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Mar. Drugs 2006, 4(3), 82-118; doi:10.3390/md403082

Ciguatoxins: Cyclic Polyether Modulators of Voltage-gated Iion Channel Function

1
Neurotoxin Research Group, Department of Health Sciences, University of Technology, Sydney, PO Box 123, Broadway NSW 2007, Australia
2
Institute for Molecular Bioscience, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, QLD 4072, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 21 December 2005 / Accepted: 9 March 2006 / Published: 6 April 2006
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Drugs and Ion Channels)
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Abstract

Ciguatoxins are cyclic polyether toxins, derived from marine dinoflagellates, which are responsible for the symptoms of ciguatera poisoning. Ingestion of tropical and subtropical fin fish contaminated by ciguatoxins results in an illness characterised by neurological, cardiovascular and gastrointestinal disorders. The pharmacology of ciguatoxins is characterised by their ability to cause persistent activation of voltage-gated sodium channels, to increase neuronal excitability and neurotransmitter release, to impair synaptic vesicle recycling, and to cause cell swelling. It is these effects, in combination with an action to block voltage-gated potassium channels at high doses, which are believed to underlie the complex of symptoms associated with ciguatera. This review examines the sources, structures and pharmacology of ciguatoxins. In particular, attention is placed on their cellular modes of actions to modulate voltage-gated ion channels and other Na+-dependent mechanisms in numerous cell types and to current approaches for detection and treatment of ciguatera.
Keywords: ciguatoxin; dinoflagellate; Gambierdiscus toxicus; voltage-gated sodium channel; voltage-channel potassium channel ciguatoxin; dinoflagellate; Gambierdiscus toxicus; voltage-gated sodium channel; voltage-channel potassium channel
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Nicholson, G.M.; Lewis, R.J. Ciguatoxins: Cyclic Polyether Modulators of Voltage-gated Iion Channel Function. Mar. Drugs 2006, 4, 82-118.

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