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Isolation and Characterization of Insecticidal Toxins from the Venom of the North African Scorpion, Buthacus leptochelys

1
Division of Applied Life Sciences, Graduate School of Agriculture, Kyoto University, Kyoto 606-8502, Japan
2
Zoology Department, Al-Azhar University, Assuit 71524, Egypt
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Toxins 2019, 11(4), 236; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11040236
Received: 29 March 2019 / Revised: 16 April 2019 / Accepted: 22 April 2019 / Published: 25 April 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Arthropod Venom Components and Their Potential Usage)
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Abstract

Various bioactive peptides have been identified in scorpion venom, but there are many scorpion species whose venom has not been investigated. In this study, we characterized venom components of the North African scorpion, Buthacus leptochelys, by mass spectrometric analysis and evaluated their insect toxicity. This is the first report of chemical and biological characterization of the B. leptochelys venom. LC/MS analysis detected at least 148 components in the venom. We isolated four peptides that show insect toxicity (Bl-1, Bl-2, Bl-3, and Bl-4) through bioassay-guided HPLC fractionation. These toxins were found to be similar to scorpion α- and β-toxins based on their N-terminal sequences. Among them, the complete primary structure of Bl-1 was determined by combination of Edman degradation and MS/MS analysis. Bl-1 is composed of 67 amino acid residues and crosslinked with four disulfide bonds. Since Bl-1 shares high sequence similarity with α-like toxins, it is likely that it acts on Na+ channels of both insects and mammals. View Full-Text
Keywords: scorpion venom; insecticidal peptide; mass spectrometric analysis; de novo sequencing scorpion venom; insecticidal peptide; mass spectrometric analysis; de novo sequencing
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Yoshimoto, Y.; Miyashita, M.; Abdel-Wahab, M.; Sarhan, M.; Nakagawa, Y.; Miyagawa, H. Isolation and Characterization of Insecticidal Toxins from the Venom of the North African Scorpion, Buthacus leptochelys. Toxins 2019, 11, 236.

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