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Open AccessArticle

Venom Diversity and Evolution in the Most Divergent Cone Snail Genus Profundiconus

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Department of Biology and Biotechnologies “Charles Darwin”, Sapienza University of Rome, 00185 Rome, Italy
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Department of Biology and Evolution of Marine Organisms, Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn, Villa Comunale, 80121 Naples, Italy
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University of Montpellier, 34095 Montpellier, France
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Institut Systématique Evolution Biodiversité (ISYEB), Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle, CNRS, Sorbonne Université, EPHE, Université des Antillles, 57 rue Cuvier, CP 26, 75005 Paris, France
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A.N. Severtzov Institute of Ecology and Evolution, Russian Academy of Sciences, Leninski prospect 33, 119071 Moscow, Russian
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Department of Chemistry, Hunter College, CUNY, New York, NY 10065, USA
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Department of Invertebrate Zoology, The American Museum of Natural History, New York, NY 10024, USA
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Biology, Biochemistry, and Chemistry programs of The CUNY Graduate Center, New York, NY 10016, USA
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Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Toxins 2019, 11(11), 623; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11110623
Received: 7 October 2019 / Revised: 24 October 2019 / Accepted: 24 October 2019 / Published: 28 October 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Venoms)
Profundiconus is the most divergent cone snail genus and its unique phylogenetic position, sister to the rest of the family Conidae, makes it a key taxon for examining venom evolution and diversity. Venom gland and foot transcriptomes of Profundiconus cf. vaubani and Profundiconus neocaledonicus were de novo assembled, annotated, and analyzed for differential expression. One hundred and thirty-seven venom components were identified from P. cf. vaubani and 82 from P. neocaledonicus, with only four shared by both species. The majority of the transcript diversity was composed of putative peptides, including conotoxins, profunditoxins, turripeptides, insulin, and prohormone-4. However, there were also a significant percentage of other putative venom components such as chymotrypsin and L-rhamnose-binding lectin. The large majority of conotoxins appeared to be from new gene superfamilies, three of which are highly different from previously reported venom peptide toxins. Their low conotoxin diversity and the type of insulin found suggested that these species, for which no ecological information are available, have a worm or molluscan diet associated with a narrow dietary breadth. Our results indicate that Profundiconus venom is highly distinct from that of other cone snails, and therefore important for examining venom evolution in the Conidae family. View Full-Text
Keywords: Conidae; conotoxins; turripeptides; transcriptome; venom gland Conidae; conotoxins; turripeptides; transcriptome; venom gland
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MDPI and ACS Style

Fassio, G.; Modica, M.V.; Mary, L.; Zaharias, P.; Fedosov, A.E.; Gorson, J.; Kantor, Y.I.; Holford, M.; Puillandre, N. Venom Diversity and Evolution in the Most Divergent Cone Snail Genus Profundiconus. Toxins 2019, 11, 623.

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