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Mark Little, Richard Fitzpatrick, Jamie Seymour
Currently the Australian Resuscitation Council (ARC) recommends dousing with vinegar followed by ice as first aid for jellyfish stings in tropical Australia, with limited evidence to support this recommendation (Li et al., 2013). We report our successful experience in using hot water immersion as first aid in treating two people stung by venomous tropical Australian jellyfish, one by Chironex fleckeri and one by Carukia barnesi.
November 2016: Toxicon: Official Journal of the International Society on Toxinology
John K Keesing, Joanna Strzelecki, Marcus Stowar, Mary Wakeford, Karen J Miller, Lisa-Ann Gershwin, Dongyan Liu
Box jellyfish cause human fatalities and have a life cycle and habit associated with shallow waters (<5 m) in mangrove creeks, coastal beaches, embayments. In north-western Australia, tow video and epibenthic sled surveys discovered large numbers (64 in a 1500 m tow or 0.05 m(-2)) of Chironex sp. very near to the benthos (<50 cm) at depths of 39-56 m. This is the first record of a population of box jellyfish closely associated with the benthos at such depths. Chironex were not widespread, occurring only in 2 of 33 tow videos and 3 of 41 epibenthic sleds spread over 2000 km(2)...
February 29, 2016: Scientific Reports
Dalia Ponce, Diane L Brinkman, Karen Luna-Ramírez, Christine E Wright, Juan José Dorantes-Aranda
The venoms of jellyfish cause toxic effects in diverse biological systems that can trigger local and systemic reactions. In this study, the cytotoxic and cytolytic effects of Chrysaora quinquecirrha and Chironex fleckeri venoms were assessed and compared using three in vitro assays. Venoms from both species were cytotoxic to fish gill cells and rat cardiomyocytes, and cytolytic in sheep erythrocytes. Both venoms decreased cell viability in a concentration-dependent manner; however, the greatest difference in venom potencies was observed in the fish gill cell line, wherein C...
November 2015: Toxicon: Official Journal of the International Society on Toxinology
Ryuju Kitatani, Mayu Yamada, Michiya Kamio, Hiroshi Nagai
A large number of humans are stung by jellyfish all over the world. The stings cause acute pain followed by persistent pain and local inflammation. Harmful jellyfish species typically cause strong pain, whereas harmless jellyfish cause subtle or no pain. Jellyfish sting humans by injecting a tubule, contained in the nematocyst, the stinging organ of jellyfish. The tubule penetrates into the skin leading to venom injection. The detailed morphology of the nematocyst tubule and molecular structure of the venom in the nematocyst has been reported; however, the mechanism responsible for the difference in pain that is caused by harmful and harmless jellyfish sting has not yet been explored or explained...
2015: PloS One
Takumi Horiike, Hiroshi Nagai, Seiichi Kitani
BACKGROUND: Jellyfish stings cause painful, papular-urticarial eruptions due to the immediate allergic, acute toxic and persistent inflammatory responses. In spite of many marine accidents and their economic impact, modes of first-aid treatment remain conventional and specific allergen and medical treatment are not yet available. The purpose of this study was to define the specific allergen of the box jellyfish Chironex yamaguchii and to study the precise mechanism of the resulting dermatitis...
2015: International Archives of Allergy and Immunology
Diane L Brinkman, Xinying Jia, Jeremy Potriquet, Dhirendra Kumar, Debasis Dash, David Kvaskoff, Jason Mulvenna
BACKGROUND: The box jellyfish, Chironex fleckeri, is the largest and most dangerous cubozoan jellyfish to humans. It produces potent and rapid-acting venom and its sting causes severe localized and systemic effects that are potentially life-threatening. In this study, a combined transcriptomic and proteomic approach was used to identify C. fleckeri proteins that elicit toxic effects in envenoming. RESULTS: More than 40,000,000 Illumina reads were used to de novo assemble ∼ 34,000 contiguous cDNA sequences and ∼ 20,000 proteins were predicted based on homology searches, protein motifs, gene ontology and biological pathway mapping...
2015: BMC Genomics
Susumu Ohtsuka, Ephrime Metillo, Geoffrey A Boxshall
Paramacrochiron chironecicola n. sp. (Copepoda: Cyclopoida: Macrochironidae) is described from the highly venomous box jellyfish Chironex sp. collected from Malampaya Sound, Palawan Island, The Philippines. This is the first record of copepods associated with cubozoan medusae, although other cnidarian groups such scyphozoans, hydrozoans, and anthozoans are common hosts for symbiotic copepods. The infection sites were on the subumbrella, pedalium, and rhopalium, but also rarely on the adradial furrow. The new species is distinguished from other congeners by a combination of the following features: (1) the fifth pedigerous somite dorsally covering the anterior part of the female genital double-somite; (2) the fine structures of the antenna (relative lengths of segments) and maxilliped (positions of terminal elements) of the female; (3) the relatively long outer spines on the exopodal segments of legs 1-4; (4) the relatively long and thick female leg 5 bearing a long protopodal seta which reaches to the distal margin of the exopod; (5) the relatively short caudal ramus in the female; and (6) the plump prosome and short urosome in the male...
April 2015: Zoological Science
Mahdokht Jouiaei, Nicholas R Casewell, Angel A Yanagihara, Amanda Nouwens, Bronwen W Cribb, Darryl Whitehead, Timothy N W Jackson, Syed A Ali, Simon C Wagstaff, Ivan Koludarov, Paul Alewood, Jay Hansen, Bryan G Fry
Cnidarian venom research has lagged behind other toxinological fields due to technical difficulties in recovery of the complex venom from the microscopic nematocysts. Here we report a newly developed rapid, repeatable and cost effective technique of venom preparation, using ethanol to induce nematocyst discharge and to recover venom contents in one step. Our model species was the Australian box jellyfish (Chironex fleckeri), which has a notable impact on public health. By utilizing scanning electron microscopy and light microscopy, we examined nematocyst external morphology before and after ethanol treatment and verified nematocyst discharge...
March 2015: Toxins
Athena Andreosso, Michael J Smout, Jamie E Seymour
BACKGROUND: The effectiveness of the currently available box jellyfish (Chironex fleckeri) antivenom has been subject of debate for many years. To assess whether the box jellyfish antivenom has the ability to attenuate venom-induced damage at cellular level, the present study analyzed the dose and time dependence of the antivenom in a cell-based assay. METHODS: Different doses of antivenom were added to venom and subsequently administered to cells and the cell index was measured using xCelligence Technology (ACEA Biosciences)...
2014: Journal of Venomous Animals and Toxins Including Tropical Diseases
D Mebs
BACKGROUND: Jellyfish are distributed worldwide; they cause local skin injuries upon contact which are often followed by systemic signs of envenoming. OBJECTIVES: Which jellyfish species are of medical importance, which skin reactions and systemic symptoms occur, which first-aid measures and treatment options exist? METHODS: Review of the medical literature and discussion of first-aid and therapeutic options. RESULTS: Jellyfish capable of causing skin injuries occur in almost all oceans...
October 2014: Der Hautarzt; Zeitschrift Für Dermatologie, Venerologie, und Verwandte Gebiete
Philippa Welfare, Mark Little, Peter Pereira, Jamie Seymour
OBJECTIVE: To determine the effect acetic acid (vinegar) has on discharged nematocysts in a simulated sting from Chironex fleckeri. METHOD: This research was performed in 2 parts: 1 C. fleckeri tentacles placed on amniotic membrane were electrically stimulated, and venom washings collected before and after application of vinegar. Lyophilised venom washings were run through a fast-performance protein liquid chromatography column to confirm the venom profile, with a quantitative measure of venom from each washing calculated using UNICORN™ software...
March 2014: Diving and Hyperbaric Medicine: the Journal of the South Pacific Underwater Medicine Society
Stephanie Chaousis, Michael Smout, David Wilson, Alex Loukas, Jason Mulvenna, Jamie Seymour
The vertebrate cardiotoxic components of the venom produced by the Australian box jellyfish, Chironex fleckeri, have not previously been isolated. We have uncovered for the first time, three distinct cytotoxic crude fractions from within the vertebrate cardiotoxic peak of C. fleckeri venom by monitoring viability of human muscle cells with an impedance based assay (ACEA xCELLigence system) measuring cell detachment as cytotoxicity which was correlated with a reduction in cell metabolism using a cell proliferation (MTS) assay...
March 2014: Toxicon: Official Journal of the International Society on Toxinology
Diane L Brinkman, Nicki Konstantakopoulos, Bernie V McInerney, Jason Mulvenna, Jamie E Seymour, Geoffrey K Isbister, Wayne C Hodgson
The box jellyfish Chironex fleckeri produces extremely potent and rapid-acting venom that is harmful to humans and lethal to prey. Here, we describe the characterization of two C. fleckeri venom proteins, CfTX-A (∼40 kDa) and CfTX-B (∼42 kDa), which were isolated from C. fleckeri venom using size exclusion chromatography and cation exchange chromatography. Full-length cDNA sequences encoding CfTX-A and -B and a third putative toxin, CfTX-Bt, were subsequently retrieved from a C. fleckeri tentacle cDNA library...
February 21, 2014: Journal of Biological Chemistry
Peter Pereira, Jamie E Seymour
Although Chironex fleckeri and Carukia barnesi cause significant human envenomation, research into their effects in human models or human cells has been limited. In this in vitro study we have presented data that shows that although C. fleckeri is highly cytotoxic to human cardiac and skeletal muscle cells, C. barnesi is not cytotoxic at all concentrations tested to both cardiac and skeletal muscles cells. We also demonstrate that in vitro C. fleckeri venom cardiocytotoxic activity is significantly attenuated when heated to 44 °C for 20 min...
December 15, 2013: Toxicon: Official Journal of the International Society on Toxinology
Sean P Colin, John H Costello, Kakani Katija, Jamie Seymour, Kristen Kiefer
Evolutionary constraints which limit the forces produced during bell contractions of medusae affect the overall medusan morphospace such that jet propulsion is limited to only small medusae. Cubomedusae, which often possess large prolate bells and are thought to swim via jet propulsion, appear to violate the theoretical constraints which determine the medusan morphospace. To examine propulsion by cubomedusae, we quantified size related changes in wake dynamics, bell shape, swimming and turning kinematics of two species of cubomedusae, Chironex fleckeri and Chiropsella bronzie...
2013: PloS One
Angel A Yanagihara, Ralph V Shohet
Chironex fleckeri (Australian box jellyfish) stings can cause acute cardiovascular collapse and death. We developed methods to recover venom with high specific activity, and evaluated the effects of both total venom and constituent porins at doses equivalent to lethal envenomation. Marked potassium release occurred within 5 min and hemolysis within 20 min in human red blood cells (RBC) exposed to venom or purified venom porin. Electron microscopy revealed abundant ~12-nm transmembrane pores in RBC exposed to purified venom porins...
2012: PloS One
Diane L Brinkman, Ammar Aziz, Alex Loukas, Jeremy Potriquet, Jamie Seymour, Jason Mulvenna
The nematocyst is a complex intracellular structure unique to Cnidaria. When triggered to discharge, the nematocyst explosively releases a long spiny, tubule that delivers an often highly venomous mixture of components. The box jellyfish, Chironex fleckeri, produces exceptionally potent and rapid-acting venom and its stings to humans cause severe localized and systemic effects that are potentially life-threatening. In an effort to identify toxins that could be responsible for the serious health effects caused by C...
2012: PloS One
S McClounan, J Seymour
This is the first study to explore venom and cnidome variation of individual cubomedusae, Chironex fleckeri, of different ages and from different regional locations in relation to feeding ecology. As medusae matured the proportion of mastigophores (those nematocysts containing the lethal venom component) in the cnidome increased, along with proportion of the vertebrate toxic fraction, in the venom profile. This switch in cnidome and venom occurred at the seven to ten tentacle stage. Whole venom was found to be toxic specifically to vertebrate cardiac cells, as opposed to vertebrate skeletal cells, and dose dependent, along with the vertebrate toxic fraction...
December 15, 2012: Toxicon: Official Journal of the International Society on Toxinology
Silvia L A Saggiomo, Jamie E Seymour
An investigation into the cardiotoxic effects in human cardiomyocytes of different fractions (as produced from an FPLC) of the venom from Chironex fleckeri showed that whole venom caused cardiac cell death in minutes, measured as cell detachment using xCELLigence technology. However, only one fraction of the venom was responsible for this effect. When all extracted venoms were recombined a similar result was seen for the toxic fraction, however these effects were slower than unfractionated venom alone even though the concentrations were similar...
September 1, 2012: Toxicon: Official Journal of the International Society on Toxinology
Matthew Gordon, Jamie Seymour
Despite the worldwide distribution, toxicity and commercial, industrial and medical impacts jellyfish present, many aspects of their ecology remain poorly understood. Quantified here are important ecological parameters of Chironex fleckeri medusae, contributing not only to the understanding of an understudied taxon, the cubozoa, but also to the broader understanding of jellyfish ecology. C. fleckeri medusae were collected across seven seasons (1999, 2000, 2003, 2005-07 and 2010), with growth rates, temporal variation in the medusae season onset and differences in population structure between estuarine and coastal habitats quantified...
2012: PloS One
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