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James Starrett, Shahan Derkarabetian, Marshal Hedin, Robert W Bryson, John E McCormack, Brant C Faircloth
Arachnida is an ancient, diverse, and ecologically important animal group that contains a number of species of interest for medical, agricultural, and engineering applications. Despite their importance, many aspects of the arachnid tree of life remain unresolved, hindering comparative approaches to arachnid biology. Biologists have made considerable efforts to resolve the arachnid phylogeny; yet, limited and challenging morphological characters, as well as a dearth of genetic resources, have hindered progress...
October 21, 2016: Molecular Ecology Resources
Daryl C Yang, Jennifer R Deuis, Daniel Dashevsky, James Dobson, Timothy N W Jackson, Andreas Brust, Bing Xie, Ivan Koludarov, Jordan Debono, Iwan Hendrikx, Wayne C Hodgson, Peter Josh, Amanda Nouwens, Gregory J Baillie, Timothy J C Bruxner, Paul F Alewood, Kelvin Kok Peng Lim, Nathaniel Frank, Irina Vetter, Bryan G Fry
Millions of years of evolution have fine-tuned the ability of venom peptides to rapidly incapacitate both prey and potential predators. Toxicofera reptiles are characterized by serous-secreting mandibular or maxillary glands with heightened levels of protein expression. These glands are the core anatomical components of the toxicoferan venom system, which exists in myriad points along an evolutionary continuum. Neofunctionalisation of toxins is facilitated by positive selection at functional hotspots on the ancestral protein and venom proteins have undergone dynamic diversification in helodermatid and varanid lizards as well as advanced snakes...
October 18, 2016: Toxins
Emmanuel Bourinet, Gerald W Zamponi
Venoms from various predatory species, such as fish hunting mollusks scorpions, snakes and arachnids contain a large spectrum of toxins that include blockers of voltage-gated calcium channels. These peptide blockers act by two principal manners - physical occlusion of the pore and prevention of activation gating. Many of the calcium channel-blocking peptides have evolved to tightly occupy their binding pocket on the principal pore forming subunit of the channel, often rendering block poorly reversible. Moreover, several of the best characterized blocking peptides have developed a high degree of channel subtype selectivity...
October 15, 2016: Neuropharmacology
Ehsan Valavi, Parisa Amuri, Ali Ahmadzadeh, Bahman Cheraghian, Ehsan Ahankoob
Acute kidney injury (AKI) is frequently seen in Hemiscorpius lepturus scorpion stung children. We have previously reported several victims with hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) and a disintegrin and metalloproteinase with a thrombospondin type 1 motif, member 13 deficiency. Hence, we conducted this study to identify predictive factors and clinical features of AKI in H. lepturus scorpion stung patients. We included all 215 H. lepturus scorpion stung children with no previous renal diseases in two groups (with and without AKI) and compared them based on their clinical and laboratory findings...
September 2016: Saudi Journal of Kidney Diseases and Transplantation
Madhumita Sinha, Dan Quan, Fred W McDonald, André Valdez
OBJECTIVE: Scorpion antivenom was recently approved for use in patients with clinically significant scorpion envenomation in the United States; no formal economic analysis on its impact on cost of management has been performed. METHODS: Three different strategies of management of scorpion envenomation with systemic neurotoxic symptoms in children were compared for cost minimization from a societal perspective. In strategy I, patients were managed with supportive care only without antivenom...
October 4, 2016: Pediatric Emergency Care
Schehrazad Selmane, Mohamed L'Hadj
OBJECTIVES: This study aims to highlight some epidemiological aspects of scorpion envenomations, to analyse and interpret the recorded data, and to develop a forecasting model for scorpion sting cases in Biskra province which records the highest number of scorpion stings at national level. METHODS: In addition to the epidemiological profile of scorpion stings that occurred throughout the year 2013, we carried out the Box-Jenkins approach to fit a seasonal autoregressive integrated moving average (SARIMA) model to the monthly recorded scorpion sting cases in Biskra from 2000 to 2012...
October 14, 2016: Epidemiology and Health
P K Ramalingam, K Gayathri, Rpsp Santhakumar, B V Manjunath, N Karuppusamy, B Vetriveeran, S Selvamani, P Vishnuram, Kumar Natarajan
A 50 yr old female developed transient ST segment elevation due to an acute coronary vasospasm following a Indian Red Scorpion sting and the angiogram revealed 50% occlusion in right coronary artery (RCA).The possible mechanism is that the sympathetic over-activity could have aggravated the occlusion in the RCA as the RCA is more commonly prone to spasm compared to the other coronary arteries.
May 2016: Journal of the Association of Physicians of India
Himmatrao Saluba Bawaskar
Daily, I receive 3-4 social media messages regarding the diagnosis, management or clinical dilemmas of acute timelimiting medical emergencies due to snake bite and scorpion sting poisoning. I respond to the caller who has shared clinical signs and symptoms. I also follow up on the progress of the victim. I send pdf files of my publications on scorpion and snake bite.
October 2016: Indian Journal of Medical Ethics
David M Housley, Gary D Housley, Michael J Liddell, Ernest A Jennings
This review categorizes functionally validated actions of defined scorpion toxin (SCTX) neuropeptides across ion channel subclasses, highlighting key trends in this rapidly evolving field. Scorpion envenomation is a common event in many tropical and subtropical countries, with neuropharmacological actions, particularly autonomic nervous system modulation, causing significant mortality. The primary active agents within scorpion venoms are a diverse group of small neuropeptides that elicit specific potent actions across a wide range of ion channel classes...
October 8, 2016: Neuropharmacology
Abdulrahman K Al-Asmari, Anvarbatcha Riyasdeen, Rajamohamed Abbasmanthiri, Mohammed Arshaduddin, Fahad Ali Al-Harthi
OBJECTIVES: The defective apoptosis is believed to play a major role in the survival and proliferation of neoplastic cells. Hence, the induction of apoptosis in cancer cells is one of the targets for cancer treatment. Researchers are considering scorpion venom as a potent natural source for cancer treatment because it contains many bioactive compounds. The main objective of the current study is to evaluate the anticancer property of Androctonus bicolor scorpion venom on cancer cells. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Scorpions were milked by electrical stimulation of telsons and lyophilized...
September 2016: Indian Journal of Pharmacology
Caroline M Cremonez, Mohitosh Maiti, Steve Peigneur, Juliana Silva Cassoli, Alexandre A A Dutra, Etienne Waelkens, Eveline Lescrinier, Piet Herdewijn, Maria Elena de Lima, Adriano M C Pimenta, Eliane C Arantes, Jan Tytgat
To date, several families of peptide toxins specifically interacting with ion channels in scorpion venom have been described. One of these families comprise peptide toxins (called KTxs), known to modulate potassium channels. Thus far, 202 KTxs have been reported, belonging to several subfamilies of KTxs (called α, β, γ, κ, δ, and λ-KTxs). Here we report on a previously described orphan toxin from Tityus serrulatus venom, named Ts11. We carried out an in-depth structure-function analysis combining 3D structure elucidation of Ts11 and electrophysiological characterization of the toxin...
September 30, 2016: Toxins
K N Santhosh, D Pavana, N B Thippeswamy
Although immunomodulatory property and many other pharmaceutical applications of scorpion venom have been addressed before, no studies were reported about its application as a neuroimmunomodulator at therapeutic dose. In this study, we conceptualized the property of scorpion venom, capable of inducing the acute pain and neurotoxicity can cause acute stress resulting in the modulation of immune cells through HPA axis. The whole venom from Hottentotta rugiscutis, a widely seen scorpion in the region of eastern Karnataka, was extracted and injected a single dose of 1 mg/kg b...
October 4, 2016: Toxicon: Official Journal of the International Society on Toxinology
Muriel Primon-Barros, Alexandre José Macedo
Microbial infections affect people worldwide, causing diseases with significant impact on public health, indicating the need for research and development of new antimicrobial agents. Animal venoms represent a vast and largely unexploited source of biologically active molecules with attractive candidates for the development of novel therapeutics. Venoms consist of complex mixtures of molecules, including antimicrobial peptides (AMPs). Since the discovery of AMPs, they have been studied as promising new antimicrobial drugs...
September 30, 2016: Current Topics in Medicinal Chemistry
N Osnaya-Romero, L C Acosta-Saavedra, R Goytia-Acevedo, I Lares-Asseff, G Basurto-Celaya, G Perez-Guille, L D Possani, E S Calderón-Aranda
The scorpion Centruroides limpidus limpidus (C.l.l.) is endemic in México, producing hundreds of accidents in humans; children being one of the most susceptible targets. Few studies reported that severe envenoming by scorpion venom induces cardiac damage and electrolytes abnormalities in children, but the relationship of envenoming severity and toxic blood levels is unknown. The aim of this study was to determine the relationship among clinical status of envenoming, serum electrolyte, electrocardiographic abnormalities, and serum toxin levels in 44 children stung by scorpion over a period of 6 months in the State of Morelos, Mexico...
September 29, 2016: Toxicon: Official Journal of the International Society on Toxinology
Bin Wu, Yan Zhu, Jian Shi, Jie Tao, Yonghua Ji
BmP02, a short-chain peptide with 28 residues from the venom of Chinese scorpion Buthus martensi Karsch, has been reported to inhibit the transient outward potassium currents (Ito) in rat ventricular muscle cells. However, it remains unclear whether BmP02 modulates the Kv4.2 channel, one of the main contributors to Ito. The present study investigated the effects of BmP02 on Kv4.2 kinetics and its underlying molecular mechanism. The electrophysiological recordings showed that the inactivation of Kv4.2 expressed in HEK293T cells was significantly delayed by BmP02 in a dose-response manner with EC50 of ~850 nM while the peak current, activation and voltage-dependent inactivation of Kv4...
2016: Toxins
Mohamed Amiche
The search for new bioactive molecules that could be used in therapeutics is a major public health issue, particularly in the treatment of certain diseases such as cancer. In this context the exploration of the venom of animals (snakes, amphibians, cones, scorpions, insects...) that produce molecules of various structures and biological activities, is a very promising direction. Research in this area led to the discovery of neuropeptides, hormones, toxins, antimicrobial peptides and other extremely potent mediators...
2016: Biologie Aujourd'hui
Zheng-Wei Li, Bin Wu, Pin Ye, Zhi-Yong Tan, Yong-Hua Ji
BACKGROUND: A previous study found that brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) inhibited inflammatory pain via activating its receptor natriuretic peptide receptor A (NPRA) in nociceptive sensory neurons. A recent study found that functional NPRA is expressed in almost all the trigeminal ganglion (TG) neurons at membrane level suggesting a potentially important role for BNP in migraine pathophysiology. METHODS: An inflammatory pain model was produced by subcutaneous injection of BmK I, a sodium channel-specific modulator from venom of Chinese scorpion Buthus martensi Karsch...
December 2016: Journal of Headache and Pain
Houcemeddine Othman, Silke Andrea Wieninger, Mohamed ElAyeb, Michael Nilges, Najet Srairi-Abid
Glioblastoma is the deadliest type of brain cancer. Treatment could target the Matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2), which is known to be involved in the invasion process of glioblastoma cells. But current available inhibitors are not selective to MMP-2 due to their interaction with the catalytic binding site, which is highly conserved in all MMPs structures. Interestingly, members of the chloride channel blocker scorpion toxins, such as chlorotoxin (ClTx) and AaCTx, inhibit glioblastoma cell invasion and show a promising therapeutic potential...
September 28, 2016: Journal of Biomolecular Structure & Dynamics
Shangfei Zhang, Limei Zhu, Jie Yu, Jun Xu, Bin Gao, Changlin Zhou, Shunyi Zhu
Grafting of exogenous bioactive sites or functional motifs onto structurally stable scaffolds to gain new functions represents an important research direction in protein engineering. Some engineered proteins have been developed into therapeutic drugs. MeuNaTxα-3 (abbreviated as MT-3) is a newly characterized scorpion sodium channel toxin-like peptide isolated from the venom of the scorpion Mesobuthus eupeus, which contains a rigid scaffold highly similar to classical scorpion sodium channel toxins and an extension of eight amino acids in its J-loop region...
September 26, 2016: Protein Engineering, Design & Selection: PEDS
Guilherme Honda de Oliveira, Felipe Augusto Cerni, Iara Aimê Cardoso, Eliane Candiani Arantes, Manuela Berto Pucca
BACKGROUND: In Brazil, accidents with venomous animals are considered a public health problem. Tityus serrulatus (Ts), popularly known as the yellow scorpion, is most frequently responsible for the severe accidents in the country. Ts envenoming can cause several signs and symptoms classified according to their clinical manifestations as mild, moderate or severe. Furthermore, the victims usually present biochemical alterations, including hyperglycemia. Nevertheless, Ts envenoming and its induced hyperglycemia were never studied or documented in a patient with diabetes mellitus (DM)...
2016: Journal of Venomous Animals and Toxins Including Tropical Diseases
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