguing class of toxins. (author)

  1. Isolation, N-glycosylations and Function of a Hyaluronidase-Like Enzyme from the Venom of the Spider Cupiennius salei.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olivier Biner

    Full Text Available Hyaluronidases are important venom components acting as spreading factor of toxic compounds. In several studies this spreading effect was tested on vertebrate tissue. However, data about the spreading activity on invertebrates, the main prey organisms of spiders, are lacking. Here, a hyaluronidase-like enzyme was isolated from the venom of the spider Cupiennius salei. The amino acid sequence of the enzyme was determined by cDNA analysis of the venom gland transcriptome and confirmed by protein analysis. Two complex N-linked glycans akin to honey bee hyaluronidase glycosylations, were identified by tandem mass spectrometry. A C-terminal EGF-like domain was identified in spider hyaluronidase using InterPro. The spider hyaluronidase-like enzyme showed maximal activity at acidic pH, between 40-60°C, and 0.2 M KCl. Divalent ions did not enhance HA degradation activity, indicating that they are not recruited for catalysis.Besides hyaluronan, the enzyme degrades chondroitin sulfate A, whereas heparan sulfate and dermatan sulfate are not affected. The end products of hyaluronan degradation are tetramers, whereas chondroitin sulfate A is mainly degraded to hexamers. Identification of terminal N-acetylglucosamine or N-acetylgalactosamine at the reducing end of the oligomers identified the enzyme as an endo-β-N-acetyl-D-hexosaminidase hydrolase. The spreading effect of the hyaluronidase-like enzyme on invertebrate tissue was studied by coinjection of the enzyme with the Cupiennius salei main neurotoxin CsTx-1 into Drosophila flies. The enzyme significantly enhances the neurotoxic activity of CsTx-1. Comparative substrate degradation tests with hyaluronan, chondroitin sulfate A, dermatan sulfate, and heparan sulfate with venoms from 39 spider species from 21 families identified some spider families (Atypidae, Eresidae, Araneidae and Nephilidae without activity of hyaluronidase-like enzymes. This is interpreted as a loss of this enzyme and fits quite well

  2. Serine protease isoforms in Gloydius intermedius venom: Full sequences, molecular phylogeny and evolutionary implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Zhang-Min; Yu, Hui; Liu, Zhen-Zhen; Pei, Jian-Zhu; Yang, Yu-E; Yan, Su-Xian; Zhang, Cui; Zhao, Wen-Long; Wang, Zhe-Zhi; Wang, Ying-Ming; Tsai, Inn-Ho

    2017-07-05

    Nine distinct venom serine proteases (vSPs) of Gloydius intermedius were studied by transcriptomic, sub-proteomic and phylogenetic analyses. Their complete amino acid sequences were deduced after Expression Sequence Tag (EST) analyses followed by cDNA cloning and sequencing. These vSPs appear to be paralogs and contain the catalytic triads and 1-4 potential N-glycosylation sites. Their relative expression levels evaluated by qPCR were grossly consistent with their EST hit-numbers. The major vSPs were purified by HPLC and their N-terminal sequences matched well to the deduced sequences, while fragments of the minor vSPs were detected by LC-MS/MS identification. Specific amidolytic activities of the fractions from HPLC and anion exchange separation were assayed using four chromogenic substrates, respectively. Molecular phylogenetic tree based on the sequences of these vSPs and their orthologs revealed six major clusters, one of them covered four lineages of plasminogen activator like vSPs. N-glycosylation patterns and variations for the vSPs are discussed. The high sequence similarities between G. intermedius vSPs and their respective orthologs from American pitvipers suggest that most of the isoforms evolved before Asian pitvipers migrated to the New World. Our results also indicate that the neurotoxic venoms contain more kallikrein-like vSPs and hypotensive components than the hemorrhagic venoms. Full sequences and expression levels of nine paralogous serine proteases (designated as GiSPs) of Gloydius intermedius venom have been studied. A kallikrein-like enzyme is most abundant and four isoforms homologous to venom plasminogen-activators are also expressed in this venom. Taken together, the present and previous data demonstrate that the neurotoxic G. intermedius venoms contain more hypotensive vSPs relative to other hemorrhagic pitviper venoms and the pitviper vSPs are highly versatile and diverse. Their structure-function relationships remain to be explored and

  3. Coralsnake Venomics: Analyses of Venom Gland Transcriptomes and Proteomes of Six Brazilian Taxa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aird, Steven D; da Silva, Nelson Jorge; Qiu, Lijun; Villar-Briones, Alejandro; Saddi, Vera Aparecida; Pires de Campos Telles, Mariana; Grau, Miguel L; Mikheyev, Alexander S

    2017-06-08

    Venom gland transcriptomes and proteomes of six Micrurus taxa ( M. corallinus , M. lemniscatus carvalhoi , M. lemniscatus lemniscatus , M. paraensis , M. spixii spixii , and M. surinamensis ) were investigated, providing the most comprehensive, quantitative data on Micrurus venom composition to date, and more than tripling the number of Micrurus venom protein sequences previously available. The six venomes differ dramatically. All are dominated by 2-6 toxin classes that account for 91-99% of the toxin transcripts. The M. s. spixii venome is compositionally the simplest. In it, three-finger toxins (3FTxs) and phospholipases A₂ (PLA₂s) comprise >99% of the toxin transcripts, which include only four additional toxin families at levels ≥0.1%. Micrurus l. lemniscatus venom is the most complex, with at least 17 toxin families. However, in each venome, multiple structural subclasses of 3FTXs and PLA₂s are present. These almost certainly differ in pharmacology as well. All venoms also contain phospholipase B and vascular endothelial growth factors. Minor components (0.1-2.0%) are found in all venoms except that of M. s. spixii . Other toxin families are present in all six venoms at trace levels (venom components differ in each venom. Numerous novel toxin chemistries include 3FTxs with previously unknown 8- and 10-cysteine arrangements, resulting in new 3D structures and target specificities. 9-cysteine toxins raise the possibility of covalent, homodimeric 3FTxs or heterodimeric toxins with unknown pharmacologies. Probable muscarinic sequences may be reptile-specific homologs that promote hypotension via vascular mAChRs. The first complete sequences are presented for 3FTxs putatively responsible for liberating glutamate from rat brain synaptosomes. Micrurus C-type lectin-like proteins may have 6-9 cysteine residues and may be monomers, or homo- or heterodimers of unknown pharmacology. Novel KSPIs, 3× longer than any seen previously, appear to have arisen in three

  4. Coralsnake Venomics: Analyses of Venom Gland Transcriptomes and Proteomes of Six Brazilian Taxa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven D. Aird

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Venom gland transcriptomes and proteomes of six Micrurus taxa (M. corallinus, M. lemniscatus carvalhoi, M. lemniscatus lemniscatus, M. paraensis, M. spixii spixii, and M. surinamensis were investigated, providing the most comprehensive, quantitative data on Micrurus venom composition to date, and more than tripling the number of Micrurus venom protein sequences previously available. The six venomes differ dramatically. All are dominated by 2–6 toxin classes that account for 91–99% of the toxin transcripts. The M. s. spixii venome is compositionally the simplest. In it, three-finger toxins (3FTxs and phospholipases A2 (PLA2s comprise >99% of the toxin transcripts, which include only four additional toxin families at levels ≥0.1%. Micrurus l. lemniscatus venom is the most complex, with at least 17 toxin families. However, in each venome, multiple structural subclasses of 3FTXs and PLA2s are present. These almost certainly differ in pharmacology as well. All venoms also contain phospholipase B and vascular endothelial growth factors. Minor components (0.1–2.0% are found in all venoms except that of M. s. spixii. Other toxin families are present in all six venoms at trace levels (<0.005%. Minor and trace venom components differ in each venom. Numerous novel toxin chemistries include 3FTxs with previously unknown 8- and 10-cysteine arrangements, resulting in new 3D structures and target specificities. 9-cysteine toxins raise the possibility of covalent, homodimeric 3FTxs or heterodimeric toxins with unknown pharmacologies. Probable muscarinic sequences may be reptile-specific homologs that promote hypotension via vascular mAChRs. The first complete sequences are presented for 3FTxs putatively responsible for liberating glutamate from rat brain synaptosomes. Micrurus C-type lectin-like proteins may have 6–9 cysteine residues and may be monomers, or homo- or heterodimers of unknown pharmacology. Novel KSPIs, 3× longer than any seen

  5. Bee Venom Alleviates Motor Deficits and Modulates the Transfer of Cortical Information through the Basal Ganglia in Rat Models of Parkinson's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maurice, Nicolas; Deltheil, Thierry; Melon, Christophe; Degos, Bertrand; Mourre, Christiane; Amalric, Marianne; Kerkerian-Le Goff, Lydia

    2015-01-01

    Recent evidence points to a neuroprotective action of bee venom on nigral dopamine neurons in animal models of Parkinson's disease (PD). Here we examined whether bee venom also displays a symptomatic action by acting on the pathological functioning of the basal ganglia in rat PD models. Bee venom effects were assessed by combining motor behavior analyses and in vivo electrophysiological recordings in the substantia nigra pars reticulata (SNr, basal ganglia output structure) in pharmacological (neuroleptic treatment) and lesional (unilateral intranigral 6-hydroxydopamine injection) PD models. In the hemi-parkinsonian 6-hydroxydopamine lesion model, subchronic bee venom treatment significantly alleviates contralateral forelimb akinesia and apomorphine-induced rotations. Moreover, a single injection of bee venom reverses haloperidol-induced catalepsy, a pharmacological model reminiscent of parkinsonian akinetic deficit. This effect is mimicked by apamin, a blocker of small conductance Ca2+-activated K+ (SK) channels, and blocked by CyPPA, a positive modulator of these channels, suggesting the involvement of SK channels in the bee venom antiparkinsonian action. In vivo electrophysiological recordings in the substantia nigra pars reticulata (basal ganglia output structure) showed no significant effect of BV on the mean neuronal discharge frequency or pathological bursting activity. In contrast, analyses of the neuronal responses evoked by motor cortex stimulation show that bee venom reverses the 6-OHDA- and neuroleptic-induced biases in the influence exerted by the direct inhibitory and indirect excitatory striatonigral circuits. These data provide the first evidence for a beneficial action of bee venom on the pathological functioning of the cortico-basal ganglia circuits underlying motor PD symptoms with potential relevance to the symptomatic treatment of this disease.

  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.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Du, Qiang; Hou, Xiaojuan; Wang, Lei; Zhang, Yingqi; Xi, Xinping; Wang, Hui; Zhou, Mei; Duan, Jinao; Wei, Minjie; Chen, Tianbao; Shaw, Chris

    2015-01-23

    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. 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.

  8. Determination of the X-ray structure of the snake venom protein omwaprin by total chemical synthesis and racemic protein crystallography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banigan, James R; Mandal, Kalyaneswar; Sawaya, Michael R; Thammavongsa, Vilasak; Hendrickx, Antoni P A; Schneewind, Olaf; Yeates, Todd O; Kent, Stephen B H

    2010-10-01

    The 50-residue snake venom protein L-omwaprin and its enantiomer D-omwaprin were prepared by total chemical synthesis. Radial diffusion assays were performed against Bacillus megaterium and Bacillus anthracis; both L- and D-omwaprin showed antibacterial activity against B. megaterium. The native protein enantiomer, made of L-amino acids, failed to crystallize readily. However, when a racemic mixture containing equal amounts of L- and D-omwaprin was used, diffraction quality crystals were obtained. The racemic protein sample crystallized in the centrosymmetric space group P2(1)/c and its structure was determined at atomic resolution (1.33 A) by a combination of Patterson and direct methods based on the strong scattering from the sulfur atoms in the eight cysteine residues per protein. Racemic crystallography once again proved to be a valuable method for obtaining crystals of recalcitrant proteins and for determining high-resolution X-ray structures by direct methods.

  9. X-ray absorption near edge structure study on Acutolysin-C, a zinc-metalloproteinase from Agkistrodon acutus venom: Insight into the acid-inactive mechanism

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhao Wei; Chu Wangsheng; Li Shujun; Liu Yiwei; Gao Bin; Niu Liwen; Teng Maikun; Benfatto, Maurizio; Hu Tiandou; Wu Ziyu

    2007-01-01

    Acutolysin-C, a snake-venom zinc metalloproteinase, displays a distinct pH-dependent proteolytic activity, which has been tentatively assigned to a structural change of the zinc-containing catalytic center. In this work we compare X-ray absorption near-edge structure (XANES) experimental spectra at the Zn K-edge and theoretical calculations of solutions at different pH values. The experimental data show clear differences confirmed by a best fit using the MXAN procedure. The results show that, when pH decreases from pH 8.0 to pH 3.0, the zinc-coordinating catalytic water molecule moves far from the Glu143 residue that is considered to play an essential role in the proteolytic process. Data suggests that this is the possible mechanism that deactivates the metalloproteinase

  10. Testing the "toxin hypothesis of allergy": Mast cells, IgE, and innate and acquired immune responses to venoms*

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

    Summary Work in mice indicates that innate functions of mast cells, particularly degradation of venom toxins by mast cell-derived proteases, can enhance resistance to certain arthropod or reptile venoms. Recent reports indicate that acquired Th2 immune responses associated with the production of IgE antibodies, induced by Russell’s viper venom or honeybee venom, or by a component of honeybee venom, bee venom phospholipase 2 (bvPLA2), can increase the resistance of mice to challenge with potentially lethal doses of either of the venoms or bvPLA2. These findings support the conclusion that, in contrast to the detrimental effects associated with allergic Th2 immune responses, mast cells and IgE-dependent immune responses to venoms can contribute to innate and adaptive resistance to venom-induced pathology and mortality. PMID:26210895

  11. Dual function of a bee venom serine protease: prophenoloxidase-activating factor in arthropods and fibrin(ogen)olytic enzyme in mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choo, Young Moo; Lee, Kwang Sik; Yoon, Hyung Joo; Kim, Bo Yeon; Sohn, Mi Ri; Roh, Jong Yul; Je, Yeon Ho; Kim, Nam Jung; Kim, Iksoo; Woo, Soo Dong; Sohn, Hung Dae; Jin, Byung Rae

    2010-05-03

    Bee venom contains a variety of peptides and enzymes, including serine proteases. While the presence of serine proteases in bee venom has been demonstrated, the role of these proteins in bee venom has not been elucidated. Furthermore, there is currently no information available regarding the melanization response or the fibrin(ogen)olytic activity of bee venom serine protease, and the molecular mechanism of its action remains unknown. Here we show that bee venom serine protease (Bi-VSP) is a multifunctional enzyme. In insects, Bi-VSP acts as an arthropod prophenoloxidase (proPO)-activating factor (PPAF), thereby triggering the phenoloxidase (PO) cascade. Bi-VSP injected through the stinger induces a lethal melanization response in target insects by modulating the innate immune response. In mammals, Bi-VSP acts similarly to snake venom serine protease, which exhibits fibrin(ogen)olytic activity. Bi-VSP activates prothrombin and directly degrades fibrinogen into fibrin degradation products, defining roles for Bi-VSP as a prothrombin activator, a thrombin-like protease, and a plasmin-like protease. These findings provide a novel view of the mechanism of bee venom in which the bee venom serine protease kills target insects via a melanization strategy and exhibits fibrin(ogen)olytic activity.

  12. Multi-functional composite structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulligan, Anthony C.; Halloran, John; Popovich, Dragan; Rigali, Mark J.; Sutaria, Manish P.; Vaidyanathan, K. Ranji; Fulcher, Michael L.; Knittel, Kenneth L.

    2004-10-19

    Fibrous monolith processing techniques to fabricate multifunctional structures capable of performing more than one discrete function such as structures capable of bearing structural loads and mechanical stresses in service and also capable of performing at least one additional non-structural function.

  13. Characterization of the gila monster (Heloderma suspectum suspectum) venom proteome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanggaard, Kristian W; Dyrlund, Thomas F; Thomsen, Line R; Nielsen, Tania A; Brøndum, Lars; Wang, Tobias; Thøgersen, Ida B; Enghild, Jan J

    2015-03-18

    . However, in the recent years the development of software tools for de novo sequencing and homology searches have improved significantly facilitating the first global analysis of the major protein components of helodermatid venom presented in this study. We have used a 2D-gel approach and determined the protein components in the 58 major spots resulting in the identification of 39 unique proteins. Of these, 19 have not previously been identified in helodermatid venom. The analysis provides results with impact on our understanding of the function and evolution of venom proteins, and serves as a basis for further unraveling of the pharmaceutical potential of the venom components. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Tityus serrulatus venom--A lethal cocktail.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pucca, Manuela Berto; Cerni, Felipe Augusto; Pinheiro Junior, Ernesto Lopes; Bordon, Karla de Castro Figueiredo; Amorim, Fernanda Gobbi; Cordeiro, Francielle Almeida; Longhim, Heloisa Tavoni; Cremonez, Caroline Marroni; Oliveira, Guilherme Honda; Arantes, Eliane Candiani

    2015-12-15

    Tityus serrulatus (Ts) is the main scorpion species of medical importance in Brazil. Ts venom is composed of several compounds such as mucus, inorganic salts, lipids, amines, nucleotides, enzymes, kallikrein inhibitor, natriuretic peptide, proteins with high molecular mass, peptides, free amino acids and neurotoxins. Neurotoxins are considered the most responsible for the envenoming syndrome due to their pharmacological action on ion channels such as voltage-gated sodium (Nav) and potassium (Kv) channels. The major goal of this review is to present important advances in Ts envenoming research, correlating both the crude Ts venom and isolated toxins with alterations observed in all human systems. The most remarkable event lies in the Ts induced massive releasing of neurotransmitters influencing, directly or indirectly, the entire body. Ts venom proved to extremely affect nervous and muscular systems, to modulate the immune system, to induce cardiac disorders, to cause pulmonary edema, to decrease urinary flow and to alter endocrine, exocrine, reproductive, integumentary, skeletal and digestive functions. Therefore, Ts venom possesses toxins affecting all anatomic systems, making it a lethal cocktail. However, its low lethality may be due to the low venom mass injected, to the different venom compositions, the body characteristics and health conditions of the victim and the local of Ts sting. Furthermore, we also described the different treatments employed during envenoming cases. In particular, throughout the review, an effort will be made to provide information from an extensive documented studies concerning Ts venom in vitro, in animals and in humans (a total of 151 references). Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Reumont, Bjoern Marcus; Campbell, Lahcen I.; Jenner, Ronald A.

    2014-01-01

    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. PMID:25533518

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  17. Nuclear correlations and structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hu Guoju; Irvine, J.M.

    1989-01-01

    It is argued that the search for a mass number dependence of the nuclear structure function per nucleon is profitably directed to the region of Bjorken scaling variable x > 1. We show that in the convolution model of the nuclear structure function the nuclear momentum distribution and energy spectrum generated by cluster expansion techniques, here realised in the correlated basis function method, invoking tensor correlations and short-range density-dependent repulsions adequately describes the structure function for 12 C in the region x > 1. The results of structure functions for a number of light-, medium- and heavy-mass nuclei are presented. (author)

  18. Wasp venom proteins: phospholipase A1 and B.

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, T P; Kochoumian, L; Joslyn, A

    1984-04-01

    Three major venom proteins from different species of wasps have been isolated and characterized. They are hyaluronidase, phospholipase, and antigen 5 of as yet unknown biochemical function. These three proteins are allergens in wasp venom-sensitive persons. The species of wasps studied, of the genus Polistes, were annularis, carolina, exclamans, fuscatus, and instabilis. Antigen 5 and phospholipase from wasp venoms were shown to be antigenically distinct from homologous proteins of yellowjacket venoms. The venom phospholipase from wasp, as well as that from yellowjacket (Vespula germanica), appears to have dual enzymatic specificities of the A1 and B types. That is, hydrolysis takes place at the 1-acyl residue of phosphatidylcholine and at the 1- or 2-acyl residue of lysophosphatidylcholine.

  19. Diversity of peptidic and proteinaceous toxins from social Hymenoptera venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dos Santos-Pinto, José Roberto Aparecido; Perez-Riverol, Amilcar; Lasa, Alexis Musacchio; Palma, Mario Sergio

    2018-06-15

    Among venomous animals, Hymenoptera have been suggested as a rich source of natural toxins. Due to their broad ecological diversity, venom from Hymenoptera insects (bees, wasps and ants) have evolved differentially thus widening the types and biological functions of their components. To date, insect toxinology analysis have scarcely uncovered the complex composition of bee, wasp and ant venoms which include low molecular weight compounds, highly abundant peptides and proteins, including several allergens. In Hymenoptera, these complex mixtures of toxins represent a potent arsenal of biological weapons that are used for self-defense, to repel intruders and to capture prey. Consequently, Hymenoptera venom components have a broad range of pharmacological targets and have been extensively studied, as promising sources of new drugs and biopesticides. In addition, the identification and molecular characterization of Hymenoptera venom allergens have allowed for the rational design of component-resolved diagnosis of allergy, finally improving the outcome of venom immunotherapy (VIT). Until recently, a limited number of Hymenoptera venoms had been unveiled due to the technical limitations of the approaches used to date. Nevertheless, the application of novel techniques with high dynamic range has significantly increased the number of identified peptidic and proteinaceous toxins. Considering this, the present review summarizes the current knowledge about the most representative Hymenoptera venom peptides and proteins which are under study for a better understanding of the insect-caused envenoming process and the development of new drugs and biopesticides. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Calculations of nucleon structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Signal, A.I.

    1990-01-01

    We present a method of calculating deep inelastic nucleon structure functions using bag model wavefunctions. Our method uses the Peierls - Yoccoz projection to form translation invariant bag states. We obtain the correct support for the structure functions and satisfy the positivity requirements for quark and anti-quark distribution functions. (orig.)

  1. Dramatic expansion of the black widow toxin arsenal uncovered by multi-tissue transcriptomics and venom proteomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haney, Robert A; Ayoub, Nadia A; Clarke, Thomas H; Hayashi, Cheryl Y; Garb, Jessica E

    2014-06-11

    Animal venoms attract enormous interest given their potential for pharmacological discovery and understanding the evolution of natural chemistries. Next-generation transcriptomics and proteomics provide unparalleled, but underexploited, capabilities for venom characterization. We combined multi-tissue RNA-Seq with mass spectrometry and bioinformatic analyses to determine venom gland specific transcripts and venom proteins from the Western black widow spider (Latrodectus hesperus) and investigated their evolution. We estimated expression of 97,217 L. hesperus transcripts in venom glands relative to silk and cephalothorax tissues. We identified 695 venom gland specific transcripts (VSTs), many of which BLAST and GO term analyses indicate may function as toxins or their delivery agents. ~38% of VSTs had BLAST hits, including latrotoxins, inhibitor cystine knot toxins, CRISPs, hyaluronidases, chitinase, and proteases, and 59% of VSTs had predicted protein domains. Latrotoxins are venom toxins that cause massive neurotransmitter release from vertebrate or invertebrate neurons. We discovered ≥ 20 divergent latrotoxin paralogs expressed in L. hesperus venom glands, significantly increasing this biomedically important family. Mass spectrometry of L. hesperus venom identified 49 proteins from VSTs, 24 of which BLAST to toxins. Phylogenetic analyses showed venom gland specific gene family expansions and shifts in tissue expression. Quantitative expression analyses comparing multiple tissues are necessary to identify venom gland specific transcripts. We present a black widow venom specific exome that uncovers a trove of diverse toxins and associated proteins, suggesting a dynamic evolutionary history. This justifies a reevaluation of the functional activities of black widow venom in light of its emerging complexity.

  2. Venom toxicity and composition in three Pseudomyrmex ant species having different nesting modes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Touchard, Axel; Labrière, Nicolas; Roux, Olivier; Petitclerc, Frédéric; Orivel, Jérôme; Escoubas, Pierre; Koh, Jennifer M S; Nicholson, Graham M; Dejean, Alain

    2014-09-01

    We aimed to determine whether the nesting habits of ants have influenced their venom toxicity and composition. We focused on the genus Pseudomyrmex (Pseudomyrmecinae) comprising terrestrial and arboreal species, and, among the latter, plant-ants that are obligate inhabitants of myrmecophytes (i.e., plants sheltering ants in hollow structures). Contrary to our hypothesis, the venom of the ground-dwelling species, Pseudomyrmex termitarius, was as efficacious in paralyzing prey as the venoms of the arboreal and the plant-ant species, Pseudomyrmex penetrator and Pseudomyrmex gracilis. The lethal potency of P. termitarius venom was equipotent with that of P. gracilis whereas the venom of P. penetrator was less potent. The MALDI-TOF MS analysis of each HPLC fraction of the venoms showed that P. termitarius venom is composed of 87 linear peptides, while both P. gracilis and P. penetrator venoms (23 and 26 peptides, respectively) possess peptides with disulfide bonds. Furthermore, P. penetrator venom contains three hetero- and homodimeric peptides consisting of two short peptidic chains linked together by two interchain disulfide bonds. The large number of peptides in P. termitarius venom is likely related to the large diversity of potential prey plus the antibacterial peptides required for nesting in the ground. Whereas predation involves only the prey and predator, P. penetrator venom has evolved in an environment where trees, defoliating insects, browsing mammals and ants live in equilibrium, likely explaining the diversity of the peptide structures. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Allergies to Insect Venom

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... insects (as might be the case when a nest is disturbed, or when Africanized honeybees are involved); ... test with the five commercially available venoms; honey bee, paper wasp, yellow jacket, yellow hornet and white- ...

  4. Hymenoptera venom review focusing on Apis mellifera

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. R. de Lima

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available Hymenoptera venoms are complex mixtures containing simple organic molecules, proteins, peptides, and other bioactive elements. Several of these components have been isolated and characterized, and their primary structures determined by biochemical techniques. These compounds are responsible for many toxic or allergic reactions in different organisms, such as local pain, inflammation, itching, irritation, and moderate or severe allergic reactions. The most extensively characterized Hymenoptera venoms are bee venoms, mainly from the Apis genus and also from social wasps and ant species. However, there is little information about other Hymenoptera groups. The Apis venom presents high molecular weight molecules - enzymes with a molecular weight higher than 10.0 kDa - and peptides. The best studied enzymes are phospholipase A2, responsible for cleaving the membrane phospholipids, hyaluronidase, which degrades the matrix component hyaluronic acid into non-viscous segments and acid phosphatase acting on organic phosphates. The main peptide compounds of bee venom are lytic peptide melittin, apamin (neurotoxic, and mastocyte degranulating peptide (MCD.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bennacef-Heffar, N.; Laraba-Djebari, F.

    2003-01-01

    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 60 Co source, and the venom's toxic, enzymatic, and structural properties were analyzed. Intraperitoneal injection of the irradiated venoms (100-500 μg/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 2 activities. Caseinolytic, amidolytic, esterasic, and coagulative activities were reduced for the irradiated venoms; only phospholipase A 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 irradiation of V. lebetina

  6. Pharmacokinetics of Snake Venom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suchaya Sanhajariya

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Understanding snake venom pharmacokinetics is essential for developing risk assessment strategies and determining the optimal dose and timing of antivenom required to bind all venom in snakebite patients. This review aims to explore the current knowledge of snake venom pharmacokinetics in animals and humans. Literature searches were conducted using EMBASE (1974–present and Medline (1946–present. For animals, 12 out of 520 initially identified studies met the inclusion criteria. In general, the disposition of snake venom was described by a two-compartment model consisting of a rapid distribution phase and a slow elimination phase, with half-lives of 5 to 48 min and 0.8 to 28 h, respectively, following rapid intravenous injection of the venoms or toxins. When the venoms or toxins were administered intramuscularly or subcutaneously, an initial absorption phase and slow elimination phase were observed. The bioavailability of venoms or toxins ranged from 4 to 81.5% following intramuscular administration and 60% following subcutaneous administration. The volume of distribution and the clearance varied between snake species. For humans, 24 out of 666 initially identified publications contained sufficient information and timed venom concentrations in the absence of antivenom therapy for data extraction. The data were extracted and modelled in NONMEM. A one-compartment model provided the best fit, with an elimination half-life of 9.71 ± 1.29 h. It is intended that the quantitative information provided in this review will provide a useful basis for future studies that address the pharmacokinetics of snakebite in humans.

  7. Spin dependent photon structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Manohar, A.V.; Massachusetts Inst. of Tech., Cambridge

    1989-01-01

    Spin dependent structure functions of the photon are studied using the operator product expansion. There are new twist-two photon and gluon operators which contribute. The structure functions g 1 and F 3 are calculable in QCD, but differ from their free quark values. The corrections to F 3 are suppressed by 1/log Q 2 . The calculation is an extension of the analysis of Witten for the spin averaged structure functions F 1 and F 2 . (orig.)

  8. 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.

  9. Study of quark structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dao, F.T.; Flaminio, E.; Lai, K.; Metcalf, M.; Wang, L.

    1977-01-01

    The quark structure functions of the proton are determined through a combined analysis of the reactions pN → ll-barX and eN → eX. The valence-quark structure function of the pion is also given by analyzing the πN → μμ-barX data measured by the Branson et al

  10. Anaphylaxis to Insect Venom Allergens

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ollert, Markus; Blank, Simon

    2015-01-01

    available for diagnostic measurement of specific IgE in venom-allergic patients. These recombinant venom allergens offer several promising possibilities for an improved diagnostic algorithm. Reviewed here are the current status, recent developments, and future perspectives of molecular diagnostics of venom...

  11. A new structurally atypical bradykinin-potentiating peptide isolated from Crotalus durissus cascavella venom (South American rattlesnake).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopes, Denise M; Junior, Norberto E G; Costa, Paula P C; Martins, Patrícia L; Santos, Cláudia F; Carvalho, Ellaine D F; Carvalho, Maria D F; Pimenta, Daniel C; Cardi, Bruno A; Fonteles, Manassés C; Nascimento, Nilberto R F; Carvalho, Krishnamurti M

    2014-11-01

    Venom glands of some snakes synthesize bradykinin-potentiating peptides (BPP's) which increase bradykinin-induced hypotensive effect and decrease angiotensin I vasopressor effect by angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibition. The present study shows a new BPP (BPP-Cdc) isolated from Crotalus durissus cascavella venom: Pro-Asn-Leu-Pro-Asn-Tyr-Leu-Gly-Ile-Pro-Pro. Although BPP-Cdc presents the classical sequence IPP in the C-terminus, it has a completely atypical N-terminal sequence, which shows very low homology with all other BPPs isolated to date. The pharmacological effects of BPP-Cdc were compared to BBP9a from Bothrops jararaca and captopril. BPP-Cdc (1 μM) significantly increased BK-induced contractions (BK; 1 μM) on the guinea pig ileum by 267.8% and decreased angiotensin I-induced contractions (AngI; 10 nM) by 62.4% and these effects were not significantly different from those of BPP9a (1 μM) or captopril (200 nM). Experiments with 4-week hypertensive 2K-1C rats show that the vasopressor effect of AngI (10 ng) was decreased by 50 μg BPP-Cdc (69.7%), and this result was similar to that obtained with 50 μg BPP9a (69.8%). However, the action duration of BPP-Cdc (60 min) was 2 times greater than that of BPP-9a (30 min). On the other hand, the hypotensive effect of BK (250 ng) was significantly increased by 176.6% after BPP-Cdc (50 μg) administration, value 2.5 times greater than that obtained with BPP9a administered at the same doses (71.4%). In addition, the duration of the action of BPP-Cdc (120 min) was also at least 4 times greater than that of BPP-9a (30 min). Taken together, these results suggest that BPP-Cdc presents more selective action on arterial blood system than BPP9a. Besides the inhibition of ACE, it may present other mechanisms of action yet to be elucidated. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Venom Resistance as a Model for Understanding the Molecular Basis of Complex Coevolutionary Adaptations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holding, Matthew L; Drabeck, Danielle H; Jansa, Sharon A; Gibbs, H Lisle

    2016-11-01

    SynopsisVenom and venom resistance are molecular phenotypes widely considered to have diversified through coevolution between predators and prey. However, while evolutionary and functional studies on venom have been extensive, little is known about the molecular basis, variation, and complexity of venom resistance. We review known mechanisms of venom resistance and relate these mechanisms to their predicted impact on coevolutionary dynamics with venomous enemies. We then describe two conceptual approaches which can be used to examine venom/resistance systems. At the intraspecific level, tests of local adaptation in venom and resistance phenotypes can identify the functional mechanisms governing the outcomes of coevolution. At deeper evolutionary timescales, the combination of phylogenetically informed analyses of protein evolution coupled with studies of protein function promise to elucidate the mode and tempo of evolutionary change on potentially coevolving genes. We highlight case studies that use each approach to extend our knowledge of these systems as well as address larger questions about coevolutionary dynamics. We argue that resistance and venom are phenotypic traits which hold exceptional promise for investigating the mechanisms, dynamics, and outcomes of coevolution at the molecular level. Furthermore, extending the understanding of single gene-for-gene interactions to the whole resistance and venom phenotypes may provide a model system for examining the molecular and evolutionary dynamics of complex multi-gene interactions. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. All rights reserved. For permissions please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  13. Sex Differences in Defensive Behavior and Venom of The Striped Bark Scorpion Centruroides vittatus (Scorpiones: Buthidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, D W; Jones, A D; Goldston, J S; Rowe, M P; Rowe, A H

    2016-11-01

    Studies of venom variability have advanced from describing the mechanisms of action and relative potency of medically important toxins to understanding the ecological and evolutionary causes of the variability itself. While most studies have focused on differences in venoms among taxa, populations, or age-classes, there may be intersexual effects as well. Striped bark scorpions (Centruroides vittatus) provide a good model for examining sex differences in venom composition and efficacy, as this species exhibits dramatic sexual dimorphism in both size and defensive behavior; when threatened by an enemy, larger, slower females stand and fight while smaller, fleeter males prefer to run. We here add evidence suggesting that male and female C. vittatus indeed have different defensive propensities; when threatened via an electrical stimulus, females were more likely to sting than were males. We reasoned that intersexual differences in defensive phenotypes would select for venoms with different functions in the two sexes; female venoms should be effective at predator deterrence, whereas male venoms, less utilized defensively, might be better suited to capturing prey or courting females. This rationale led to our predictions that females would inject more venom and/or possess more painful venom than males. We were wrong. While females do inject more venom than males in a defensive sting, females are also larger; when adjusted for body size, male and female C. vittatus commit equal masses of venom in a sting to a potential enemy. Additionally, house mice (Mus musculus) find an injection of male venom more irritating than an equal amount of female venom, likely because male venom contains more of the toxins that induce pain. Taken together, our results suggest that identifying the ultimate causes of venom variability will, as we move beyond adaptive storytelling, be hard-won. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Integrative and

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    He Wang

    2016-06-01

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

  15. The photon structure function

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Berger, C.

    1984-01-01

    In principle we have to distinguish between three cases: In no-tag experiments, none of the outgoing leptons e + e - is detected. The photon flux is completely dominated by transversely polarized photons, which are practically on-mass-shell. In single-tag experiments, either the outgoing e - or e + is detected in a forward spectrometer. Sometimes the tagging information is only used for separating a multihadronic twophoton final state from e + e - annihilation states. On the other hand, the information from the forward detectors can be used to investigate the Q 2 behaviour of the cross-section. A combination of tagging on one side with antitagging on the other allows an easy interpretation of the results in terms of electron scattering off a real photon target. In double-tag experiments, both outgoing leptons are measured. In principle, the full kinematical structure of the process can be studied, but we are still a long way from starting to tackle this difficult task

  16. Mind, brain, structure and function

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Aleksander, I

    1982-01-01

    The author discusses the type of problem one encounters when trying to formalise the nature of a state structure associated with the brain and the origins of this state structure. The paper first defines in broad terms the nature of the structure function problem, and then goes on to separate out those parts of a structure that lead to the variational and adaptive nature of the state structure. It is argued that the relationship between the structure that leads to adaptation and its embedding in an external environment are crucial areas for further study. 4 references.

  17. Diquarks and nucleon structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Linkevich, A.D.; Savrin, V.I.; Skachkov, N.B.

    1982-01-01

    Formulae for structure functions of the deep-inelastic lepton-nucleon scattering are obtained through relativistic wave functions of systems composed of particles with spins 0, 1/2 and 1, 1/2. These wave functions are solutions of covariant two-particle single-time equations describing the nucleon as a system formed out of a quark and a diquark. Diquark is considered as a boson with the spin 0 and 1. The expressions for the nucleon structure functions are obtained by using the matrix elements of the current operator corresponding to the elastic scattering of the photon on a quark and on a diquark [ru

  18. Proton and neutron structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rock, S.

    1991-01-01

    New result on charged lepton scattering from hydrogen and deuterium targets by the BCDMS, NMC and SLAC collaborations have greatly increased our knowledge of the structure functions of protons and neutrons. The disagreement between the high energy muon scattering cross sections obtained by the EMC and BCDMS collaborations have been almost completely resolved by comparison with a global analysis of old and new SLAC data and a reanalysis of EMC data. We now have a consistent set of structure functions which covers an approximate range 1 ≤ Q 2 ≤ 200 (GeV/c) 2 and 0.07 ≤ x ≤ 0.7. The ratio of neutron to proton structure functions decreases with increasing Q 2 for values of x ≥ 0.1. The difference between proton and neutron structure functions approaches zero as x decreases, consistent with the expected √x behavior. (orig.)

  19. Addiction to Snake Venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das, Saibal; Barnwal, Preeti; Maiti, Tanay; Ramasamy, Anand; Mondal, Somnath; Babu, Dinesh

    2017-07-03

    The nature of addiction depends on various factors. The tendency to have already used several addictive substances and to seek high sensation experiences as a result of specific personality traits may lead to extreme and peculiar forms of addictions. Even belonging to specific social and cultural background may lead to such forms of addiction such as intentional snake bite and willful envenomation. In this article, we have discussed the peculiarities and practical insight of such addiction to snake venom. The possible molecular mechanism behind such venom-mediated reinforcement has also been highlighted. Finally, we have stressed upon the treatment and de-addiction measures.

  20. 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.

  1. Functional Insights from Structural Genomics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Forouhar,F.; Kuzin, A.; Seetharaman, J.; Lee, I.; Zhou, W.; Abashidze, M.; Chen, Y.; Montelione, G.; Tong, L.; et al

    2007-01-01

    Structural genomics efforts have produced structural information, either directly or by modeling, for thousands of proteins over the past few years. While many of these proteins have known functions, a large percentage of them have not been characterized at the functional level. The structural information has provided valuable functional insights on some of these proteins, through careful structural analyses, serendipity, and structure-guided functional screening. Some of the success stories based on structures solved at the Northeast Structural Genomics Consortium (NESG) are reported here. These include a novel methyl salicylate esterase with important role in plant innate immunity, a novel RNA methyltransferase (H. influenzae yggJ (HI0303)), a novel spermidine/spermine N-acetyltransferase (B. subtilis PaiA), a novel methyltransferase or AdoMet binding protein (A. fulgidus AF{_}0241), an ATP:cob(I)alamin adenosyltransferase (B. subtilis YvqK), a novel carboxysome pore (E. coli EutN), a proline racemase homolog with a disrupted active site (B. melitensis BME11586), an FMN-dependent enzyme (S. pneumoniae SP{_}1951), and a 12-stranded {beta}-barrel with a novel fold (V. parahaemolyticus VPA1032).

  2. Hyaluronidase and hyaluronan in insect venom allergy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Te Piao; Wittkowski, Knut M

    2011-01-01

    Insect venoms contain an allergen hyaluronidase that catalyzes the hydrolysis of hyaluronan (HA), a polymer of disaccharide GlcUA-GlcNAc in skin. HAs depending on their size have variable function in inflammation and immunity. This paper reports on whether hyaluronidase, HA polymers and oligomers can promote antibody response in mice. HA oligomers (8- to 50-mer; 3-20 kDa) were obtained by bee venom hyaluronidase digestion of HA polymers (750- to 5,000-mer; 300-2,000 kDa). Antibody responses in mice were compared following 3 biweekly subcutaneous injection of ovalbumin (OVA) with or without test adjuvant. OVA-specific IgG1 levels were approximately 2 times higher in BALB/c and C3H/HeJ mice receiving OVA and HA oligomer or polymer than those treated with OVA alone, and no increase in total IgE level was observed. In C57Bl/6 mice, observed increases in IgG1 and IgE were 3.5- and 1.7-fold, respectively, for the oligomer and 16- and 5-fold (p Insect venoms also have cytolytic peptides and phospholipases with inflammatory roles. These activities found in mice may contribute to venom allergenicity in susceptible people. Copyright © 2011 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  3. Functional Generalized Structured Component Analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suk, Hye Won; Hwang, Heungsun

    2016-12-01

    An extension of Generalized Structured Component Analysis (GSCA), called Functional GSCA, is proposed to analyze functional data that are considered to arise from an underlying smooth curve varying over time or other continua. GSCA has been geared for the analysis of multivariate data. Accordingly, it cannot deal with functional data that often involve different measurement occasions across participants and a large number of measurement occasions that exceed the number of participants. Functional GSCA addresses these issues by integrating GSCA with spline basis function expansions that represent infinite-dimensional curves onto a finite-dimensional space. For parameter estimation, functional GSCA minimizes a penalized least squares criterion by using an alternating penalized least squares estimation algorithm. The usefulness of functional GSCA is illustrated with gait data.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vera Oldrati

    Full Text Available 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

  5. Are ticks venomous animals?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Cabezas-Cruz, A.; Valdés, James J.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 11, JUL 2014 (2014), s. 47 ISSN 1742-9994 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) EE2.3.30.0032 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : ticks * venom * secreted proteins * toxicoses * pathogens * convergence Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 3.051, year: 2014

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-12-17

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  8. Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors of Bothrops jararaca snake venom affect the structure of mice seminiferous epithelium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alberto-Silva, Carlos; Gilio, Joyce M; Portaro, Fernanda C V; Querobino, Samyr M; Camargo, Antonio C M

    2015-01-01

    Considering the similarity between the testis-specific isoform of angiotensin-converting enzyme and the C-terminal catalytic domain of somatic ACE as well as the structural and functional variability of its natural inhibitors, known as bradykinin-potentiating peptides (BPPs), the effects of different synthetic peptides, BPP-10c (structure and cannot be extrapolated to other BPPs.

  9. Structure functions and parton distributions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Martin, A.D.; Stirling, W.J.; Roberts, R.G.

    1995-01-01

    The MRS parton distribution analysis is described. The latest sets are shown to give an excellent description of a wide range of deep-inelastic and other hard scattering data. Two important theoretical issues-the behavior of the distributions at small x and the flavor structure of the quark sea-are discussed in detail. A comparison with the new structure function data from HERA is made, and the outlook for the future is discussed

  10. Collagens - structure, function and biosynthesis.

    OpenAIRE

    Gelse, K; Poschl, E; Aigner, T

    2003-01-01

    The extracellular matrix represents a complex alloy of variable members of diverse protein families defining structural integrity and various physiological functions. The most abundant family is the collagens with more than 20 different collagen types identified so far. Collagens are centrally involved in the formation of fibrillar and microfibrillar networks of the extracellular matrix, basement membranes as well as other structures of the extracellular matrix. This review focuses on the dis...

  11. The nonenzymatic subunit of pseutarin C, a prothrombin activator from eastern brown snake (Pseudonaja textilis) venom, shows structural similarity to mammalian coagulation factor V.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rao, Veena S; Swarup, Sanjay; Kini, R Manjunatha

    2003-08-15

    Pseutarin C is a group C prothrombin activator from the venom of the eastern brown snake Pseudonaja textilis. It is a multi-subunit protein complex consisting of catalytic and nonenzymatic subunits similar to coagulation factor Xa and factor Va, respectively. Here we describe the complete sequence of the nonenzymatic subunit. Based on the partial amino acid sequence of the nonenzymatic subunit, degenerate primers were designed. Using a "walking" strategy based on sequentially designed primers, we determined the complete cDNA sequence of the nonenzymatic subunit. The cDNA encodes a protein of 1461 amino acid residues, which includes a 30-residue signal peptide, a mature protein of 1430 amino acid residues, and a stop codon. cDNA blot analysis showed a single transcript of approximately 4.6 kb. The deduced amino acid sequence shows approximately 50% identity to mammalian factor V and by homology has a similar domain structure consisting of domains A1-A2-B-A3-C1-C2. Interestingly, the B domain of pseutarin C is shorter than that of mammalian factor V (FV). Although most of the proteolytic activation sites are conserved, 2 of 3 proteolytic sites cleaved by activated protein C are mutated, and thus activated protein C is not able to inactivate this procoagulant toxin. The predicted posttranslational modifications, including disulfide bonds, N-glycosylation, phosphorylation, and sulfation, in pseutarin C are significantly different compared with bovine factor V. Thus, our data demonstrate that the nonenzymatic subunit of group C prothrombin activators is structurally similar to mammalian FV.

  12. 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...

  13. Structure functions and parton distributions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Olness, F.; Tung, Wu-Ki

    1991-04-01

    Activities of the structure functions and parton distributions group is summarized. The impact of scheme-dependence of parton distributions (especially sea-quarks and gluons) on the quantitative formulation of the QCD parton model is highlighted. Recent progress on the global analysis of parton distributions is summarized. Issues on the proper use of the next-to-leading parton distributions are stressed

  14. Rise in proton structure function

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fazal-e-Aleem; Rashid, H.; Ali, S.

    1996-08-01

    By the choice of a new scale factor we obtain a good qualitative fit to the HERA data for the proton structure function in the small x region which exhibits double asymptotic scaling. Any scaling violations in the future measurements when made in smaller bins will be of immense value. (author). 19 refs, 6 figs

  15. Structure functions at low x

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Roeck, A.De.

    2000-01-01

    Deep recent data and phenomenology on low-x structure functions are discussed inelastic scattering. We will be interested primordially in the regions Q 2 → 0 i.e. the transition from γp to, and x → 10 -4 - 10 -6 i.e. the region of high parton densities

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daryl C. Yang

    2016-10-01

    invertebrate venomous species including cone snails, scorpions, spiders, and anemones. Enhanced activation or delayed inactivation of sodium channels by toxins is associated with the extremely rapid onset of tetanic/excitatory paralysis in envenomed prey animals. A strong selection pressure exists for the evolution of such toxins where there is a high chance of prey escape. However, despite their prevalence in other venomous species, toxins causing delay of sodium channel inhibition have never previously been described in vertebrate venoms. Here we show that NaV modulators, convergent with those of invertebrates, have evolved in the venom of the long-glanded coral snake. Calliotoxin represents a functionally novel class of 3FTx and a structurally novel class of NaV toxins that will provide significant insights into the pharmacology and physiology of NaV. The toxin represents a remarkable case of functional convergence between invertebrate and vertebrate venom systems in response to similar selection pressures. These results underscore the dynamic evolution of the Toxicofera reptile system and reinforces the value of using evolution as a roadmap for biodiscovery.

  17. The notochord: structure and functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corallo, Diana; Trapani, Valeria; Bonaldo, Paolo

    2015-08-01

    The notochord is an embryonic midline structure common to all members of the phylum Chordata, providing both mechanical and signaling cues to the developing embryo. In vertebrates, the notochord arises from the dorsal organizer and it is critical for proper vertebrate development. This evolutionary conserved structure located at the developing midline defines the primitive axis of embryos and represents the structural element essential for locomotion. Besides its primary structural function, the notochord is also a source of developmental signals that patterns surrounding tissues. Among the signals secreted by the notochord, Hedgehog proteins play key roles during embryogenesis. The Hedgehog signaling pathway is a central regulator of embryonic development, controlling the patterning and proliferation of a wide variety of organs. In this review, we summarize the current knowledge on notochord structure and functions, with a particular emphasis on the key developmental events that take place in vertebrates. Moreover, we discuss some genetic studies highlighting the phenotypic consequences of impaired notochord development, which enabled to understand the molecular basis of different human congenital defects and diseases.

  18. Venom-derived peptides inhibiting Kir channels: Past, present, and future.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doupnik, Craig A

    2017-12-01

    Inwardly rectifying K + (Kir) channels play a significant role in vertebrate and invertebrate biology by regulating the movement of K + ions involved in membrane transport and excitability. Yet unlike other ion channels including their ancestral K + -selective homologs, there are very few venom toxins known to target and inhibit Kir channels with the potency and selectivity found for the Ca 2+ -activated and voltage-gated K + channel families. It is unclear whether this is simply due to a lack of discovery, or instead a consequence of the evolutionary processes that drive the development of venom components towards their targets based on a collective efficacy to 1) elicit pain for defensive purposes, 2) promote paralysis for prey capture, or 3) facilitate delivery of venom components into the circulation. The past two decades of venom screening has yielded three venom peptides with inhibitory activity towards mammalian Kir channels, including the discovery of tertiapin, a high-affinity pore blocker from the venom of the European honey bee Apis mellifera. Venomics and structure-based computational approaches represent exciting new frontiers for venom peptide development, where re-engineering peptide 'scaffolds' such as tertiapin may aid in the quest to expand the palette of potent and selective Kir channel blockers for future research and potentially new therapeutics. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'Venom-derived Peptides as Pharmacological Tools.' Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Structure and function of wood

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alex Wiedenhoeft

    2010-01-01

    Wood is a complex biological structure, a composite of many chemistries and cell types acting together to serve the needs of a living plant. Attempting to understand wood in the context of wood technology, we have often overlooked the key and basic fact that wood evolved over the course of millions of years to serve three main functions in plants― conduction of water...

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2012-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kartik Sunagar

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

  4. 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.

  5. Computational Studies of Snake Venom Toxins

    OpenAIRE

    Paola G. Ojeda; David Ramírez; Jans Alzate-Morales; Julio Caballero; Quentin Kaas; Wendy González

    2017-01-01

    Most snake venom toxins are proteins, and participate to envenomation through a diverse array of bioactivities, such as bleeding, inflammation, and pain, cytotoxic, cardiotoxic or neurotoxic effects. The venom of a single snake species contains hundreds of toxins, and the venoms of the 725 species of venomous snakes represent a large pool of potentially bioactive proteins. Despite considerable discovery efforts, most of the snake venom toxins are still uncharacterized. Modern bioinformatics t...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Menossi Marcelo

    2010-10-01

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

  7. CYCLOPHILIN A: STRUCTURE AND FUNCTIONS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. A. Kalinina

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Cyclophilins belong to a large family of ancient conservative proteins with peptidyl-prolyl-cis-trans isomerase activity. The main member of this family – cyclophilin A – was discovered as an intracellular ligand for cyclosporine A. Further investigations revealed a wide range of functions of cyclophilin A. Cyclophilin A is involved in T-cell signaling, it takes part in folding, assembly and intracellular transport of proteins, as well as acts as an antioxidant. Different cell types secrete cyclophilin A under infection or oxidative stress. Cyclophilin A is one of the main factors involved in inflammation and pathogenesis of autoimmune, cardiovascular and other diseases. This protein is thought to take part in tumor progression. In this review we describe the structure of cyclophilin A and its main known functions in health and disease.

  8. Functional characterization of recombinant snake venom rhodocytin: rhodocytin mutant blocks CLEC-2/podoplanin-dependent platelet aggregation and lung metastasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sasaki, T; Shirai, T; Tsukiji, N; Otake, S; Tamura, S; Ichikawa, J; Osada, M; Satoh, K; Ozaki, Y; Suzuki-Inoue, K

    2018-02-28

    Essentials We generated recombinant rhodocytin that could aggregate platelets via CLEC-2. Recombinant wild-type rhodocytin formed heterooctamer with four α- and β-subunits. Asp 4 in α-subunit of rhodocytin was required for binding to CLEC-2. Inhibitory mutant of rhodocytin blocked podoplanin-dependent hematogenous metastasis. Background Rhodocytin, a disulfide-linked heterodimeric C-type lectin from Calloselasma rhodostoma consisting of α-subunits and β-subunits, induces platelet aggregation through C-type lectin-like receptor 2 (CLEC-2). CLEC-2 is a physiological binding partner of podoplanin (PDPN), which is expressed on some tumor cell types, and is involved in tumor cell-induced platelet aggregation and tumor metastasis. Thus, modified rhodocytin may be a possible source of anti-CLEC-2 drugs for both antiplatelet and antimetastasis therapy. However, its molecular function has not been well characterized, because of the lack of recombinant rhodocytin that induces platelet aggregation. Objective To produce recombinant rhodocytin, in order to verify its function with mutagenesis, and to develop an anti-CLEC-2 drug based on the findings. Methods We used Chinese hamster ovary cells to express recombinant rhodocytin (wild-type [WT] and mutant), which was analyzed for induction/inhibition of platelet aggregation with light transmission aggregometry, the formation of multimers with blue native PAGE, and binding to CLEC-2 with flow cytometry. Finally, we investigated whether mutant rhodocytin could suppress PDPN-induced metastasis in an experimental lung metastasis mouse model. Results Functional WT] rhodocytin (αWTβWT) was obtained by coexpression of both subunits. Asp4 in α-subunits of rhodocytin was required for CLEC-2 binding. αWTβWT formed a heterooctamer similarly to native rhodocytin. Moreover, an inhibitory mutant of rhodocytin (αWTβK53A/R56A), forming a heterotetramer, bound to CLEC-2 without inducing platelet aggregation, and blocked CLEC-2-PDPN

  9. Supramolecular Structure and Function 9

    CERN Document Server

    Pifat-Mrzljak, Greta

    2007-01-01

    The book is based on International Summer Schools on Biophysics held in Croatia which, contrary to other workshops centered mainly on one topic or technique, has very broad scope providing advanced training in areas related to biophysics. This volume is presenting papers in the field of biophysics for studying biological phenomena by using physical methods (NMR, EPR, FTIR, Mass Spectrometry, etc.) and/or concepts (predictions of protein-protein interactions, virtual ligand screening etc.). The interrelationship of supramolecular structures and there functions is enlightened by applications of principals of these physical methods in the biophysical and molecular biology context.

  10. Functional nanometer-scale structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Tsz On Mario

    Nanometer-scale structures have properties that are fundamentally different from their bulk counterparts. Much research effort has been devoted in the past decades to explore new fabrication techniques, model the physical properties of these structures, and construct functional devices. The ability to manipulate and control the structure of matter at the nanoscale has made many new classes of materials available for the study of fundamental physical processes and potential applications. The interplay between fabrication techniques and physical understanding of the nanostructures and processes has revolutionized the physical and material sciences, providing far superior properties in materials for novel applications that benefit society. This thesis consists of two major aspects of my graduate research in nano-scale materials. In the first part (Chapters 3--6), a comprehensive study on the nanostructures based on electrospinning and thermal treatment is presented. Electrospinning is a well-established method for producing high-aspect-ratio fibrous structures, with fiber diameter ranging from 1 nm--1 microm. A polymeric solution is typically used as a precursor in electrospinning. In our study, the functionality of the nanostructure relies on both the nanostructure and material constituents. Metallic ions containing precursors were added to the polymeric precursor following a sol-gel process to prepare the solution suitable for electrospinning. A typical electrospinning process produces as-spun fibers containing both polymer and metallic salt precursors. Subsequent thermal treatments of the as-spun fibers were carried out in various conditions to produce desired structures. In most cases, polymer in the solution and the as-spun fibers acted as a backbone for the structure formation during the subsequent heat treatment, and were thermally removed in the final stage. Polymers were also designed to react with the metallic ion precursors during heat treatment in some

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stéphanie Malaquin

    2016-07-01

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

  12. Bioactive Components in Fish Venoms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziegman, Rebekah; Alewood, Paul

    2015-01-01

    Animal venoms are widely recognized excellent resources for the discovery of novel drug leads and physiological tools. Most are comprised of a large number of components, of which the enzymes, small peptides, and proteins are studied for their important bioactivities. However, in spite of there being over 2000 venomous fish species, piscine venoms have been relatively underrepresented in the literature thus far. Most studies have explored whole or partially fractioned venom, revealing broad pharmacology, which includes cardiovascular, neuromuscular, cytotoxic, inflammatory, and nociceptive activities. Several large proteinaceous toxins, such as stonustoxin, verrucotoxin, and Sp-CTx, have been isolated from scorpaenoid fish. These form pores in cell membranes, resulting in cell death and creating a cascade of reactions that result in many, but not all, of the physiological symptoms observed from envenomation. Additionally, Natterins, a novel family of toxins possessing kininogenase activity have been found in toadfish venom. A variety of smaller protein toxins, as well as a small number of peptides, enzymes, and non-proteinaceous molecules have also been isolated from a range of fish venoms, but most remain poorly characterized. Many other bioactive fish venom components remain to be discovered and investigated. These represent an untapped treasure of potentially useful molecules. PMID:25941767

  13. Crude venom from nematocysts of Pelagia noctiluca (Cnidaria: Scyphozoa) elicits a sodium conductance in the plasma membrane of mammalian cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morabito, Rossana; Costa, Roberta; Rizzo, Valentina; Remigante, Alessia; Nofziger, Charity; La Spada, Giuseppa; Marino, Angela; Paulmichl, Markus; Dossena, Silvia

    2017-01-01

    Cnidarians may negatively impact human activities and public health but concomitantly their venom represents a rich source of bioactive substances. Pelagia noctiluca is the most venomous and abundant jellyfish of the Mediterranean Sea and possesses a venom with hemolytic and cytolytic activity for which the mechanism is largely unknown. Here we show that exposure of mammalian cells to crude venom from the nematocysts of P. noctiluca profoundly alters the ion conductance of the plasma membrane, therefore affecting homeostatic functions such as the regulation and maintenance of cellular volume. Venom-treated cells exhibited a large, inwardly rectifying current mainly due to permeation of Na+ and Cl-, sensitive to amiloride and completely abrogated following harsh thermal treatment of crude venom extract. Curiously, the plasma membrane conductance of Ca2+ and K+ was not affected. Current-inducing activity was also observed following delivery of venom to the cytosolic side of the plasma membrane, consistent with a pore-forming mechanism. Venom-induced NaCl influx followed by water and consequent cell swelling most likely underlie the hemolytic and cytolytic activity of P. noctiluca venom. The present study underscores unique properties of P. noctiluca venom and provides essential information for a possible use of its active compounds and treatment of envenomation.

  14. Nanofibrous Snake Venom Hemostat

    OpenAIRE

    Kumar, Vivek A.; Wickremasinghe, Navindee C.; Shi, Siyu; Hartgerink, Jeffrey D.

    2015-01-01

    Controlling perioperative bleeding is of critical importance to minimize hemorrhaging and fatality. Patients on anticoagulant therapy such as heparin have diminished clotting potential and are at risk for hemorrhaging. Here we describe a self-assembling nanofibrous peptide hydrogel (termed SLac) that on its own can act as a physical barrier to blood loss. SLac was loaded with snake-venom derived Batroxobin (50 μg/mL) yielding a drug-loaded hydrogel (SB50). SB50 was potentiated to enhance clot...

  15. cDNA and deduced primary structure of basic phospholipase A2 with neurotoxic activity from the venom secretion of the Crotalus durissus collilineatus rattlesnake

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F.H.R. Fagundes

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available To illustrate the construction of precursor complementary DNAs, we isolated mRNAs from whole venom samples. After reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR, we amplified the cDNA coding for a neurotoxic protein, phospholipase A2 D49 (PLA2 D49, from the venom of Crotalus durissus collilineatus (Cdc PLA2. The cDNA encoding Cdc PLA2 from whole venom was sequenced. The deduced amino acid sequence of this cDNA has high overall sequence identity with the group II PLA2 protein family. Cdc PLA2 has 14 cysteine residues capable of forming seven disulfide bonds that characterize this group of PLA2 enzymes. Cdc PLA2 was isolated using conventional Sephadex G75 column chromatography and reverse-phase high performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC. The molecular mass was estimated using matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time-of-flight (MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. We tested the neuromuscular blocking activities on chick biventer cervicis neuromuscular tissue. Phylogenetic analysis of Cdc PLA2 showed the existence of two lines of N6-PLA2, denominated F24 and S24. Apparently, the sequences of the New World’s N6-F24-PLA2 are similar to those of the agkistrodotoxin from the Asian genus Gloydius. The sequences of N6-S24-PLA2 are similar to the sequence of trimucrotoxin from the genus Protobothrops, found in the Old World.

  16. Polymerized soluble venom--human serum albumin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Patterson, R.; Suszko, I.M.; Grammer, L.C.

    1985-03-01

    Extensive previous studies have demonstrated that attempts to produce polymers of Hymenoptera venoms for human immunotherapy resulted in insoluble precipitates that could be injected with safety but with very limited immunogenicity in allergic patients. We now report soluble polymers prepared by conjugating bee venom with human serum albumin with glutaraldehyde. The bee venom-albumin polymer (BVAP) preparation was fractionated on Sephacryl S-300 to have a molecular weight range higher than catalase. /sup 125/I-labeled bee venom phospholipase A was almost completely incorporated into BVAP. Rabbit antibody responses to bee venom and bee venom phospholipase A were induced by BVAP. Human antisera against bee venom were absorbed by BVAP. No new antigenic determinants on BVAP were present as evidenced by absorption of antisera against BVAP by bee venom and albumin. BVAP has potential immunotherapeutic value in patients with anaphylactic sensitivity to bee venom.

  17. Polymerized soluble venom--human serum albumin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Patterson, R.; Suszko, I.M.; Grammer, L.C.

    1985-01-01

    Extensive previous studies have demonstrated that attempts to produce polymers of Hymenoptera venoms for human immunotherapy resulted in insoluble precipitates that could be injected with safety but with very limited immunogenicity in allergic patients. We now report soluble polymers prepared by conjugating bee venom with human serum albumin with glutaraldehyde. The bee venom-albumin polymer (BVAP) preparation was fractionated on Sephacryl S-300 to have a molecular weight range higher than catalase. 125 I-labeled bee venom phospholipase A was almost completely incorporated into BVAP. Rabbit antibody responses to bee venom and bee venom phospholipase A were induced by BVAP. Human antisera against bee venom were absorbed by BVAP. No new antigenic determinants on BVAP were present as evidenced by absorption of antisera against BVAP by bee venom and albumin. BVAP has potential immunotherapeutic value in patients with anaphylactic sensitivity to bee venom

  18. Neutralization of bitis parviocula (Ethiopian mountain adder venom by the south african institute of medical research (SAIMR antivenom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elda E. Sánchez

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The Ethiopian mountain adder (Bitis parviocula is a viperid known only from a few locations in southwestern Ethiopia. METHODS: a total of 30 µg of B. arietans and B. parviocula venoms were run on a 10-20% Tricine gel. To assay lethality dose fifty (LD50, five groups of eight mice for each venom were used. Hemorrhagic activity for crude venom was tested. Fibrinogenolytic activity of crude venom was measured using (2.5 mg/mL of fibrinogen solution and (0.03 mg/mL of crude venom. Gelatinase activity of the venom was tested on a Kodak X-OMAT TM film. Crude venoms of B. parviocula and B. arietans were tested for their abilities to affect clotting time, clotting rate and platelet function on whole human blood. RESULTS: The (SAIMR antivenom was confirmed in this study to neutralize the lethal activity of venom from Bitis parviocula. The ED50s of SAIMR antivenom on B. parviocula and B. arietans neutralized half of 18.2 and 66.7 mg of venom, respectively. The hemorrhagic activities (MHDs of B. parviocula and B. arietans were 0.88 and 1.7 µg, respectively. Bitis arietans and B. parviocula venoms degradated α and β chains at different times. The γ chains remained unaffected. Bitis parviocula venom did not exhibit gelatinase activity, while B. arietans had a MGD of 6.9 µg. At 3 mg/mL, the crude venoms of B. parviocula and B. arietans did not significantly affect clotting time or clotting rate. CONCLUSIONS: The SAIMR antivenom is very effective in neutralizing the venom of B. parviocula and should be considered in treating envenomations by these snakes.

  19. The dielectric properties of neutron irradiated snake venom and its pathological impact

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hanafy, M.S.; Rahmy, N.A.; Abd El-Khalek, M.M.

    1999-01-01

    The changes in the dielectric properties of a saline solution of Cerastes cerastes snake venom after irradiation with low-level doses of fast neutrons from a Cf-252 source, were investigated. The pathological changes in the internal organs such as liver, kidney spleen, lung and heart of the rats injected with unirradiated and irradiated venom were also studied. The changes in the molecular structure of a diluted saline solution of snake venom were measured through dielectric relaxation studies in the frequency range 0.1-10 MHz at 4±0.5 deg C. The absorption spectra of the venom solution were measured in the wavelength range 200 to 600 nm. The results indicated remarkable changes in the molecular radii, shape, relaxation time and dielectric increment of the venom molecules as a result of irradiation. Also, the intensities of the absorption bands of the venom solution decreased as a result of the irradiation process. Furthermore, the pathological examination results indicated that the toxicity of the irradiated venom decreased as compared with that of unirradiated venom, hence increasing the chance of repair of the affected organs. (author)

  20. Revisiting the Therapeutic Potential of Bothrops jararaca Venom: Screening for Novel Activities Using Connectivity Mapping

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carolina Alves Nicolau

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Snake venoms are sources of molecules with proven and potential therapeutic applications. However, most activities assayed in venoms (or their components are of hemorrhagic, hypotensive, edematogenic, neurotoxic or myotoxic natures. Thus, other relevant activities might remain unknown. Using functional genomics coupled to the connectivity map (C-map approach, we undertook a wide range indirect search for biological activities within the venom of the South American pit viper Bothrops jararaca. For that effect, venom was incubated with human breast adenocarcinoma cell line (MCF7 followed by RNA extraction and gene expression analysis. A list of 90 differentially expressed genes was submitted to biosimilar drug discovery based on pattern recognition. Among the 100 highest-ranked positively correlated drugs, only the antihypertensive, antimicrobial (both antibiotic and antiparasitic, and antitumor classes had been previously reported for B. jararaca venom. The majority of drug classes identified were related to (1 antimicrobial activity; (2 treatment of neuropsychiatric illnesses (Parkinson’s disease, schizophrenia, depression, and epilepsy; (3 treatment of cardiovascular diseases, and (4 anti-inflammatory action. The C-map results also indicated that B. jararaca venom may have components that target G-protein-coupled receptors (muscarinic, serotonergic, histaminergic, dopaminergic, GABA, and adrenergic and ion channels. Although validation experiments are still necessary, the C-map correlation to drugs with activities previously linked to snake venoms supports the efficacy of this strategy as a broad-spectrum approach for biological activity screening, and rekindles the snake venom-based search for new therapeutic agents.

  1. Mastocytosis and insect venom allergy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonadonna, Patrizia; Zanotti, Roberta; Müller, Ulrich

    2010-08-01

    To analyse the association of systemic allergic hymenoptera sting reactions with mastocytosis and elevated baseline serum tryptase and to discuss diagnosis and treatment in patients with both diseases. In recent large studies on patients with mastocytosis a much higher incidence of severe anaphylaxis following hymenoptera stings than in the normal population was documented. In patients with hymenoptera venom allergy, elevated baseline tryptase is strongly associated with severe anaphylaxis. Fatal sting reactions were reported in patients with mastocytosis, notably after stopping venom immunotherapy. During venom immunotherapy most patients with mastocytosis are protected from further sting reactions. Based on these observations immunotherapy for life is recommended for patients with mastocytosis and venom allergy. The incidence of allergic side-effects is increased in patients with mastocytosis and elevated baseline tryptase, especially in those allergic to Vespula venom. Premedication with antihistamines, or omalizumab in cases with recurrent severe side-effects, can be helpful. In all patients with anaphylaxis following hymenoptera stings, baseline serum tryptase should be determined. A value above 11.4 microg/l is often due to mastocytosis and indicates a high risk of very severe anaphylaxis following re-stings. Venom immunotherapy is safe and effective in this situation.

  2. Effects of Mucuna pruriens protease inhibitors on Echis carinatus venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hope-Onyekwere, Nnadozie Stanley; Ogueli, Godwin Ifeanyi; Cortelazzo, Alessio; Cerutti, Helena; Cito, Annarita; Aguiyi, John C; Guerranti, Roberto

    2012-12-01

    The medicinal plant Mucuna pruriens, with reputed anti-snake venom properties has been reported to contain a kunitz-type trypsin inhibitor. This study was undertaken to further evaluate the protease inhibitory potential of gpMuc, a multiform glycoprotein, and other protein fractions from M. pruriens seeds against trypsin, chymotrypsin, Echis carinatus snake venom, ecarin and thrombin. The results showed that gpMuc inhibited both trypsin and chymotrypsin activities and was thermally stable, maintaining its trypsin inhibitory activity at temperatures of up to 50°C. Its structural conformation was also maintained at pH ranges of 4-7. Immunoreactivity study confirms that it contains protease-recognizing epitope on one of its isoforms. The whole protein extract of M. pruriens seeds inhibited prothrombin activation by ecarin and whole E. carinatus venom, and also thrombin-like activity using chromogenic assay. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  3. Component-resolved diagnostics to direct in venom immunotherapy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Blank, Simon; Bilò, Maria Beatrice; Ollert, Markus

    2018-01-01

    , the increasing knowledge about the molecular structure and relevance of important venom allergens and their availability as recombinant allergens, devoid of cross-reactive carbohydrate determinants, resulted in the development of an advanced component-resolved diagnostics (CRD) approach in venom allergy. Already...... immunotherapeutic intervention. Moreover, the detailed knowledge about sensitization profiles on a molecular level might open new options to identify patients who are at increased risk for side effects or not to respond to immunotherapy. Therefore, increasing potential of CRD becomes evident, to direct therapeutic...

  4. 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. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. and Société Française de Biochimie et Biologie Moléculaire (SFBBM). All rights reserved.

  5. Disgust: Evolved function and structure

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tybur, J.M.; Lieberman, D.; Kurzban, R.; DeScioli, P.

    2013-01-01

    Interest in and research on disgust has surged over the past few decades. The field, however, still lacks a coherent theoretical framework for understanding the evolved function or functions of disgust. Here we present such a framework, emphasizing 2 levels of analysis: that of evolved function and

  6. Snake venom instability | Willemse | African Zoology

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Egyptian cobra Naja haje haje) and puffadder (Bills arietans). Considerable differences in electrophoretic characteristics were found between fresh venom and commercial venom samples from the same species of snake. These differences could be attributed partly to the instability of snake venom under conditions of drying ...

  7. Biological and Biochemical Potential of Sea Snake Venom and Characterization of Phospholipase A2 and Anticoagulation Activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Damotharan, Palani; Veeruraj, Anguchamy; Arumugam, Muthuvel; Balasubramanian, Thangavel

    2016-03-01

    This study is designed to isolate and purify a novel anti-clotting protein component from the venom of Enhydrina schistosa, and explore its biochemical and biological activities. The active protein was purified from the venom of E. schistosa by ion-exchange chromatography using DEAE-cellulose. The venom protein was tested by various parameters such as, proteolytic, haemolytic, phospholipase and anti-coagulant activities. 80 % purity was obtained in the final stage of purification and the purity level of venom was revealed as a single protein band of about 44 kDa in SDS-polyacrylamide electrophoresis under reducing conditions. The results showed that the Potent hemolytic activity was observed against cow, goat, chicken and human (A, B and O positive) erythrocytes. Furthermore, the clotting assays showed that the venom of E. schistosa significantly prolonged in activated partial thromboplastin time, thrombin time, and prothrombin time. Venomous enzymes which hydrolyzed casein and gelatin substrate were found in this venom protein. Gelatinolytic activity was optimal at pH 5-9 and (1)H NMR analysis of purified venom was the base line information for the structural determination. These results suggested that the E. schistosa venom holds good promise for the development of novel lead compounds for pharmacological applications in near future.

  8. Toxicity and utilization of chemical weapons: does toxicity and venom utilization contribute to the formation of species communities?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Westermann, Fabian L; McPherson, Iain S; Jones, Tappey H; Milicich, Lesley; Lester, Philip J

    2015-08-01

    Toxicity and the utilization of venom are essential features in the ecology of many animal species and have been hypothesized to be important factors contributing to the assembly of communities through competitive interactions. Ants of the genus Monomorium utilize a variety of venom compositions, which have been reported to give them a competitive advantage. Here, we investigate two pairs of Monomorium species, which differ in the structural compositions of their venom and their co-occurrence patterns with the invasive Argentine ant. We looked at the effects of Monomorium venom toxicity, venom utilization, and aggressive physical interactions on Monomorium and Argentine ant survival rates during arena trials. The venom toxicity of the two species co-occurring with the invasive Argentine ants was found to be significantly higher than the toxicity of the two species which do not. There was no correlation between venom toxicity and Monomorium survival; however, three of the four Monomorium species displayed significant variability in their venom usage which was associated with the number of Argentine ant workers encountered during trials. Average Monomorium mortality varied significantly between species, and in Monomorium smithii and Monomorium antipodum, aggressive interactions with Argentine ants had a significant negative effect on their mortality. Our study demonstrates that different factors and strategies can contribute to the ability of a species to withstand the pressure of a dominant invader at high abundance, and venom chemistry appears to be only one of several strategies utilized.

  9. Optimization of antiscorpion venom production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. Ozkan

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available The present study was carried out to produce highly efficient antivenom from a small number of telsons in a short time. Venom solution was prepared through maceration of telsons from Androctonus crassicauda (Olivier, 1807 collected in the Southeastern Anatolia Region, Turkey. Lethal dose 50% (LD50 of the venom solution injected into mice was 1 ml/kg (95% confidence interval; 0.8-1.3, according to probit analysis. Different adjuvants (Freund's Complete Adjuvant, Freund's Incomplete Adjuvant, and 0.4% aluminium phosphate, at increasing doses and combined with venom, were subcutaneously injected into horses on days 0, 14, 21, 28, 35, and 42 of the experiment. Antivenom was collected from the immunized horses on days 45, 48, and 51 using the pepsin digestive method. The antivenom effective dose 50% (ED50 in mice was 0.5 ml (95% confidence interval; 0.40-0.58, according to probit analysis. It was concluded that 0.5 ml antivenom neutralized a venom dose 35-fold higher than the venom LD50. Thus, highly potent antivenom could be produced from about 238 telsons in 51 days.

  10. Polarized DIS Structure Functions from Neural Networks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Del Debbio, L.; Guffanti, A.; Piccione, A.

    2007-01-01

    We present a parametrization of polarized Deep-Inelastic-Scattering (DIS) structure functions based on Neural Networks. The parametrization provides a bias-free determination of the probability measure in the space of structure functions, which retains information on experimental errors and correlations. As an example we discuss the application of this method to the study of the structure function g 1 p (x,Q 2 )

  11. Diversification of a single ancestral gene into a successful toxin superfamily in highly venomous Australian funnel-web spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pineda, Sandy S; Sollod, Brianna L; Wilson, David; Darling, Aaron; Sunagar, Kartik; Undheim, Eivind A B; Kely, Laurence; Antunes, Agostinho; Fry, Bryan G; King, Glenn F

    2014-03-05

    Spiders have evolved pharmacologically complex venoms that serve to rapidly subdue prey and deter predators. The major toxic factors in most spider venoms are small, disulfide-rich peptides. While there is abundant evidence that snake venoms evolved by recruitment of genes encoding normal body proteins followed by extensive gene duplication accompanied by explosive structural and functional diversification, the evolutionary trajectory of spider-venom peptides is less clear. Here we present evidence of a spider-toxin superfamily encoding a high degree of sequence and functional diversity that has evolved via accelerated duplication and diversification of a single ancestral gene. The peptides within this toxin superfamily are translated as prepropeptides that are posttranslationally processed to yield the mature toxin. The N-terminal signal sequence, as well as the protease recognition site at the junction of the propeptide and mature toxin are conserved, whereas the remainder of the propeptide and mature toxin sequences are variable. All toxin transcripts within this superfamily exhibit a striking cysteine codon bias. We show that different pharmacological classes of toxins within this peptide superfamily evolved under different evolutionary selection pressures. Overall, this study reinforces the hypothesis that spiders use a combinatorial peptide library strategy to evolve a complex cocktail of peptide toxins that target neuronal receptors and ion channels in prey and predators. We show that the ω-hexatoxins that target insect voltage-gated calcium channels evolved under the influence of positive Darwinian selection in an episodic fashion, whereas the κ-hexatoxins that target insect calcium-activated potassium channels appear to be under negative selection. A majority of the diversifying sites in the ω-hexatoxins are concentrated on the molecular surface of the toxins, thereby facilitating neofunctionalisation leading to new toxin pharmacology.

  12. The structural science of functional materials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Catlow, C Richard A

    2018-01-01

    The growing complexity of functional materials and the major challenges this poses to structural science are discussed. The diversity of structural materials science and the contributions that computation is making to the field are highlighted.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  14. Structure and Function of Your Skin

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Name: Category: Share: Yes No, Keep Private Structure & Function of Your Skin Share | What It Looks Like . . . ... in the dermis. What It Does . . . The major function of skin is to provide a barrier between ...

  15. Structure functions from chiral soliton models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Weigel, H.; Reinhardt, H.; Gamberg, L.

    1997-01-01

    We study nucleon structure functions within the bosonized Nambu-Jona-Lasinio (NJL) model where the nucleon emerges as a chiral soliton. We discuss the model predictions on the Gottfried sum rule for electron-nucleon scattering. A comparison with a low-scale parametrization shows that the model reproduces the gross features of the empirical structure functions. We also compute the leading twist contributions of the polarized structure functions g 1 and g 2 in this model. We compare the model predictions on these structure functions with data from the E143 experiment by GLAP evolving them from the scale characteristic for the NJL-model to the scale of the data

  16. Structural symmetry and protein function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodsell, D S; Olson, A J

    2000-01-01

    The majority of soluble and membrane-bound proteins in modern cells are symmetrical oligomeric complexes with two or more subunits. The evolutionary selection of symmetrical oligomeric complexes is driven by functional, genetic, and physicochemical needs. Large proteins are selected for specific morphological functions, such as formation of rings, containers, and filaments, and for cooperative functions, such as allosteric regulation and multivalent binding. Large proteins are also more stable against denaturation and have a reduced surface area exposed to solvent when compared with many individual, smaller proteins. Large proteins are constructed as oligomers for reasons of error control in synthesis, coding efficiency, and regulation of assembly. Symmetrical oligomers are favored because of stability and finite control of assembly. Several functions limit symmetry, such as interaction with DNA or membranes, and directional motion. Symmetry is broken or modified in many forms: quasisymmetry, in which identical subunits adopt similar but different conformations; pleomorphism, in which identical subunits form different complexes; pseudosymmetry, in which different molecules form approximately symmetrical complexes; and symmetry mismatch, in which oligomers of different symmetries interact along their respective symmetry axes. Asymmetry is also observed at several levels. Nearly all complexes show local asymmetry at the level of side chain conformation. Several complexes have reciprocating mechanisms in which the complex is asymmetric, but, over time, all subunits cycle through the same set of conformations. Global asymmetry is only rarely observed. Evolution of oligomeric complexes may favor the formation of dimers over complexes with higher cyclic symmetry, through a mechanism of prepositioned pairs of interacting residues. However, examples have been found for all of the crystallographic point groups, demonstrating that functional need can drive the evolution of

  17. Isolation, expression and characterization of a novel dual serine protease inhibitor, OH-TCI, from king cobra venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Ying-Ying; Liu, Shu-Bai; Lee, Wen-Hui; Qian, Jin-Qiao; Zhang, Yun

    2008-10-01

    Snake venom Kunitz/BPTI members are good tools for understanding of structure-functional relationship between serine proteases and their inhibitors. A novel dual Kunitz/BPTI serine proteinase inhibitor named OH-TCI (trypsin- and chymotrypsin-dual inhibitor from Ophiophagus hannah) was isolated from king cobra venom by three chromatographic steps of gel filtration, trypsin affinity and reverse phase HPLC. OH-TCI is composed of 58 amino acid residues with a molecular mass of 6339Da. Successful expression of OH-TCI was performed as the maltose-binding fusion protein in E. coli DH5alpha. Much different from Oh11-1, the purified native and recombinant OH-TCI both had strong inhibitory activities against trypsin and chymotrypsin although the sequence identity (74.1%) between them is very high. The inhibitor constants (K(i)) of recombinant OH-TCI were 3.91 x 10(-7) and 8.46 x10(-8)M for trypsin and chymotrypsin, respectively. To our knowledge, it was the first report of Kunitz/BPTI serine proteinase inhibitor from snake venom that had equivalent trypsin and chymotrypsin inhibitory activities.

  18. Structural and Functional Studies of a Bothropic Myotoxin Complexed to Rosmarinic Acid: New Insights into Lys49-PLA2 Inhibition

    Science.gov (United States)

    dos Santos, Juliana I.; Cardoso, Fábio F.; Soares, Andreimar M.; dal Pai Silva, Maeli; Gallacci, Márcia; Fontes, Marcos R. M.

    2011-01-01

    Snakebite envenoming is an important public health problem in many tropical and subtropical countries, and is considered a neglected tropical disease by the World Health Organization. Most severe cases are inflicted by species of the families Elapidae and Viperidae, and lead to a number of systemic and local effects in the victim. One of the main problems regarding viperidic accidents is prominent local tissue damage whose pathogenesis is complex and involves the combined actions of a variety of venom components. Phospholipases A2 (PLA2s) are the most abundant muscle-damaging components of these venoms. Herein, we report functional and structural studies of PrTX-I, a Lys49-PLA2 from Bothops pirajai snake venom, and the influence of rosmarinic acid (RA) upon this toxin's activities. RA is a known active component of some plant extracts and has been reported as presenting anti-myotoxic properties related to bothopic envenomation. The myotoxic activity of Lys49-PLA2s is well established in the literature and although no in vivo neurotoxicity has been observed among these toxins, in vitro neuromuscular blockade has been reported for some of these proteins. Our in vitro studies show that RA drastically reduces both the muscle damage and the neuromuscular blockade exerted by PrTX-I on mice neuromuscular preparations (by ∼80% and ∼90%, respectively). These results support the hypothesis that the two effects are closely related and lead us to suggest that they are consequences of the muscle membrane-destabilizing activity of the Lys49-PLA2. Although the C-terminal region of these proteins has been reported to comprise the myotoxic site, we demonstrate by X-ray crystallographic studies that RA interacts with PrTX-I in a different region. Consequently, a new mode of Lys49-PLA2 inhibition is proposed. Comparison of our results with others in the literature suggests possible new ways to inhibit bothropic snake venom myotoxins and improve serum therapy. PMID:22205953

  19. A Polychaete's powerful punch: venom gland transcriptomics of Glycera reveals a complex cocktail of toxin homologs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Reumont, Björn M; Campbell, Lahcen I; Richter, Sandy; Hering, Lars; Sykes, Dan; Hetmank, Jörg; Jenner, Ronald A; Bleidorn, Christoph

    2014-09-05

    Glycerids are marine annelids commonly known as bloodworms. Bloodworms have an eversible proboscis adorned with jaws connected to venom glands. Bloodworms prey on invertebrates, and it is known that the venom glands produce compounds that can induce toxic effects in animals. Yet, none of these putative toxins has been characterized on a molecular basis. Here we present the transcriptomic profiles of the venom glands of three species of bloodworm, Glycera dibranchiata, Glycera fallax and Glycera tridactyla, as well as the body tissue of G. tridactyla. The venom glands express a complex mixture of transcripts coding for putative toxin precursors. These transcripts represent 20 known toxin classes that have been convergently recruited into animal venoms, as well as transcripts potentially coding for Glycera-specific toxins. The toxins represent five functional categories: Pore-forming and membrane-disrupting toxins, neurotoxins, protease inhibitors, other enzymes, and CAP domain toxins. Many of the transcripts coding for putative Glycera toxins belong to classes that have been widely recruited into venoms, but some are homologs of toxins previously only known from the venoms of scorpaeniform fish and monotremes (stonustoxin-like toxin), turrid gastropods (turripeptide-like peptides), and sea anemones (gigantoxin I-like neurotoxin). This complex mixture of toxin homologs suggests that bloodworms employ venom while predating on macroscopic prey, casting doubt on the previously widespread opinion that G. dibranchiata is a detritivore. Our results further show that researchers should be aware that different assembly methods, as well as different methods of homology prediction, can influence the transcriptomic profiling of venom glands. © The Author(s) 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  20. Structure and Function of Lipase

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skjold-Jørgensen, Jakob

    .e. the waterlipidinterface. For Thermomyces lanuginosus lipase (TlL) and related lipases, activation of the enzymeinvolves a rearrangement of a structural domain, called the “lid”, which covers the active site inhomogenous aqueous solution. At the water-lipid interface, the lid is displaced from the active site andmoves...... the water-lipid interface, structural movements occurring during activation have been difficult to probeexperimentally. In this work, novel variants of TlL were constructed based on rational design with amutated lid-region in order to elucidate the impact of the lid-residue composition and characteristics...... onthe activation mechanism. From characterization studies of these variants we have shown (Paper I) thatthe lid-region plays a crucial role in governing interfacial activation and enzymatic activity. Specifically,using a combination of spectroscopic and enzymatic activity-based methods we have...

  1. Structure and function in biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hirs, C.H.W.

    1976-01-01

    A summary is given of the history of the developments of structural chemistry in biology beginning with the work of the bacteriologist Ehrlich leading to a comprehensive examination of the influence of size and configuration on the interaction between specific antibodies and side-chain determinants. Recent developments include the recognition of a higher order of specificity in the interaction of proteins with one another

  2. Carbohydrate recognition by the rhamnose-binding lectin SUL-I with a novel three-domain structure isolated from the venom of globiferous pedicellariae of the flower sea urchin Toxopneustes pileolus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hatakeyama, Tomomitsu; Ichise, Ayaka; Unno, Hideaki; Goda, Shuichiro; Oda, Tatsuya; Tateno, Hiroaki; Hirabayashi, Jun; Sakai, Hitomi; Nakagawa, Hideyuki

    2017-08-01

    The globiferous pedicellariae of the venomous sea urchin Toxopneustes pileolus contains several biologically active proteins. We have cloned the cDNA of one of the toxin components, SUL-I, which is a rhamnose-binding lectin (RBL) that acts as a mitogen through binding to carbohydrate chains on target cells. Recombinant SUL-I (rSUL-I) was produced in Escherichia coli cells, and its carbohydrate-binding specificity was examined with the glycoconjugate microarray analysis, which suggested that potential target carbohydrate structures are galactose-terminated N-glycans. rSUL-I exhibited mitogenic activity for murine splenocyte cells and toxicity against Vero cells. The three-dimensional structure of the rSUL-I/l-rhamnose complex was determined by X-ray crystallographic analysis at a 1.8 Å resolution. The overall structure of rSUL-I is composed of three distinctive domains with a folding structure similar to those of CSL3, a RBL from chum salmon (Oncorhynchus keta) eggs. The bound l-rhamnose molecules are mainly recognized by rSUL-I through hydrogen bonds between its 2-, 3-, and 4-hydroxy groups and Asp, Asn, and Glu residues in the binding sites, while Tyr and Ser residues participate in the recognition mechanism. It was also inferred that SUL-I may form a dimer in solution based on the molecular size estimated via dynamic light scattering as well as possible contact regions in its crystal structure. © 2017 The Protein Society.

  3. Viper and cobra venom neutralization by beta-sitosterol and stigmasterol isolated from the root extract of Pluchea indica Less. (Asteraceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomes, A; Saha, Archita; Chatterjee, Ipshita; Chakravarty, A K

    2007-09-01

    We reported previously that the methanolic root extract of the Indian medicinal plant Pluchea indica Less. (Asteraceae) could neutralize viper venom-induced action [Alam, M.I., Auddy, B., Gomes, A., 1996. Viper venom neutralization by Indian medicinal plant (Hemidesmus indicus and P. indica) root extracts. Phytother. Res. 10, 58-61]. The present study reports the neutralization of viper and cobra venom by beta-sitosterol and stigmasterol isolated from the root extract of P. indica Less. (Asteraceae). The active fraction (containing the major compound beta-sitosterol and the minor compound stigmasterol) was isolated and purified by silica gel column chromatography and the structure was determined using spectroscopic analysis (EIMS, (1)H NMR, (13)C NMR). Anti-snake venom activity was studied in experimental animals. The active fraction was found to significantly neutralize viper venom-induced lethal, hemorrhagic, defibrinogenation, edema and PLA(2) activity. Cobra venom-induced lethality, cardiotoxicity, neurotoxicity, respiratory changes and PLA(2) activity were also antagonized by the active component. It potentiated commercial snake venom antiserum action against venom-induced lethality in male albino mice. The active fraction could antagonize venom-induced changes in lipid peroxidation and superoxide dismutase activity. This study suggests that beta-sitosterol and stigmasterol may play an important role, along with antiserum, in neutralizing snake venom-induced actions.

  4. Structure functions and correlations in nuclei

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fantoni, S.

    1988-01-01

    In this paper the results obtained for the static structure function S(k) and the longitudinal structure function S L (k) of 3 H, 3 He and 4 He nuclei and nuclear matter are presented and discussed. The calculations have been performed using realistic wave functions obtained from Faddeev and variational theories. The Monte Carlo method has been used to calculate the structure functions of finite systems, and the FHNC/SOC method for nuclear matter. The results for the 3 He nucleus are in agreement with the recent Saclay data. The results for nuclear matter are compared with the experimental data relative to heavier nuclei, like e.g. 40 Ca

  5. Connectivity maps for biosimilar drug discovery in venoms: the case of Gila monster venom and the anti-diabetes drug Byetta®.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aramadhaka, Lavakumar Reddy; Prorock, Alyson; Dragulev, Bojan; Bao, Yongde; Fox, Jay W

    2013-07-01

    instances and negative correlation with 868 instances. Interestingly, the Gila monster venom and Byetta(®) both showed positive correlation with the anti-diabetic drugs troglitazone, of the thiazolidinedione class, and metformin, of the biguanide class, although Byetta(®) as a glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) agonist functions in a different manner than either of these two classes of anti-diabetic drugs. In summary, despite the fact that Gila monster venom contains a mixture of biologically active molecules, similarities in terms of perturbation of gene expression profiles on MCF7 cells were observed between the venom and the drug Byetta(®). Furthermore, using Connectivity Mapping the Gila monster venom was demonstrated to have nodes of positive correlation to several anti-diabetic drugs two of which were the same as observed with Byetta(®). Therefore, this study suggests that by using this approach novel drug activities heretofore unconsidered may be discovered in venoms using informatic tools and Connectivity Mapping. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. 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

    2016-07-23

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

  7. Interferons: between structure and function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katarzyna Bandurska

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Interferons are a family of proteins that are released by a variety of cells in response to infections caused by viruses. Currently, we distinguish three types of interferons. They are classified based on the nucleotide sequence, interaction with specific receptors, chromosomal location, structure and physicochemical properties. The following interferons are classified as type I: α, β, ω, κ, ε, ζ, τ, δ, ν. They are recognized and bound by a receptor formed by two peptides, IFN-αR1 and IFN-αR2. Representative of type II interferons is interferon-γ. It binds to a receptor composed of chains IFNGR-1 and IFNGR-2. The recently classified type III interferons comprise IFN-λ1, IFN-λ2, and IFN-λ3. They act on receptors formed by λR1 IFN-and IL-10R2 subunits. A high level of antiviral protection is achieved by IFN-α, IFN-β and IFN-λ. Antiviral activity of interferons is based on the induction and regulation of innate and acquired immune mechanisms. By binding to transmembrane receptors, IFN interacts with target cells mainly by activating the JAK/STAT, but also other signaling pathways. This leads to induction and activation of many antiviral agents, such as protein kinase RNA-activated (PKR, ribonuclease 2-5A pathway, and Mx proteins, as well as numerous apoptotic pathways. As a result of the protective effect of interferons, the virus binding to cells and viral particles penetration into cells is stopped, and the release of the nucleocapsid from an envelope is suppressed. Disruption of transcription and translation processes of the structural proteins prevents the formation of virions or budding of viruses, and as a result degradation of the viral mRNA; the started processes inhibit the chain synthesis of viral proteins and therefore further stimulate the immune system cells.

  8. from Cerastes cerastes venom gland

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Sequence analysis and alignment using bioinformatic programs indicated that samples 1, 2 and 3 bear significant homology to the metalloprotease family of snake venom sequences deposited in the Genbank. Translation to the amino acid sequence and alignment using protein database showed strong homology with ...

  9. Diagnosis of Hymenoptera venom allergy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bilo, BM; Rueff, F; Mosbech, H; Bonifazi, F; Oude Elberink, JNG

    2005-01-01

    The purpose of diagnostic procedure is to classify a sting reaction by history, identify the underlying pathogenetic mechanism, and identify the offending insect. Diagnosis of Hymenoptera venom allergy thus forms the basis for the treatment. In the central and northern Europe vespid (mainly Vespula

  10. Histology and histochemistry of the venom apparatus of the black scorpion Androctonus crassicauda (Olivier, 1807 (Scorpiones: Buthidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    BM Jarrar

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The venom apparatus of the black scorpion Androctonus crassicauda has been characterized histologically and histochemically in the present study. The results showed that this apparatus consists of paired venom glands, each of which initially presents its own canal and posteriorily both fuse into a single common one. Each gland is covered by a sheath of striated muscle and is lined with extensively folded secretory epithelium (formed of non-secretory and secretory venom-producing cells. The outcomes also revealed that the venom-producing cells of both glands produce neutral mucosubstances, sialomucins, sulfomucins and proteins, but are devoid of glycogen. Cysteine, tyrosine, tryptophan and arginine were also detected along with activities of acid and alkaline phosphatases, mitochondrial adenosine triphosphatase, aminopeptidase, cholinesterase and non-specific esterases. Structure and secretion of scorpion venom glands are discussed within the context of the present results.

  11. Recent advances in the understanding of brown spider venoms: From the biology of spiders to the molecular mechanisms of toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gremski, Luiza Helena; Trevisan-Silva, Dilza; Ferrer, Valéria Pereira; Matsubara, Fernando Hitomi; Meissner, Gabriel Otto; Wille, Ana Carolina Martins; Vuitika, Larissa; Dias-Lopes, Camila; Ullah, Anwar; de Moraes, Fábio Rogério; Chávez-Olórtegui, Carlos; Barbaro, Katia Cristina; Murakami, Mario Tyago; Arni, Raghuvir Krishnaswamy; Senff-Ribeiro, Andrea; Chaim, Olga Meiri; Veiga, Silvio Sanches

    2014-06-01

    The Loxosceles genus spiders (the brown spiders) are encountered in all the continents, and the clinical manifestations following spider bites include skin necrosis with gravitational lesion spreading and occasional systemic manifestations, such as intravascular hemolysis, thrombocytopenia and acute renal failure. Brown spider venoms are complex mixtures of toxins especially enriched in three molecular families: the phospholipases D, astacin-like metalloproteases and Inhibitor Cystine Knot (ICK) peptides. Other toxins with low level of expression also present in the venom include the serine proteases, serine protease inhibitors, hyaluronidases, allergen factors and translationally controlled tumor protein (TCTP). The mechanisms by which the Loxosceles venoms act and exert their noxious effects are not fully understood. Except for the brown spider venom phospholipase D, which causes dermonecrosis, hemolysis, thrombocytopenia and renal failure, the pathological activities of the other venom toxins remain unclear. The objective of the present review is to provide insights into the brown spider venoms and loxoscelism based on recent results. These insights include the biology of brown spiders, the clinical features of loxoscelism and the diagnosis and therapy of brown spider bites. Regarding the brown spider venom, this review includes a description of the novel toxins revealed by molecular biology and proteomics techniques, the data regarding three-dimensional toxin structures, and the mechanism of action of these molecules. Finally, the biotechnological applications of the venom components, especially for those toxins reported as recombinant molecules, and the challenges for future study are discussed. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skejić, Jure; Hodgson, Wayne C.

    2013-01-01

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

  13. Insights into the venom composition and evolution of an endoparasitoid wasp by combining proteomic and transcriptomic analyses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Zhichao; Fang, Qi; Wang, Lei; Liu, Jinding; Zhu, Yu; Wang, Fei; Li, Fei; Werren, John H; Ye, Gongyin

    2016-01-25

    Parasitoid wasps are abundant and diverse hymenopteran insects that lay their eggs into the internal body (endoparasitoid) or on the external surface (ectoparasitoid) of their hosts. To make a more conducive environment for the wasps' young, both ecto- and endoparasitoids inject venoms into the host to modulate host immunity, metabolism and development. Endoparasitoids have evolved from ectoparasitoids independently in different hymenopteran lineages. Pteromalus puparum, a pupal endoparasitoid of various butterflies, represents a relatively recent evolution of endoparasitism within pteromalids. Using a combination of transcriptomic and proteomic approaches, we have identified 70 putative venom proteins in P. puparum. Most of them show higher similarity to venom proteins from the related ectoparasitoid Nasonia vitripennis than from other more distantly related endoparasitoids. In addition, 13 venom proteins are similar to venoms of distantly related endoparasitoids but have no detectable venom matches in Nasonia. These venom proteins may have a role in adaptation to endoparasitism. Overall, these results lay the groundwork for more detailed studies of venom function and adaptation to the endoparasitic lifestyle.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jure Skejić

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

  15. Morphological characterization of the venom apparatus in the wolf spider Lycosa singoriensis (Laxmann, 1770

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N Yigit

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The wolf spider Lycosa singoriensis (Laxmann, 1770 (Lycosidae: Araneae is distributed throughout central and eastern Europe, including Russia, Kazakhistan and Turkey. This study describes the venom apparatus morphology of L. singoriensis through scanning electron microscopy (SEM. Its structure follows the general architecture observed in other spiders. Generally, a venom apparatus is composed by a pair of venom glands and chelicerae. L. singoriensis chelicerae are robust and consist of a stout basis and a movable apical segment (fang. The fang rests in a groove on the basal segment that is covered by different types of hair. L. singoriensis venom glands present equal size and measure about 4 mm in length. Each gland is enclosed by irregular muscular layers.

  16. Functional materials discovery using energy-structure-function maps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pulido, Angeles; Chen, Linjiang; Kaczorowski, Tomasz; Holden, Daniel; Little, Marc A; Chong, Samantha Y; Slater, Benjamin J; McMahon, David P; Bonillo, Baltasar; Stackhouse, Chloe J; Stephenson, Andrew; Kane, Christopher M; Clowes, Rob; Hasell, Tom; Cooper, Andrew I; Day, Graeme M

    2017-03-30

    Molecular crystals cannot be designed in the same manner as macroscopic objects, because they do not assemble according to simple, intuitive rules. Their structures result from the balance of many weak interactions, rather than from the strong and predictable bonding patterns found in metal-organic frameworks and covalent organic frameworks. Hence, design strategies that assume a topology or other structural blueprint will often fail. Here we combine computational crystal structure prediction and property prediction to build energy-structure-function maps that describe the possible structures and properties that are available to a candidate molecule. Using these maps, we identify a highly porous solid, which has the lowest density reported for a molecular crystal so far. Both the structure of the crystal and its physical properties, such as methane storage capacity and guest-molecule selectivity, are predicted using the molecular structure as the only input. More generally, energy-structure-function maps could be used to guide the experimental discovery of materials with any target function that can be calculated from predicted crystal structures, such as electronic structure or mechanical properties.

  17. Study of gamma radiation from 60Co effects on Apis mellifera venom: biochemical, pharmacological and immunological aspects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Costa, Helena

    2001-01-01

    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. Ionizing radiation is able to modify molecular structures affecting the biological properties of proteins. It decreases toxic and enzymatic activities and so, it appears promising as a venom detoxification tool. The main objective of this work was to study the effects of gamma radiation on bee venom, regarding biochemical, pharmacological and immunological aspects. Africanized Apis mellifera whole venom (2 mg/ml) in 0.15 M NaCl solution was irradiated with 2 kGy in a 60 Co source. Native and irradiated bee venoms were submitted to high performance size exclusion chromatography (Tosohaas G2000SW column), high performance reversed phase chromatography in a C-18 column under water/acetonitrile gradient, SDS-PAGE. For both venoms studies have been carried out in UV absorption spectrum, protein concentration, hemolytic activity, and PLA 2 activity analysis, lethality assay (LD 50 ). Biodistribution studies was carried out after labelling native and irradiated bee venom with 99m Tc. The results showed that gamma radiation did not change the protein concentration nor its immunogenicity, although it could be observed that irradiated bee venom UV spectrum and SDS-PAGE profile presented differences when compared to native bee venom. This suggests that some structural alterations in bee venom components could have occurred after irradiation. HPLC-RP profiles showed that gamma radiation could have caused conformational changes, such as unfolding of molecule chains, changing their hydrophobic groups exposuring. The hemolytic and the PLA 2 activities of irradiated bee venom were smaller than the native ones. The gamma radiation diminished the toxicity of bee venom, but did not abolish its bioactivity, like hemolysis. Biodistribution studies

  18. Phenomenology of the electron structure function

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Slominski, W.; Szwed, J.

    2001-01-01

    The advantages of introducing the electron structure function (ESF) in electron induced processes are demonstrated. Contrary to the photon structure function it is directly measured in such processes. At present energies, a simultaneous analysis of both the electron and the photon structure functions gives an important test of the experimentally applied methods. Estimates of the ESF at LEP momenta are given. At very high momenta contributions from W and Z bosons together with γ-Z interference can be observed. Predictions for the next generation of experiments are given. (orig.)

  19. Kinins in ant venoms--a comparison with venoms of related Hymenoptera

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Piek, T.; Schmidt, J. O.; de Jong, J. M.; Mantel, P.

    1989-01-01

    1. Venom preparations have been made of six ant, one pompilid wasp, two mutillid wasp, and four social wasp species. 2. The venoms were analysed pharmacologically in order to detect kinin-like activity. 3. Due to the small amounts of venoms available only a cascade of smooth muscle preparation could

  20. Structure of N-Terminal Sequence Asp-Ala-Glu-Phe-Arg-His-Asp-Ser of Aβ-Peptide with Phospholipase A2 from Venom of Andaman Cobra Sub-Species Naja naja sagittifera at 2.0 Å Resolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zeenat Mirza

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Alzheimer’s disease (AD is one of the most significant social and health burdens of the present century. Plaques formed by extracellular deposits of amyloid β (Aβ are the prime player of AD’s neuropathology. Studies have implicated the varied role of phospholipase A2 (PLA2 in brain where it contributes to neuronal growth and inflammatory response. Overall contour and chemical nature of the substrate-binding channel in the low molecular weight PLA2s are similar. This study involves the reductionist fragment-based approach to understand the structure adopted by N-terminal fragment of Alzheimer’s Aβ peptide in its complex with PLA2. In the current communication, we report the structure determined by X-ray crystallography of N-terminal sequence Asp-Ala-Glu-Phe-Arg-His-Asp-Ser (DAEFRHDS of Aβ-peptide with a Group I PLA2 purified from venom of Andaman Cobra sub-species Naja naja sagittifera at 2.0 Å resolution (Protein Data Bank (PDB Code: 3JQ5. This is probably the first attempt to structurally establish interaction between amyloid-β peptide fragment and hydrophobic substrate binding site of PLA2 involving H bond and van der Waals interactions. We speculate that higher affinity between Aβ and PLA2 has the therapeutic potential of decreasing the Aβ–Aβ interaction, thereby reducing the amyloid aggregation and plaque formation in AD.

  1. Effects of Co60 gamma radiation on the immunogenic and antigenic properties of Bothrops jararacussu venom

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Spencer, Patrick J.; Nascimento, Nanci do; Rogero, Jose R.

    1997-01-01

    Ionizing radiation has been successfully employed to attenuate animals toxins and venoms for immunizing antisera producing animals. However, the radiation effects on antigenicity and immunogenecity have not yet been elucidated. In the present work, we investigated the effects of gamma rays on the antigenic and immunogenicity have not yet been elucidated. In the present work, we investigated the effects of gamma rays on the antigenic and immunogenic behaviour of Bothrops jararacussu venon. Venom samples (2mg/ml in 150 mM NaCl) were irradiated with 500, 1000 and 2000 Gy of 60 Co gamma rays. These samples were submitted to antigen capture ELISA on plates coated with commercial bothropic antiserum. Results suggest a loss of reactivity of the 1000 and 2000 Gy irradiated samples. Antibodies against native and 2000 Gy irradiated venoms were produced in rabbits. Both sera able to bind native venom with a slightly higher titer for anti-irradiated serum. These data suggest that radiation promoted structural modification on the antigen molecules. However since the antibodies produced against irradiated antivenom were able to recognize native venom, there must have been preservation of some antigenic determinants. It has already been demosntrated that irradiation of proteins leads to structural modifications and unfolding of the molecules. Our data suggest that irradiation led to conformational epitopes destruction with preservation of linear epitopes and that the response against irradiated venom may be attributed to these linear antigenic determinants. (author). 8 refs., 3 figs

  2. Four RNA families with functional transient structures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Jing Yun A; Meyer, Irmtraud M

    2015-01-01

    Protein-coding and non-coding RNA transcripts perform a wide variety of cellular functions in diverse organisms. Several of their functional roles are expressed and modulated via RNA structure. A given transcript, however, can have more than a single functional RNA structure throughout its life, a fact which has been previously overlooked. Transient RNA structures, for example, are only present during specific time intervals and cellular conditions. We here introduce four RNA families with transient RNA structures that play distinct and diverse functional roles. Moreover, we show that these transient RNA structures are structurally well-defined and evolutionarily conserved. Since Rfam annotates one structure for each family, there is either no annotation for these transient structures or no such family. Thus, our alignments either significantly update and extend the existing Rfam families or introduce a new RNA family to Rfam. For each of the four RNA families, we compile a multiple-sequence alignment based on experimentally verified transient and dominant (dominant in terms of either the thermodynamic stability and/or attention received so far) RNA secondary structures using a combination of automated search via covariance model and manual curation. The first alignment is the Trp operon leader which regulates the operon transcription in response to tryptophan abundance through alternative structures. The second alignment is the HDV ribozyme which we extend to the 5' flanking sequence. This flanking sequence is involved in the regulation of the transcript's self-cleavage activity. The third alignment is the 5' UTR of the maturation protein from Levivirus which contains a transient structure that temporarily postpones the formation of the final inhibitory structure to allow translation of maturation protein. The fourth and last alignment is the SAM riboswitch which regulates the downstream gene expression by assuming alternative structures upon binding of SAM. All

  3. An electrophysiological study on the effects of Pa-1G (a phospholipase A(2)) from the venom of king brown snake, Pseudechis australis, on neuromuscular function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fatehi, M; Rowan, E G; Harvey, A L

    2002-01-01

    The effects of Pa-1G, a phospholipase A(2) (PLA(2)) from the venom of the Australian king brown snake (Pseudechis australis) were determined on the release of acetylcholine, muscle resting membrane potential and motor nerve terminal action potential at mouse neuromuscular junction. Intracellular recording from endplate regions of mouse triangularis sterni nerve-muscle preparations revealed that Pa-1G (800 nM) significantly reduced the amplitude of endplate potentials within 10 min exposure. The quantal content of endplate potentials was decreased to 58+/-6% of control after 30 min exposure to 800 nM Pa-1G. The toxin also caused a partial depolarisation of mouse muscle fibres within 60 min exposure. Extracellular recording of action potentials at motor nerve terminals showed that Pa-1G reduced the waveforms associated with both sodium and potassium conductances. To investigate whether this was a direct or indirect effect of the toxin on these ionic currents, whole cell patch clamp experiments were performed using human neuroblastoma (SK-N-SH) cells and B82 mouse fibroblasts stably transfected with rKv1.2. Patch clamp recording experiments confirmed that potassium currents sensitive to alpha-dendrotoxin recorded from B82 cells and sodium currents in SK-N-SH cells were not affected by the toxin. Since neither facilitation of acetylcholine release at mouse neuromuscular junction nor depression of potassium currents in B82 cells has been observed, the apparent blockade of potassium currents at mouse motor nerve endings induced by the toxin is unlikely to be due to a selective block of potassium channels.

  4. Network structure shapes spontaneous functional connectivity dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Kelly; Hutchison, R Matthew; Bezgin, Gleb; Everling, Stefan; McIntosh, Anthony R

    2015-04-08

    The structural organization of the brain constrains the range of interactions between different regions and shapes ongoing information processing. Therefore, it is expected that large-scale dynamic functional connectivity (FC) patterns, a surrogate measure of coordination between brain regions, will be closely tied to the fiber pathways that form the underlying structural network. Here, we empirically examined the influence of network structure on FC dynamics by comparing resting-state FC (rsFC) obtained using BOLD-fMRI in macaques (Macaca fascicularis) to structural connectivity derived from macaque axonal tract tracing studies. Consistent with predictions from simulation studies, the correspondence between rsFC and structural connectivity increased as the sample duration increased. Regions with reciprocal structural connections showed the most stable rsFC across time. The data suggest that the transient nature of FC is in part dependent on direct underlying structural connections, but also that dynamic coordination can occur via polysynaptic pathways. Temporal stability was found to be dependent on structural topology, with functional connections within the rich-club core exhibiting the greatest stability over time. We discuss these findings in light of highly variable functional hubs. The results further elucidate how large-scale dynamic functional coordination exists within a fixed structural architecture. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/355579-10$15.00/0.

  5. An overview of Bothrops erythromelas venom

    OpenAIRE

    Nery,Neriane Monteiro; Luna,Karla Patrícia; Fernandes,Carla Freire Celedônio; Zuliani,Juliana Pavan

    2016-01-01

    Abstract This review discusses studies on the venom of Bothrops erythromelas published over the past 36 years. During this period, many contributions have been made to understand the venomous snake, its venom, and its experimental and clinical effects better. The following chronological overview is based on 29 articles that were published between 1979 and 2015, with emphasis on diverse areas. The complexity of this task demands an integration of multidisciplinary research tools to study toxin...

  6. Dipole rescattering and the nuclear structure function

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carvalho, F. [Depto de Ciencias Exatas e da Terra, Universidade Federal de Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil); Goncalves, V. P. [Instituto de Fisica e Matematica, Universidade Federal de Pelotas, Caixa Postal 354, CEP 96010-900, Pelotas, RS (Brazil); Navarra, F. S.; Oliveira, E. G. [Instituto de Fisica, Universidade de Sao Paulo Rua do Matao, Travessa R, 187, 05508-090 Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil)

    2013-03-25

    In the framework of the dipole model, we study the effects of the dipole multiple scatterings in a nuclear target and compute the nuclear structure function. We compare different unitarization schemes and confront our results with the E665 data.

  7. Structure and Structure-activity Relationship of Functional Organic Molecules

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2011-01-01

    @@ Research theme The group is made up of junior scientists from the State Key Laboratory of Elemento-organic Chemistry, Nankai University.The scientists focus their studis on the structure and structure-activity relationship of functional organic molecules not only because it has been the basis of their research, but also because the functional study of organic compounds is now a major scientific issue for organic chemists around the world.

  8. Structure functions of electroweak boson and leptons

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Slominski, W.; Szwed, J.

    1996-01-01

    The QCD structure of the electroweak bosons is reviewed and the lepton structure function is defined and calculated. The leading order splitting functions of electron into quarks are extracted, showing an important contribution from γ-Z interference. Leading logarithmic QCD evolution equations are constructed and solved in the asymptotic region where log 2 behavior of the Parton densities is observed. Possible applications with clear manifestation of ''resolved'' photon and weak bosons are discussed. 8 refs., 3 figs

  9. Proton structure functions at small x

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hentschinski, Martin

    2015-01-01

    Proton structure functions are measured in electron-proton collision through inelastic scattering of virtual photons with virtuality Q on protons; x denotes the momentum fraction carried by the struck parton. Proton structure functions are currently described with excellent accuracy in terms of scale dependent parton distribution functions, defined in terms of collinear factorization and DGLAP evolution in Q. With decreasing x however, parton densities increase and are ultimately expected to saturate. In this regime DGLAP evolution will finally break down and non-linear evolution equations w.r.t x are expected to take over. In the first part of the talk we present recent result on an implementation of physical DGLAP evolution. Unlike the conventional description in terms of parton distribution functions, the former describes directly the Q dependence of the measured structure functions. It is therefore physical insensitive to factorization scheme and scale ambiguities. It therefore provides a more stringent test of DGLAP evolution and eases the manifestation of (non-linear) small x effects. It however requires a precise measurement of both structure functions F 2 and F L , which will be only possible at future facilities, such as an Electron Ion Collider. In the second part we present a recent analysis of the small x region of the combined HERA data on the structure function F 2 . We demonstrate that (linear) next-to-leading order BFKL evolution describes the effective Pomeron intercept, determined from the combined HERA data, once a resummation of collinear enhanced terms is included and the renormalization scale is fixed using the BLM optimal scale setting procedure. We also provide a detailed description of the Q and x dependence of the full structure functions F 2 in the small x region, as measured at HERA. Predictions for the structure function F L are found to be in agreement with the existing HERA data. (paper)

  10. Immunochemical studies of yellowjacket venom proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, T P; Alagon, A C; Kuan, J; Sobotka, A K; Lichtenstein, L M

    1983-03-01

    The major proteins of yellowjacket venoms have been isolated and characterized immuno-chemically. They consist of hyaluronidase, phospholipase, and antigen 5. Venoms from three species of yellowjacket were studied. Vespula germanica, V. maculifrons, and V. vulgaris. The phospholipases could be isolated in good yield only when affinity chromatography was used to minimize limited proteolysis. A kallikrein-like peptidase was found present in the yellowjacket venom. Phospholipases from these three species were immunochemically indistinguishable from each other, as were their antigen 5s. Sera from individuals sensitive to yellowjacket venom contained IgE and IgG specific for antigen 5 and phospholipase.

  11. AGE STRUCTURE OR FUNCTIONAL RESPONSE? RECONCILING ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... surplus production that differ from traditional single-species management models. ... Specifically, while the ECOSIM “Arena” functional response and the von ... as a proxy for age structure rather than as a function of predator/prey behaviour, ...

  12. 2004 Structural, Function and Evolutionary Genomics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Douglas L. Brutlag Nancy Ryan Gray

    2005-03-23

    This Gordon conference will cover the areas of structural, functional and evolutionary genomics. It will take a systematic approach to genomics, examining the evolution of proteins, protein functional sites, protein-protein interactions, regulatory networks, and metabolic networks. Emphasis will be placed on what we can learn from comparative genomics and entire genomes and proteomes.

  13. IgE antibodies, FcεRIα, and IgE-mediated local anaphylaxis can limit snake venom toxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Starkl, Philipp; Marichal, Thomas; Gaudenzio, Nicolas; Reber, Laurent Lionel; Sibilano, Riccardo; Tsai, Mindy; Galli, Stephen Joseph

    2016-01-01

    Type 2 cytokine-related immune responses associated with development of antigen-specific IgE antibodies can contribute to pathology in patients with allergic diseases and to fatal anaphylaxis. However, recent findings in mice indicate that IgE also can enhance defense against honeybee venom. We tested whether IgE antibodies, IgE-dependent effector mechanisms, and a local anaphylactic reaction to an unrelated antigen can enhance defense against Russell viper venom (RVV) and determined whether such responses can be influenced by immunization protocol or mouse strain. We compared the resistance of RVV-immunized wild-type, IgE-deficient, and Fcer1a-deficient mice after injection of a potentially lethal dose of RVV. A single prior exposure to RVV enhanced the ability of wild-type mice, but not mice lacking IgE or functional FcεRI, to survive challenge with a potentially lethal amount of RVV. Moreover, IgE-dependent local passive cutaneous anaphylaxis in response to challenge with an antigen not naturally present in RVV significantly enhanced resistance to the venom. Finally, we observed different effects on resistance to RVV or honeybee venom in BALB/c versus C57BL/6 mice that had received a second exposure to that venom before challenge with a high dose of that venom. These observations illustrate the potential benefit of IgE-dependent effector mechanisms in acquired host defense against venoms. The extent to which type 2 immune responses against venoms can decrease pathology associated with envenomation seems to be influenced by the type of venom, the frequency of venom exposure, and the genetic background of the host. Copyright © 2015 American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Structure functions in the chiral bag model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sanjose, V.; Vento, V.; Centro Mixto CSIC/Valencia Univ., Valencia

    1989-01-01

    We calculate the structure functions of an isoscalar nuclear target for the deep inelastic scattering by leptons in an extended version of the chiral bag model which incorporates the qanti q structure of the pions in the cloud. Bjorken scaling and Regge behavior are satisfied. The model calculation reproduces the low-x behavior of the data but fails to explain the medium- to large-x behavior. Evolution of the quark structure functions seem inevitable to attempt a connection between the low-energy models and the high-energy behavior of quantum chromodynamics. (orig.)

  15. Structure functions in the chiral bag model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sanjose, V.; Vento, V.

    1989-07-13

    We calculate the structure functions of an isoscalar nuclear target for the deep inelastic scattering by leptons in an extended version of the chiral bag model which incorporates the qanti q structure of the pions in the cloud. Bjorken scaling and Regge behavior are satisfied. The model calculation reproduces the low-x behavior of the data but fails to explain the medium- to large-x behavior. Evolution of the quark structure functions seem inevitable to attempt a connection between the low-energy models and the high-energy behavior of quantum chromodynamics. (orig.).

  16. Molecular components and toxicity of the venom of the solitary wasp, Anoplius samariensis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hisada, Miki; Satake, Honoo; Masuda, Katsuyoshi; Aoyama, Masato; Murata, Kazuya; Shinada, Testuro; Iwashita, Takashi; Ohfune, Yasufumi; Nakajima, Terumi

    2005-01-01

    The solitary spider wasp, Anoplius samariensis, is known to exhibit a unique long-term, non-lethal paralysis in spiders that it uses as a food source for its larvae. However, neither detailed venom components nor paralytic compounds have ever been characterized. In this study, we examined the components in the low molecular weight fraction of the venom and the paralytic activity of the high molecular weight fraction. The major low molecular weight components of the venom were identified as γ-aminobutyric acid and glutamic acid by micro-liquid chromatography/electrospray ionization mass spectrometry and nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometry analysis. The sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and mass analysis revealed that the A. samariensis venom contained the various proteins with weights of 4-100 kDa. A biological assay using Joro spiders (Nephila clavata) clearly showed that the high molecular weight fraction of the venom prepared by ultrafiltration exerted as potent non-lethal long-term paralysis as the whole venom, whereas the low molecular weight fraction was devoid of any paralytic activity. These results indicated that several venomous proteins in the high molecular weight fraction are responsible for the paralytic activity. Furthermore, we determined the primary structure of one component designated As-fr-19, which was a novel multiple-cysteine peptide with high sequence similarity to several sea anemone and snake toxins including dendrotoxins, rather than any insect toxic peptides identified so far. Taken together, our data showed the unprecedented molecular and toxicological profiles of wasp venoms

  17. Structure functions and correlations in nuclei

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schiavilla, R.; Lewart, D.S.; Pandharipande, V.R.

    1987-01-01

    The static longitudinal structure function S l (k) and the static structure function S(k) of 3 H, 3 He and 4 He nuclei and nuclear matter are calculated using realistic wave functions obtained from Faddeev and variational calculations. In order to study the variation of the structure function with the number of particles in the system we also calculate S(k) of atomic helium liquid drops containing 4, 8, 20, 40, 70, 168 and 240 atoms. Monte Carlo integration is used to calculate the structure functions of finite systems, while those of nuclear matter are calculated with chain summation methods. The behaivior of S(k) and S l (k) at small values of k is discussed. We find that the recent Saclay data on S l (k) of the 3 He nucleus are in agreement with theory. Though the data indicate the the existence of correlations between the two protons in the 3 He nucleus, they are not accurate enough to draw interesting conclusions about the repulsive core in the nucleon-nucleon interaction. The structure functions of atomic helium liquid drops indicate a smooth variation of S(k) with the number of atoms in the drop. The S L (k) of the 4 He nucleus and nuclear matter are very similar for k > 1.5 fm -1 , and it appears plausible that S L (k) of nuclei having A > 3 may not depend significantly on A when k > 1.5 fm -1 . (orig.)

  18. Effective constraint algebras with structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bojowald, Martin; Brahma, Suddhasattwa

    2016-01-01

    This article presents the result that fluctuations and higher moments of a state, by themselves, do not imply quantum corrections in structure functions of constrained systems. Moment corrections are isolated from other types of quantum effects, such as factor-ordering choices and regularization, by introducing a new condition with two parts: (i) having a direct (or faithful) quantization of the classical structure functions, (ii) free of factor-ordering ambiguities. In particular, it is assumed that the classical constraints can be quantized in an anomaly free way, so that properties of the resulting constraint algebras can be derived. If the two-part condition is not satisfied, effective constraints can still be evaluated, but quantum effects may be stronger. Consequences for canonical quantum gravity, whose structure functions encode space–time structure, are discussed. In particular, deformed algebras found in models of loop quantum gravity provide reliable information even in the Planck regime. (paper)

  19. Magnetism and Structure in Functional Materials

    CERN Document Server

    Planes, Antoni; Saxena, Avadh

    2005-01-01

    Magnetism and Structure in Functional Materials addresses three distinct but related topics: (i) magnetoelastic materials such as magnetic martensites and magnetic shape memory alloys, (ii) the magnetocaloric effect related to magnetostructural transitions, and (iii) colossal magnetoresistance (CMR) and related magnanites. The goal is to identify common underlying principles in these classes of materials that are relevant for optimizing various functionalities. The emergence of apparently different magnetic/structural phenomena in disparate classes of materials clearly points to a need for common concepts in order to achieve a broader understanding of the interplay between magnetism and structure in this general class of new functional materials exhibiting ever more complex microstructure and function. The topic is interdisciplinary in nature and the contributors correspondingly include physicists, materials scientists and engineers. Likewise the book will appeal to scientists from all these areas.

  20. Structure functions are not parton probabilities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brodsky, Stanley J.; Hoyer, Paul; Sannino, Francesco; Marchal, Nils; Peigne, Stephane

    2002-01-01

    The common view that structure functions measured in deep inelastic lepton scattering are determined by the probability of finding quarks and gluons in the target is not correct in gauge theory. We show that gluon exchange between the fast, outgoing partons and target spectators, which is usually assumed to be an irrelevant gauge artifact, affects the leading twist structure functions in a profound way. This observation removes the apparent contradiction between the projectile (eikonal) and target (parton model) views of diffractive and small x B phenomena. The diffractive scattering of the fast outgoing quarks on spectators in the target causes shadowing in the DIS cross section. Thus the depletion of the nuclear structure functions is not intrinsic to the wave function of the nucleus, but is a coherent effect arising from the destructive interference of diffractive channels induced by final state interactions. This is consistent with the Glauber-Gribov interpretation of shadowing as a rescattering effect

  1. Grooves to tubes: evolution of the venom delivery system in a Late Triassic "reptile"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, Jonathan S.; Heckert, Andrew B.; Sues, Hans-Dieter

    2010-12-01

    Venom delivery systems occur in a wide range of extant and fossil vertebrates and are primarily based on oral adaptations. Teeth range from unmodified (Komodo dragons) to highly specialized fangs similar to hypodermic needles (protero- and solenoglyphous snakes). Developmental biologists have documented evidence for an infolding pathway of fang evolution, where the groove folds over to create the more derived condition. However, the oldest known members of venomous clades retain the same condition as their extant relatives, resulting in no fossil evidence for the transition. Based on a comparison of previously known specimens with newly discovered teeth from North Carolina, we describe a new species of the Late Triassic archosauriform Uatchitodon and provide detailed analyses that provide evidence for both venom conduction and document a complete structural series from shallow grooves to fully enclosed tubular canals. While known only from teeth, Uatchitodon is highly diagnostic in possessing compound serrations and for having two venom canals on each tooth in the dentition. Further, although not a snake, Uatchitodon sheds light on the evolutionary trajectory of venom delivery systems in amniotes and provide solid evidence for venom conduction in archosaur-line diapsids.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amrollahi Byoki, Elham; Zare Mirakabadi, Abbas

    2013-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elham Amrollahi Byoki

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available   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. Anticoagulation activity of crude venom, fractions and purified peptide were determined by using prothrombin time (PT and thrombin time (TT. Three fractions were partially purified from the venom of E. Carinatus by gel filtration on sephadex G-75 and final purification was performed by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC with C18 column. A purified anticoagulant factor was derived which showed a single protein band in SDS-PAGE electrophoresis under reducing condition. Results of PT and TT tests for purified peptide (EC217 were found to be 102±4.242 and < 5 min. respectively. Determination of molecular weight revealed that the active purified peptide (EC217 was about 30 KD. In conclusion, the present study showed that the venom of E. carinatus contains at least one anticoagulant factor.

  4. Biological effects of Naja haje crude venom on the hepatic and renal tissues of mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amany A. Tohamy

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Snake venoms are known to cause different metabolic disorders, altering cellular and enzymatic activities in animals and releasing pharmacological substances. In this study, the lethality as well as biochemical and histopathological effect of Egyptian cobra (Naja haje; N. haje crude venom at a sublethal dose have been investigated on liver and kidney of male mice. Venom injected intramuscularly in mice with 1/2 LD50 (approximately 0.0115 μg/g body weight of mice and the animals were sacrificed 6 days post injection. Results indicated that the injection of crude venom of the N. haje induced a significant disturbance in liver and kidney functions. In addition, results revealed that N. haje venom has a potent oxidative activity by increasing the level of reactive oxygen species with concomitant significant increase in hydrogen peroxide, lipid peroxidation, carbonyl protein and nitric oxide levels in hepatic and renal tissues. This activity was extended to decrease non-enzymatic and enzymatic antioxidant defense components such as glutathione, superoxide dismutase and catalase. Additionally, the biochemical alternations induced in hepatic and renal tissues were associated with significant alternations in the histological architecture of liver and kidney of injected mice. From this study, we can conclude that such injury could be considered among the factors that lead to death caused by N. haje venom.

  5. Structure and Functions of Linker Histones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyubitelev, A V; Nikitin, D V; Shaytan, A K; Studitsky, V M; Kirpichnikov, M P

    2016-03-01

    Linker histones such as variants H1, H5, and other similar proteins play an important role in regulation of chromatin structure and dynamics. However, interactions of linker histones with DNA and proteins, as well as specific functions of their different variants, are poorly studied. This is because they acquire tertiary structure only when interacting with a nucleosome, and because of limitations of currently available methods. However, deeper investigation of linker histones and their interactions with other proteins will address a number of important questions - from structure of compacted chromatin to regulation of early embryogenesis. In this review, structures of histone H1 variants and its interaction with chromatin DNA are considered. A possible functional significance of different H1 variants, a role of these proteins in maintaining interphase chromatin structure, and interactions of linker histones with other cellular proteins are also discussed.

  6. Recombinant snake venom prothrombin activators

    OpenAIRE

    L?vgren, Ann

    2012-01-01

    Three prothrombin activators; ecarin, which was originally isolated from the venom of the saw-scaled viper Echis carinatus, trocarin from the rough-scaled snake Tropidechis carinatus, and oscutarin from the Taipan snake Oxyuranus scutellatus, were expressed in mammalian cells with the purpose to obtain recombinant prothrombin activators that could be used to convert prothrombin to thrombin. We have previously reported that recombinant ecarin can efficiently generate thrombin without the need ...

  7. Intraspecific variation and influence of diet on the venom chemical profile of the Ectatomma brunneum Smith (Formicidae) ant evaluated by photoacoustic spectroscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernardi, Rafaella Caroline; Firmino, Ellen Liciane Barbosa; Mendonça, Angelica; Sguarizi-Antonio, Denise; Pereira, Márlon César; da Cunha Andrade, Luis Humberto; Antonialli-Junior, William Fernando; Lima, Sandro Marcio

    2017-10-01

    Studies of venomous animals have shown that environmental and genetic factors contribute to determining the chemical composition of venom. It is well known that external effects cause differences in the toxicity, concentration, and prey specificity of venom. However, the influence of different factors on the chemical profile of Hymenoptera venom remains little explored. In view of this, the aim of this study was to evaluate intraspecific differences and the influence of diet on the chemical profile of Ectatomma brunneum venom using Fourier transform infrared photoacoustic spectroscopy. For the study of intraspecific variation of the venom, foragers were collected at locations with different environmental conditions, such as urban, intermediate, woodland and monoculture sites. To investigate the influence of diet on the venom, two colonies were sampled in the same area and were maintained in the laboratory under controlled diet conditions and at room temperature. The mid-infrared absorption spectra obtained were interpreted using discriminant function analysis. The results showed significant differences among the chemical profiles of the venoms of individuals from different environments and individuals exposed to a controlled diet in the laboratory, suggesting that venom composition was determined not only by genetic traits inherent to the species, but also by exogenous factors. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Resonance contribution to electromagnetic structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bowling, A.L. Jr.

    1974-01-01

    The part of the pion and proton electromagnetic structure functions due to direct channel resonances in the virtual Compton amplitude is discussed. After a phenomenological discussion, based on the work of Bloom and Gilman, of resonance production in inelastic electroproduction, the single resonance contribution to the pion and proton structure functions is expressed in terms of transition form factors. Froissart-Gribov representations of the Compton amplitude partial waves are presented and are used to specify the spin dependence of the transition form factors. The dependence of the form factors on momentum transfer and resonance mass is assumed on the basis of the behavior of exclusive resonance electroproduction. The single resonance contributions are summed in the Bjorken limit, and the result exhibits Bjorken scaling. Transverse photons are found to dominate in the Bjorken limit, and the threshold behavior of the resonant part of the structure functions is related to the asymptotic behavior of exclusive form factors at large momentum transfer. The resonant parts of the annihilation structure functions are not in general given by simple analytic continuation in the scaling vari []ble ω' of the electroproduction structure functions. (Diss. Abstr. Int., B)

  9. Analyses of venom spitting in African cobras (Elapidae: Serpentes ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... all four species. The low levels of variation in venom volume, coupled with the variation in venom dispersal pattern, suggests a complexity to the regulation of venom flow in spitting cobras beyond simply neuromuscular control of the extrinsic venom gland. Keywords: defensive behaviour, snake, teeth, Naja, Hemachatus ...

  10. In-vitro diagnostics of Hymenoptera venom allergy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    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

  11. Characterizing the structure-function relationship reveals the mode of action of a novel antimicrobial peptide, P1, from jumper ant Myrmecia pilosula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tseng, Tien-Sheng; Tsai, Keng-Chang; Chen, Chinpan

    2017-06-01

    Microbial infections of antibiotic-resistant strains cause serious diseases and have a significant impact on public health worldwide, so novel antimicrobial drugs are urgently needed. Insect venoms, a rich source of bioactive components containing antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), are attractive candidates for new therapeutic agents against microbes. Recently, a novel peptide, P1, identified from the venom of the Australian jumper ant Myrmecia pilosula, showed potent antimicrobial activities against both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria, but its structure-function relationship is unknown. Here, we used biochemical and biophysical techniques coupled with computational simulations to explore the mode of action of P1 interaction with dodecylphosphocholine (DPC) micelles as a model membrane system. Our circular dichroism (CD) and NMR studies revealed an amphipathic α-helical structure for P1 upon interaction with DPC micelles. A paramagnetic relaxation enhancement approach revealed that P1 orients its α-helix segment (F6-G14) into DPC micelles. In addition, the α-helix segment could be essential for membrane permeabilization and antimicrobial activity. Moreover, the arginine residues R8, R11, and R15 significantly contribute to helix formation and membrane-binding affinity. The lysine residue K19 of the C-terminus functionally guides P1 to interact with DPC micelles in the early interaction stage. Our study provides insights into the mode of action of P1, which is valuable in modifying and developing potent AMPs as antibiotic drugs.

  12. The Structure-Function Linkage Database.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akiva, Eyal; Brown, Shoshana; Almonacid, Daniel E; Barber, Alan E; Custer, Ashley F; Hicks, Michael A; Huang, Conrad C; Lauck, Florian; Mashiyama, Susan T; Meng, Elaine C; Mischel, David; Morris, John H; Ojha, Sunil; Schnoes, Alexandra M; Stryke, Doug; Yunes, Jeffrey M; Ferrin, Thomas E; Holliday, Gemma L; Babbitt, Patricia C

    2014-01-01

    The Structure-Function Linkage Database (SFLD, http://sfld.rbvi.ucsf.edu/) is a manually curated classification resource describing structure-function relationships for functionally diverse enzyme superfamilies. Members of such superfamilies are diverse in their overall reactions yet share a common ancestor and some conserved active site features associated with conserved functional attributes such as a partial reaction. Thus, despite their different functions, members of these superfamilies 'look alike', making them easy to misannotate. To address this complexity and enable rational transfer of functional features to unknowns only for those members for which we have sufficient functional information, we subdivide superfamily members into subgroups using sequence information, and lastly into families, sets of enzymes known to catalyze the same reaction using the same mechanistic strategy. Browsing and searching options in the SFLD provide access to all of these levels. The SFLD offers manually curated as well as automatically classified superfamily sets, both accompanied by search and download options for all hierarchical levels. Additional information includes multiple sequence alignments, tab-separated files of functional and other attributes, and sequence similarity networks. The latter provide a new and intuitively powerful way to visualize functional trends mapped to the context of sequence similarity.

  13. Computational and in vitro insights on snake venom phospholipase A2 inhibitor of phytocompound ikshusterol3-O-glucoside of Clematis gouriana Roxb. ex DC.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muthusamy, Karthikeyan; Chinnasamy, Sathishkumar; Nagarajan, Subbiah; Sivaraman, Thirunavukkarasu

    2017-12-14

    Ikshusterol3-O-glucoside was isolated from Clematis gouriana Roxb. ex DC. root. A structure of the isolated compound was determined on the basis of various spectroscopic interpretations (UV, NMR, FTIR, and GC-MS-EI). This structure was submitted in the PubChem compound database (SID 249494133). SID 249494133 was carried out by density functional theory calculation to observe the chemical stability and electrostatic potential of this compound. The absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion property of this compound was predicted to evaluate the drug likeness and toxicity. In addition, molecular docking, quantum polarized ligand docking, prime MMGBSA calculation, and induced fit docking were performed to predict the binding status of SID 249494133 with the active site of phospholipase A 2 (PLA 2 ) (PDB ID: 1A3D). The stability of the compound in the active site of PLA 2 was carried out using molecular dynamics simulation. Further, the anti-venom activity of the compound was assessed using the PLA 2 assay against Naja naja (Indian cobra) crude venom. The results strongly show that Ikshusterol3-O-glucoside has a potent snake-venom neutralizing capacity and it might be a potential molecule for the therapeutic treatment for snakebites.

  14. Alkylation of histidine residues of Bothrops jararacussu venom proteins and isolated phospholipases A2: a biotechnological tool to improve the production of antibodies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guimarães, C L S; Andrião-Escarso, S H; Moreira-Dill, L S; Carvalho, B M A; Marchi-Salvador, D P; Santos-Filho, N A; Fernandes, C A H; Fontes, M R M; Giglio, J R; Barraviera, B; Zuliani, J P; Fernandes, C F C; Calderón, L A; Stábeli, R G; Albericio, F; da Silva, S L; Soares, A M

    2014-01-01

    Crude venom of Bothrops jararacussu and isolated phospholipases A2 (PLA2) of this toxin (BthTX-I and BthTX-II) were chemically modified (alkylation) by p-bromophenacyl bromide (BPB) in order to study antibody production capacity in function of the structure-function relationship of these substances (crude venom and PLA2 native and alkylated). BthTX-II showed enzymatic activity, while BthTX-I did not. Alkylation reduced BthTX-II activity by 50% while this process abolished the catalytic and myotoxic activities of BthTX-I, while reducing its edema-inducing activity by about 50%. Antibody production against the native and alkylated forms of BthTX-I and -II and the cross-reactivity of antibodies to native and alkylated toxins did not show any apparent differences and these observations were reinforced by surface plasmon resonance (SPR) data. Histopathological analysis of mouse gastrocnemius muscle sections after injection of PBS, BthTX-I, BthTX-II, or both myotoxins previously incubated with neutralizing antibody showed inhibition of the toxin-induced myotoxicity. These results reveal that the chemical modification of the phospholipases A2 (PLA2) diminished their toxicity but did not alter their antigenicity. This observation indicates that the modified PLA2 may provide a biotechnological tool to attenuate the toxicity of the crude venom, by improving the production of antibodies and decreasing the local toxic effects of this poisonous substance in animals used to produce antivenom.

  15. Boson structure functions from inelastic electron scattering

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    De Jager, C.W.

    1986-01-01

    The even /sup 104-110/Pd isotopes and /sup 196/Pt have been investigated at NIKHEF-K by high-resolution inelastic electron scattering. A new IBA-2 calculation has been performed for the Pd isotopes, in which the ratio of the proton and neutron coupling constants is taken from pion scattering. One set of boson structure functions sufficed for the description of the first and second E2-excitations in all Pd isotopes. The data showed no sensitivity for different structure functions for proton and neutron bosons. A preliminary analysis of a number of negative parity states (3/sup -/,5/sup -/ and 7/sup -/), observed in /sup 196/Pt, was performed through the introduction of an f-boson. The first E4-excitation in the palladium isotopes can be reasonably described with a β-structure function, but all other E4-excitations require the introduction of g-boson admixtures

  16. Lipase and phospholipase activities of Hymenoptera venoms ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    native gel), Polistes flavis venom has four major protein bands, one of which has lipase activity; with sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS-PAGE), the venom had eighteen bands with molecular weights ranging from a maximum of 94 kD and a minimum of ...

  17. 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 phosphoproteo...

  18. Cytoskeleton, endoplasmic reticulum and nucleus alterations in CHO-K1 cell line after Crotalus durissus terrificus (South American rattlesnake venom treatment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. P. Tamieti

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Snake venoms are toxic to a variety of cell types. However, the intracellular damages and the cell death fate induced by venom are unclear. In the present work, the action of the South American rattlesnake Crotalus durissus terrificus venom on CHO-K1 cell line was analyzed. The cells CHO-K1 were incubated with C. d. terrificus venom (10, 50 and 100g/ml for 1 and 24 hours, and structural alterations of actin filaments, endoplasmic reticulum and nucleus were assessed using specific fluorescent probes and agarose gel electrophoresis for DNA fragmentation. Significant structural changes were observed in all analyzed structures. DNA fragmentation was detected suggesting that, at the concentrations used, the venom induced apoptosis.

  19. Vortex structure and characterization of quasiperiodic functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dana, Itzhack; Chernov, Vladislav E

    2002-01-01

    Quasiperiodic functions (QPFs) are characterized by their full vortex structure in one unit cell. This characterization is much finer and more sensitive than the topological one given by the total vorticity per unit cell (the 'Chern index'). It is shown that QPFs with an arbitrarily prescribed vortex structure exist by constructing explicitly such a 'standard' QPF. Two QPFs with the same vortex structure are equivalent, in the sense that their ratio is a function which is strictly periodic, nonvanishing and at least continuous. A general QPF can then be approximately reconstructed from its vortex structure on the basis of the standard QPF and the equivalence concept. As another application of this concept, a simple method is proposed for calculating the quasiperiodic eigenvectors of periodic matrices. Possible applications to the quantum-chaos problem on a phase-space torus are briefly discussed

  20. The effects of Bee Venom and Sweet Bee Venom to the preadipocyte proliferation and lipolysis of adipocyte, localized fat accumulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Min-Ki Kim

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available Objectives : The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of Bee Venom and Sweet Bee Venom to the primary cultured preadipocyte, adipocytes, and localized fat tissue. Methods : Decreased preadipocyte proliferation and decreased lipogenesis are mechanisms to reduce obesity. So, preadipocytes and adipocytes were performed on cell cultures using Sprague-Dawley Rats and treated with 0.01-1mg/㎖ Bee Venom and Sweet Bee Venom. And porcine skin including fat tissue after treated Bee Venom and Sweet Bee Venom according to the dosage dependent variation are investigated the histologic changes after injection of these Pharmacopuncture. Result : Following results were obtained from the preadipocyte proliferation and lipolysis of adipocyte and histologic investigation of fat tissue. 1. Bee Venom and Sweet Bee Venom showed the effect of decreased preadipocyte proliferation depend on concentration. 2. Bee Venom and Sweet Bee Venom showed the effect of decreased the activity of glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase(GPDH significantly. 3. Bee Venom was not showed the effect of lipolysis, but Sweet Bee Venom was increased in low dosage and decreased in high dosage. 4. Investigated the histologic changes in porcine fat tissue after treated Bee Venom and Sweet Bee Venom, we knew that these Pharmacopuncture was activated nonspecific lysis of cell membranes depend on concentration. Conclusion : These results suggest that Bee Venom and Sweet Bee Venom efficiently induces decreased proliferation of preadipocyte and lipolysis in adipose tissue

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-02-01

    Metalloproteases play a fundamental role in snake venom envenomation inducing hemorrhagic, fibrigen(ogen)olytic and myotoxic effects in their victims. Several snake venoms, such as those from the Bothrops genus, present important local effects which are not efficiently neutralized by conventional serum therapy. Consequently, these accidents may result in permanent sequelae and disability, creating economic and social problems, especially in developing countries, leading the attention of the World Health Organization that considered ophidic envenomations a neglected tropical disease. Aiming to produce an efficient inhibitor against bothropic venoms, we synthesized different molecules classified as quinolinones - a group of low-toxic chemical compounds widely used as antibacterial and antimycobacterial drugs - and tested their inhibitory properties against hemorrhage caused by bothropic venoms. The results from this initial screening indicated the molecule 2-hydroxymethyl-6-methoxy-1,4-dihydro-4-quinolinone (Q8) was the most effective antihemorrhagic compound among all of the assayed synthetic quinolinones. Other in vitro and in vivo experiments showed this novel compound was able to inhibit significantly the hemorrhagic and/or proteolytic activities of bothropic crude venoms and isolated snake venom metalloproteases (SVMPs) even at lower concentrations. Docking and molecular dynamic simulations were also performed to get insights into the structural basis of Q8 inhibitory mechanism against proteolytic and hemorrhagic SVMPs. These structural studies demonstrated that Q8 may form a stable complex with SVMPs, impairing the access of substrates to the active sites of these toxins. Therefore, both experimental and structural data indicate that Q8 compound is an interesting candidate for antiophidic therapy, particularly for the treatment of the hemorrhagic and necrotic effects induced by bothropic venoms. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. and Société Française de

  2. Substrate recognition by complement convertases revealed in the C5-cobra venom factor complex

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Laursen, Nick Stub; Andersen, Kasper Røjkjær; Braren, Ingke

    2011-01-01

    with a protease subunit (Bb or C2a). We determined the crystal structures of the C3b homologue cobra venom factor (CVF) in complex with C5, and in complex with C5 and the inhibitor SSL7 at 4.3 Å resolution. The structures reveal a parallel two-point attachment between C5 and CVF, where the presence of SSL7 only...... slightly affects the C5-CVF interface, explaining the IgA dependence for SSL7-mediated inhibition of C5 cleavage. CVF functions as a relatively rigid binding scaffold inducing a conformational change in C5, which positions its cleavage site in proximity to the serine protease Bb. A general model...

  3. Transparent wood for functional and structural applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yuanyuan; Fu, Qiliang; Yang, Xuan; Berglund, Lars

    2017-12-01

    Optically transparent wood combines mechanical performance with optical functionalities is an emerging candidate for applications in smart buildings and structural optics and photonics. The present review summarizes transparent wood preparation methods, optical and mechanical performance, and functionalization routes, and discusses potential applications. The various challenges are discussed for the purpose of improved performance, scaled-up production and realization of advanced applications. This article is part of a discussion meeting issue `New horizons for cellulose nanotechnology'.

  4. Tears of Venom: Hydrodynamics of Reptilian Envenomation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Bruce A.; Herzog, Florian; Friedel, Paul; Rammensee, Sebastian; Bausch, Andreas; van Hemmen, J. Leo

    2011-05-01

    In the majority of venomous snakes, and in many other reptiles, venom is conveyed from the animal’s gland to the prey’s tissue through an open groove on the surface of the teeth and not through a tubular fang. Here we focus on two key aspects of the grooved delivery system: the hydrodynamics of venom as it interacts with the groove geometry, and the efficiency of the tooth-groove-venom complex as the tooth penetrates the prey’s tissue. We show that the surface tension of the venom is the driving force underlying the envenomation dynamics. In so doing, we explain not only the efficacy of the open groove, but also the prevalence of this mechanism among reptiles.

  5. [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.

  6. Pharmacological evaluation of bee venom and melittin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camila G. Dantas

    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.

  7. Proteomic Characterization of the Venom of Five Bombus (Thoracobombus) Species

    OpenAIRE

    Barkan, Nezahat Pınar; Bayazit, Mustafa Bilal; Ozel Demiralp, Duygu

    2017-01-01

    Venomous animals use venom, a complex biofluid composed of unique mixtures of proteins and peptides, to act on vital systems of the prey or predator. In bees, venom is solely used for defense against predators. However, the venom composition of bumble bees (Bombus sp.) is largely unknown. The Thoracobombus subgenus of Bombus sp. is a diverse subgenus represented by 14 members across Turkey. In this study, we sought out to proteomically characterize the venom of five Thoracobombus species by u...

  8. VenomKB, a new knowledge base for facilitating the validation of putative venom therapies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romano, Joseph D; Tatonetti, Nicholas P

    2015-11-24

    Animal venoms have been used for therapeutic purposes since the dawn of recorded history. Only a small fraction, however, have been tested for pharmaceutical utility. Modern computational methods enable the systematic exploration of novel therapeutic uses for venom compounds. Unfortunately, there is currently no comprehensive resource describing the clinical effects of venoms to support this computational analysis. We present VenomKB, a new publicly accessible knowledge base and website that aims to act as a repository for emerging and putative venom therapies. Presently, it consists of three database tables: (1) Manually curated records of putative venom therapies supported by scientific literature, (2) automatically parsed MEDLINE articles describing compounds that may be venom derived, and their effects on the human body, and (3) automatically retrieved records from the new Semantic Medline resource that describe the effects of venom compounds on mammalian anatomy. Data from VenomKB may be selectively retrieved in a variety of popular data formats, are open-source, and will be continually updated as venom therapies become better understood.

  9. 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.

  10. Clustering aspects in nuclear structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hirai, M.; Saito, K.; Watanabe, T.; Kumano, S.

    2011-01-01

    For understanding an anomalous nuclear effect experimentally observed for the beryllium-9 nucleus at the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, clustering aspects are studied in structure functions of deep inelastic lepton-nucleus scattering by using momentum distributions calculated in antisymmetrized (or fermionic) molecular dynamics (AMD) and also in a simple shell model for comparison. According to AMD, the 9 Be nucleus consists of two α-like clusters with a surrounding neutron. The clustering produces high-momentum components in nuclear wave functions, which affects nuclear modifications of the structure functions. We investigated whether clustering features could appear in the structure function F 2 of 9 Be along with studies for other light nuclei. We found that nuclear modifications of F 2 are similar in both AMD and shell models within our simple convolution description although there are slight differences in 9 Be. It indicates that the anomalous 9 Be result should be explained by a different mechanism from the nuclear binding and Fermi motion. If nuclear-modification slopes d(F 2 A /F 2 D )/dx are shown by the maximum local densities, the 9 Be anomaly can be explained by the AMD picture, namely by the clustering structure, whereas it certainly cannot be described in the simple shell model. This fact suggests that the large nuclear modification in 9 Be should be explained by large densities in the clusters. For example, internal nucleon structure could be modified in the high-density clusters. The clustering aspect of nuclear structure functions is an unexplored topic which is interesting for future investigations.

  11. In-Depth Glyco-Peptidomics Approach Reveals Unexpected Diversity of Glycosylated Peptides and Atypical Post-Translational Modifications in Dendroaspis angusticeps Snake Venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Degueldre, Michel; Echterbille, Julien; Smargiasso, Nicolas; Damblon, Christian; Gouin, Charlotte; Mourier, Gilles; Gilles, Nicolas; De Pauw, Edwin; Quinton, Loïc

    2017-11-18

    Animal venoms represent a valuable source of bioactive peptides that can be derived into useful pharmacological tools, or even innovative drugs. In this way, the venom of Dendroaspis angusticeps (DA), the Eastern Green Mamba, has been intensively studied during recent years. It mainly contains hundreds of large toxins from 6 to 9 kDa, each displaying several disulfide bridges. These toxins are the main target of venom-based studies due to their valuable activities obtained by selectively targeting membrane receptors, such as ion channels or G-protein coupled receptors. This study aims to demonstrate that the knowledge of venom composition is still limited and that animal venoms contain unexpected diversity and surprises. A previous study has shown that Dendroaspis angusticeps venom contains not only a cocktail of classical toxins, but also small glycosylated peptides. Following this work, a deep exploration of DA glycopeptidome by a dual nano liquid chromatography coupled to electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (nanoLC-ESI-MS) and Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS) analyses was initiated. This study reveals unsuspected structural diversity of compounds such as 221 glycopeptides, displaying different glycan structures. Sequence alignments underline structural similarities with natriuretic peptides already characterized in Elapidae venoms. Finally, the presence of an S -cysteinylation and hydroxylation of proline on four glycopeptides, never described to date in snake venoms, is also revealed by proteomics and affined by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) experiments.

  12. In-Depth Glyco-Peptidomics Approach Reveals Unexpected Diversity of Glycosylated Peptides and Atypical Post-Translational Modifications in Dendroaspis angusticeps Snake Venom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michel Degueldre

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Animal venoms represent a valuable source of bioactive peptides that can be derived into useful pharmacological tools, or even innovative drugs. In this way, the venom of Dendroaspis angusticeps (DA, the Eastern Green Mamba, has been intensively studied during recent years. It mainly contains hundreds of large toxins from 6 to 9 kDa, each displaying several disulfide bridges. These toxins are the main target of venom-based studies due to their valuable activities obtained by selectively targeting membrane receptors, such as ion channels or G-protein coupled receptors. This study aims to demonstrate that the knowledge of venom composition is still limited and that animal venoms contain unexpected diversity and surprises. A previous study has shown that Dendroaspis angusticeps venom contains not only a cocktail of classical toxins, but also small glycosylated peptides. Following this work, a deep exploration of DA glycopeptidome by a dual nano liquid chromatography coupled to electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (nanoLC-ESI-MS and Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS analyses was initiated. This study reveals unsuspected structural diversity of compounds such as 221 glycopeptides, displaying different glycan structures. Sequence alignments underline structural similarities with natriuretic peptides already characterized in Elapidae venoms. Finally, the presence of an S-cysteinylation and hydroxylation of proline on four glycopeptides, never described to date in snake venoms, is also revealed by proteomics and affined by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR experiments.

  13. Dracula's children: molecular evolution of vampire bat venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Low, Dolyce H W; Sunagar, Kartik; Undheim, Eivind A B; Ali, Syed A; Alagon, Alejandro C; Ruder, Tim; Jackson, Timothy N W; Pineda Gonzalez, Sandy; King, Glenn F; Jones, Alun; Antunes, Agostinho; Fry, Bryan G

    2013-08-26

    While vampire bat oral secretions have been the subject of intense research, efforts have concentrated only on two components: DSPA (Desmodus rotundus salivary plasminogen activator) and Draculin. The molecular evolutionary history of DSPA has been elucidated, while conversely draculin has long been known from only a very small fragment and thus even the basic protein class was not even established. Despite the fact that vampire bat venom has a multitude of effects unaccounted by the documented bioactivities of DSPA and draculin, efforts have not been made to establish what other bioactive proteins are secreted by their submaxillary gland. In addition, it has remained unclear whether the anatomically distinct anterior and posterior lobes of the submaxillary gland are evolving on separate gene expression trajectories or if they remain under the shared genetic control. Using a combined proteomic and transcriptomic approach, we show that identical proteins are simultaneously expressed in both lobes. In addition to recovering the known structural classes of DSPA, we recovered a novel DSPA isoform as well as obtained a very large sequence stretch of draculin and thus established that it is a mutated version of the lactotransferrin scaffold. This study reveals a much more complex secretion profile than previously recognised. In addition to obtaining novel versions of scaffolds convergently recruited into other venoms (allergen-like, CRiSP, kallikrein, Kunitz, lysozyme), we also documented novel expression of small peptides related to calcitonin, PACAP, and statherin. Other overexpressed protein types included BPI-fold, lacritin, and secretoglobin. Further, we investigate the molecular evolution of various vampire bat venom-components and highlight the dominant role of positive selection in the evolution of these proteins. Conspicuously many of the proteins identified in the proteome were found to be homologous to proteins with known activities affecting vasodilation and

  14. Snake venom metalloproteinases and disintegrins: interactions with cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  15. Progress on nuclear modifications of structure functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kumano S.

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available We report progress on nuclear structure functions, especially on their nuclear modifications and a new tensor structure function for the deuteron. To understand nuclear structure functions is an important step toward describing nuclei and QCD matters from low to high densities and from low to high energies in terms of fundamental quark and gluon degrees of freedom beyond conventional hadron and nuclear physics. It is also practically important for understanding new phenomena in high-energy heavy-ion collisions at RHIC and LHC. Furthermore, since systematic errors of current neutrinooscillation experiments are dominated by uncertainties of neutrino-nucleus interactions, such studies are valuable for finding new physics beyond current framework. Next, a new tensor-polarized structure function b1 is discussed for the deuteron. There was a measurement by HERMES; however, its data are inconsistent with the conventional convolution estimate based on the standard deuteron model with D-state admixture. This fact suggests that a new hadronic phenomenon should exist in the tensor-polarized deuteron at high energies, and it will be experimentally investigated at JLab from the end of 2010’s.

  16. Structure and function of mammalian cilia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Satir, Peter; Christensen, Søren T

    2008-01-01

    In the past half century, beginning with electron microscopic studies of 9 + 2 motile and 9 + 0 primary cilia, novel insights have been obtained regarding the structure and function of mammalian cilia. All cilia can now be viewed as sensory cellular antennae that coordinate a large number...

  17. Effects of irradiated Bothropstoxin-1 and Bothrops jararacussu crude venom on the immune system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Caproni, Priscila

    2009-01-01

    Ionizing radiation has been successfully employed to modify the immunological properties of biomolecules and has been proven to be a powerful tool to attenuate snake venoms toxicity without affecting and even increasing their immunogenic properties. Very promising results were obtained when crude animal venoms, as well as isolated toxins, were treated with 60 Co gamma rays, yielding toxoids with good immunogenicity, however, little is known about the modifications that irradiated molecules undergo and even less about the immunological response that such antigens elicit. At the present work, we have evaluated the effects on immune system of B10.PL and BALB/c mice of Bothrops jararacussu crude venom and isolated bothropstoxin-1 (Bthx-1), before and after gamma radiation exposition. According to our data, irradiation process promoted structural modifications on both isolated toxin and crude venom, characterized by higher molecular weight protein (aggregates and oligomers) formation. Irradiated samples were immunogenic and the antibodies elicited by them were able to recognize the native toxin in ELISA. These results indicate that irradiation of toxic proteins can promote significant modifications in their structures, but still retain many of the original antigenic and immunological properties. Also, our data indicate that the irradiated protein induced higher titers of IgG2b, suggesting that Th1 cells were predominantly involved. Results from Western blot assay showed that antibodies raised against irradiated bothropstoxin-1 recognize both native isolated toxin or crude venom. Cytotoxicity assay showed that irradiated toxin and crude venom were less toxic than their native counterpart. Thus, the viability of the macrophages cultured in the presence of irradiated Bthx-1 or crude venom was higher if compared with their native forms. LDH Assay showed that irradiated Bthx-1 promotes less muscular damage than the native form. Our data confirm a potential use of ionizing

  18. Collagens--structure, function, and biosynthesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gelse, K; Pöschl, E; Aigner, T

    2003-11-28

    The extracellular matrix represents a complex alloy of variable members of diverse protein families defining structural integrity and various physiological functions. The most abundant family is the collagens with more than 20 different collagen types identified so far. Collagens are centrally involved in the formation of fibrillar and microfibrillar networks of the extracellular matrix, basement membranes as well as other structures of the extracellular matrix. This review focuses on the distribution and function of various collagen types in different tissues. It introduces their basic structural subunits and points out major steps in the biosynthesis and supramolecular processing of fibrillar collagens as prototypical members of this protein family. A final outlook indicates the importance of different collagen types not only for the understanding of collagen-related diseases, but also as a basis for the therapeutical use of members of this protein family discussed in other chapters of this issue.

  19. MRI in Optic Neuritis: Structure, Function, Interactions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fuglø, Dan

    2011-01-01

    resonance imaging (MRI), and the visual evoked potential (VEP) continues to show a delayed P100 indicating persistent demyelination. The explanation for this apparent discrepancy between structure and function could be due to either a redundancy in the visual pathways so that some degree of signal loss...... will have very few or no clinical symptoms, or it could be due to compensatory mechanisms in the visual pathway or the visual cortex. In order to understand the pathophysiology and recovery processes in ON it is essential to have sensitive methods to asses both structure and function. These methods...... are low. Functional MRI (fMRI) is a non-invasive technique that can measure brain activity with a high spatial resolution. Recently, technical and methodological advancements have made it feasible to record VEPs and fMRI simultaneously and the relationship between averaged VEPs and averaged fMRI signals...

  20. Generalized functions, convergence structures, and their applications

    CERN Document Server

    Pap, Endre; Pilipović, Stevan; Vladimirov, Vasilij; International Conference "Generalized functions, convergence structures and their applications" (GFCA-87)

    1988-01-01

    This Proceedings consists of a collection of papers presented at the International Conference "Generalized functions, convergence structures and their applications" held from June 23-27, 1987 in Dubrovnik, Yugoslavia (GFCA-87): 71 participants from 21 countr~es from allover the world took part in the Conference. Proceedings reflects the work of the Conference. Plenary lectures of J. Burzyk, J. F. Colombeau, W. Gahler, H. Keiter, H. Komatsu, B. Stankovic, H. G. Tillman, V. S. Vladimirov provide an up-to-date account of the cur­ rent state of the subject. All these lectures, except H. G. Tillman's, are published in this volume. The published communications give the contemporary problems and achievements in the theory of generalized functions, in the theory of convergence structures and in their applications, specially in the theory of partial differential equations and in the mathematical physics. New approaches to the theory of generalized functions are presented, moti­ vated by concrete problems of applicat...

  1. Crystal structure of snake venom acetylcholinesterase in complex with inhibitory antibody fragment Fab410 bound at the peripheral site: evidence for open and closed states of a back door channel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourne, Yves; Renault, Ludovic; Marchot, Pascale

    2015-01-16

    The acetylcholinesterase found in the venom of Bungarus fasciatus (BfAChE) is produced as a soluble, non-amphiphilic monomer with a canonical catalytic domain but a distinct C terminus compared with the other vertebrate enzymes. Moreover, the peripheral anionic site of BfAChE, a surface site located at the active site gorge entrance, bears two substitutions altering sensitivity to cationic inhibitors. Antibody Elec410, generated against Electrophorus electricus acetylcholinesterase (EeAChE), inhibits EeAChE and BfAChE by binding to their peripheral sites. However, both complexes retain significant residual catalytic activity, suggesting incomplete gorge occlusion by bound antibody and/or high frequency back door opening. To explore a novel acetylcholinesterase species, ascertain the molecular bases of inhibition by Elec410, and document the determinants and mechanisms for back door opening, we solved a 2.7-Å resolution crystal structure of natural BfAChE in complex with antibody fragment Fab410. Crystalline BfAChE forms the canonical dimer found in all acetylcholinesterase structures. Equally represented open and closed states of a back door channel, associated with alternate positions of a tyrosine phenol ring at the active site base, coexist in each subunit. At the BfAChE molecular surface, Fab410 is seated on the long Ω-loop between two N-glycan chains and partially occludes the gorge entrance, a position that fully reflects the available mutagenesis and biochemical data. Experimentally based flexible molecular docking supports a similar Fab410 binding mode onto the EeAChE antigen. These data document the molecular and dynamic peculiarities of BfAChE with high frequency back door opening, and the mode of action of Elec410 as one of the largest peptidic inhibitors targeting the acetylcholinesterase peripheral site. © 2015 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  2. Structural and functional conservation of CLEC-2 with the species-specific regulation of transcript expression in evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Lan; Ren, Shifang; Zhu, Haiyan; Zhang, Dongmei; Hao, Yuqing; Ruan, Yuanyuan; Zhou, Lei; Lee, Chiayu; Qiu, Lin; Yun, Xiaojing; Xie, Jianhui

    2012-08-01

    CLEC-2 was first identified by sequence similarity to C-type lectin-like molecules with immune functions and has been reported as a receptor for the platelet-aggregating snake venom toxin rhodocytin and the endogenous sialoglycoprotein podoplanin. Recent researches indicate that CLEC-2-deficient mice were lethal at the embryonic stage associated with disorganized and blood-filled lymphatic vessels and severe edema. In view of a necessary role of CLEC-2 in the individual development, it is of interest to investigate its phylogenetic homology and highly conserved functional regions. In this work, we reported that CLEC-2 from different species holds with an extraordinary conservation by sequence alignment and phylogenetic tree analysis. The functional structures including N-linked oligosaccharide sites and ligand-binding domain implement a structural and functional conservation in a variety of species. The glycosylation sites (N120 and N134) are necessary for the surface expression CLEC-2. CLEC-2 from different species possesses the binding activity of mouse podoplanin. Nevertheless, the expression of CLEC-2 is regulated with a species-specific manner. The alternative splicing of pre-mRNA, a regulatory mechanism of gene expression, and the binding sites on promoter for several key transcription factors vary between different species. Therefore, CLEC-2 shares high sequence homology and functional identity. However the transcript expression might be tightly regulated by different mechanisms in evolution.

  3. A Polychaete’s Powerful Punch: Venom Gland Transcriptomics of Glycera Reveals a Complex Cocktail of Toxin Homologs

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Reumont, Björn M.; Richter, Sandy; Hering, Lars; Sykes, Dan; Hetmank, Jörg; Jenner, Ronald A.; Bleidorn, Christoph

    2014-01-01

    Glycerids are marine annelids commonly known as bloodworms. Bloodworms have an eversible proboscis adorned with jaws connected to venom glands. Bloodworms prey on invertebrates, and it is known that the venom glands produce compounds that can induce toxic effects in animals. Yet, none of these putative toxins has been characterized on a molecular basis. Here we present the transcriptomic profiles of the venom glands of three species of bloodworm, Glycera dibranchiata, Glycera fallax and Glycera tridactyla, as well as the body tissue of G. tridactyla. The venom glands express a complex mixture of transcripts coding for putative toxin precursors. These transcripts represent 20 known toxin classes that have been convergently recruited into animal venoms, as well as transcripts potentially coding for Glycera-specific toxins. The toxins represent five functional categories: Pore-forming and membrane-disrupting toxins, neurotoxins, protease inhibitors, other enzymes, and CAP domain toxins. Many of the transcripts coding for putative Glycera toxins belong to classes that have been widely recruited into venoms, but some are homologs of toxins previously only known from the venoms of scorpaeniform fish and monotremes (stonustoxin-like toxin), turrid gastropods (turripeptide-like peptides), and sea anemones (gigantoxin I-like neurotoxin). This complex mixture of toxin homologs suggests that bloodworms employ venom while predating on macroscopic prey, casting doubt on the previously widespread opinion that G. dibranchiata is a detritivore. Our results further show that researchers should be aware that different assembly methods, as well as different methods of homology prediction, can influence the transcriptomic profiling of venom glands. PMID:25193302

  4. Recognition of functional sites in protein structures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shulman-Peleg, Alexandra; Nussinov, Ruth; Wolfson, Haim J

    2004-06-04

    Recognition of regions on the surface of one protein, that are similar to a binding site of another is crucial for the prediction of molecular interactions and for functional classifications. We first describe a novel method, SiteEngine, that assumes no sequence or fold similarities and is able to recognize proteins that have similar binding sites and may perform similar functions. We achieve high efficiency and speed by introducing a low-resolution surface representation via chemically important surface points, by hashing triangles of physico-chemical properties and by application of hierarchical scoring schemes for a thorough exploration of global and local similarities. We proceed to rigorously apply this method to functional site recognition in three possible ways: first, we search a given functional site on a large set of complete protein structures. Second, a potential functional site on a protein of interest is compared with known binding sites, to recognize similar features. Third, a complete protein structure is searched for the presence of an a priori unknown functional site, similar to known sites. Our method is robust and efficient enough to allow computationally demanding applications such as the first and the third. From the biological standpoint, the first application may identify secondary binding sites of drugs that may lead to side-effects. The third application finds new potential sites on the protein that may provide targets for drug design. Each of the three applications may aid in assigning a function and in classification of binding patterns. We highlight the advantages and disadvantages of each type of search, provide examples of large-scale searches of the entire Protein Data Base and make functional predictions.

  5. Cardiovascular-Active Venom Toxins: An Overview.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rebello Horta, Carolina Campolina; Chatzaki, Maria; Rezende, Bruno Almeida; Magalhães, Bárbara de Freitas; Duarte, Clara Guerra; Felicori, Liza Figueiredo; Ribeiro Oliveira-Mendes, Bárbara Bruna; do Carmo, Anderson Oliveira; Chávez-Olórtegui, Carlos; Kalapothakis, Evanguedes

    2016-01-01

    Animal venoms are a mixture of bioactive compounds produced as weapons and used primarily to immobilize and kill preys. As a result of the high potency and specificity for various physiological targets, many toxins from animal venoms have emerged as possible drugs for the medication of diverse disorders, including cardiovascular diseases. Captopril, which inhibits the angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE), was the first successful venom-based drug and a notable example of rational drug design. Since captopril was developed, many studies have discovered novel bradykinin-potentiating peptides (BPPs) with actions on the cardiovascular system. Natriuretic peptides (NPs) have also been found in animal venoms and used as template to design new drugs with applications in cardiovascular diseases. Among the anti-arrhythmic peptides, GsMTx-4 was discovered to be a toxin that selectively inhibits the stretch-activated cation channels (SACs), which are involved in atrial fibrillation. The present review describes the main components isolated from animal venoms that act on the cardiovascular system and presents a brief summary of venomous animals and their venom apparatuses.

  6. 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; 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 b...

  7. Oblique photon expansion of QED structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chahine, C.

    1986-01-01

    In the oblique photon expansion, the collinear part of photon emission is summed up to all orders in perturbation theory. The number of oblique or non-collinear photons is the expansion order. Unlike in perturbation theory, every term of the expansion is both infrared finite and gauge invariant. The zero oblique photon contribution to the electromagnetic structure tensor in QED is computed in detail. The behaviors of the structure functions F1 and F2 are discussed in the soft and ultra-soft limits

  8. Modelling the interactions between animal venom peptides and membrane proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hung, Andrew; Kuyucak, Serdar; Schroeder, Christina I; Kaas, Quentin

    2017-12-01

    The active components of animal venoms are mostly peptide toxins, which typically target ion channels and receptors of both the central and peripheral nervous system, interfering with action potential conduction and/or synaptic transmission. The high degree of sequence conservation of their molecular targets makes a range of these toxins active at human receptors. The high selectivity and potency displayed by some of these toxins have prompted their use as pharmacological tools as well as drugs or drug leads. Molecular modelling has played an essential role in increasing our molecular-level understanding of the activity and specificity of animal toxins, as well as engineering them for biotechnological and pharmaceutical applications. This review focuses on the biological insights gained from computational and experimental studies of animal venom toxins interacting with membranes and ion channels. A host of recent X-ray crystallography and electron-microscopy structures of the toxin targets has contributed to a dramatic increase in the accuracy of the molecular models of toxin binding modes greatly advancing this exciting field of study. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'Venom-derived Peptides as Pharmacological Tools.' Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Structure of β-decay strength functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Naumov, Y.V.; Bykov, A.A.; Izosimov, I.N.

    1983-01-01

    The experimental and theoretical studies on the structure of the Gamow--Teller β-decay strength functions are reviewed. Also considered are processes such as M1 γ decay of analog states, the emission of delayed protons, neutrons, and α particles, delayed fission, and the (p, n) reaction at proton energies 100--200 MeV. The results of measurements of the strength functions by γ-ray total absorption are analyzed. It is shown that the β + decay of nuclei far from the stability band exhibits a new type of collective charge-exchange excitation: Gamow--Teller resonance with μ/sub tau/ = +1

  10. Structure of BRS-invariant local functionals

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brandt, F.

    1993-01-01

    For a large class of gauge theories a nilpotent BRS-operator s is constructed and its cohomology in the space of local functionals of the off-shell fields is shown to be isomorphic to the cohomology of s=s+d on functions f(C,T) of tensor fields T and of variables C which are constructed of the ghosts and the connection forms. The result allows general statements about the structure of invariant classical actions and anomaly cadidates whose BRS-variation vanishes off-shell. The assumptions under which the result holds are thoroughly discussed. (orig.)

  11. NAC transcription factors: structurally distinct, functionally diverse

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Olsen, Addie Nina; Ernst, Heidi A; Leggio, Leila Lo

    2005-01-01

    level and localization, and to the first indications of NAC participation in transcription factor networks. The recent determination of the DNA and protein binding NAC domain structure offers insight into the molecular functions of the protein family. Research into NAC transcription factors has......NAC proteins constitute one of the largest families of plant-specific transcription factors, and the family is present in a wide range of land plants. Here, we summarize the biological and molecular functions of the NAC family, paying particular attention to the intricate regulation of NAC protein...

  12. Phospholipase A2 activity of the Persian Gulf upside-down jellyfish venom (Cassiopea andromeda

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gholamhossean Mohebbi

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Background: The venomous jellyfish Cassiopea andromeda can produce envenomation and different toxicological and biological effects by their nematocysts. The phospholipase A2 enzymes (PLA2 are toxic and induce various pharmacological effects including neurotoxicity, myotoxicity and anticoagulant activities. The main aim of the current project was to screen the in vitro PLA2 activity of the C. andromeda crude venom. To better understand the experimental result; a molecular docking study was also performed. Materials and methods: The live specimens were collected from Nayband lagoon, by a trawl net, and separation of their tentacles was done according to Bloom 's et al., method. The PLA2 activity of crude venom was performed according to the acidimetric method of Tan and Tan. The lyophilized venom was subjected to Gas Chromatography/ Mass Spectroscopy, and the obtained structures were used for docking study against PLA2. The indoxam was considered as standard control. Results: The PLA2 activity of the jellyfish crude venom was 413 ±0.08 µmol/min/mg. Analysis of the crude venom detected seven compounds (i-vii using GC-MS. Docking data was also confirmed the experimental results. According to the docking results, the highest affinity (-6.7 (kcal/mol was observed in the compound “Pregn-5-ene-3,11-dione, 17,20:20,21 bis [methylenebis(oxy]-, cyclic 3-(1,2-ethane diyl acetal”. Conclusions: A high PLA2 level was found in the venom of C. andromeda. There was a good correlation between in vitro and in silico studies.

  13. 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

  14. Canopy Venom: Proteomic Comparison among New World Arboreal Pit-Viper Venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debono, Jordan; Cochran, Chip; Kuruppu, Sanjaya; Nouwens, Amanda; Rajapakse, Niwanthi W; Kawasaki, Minami; Wood, Kelly; Dobson, James; Baumann, Kate; Jouiaei, Mahdokht; Jackson, Timothy N W; Koludarov, Ivan; Low, Dolyce; Ali, Syed A; Smith, A Ian; Barnes, Andrew; Fry, Bryan G

    2016-07-08

    Central and South American pitvipers, belonging to the genera Bothrops and Bothriechis, have independently evolved arboreal tendencies. Little is known regarding the composition and activity of their venoms. In order to close this knowledge gap, venom proteomics and toxin activity of species of Bothriechis, and Bothrops (including Bothriopsis) were investigated through established analytical methods. A combination of proteomics and bioactivity techniques was used to demonstrate a similar diversification of venom composition between large and small species within Bothriechis and Bothriopsis. Increasing our understanding of the evolution of complex venom cocktails may facilitate future biodiscoveries.

  15. BEE VENOM TRAP DESIGN FOR PRODUCE BEE VENOM OF APIS MELLIFERA L. HONEY BEES

    OpenAIRE

    Budiaman

    2015-01-01

    Bee venom is one honey bee products are very expensive and are required in the pharmaceutical industry and as an anti-cancer known as nanobee, but the production technique is still done in the traditional way. The purpose of this study was to design a bee venom trap to produce bee venom of Apis mellifera L honey bees. The method used is to design several models of bee venom apparatus equipped weak current (DC current) with 3 variations of voltage, ie 12 volts, 15 volts and 18 volts coupled...

  16. Loxosceles gaucho venom-induced acute kidney injury--in vivo and in vitro studies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rui V Lucato

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Accidents caused by Loxosceles spider may cause severe systemic reactions, including acute kidney injury (AKI. There are few experimental studies assessing Loxosceles venom effects on kidney function in vivo. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In order to test Loxosceles gaucho venom (LV nephrotoxicity and to assess some of the possible mechanisms of renal injury, rats were studied up to 60 minutes after LV 0.24 mg/kg or saline IV injection (control. LV caused a sharp and significant drop in glomerular filtration rate, renal blood flow and urinary output and increased renal vascular resistance, without changing blood pressure. Venom infusion increased significantly serum creatine kinase and aspartate aminotransferase. In the LV group renal histology analysis found acute epithelial tubular cells degenerative changes, presence of cell debris and detached epithelial cells in tubular lumen without glomerular or vascular changes. Immunohistochemistry disclosed renal deposition of myoglobin and hemoglobin. LV did not cause injury to a suspension of fresh proximal tubules isolated from rats. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Loxosceles gaucho venom injection caused early AKI, which occurred without blood pressure variation. Changes in glomerular function occurred likely due to renal vasoconstriction and rhabdomyolysis. Direct nephrotoxicity could not be demonstrated in vitro. The development of a consistent model of Loxosceles venom-induced AKI and a better understanding of the mechanisms involved in the renal injury may allow more efficient ways to prevent or attenuate the systemic injury after Loxosceles bite.

  17. Proteins with Novel Structure, Function and Dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pohorille, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    Recently, a small enzyme that ligates two RNA fragments with the rate of 10(exp 6) above background was evolved in vitro (Seelig and Szostak, Nature 448:828-831, 2007). This enzyme does not resemble any contemporary protein (Chao et al., Nature Chem. Biol. 9:81-83, 2013). It consists of a dynamic, catalytic loop, a small, rigid core containing two zinc ions coordinated by neighboring amino acids, and two highly flexible tails that might be unimportant for protein function. In contrast to other proteins, this enzyme does not contain ordered secondary structure elements, such as alpha-helix or beta-sheet. The loop is kept together by just two interactions of a charged residue and a histidine with a zinc ion, which they coordinate on the opposite side of the loop. Such structure appears to be very fragile. Surprisingly, computer simulations indicate otherwise. As the coordinating, charged residue is mutated to alanine, another, nearby charged residue takes its place, thus keeping the structure nearly intact. If this residue is also substituted by alanine a salt bridge involving two other, charged residues on the opposite sides of the loop keeps the loop in place. These adjustments are facilitated by high flexibility of the protein. Computational predictions have been confirmed experimentally, as both mutants retain full activity and overall structure. These results challenge our notions about what is required for protein activity and about the relationship between protein dynamics, stability and robustness. We hypothesize that small, highly dynamic proteins could be both active and fault tolerant in ways that many other proteins are not, i.e. they can adjust to retain their structure and activity even if subjected to mutations in structurally critical regions. This opens the doors for designing proteins with novel functions, structures and dynamics that have not been yet considered.

  18. Functional and structural responses to marine urbanisation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayer-Pinto, M.; Cole, V. J.; Johnston, E. L.; Bugnot, A.; Hurst, H.; Airoldi, L.; Glasby, T. M.; Dafforn, K. A.

    2018-01-01

    Urban areas have broad ecological footprints with complex impacts on natural systems. In coastal areas, growing populations are advancing their urban footprint into the ocean through the construction of seawalls and other built infrastructure. While we have some understanding of how urbanisation might drive functional change in terrestrial ecosystems, coastal systems have been largely overlooked. This study is one of the first to directly assess how changes in diversity relate to changes in ecosystem properties and functions (e.g. productivity, filtration rates) of artificial and natural habitats in one of the largest urbanised estuaries in the world, Sydney Harbour. We complemented our surveys with an extensive literature search. We found large and important differences in the community structure and function between artificial and natural coastal habitats. However, differences in diversity and abundance of organisms do not necessarily match observed functional changes. The abundance and composition of important functional groups differed among habitats with rocky shores having 40% and 70% more grazers than seawalls or pilings, respectively. In contrast, scavengers were approximately 8 times more abundant on seawalls than on pilings or rocky shores and algae were more diverse on natural rocky shores and seawalls than on pilings. Our results confirm previous findings in the literature. Oysters were more abundant on pilings than on rocky shores, but were also smaller. Interestingly, these differences in oyster populations did not affect in situ filtration rates between habitats. Seawalls were the most invaded habitats while pilings supported greater secondary productivity than other habitats. This study highlights the complexity of the diversity-function relationship and responses to ocean sprawl in coastal systems. Importantly, we showed that functional properties should be considered independently from structural change if we are to design and manage artificial

  19. Geometrical scaling in charm structure function ratios

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Boroun, G.R.; Rezaei, B.

    2014-01-01

    By using a Laplace-transform technique, we solve the next-to-leading-order master equation for charm production and derive a compact formula for the ratio R c =F L cc ¯ /F 2 cc ¯ , which is useful for extracting the charm structure function from the reduced charm cross section, in particular, at DESY HERA, at small x. Our results show that this ratio is independent of x at small x. In this method of determining the ratios, we apply geometrical scaling in charm production in deep inelastic scattering (DIS). Our analysis shows that the renormalization scales have a sizable impact on the ratio R c at high Q 2 . Our results for the ratio of the charm structure functions are in a good agreement with some phenomenological models

  20. Phosphatidylinositol 4-kinases: Function, structure, and inhibition

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Boura, Evzen; Nencka, Radim

    2015-01-01

    The phosphatidylinositol 4-kinases (PI4Ks) synthesize phosphatidylinositol 4-phosphate (PI4P), a key member of the phosphoinositide family. PI4P defines the membranes of Golgi and trans-Golgi network (TGN) and regulates trafficking to and from the Golgi. Humans have two type II PI4Ks (α and β) and two type III enzymes (α and β). Recently, the crystal structures were solved for both type II and type III kinase revealing atomic details of their function. Importantly, the type III PI4Ks are hijacked by +RNA viruses to create so-called membranous web, an extensively phosphorylated and modified membrane system dedicated to their replication. Therefore, selective and potent inhibitors of PI4Ks have been developed as potential antiviral agents. Here we focus on the structure and function of PI4Ks and their potential in human medicine

  1. Phosphatidylinositol 4-kinases: Function, structure, and inhibition

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Boura, Evzen, E-mail: boura@uochb.cas.cz; Nencka, Radim, E-mail: nencka@uochb.cas.cz

    2015-10-01

    The phosphatidylinositol 4-kinases (PI4Ks) synthesize phosphatidylinositol 4-phosphate (PI4P), a key member of the phosphoinositide family. PI4P defines the membranes of Golgi and trans-Golgi network (TGN) and regulates trafficking to and from the Golgi. Humans have two type II PI4Ks (α and β) and two type III enzymes (α and β). Recently, the crystal structures were solved for both type II and type III kinase revealing atomic details of their function. Importantly, the type III PI4Ks are hijacked by +RNA viruses to create so-called membranous web, an extensively phosphorylated and modified membrane system dedicated to their replication. Therefore, selective and potent inhibitors of PI4Ks have been developed as potential antiviral agents. Here we focus on the structure and function of PI4Ks and their potential in human medicine.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-04-01

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

  3. Theoretical analysis of polarized structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Altarelli, G.; ); Ball, R.D.; Forte, S.; Ridolfi, G.

    1998-01-01

    We review the analysis of polarized structure function data using perturbative QCD and NLO We use the most recent experimental data to obtain updated results for polarized parton distributions, first moments and the strong coupling. We also discuss several theoretical issues involving in this analysis and in the interpretation of its results. Finally, we compare our results with other similar analyses in the recent literature. (author)

  4. Theoretical Analysis of Polarized Structure Functions

    CERN Document Server

    Altarelli, Guido; Forte, Stefano; Ridolfi, G

    1998-01-01

    We review the analysis of polarized structure function data using perturbative QCD at next-to-leading order. We use the most recent experimental data to obtain updated results for polarized parton distributions, first moments and the strong coupling. We also discuss several theoretical issues involved in this analysis and in the interpretation of its results. Finally, we compare our results with other similar analyses in the recent literature.

  5. Ecosocial System: Structure, Development Laws and Functioning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. I. Alekseev

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper substantiates necessity to develop a unified system of socio-ecological knowledge. Ecosophy being a forming component of dialectic-materialistic philosophy has been proposed as such system. Structure, development laws and functioning of eco-social system are considered as a part of ecosophy theory. Standard laws and ecological principles being widely recognized by ecologically orientated theorists are stated in the paper.

  6. Neuropsychological functioning and brain structure in schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crespo-Facorro, Benedicto; Barbadillo, Laura; Pelayo-Terán, José Maria; Rodríguez-Sánchez, José Manuel

    2007-08-01

    Cognitive deficits are core features of schizophrenia that are already evident at early phases of the illness. The study of specific relationships between cognition and brain structure might provide valuable clues about neural basis of schizophrenia and its phenomenology. The aim of this article was to review the most consistent findings of the studies exploring the relationships between cognitive deficits and brain anomalies in schizophrenia. Besides several important methodological shortcomings to bear in mind before drawing any consistent conclusion from the revised literature, we have attempted to systematically summarize these findings. Thus, this review has revealed that whole brain volume tends to positively correlate with a range of cognitive domains in healthy volunteers and female patients. An association between prefrontal morphological characteristics and general inability to control behaviour seems to be present in schizophrenia patients. Parahippocampal volume is related to semantic cognitive functions. Thalamic anomalies have been associated with executive deficits specifically in patients. Available evidence on the relationship between cognitive functions and cerebellar structure is still contradictory. Nonetheless, a larger cerebellum appears to be associated with higher IQ in controls and in female patients. Enlarged ventricles, including lateral and third ventricles, are associated with deficits in attention, executive and premorbid cognitive functioning in patients. Several of these reported findings seem to be counterintuitive according to neural basis of cognitive functioning drawn from animal, lesion, and functional imaging investigations. Therefore, there is still a great need for more methodologically stringent investigations that would help in the advance of our understanding of the cognition/brain structure relationships in schizophrenia.

  7. Industrial entrepreneurial network: Structural and functional analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Medvedeva, M. A.; Davletbaev, R. H.; Berg, D. B.; Nazarova, J. J.; Parusheva, S. S.

    2016-12-01

    Structure and functioning of two model industrial entrepreneurial networks are investigated in the present paper. One of these networks is forming when implementing an integrated project and consists of eight agents, which interact with each other and external environment. The other one is obtained from the municipal economy and is based on the set of the 12 real business entities. Analysis of the networks is carried out on the basis of the matrix of mutual payments aggregated over the certain time period. The matrix is created by the methods of experimental economics. Social Network Analysis (SNA) methods and instruments were used in the present research. The set of basic structural characteristics was investigated: set of quantitative parameters such as density, diameter, clustering coefficient, different kinds of centrality, and etc. They were compared with the random Bernoulli graphs of the corresponding size and density. Discovered variations of random and entrepreneurial networks structure are explained by the peculiarities of agents functioning in production network. Separately, were identified the closed exchange circuits (cyclically closed contours of graph) forming an autopoietic (self-replicating) network pattern. The purpose of the functional analysis was to identify the contribution of the autopoietic network pattern in its gross product. It was found that the magnitude of this contribution is more than 20%. Such value allows using of the complementary currency in order to stimulate economic activity of network agents.

  8. EFFECTIVE HYPERFINE-STRUCTURE FUNCTIONS OF AMMONIA

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Augustovičová, L.; Soldán, P.; Špirko, V., E-mail: spirko@marge.uochb.cas.cz [Charles University in Prague, Faculty of Mathematics and Physics, Department of Chemical Physics and Optics, Ke Karlovu 3, CZ-12116 Prague 2 (Czech Republic)

    2016-06-20

    The hyperfine structure of the rotation-inversion ( v {sub 2} = 0{sup +}, 0{sup −}, 1{sup +}, 1{sup −}) states of the {sup 14}NH{sub 3} and {sup 15}NH{sub 3} ammonia isotopomers is rationalized in terms of effective (ro-inversional) hyperfine-structure (hfs) functions. These are determined by fitting to available experimental data using the Hougen’s effective hyperfine-structure Hamiltonian within the framework of the non-rigid inverter theory. Involving only a moderate number of mass independent fitting parameters, the fitted hfs functions provide a fairly close reproduction of a large majority of available experimental data, thus evidencing adequacy of these functions for reliable prediction. In future experiments, this may help us derive spectroscopic constants of observed inversion and rotation-inversion transitions deperturbed from hyperfine effects. The deperturbed band centers of ammonia come to the forefront of fundamental physics especially as the probes of a variable proton-to-electron mass ratio.

  9. Multiscale Persistent Functions for Biomolecular Structure Characterization

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Xia, Kelin [Nanyang Technological University (Singapore). Division of Mathematical Sciences, School of Physical, Mathematical Sciences and School of Biological Sciences; Li, Zhiming [Central China Normal University, Wuhan (China). Key Laboratory of Quark and Lepton Physics (MOE) and Institute of Particle Physics; Mu, Lin [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Computer Science and Mathematics Division

    2017-11-02

    Here in this paper, we introduce multiscale persistent functions for biomolecular structure characterization. The essential idea is to combine our multiscale rigidity functions (MRFs) with persistent homology analysis, so as to construct a series of multiscale persistent functions, particularly multiscale persistent entropies, for structure characterization. To clarify the fundamental idea of our method, the multiscale persistent entropy (MPE) model is discussed in great detail. Mathematically, unlike the previous persistent entropy (Chintakunta et al. in Pattern Recognit 48(2):391–401, 2015; Merelli et al. in Entropy 17(10):6872–6892, 2015; Rucco et al. in: Proceedings of ECCS 2014, Springer, pp 117–128, 2016), a special resolution parameter is incorporated into our model. Various scales can be achieved by tuning its value. Physically, our MPE can be used in conformational entropy evaluation. More specifically, it is found that our method incorporates in it a natural classification scheme. This is achieved through a density filtration of an MRF built from angular distributions. To further validate our model, a systematical comparison with the traditional entropy evaluation model is done. Additionally, it is found that our model is able to preserve the intrinsic topological features of biomolecular data much better than traditional approaches, particularly for resolutions in the intermediate range. Moreover, by comparing with traditional entropies from various grid sizes, bond angle-based methods and a persistent homology-based support vector machine method (Cang et al. in Mol Based Math Biol 3:140–162, 2015), we find that our MPE method gives the best results in terms of average true positive rate in a classic protein structure classification test. More interestingly, all-alpha and all-beta protein classes can be clearly separated from each other with zero error only in our model. Finally, a special protein structure index (PSI) is proposed, for the first

  10. Structure functions of nucleons and nuclei

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bentz, Wolfgang; Ito, Takuya [Department of Physics, Tokai University, Kanagawa (Japan); Cloet, Ian [Department of Physics, University of Washington, Seattle (United States); Thomas, Anthony [Jefferson Lab., Newport News, VA (United States); Yazaki, Koichi [RIKEN, Wako-shi, Saitama (Japan)

    2009-07-01

    We use an effective chiral quark theory to calculate the quark distributions and structure functions of nucleons and nuclei. The description of the single nucleon is based on the Faddeev framework, and nuclear systems are described in the mean field approximation. Particular amphasis is put on the prediction of the polarized EMC effect in nuclei, and on applications to deep inelastic neutrino-nucleus scattering. Concerning the polarized EMC effect, we discuss the quenching of the quark spin sum in nuclei and its implications for the spin dependent nuclear structure functions, and present results for several nuclei where an experimental observation is feasible. Concerning the case of deep inelastic neutrino-nucleus scattering, we estimate the effect of medium modifications of the quark distribution functions on the measured cross sections, and discuss an interesting resolution of the so called NuTeV anomaly. Finally, we discuss extensions of our model to describe fragmentation functions for semi-inclusive processes. The connection between our effective quark model description and the jet model of Field and Feynman is discussed.

  11. Threshold resummation of the structure function FL

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moch, S.; Vogt, A.

    2009-02-01

    The behaviour of the quark coefficient function for the longitudinal structure function F L in deepinelastic scattering is investigated for large values of the Bjorken variable x. We combine a highly plausible conjecture on the large-x limit of the physical evolution kernel for this quantity with our explicit three-loop results to derive the coefficients of the three leading large-x logarithms, α s n ln 2n-1-k (1-x), k=1,2,3, to all orders in the strong coupling constant α s . Corresponding results are derived for the non-C F part of the gluon coefficient function suppressed by a factor 1-x, and for the analogous subleading (1-x)ln k (1-x) contributions in the quark case. Our results appear to indicate an obstacle for an exponentiation with a higher logarithmic accuracy. (orig.)

  12. Structural and regulatory functions of keratins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Magin, Thomas M.; Vijayaraj, Preethi; Leube, Rudolf E.

    2007-01-01

    The diversity of epithelial functions is reflected by the expression of distinct keratin pairs that are responsible to protect epithelial cells against mechanical stress and to act as signaling platforms. The keratin cytoskeleton integrates these functions by forming a supracellular scaffold that connects at desmosomal cell-cell adhesions. Multiple human diseases and murine knockouts in which the integrity of this system is destroyed testify to its importance as a mechanical stabilizer in certain epithelia. Yet, surprisingly little is known about the precise mechanisms responsible for assembly and disease pathology. In addition to these structural aspects of keratin function, experimental evidence accumulating in recent years has led to a much more complex view of the keratin cytoskeleton. Distinct keratins emerge as highly dynamic scaffolds in different settings and contribute to cell size determination, translation control, proliferation, cell type-specific organelle transport, malignant transformation and various stress responses. All of these properties are controlled by highly complex patterns of phosphorylation and molecular associations

  13. 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. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Evolution of CRISPs associated with toxicoferan-reptilian venom and mammalian reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sunagar, Kartik; Johnson, Warren E; O'Brien, Stephen J; Vasconcelos, Vítor; Antunes, Agostinho

    2012-07-01

    Cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRISPs) are glycoproteins found exclusively in vertebrates and have broad diversified functions. They are hypothesized to play important roles in mammalian reproduction and in reptilian venom, where they disrupt homeostasis of the prey through several mechanisms, including among others, blockage of cyclic nucleotide-gated and voltage-gated ion channels and inhibition of smooth muscle contraction. We evaluated the molecular evolution of CRISPs in toxicoferan reptiles at both nucleotide and protein levels relative to their nonvenomous mammalian homologs. We show that the evolution of CRISP gene in these reptiles is significantly influenced by positive selection and in snakes (ω = 3.84) more than in lizards (ω = 2.33), whereas mammalian CRISPs were under strong negative selection (CRISP1 = 0.55, CRISP2 = 0.40, and CRISP3 = 0.68). The use of ancestral sequence reconstruction, mapping of mutations on the three-dimensional structure, and detailed evaluation of selection pressures suggests that the toxicoferan CRISPs underwent accelerated evolution aided by strong positive selection and directional mutagenesis, whereas their mammalian homologs are constrained by negative selection. Gene and protein-level selection analyses identified 41 positively selected sites in snakes and 14 sites in lizards. Most of these sites are located on the molecular surface (nearly 76% in snakes and 79% in lizards), whereas the backbone of the protein retains a highly conserved structural scaffold. Nearly 46% of the positively selected sites occur in the cysteine-rich domain of the protein. This directional mutagenesis, where the hotspots of mutations are found on the molecular surface and functional domains of the protein, acts as a diversifying mechanism for the exquisite biological targeting of CRISPs in toxicoferan reptiles. Finally, our analyses suggest that the evolution of toxicoferan-CRISP venoms might have been influenced by the specific predatory

  15. Experimental Study on the comparison of antibacterial and antioxidant effects between the Bee Venom and Sweet Bee Venom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joong chul An

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Objectives : This study was conducted to compare antibacterial activities and free radical scavenging activity between the Bee Venom and Sweet Bee Venom in which the allergy-causing enzyme is removed. Methods : To evaluate antibacterial activities of the test samples, gram negative E. coli and gram positive St. aureus were compared using the paper disc method. For comparison of the antioxidant effects, DPPH (1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl free radical scavenging assay and Thiobarbituric Acid Reactive Substances (TBARS assay were conducted. Results : 1. Antibacterial activity against gram negative E. coli was greater in the Sweet Bee Venom group than the Bee Venom group. 2. Antibacterial activity against gram positive St. aureus was similar between the Bee Venom and Sweet Bee Venom groups. 3. DPPH free radical scavenging activity of the Bee Venom group showed 2.8 times stronger than that of the Sweet Bee Venom group. 4. Inhibition of lipid peroxidation of the Bee Venom group showed 782 times greater than that of the Sweet Bee Venom group. Conclusions : The Bee Venom group showed outstanding antibacterial activity against gram positive St. aureus, and allergen-removed Sweet Bee Venom group showed outstanding antibacterial activity against both gram negative E. coli and gram positive St. aureus. For antioxidant effects, the Bee Venom was superior over the Sweet Bee Venom and the superiority was far more apparent for lipid peroxidation.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-06-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

    In this work, we examined some biochemical and biological activities of Bothrops fonsecai venom, a pitviper endemic to southeastern Brazil, and assessed their neutralization by commercial bothropic antivenom (CAv). Cross-reactivity of venom with CAv was also assessed by immunoblotting and size-exclusion high performance chromatography (SE-HPLC). Bothrops fonsecai venom had PLA 2 , proteolytic and esterase activities that were neutralized to varying extents by venom:antivenom ratios of 5:1 and 5:2 (PLA 2 and esterase activities) or not significantly by either venom:antivenom ratio (proteolytic activity). The minimum hemorrhagic dose (69.2μg) was totally neutralized by both ratios. Clotting time in rat citrated plasma was 33±10.5s (mean±SD; n=5) and was completely neutralized by a 5:2 ratio. Edema formation was dose-dependent (1-30μg/site) and significantly inhibited by both ratios. Venom (10-300μg/mL) caused neuromuscular blockade in extensor digitorum longus preparations; this blockade was inhibited best by a 5:2 ratio. Venom caused myonecrosis and creatine kinase release in vivo (gastrocnemius muscle) and in vitro (extensor digitorum longus) that was effectively neutralized by both venom:antivenom ratios. Immunoblotting showed that venom components of ~25-100kDa interacted with CAv. SE-HPLC profiles for venom incubated with CAv or specific anti-B. fonsecai antivenom raised in rabbits (SAv) indicated that CAv had a higher binding capacity than SAv, whereas SAv had higher affinity than CAv. These findings indicate that B. fonsecai venom contains various activities that are neutralized to different extents by CAv and suggest that CAv could be used to treat envenoming by B. fonsecai. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  18. [Insect venom allergies : Update 2016 for otorhinolaryngologists].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klimek, L; Dippold, N; Sperl, A

    2016-12-01

    Due to the increasing incidence of hymenoptera venom allergies and the potentially life-threatening reactions, it is important for otolaryngologists working in allergology to have an understanding of modern diagnostic and treatment standards for this allergic disease. Molecular diagnosis with recombinant single allergens from bee and wasp venom components improves the diagnostics of insect venom allergies, particularly in patients with double-positive extract-based test results. Detection of specific sensitizations to bee or wasp venom enables double sensitizations to be better distinguished from cross-reactivity. Based on patient history and test results, the patient is initially advised on avoidance strategies and prescribed an emergency medication kit. Then, the indication for allergen-specific immunotherapy (AIT) is evaluated. The dose-increase phase can be performed using conventional, cluster, rush, or ultra-rush schedules, whereby rapid desensitization (rush AIT) performed in the clinic seems to be particularly effective as initial treatment.

  19. [Therapy control of specific hymenoptera venom allergy].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aust, W; Wichmann, G; Dietz, A

    2010-12-01

    In Germany anaphylactic reactions after insect stings are mostly caused by honey bee (Apis mellifera) and wasp (Vespula vulgaris, Vespula germanica). In the majority of cases venom immunotherapy is a successful therapy and protects patients from recurrent systemic anaphylactic reaction. In some patients persistent severe reactions after insect sting can even occur in spite of venom therapy, as a sign of therapy failure. It is important to identify these patients, who do not benefit from venom immunotherapy, in an early stage of therapy. In this case dose rate of venom immunotherapy must be adjusted for a successful therapy outcome. Up to now skin prick tests, specific IgE-antibodies and in vitro diagnostics are not suitable for detecting therapy failure. Patients with treatment failure can be diagnosed by insect sting test and almost all of them will become fully protected by increasing the maintenance dose. © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.

  20. Radiating sterilization of the venom of snake

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abiyev, H.A.; Topchiyeva, Sh.A.; Rustamov, V.R.

    2006-01-01

    Full text: Water solutions of venoms are unstable and they lose toxicity in some day. Snake venoms inactivate under action of some physical factors: the UV-irradiation, x-rays beams. The purpose of the present work was sterilization of venom Vipera lebetina obtusa under influence of small dozes γ-radiations. Object of research was integral venom of adult individuals. Transcaucasian viper, and also the water solutions of venom irradiated with small dozes scale of radiation. An irradiation of venom carried out to radioisotope installation 60NI. For experiment tests of dry venom, and also their water solutions have been taken. Water solutions of venom have been subjected -radiation up to dozes 1.35, 2.7, 4.05, 5.4 kGr simultaneously dry venom of vipers was exposed -radiation before absorption of a doze 5.4 kGr. In comparative aspect action scale of radiation on ultra-violet spectra of absorption of venom was studied. Ultra-violet spectra venom have been taken off on device Specord UV-VIS. In 12 months after an irradiation spectra of absorption of venom have been repeatedly taken off. In spectra irradiated dry and solutions of venom new maxima of absorption have been revealed in the field of 285 nm and 800 nm describing change of toxicity. It is shown, that the increase in absorption of a doze of radiation occurs decrease of intensity of strips of absorption reduction of intensity of absorption.It is revealed at 260 and 300 nm testifying to course of biochemical reactions of separate enzymes zootoxins. It is necessary to note, that at comparison of intensity of absorption of control samples of poison with irradiated up to dozes 1.35 kGr it has not been revealed essential changes. The subsequent increase in a doze scale of radiation up to 2.7, 4.05, 5.4 kGr promotes proportional reduction of intensity of the absorption, describing toxicity of snake venom. At repeated (later 12 months) measurement of the irradiated water solutions of venom are not revealed changes in

  1. Crotacetin, a novel snake venom C-type lectin, is homolog of convulxin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Rádis-Baptista

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Snake venom (sv C-type lectins encompass a group of hemorrhagic toxins, which are able to interfere with hemostasis. They share significant similarity in their primary structures with C-type lectins of other animals, and also present a conserved carbohydrate recognition domain (CRD. A very well studied sv C-type lectin is the heterodimeric toxin, convulxin (CVX, from the venoms of South American rattlesnakes, Crotalus durissus terrificus and C. d. cascavella. It consists of two subunits, alfa (CVXalpha , 13.9 kDa and beta (CVXbeta , 12.6 kDa, joined by inter and intra-chain disulfide bounds, and is arranged in a tetrameric alpha4beta4 conformation. Convulxin is able to activate platelet and induce their aggregation by acting via p62/GPVI collagen receptor. Several cDNA precursors, homolog of CVX subunits, were cloned by PCR homology screening. As determined by computational analysis, one of them, named crotacetin beta subunit, was predicted as a polypeptide with a tridimensional conformation very similar to other subunits of convulxin-like snake toxins. Crotacetin was purified from C. durissus venoms by gel permeation and reverse phase high performance liquid chromatography. The heterodimeric crotacetin is expressed in the venoms of several C. durissus subspecies, but it is prevalent in the venom of C. durissus cascavella. As inferred from homology modeling, crotacetin induces platelet aggregation but noticeably exhibits antimicrobial activity against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria.

  2. Venom Concentrations and Clotting Factor Levels in a Prospective Cohort of Russell's Viper Bites with Coagulopathy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geoffrey K Isbister

    Full Text Available Russell's viper envenoming is a major problem in South Asia and causes venom induced consumption coagulopathy. This study aimed to investigate the kinetics and dynamics of venom and clotting function in Russell's viper envenoming.In a prospective cohort of 146 patients with Russell's viper envenoming, we measured venom concentrations, international normalised ratio [INR], prothrombin time (PT, activated partial thromboplastin time (aPTT, coagulation factors I, II, V, VII, VIII, IX and X, and von Willebrand factor antigen. The median age was 39 y (16-82 y and 111 were male. The median peak INR was 6.8 (interquartile range [IQR]: 3.7 to >13, associated with low fibrinogen [median,3 at 6 h post-antivenom but had reduced to <2, by 24 h. The aPTT had also returned to close to normal (<50 sec at 24 h. Factor VII, VIII and IX levels were unusually high pre-antivenom, median peak concentrations of 393%, 307% and 468% respectively. Pre-antivenom venom concentrations and the INR (r = 0.20, p = 0.02 and aPTT (r = 0.19, p = 0.03 were correlated (non-parametric Spearman analysis.Russell's viper coagulopathy results in prolonged aPTT, INR, low fibrinogen, factors V, VIII and X which recover over 48 h. Severity of clotting abnormalities was associated with venom concentrations.

  3. Psychedelics Promote Structural and Functional Neural Plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Calvin Ly

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Summary: Atrophy of neurons in the prefrontal cortex (PFC plays a key role in the pathophysiology of depression and related disorders. The ability to promote both structural and functional plasticity in the PFC has been hypothesized to underlie the fast-acting antidepressant properties of the dissociative anesthetic ketamine. Here, we report that, like ketamine, serotonergic psychedelics are capable of robustly increasing neuritogenesis and/or spinogenesis both in vitro and in vivo. These changes in neuronal structure are accompanied by increased synapse number and function, as measured by fluorescence microscopy and electrophysiology. The structural changes induced by psychedelics appear to result from stimulation of the TrkB, mTOR, and 5-HT2A signaling pathways and could possibly explain the clinical effectiveness of these compounds. Our results underscore the therapeutic potential of psychedelics and, importantly, identify several lead scaffolds for medicinal chemistry efforts focused on developing plasticity-promoting compounds as safe, effective, and fast-acting treatments for depression and related disorders. : Ly et al. demonstrate that psychedelic compounds such as LSD, DMT, and DOI increase dendritic arbor complexity, promote dendritic spine growth, and stimulate synapse formation. These cellular effects are similar to those produced by the fast-acting antidepressant ketamine and highlight the potential of psychedelics for treating depression and related disorders. Keywords: neural plasticity, psychedelic, spinogenesis, synaptogenesis, depression, LSD, DMT, ketamine, noribogaine, MDMA

  4. Psychedelics Promote Structural and Functional Neural Plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ly, Calvin; Greb, Alexandra C; Cameron, Lindsay P; Wong, Jonathan M; Barragan, Eden V; Wilson, Paige C; Burbach, Kyle F; Soltanzadeh Zarandi, Sina; Sood, Alexander; Paddy, Michael R; Duim, Whitney C; Dennis, Megan Y; McAllister, A Kimberley; Ori-McKenney, Kassandra M; Gray, John A; Olson, David E

    2018-06-12

    Atrophy of neurons in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) plays a key role in the pathophysiology of depression and related disorders. The ability to promote both structural and functional plasticity in the PFC has been hypothesized to underlie the fast-acting antidepressant properties of the dissociative anesthetic ketamine. Here, we report that, like ketamine, serotonergic psychedelics are capable of robustly increasing neuritogenesis and/or spinogenesis both in vitro and in vivo. These changes in neuronal structure are accompanied by increased synapse number and function, as measured by fluorescence microscopy and electrophysiology. The structural changes induced by psychedelics appear to result from stimulation of the TrkB, mTOR, and 5-HT2A signaling pathways and could possibly explain the clinical effectiveness of these compounds. Our results underscore the therapeutic potential of psychedelics and, importantly, identify several lead scaffolds for medicinal chemistry efforts focused on developing plasticity-promoting compounds as safe, effective, and fast-acting treatments for depression and related disorders. Copyright © 2018 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  6. The structure and function of presynaptic endosomes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jähne, Sebastian, E-mail: sebastian.jaehne1@stud.uni-goettingen.de [Department of Neuro- and Sensory Physiology, University of Göttingen Medical Center, Cluster of Excellence Nanoscale Microscopy and Molecular Physiology of the Brain, Humboldtallee 23, 37073 Göttingen (Germany); International Max Planck Research School for Neurosciences, 37077 Göttingen (Germany); Rizzoli, Silvio O. [Department of Neuro- and Sensory Physiology, University of Göttingen Medical Center, Cluster of Excellence Nanoscale Microscopy and Molecular Physiology of the Brain, Humboldtallee 23, 37073 Göttingen (Germany); Helm, Martin S., E-mail: martin.helm@med.uni-goettingen.de [Department of Neuro- and Sensory Physiology, University of Göttingen Medical Center, Cluster of Excellence Nanoscale Microscopy and Molecular Physiology of the Brain, Humboldtallee 23, 37073 Göttingen (Germany); International Max Planck Research School for Molecular Biology, 37077 Göttingen (Germany)

    2015-07-15

    The function of endosomes and of endosome-like structures in the presynaptic compartment is still controversial. This is in part due to the absence of a consensus on definitions and markers for these compartments. Synaptic endosomes are sometimes seen as stable organelles, permanently present in the synapse. Alternatively, they are seen as short-lived intermediates in synaptic vesicle recycling, arising from the endocytosis of large vesicles from the plasma membrane, or from homotypic fusion of small vesicles. In addition, the potential function of the endosome is largely unknown in the synapse. Some groups have proposed that the endosome is involved in the sorting of synaptic vesicle proteins, albeit others have produced data that deny this possibility. In this review, we present the existing evidence for synaptic endosomes, we discuss their potential functions, and we highlight frequent technical pitfalls in the analysis of this elusive compartment. We also sketch a roadmap to definitely determine the role of synaptic endosomes for the synaptic vesicle cycle. Finally, we propose a common definition of synaptic endosome-like structures.

  7. The structure and function of presynaptic endosomes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jähne, Sebastian; Rizzoli, Silvio O.; Helm, Martin S.

    2015-01-01

    The function of endosomes and of endosome-like structures in the presynaptic compartment is still controversial. This is in part due to the absence of a consensus on definitions and markers for these compartments. Synaptic endosomes are sometimes seen as stable organelles, permanently present in the synapse. Alternatively, they are seen as short-lived intermediates in synaptic vesicle recycling, arising from the endocytosis of large vesicles from the plasma membrane, or from homotypic fusion of small vesicles. In addition, the potential function of the endosome is largely unknown in the synapse. Some groups have proposed that the endosome is involved in the sorting of synaptic vesicle proteins, albeit others have produced data that deny this possibility. In this review, we present the existing evidence for synaptic endosomes, we discuss their potential functions, and we highlight frequent technical pitfalls in the analysis of this elusive compartment. We also sketch a roadmap to definitely determine the role of synaptic endosomes for the synaptic vesicle cycle. Finally, we propose a common definition of synaptic endosome-like structures

  8. Catchment Classification: Connecting Climate, Structure and Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sawicz, K. A.; Wagener, T.; Sivapalan, M.; Troch, P. A.; Carrillo, G. A.

    2010-12-01

    Hydrology does not yet possess a generally accepted catchment classification framework. Such a classification framework needs to: [1] give names to things, i.e. the main classification step, [2] permit transfer of information, i.e. regionalization of information, [3] permit development of generalizations, i.e. to develop new theory, and [4] provide a first order environmental change impact assessment, i.e., the hydrologic implications of climate, land use and land cover change. One strategy is to create a catchment classification framework based on the notion of catchment functions (partitioning, storage, and release). Results of an empirical study presented here connects climate and structure to catchment function (in the form of select hydrologic signatures), based on analyzing over 300 US catchments. Initial results indicate a wide assortment of signature relationships with properties of climate, geology, and vegetation. The uncertainty in the different regionalized signatures varies widely, and therefore there is variability in the robustness of classifying ungauged basins. This research provides insight into the controls of hydrologic behavior of a catchment, and enables a classification framework applicable to gauged and ungauged across the study domain. This study sheds light on what we can expect to achieve in mapping climate, structure and function in a top-down manner. Results of this study complement work done using a bottom-up physically-based modeling framework to generalize this approach (Carrillo et al., this session).

  9. FACTOR STRUCTURE OF FUNCTIONAL CAPABILITIES OF BODYBUILDERS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Predrag Milenović

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available It is evident that researches in the fi eld of kineziology and sports sciences on the topic of body-building here are very rare mainly and probably because of its place in the system of hyerarchy of sports. Lack of interest in body-building and its insuffi cient popularization springs probably, among other things, from its different interpretation and, according to some people, from its ultimate goals which are not justifi ed by many. Others, experts from the fi eld of body-building, starting from the basic principles of its exercising point out its numerous positive characteristics and sides. Undoubtedly, characteristics of functional capabilities of sportspeople are specifi c for each sport or discipline. In body-building the functional sphere is bordered and defi ned by the nature of the sport’s activity itself, as well as by genetics and internal and external factors in a very complex training process of a bodu-builder. The goal of this research was determining the structure of the functional sphere of a body-builder. It was performed on the sample of 30 selected sportsmen, body-builders, of chronological age between 17 and 19 ( 6 months, members of the Sports' Club Strength ''Leskovac'', the Weight Lifters' Club '' Dubočica'' and the Body-building Club '' Dubočica'' from Leskovac. All the examiees have been submitted to training processes during a period longer than a year. For the purpose of determining the structure of the morphological sphere the Factor Analysis has been applied. Based on the data from the matrix of the Factor Structure the isolated factors can be interpreted in the following manner: The fi rst isolated factor in the sphere of applied functional variables is best defi ned by the variable of pulse under stress (FPUOP and the variable of maximum Oxygen consumption in liters per minute (FOLM. This isolated factor can be defi ned as a dimension of the transportation system of Oxygen. The second isolated factor in the

  10. Snake evolution and prospecting of snake venom

    OpenAIRE

    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 much more flexible than previously thought. But it also underscores the potential use of the many different types of snake venom toxins that could be screened for use against human disorders. And most...

  11. Summary of the Photon Structure Functions - Measurements at LEP

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Przybycien, M.

    2002-01-01

    The present status of the photon structure functions measurements at LEP is discussed. The short introduction to the kinematics and theoretical framework of the structure functions measurements at LEP is given first. Then follow presentations of the most important measurements, ranging from the QED photon structure function, through the hadronic structure functions of real and virtual photons, and at the end the first measurement of the electron structure function is shown. (author)

  12. Peptidomic analysis of the venom of the solitary bee Xylocopa appendiculata circumvolans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kazuma, Kohei; Ando, Kenji; Nihei, Ken-Ichi; Wang, Xiaoyu; Rangel, Marisa; Franzolin, Marcia Regina; Mori-Yasumoto, Kanami; Sekita, Setsuko; Kadowaki, Makoto; Satake, Motoyoshi; Konno, Katsuhiro

    2017-01-01

    Among the hymenopteran insect venoms, those from social wasps and bees - such as honeybee, hornets and paper wasps - have been well documented. Their venoms are composed of a number of peptides and proteins and used for defending their nests and themselves from predators. In contrast, the venoms of solitary wasps and bees have not been the object of further research. In case of solitary bees, only major peptide components in a few venoms have been addressed. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to explore the peptide component profile of the venom from the solitary bee Xylocopa appendiculata circumvolans by peptidomic analysis with using LC-MS. A reverse-phase HPLC connected to ESI-OrbiTrap MS was used for LC-MS. On-line mass fingerprinting was made from TIC, and data-dependent tandem mass spectrometry gave MSMS spectra. A major peptide component was isolated by reverse-phase HPLC by conventional way, and its sequence was determined by Edman degradation, which was finally corroborated by solid phase synthesis. Using the synthetic specimen, biological activities (antimicrobial activity, mast cell devaluation, hemolysis, leishmanicidal activity) and pore formation in artificial lipid bilayer were evaluated. On-line mass fingerprinting revealed that the crude venom contained 124 components. MS/MS analysis gave 75 full sequences of the peptide components. Most of these are related to the major and novel peptide, xylopin. Its sequence, GFVALLKKLPLILKHLH-NH 2 , has characteristic features of linear cationic α-helical peptides; rich in hydrophobic and basic amino acids with no disulfide bond, and accordingly, it can be predicted to adopt an amphipathic α-helix secondary structure. In biological evaluation, xylopin exhibited broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity, and moderate mast cell degranulation and leishmanicidal activities, but showed virtually no hemolytic activity. Additionally, the peptide was able to incorporate pores in artificial lipid bilayers of

  13. 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.

  14. Viperous fangs: development and evolution of the venom canal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zahradnicek, Oldrich; Horacek, Ivan; Tucker, Abigail S

    2008-01-01

    Fangs are specialised long teeth that contain either a superficial groove (Gila monster, Beaded lizard, some colubrid snakes), along which the venom runs, or an enclosed canal (viperid, elapid and atractaspid), down which the venom flows inside the tooth. The fangs of viperid snakes are the most effective venom-delivery structures among vertebrates and have been the focus of scientific interests for more than 200 years. Despite this interest the questions of how the canal at the centre of the fang forms remains unresolved. Two different hypotheses have been suggested. The mainstream hypothesis claims that the venom-conducting canal develops by the invagination of the epithelial wall of the developing tooth germ. The sides of this invagination make contact and finally fuse to form the enclosed canal. The second hypothesis, known as the "brick chimney", claims the venom-conducting canal develops directly by successive dentine deposition as the tooth develops. The fang is thus built up from the tip to the base, without any folding of the tooth surface. In an attempt to cast further light on this subject the early development of the fangs was followed in a pit viper, Trimeresurus albolabris, using the expression of Sonic hedgehog (Shh). We demonstrate that the canal is indeed formed by an early folding event, resulting from an invagination of epithelial cells into the dental mesenchyme. The epithelial cells proliferate to enlarge the canal and then the cells die by apoptosis, forming an empty tube through which the poison runs. The entrance and discharge orifices at either end of the canal develop by a similar invagination but the initial width of the invagination is very different from that in the middle of the tooth, and is associated with higher proliferation. The two sides of the invaginating epithelium never come into contact, leaving the orifice open. The mechanism by which the orifices form can be likened to that observed in reptiles with an open groove along

  15. Venom On-a-Chip: A Fast and Efficient Method for Comparative Venomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zancolli, Giulia; Sanz, Libia; Calvete, Juan J; Wüster, Wolfgang

    2017-05-28

    Venom research has attracted an increasing interest in disparate fields, from drug development and pharmacology, to evolutionary biology and ecology, and rational antivenom production. Advances in "-omics" technologies have allowed the characterization of an increasing number of animal venoms, but the methodology currently available is suboptimal for large-scale comparisons of venom profiles. Here, we describe a fast, reproducible and semi-automated protocol for investigating snake venom variability, especially at the intraspecific level, using the Agilent Bioanalyzer on-chip technology. Our protocol generated a phenotype matrix which can be used for robust statistical analysis and correlations of venom variation with ecological correlates, or other extrinsic factors. We also demonstrate the ease and utility of combining on-chip technology with previously fractionated venoms for detection of specific individual toxin proteins. Our study describes a novel strategy for rapid venom discrimination and analysis of compositional variation at multiple taxonomic levels, allowing researchers to tackle evolutionary questions and unveiling the drivers of the incredible biodiversity of venoms.

  16. 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

  17. Combined Venom Gland Transcriptomic and Venom Peptidomic Analysis of the Predatory Ant Odontomachus monticola

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kohei Kazuma

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Ants (hymenoptera: Formicidae have adapted to many different environments and have become some of the most prolific and successful insects. To date, 13,258 ant species have been reported. They have been classified into 333 genera and 17 subfamilies. Except for a few Formicinae, Dolichoderinae, and members of other subfamilies, most ant species have a sting with venom. The venoms are composed of formic acid, alkaloids, hydrocarbons, amines, peptides, and proteins. Unlike the venoms of other animals such as snakes and spiders, ant venoms have seldom been analyzed comprehensively, and their compositions are not yet completely known. In this study, we used both transcriptomic and peptidomic analyses to study the composition of the venom produced by the predatory ant species Odontomachus monticola. The transcriptome analysis yielded 49,639 contigs, of which 92 encoded toxin-like peptides and proteins with 18,106,338 mapped reads. We identified six pilosulin-like peptides by transcriptomic analysis in the venom gland. Further, we found intact pilosulin-like peptide 1 and truncated pilosulin-like peptides 2 and 3 by peptidomic analysis in the venom. Our findings related to ant venom peptides and proteins may lead the way towards development and application of novel pharmaceutical and biopesticidal resources.

  18. Venom-gland transcriptome and venom proteome of the Malaysian king cobra (Ophiophagus hannah).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Choo Hock; Tan, Kae Yi; Fung, Shin Yee; Tan, Nget Hong

    2015-09-10

    The king cobra (Ophiophagus hannah) is widely distributed throughout many parts of Asia. This study aims to investigate the complexity of Malaysian Ophiophagus hannah (MOh) venom for a better understanding of king cobra venom variation and its envenoming pathophysiology. The venom gland transcriptome was investigated using the Illumina HiSeq™ platform, while the venom proteome was profiled by 1D-SDS-PAGE-nano-ESI-LCMS/MS. Transcriptomic results reveal high redundancy of toxin transcripts (3357.36 FPKM/transcript) despite small cluster numbers, implying gene duplication and diversification within restricted protein families. Among the 23 toxin families identified, three-finger toxins (3FTxs) and snake-venom metalloproteases (SVMPs) have the most diverse isoforms. These 2 toxin families are also the most abundantly transcribed, followed in descending order by phospholipases A2 (PLA2s), cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRISPs), Kunitz-type inhibitors (KUNs), and L-amino acid oxidases (LAAOs). Seventeen toxin families exhibited low mRNA expression, including hyaluronidase, DPP-IV and 5'-nucleotidase that were not previously reported in the venom-gland transcriptome of a Balinese O. hannah. On the other hand, the MOh proteome includes 3FTxs, the most abundantly expressed proteins in the venom (43 % toxin sbundance). Within this toxin family, there are 6 long-chain, 5 short-chain and 2 non-conventional 3FTx. Neurotoxins comprise the major 3FTxs in the MOh venom, consistent with rapid neuromuscular paralysis reported in systemic envenoming. The presence of toxic enzymes such as LAAOs, SVMPs and PLA2 would explain tissue inflammation and necrotising destruction in local envenoming. Dissimilarities in the subtypes and sequences between the neurotoxins of MOh and Naja kaouthia (monocled cobra) are in agreement with the poor cross-neutralization activity of N. kaouthia antivenom used against MOh venom. Besides, the presence of cobra venom factor, nerve growth factors

  19. Allergen-specific immunotherapy of Hymenoptera venom allergy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schiener, Maximilian; Graessel, Anke; Ollert, Markus

    2017-01-01

    Stings of hymenoptera can induce IgE-mediated hypersensitivity reactions in venom-allergic patients, ranging from local up to severe systemic reactions and even fatal anaphylaxis. Allergic patients' quality of life can be mainly improved by altering their immune response to tolerate the venoms...... by injecting increasing venom doses over years. This venom-specific immunotherapy is highly effective and well tolerated. However, component-resolved information about the venoms has increased in the last years. This knowledge is not only able to improve diagnostics as basis for an accurate therapy......, but was additionally used to create tools which enable the analysis of therapeutic venom extracts on a molecular level. Therefore, during the last decade the detailed knowledge of the allergen composition of hymenoptera venoms has substantially improved diagnosis and therapy of venom allergy. This review focuses...

  20. SNAKE VENOM INSTABILITY • Department of Physiology, Medical ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    preferable to desiccated samples for use in snake venom research (Bjork ... experimental results suggest that dried venom samples may be influenced by different ..... true for the commercial samples, as these are collectively pooled before ...

  1. A study of bacterial contamination of rattlesnake venom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  2. Mycobacterium chelonae infections associated with bee venom acupuncture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cho, Sun Young; Peck, Kyong Ran; Kim, Jungok; Ha, Young Eun; Kang, Cheol-In; Chung, Doo Ryeon; Lee, Nam Yong; Song, Jae-Hoon

    2014-03-01

    We report 3 cases of Mycobacterium chelonae infections after bee venom acupuncture. All were treated with antibiotics and surgery. Mycobacterium chelonae infections should be included in the differential diagnosis of chronic skin and soft tissue infections following bee venom acupuncture.

  3. Measurement of the nucleon structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gordon, B.A.; Loomis, W.A.; Pipkin, F.M.; Pordes, S.H.; Sessoms, A.L.; Shambroom, W.D.; Tao, C.; Verhey, L.J.; Wilson, R.; Anderson, H.L.; Fine, R.M.; Heisterberg, R.H.; Kinnison, W.W.; Matis, H.S.; Mo, L.W.; Myrianthopoulos, L.C.; Wright, S.C.; Francis, W.R.; Hicks, R.G.; Kirk, T.B.W.; Quirk, T.W.; Bharadwaj, V.K.; Booth, N.E.; Kirkbride, G.I.; Proudfoot, J.; Skuja, A.; Staton, M.A.; Williams, W.S.C.

    1979-01-01

    Measurements have been made of the inclusive scattering of 96, 147, and 219 GeV muons from hydrogen, and of 147 GeV muons from deuterium. Results are presented for the nucleon structure function F 2 (x,Q 2 ) [equivalentνW 2 (x,Q 2 )] for 10 2 2 . The value of F 2 rises with Q 2 at small x, and falls with Q 2 at large x, in agreement with the ideas of quantum chromodynamics. An average value of the ratio sigma/sub L//sigma/sub T/ equivalent R = 0.52 +- 0.35 has been obtained for the region 0.003 2 2 . The values of F 2 from this experiment have been combined with those from other charged-lepton scattering experiments to determine moments of the structure functions. The variation with Q 2 of these moments is used to derive values for Λ, taking into account corrections up to second order in α/sub s/. The fit to the data is very good

  4. Structural and functional intermetallics - an overview

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Varin, R.A.

    2000-01-01

    This overview presents the current status of the research and development of both structural and functional intermetallics. On the one hand, the discussion is focused on commercialization and existing industrial applications of intermetallics. Within this frame the applications of titanium aluminides (TiAl) for turbocharger rotors and exhaust valves in automotive industry are being discussed. Advances in the applications of TiAl alloys for the next generation of turbine blades in aerospace/aircraft segment are also presented. The entire spectrum of nickel and iron aluminide alloys developed commercially by the Oak Ridge national Laboratory (USA) and the examples of their application in various segments of industry are thoroughly discussed. Some inroads made in the application of directionally solidified (DS) multiphase niobium silicides (Nb 3 Si+Nb 5 Si 3 ) in situ intermetallic composites with the goal of pushing the service temperature envelope of turbine blades to ∼ 1200-1300 o C are also discussed. On the other hand, various topics in basic or curiosity driven research of titanium aluminides and trialuminides, iron aluminides and high temperature structural silicides are discussed. Some very recent findings on the improvements in fracture toughness and strength of titanium trialuminides and magnetic behaviour of unconventionally cold - worked iron aluminides are highlighted. The topic of functional intermetallics is limited to the systems must suitable for hydrogen storage applications. A perspective on the directions of future research and development of intermetallics is also provided. (author)

  5. The primate fovea: Structure, function and development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bringmann, Andreas; Syrbe, Steffen; Görner, Katja; Kacza, Johannes; Francke, Mike; Wiedemann, Peter; Reichenbach, Andreas

    2018-03-30

    A fovea is a pitted invagination in the inner retinal tissue (fovea interna) that overlies an area of photoreceptors specialized for high acuity vision (fovea externa). Although the shape of the vertebrate fovea varies considerably among the species, there are two basic types. The retina of many predatory fish, reptilians, and birds possess one (or two) convexiclivate fovea(s), while the retina of higher primates contains a concaviclivate fovea. By refraction of the incoming light, the convexiclivate fovea may function as image enlarger, focus indicator, and movement detector. By centrifugal displacement of the inner retinal layers, which increases the transparency of the central foveal tissue (the foveola), the primate fovea interna improves the quality of the image received by the central photoreceptors. In this review, we summarize ‒ with the focus on Müller cells of the human and macaque fovea ‒ data regarding the structure of the primate fovea, discuss various aspects of the optical function of the fovea, and propose a model of foveal development. The "Müller cell cone" of the foveola comprises specialized Müller cells which do not support neuronal activity but may serve optical and structural functions. In addition to the "Müller cell cone", structural stabilization of the foveal morphology may be provided by the 'z-shaped' Müller cells of the fovea walls, via exerting tractional forces onto Henle fibers. The spatial distribution of glial fibrillary acidic protein may suggest that the foveola and the Henle fiber layer are subjects to mechanical stress. During development, the foveal pit is proposed to be formed by a vertical contraction of the centralmost Müller cells. After widening of the foveal pit likely mediated by retracting astrocytes, Henle fibers are formed by horizontal contraction of Müller cell processes in the outer plexiform layer and the centripetal displacement of photoreceptors. A better understanding of the molecular, cellular

  6. Ophiophagus hannah Venom: Proteome, Components Bound by Naja kaouthia Antivenin and Neutralization by N. kaouthia Neurotoxin-Specific Human ScFv

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Witchuda Danpaiboon

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Venomous snakebites are an important health problem in tropical and subtropical countries. King cobra (Ophiophagus hannah is the largest venomous snake found in South and Southeast Asia. In this study, the O. hannah venom proteome and the venom components cross-reactive to N. kaouthia monospecific antivenin were studied. O. hannah venom consisted of 14 different protein families, including three finger toxins, phospholipases, cysteine-rich secretory proteins, cobra venom factor, muscarinic toxin, L-amino acid oxidase, hypothetical proteins, low cysteine protein, phosphodiesterase, proteases, vespryn toxin, Kunitz, growth factor activators and others (coagulation factor, endonuclease, 5’-nucleotidase. N. kaouthia antivenin recognized several functionally different O. hannah venom proteins and mediated paratherapeutic efficacy by rescuing the O. hannah envenomed mice from lethality. An engineered human ScFv specific to N. kaouthia long neurotoxin (NkLN-HuScFv cross-neutralized the O. hannah venom and extricated the O. hannah envenomed mice from death in a dose escalation manner. Homology modeling and molecular docking revealed that NkLN-HuScFv interacted with residues in loops 2 and 3 of the neurotoxins of both snake species, which are important for neuronal acetylcholine receptor binding. The data of this study are useful for snakebite treatment when and where the polyspecific antivenin is not available. Because the supply of horse-derived antivenin is limited and the preparation may cause some adverse effects in recipients, a cocktail of recombinant human ScFvs for various toxic venom components shared by different venomous snakes, exemplified by the in vitro produced NkLN-HuScFv in this study, should contribute to a possible future route for an improved alternative to the antivenins.

  7. Ophiophagus hannah venom: proteome, components bound by Naja kaouthia antivenin and neutralization by N. kaouthia neurotoxin-specific human ScFv.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danpaiboon, Witchuda; Reamtong, Onrapak; Sookrung, Nitat; Seesuay, Watee; Sakolvaree, Yuwaporn; Thanongsaksrikul, Jeeraphong; Dong-din-on, Fonthip; Srimanote, Potjanee; Thueng-in, Kanyarat; Chaicumpa, Wanpen

    2014-05-13

    Venomous snakebites are an important health problem in tropical and subtropical countries. King cobra (Ophiophagus hannah) is the largest venomous snake found in South and Southeast Asia. In this study, the O. hannah venom proteome and the venom components cross-reactive to N. kaouthia monospecific antivenin were studied. O. hannah venom consisted of 14 different protein families, including three finger toxins, phospholipases, cysteine-rich secretory proteins, cobra venom factor, muscarinic toxin, L-amino acid oxidase, hypothetical proteins, low cysteine protein, phosphodiesterase, proteases, vespryn toxin, Kunitz, growth factor activators and others (coagulation factor, endonuclease, 5'-nucleotidase). N. kaouthia antivenin recognized several functionally different O. hannah venom proteins and mediated paratherapeutic efficacy by rescuing the O. hannah envenomed mice from lethality. An engineered human ScFv specific to N. kaouthia long neurotoxin (NkLN-HuScFv) cross-neutralized the O. hannah venom and extricated the O. hannah envenomed mice from death in a dose escalation manner. Homology modeling and molecular docking revealed that NkLN-HuScFv interacted with residues in loops 2 and 3 of the neurotoxins of both snake species, which are important for neuronal acetylcholine receptor binding. The data of this study are useful for snakebite treatment when and where the polyspecific antivenin is not available. Because the supply of horse-derived antivenin is limited and the preparation may cause some adverse effects in recipients, a cocktail of recombinant human ScFvs for various toxic venom components shared by different venomous snakes, exemplified by the in vitro produced NkLN-HuScFv in this study, should contribute to a possible future route for an improved alternative to the antivenins.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-08-16

    Only few studies on snake venoms were dedicated to deeply characterize the toxin secretion of animals from the Colubridae family, despite the fact that they represent the majority of snake diversity. As a consequence, some evolutionary trends observed in venom proteins that underpinned the evolutionary histories of snake toxins were based on data from a minor parcel of the clade. Here, we investigated the proteins of the totally unknown venom from Phalotris mertensi (Dipsadinae subfamily), in order to obtain a detailed profile of its toxins and to appreciate evolutionary tendencies occurring in colubrid venoms. By means of integrated omics and functional approaches, including RNAseq, Sanger sequencing, high-resolution proteomics, recombinant protein production, and enzymatic tests, we verified an active toxic secretion containing up to 21 types of proteins. A high content of Kunitz-type proteins and C-type lectins were observed, although several enzymatic components such as metalloproteinases and an L-amino acid oxidase were also present in the venom. Interestingly, an arguable venom component of other species was demonstrated as a true venom protein and named svLIPA (snake venom acid lipase). This finding indicates the importance of checking the actual protein occurrence across species before rejecting genes suggested to code for toxins, which are relevant for the discussion about the early evolution of reptile venoms. Moreover, trends in the evolution of some toxin classes, such as simplification of metalloproteinases and rearrangements of Kunitz and Wap domains, parallel similar phenomena observed in other venomous snake families and provide a broader picture of toxin evolution. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  9. Functions and structures of eukaryotic recombination proteins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ogawa, Tomoko

    1994-01-01

    We have found that Rad51 and RecA Proteins form strikingly similar structures together with dsDNA and ATP. Their right handed helical nucleoprotein filaments extend the B-form DNA double helixes to 1.5 times in length and wind the helix. The similarity and uniqueness of their structures must reflect functional homologies between these proteins. Therefore, it is highly probable that similar recombination proteins are present in various organisms of different evolutional states. We have succeeded to clone RAD51 genes from human, mouse, chicken and fission yeast genes, and found that the homologues are widely distributed in eukaryotes. The HsRad51 and MmRad51 or ChRad51 proteins consist of 339 amino acids differing only by 4 or 12 amino acids, respectively, and highly homologous to both yeast proteins, but less so to Dmcl. All of these proteins are homologous to the region from residues 33 to 240 of RecA which was named ''homologous core. The homologous core is likely to be responsible for functions common for all of them, such as the formation of helical nucleoprotein filament that is considered to be involved in homologous pairing in the recombination reaction. The mouse gene is transcribed at a high level in thymus, spleen, testis, and ovary, at lower level in brain and at a further lower level in some other tissues. It is transcribed efficiently in recombination active tissues. A clear functional difference of Rad51 homologues from RecA was suggested by the failure of heterologous genes to complement the deficiency of Scrad51 mutants. This failure seems to reflect the absence of a compatible partner, such as ScRad52 protein in the case of ScRad51 protein, between different species. Thus, these discoveries play a role of the starting point to understand the fundamental gene targeting in mammalian cells and in gene therapy. (J.P.N.)

  10. Structure-function relationships of human meniscus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danso, Elvis K; Oinas, Joonas M T; Saarakkala, Simo; Mikkonen, Santtu; Töyräs, Juha; Korhonen, Rami K

    2017-03-01

    Biomechanical properties of human meniscus have been shown to be site-specific. However, it is not known which meniscus constituents at different depths and locations contribute to biomechanical properties obtained from indentation testing. Therefore, we investigated the composition and structure of human meniscus in a site- and depth-dependent manner and their relationships with tissue site-specific biomechanical properties. Elastic and poroelastic properties were analyzed from experimental stress-relaxation and sinusoidal indentation measurements with fibril reinforced poroelastic finite element modeling. Proteoglycan (PG) and collagen contents, as well as the collagen orientation angle, were determined as a function of tissue depth using microscopic and spectroscopic methods, and they were compared with biomechanical properties. For all the measurement sites (anterior, middle and posterior) of lateral and medial menisci (n=26), PG content and collagen orientation angle increased as a function of tissue depth while the collagen content had an initial sharp increase followed by a decrease across tissue depth. The highest values (pmeniscus. This location had also higher (pmeniscus, higher (pmeniscus) significantly higher (pmeniscus modulus and/or nonlinear permeability. This study suggests that nonlinear biomechanical properties of meniscus, caused by the collagen network and fluid, may be strongly influenced by tissue osmotic swelling from the deep meniscus caused by the increased PG content, leading to increased collagen fibril tension. These nonlinear biomechanical properties are suggested to be further amplified by higher collagen content at all tissue depths and superficial collagen fibril orientation. However, these structure-function relationships are suggested to be highly site-specific. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Structure, dynamics, and function of biomolecules

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Frauenfelder, H.; Berendzen, J.R.; Garcia, A.; Gupta, G.; Olah, G.A.; Terwilliger, T.C.; Trewhella, J.; Wood, C.C.; Woodruff, W.H.

    1998-01-01

    This is the final report of a three-year, Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) project at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). The authors enhanced Los Alamos' core competency in Bioscience and Biotechnology by building on present strengths in experimental techniques, theory, high-performance computing, modeling, and simulation applied to biomolecular structure, dynamics, and function. Specifically, the authors strengthened their capabilities in neutron/x-ray scattering, x-ray crystallography, NMR, laser, and optical spectroscopies. Initially they focused on supporting the Los alamos Neutron Science Center (LANSCE) in the design and implementation of new neutron scattering instrumentation, they developed new methods for analysis of scattering data, and they developed new projects to study the structures of biomolecular complexes. The authors have also worked to strengthen interactions between theory and experiment, and between the biological and physical sciences. They sponsored regular meetings of members from all interested LANL technical divisions, and supported two lecture series: ''Biology for Physicists'' and ''Issues in Modern Biology''. They also supported the formation of interdisciplinary/inter-divisional teams to develop projects in science-based bioremediation and an integrated structural biology resource. Finally, they successfully worked with a multidisciplinary team to put forward the Laboratory's Genome and Beyond tactical goal

  12. Snake antivenom for snake venom induced consumption coagulopathy

    OpenAIRE

    Maduwage, Kalana; Buckley, Nick A.; Janaka de Silva, H.; Lalloo, David; Isbister, Geoffrey K.

    2015-01-01

    Background\\ud \\ud Snake venom induced consumption coagulopathy is a major systemic effect of envenoming. Observational studies suggest that antivenom improves outcomes for venom induced consumption coagulopathy in some snakebites and not others. However, the effectiveness of snake antivenom in all cases of venom induced consumption coagulopathy is controversial.\\ud \\ud Objectives\\ud \\ud To assess the effect of snake antivenom as a treatment for venom induced consumption coagulopathy in people...

  13. 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.

  14. Anti-arthritic effects of microneedling with bee venom gel

    OpenAIRE

    Mengdi Zhao; Jie Bai; Yang Lu; Shouying Du; Kexin Shang; Pengyue Li; Liu Yang; Boyu Dong; Ning Tan

    2016-01-01

    Objective: To combine with transdermal drug delivery using microneedle to simulate the bee venom therapy to evaluate the permeation of bee venom gel. Methods: In this study, the sodium urate and LPS were used on rats and mice to construct the model. Bee venom gel–microneedle combination effect on the model is to determine the role of microneedle gel permeation by observing inflammation factors. Results: Compared with the model group, the bee venom gel–microneedle combination group can r...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Al-Asmari AK

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Abdulrahman Khazim Al-Asmari,1 Anvarbatcha Riyasdeen,1 Mohammad Hamed Al-Shahrani,2 Mozaffarul Islam1 1Research Center, 2Pediatric Hematology/Oncology and Bone Marrow Transplant Unit, Prince Sultan Military Medical City, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Abstract: Snake venom possesses various kinds of proteins and neurotoxic polypeptides, which can negatively interfere with the neurotransmitter signaling cascade. This phenomenon occurs mainly due to the blocking of ion channels in the body system. Envenomation prevents or severely interrupts nerve impulses from being transmitted, inhibition of adenosine triphosphate synthesis, and proper functioning of the cardiac muscles. However, some beneficial properties of venoms have also been reported. The aim of this study was to examine the snake venom as an anticancer agent due to its inhibitory effects on cancer progression such as cell motility, cell invasion, and colony formation. In this study, the effect of venoms on phenotypic changes and the change on molecular level in colorectal and breast cancer cell lines were examined. A reduction of 60%–90% in cell motility, colony formation, and cell invasion was observed when these cell lines were treated with different concentrations of snake venom. In addition, the increase in oxidative stress that results in an increase in the number of apoptotic cancer cells was significantly higher in the venom-treated cell lines. Further analysis showed that there was a decrease in the expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines and signaling proteins, strongly suggesting a promising role for snake venom against breast and colorectal cancer cell progression. In conclusion, the snake venoms used in this study showed significant anticancer properties against colorectal and breast cancer cell lines. Keywords: colorectal cancer, breast cancer, cell motility, colony formation, oxidative stress, apoptosis, IL-8, IL-6, RhoC, p-Erk1/2

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Ashish; Gupta, Chitra; Salunke, Dinakar M.

    2016-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-05-20

    Mortality due to snakebite is a serious public health problem, and available therapeutics are known to induce debilitating side effects. Traditional medicine suggests that seeds of Mucuna pruriens can provide protection against the effects of snakebite. Our aim is to identify the protein(s) that may be important for snake venom neutralization and elucidate its mechanism of action. To this end, we have identified and purified a protein from M. pruriens, which we have named MP-4. The full-length polypeptide sequence of MP-4 was obtained through N-terminal sequencing of peptide fragments. Sequence analysis suggested that the protein may belong to the Kunitz-type protease inhibitor family and therefore may potentially neutralize the proteases present in snake venom. Using various structural and biochemical tools coupled with in vivo assays, we are able to show that MP-4 does not afford direct protection against snake venom because it is actually a poor inhibitor of serine proteases. Further experiments showed that antibodies generated against MP-4 cross-react with the whole venom and provide protection to mice against Echis carinatus snake venom. This study shows that the MP-4 contributes significantly to the snake venom neutralization activity of M. pruriens seeds through an indirect antibody-mediated mechanism. © 2016 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  18. Photon-photon collisions and photon structure functions at LEP

    CERN Document Server

    Patt, J

    2000-01-01

    The present knowledge of the structure of the photon based on measurements of photon structure functions is discussed. This review covers recent results on QED structure functions and on the hadronic structure function F/sub 2//sup gamma /. (13 refs).

  19. Use of gamma irradiated viper venom as the toxoid against viper venom poisoning in mice and rabbits

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hati, A.K.; Mandal, M.; Hati, R.N.; Das, S.

    1995-01-01

    The present paper deals with detoxification of the crude viper (Vipera russelli) venom by gamma irradiation and its effective immunogenic role in Balb/C mice, used as a toxoid. The successful immunization of rabbits with irradiated viper venom toxoid is also reported. Certain biochemical changes of the venom due to radiation exposure and neutralization capacity of the immune sera against phosphodiesterase and protease activity of the crude viper venom have also been studied. The neutralizing potency of Russell's viper venom (RVV) toxoid anti venom (anti venom raised in rabbits against γ-irradiated RVV toxoid adsorbed on aluminium phosphate), in comparison with a commercial bivalent anti venom (as a standard reference) with reference to haemorrhagic, necrotic and lethal effects of Russell's viper envenomation are reported. 25 refs

  20. New insights into apoptosome structure and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dorstyn, Loretta; Akey, Christopher W; Kumar, Sharad

    2018-05-15

    The apoptosome is a platform that activates apical procaspases in response to intrinsic cell death signals. Biochemical and structural studies in the past two decades have extended our understanding of apoptosome composition and structure, while illuminating the requirements for initiator procaspase activation. A number of studies have now provided high-resolution structures for apoptosomes from C. elegans (CED-4), D. melanogaster (Dark), and H. sapiens (Apaf-1), which define critical protein interfaces, including intra and interdomain interactions. This work also reveals interactions of apoptosomes with their respective initiator caspases, CED-3, Dronc and procaspase-9. Structures of the human apoptosome have defined the requirements for cytochrome c binding, which triggers the conversion of inactive Apaf-1 molecules to an extended, assembly competent state. While recent data have provided a detailed understanding of apoptosome formation and procaspase activation, they also highlight important evolutionary differences with functional implications for caspase activation. CARD/CARD interactions in the CED-4, Dark and Apaf-1 apoptosomes. Type I, II and III interfaces that stabilize CARD-CARD interactions are indicated (left column). Note that the Type I interface appears to be unique to Apaf-1/pc-9 CARD interactions. Middle column shows cartoons of the active states of the CARD-CARD disks, illustrating the two CED-4 tetrameric ring layers (top) and the recruitment of 8 Dronc CARDs and between 3-4 pc-9 CARDs, to the Dark and Apaf-1 apoptosomes respectively (middle and lower panels). Ribbon diagrams of the CED-4, Dark and Apaf-1 apoptosomes are shown (right column).

  1. Cysteine-free peptides in scorpion venom: geographical distribution ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    GRACE

    2006-12-29

    Dec 29, 2006 ... In 1993, the first cysteine-free peptide was isolated from scorpion venom. ..... Venom is produced by 2 venom glands in the tail and stored in 2 ... The resistance of a variety of bacterial micro-organisms .... Biopolymers 55: 4-30.

  2. Allergen-specific immunotherapy of Hymenoptera venom allergy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schiener, Maximilian; Graessel, Anke; Ollert, Markus

    2017-01-01

    by injecting increasing venom doses over years. This venom-specific immunotherapy is highly effective and well tolerated. However, component-resolved information about the venoms has increased in the last years. This knowledge is not only able to improve diagnostics as basis for an accurate therapy...

  3. Some Neuropharmacological Effects of the Crude Venom Extract of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This study reports some neuropharmacological effects of the crude venom extract of Conus musicus (family Conidae) in mice using various experimental models. The crude venom was found to significantly increase tail flick reaction time in mice. The effects of the venom on the central nervous system were studied by ...

  4. Structure Elucidation of A New Coumarin Type Compound, Alternamin, Isolated from the Plant (Murraya Alternans (Kurz) Swingle) Having The Antidote Activity on Snake Venoms

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hla Myo Min; Mya Aye

    2004-06-01

    The structure of a new coumarin type compound isolated from the entitled species was elucidated by the full spectral analysis consisting of FTIR, 1H NMR, DQF COSY, 13C NMR, DEPT, EIMS (HR-EIMS), HMQC and HMBC. The antidote activities of the fresh juice and the ethanolic extract of the plant, and the isolated compound alternamin were also determined

  5. Novel antimicrobial peptides from the venom of eusocial bee Halictus sexcinctus (Hymenoptera: Halictidae)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Monincová, Lenka; Hovorka, Oldřich; Cvačka, Josef; Voburka, Zdeněk; Fučík, Vladimír; Borovičková, Lenka; Bednárová, Lucie; Buděšínský, Miloš; Slaninová, Jiřina; Straka, J.; Čeřovský, Václav

    2009-01-01

    Roč. 92, č. 4 (2009), s. 364-364 ISSN 0006-3525. [American Peptide Symposium /21./. 07.06.2009-12.06.2009, Bloomington] Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z40550506 Keywords : antimicrobial peptide * bee venom * alpha-helical structure Subject RIV: CC - Organic Chemistry

  6. Melectin: A novel antimicrobial peptide from the venom of the cleptoparasitic bee Melecta albifrons

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Čeřovský, Václav; Hovorka, Oldřich; Cvačka, Josef; Voburka, Zdeněk; Bednárová, Lucie; Borovičková, Lenka; Slaninová, Jiřina; Fučík, Vladimír

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 9, č. 17 (2008), s. 2815-2821 ISSN 1439-4227 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA203/08/0536 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z40550506 Keywords : amphipathicity * antimicrobial activity * helical structures * peptides * solitary bee venom Subject RIV: CC - Organic Chemistry Impact factor: 3.322, year: 2008

  7. The effects of Bee Venom and Sweet Bee Venom to the preadipocyte proliferation and lipolysis of adipocyte, localized fat accumulation

    OpenAIRE

    Min-Ki Kim; Si Hyeong, Lee; Jo Young Shin; Kang San Kim; Nam Guen Cho; Ki Rok Kwon; Tae Jin Rhim

    2007-01-01

    Objectives : The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of Bee Venom and Sweet Bee Venom to the primary cultured preadipocyte, adipocytes, and localized fat tissue. Methods : Decreased preadipocyte proliferation and decreased lipogenesis are mechanisms to reduce obesity. So, preadipocytes and adipocytes were performed on cell cultures using Sprague-Dawley Rats and treated with 0.01-1mg/㎖ Bee Venom and Sweet Bee Venom. And porcine skin including fat tissue after treated Bee Ve...

  8. A possible form of the pion's structure function

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Long Ming; Huang Tao

    1986-01-01

    The pion's structure function behaviour is discussed by using the Fock state expansion of the hadronic wave function in QCD in this paper. As an example, we employ a model wave function of the Fock state in the light-cone and assume a Regge behaviour of a weight function for higher Fock states, and we get a possible form of the pion's structure function. This form is consistent with experimental data of the pion's structure function

  9. Integrative characterization of the venom of the coral snake Micrurus dumerilii (Elapidae) from Colombia: Proteome, toxicity, and cross-neutralization by antivenom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rey-Suárez, Paola; Núñez, Vitelbina; Fernández, Julián; Lomonte, Bruno

    2016-03-16

    In Colombia, nearly 2.8% of the 4200 snakebite accidents recorded annually are inflicted by coral snakes (genus Micrurus). Micrurus dumerilii has a broad distribution in this country, especially in densely populated areas. The proteomic profile of its venom was here studied by a bottom-up approach combining RP-HPLC, SDS-PAGE and MALDI-TOF/TOF. Venom proteins were assigned to eleven families, the most abundant being phospholipases A2 (PLA2; 52.0%) and three-finger toxins (3FTx; 28.1%). This compositional profile shows that M. dumerilii venom belongs to the 'PLA2-rich' phenotype, in the recently proposed dichotomy for Micrurus venoms. Enzymatic and toxic venom activities correlated with protein family abundances. Whole venom induced a conspicuous myotoxic, cytotoxic and anticoagulant effect, and was mildly edematogenic and proteolytic, whereas it lacked hemorrhagic activity. Some 3FTxs and PLA2s reproduced the lethal effect of venom. A coral snake antivenom to Micrurus nigrocinctus demonstrated significant cross-recognition of M. dumerilii venom proteins, and accordingly, ability to neutralize its lethal effect. The combined compositional, functional, and immunological data here reported for M. dumerilii venom may contribute to a better understanding of these envenomings, and support the possible use of anti-M. nigrocinctus coral snake antivenom in their treatment. Coral snakes represent a highly diversified group of elapids in the New World, with nearly 70 species within the genus Micrurus. Owing to their scarce yields, the biochemical composition and toxic activities of coral snake venoms have been less well characterized than those of viperid species. In this work, an integrative view of the venom of M. dumerilii, a medically relevant coral snake from Colombia, was obtained by a combined proteomic, functional, and immunological approach. The venom contains proteins from at least eleven families, with a predominance of phospholipases A2 (PLA2), followed by three

  10. Structure-Function Relationships of Ferroelectric Polymers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavlopoulou, Eleni; Maiz, Jon; Spampinato, Nicoletta; Maglione, Mario; Hadziioannou, Georges

    Poly(vinylidene fluoride), PVDF, and its copolymers with trifluoroethylene, P(VDF-co-TrFE) have been long appreciated for their excellent ferroelectric properties. Although they have been mainly studied in the 80s and 90s, understanding their performance is still lacking. Yet the increasing use of P(VDF-co-TrFE) thin films in organic electronic devices during the last ten years revives the need for apprehending the function of these materials. In this work we investigate the structure of P(VDF-co-TrFE) films and correlate it to their ferroelectric properties. Our results show that ferroelectric performance is solely driven by the fraction of polymer that has been crystallized in the ferroelectric phases of PVDF. The relations between remnant polarization, coercive field and dipole switching rate of P(VDF-co-TrFE) with the ferroelectric crystallinity are demonstrated. The French Research Agency (ANR), the Aquitaine Region, Arkema and STMicroelectronics are kindly acknowledged for financial support.

  11. Measuring structure functions at SSC energies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morfin, J.G.; Owens, J.F.

    1985-01-01

    Topics discussed include measuring Λ, tests of QCD using hard scattering processes, and measuring parton distributions. In each case, any opportunities and advantages afforded by the unique features of the SSC are emphasized. The working group on structure functions was charged with investigating two specific questions: (1) How well are the various parton distributions known in the kinematic region relevant to calculations for the SSC. (2) What new information can be learned about parton distributions at the SSC. Especially for this working group, the advantages of having a fixed-target facility at the SSC for the measurement of the parton distributions with multi-TeV leptons, were to be examined. 15 references

  12. Snake venom serine proteinases specificity mapping by proteomic identification of cleavage sites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zelanis, André; Huesgen, Pitter F; Oliveira, Ana Karina; Tashima, Alexandre K; Serrano, Solange M T; Overall, Christopher M

    2015-01-15

    Many snake venom toxins are serine proteases but their specific in vivo targets are mostly unknown. Various act on components of the coagulation cascade, and fibrinolytic and kallikrein-kinin systems to trigger various pathological effects observed in the envenomation. Despite showing high similarity in terms of primary structure snake venom serine proteinases (SVSPs) show exquisite specificity towards macromolecular substrates. Therefore, the characterization of their peptide bond specificity is important for understanding the active site preference associated with effective proteolysis as well as for the design of peptide substrates and inhibitors. Bothrops jararaca contains various SVSPs among which Bothrops protease A is a specific fibrinogenolytic agent and PA-BJ is a platelet-activating enzyme. In this study we used proteome derived peptide libraries in the Proteomic Identification of protease Cleavage Sites (PICS) approach to explore the peptide bond specificity of Bothrops protease A and PA-BJ in order to determine their individual peptide cleavage sequences. A total of 371 cleavage sites (208 for Bothrops protease A and 163 for PA-BJ) were detected and both proteinases displayed a clear preference for arginine at the P1 position. Moreover, the analysis of the specificity profiles of Bothrops protease A and PA-BJ revealed subtle differences in the preferences along P6-P6', despite a common yet unusual preference for Pro at P2. Taken together, these results map the subsite specificity of both SVSPs and shed light in the functional differences between these proteinases. Proteolysis is key to various pathological effects observed upon envenomation by viperid snakes. The use of the Proteomic Identification of protease Cleavage Sites (PICS) approach for the easy mapping of proteinase subsite preferences at both the prime- and non-prime sides concurrently gives rise to a fresh understanding of the interaction of the snake venom serine proteinases with peptide and

  13. Structure and functionality of bromine doped graphite.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamdan, Rashid; Kemper, A F; Cao, Chao; Cheng, H P

    2013-04-28

    First-principles calculations are used to study the enhanced in-plane conductivity observed experimentally in Br-doped graphite, and to study the effect of external stress on the structure and functionality of such systems. The model used in the numerical calculations is that of stage two doped graphite. The band structure near the Fermi surface of the doped systems with different bromine concentrations is compared to that of pure graphite, and the charge transfer between carbon and bromine atoms is analyzed to understand the conductivity change along different high symmetry directions. Our calculations show that, for large interlayer separation between doped graphite layers, bromine is stable in the molecular form (Br2). However, with increased compression (decreased layer-layer separation) Br2 molecules tend to dissociate. While in both forms, bromine is an electron acceptor. The charge exchange between the graphite layers and Br atoms is higher than that with Br2 molecules. Electron transfer to the Br atoms increases the number of hole carriers in the graphite sheets, resulting in an increase of conductivity.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-31

    We studied the immunoreactivity between venoms and commercial antiserums in four Chinese venomous snakes, Bungarus multicinctus, Naja atra, Deinagkistrodon acutus and Gloydius brevicaudus. Venoms from the four snakes shared common antigenic components, and most venom components expressed antigenicity in the immunological reaction between venoms and antiserums. Antiserums cross-reacted with heterologous venoms. Homologous venom and antiserum expressed the highest reaction activity in all cross-reactions. Species-specific antibodies (SSAbs) were obtained from four antiserums by immunoaffinity chromatography: the whole antiserum against each species was gradually passed through a medium system coated with heterologous venoms, and the cross-reacting components in antiserum were immunoabsorbed by the common antigens in heterologous venoms; the unbound components (i.e., SSAbs) were collected, and passed through Hitrap G protein column and concentrated. The SSAbs were found to have high specificity by western blot and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). A 6-well ELISA strip coated with SSAbs was used to assign a venom sample and blood and urine samples from the envenomed rats to a given snake species. Our detections could differentiate positive and negative samples, and identify venoms of a snake species in about 35 min. The ELISA strips developed in this study are clinically useful in rapid and reliable identification of venoms from the above four snake species. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Structure, Function, and Evolution of Rice Centromeres

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jiang, Jiming

    2010-02-04

    The centromere is the most characteristic landmark of eukaryotic chromosomes. Centromeres function as the site for kinetochore assembly and spindle attachment, allowing for the faithful pairing and segregation of sister chromatids during cell division. Characterization of centromeric DNA is not only essential to understand the structure and organization of plant genomes, but it is also a critical step in the development of plant artificial chromosomes. The centromeres of most model eukaryotic species, consist predominantly of long arrays of satellite DNA. Determining the precise DNA boundary of a centromere has proven to be a difficult task in multicellular eukaryotes. We have successfully cloned and sequenced the centromere of rice chromosome 8 (Cen8), representing the first fully sequenced centromere from any multicellular eukaryotes. The functional core of Cen8 spans ~800 kb of DNA, which was determined by chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) using an antibody against the rice centromere-specific H3 histone. We discovered 16 actively transcribed genes distributed throughout the Cen8 region. In addition to Cen8, we have characterized eight additional rice centromeres using the next generation sequencing technology. We discovered four subfamilies of the CRR retrotransposon that is highly enriched in rice centromeres. CRR elements are constitutively transcribed and different CRR subfamilies are differentially processed by RNAi. These results suggest that different CRR subfamilies may play different roles in the RNAi-mediated pathway for formation and maintenance of centromeric chromatin.

  16. The Structural and Functional Organisation of Cognition.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter John Snow

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available This paper proposes that what have been historically and contemporarily defined as different domains of human cognition are served by one of four functionally- and structurally-distinct areas of the prefrontal cortex. Their contributions to human intelligence are as follows: (a BA9, enables our emotional intelligence, engaging the psychosocial domain, (b BA47, enables our practical intelligence, engaging the material domain, (c BA46 (or BA46-9/46, enables our abstract intelligence, engaging the hypothetical domain and (d BA10, enables our temporal intelligence, engaging in planning within any of the other three domains. Given their unique contribution to human cognition, it is proposed that these areas be called the, social (BA9, material (BA47, abstract (BA46-9/46 and temporal (BA10 mind. The evidence that BA47 participates strongly in verbal and gestural communication suggests that language evolved primarily as a consequence of the extreme selective pressure for practicality; an observation supported by the functional connectivity between BA47 and orbital areas that negatively reinforce lying. It is further proposed that the abstract mind (BA46-9/46 is the primary seat of metacognition charged with creating adaptive behavioral strategies by generating higher-order concepts (hypotheses from lower-order concepts originating both from our perceptual representations and the other three domains of cognition.

  17. Snake venoms are integrated systems, but abundant venom proteins evolve more rapidly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aird, Steven D; Aggarwal, Shikha; Villar-Briones, Alejandro; Tin, Mandy Man-Ying; Terada, Kouki; Mikheyev, Alexander S

    2015-08-28

    While many studies have shown that extracellular proteins evolve rapidly, how selection acts on them remains poorly understood. We used snake venoms to understand the interaction between ecology, expression level, and evolutionary rate in secreted protein systems. Venomous snakes employ well-integrated systems of proteins and organic constituents to immobilize prey. Venoms are generally optimized to subdue preferred prey more effectively than non-prey, and many venom protein families manifest positive selection and rapid gene family diversification. Although previous studies have illuminated how individual venom protein families evolve, how selection acts on venoms as integrated systems, is unknown. Using next-generation transcriptome sequencing and mass spectrometry, we examined microevolution in two pitvipers, allopatrically separated for at least 1.6 million years, and their hybrids. Transcriptomes of parental species had generally similar compositions in regard to protein families, but for a given protein family, the homologs present and concentrations thereof sometimes differed dramatically. For instance, a phospholipase A2 transcript comprising 73.4 % of the Protobothrops elegans transcriptome, was barely present in the P. flavoviridis transcriptome (king cobra genome, suggesting that rapid evolution of abundant proteins may be generally true for snake venoms. Looking more broadly at Protobothrops, we show that rapid evolution of the most abundant components is due to positive selection, suggesting an interplay between abundance and adaptation. Given log-scale differences in toxin abundance, which are likely correlated with biosynthetic costs, we hypothesize that as a result of natural selection, snakes optimize return on energetic investment by producing more of venom proteins that increase their fitness. Natural selection then acts on the additive genetic variance of these components, in proportion to their contributions to overall fitness. Adaptive

  18. Sample limited characterization of a novel disulfide-rich venom peptide toxin from terebrid marine snail Terebra variegata.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Prachi Anand

    Full Text Available Disulfide-rich peptide toxins found in the secretions of venomous organisms such as snakes, spiders, scorpions, leeches, and marine snails are highly efficient and effective tools for novel therapeutic drug development. Venom peptide toxins have been used extensively to characterize ion channels in the nervous system and platelet aggregation in haemostatic systems. A significant hurdle in characterizing disulfide-rich peptide toxins from venomous animals is obtaining significant quantities needed for sequence and structural analyses. Presented here is a strategy for the structural characterization of venom peptide toxins from sample limited (4 ng specimens via direct mass spectrometry sequencing, chemical synthesis and NMR structure elucidation. Using this integrated approach, venom peptide Tv1 from Terebra variegata was discovered. Tv1 displays a unique fold not witnessed in prior snail neuropeptides. The novel structural features found for Tv1 suggest that the terebrid pool of peptide toxins may target different neuronal agents with varying specificities compared to previously characterized snail neuropeptides.

  19. QCD dipole prediction for dis and diffractive structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Royon, CH.

    1996-01-01

    The F 2 , F G , R = F L /F T proton structure functions are derived in the QCD dipole picture of BFKL dynamics. We get a three parameter fit describing the 1994 H1 proton structure function F 2 data in the low x, moderate Q 2 range. Without any additional parameter, the gluon density and the longitudinal structure functions are predicted. The diffractive dissociation processes are also discussed, and a new prediction for the proton diffractive structure function is obtained. (author)

  20. Neonatal bee venom exposure induces sensory modality-specific enhancement of nociceptive response in adult rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Mengmeng; Chen, Huisheng; Tang, Jiaguang; Chen, Jun

    2014-06-01

    Previous studies have shown that inflammatory pain at the neonatal stage can produce long-term structural and functional changes in nociceptive pathways, resulting in altered pain perception in adulthood. However, the exact pattern of altered nociceptive response and associated neurochemical changes in the spinal cord in this process is unclear. In this study, we used an experimental paradigm in which each rat first received intraplantar bee venom (BV) or saline injection on postnatal day 1, 4, 7, 14, 21, or 28. This was followed 2 months later by a second intraplantar bee venom injection in the same rats to examine the difference in nociceptive responses. We found that neonatal inflammatory pain induced by the first BV injection significantly reduced baseline paw withdrawal mechanical threshold, but not baseline paw withdrawal thermal latency, when rats were examined 2 months from the first BV injection. Neonatal inflammatory pain also exacerbated mechanical, but not thermal, hyperalgesia in response to the second BV injection in these same rats. Rats exposed to neonatal inflammation also showed up-regulation of spinal NGF, TrkA receptor, BDNF, TrkB receptor, IL-1β, and COX-2 expression following the second BV injection, especially with prior BV exposure on postnatal day 21 or 28. These results indicate that neonatal inflammation produces sensory modality-specific changes in nociceptive behavior and alters neurochemistry in the spinal cord of adult rats. These results also suggest that a prior history of inflammatory pain during the developmental period might have an impact on clinical pain in highly susceptible adult patients. Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Use of immunoturbidimetry to detect venom-antivenom binding using snake venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Leary, M A; Maduwage, K; Isbister, G K

    2013-01-01

    Immunoturbidimetry studies the phenomenon of immunoprecipitation of antigens and antibodies in solution, where there is the formation of large, polymeric insoluble immunocomplexes that increase the turbidity of the solution. We used immunoturbidimetry to investigate the interaction between commercial snake antivenoms and snake venoms, as well as cross-reactivity between different snake venoms. Serial dilutions of commercial snake antivenoms (100μl) in water were placed in the wells of a microtitre plate and 100μl of a venom solution (50μg/ml in water) was added. Absorbance readings were taken at 340nm every minute on a BioTek ELx808 plate reader at 37°C. Limits imposed were a 30minute cut-off and 0.004 as the lowest significant maximum increase. Reactions with rabbit antibodies were carried out similarly, except that antibody dilutions were in PBS. Mixing venom and antivenom/antibodies resulted in an immediate increase in turbidity, which either reached a maximum or continued to increase until a 30minute cut-off. There was a peak in absorbance readings for most Australian snake venoms mixed with the corresponding commercial antivenom, except for Pseudonaja textilis venom and brown snake antivenom. There was cross-reactivity between Naja naja venom from Sri Lanka and tiger snake antivenom indicated by turbidity when they were mixed. Mixing rabbit anti-snake antibodies with snake venoms resulted in increasing turbidity, but there was not a peak suggesting the antibodies were not sufficiently concentrated. The absorbance reading at pre-determined concentrations of rabbit antibodies mixed with different venoms was able to quantify the cross-reactivity between venoms. Indian antivenoms from two manufacturers were tested against four Sri Lankan snake venoms (Daboia russelli, N. naja, Echis carinatus and Bungarus caeruleus) and showed limited formation of immunocomplexes with antivenom from one manufacturer. The turbidity test provides an easy and rapid way to compare

  2. Role of accelerated segment switch in exons to alter targeting (ASSET in the molecular evolution of snake venom proteins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kini R Manjunatha

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Snake venom toxins evolve more rapidly than other proteins through accelerated changes in the protein coding regions. Previously we have shown that accelerated segment switch in exons to alter targeting (ASSET might play an important role in its functional evolution of viperid three-finger toxins. In this phenomenon, short sequences in exons are radically changed to unrelated sequences and hence affect the folding and functional properties of the toxins. Results Here we analyzed other snake venom protein families to elucidate the role of ASSET in their functional evolution. ASSET appears to be involved in the functional evolution of three-finger toxins to a greater extent than in several other venom protein families. ASSET leads to replacement of some of the critical amino acid residues that affect the biological function in three-finger toxins as well as change the conformation of the loop that is involved in binding to specific target sites. Conclusion ASSET could lead to novel functions in snake venom proteins. Among snake venom serine proteases, ASSET contributes to changes in three surface segments. One of these segments near the substrate binding region is known to affect substrate specificity, and its exchange may have significant implications for differences in isoform catalytic activity on specific target protein substrates. ASSET therefore plays an important role in functional diversification of snake venom proteins, in addition to accelerated point mutations in the protein coding regions. Accelerated point mutations lead to fine-tuning of target specificity, whereas ASSET leads to large-scale replacement of multiple functionally important residues, resulting in change or gain of functions.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Modahl, Cassandra M; Mackessy, Stephen P

    2016-06-01

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

  4. 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. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  5. QCD predictions for weak neutral current structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wu Jimin

    1987-01-01

    Employing the analytic expression (to the next leading order) for non-singlet component of structure function which the author got from QCD theory and putting recent experiment result of neutral current structure function at Q 2 = 11 (GeV/C) 2 as input, the QCD prediction for neutral current structure function of their scaling violation behaviours was given

  6. An approach to the structure function for nucleon

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Long Ming

    1986-01-01

    The structure function for nucleon is discussed by using the method given in a previous paper. The formula are compared with the experimental data from low Q 2 to high Q 2 . The results show that the way that the structure function for nucleon can be obtained from the hadronic wavefunction is a possible approach of investigating structure functions for hadron

  7. Crustal Structure beneath Alaska from Receiver Functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Y.; Li, A.

    2017-12-01

    The crustal structure in Alaska has not been well resolved due to the remote nature of much of the state. The USArray Transportable Array (TA), which is operating in Alaska and northwestern Canada, significantly increases the coverage of broadband seismic stations in the region and allows for a more comprehensive study of the crust. We have analyzed P-receiver functions from earthquake data recorded by 76 stations of the TA and AK networks. Both common conversion point (CCP) and H-K methods are used to estimate the mean crustal thickness. The results from the CCP stacking method show that the Denali fault marks a sharp transition from thick crust in the south to thin crust in the north. The thickest crust up to 52 km is located in the St. Elias Range, which has been formed by oblique collision between the Yakutat microplate and North America. A thick crust of 48 km is also observed beneath the eastern Alaska Range. These observations suggest that high topography in Alaska is largely compensated by the thick crust root. The Moho depth ranges from 28 km to 35 km beneath the northern lowlands and increases to 40-45 km under the Books Range. The preliminary crustal thickness from the H-K method generally agrees with that from the CCP stacking with thicker crust beneath high mountain ranges and thinner crust beneath lowlands and basins. However, the offshore part is not well constrained due to the limited coverage of stations. The mean Vp/Vs ratio is around 1.7 in the Yukon-Tanana terrane and central-northern Alaska. The ratio is about 1.9 in central and southern Alaska with higher values at the Alaska Range, Wrangell Mountains, and St. Elias Range. Further data analyses are needed for obtaining more details of the crustal structure in Alaska to decipher the origin and development of different tectonic terranes.

  8. Comparison of Vespula germanica venoms obtained from different sources.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanchez, F; Blanca, M; Miranda, A; Carmona, M J; Garcia, J; Fernandez, J; Torres, M J; Rondon, M C; Juarez, C

    1994-08-01

    This study was carried out to compare the allergenic potency of Vespula germanica (VG) venoms extracted by different methods and commercially available venoms from Vespula species currently used for in vivo and in vitro studies including immunotherapy. Pure VG venom was used as the reference material. Protein content and enzymatic and allergenic properties of all venoms studied were determined by dye stain reagent, hyaluronidase and phospholipase A1B enzyme activities, and radioallergosorbent test inhibition studies, respectively. Radioallergosorbent test discs sensitized with commercial and pure VG venom were compared using specific IgE antibodies from subjects allergic to VG venom. The data obtained indicate that there were important differences in the allergenic potency between the Vespula species venoms employed for in vivo and/or in vitro assays, VG venom obtained by sac dissection, and pure VG venom. These results indicate that venoms from Vespula species used for in vitro and in vivo tests have a lower concentration of allergens and contain nonvenom proteins. These data should be taken into account when these vespid venoms are used for diagnostic purposes and also when evaluating immunotherapy studies.

  9. Effect of Mucuna pruriens Seed Extract Pretreatment on the Responses of Spontaneously Beating Rat Atria and Aortic Ring to Naja sputatrix (Javan Spitting Cobra) Venom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fung, Shin Yee; Tan, Nget Hong; Sim, Si Mui; Aguiyi, John C.

    2012-01-01

    Mucuna pruriens Linn. (velvet bean) has been used by native Nigerians as a prophylactic for snakebite. Rats pretreated with M. pruriens seed extract (MPE) have been shown to protect against the lethal and cardiovascular depressant effects of Naja sputatrix (Javan spitting cobra) venoms, and the protective effect involved immunological neutralization of the venom toxins. To investigate further the mechanism of the protective effect of MPE pretreatment against cobra venom toxicity, the actions of Naja sputatrix venom on spontaneously beating rat atria and aortic rings isolated from both MPE pretreated and untreated rats were studied. Our results showed that the MPE pretreatment conferred protection against cobra venom-induced depression of atrial contractility and atrial rate in the isolated atrial preparations, but it had no effect on the venom-induced contractile response of aortic ring preparation. These observations suggested that the protective effect of MPE pretreatment against cobra venom toxicity involves a direct protective action of MPE on the heart function, in addition to the known immunological neutralization mechanism, and that the protective effect does not involve action on blood vessel contraction. The results also suggest that M. pruriens seed may contain novel cardioprotective agent with potential therapeutic value. PMID:21785646

  10. Effect of Mucuna pruriens Seed Extract Pretreatment on the Responses of Spontaneously Beating Rat Atria and Aortic Ring to Naja sputatrix (Javan Spitting Cobra Venom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shin Yee Fung

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Mucuna pruriens Linn. (velvet bean has been used by native Nigerians as a prophylactic for snakebite. Rats pretreated with M. pruriens seed extract (MPE have been shown to protect against the lethal and cardiovascular depressant effects of Naja sputatrix (Javan spitting cobra venoms, and the protective effect involved immunological neutralization of the venom toxins. To investigate further the mechanism of the protective effect of MPE pretreatment against cobra venom toxicity, the actions of Naja sputatrix venom on spontaneously beating rat atria and aortic rings isolated from both MPE pretreated and untreated rats were studied. Our results showed that the MPE pretreatment conferred protection against cobra venom-induced depression of atrial contractility and atrial rate in the isolated atrial preparations, but it had no effect on the venom-induced contractile response of aortic ring preparation. These observations suggested that the protective effect of MPE pretreatment against cobra venom toxicity involves a direct protective action of MPE on the heart function, in addition to the known immunological neutralization mechanism, and that the protective effect does not involve action on blood vessel contraction. The results also suggest that M. pruriens seed may contain novel cardioprotective agent with potential therapeutic value.

  11. Tracing Monotreme Venom Evolution in the Genomics Era

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camilla M. Whittington

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The monotremes (platypuses and echidnas represent one of only four extant venomous mammalian lineages. Until recently, monotreme venom was poorly understood. However, the availability of the platypus genome and increasingly sophisticated genomic tools has allowed us to characterize platypus toxins, and provides a means of reconstructing the evolutionary history of monotreme venom. Here we review the physiology of platypus and echidna crural (venom systems as well as pharmacological and genomic studies of monotreme toxins. Further, we synthesize current ideas about the evolution of the venom system, which in the platypus is likely to have been retained from a venomous ancestor, whilst being lost in the echidnas. We also outline several research directions and outstanding questions that would be productive to address in future research. An improved characterization of mammalian venoms will not only yield new toxins with potential therapeutic uses, but will also aid in our understanding of the way that this unusual trait evolves.

  12. Tracing monotreme venom evolution in the genomics era.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whittington, Camilla M; Belov, Katherine

    2014-04-02

    The monotremes (platypuses and echidnas) represent one of only four extant venomous mammalian lineages. Until recently, monotreme venom was poorly understood. However, the availability of the platypus genome and increasingly sophisticated genomic tools has allowed us to characterize platypus toxins, and provides a means of reconstructing the evolutionary history of monotreme venom. Here we review the physiology of platypus and echidna crural (venom) systems as well as pharmacological and genomic studies of monotreme toxins. Further, we synthesize current ideas about the evolution of the venom system, which in the platypus is likely to have been retained from a venomous ancestor, whilst being lost in the echidnas. We also outline several research directions and outstanding questions that would be productive to address in future research. An improved characterization of mammalian venoms will not only yield new toxins with potential therapeutic uses, but will also aid in our understanding of the way that this unusual trait evolves.

  13. 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. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Significance tests for functional data with complex dependence structure

    KAUST Repository

    Staicu, Ana-Maria; Lahiri, Soumen N.; Carroll, Raymond J.

    2015-01-01

    We propose an L (2)-norm based global testing procedure for the null hypothesis that multiple group mean functions are equal, for functional data with complex dependence structure. Specifically, we consider the setting of functional data with a

  15. Dendritic Actin Cytoskeleton: Structure, Functions, and Regulations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anja Konietzny

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Actin is a versatile and ubiquitous cytoskeletal protein that plays a major role in both the establishment and the maintenance of neuronal polarity. For a long time, the most prominent roles that were attributed to actin in neurons were the movement of growth cones, polarized cargo sorting at the axon initial segment, and the dynamic plasticity of dendritic spines, since those compartments contain large accumulations of actin filaments (F-actin that can be readily visualized using electron- and fluorescence microscopy. With the development of super-resolution microscopy in the past few years, previously unknown structures of the actin cytoskeleton have been uncovered: a periodic lattice consisting of actin and spectrin seems to pervade not only the whole axon, but also dendrites and even the necks of dendritic spines. Apart from that striking feature, patches of F-actin and deep actin filament bundles have been described along the lengths of neurites. So far, research has been focused on the specific roles of actin in the axon, while it is becoming more and more apparent that in the dendrite, actin is not only confined to dendritic spines, but serves many additional and important functions. In this review, we focus on recent developments regarding the role of actin in dendrite morphology, the regulation of actin dynamics by internal and external factors, and the role of F-actin in dendritic protein trafficking.

  16. Retroviral RNA Dimerization: From Structure to Functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Noé Dubois

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available The genome of the retroviruses is a dimer composed by two homologous copies of genomic RNA (gRNA molecules of positive polarity. The dimerization process allows two gRNA molecules to be non-covalently linked together through intermolecular base-pairing. This step is critical for the viral life cycle and is highly conserved among retroviruses with the exception of spumaretroviruses. Furthermore, packaging of two gRNA copies into viral particles presents an important evolutionary advantage for immune system evasion and drug resistance. Recent studies reported RNA switches models regulating not only gRNA dimerization, but also translation and packaging, and a spatio-temporal characterization of viral gRNA dimerization within cells are now at hand. This review summarizes our current understanding on the structural features of the dimerization signals for a variety of retroviruses (HIVs, MLV, RSV, BLV, MMTV, MPMV…, the mechanisms of RNA dimer formation and functional implications in the retroviral cycle.

  17. Structure and function of DNA polymerase μ

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Matsumoto, Takuro; Maezawa, So

    2013-01-01

    DNA polymerases are enzymes playing the central role in DNA metabolism, including DNA replication, DNA repair and recombination. DNA polymerase μ (pol μ DNA polymerase λ (pol λ) and terminal deoxynucleotidyltransferase (TdT) in X family DNA polymerases function in non-homologous end-joining (NHEJ), which is the predonmiant repair pathway for DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs). NHEJ involves enzymes that capture both ends of the broken DNA strand, bring them together in a synaptic DNA-protein complex, and repair the DSB. Pol μ and pol λ fill in the gaps at the junction to maintain the genomic integrity. TdT synthesizes N region at the junction during V(D)J recombination and promotes diversity of immunoglobulin or T-cell receptor gene. Among these three polymerases, the regulatory mechanisms of pol μ remain rather unclear. We have approached the mechanism of pol μ from both sides of structure and cellular dynamics. Here, we propose some new insights into pol μ and the probable NHEJ model including our findings. (author)

  18. Neisserial surface lipoproteins: structure, function and biogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hooda, Yogesh; Shin, Hyejin E; Bateman, Thomas J; Moraes, Trevor F

    2017-03-01

    The surface of many Gram-negative bacteria contains lipidated protein molecules referred to as surface lipoproteins or SLPs. SLPs play critical roles in host immune evasion, nutrient acquisition and regulation of the bacterial stress response. The focus of this review is on the SLPs present in Neisseria, a genus of bacteria that colonise the mucosal surfaces of animals. Neisseria contains two pathogens of medical interest, namely Neisseria meningitidis and N. gonorrhoeae. Several SLPs have been identified in Neisseria and their study has elucidated key strategies used by these pathogens to survive inside the human body. Herein, we focus on the identification, structure and function of SLPs that have been identified in Neisseria. We also survey the translocation pathways used by these SLPs to reach the cell surface. Specifically, we elaborate on the strategies used by neisserial SLPs to translocate across the outer membrane with an emphasis on Slam, a novel outer membrane protein that has been implicated in SLP biogenesis. Taken together, the study of SLPs in Neisseria illustrates the widespread roles played by this family of proteins in Gram-negative bacteria. © FEMS 2017. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. Structure-based inference of molecular functions of proteins of unknown function from Berkeley Structural Genomics Center

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kim, Sung-Hou; Shin, Dong Hae; Hou, Jingtong; Chandonia, John-Marc; Das, Debanu; Choi, In-Geol; Kim, Rosalind; Kim, Sung-Hou

    2007-09-02

    Advances in sequence genomics have resulted in an accumulation of a huge number of protein sequences derived from genome sequences. However, the functions of a large portion of them cannot be inferred based on the current methods of sequence homology detection to proteins of known functions. Three-dimensional structure can have an important impact in providing inference of molecular function (physical and chemical function) of a protein of unknown function. Structural genomics centers worldwide have been determining many 3-D structures of the proteins of unknown functions, and possible molecular functions of them have been inferred based on their structures. Combined with bioinformatics and enzymatic assay tools, the successful acceleration of the process of protein structure determination through high throughput pipelines enables the rapid functional annotation of a large fraction of hypothetical proteins. We present a brief summary of the process we used at the Berkeley Structural Genomics Center to infer molecular functions of proteins of unknown function.

  20. QCD dipole predictions for DIS and diffractive structure functions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Royon, C.

    1997-01-01

    The proton structure function F 2 , the gluon density F G , and the longitudinal structure function F L are derived in the QCD dipole picture of BFKL dynamics. We use a three parameter fit to describe the 1994 H1 proton structure function F 2 data in the low x, moderate Q 2 range. Without any additional parameter, the gluon density and the longitudinal structure functions are predicted. The diffractive dissociation processes are also discussed within the same framework, and a new prediction for the proton diffractive structure function is obtained

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kovalchuk, Sergey I; Ziganshin, Rustam H; Starkov, Vladislav G; Tsetlin, Victor I; Utkin, Yuri N

    2016-04-12

    Venoms of most Russian viper species are poorly characterized. Here, by quantitative chromato-mass-spectrometry, we analyzed protein and peptide compositions of venoms from four Vipera species (V. kaznakovi, V. renardi, V. orlovi and V. nikolskii) inhabiting different regions of Russia. In all these species, the main components were phospholipases A₂, their content ranging from 24% in V. orlovi to 65% in V. nikolskii. Altogether, enzyme content in venom of V. nikolskii reached ~85%. Among the non-enzymatic proteins, the most abundant were disintegrins (14%) in the V. renardi venom, C-type lectin like (12.5%) in V. kaznakovi, cysteine-rich venom proteins (12%) in V. orlovi and venom endothelial growth factors (8%) in V. nikolskii. In total, 210 proteins and 512 endogenous peptides were identified in the four viper venoms. They represented 14 snake venom protein families, most of which were found in the venoms of Vipera snakes previously. However, phospholipase B and nucleotide degrading enzymes were reported here for the first time. Compositions of V. kaznakovi and V. orlovi venoms were described for the first time and showed the greatest similarity among the four venoms studied, which probably reflected close relationship between these species within the "kaznakovi" complex.

  2. High-resolution picture of a venom gland transcriptome: case study with the marine snail Conus consors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terrat, Yves; Biass, Daniel; Dutertre, Sébastien; Favreau, Philippe; Remm, Maido; Stöcklin, Reto; Piquemal, David; Ducancel, Frédéric

    2012-01-01

    Although cone snail venoms have been intensively investigated in the past few decades, little is known about the whole conopeptide and protein content in venom ducts, especially at the transcriptomic level. If most of the previous studies focusing on a limited number of sequences have contributed to a better understanding of conopeptide superfamilies, they did not give access to a complete panorama of a whole venom duct. Additionally, rare transcripts were usually not identified due to sampling effect. This work presents the data and analysis of a large number of sequences obtained from high throughput 454 sequencing technology using venom ducts of Conus consors, an Indo-Pacific living piscivorous cone snail. A total of 213,561 Expressed Sequence Tags (ESTs) with an average read length of 218 base pairs (bp) have been obtained. These reads were assembled into 65,536 contiguous DNA sequences (contigs) then into 5039 clusters. The data revealed 11 conopeptide superfamilies representing a total of 53 new isoforms (full length or nearly full-length sequences). Considerable isoform diversity and major differences in transcription level could be noted between superfamilies. A, O and M superfamilies are the most diverse. The A family isoforms account for more than 70% of the conopeptide cocktail (considering all ESTs before clustering step). In addition to traditional superfamilies and families, minor transcripts including both cysteine free and cysteine-rich peptides could be detected, some of them figuring new clades of conopeptides. Finally, several sets of transcripts corresponding to proteins commonly recruited in venom function could be identified for the first time in cone snail venom duct. This work provides one of the first large-scale EST project for a cone snail venom duct using next-generation sequencing, allowing a detailed overview of the venom duct transcripts. This leads to an expanded definition of the overall cone snail venom duct transcriptomic activity

  3. Allergen immunotherapy for insect venom allergy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dhami, S; Zaman, H; Varga, E-M

    2016-01-01

    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...

  4. STUDY ON ANTIBACTERIAL ACTIVITY OF BEE VENOM.

    OpenAIRE

    Yeon Jo Ha; Chi Won Noh; Woo Young Bang; Sam Woong Kim; Sang Wan Gal.

    2018-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the antimicrobial activity against Salmonella infection which causes intestinal diseases from bee venom which is one of the social insects, and to find a way which use ghost vaccine. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of bee venom against Salmonella Typhimurium χ3339 was 101.81 ug/ml. Based on the result of MIC, the antimicrobial activity according to amount of the cells showed strong activities below 106 CFU/ml, but exhibited no and low ac...

  5. 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

    2008-05-01

    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.

  6. Production of antibacterial peptide from bee venom via a new strategy for heterologous expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hou, Chunsheng; Guo, Liqiong; Lin, Junfang; You, Linfeng; Wu, Wuhua

    2014-12-01

    Honey bee is important economic insect that not only pollinates fruits and crops but also provides products with various physiological activities. Bee venom is a functional agent that is widely applied in clinical treatment and pharmacy. Secapin is one of these agents that have a significant role in therapy. The functions of secapin from the bee venom have been documented, but little information is known about its heterologous expression under natural condition. Moreover, few scholars verified experimentally the functions of secapin from bee venom in vitro. In this study, we successfully constructed a heterologous expression vector, which is different from conventional expression system. A transgenic approach was established for transformation of secapin gene from the venom of Apis mellifera carnica (Ac-sec) into the edible fungi, Coprinus cinereus. Ac-sec was encoded by a 234 bp nucleotide that contained a signal peptide domain and two potential phosphorylation sites. The sequence exhibited highly homology with various secapins characterized from honey bee and related species. Southern blot data indicated that Ac-sec was present as single or multiple copy loci in the C. cinereus genome. By co-transformation and double-layer active assay, Ac-sec was expressed successfully in C. cinereus and the antibacterial activity of the recombinants was identified, showing notable antibacterial activities on different bacteria. Although Ac-sec is from the venom of Apidae, phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that Ac-sec was more closely related to that of Vespid than to bee species from Apidae. The molecular characteristics of Ac-sec and the potential roles of small peptides in biology were discussed.

  7. Structural and Functional View of Polypharmacology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moya-García, Aurelio; Adeyelu, Tolulope; Kruger, Felix A; Dawson, Natalie L; Lees, Jon G; Overington, John P; Orengo, Christine; Ranea, Juan A G

    2017-08-31

    Protein domains mediate drug-protein interactions and this principle can guide the design of multi-target drugs i.e. polypharmacology. In this study, we associate multi-target drugs with CATH functional families through the overrepresentation of targets of those drugs in CATH functional families. Thus, we identify CATH functional families that are currently enriched in drugs (druggable CATH functional families) and we use the network properties of these druggable protein families to analyse their association with drug side effects. Analysis of selected druggable CATH functional families, enriched in drug targets, show that relatives exhibit highly conserved drug binding sites. Furthermore, relatives within druggable CATH functional families occupy central positions in a human protein functional network, cluster together forming network neighbourhoods and are less likely to be within proteins associated with drug side effects. Our results demonstrate that CATH functional families can be used to identify drug-target interactions, opening a new research direction in target identification.

  8. Enzymatic analysis of Hemiscorpius lepturus scorpion venom using zymography and venom-specific antivenin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seyedian, Ramin; Pipelzadeh, Mohammad Hassan; Jalali, Amir; Kim, Euikyung; Lee, Hyunkyoung; Kang, Changkeun; Cha, Mijin; Sohn, Eun-Tae; Jung, Eun-Sun; Rahmani, Ali Hassan; Mirakabady, Abbas Zare

    2010-09-15

    Hemiscorpius lepturus envenomation exhibits various pathological changes in the affected tissues, including skin, blood cells, cardiovascular and central nervous systems. The enzymatic activity and protein component of the venom have not been described previously. In the present study, the electrophoretic profile of H. lepturus venom was determined by SDS-PAGE (12 and 15%), resulting in major protein bands at 3.5-5, 30-35 and 50-60 kDa. The enzymatic activities of the venom was, for the first time, investigated using various zymography techniques, which showed the gelatinolytic, caseinolytic, and hyaluronidase activities mainly at around 50-60 kDa, 30-40 kDa, and 40-50 kDa, respectively. Among these, the proteolytic activities was almost completely disappeared in the presence of a matrix metalloproteinase inhibitor, 1, 10-phenanthroline. Antigen-antibody interactions between the venom and its Iranian antivenin was observed by Western blotting, and it showed several antigenic proteins in the range of 30-160 kDa. This strong antigen-antibody reaction was also demonstrated through an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The gelatinase activity of the venom was suppressed by Razi institute polyvalent antivenin, suggesting the inhibitory effect of the antivenin against H. lepturus venom protease activities. Prudently, more extensive clinical studies are necessary for validation of its use in envenomed patients. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. 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.

    2014-01-01

    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. PMID:25533521

  10. 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.

  11. Obtained and evaluation of antisera raised against irradiated crotalic whole venom or crotoxin in 60 Co source

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Paula, Regina A. de.

    1995-01-01

    Snake bite is a great Public Health problem in our country. The accidents with snakes from Crotalus genus are the most severe. About 1% of the victims die without seratherapy. The antivenons are obtained from hyper immune horse plasma. During the production these animals present signs of envenoming that result in a decrease of organic resistance besides the horses maintenance is very expensive and the producers are fewer, so the sera production is restrict. Many techniques which could reduce the venoms toxicity and increase the sera production using chemical and physical agents have been studied. The gamma rays are excellent tool to detoxify venoms and toxins. It is able to modify protein structures that decrease lethally, toxic and enzymatic activities without modifying the immunogenicity. So, it is important evaluate the sera production in rabbits using gamma rays detoxified venom and crotoxin as immunogen and their power as reagents in immuno assays. In order to obtain the antisera, Crotalus durissus terrificus whole venom or isolated crotoxin was irradiated with 2.000 Gy in 60 Co source, in a 150 mM NaCl solution, and inoculated in rabbits. The sera production were screened by immunoprecipitation, immuno enzymatic (ELISA) and immunoradiometric (IRMA) assays. The specificity was studied by immuno-electrophoresis, ELISA and western blot techniques. The neutralizing power was evaluated by neutralization of phospholipase A 2 activity of toxin in vitro. The antisera were used as reagents in antigen capture assays ELISA and IRMA immuno assays to detect circulant antigens in sera of mice experimentally inoculated with crotalic venom or crotoxin. The results showed that both detoxified venom or crotoxin were good immunogens, and they were able to induce antibodies that could recognize non-irradiated venom or isolated crotoxin. The data suggest that those antibodies present more specificity and higher in vitro neutralizing power, when compared with commercial

  12. Bee Venom Phospholipase A2: Yesterday's Enemy Becomes Today's Friend.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Gihyun; Bae, Hyunsu

    2016-02-22

    Bee venom therapy has been used to treat immune-related diseases such as arthritis for a long time. Recently, it has revealed that group III secretory phospholipase A2 from bee venom (bee venom group III sPLA2) has in vitro and in vivo immunomodulatory effects. A growing number of reports have demonstrated the therapeutic effects of bee venom group III sPLA2. Notably, new experimental data have shown protective immune responses of bee venom group III sPLA2 against a wide range of diseases including asthma, Parkinson's disease, and drug-induced organ inflammation. It is critical to evaluate the beneficial and adverse effects of bee venom group III sPLA2 because this enzyme is known to be the major allergen of bee venom that can cause anaphylactic shock. For many decades, efforts have been made to avoid its adverse effects. At high concentrations, exposure to bee venom group III sPLA2 can result in damage to cellular membranes and necrotic cell death. In this review, we summarized the current knowledge about the therapeutic effects of bee venom group III sPLA2 on several immunological diseases and described the detailed mechanisms of bee venom group III sPLA2 in regulating various immune responses and physiopathological changes.

  13. Evaluation of anti-Bothrops asper venom activity of ethanolic extract of Brownea rosademonte leaves

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salazar Marcos

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Significant inhibition of the coagulant and hemorrhagic effects of Bothrops asper venom was demonstrated by ethanolic extract prepared from the leaves of Brownea rosademonte. In vitro experiments preincubating 5.5 mg of extract kg-1 b.m. for 30 min with a minimum hemorrhagic dose of venom (273.8 ± 16.1 μg of venom kg-1 b.m. lowered the hemorrhagic activity of the venom alone in CD-1 mice by 51.5 ± 2.6 %. Additionally, 1.7 mg extract L-1 plasma prolonged 5.1 times the plasma coagulation time. Fractionation of the extract led to the isolation of two compounds: ononitol (1 and quercetrin (2. The structure of compounds 1 and 2 was established by spectroscopic analyses, including APCI-HRMS and NMR (1H, 13C, HSQC, HMBC and COSY. A quercetrin concentration of 0.11 μmol L-1 prolonged the plasma coagulation time 2.6 times demonstrating that this compound was one of the active constituents of the Brownea rosademonte extract.

  14. Simplification of intradermal skin testing in Hymenoptera venom allergic children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cichocka-Jarosz, Ewa; Stobiecki, Marcin; Brzyski, Piotr; Rogatko, Iwona; Nittner-Marszalska, Marita; Sztefko, Krystyna; Czarnobilska, Ewa; Lis, Grzegorz; Nowak-Węgrzyn, Anna

    2017-03-01

    The direct comparison between children and adults with Hymenoptera venom anaphylaxis (HVA) has never been extensively reported. Severe HVA with IgE-documented mechanism is the recommendation for venom immunotherapy, regardless of age. To determine the differences in the basic diagnostic profile between children and adults with severe HVA and its practical implications. We reviewed the medical records of 91 children and 121 adults. Bee venom allergy was exposure dependent, regardless of age (P bee venom allergic group, specific IgE levels were significantly higher in children (29.5 kU A /L; interquartile range, 11.30-66.30 kU A /L) compared with adults (5.10 kU A /L; interquartile range, 2.03-8.30 kU A /L) (P venom were higher in bee venom allergic children compared with the wasp venom allergic children (P venom. At concentrations lower than 0.1 μg/mL, 16% of wasp venom allergic children and 39% of bee venom allergic children had positive intradermal test results. The median tryptase level was significantly higher in adults than in children for the entire study group (P = .002), as well as in bee (P = .002) and wasp venom allergic groups (P = .049). The basic diagnostic profile in severe HVA reactors is age dependent. Lower skin test reactivity to culprit venom in children may have practical application in starting the intradermal test procedure with higher venom concentrations. Copyright © 2016 American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Pulmonary mechanic and lung histology induced by Crotalus durissus cascavella snake venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira Neto, Joselito de; Silveira, João Alison de Moraes; Serra, Daniel Silveira; Viana, Daniel de Araújo; Borges-Nojosa, Diva Maria; Sampaio, Célia Maria Souza; Monteiro, Helena Serra Azul; Cavalcante, Francisco Sales Ávila; Evangelista, Janaina Serra Azul Monteiro

    2017-10-01

    This study have analyzed the pulmonary function in an experimental model of acute lung injury, induced by the Crotalus durissus cascavella venom (C. d. cascavella) (3.0 μg/kg - i.p), in pulmonary mechanic and histology at 1 h, 3 h, 6 h, 12 h and 24 h after inoculation. The C. d. cascavella venom led to an increase in Newtonian Resistance (R N ), Tissue Resistance (G) and Tissue Elastance (H) in all groups when compared to the control, particularly at 12 h and 24 h. The Histeresivity (η) increased 6 h, 12 h and 24 h after inoculation. There was a decrease in Static Compliance (C ST ) at 6 h, 12 h and 24 h and inspiratory capacity (IC) at 3 h, 6 h, 12 h and 24 h. C. d. cascavella venom showed significant morphological changes such as atelectasis, emphysema, hemorrhage, polymorphonuclear inflammatory infiltrate, edema and congestion. After a challenge with methacholine (MCh), R N demonstrated significant changes at 6, 12 and 24 h. This venom caused mechanical and histopathological changes in the lung tissue; however, its mechanisms of action need further studies in order to better elucidate the morphofunctional lesions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Inhibition of Snake Venom Metalloproteinase by β-Lactoglobulin Peptide from Buffalo (Bubalus bubalis) Colostrum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arpitha, Ashok; Sebastin Santhosh, M; Rohit, A C; Girish, K S; Vinod, D; Aparna, H S

    2017-08-01

    Bioactive peptide research has experienced considerable therapeutic interest owing to varied physiological functions, efficacy in excretion, and tolerability of peptides. Colostrum is a rich natural source of bioactive peptides with many properties elucidated such as anti-thrombotic, anti-hypertensive, opioid, immunomodulatory, etc. In this study, a variant peptide derived from β-lactoglobulin from buffalo colostrum was evaluated for the anti-ophidian property by targeting snake venom metalloproteinases. These are responsible for rapid local tissue damages that develop after snakebite such as edema, hemorrhage, myonecrosis, and extracellular matrix degradation. The peptide identified by LC-MS/MS effectively neutralized hemorrhagic activity of the Echis carinatus venom in a dose-dependent manner. Histological examinations revealed that the peptide mitigated basement membrane degradation and accumulation of inflammatory leucocytes at the venom-injected site. Inhibition of proteolytic activity was evidenced in both casein and gelatin zymograms. Also, inhibition of fibrinolytic and fibrinogenolytic activities was seen. The UV-visible spectral study implicated Zn 2+ chelation, which was further confirmed by molecular docking and dynamic studies by assessing molecular interactions, thus implicating the probable mechanism for inhibition of venom-induced proteolytic and hemorrhagic activities. The present investigation establishes newer vista for the BLG-col peptide with anti-ophidian efficacy as a promising candidate for therapeutic interventions.

  17. Inorganic pyrophosphatases: structural diversity serving the function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samygina, V. R.

    2016-05-01

    The review is devoted to ubiquitous enzymes, inorganic pyrophosphatases, which are essential in all living organisms. Despite the long history of investigations, these enzymes continue to attract interest. The review focuses on the three-dimensional structures of various representatives of this class of proteins. The structural diversity, the relationship between the structure and some properties of pyrophosphatases and various mechanisms of enzyme action related to the structural diversity of these enzymes are discussed. Interactions of pyrophosphatase with other proteins and possible practical applications are considered. The bibliography includes 56 references.

  18. Mesobuthus Venom-Derived Antimicrobial Peptides Possess Intrinsic Multifunctionality and Differential Potential as Drugs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bin Gao

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Animal venoms are a mixture of peptides and proteins that serve two basic biological functions: predation and defense against both predators and microbes. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs are a common component extensively present in various scorpion venoms (herein abbreviated as svAMPs. However, their roles in predation and defense against predators and potential as drugs are poorly understood. Here, we report five new venom peptides with antimicrobial activity from two Mesobuthus scorpion species. These α-helical linear peptides displayed highly bactericidal activity toward all the Gram-positive bacteria used here but differential activity against Gram-negative bacteria and fungi. In addition to the antibiotic activity, these AMPs displayed lethality to houseflies and hemotoxin-like toxicity on mice by causing hemolysis, tissue damage and inducing inflammatory pain. Unlike AMPs from other origins, these venom-derived AMPs seem to be unsuitable as anti-infective drugs due to their high hemolysis and low serum stability. However, MeuTXKβ1, a known two-domain Mesobuthus AMP, is an exception since it exhibits high activity toward antibiotic resistant Staphylococci clinical isolates with low hemolysis and high serum stability. The findings that the classical AMPs play predatory and defensive roles indicate that the multifunctionality of scorpion venom components is an intrinsic feature likely evolved by natural selection from microbes, prey and predators of scorpions. This definitely provides an excellent system in which one can study how a protein adaptively evolves novel functions in a new environment. Meantimes, new strategies are needed to remove the toxicity of svAMPs on eukaryotic cells when they are used as leads for anti-infective drugs.

  19. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-12-21

    We report the proteomic analysis of ontogenetic changes in venom composition of the Central American bushmaster, Lachesis stenophrys, and the characterization of the venom proteomes of two congeneric pitvipers, Lachesis melanocephala (black-headed bushmaster) and Lachesis acrochorda (Chochoan bushmaster). Along with the previous characterization of the venom proteome of Lachesis muta muta (from Bolivia), our present outcome enables a comparative overview of the composition and distribution of the toxic proteins across genus Lachesis. Comparative venomics revealed the close kinship of Central American L. stenophrys and L. melanocephala and support the elevation of L. acrochorda to species status. Major ontogenetic changes in the toxin composition of L. stenophrys venom involves quantitative changes in the concentration of vasoactive peptides and serine proteinases, which steadily decrease from birth to adulthood, and age-dependent de novo biosynthesis of Gal-lectin and snake venom metalloproteinases (SVMPs). The net result is a shift from a bradykinin-potentiating and C-type natriuretic peptide (BPP/C-NP)-rich and serine proteinase-rich venom in newborns and 2-years-old juveniles to a (PI>PIII) SVMP-rich venom in adults. Notwithstanding minor qualitative and quantitative differences, the venom arsenals of L. melanocephala and L. acrochorda are broadly similar between themselves and also closely mirror those of adult L. stenophrys and L. muta venoms. The high conservation of the overall composition of Central and South American bushmaster venoms provides the ground for rationalizing the "Lachesis syndrome", characterized by vagal syntomatology, sensorial disorders, hematologic, and cardiovascular manifestations, documented in envenomings by different species of this wide-ranging genus. This finding let us predict that monospecific Lachesic antivenoms may exhibit paraspecificity against all congeneric species. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Transcriptome analysis of the venom gland of the scorpion Scorpiops jendeki: implication for the evolution of the scorpion venom arsenal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wu Yingliang

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The family Euscorpiidae, which covers Europe, Asia, Africa, and America, is one of the most widely distributed scorpion groups. However, no studies have been conducted on the venom of a Euscorpiidae species yet. In this work, we performed a transcriptomic approach for characterizing the venom components from a Euscorpiidae scorpion, Scorpiops jendeki. Results There are ten known types of venom peptides and proteins obtained from Scorpiops jendeki. Great diversity is observed in primary sequences of most highly expressed types. The most highly expressed types are cytolytic peptides and serine proteases. Neurotoxins specific for sodium channels, which are major groups of venom components from Buthidae scorpions, are not detected in this study. In addition to those known types of venom peptides and proteins, we also obtain nine atypical types of venom molecules which haven't been observed in any other scorpion species studied to date. Conclusion This work provides the first set of cDNAs from Scorpiops jendeki, and one of the few transcriptomic analyses from a scorpion. This allows the characterization of a large number of venom molecules, belonging to either known or atypical types of scorpion venom peptides and proteins. Besides, our work could provide some clues to the evolution of the scorpion venom arsenal by comparison with venom data from other scorpion lineages.

  2. A Mapping Between Structural and Functional Brain Networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meier, Jil; Tewarie, Prejaas; Hillebrand, Arjan; Douw, Linda; van Dijk, Bob W; Stufflebeam, Steven M; Van Mieghem, Piet

    2016-05-01

    The relationship between structural and functional brain networks is still highly debated. Most previous studies have used a single functional imaging modality to analyze this relationship. In this work, we use multimodal data, from functional MRI, magnetoencephalography, and diffusion tensor imaging, and assume that there exists a mapping between the connectivity matrices of the resting-state functional and structural networks. We investigate this mapping employing group averaged as well as individual data. We indeed find a significantly high goodness of fit level for this structure-function mapping. Our analysis suggests that a functional connection is shaped by all walks up to the diameter in the structural network in both modality cases. When analyzing the inverse mapping, from function to structure, longer walks in the functional network also seem to possess minor influence on the structural connection strengths. Even though similar overall properties for the structure-function mapping are found for different functional modalities, our results indicate that the structure-function relationship is modality dependent.

  3. Substrate recognition by complement convertases revealed in the C5-cobra venom factor complex

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Laursen, Nick Stub; Andersen, Kasper Røjkjær; Braren, Ingke

    2011-01-01

    with a protease subunit (Bb or C2a). We determined the crystal structures of the C3b homologue cobra venom factor (CVF) in complex with C5, and in complex with C5 and the inhibitor SSL7 at 4.3 Å resolution. The structures reveal a parallel two-point attachment between C5 and CVF, where the presence of SSL7 only...

  4. 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.

  5. Study of gamma radiation from {sup 60}Co effects on Apis mellifera venom: biochemical, pharmacological and immunological aspects; Estudo dos efeitos da radiacao gama de {sup 60}Co na peconha de Apis mellifera: aspectos bioquimicos, farmacologicos e imunologicos

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Costa, Helena

    2001-07-01

    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. Ionizing radiation is able to modify molecular structures affecting the biological properties of proteins. It decreases toxic and enzymatic activities and so, it appears promising as a venom detoxification tool. The main objective of this work was to study the effects of gamma radiation on bee venom, regarding biochemical, pharmacological and immunological aspects. Africanized Apis mellifera whole venom (2 mg/ml) in 0.15 M NaCl solution was irradiated with 2 kGy in a {sup 60}Co source. Native and irradiated bee venoms were submitted to high performance size exclusion chromatography (Tosohaas G2000SW column), high performance reversed phase chromatography in a C-18 column under water/acetonitrile gradient, SDS-PAGE. For both venoms studies have been carried out in UV absorption spectrum, protein concentration, hemolytic activity, and PLA{sub 2} activity analysis, lethality assay (LD{sub 50}). Biodistribution studies was carried out after labelling native and irradiated bee venom with {sup 99m}Tc. The results showed that gamma radiation did not change the protein concentration nor its immunogenicity, although it could be observed that irradiated bee venom UV spectrum and SDS-PAGE profile presented differences when compared to native bee venom. This suggests that some structural alterations in bee venom components could have occurred after irradiation. HPLC-RP profiles showed that gamma radiation could have caused conformational changes, such as unfolding of molecule chains, changing their hydrophobic groups exposuring. The hemolytic and the PLA{sub 2} activities of irradiated bee venom were smaller than the native ones. The gamma radiation diminished the toxicity of bee venom, but did not abolish its bioactivity, like hemolysis

  6. Nucleon structure functions, resonance form factors, and duality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Davidovsky, V.V.; Struminsky, B.V.

    2003-01-01

    The behavior of nucleon structure functions in the resonance region is explored. For form factors that describe resonance production, expressions are obtained that are dependent on the photon virtuality Q 2 , which have a correct threshold behavior, and which take into account available experimental data on resonance decay. Resonance contributions to nucleon structure functions are calculated. The resulting expressions are used to investigate quark-hadron duality in electron-nucleon scattering by taking the example of the structure function F 2

  7. Nuclear enhanced power corrections to DIS structure functions

    OpenAIRE

    Guo, Xiaofeng; Qiu, Jianwei; Zhu, Wei

    2001-01-01

    We calculate nuclear enhanced power corrections to structure functions measured in deeply inelastic lepton-nucleus scattering in Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD). We find that the nuclear medium enhanced power corrections at order of $O(\\alpha_s/Q^2)$ enhance the longitudinal structure function $F_L$, and suppress the transverse structure function $F_1$. We demonstrate that strong nuclear effects in $\\sigma_A/\\sigma_D$ and $R_A/R_D$, recently observed by HERMES Collaboration, can be explained in ...

  8. Types and Functions of Coastal Structures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Burcharth, H. F.; A. Hughes, Steven

    2003-01-01

    Coastal structures are used in coastal defence schemes with the objective of preventing shoreline erosion and flooding of the hinterland. Other objectives include sheltering of harbour basins and harbour entrances against waves, stabilization of navigation channels at inlets, and protection...

  9. Structure and function of yeast alcohol dehydrogenase

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    VLADIMIR LESKOVAC

    2000-04-01

    Full Text Available 1. Introduction 2. Isoenzymes of YADH 3. Substrate specificity 4. Kinetic mechanism 5. Primary structure 6. The active site 7. Mutations in the yeast enzyme 8. Chemical mechanism 9. Binding of coenzymes 10. Hydride transfer

  10. Protein Function Prediction Based on Sequence and Structure Information

    KAUST Repository

    Smaili, Fatima Z.

    2016-01-01

    operate. In this master thesis project, we worked on inferring protein functions based on the primary protein sequence. In the approach we follow, 3D models are first constructed using I-TASSER. Functions are then deduced by structurally matching

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  12. Relativistic density functional for nuclear structure

    CERN Document Server

    2016-01-01

    This book aims to provide a detailed introduction to the state-of-the-art covariant density functional theory, which follows the Lorentz invariance from the very beginning and is able to describe nuclear many-body quantum systems microscopically and self-consistently. Covariant density functional theory was introduced in nuclear physics in the 1970s and has since been developed and used to describe the diversity of nuclear properties and phenomena with great success. In order to provide an advanced and updated textbook of covariant density functional theory for graduate students and nuclear physics researchers, this book summarizes the enormous amount of material that has accumulated in the field of covariant density functional theory over the last few decades as well as the latest developments in this area. Moreover, the book contains enough details for readers to follow the formalism and theoretical results, and provides exhaustive references to explore the research literature.

  13. Synthesis, Crystal Structure, Density Function Theory, Molecular ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Tropical Journal of Pharmaceutical Research February 2016; 15 (2): 385-392 ... tested for its antimicrobial activities and computational studies including density function test (DFT) and docking ... agonists [4], selective dopamine D3 and D4 ...

  14. Analysis of Brazilian snake venoms by neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Saiki, M.; Vasconcellos, M.B.A.; Rogero, J.R.; Cruz, M.C.G.

    1991-01-01

    Instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA) has been applied to multielemental determinations of Brazilian snake venoms from the species: Bothrops jararacussu, Crotalus durissus terrificus and Bothrops jararaca. Concentrations of Br, Ca, Cl, Cs, K, Mg, Na, Rb, Sb, Se and Zn have been determined in lyophilized venoms by using short and long irradiations in the IEA-RI nuclear reactor under a thermal neutron flux of 10 11 to 10 13 n · cm -2 · s -1 . The reference materials NIST Bovine Liver 1577 and IUPAC Bowen's Kale were also analyzed simultaneously with the venoms to evaluate the accuracy and the reproducibility of the method. The concentrations of the elements found in snake venoms from different species were compared. The Crotalus durissus terrificus venoms presented high concentration of Se but low concentrations of Zn when these results are compared with those obtained from genera Bothrops venoms. (auth