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A review on spider toxins a useful source of pharmacological peptides

Author(s): Ravi Kant Upadhyay*, Shoeb Ahmad

Journal: Journal of Pharmacy Research
ISSN 0974-6943

Volume: 4;
Issue: 4;
Start page: 1169;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: Spider venom | toxin | ion channel blockers | neurotoxin | latrotoxin | acid-sensing ion channels

Spider venoms are complex mixtures or cocktails of toxic proteins and peptides that have been evolved during very long evolution. It is used by spiders for prey capture and/or defense. Spider venom shows variable pharmacological activity and affect various cell targets due to presence of diverse lethal and toxic peptides. It activate excitatory ion channels present on somatosensory neurons and produce a noxious sensation in mammals. Spider toxins cause reversible blockage of cation selective quisqualic acid sensitive glutamate receptor in insects and inhibit associated ion channels in the vertebrate central nervous system. Spider toxins inhibit voltage-activated potassium channels by binding to a critical helix-turn-helix motif and partition into membranes to bind the paddle motif and alter the structure and function of different types of ion channels. Besides this, spider toxins show multiple local and systemic effects like severe pain, inflammation, neural, renal and cardiac toxicity. Due to their selective binding to ion channels toxin peptides can be used as potent molecular probes to determine structure and function of ion channels. Further, studies on toxin-receptor interactions can be used for drug development mainly peptide therapeutics. In present review article pharmacological effects of various spider toxins and their mechanisms of action are explained in detail.
Affiliate Program     

Tango Jona
Tangokurs Rapperswil-Jona