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Spider-Venom Peptides as Bioinsecticides
Neurotoxin Research Group, School of Medical & Molecular Biosciences, University of Technology, Sydney, Broadway NSW 2007, Australia
Institute for Molecular Bioscience, The University of Queensland, St Lucia, Queensland, 4072, Australia
These authors contributed equally to this work.
* Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 31 January 2012; in revised form: 7 March 2012 / Accepted: 15 March 2012 / Published: 22 March 2012
Abstract: Over 10,000 arthropod species are currently considered to be pest organisms. They are estimated to contribute to the destruction of ~14% of the world’s annual crop production and transmit many pathogens. Presently, arthropod pests of agricultural and health significance are controlled predominantly through the use of chemical insecticides. Unfortunately, the widespread use of these agrochemicals has resulted in genetic selection pressure that has led to the development of insecticide-resistant arthropods, as well as concerns over human health and the environment. Bioinsecticides represent a new generation of insecticides that utilise organisms or their derivatives (e.g., transgenic plants, recombinant baculoviruses, toxin-fusion proteins and peptidomimetics) and show promise as environmentally-friendly alternatives to conventional agrochemicals. Spider-venom peptides are now being investigated as potential sources of bioinsecticides. With an estimated 100,000 species, spiders are one of the most successful arthropod predators. Their venom has proven to be a rich source of hyperstable insecticidal mini-proteins that cause insect paralysis or lethality through the modulation of ion channels, receptors and enzymes. Many newly characterized insecticidal spider toxins target novel sites in insects. Here we review the structure and pharmacology of these toxins and discuss the potential of this vast peptide library for the discovery of novel bioinsecticides.
Keywords: spider venom; peptide; insecticidal; bioinsecticides; cystine knot; pest control
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Cite This Article
MDPI and ACS Style
Windley, M.J.; Herzig, V.; Dziemborowicz, S.A.; Hardy, M.C.; King, G.F.; Nicholson, G.M. Spider-Venom Peptides as Bioinsecticides. Toxins 2012, 4, 191-227.
Windley MJ, Herzig V, Dziemborowicz SA, Hardy MC, King GF, Nicholson GM. Spider-Venom Peptides as Bioinsecticides. Toxins. 2012; 4(3):191-227.
Windley, Monique J.; Herzig, Volker; Dziemborowicz, Sławomir A.; Hardy, Margaret C.; King, Glenn F.; Nicholson, Graham M. 2012. "Spider-Venom Peptides as Bioinsecticides." Toxins 4, no. 3: 191-227.