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Causes and consequences of snake venom variation

Casewell, Nicholas ORCID:, Jackson, TNW, Laustsen, AH and Sunagar, K (2020) 'Causes and consequences of snake venom variation'. Trends in Pharmacological Sciences, Vol 41, Issue 8, pp. 570-581.

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Snake venoms are mixtures of toxins that vary extensively between and within snake species. This variability has serious consequences for the management of the world’s 1.8 million annual snakebite victims. Advances in ‘omic’ technologies have empowered toxinologists to comprehensively characterise snake venom compositions, unravel the molecular mechanisms that underpin venom variation, and elucidate the ensuing functional consequences. In this review, we describe how such mechanistic processes have resulted in suites of toxin isoforms that cause diverse pathologies in human snakebite victims, and we detail how variation in venom composition can result in treatment failure. Finally, we outline current therapeutic approaches designed to circumvent venom variation and deliver next-generation treatments for the world’s most lethal neglected tropical disease.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: QU Biochemistry > Genetics > QU 450 General Works
QW Microbiology and Immunology > Antigens and Antibodies. Toxins and Antitoxins > QW 630 Toxins. Antitoxins
WD Disorders of Systemic, Metabolic or Environmental Origin, etc > Animal Poisons > WD 410 Reptiles
Faculty: Department: Biological Sciences > Department of Tropical Disease Biology
Digital Object Identifer (DOI):
Depositing User: Mary Creegan
Date Deposited: 22 Jun 2020 12:57
Last Modified: 12 Aug 2020 10:45


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