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Toxins, Volume 11, Issue 6 (June 2019) – 68 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Crackers, biscuits, and bread were produced from naturally contaminated flour using different processing conditions, and all degradation products of Deoxynivalenol (DON) were identified using a stable isotope labelling approach combined with high resolution mass spectrometry analysis. A higher NaHCO3 concentration and baking time and temperature caused higher degradation. NH4HCO3, yeast, vinegar, sucrose concentration, as well as leavening time did not enhance degradation. In vitro cell viability assays confirmed that the major degradation product, isoDON, is considerably less toxic than DON. This proves for the first time that large-scale industrial baking results in partial detoxification of DON, which can be enhanced through process management. View this paper.
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Open AccessArticle
Exposure to the Harmful Algal Bloom (HAB) Toxin Microcystin-LR (MC-LR) Prolongs and Increases Severity of Dextran Sulfate Sodium (DSS)-Induced Colitis
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 371; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060371 - 25 Jun 2019
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 2489
Abstract
Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) represents a collection of gastrointestinal disorders resulting from genetic and environmental factors. Microcystin-leucine arginine (MC-LR) is a toxin produced by cyanobacteria during algal blooms and demonstrates bioaccumulation in the intestinal tract following ingestion. Little is known about the impact [...] Read more.
Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) represents a collection of gastrointestinal disorders resulting from genetic and environmental factors. Microcystin-leucine arginine (MC-LR) is a toxin produced by cyanobacteria during algal blooms and demonstrates bioaccumulation in the intestinal tract following ingestion. Little is known about the impact of MC-LR ingestion in individuals with IBD. In this study, we sought to investigate MC-LR’s effects in a dextran sulfate sodium (DSS)-induced colitis model. Mice were separated into four groups: (a) water only (control), (b) DSS followed by water (DSS), (c) water followed by MC-LR (MC-LR), and (d) DSS followed by MC-LR (DSS + MC-LR). DSS resulted in weight loss, splenomegaly, and severe colitis marked by transmural acute inflammation, ulceration, shortened colon length, and bloody stools. DSS + MC-LR mice experienced prolonged weight loss and bloody stools, increased ulceration of colonic mucosa, and shorter colon length as compared with DSS mice. DSS + MC-LR also resulted in greater increases in pro-inflammatory transcripts within colonic tissue (TNF-α, IL-1β, CD40, MCP-1) and the pro-fibrotic marker, PAI-1, as compared to DSS-only ingestion. These findings demonstrate that MC-LR exposure not only prolongs, but also worsens the severity of pre-existing colitis, strengthening evidence of MC-LR as an under-recognized environmental toxin in vulnerable populations, such as those with IBD. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Freshwater Algal Toxins: Monitoring and Toxicity Profile)
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Open AccessPerspective
Pore-Forming Proteins from Cnidarians and Arachnids as Potential Biotechnological Tools
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 370; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060370 - 25 Jun 2019
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1725
Abstract
Animal venoms are complex mixtures of highly specialized toxic molecules. Cnidarians and arachnids produce pore-forming proteins (PFPs) directed against the plasma membrane of their target cells. Among PFPs from cnidarians, actinoporins stand out for their small size and molecular simplicity. While native actinoporins [...] Read more.
Animal venoms are complex mixtures of highly specialized toxic molecules. Cnidarians and arachnids produce pore-forming proteins (PFPs) directed against the plasma membrane of their target cells. Among PFPs from cnidarians, actinoporins stand out for their small size and molecular simplicity. While native actinoporins require only sphingomyelin for membrane binding, engineered chimeras containing a recognition antibody-derived domain fused to an actinoporin isoform can nonetheless serve as highly specific immunotoxins. Examples of such constructs targeted against malignant cells have been already reported. However, PFPs from arachnid venoms are less well-studied from a structural and functional point of view. Spiders from the Latrodectus genus are professional insect hunters that, as part of their toxic arsenal, produce large PFPs known as latrotoxins. Interestingly, some latrotoxins have been identified as potent and highly-specific insecticides. Given the proteinaceous nature of these toxins, their promising future use as efficient bioinsecticides is discussed throughout this Perspective. Protein engineering and large-scale recombinant production are critical steps for the use of these PFPs as tools to control agriculturally important insect pests. In summary, both families of PFPs, from Cnidaria and Arachnida, appear to be molecules with promising biotechnological applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pore-Forming Toxins (PFTs): Never Out of Fashion)
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Open AccessReview
Structural Biology and Molecular Modeling to Analyze the Entry of Bacterial Toxins and Virulence Factors into Host Cells
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 369; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060369 - 24 Jun 2019
Viewed by 1277
Abstract
Understanding the functions and mechanisms of biological systems is an outstanding challenge. One way to overcome it is to combine together several approaches such as molecular modeling and experimental structural biology techniques. Indeed, the interplay between structural and dynamical properties of the system [...] Read more.
Understanding the functions and mechanisms of biological systems is an outstanding challenge. One way to overcome it is to combine together several approaches such as molecular modeling and experimental structural biology techniques. Indeed, the interplay between structural and dynamical properties of the system is crucial to unravel the function of molecular machinery’s. In this review, we focus on how molecular simulations along with structural information can aid in interpreting biological data. Here, we examine two different cases: (i) the endosomal translocation toxins (diphtheria, tetanus, botulinum toxins) and (ii) the activation of adenylyl cyclase inside the cytoplasm (edema factor, CyA, ExoY). Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Structural Domains of the Bacillus thuringiensis Vip3Af Protein Unraveled by Tryptic Digestion of Alanine Mutants
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 368; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060368 - 21 Jun 2019
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1013
Abstract
Vip3 proteins are increasingly used in insect control in transgenic crops. To shed light on the structure of these proteins, we used the approach of the trypsin fragmentation of mutants altering the conformation of the Vip3Af protein. From an alanine scanning of Vip3Af, [...] Read more.
Vip3 proteins are increasingly used in insect control in transgenic crops. To shed light on the structure of these proteins, we used the approach of the trypsin fragmentation of mutants altering the conformation of the Vip3Af protein. From an alanine scanning of Vip3Af, we selected mutants with an altered proteolytic pattern. Based on protease digestion patterns, their effect on oligomer formation, and theoretical cleavage sites, we generated a map of the Vip3Af protein with five domains which match some of the domains proposed independently by two in silico models. Domain I ranges amino acids (aa) 12–198, domain II aa199–313, domain III aa314–526, domain IV aa527–668, and domain V aa669–788. The effect of some mutations on the ability to form a tetrameric molecule revealed that domains I–II are required for tetramerization, while domain V is not. The involvement of domain IV in the tetramer formation is not clear. Some mutations distributed from near the end of domain I up to the end of domain II affect the stability of the first three domains of the protein and destroy the tetrameric form upon trypsin treatment. Because of the high sequence similarity among Vip3 proteins, we propose that our domain map can be extended to the Vip3 family of proteins. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Chemical Synthesis, Proper Folding, Nav Channel Selectivity Profile and Analgesic Properties of the Spider Peptide Phlotoxin 1
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 367; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060367 - 21 Jun 2019
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1406
Abstract
Phlotoxin-1 (PhlTx1) is a peptide previously identified in tarantula venom (Phlogius species) that belongs to the inhibitory cysteine-knot (ICK) toxin family. Like many ICK-based spider toxins, the synthesis of PhlTx1 appears particularly challenging, mostly for obtaining appropriate folding and concomitant suitable disulfide [...] Read more.
Phlotoxin-1 (PhlTx1) is a peptide previously identified in tarantula venom (Phlogius species) that belongs to the inhibitory cysteine-knot (ICK) toxin family. Like many ICK-based spider toxins, the synthesis of PhlTx1 appears particularly challenging, mostly for obtaining appropriate folding and concomitant suitable disulfide bridge formation. Herein, we describe a procedure for the chemical synthesis and the directed sequential disulfide bridge formation of PhlTx1 that allows for a straightforward production of this challenging peptide. We also performed extensive functional testing of PhlTx1 on 31 ion channel types and identified the voltage-gated sodium (Nav) channel Nav1.7 as the main target of this toxin. Moreover, we compared PhlTx1 activity to 10 other spider toxin activities on an automated patch-clamp system with Chinese Hamster Ovary (CHO) cells expressing human Nav1.7. Performing these analyses in reproducible conditions allowed for classification according to the potency of the best natural Nav1.7 peptide blockers. Finally, subsequent in vivo testing revealed that intrathecal injection of PhlTx1 reduces the response of mice to formalin in both the acute pain and inflammation phase without signs of neurotoxicity. PhlTx1 is thus an interesting toxin to investigate Nav1.7 involvement in cellular excitability and pain. Full article
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Open AccessCommunication
Oscillatoxin I: A New Aplysiatoxin Derivative, from a Marine Cyanobacterium
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 366; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060366 - 21 Jun 2019
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1156
Abstract
Cyanobacteria have been shown to produce a number of bioactive compounds, including toxins. Some bioactive compounds obtained from a marine cyanobacterium Moorea producens (formerly Lyngbya majuscula) have been recognized as drug leads; one of these compounds is aplysiatoxin. We have isolated various [...] Read more.
Cyanobacteria have been shown to produce a number of bioactive compounds, including toxins. Some bioactive compounds obtained from a marine cyanobacterium Moorea producens (formerly Lyngbya majuscula) have been recognized as drug leads; one of these compounds is aplysiatoxin. We have isolated various aplysiatoxin derivatives from a M. producens sample obtained from the Okinawan coastal area. The frozen sample was extracted with organic solvents. The ethyl acetate layer was obtained from the crude extracts via liquid–liquid partitioning, then separated by HPLC using a reversed-phase column. Finally, 1.1 mg of the compound was isolated. The chemical structure of the isolated compound was elucidated with spectroscopic methods, using HR-MS and 1D and 2D NMR techniques, and was revealed to be oscillatoxin I, a new member of the aplysiatoxin family. Oscillatoxin I showed cytotoxicity against the L1210 mouse lymphoma cell line and diatom growth-inhibition activity against the marine diatom Nitzschia amabilis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Toxins Detection)
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Open AccessArticle
An In-Silico Sequence-Structure-Function Analysis of the N-Terminal Lobe in CT Group Bacterial ADP-Ribosyltransferase Toxins
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 365; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060365 - 21 Jun 2019
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 989
Abstract
The C3-like toxins are single-domain proteins that represent a minimal mono-ADP-ribosyl transferase (mART) enzyme with a simple model scaffold for the entire cholera toxin (CT)-group. These proteins possess a single (A-domain) that modifies Rho proteins. In contrast, C2-like toxins require a binding/translocation partner [...] Read more.
The C3-like toxins are single-domain proteins that represent a minimal mono-ADP-ribosyl transferase (mART) enzyme with a simple model scaffold for the entire cholera toxin (CT)-group. These proteins possess a single (A-domain) that modifies Rho proteins. In contrast, C2-like toxins require a binding/translocation partner (B-component) for intoxication. These are A-only toxins that contain the E-x-E motif, modify G-actin, but are two-domains with a C-domain possessing enzymatic activity. The N-domain of the C2-like toxins is unstructured, and its function is currently unknown. A sequence-structure-function comparison was performed on the N-terminal region of the mART domain of the enzymatic component of the CT toxin group in the CATCH fold (3.90.210.10). Special consideration was given to the N-domain distal segment, the α-lobe (α1–α4), and its different roles in these toxin sub-groups. These results show that the role of the N-terminal α-lobe is to provide a suitable configuration (i) of the α2–α3 helices to feature the α3-motif that has a role in NAD+ substrate binding and possibly in the interaction with the protein target; (ii) the α3–α4 helices to provide the α3/4-loop with protein-protein interaction capability; and (iii) the α1-Ntail that features specialized motif(s) according to the toxin type (A-only or A-B toxins) exhibiting an effect on the catalytic activity via the ARTT-loop, with a role in the inter-domain stability, and with a function in the binding and/or translocation steps during the internalization process. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ADP-Ribosylating Toxin)
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Open AccessReview
Impact of Ergot Alkaloids on Female Reproduction in Domestic Livestock Species
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 364; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060364 - 21 Jun 2019
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1141
Abstract
Fescue toxicosis is a multifaceted syndrome that elicits many negative effects on livestock consuming ergot alkaloids produced by endophyte-infected tall fescue. The economic losses associated with fescue toxicosis are primarily due to reproductive failure including altered cyclicity, suppressed hormone secretion, reduced pregnancy rates, [...] Read more.
Fescue toxicosis is a multifaceted syndrome that elicits many negative effects on livestock consuming ergot alkaloids produced by endophyte-infected tall fescue. The economic losses associated with fescue toxicosis are primarily due to reproductive failure including altered cyclicity, suppressed hormone secretion, reduced pregnancy rates, agalactia, and reduced offspring birth weights. For decades, a multitude of research has investigated the physiological and cellular mechanisms of these reproductive failures associated with fescue toxicosis. This review will summarize the various effects of ergot alkaloids on female reproduction in grazing livestock species. Full article
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Open AccessEditor’s ChoiceReview
The Urgent Need to Develop Novel Strategies for the Diagnosis and Treatment of Snakebites
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 363; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060363 - 20 Jun 2019
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 2494
Abstract
Snakebite envenoming (SBE) is a priority neglected tropical disease, which kills in excess of 100,000 people per year. Additionally, many millions of survivors also suffer through disabilities and long-term health consequences. The only treatment for SBE, antivenom, has a number of major associated [...] Read more.
Snakebite envenoming (SBE) is a priority neglected tropical disease, which kills in excess of 100,000 people per year. Additionally, many millions of survivors also suffer through disabilities and long-term health consequences. The only treatment for SBE, antivenom, has a number of major associated problems, not least, adverse reactions and limited availability. This emphasises the necessity for urgent improvements to the management of this disease. Administration of antivenom is too frequently based on symptomatology, which results in wasting crucial time. The majority of SBE-affected regions rely on broad-spectrum polyvalent antivenoms that have a low content of case-specific efficacious immunoglobulins. Research into small molecular therapeutics such as varespladib/methyl-varespladib (PLA2 inhibitors) and batimastat/marimastat (metalloprotease inhibitors) suggest that such adjunctive treatments could be hugely beneficial to victims. Progress into toxin-specific monoclonal antibodies as well as alternative binding scaffolds such as aptamers hold much promise for future treatment strategies. SBE is not implicit during snakebite, due to venom metering. Thus, the delay between bite and symptom presentation is critical and when symptoms appear it may often already be too late to effectively treat SBE. The development of reliable diagnostical tools could therefore initiate a paradigm shift in the treatment of SBE. While the complete eradication of SBE is an impossibility, mitigation is in the pipeline, with new treatments and diagnostics rapidly emerging. Here we critically review the urgent necessity for the development of diagnostic tools and improved therapeutics to mitigate the deaths and disabilities caused by SBE. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Strategies for the Diagnosis and Treatment of Snakebites)
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Open AccessArticle
Distinct Spatiotemporal Distribution of Bacterial Toxin-Produced Cellular cAMP Differentially Inhibits Opsonophagocytic Signaling
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 362; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060362 - 20 Jun 2019
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1106
Abstract
Myeloid phagocytes have evolved to rapidly recognize invading pathogens and clear them through opsonophagocytic killing. The adenylate cyclase toxin (CyaA) of Bordetella pertussis and the edema toxin (ET) of Bacillus anthracis are both calmodulin-activated toxins with adenylyl cyclase activity that invade host cells [...] Read more.
Myeloid phagocytes have evolved to rapidly recognize invading pathogens and clear them through opsonophagocytic killing. The adenylate cyclase toxin (CyaA) of Bordetella pertussis and the edema toxin (ET) of Bacillus anthracis are both calmodulin-activated toxins with adenylyl cyclase activity that invade host cells and massively increase the cellular concentrations of a key second messenger molecule, 3’,5’-cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP). However, the two toxins differ in the kinetics and mode of cell entry and generate different cAMP concentration gradients within the cell. While CyaA rapidly penetrates cells directly across their plasma membrane, the cellular entry of ET depends on receptor-mediated endocytosis and translocation of the enzymatic subunit across the endosomal membrane. We show that CyaA-generated membrane-proximal cAMP gradient strongly inhibits the activation and phosphorylation of Syk, Vav, and Pyk2, thus inhibiting opsonophagocytosis. By contrast, at similar overall cellular cAMP levels, the ET-generated perinuclear cAMP gradient poorly inhibits the activation and phosphorylation of these signaling proteins. Hence, differences in spatiotemporal distribution of cAMP produced by the two adenylyl cyclase toxins differentially affect the opsonophagocytic signaling in myeloid phagocytes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue RTX Toxins)
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Open AccessArticle
Phytochemicals of Apple Pomace as Prospect Bio-Fungicide Agents against Mycotoxigenic Fungal Species—In Vitro Experiments
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 361; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060361 - 20 Jun 2019
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1119
Abstract
The phytochemical constituents of apple waste were established as potential antifungal agents against four crops pathogens, specifically, Botrytis sp., Fusarium oxysporum, Petriella setifera, and Neosartorya fischeri. Crude, purified extracts and fractions of apple pomace were tested in vitro to evaluate their [...] Read more.
The phytochemical constituents of apple waste were established as potential antifungal agents against four crops pathogens, specifically, Botrytis sp., Fusarium oxysporum, Petriella setifera, and Neosartorya fischeri. Crude, purified extracts and fractions of apple pomace were tested in vitro to evaluate their antifungal and antioxidant properties. The phytochemical constituents of the tested materials were mainly represented by phloridzin and quercetin derivatives, as well as previously undescribed in apples, monoterpene–pinnatifidanoside D. Its structure was confirmed by 1D- and 2D-nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopic analyses. The fraction containing quercetin pentosides possessed the highest antioxidant activity, while the strongest antifungal activity was exerted by a fraction containing phloridzin. Sugar moieties differentiated the antifungal activity of quercetin glycosides. Quercetin hexosides possessed stronger antifungal activity than quercetin pentosides. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
The In Vivo and In Vitro Toxicokinetics of Citreoviridin Extracted from Penicillium citreonigrum
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 360; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060360 - 20 Jun 2019
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1012
Abstract
Citreoviridin (CTVD), a mycotoxin called yellow rice toxin, is reported to be related to acute cardiac beriberi; however, its toxicokinetics remain unclear. The present study elucidated the toxicokinetics through in vivo experiments in swine and predicted the human toxicokinetics by comparing the findings [...] Read more.
Citreoviridin (CTVD), a mycotoxin called yellow rice toxin, is reported to be related to acute cardiac beriberi; however, its toxicokinetics remain unclear. The present study elucidated the toxicokinetics through in vivo experiments in swine and predicted the human toxicokinetics by comparing the findings to those from in vitro experiments. In vivo experiments revealed the high bioavailability of CTVD (116.4%) in swine. An intestinal permeability study using Caco-2 cells to estimate the toxicokinetics in humans showed that CTVD has a high permeability coefficient. When CTVD was incubated with hepatic S9 fraction from swine and humans, hydroxylation and methylation, desaturation, and dihydroxylation derivatives were produced as the predominant metabolites. The levels of these products produced using human S9 were higher than those obtained swine S9, while CTVD glucuronide was produced slowly in human S9 in comparison to swine S9. Furthermore, the elimination of CTVD by human S9 was significantly more rapid in comparison to that by swine S9. These results suggest that CTVD is easily absorbed in swine and that it remains in the body where it is slowly metabolized. In contrast, the absorption of CTVD in humans would be the same as that in swine, although its elimination would be faster. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
OnabotulinumtoxinA Reduces Temporal Pain Processing at Spinal Level in Patients with Lower Limb Spasticity
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 359; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060359 - 20 Jun 2019
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 957
Abstract
Spasticity is a muscle tone disorder associated with different neurological conditions. Spasticity could be associated with pain, high disability, poor functional recovery, and reduced quality of life. Botulinum neurotoxin type A (BoNT-A) is considered a first-line treatment for spasticity and, more recently, it [...] Read more.
Spasticity is a muscle tone disorder associated with different neurological conditions. Spasticity could be associated with pain, high disability, poor functional recovery, and reduced quality of life. Botulinum neurotoxin type A (BoNT-A) is considered a first-line treatment for spasticity and, more recently, it also represents a therapeutic option for various chronic pain conditions. In this open label study, we aim to evaluate the effect of the BoNT-A on the spinal nociception in patients affected by spasticity of the lower limbs with associated pain with predominantly neuropathic features. Ten patients with stroke, 10 with multiple sclerosis and 5 with spinal cord injury were enrolled in the study. They were tested with clinical scales (neuropathic pain scale inventory (NPSI), numerical rating scale (NRS), modified Ashworth scale (MAS) and with the nociceptive withdrawal reflex at lower limbs to explore the spinal temporal summation threshold at baseline and 30 day after BoNT-A injection. OnabotulinumtoxinA (50 to 200 units per site) was injected in the lower limb muscles according to the distribution of spasticity. No significant differences were found at baseline for neurophysiological features across groups. After the BoNT-A injection, we recorded a significant reduction in MAS and NRS scores. Regarding the neurophysiological parameters, we described a significant increase in the temporal summation threshold after the BoNT-A injection. Our data supports the hypothesis that peripherally injected OnabotulinumtoxinA modulates the excitability of spinal cord nociceptive pathways. This activity may take place irrespective of the effect of the drug on spasticity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Botulinum Toxin for Neuropathic Pain Treatment)
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Open AccessArticle
Comparison of the Protective Effects of Bee Venom Extracts with Varying PLA2 Compositions in a Mouse Model of Parkinson’s Disease
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 358; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060358 - 19 Jun 2019
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1248
Abstract
Bee venom contains a number of pharmacologically active components, including enzymes and polypeptides such as phospholipase A2 (PLA2) and melittin, which have been shown to exhibit therapeutic benefits, mainly via attenuation of inflammation, neurotoxicity, and nociception. The individual components of [...] Read more.
Bee venom contains a number of pharmacologically active components, including enzymes and polypeptides such as phospholipase A2 (PLA2) and melittin, which have been shown to exhibit therapeutic benefits, mainly via attenuation of inflammation, neurotoxicity, and nociception. The individual components of bee venom may manifest distinct biological actions and therapeutic potential. In this study, the potential mechanisms of action of PLA2 and melittin, among different compounds purified from honey bee venom, were evaluated against Parkinson’s disease (PD). Notably, bee venom PLA2 (bvPLA2), but not melittin, exhibited neuroprotective activity against PD in a 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) mouse model of PD. MPTP-induced behavioral deficits were also abolished after bvPLA2 treatment, depending on the PLA2 content. Further, bvPLA2 administration activated regulatory T cells (Tregs) while inhibiting inflammatory T helper (Th) 1 and Th17 cells in the MPTP mouse model of PD. These results indicate that bvPLA2, but not melittin, protected against MPTP and alleviated inflammation in PD. Thus, bvPLA2 is a promising and effective therapeutic agent in Parkinson’s disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue From Toxins to Drugs)
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Open AccessEditor’s ChoiceArticle
Emerging Fusarium Mycotoxins Fusaproliferin, Beauvericin, Enniatins, and Moniliformin in Serbian Maize
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 357; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060357 - 19 Jun 2019
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 1479
Abstract
Emerging mycotoxins such as moniliformin (MON), enniatins (ENs), beauvericin (BEA), and fusaproliferin (FUS) may contaminate maize and negatively influence the yield and quality of grain. The aim of this study was to determine the content of emerging Fusarium mycotoxins in Serbian maize from [...] Read more.
Emerging mycotoxins such as moniliformin (MON), enniatins (ENs), beauvericin (BEA), and fusaproliferin (FUS) may contaminate maize and negatively influence the yield and quality of grain. The aim of this study was to determine the content of emerging Fusarium mycotoxins in Serbian maize from the 2016, 2017, and 2018 harvests. A total of 190 samples from commercial maize production operations in Serbia were analyzed for the presence of MON, ENs, BEA, and FUS using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). The obtained results were interpreted together with weather data from each year. MON, BEA, and FUS were major contaminants, while other emerging mycotoxins were not detected or were found in fewer samples (<20%). Overall contamination was highest in 2016 when MON and BEA were found in 50–80% of samples. In 2017 and 2018, high levels of MON, FUS, and BEA were detected in regions with high precipitation and warm weather during the silking phase of maize (July and the beginning of August), when the plants are most susceptible to Fusarium infections. Since environmental conditions in Serbia are favorable for the occurrence of mycotoxigenic fungi, monitoring Fusarium toxins is essential for the production of safe food and feed. Full article
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Open AccessEditor’s ChoiceReview
An Eye on Staphylococcus aureus Toxins: Roles in Ocular Damage and Inflammation
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 356; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060356 - 19 Jun 2019
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 2583
Abstract
Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) is a common pathogen of the eye, capable of infecting external tissues such as the tear duct, conjunctiva, and the cornea, as well the inner and more delicate anterior and posterior chambers. S. aureus produces numerous toxins and enzymes [...] Read more.
Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) is a common pathogen of the eye, capable of infecting external tissues such as the tear duct, conjunctiva, and the cornea, as well the inner and more delicate anterior and posterior chambers. S. aureus produces numerous toxins and enzymes capable of causing profound damage to tissues and organs, as well as modulating the immune response to these infections. Unfortunately, in the context of ocular infections, this can mean blindness for the patient. The role of α-toxin in corneal infection (keratitis) and infection of the interior of the eye (endophthalmitis) has been well established by comparing virulence in animal models and α-toxin-deficient isogenic mutants with their wild-type parental strains. The importance of other toxins, such as β-toxin, γ-toxin, and Panton–Valentine leukocidin (PVL), have been analyzed to a lesser degree and their roles in eye infections are less clear. Other toxins such as the phenol-soluble modulins have yet to be examined in any animal models for their contributions to virulence in eye infections. This review discusses the state of current knowledge of the roles of S. aureus toxins in eye infections and the controversies existing as a result of the use of different infection models. The strengths and limitations of these ocular infection models are discussed, as well as the need for physiological relevance in the study of staphylococcal toxins in these models. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Staphylococcus aureus Toxins) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessEditor’s ChoiceReview
Brown Spider (Loxosceles) Venom Toxins as Potential Biotools for the Development of Novel Therapeutics
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 355; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060355 - 19 Jun 2019
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1429
Abstract
Brown spider envenomation results in dermonecrosis with gravitational spreading characterized by a marked inflammatory reaction and with lower prevalence of systemic manifestations such as renal failure and hematological disturbances. Several toxins make up the venom of these species, and they are mainly peptides [...] Read more.
Brown spider envenomation results in dermonecrosis with gravitational spreading characterized by a marked inflammatory reaction and with lower prevalence of systemic manifestations such as renal failure and hematological disturbances. Several toxins make up the venom of these species, and they are mainly peptides and proteins ranging from 5–40 kDa. The venoms have three major families of toxins: phospholipases-D, astacin-like metalloproteases, and the inhibitor cystine knot (ICK) peptides. Serine proteases, serpins, hyaluronidases, venom allergens, and a translationally controlled tumor protein (TCTP) are also present. Toxins hold essential biological properties that enable interactions with a range of distinct molecular targets. Therefore, the application of toxins as research tools and clinical products motivates repurposing their uses of interest. This review aims to discuss possibilities for brown spider venom toxins as putative models for designing molecules likely for therapeutics based on the status quo of brown spider venoms. Herein, we explore new possibilities for the venom components in the context of their biochemical and biological features, likewise their cellular targets, three-dimensional structures, and mechanisms of action. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Membrane Permeabilization by Pore-Forming RTX Toxins: What Kind of Lesions Do These Toxins Form?
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 354; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060354 - 18 Jun 2019
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1511
Abstract
Pore-forming toxins (PFTs) form nanoscale pores across target membranes causing cell death. The pore-forming cytolysins of the RTX (repeats in toxin) family belong to a steadily increasing family of proteins characterized by having in their primary sequences a number of glycine- and aspartate-rich [...] Read more.
Pore-forming toxins (PFTs) form nanoscale pores across target membranes causing cell death. The pore-forming cytolysins of the RTX (repeats in toxin) family belong to a steadily increasing family of proteins characterized by having in their primary sequences a number of glycine- and aspartate-rich nonapeptide repeats. They are secreted by a variety of Gram-negative bacteria and form ion-permeable pores in several cell types, such as immune cells, epithelial cells, or erythrocytes. Pore-formation by RTX-toxins leads to the dissipation of ionic gradients and membrane potential across the cytoplasmic membrane of target cells, which results in cell death. The pores formed in lipid bilayers by the RTX-toxins share some common properties such as cation selectivity and voltage-dependence. Hemolytic and cytolytic RTX-toxins are important virulence factors in the pathogenesis of the producing bacteria. And hence, understanding the function of these proteins at the molecular level is critical to elucidating their role in disease processes. In this review we summarize the current state of knowledge on pore-formation by RTX toxins, and include recent results from our own laboratory regarding the pore-forming activity of adenylate cyclase toxin (ACT or CyaA), a large protein toxin secreted by Bordetella pertussis, the bacterium causative of whooping cough. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pore-Forming Toxins (PFTs): Never Out of Fashion)
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Open AccessArticle
Tissue Accumulations of Toxic Aconitum Alkaloids after Short-Term and Long-Term Oral Administrations of Clinically Used Radix Aconiti Lateralis Preparations in Rats
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 353; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060353 - 18 Jun 2019
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 988
Abstract
Although Radix Aconiti Lateralis (Fuzi) is an extensively used traditional Chinese medicine with promising therapeutic effects and relatively well-reported toxicities, the related toxic aconitum alkaloid concentrations in major organs after its short-term and long-term intake during clinical practice are still not known. To [...] Read more.
Although Radix Aconiti Lateralis (Fuzi) is an extensively used traditional Chinese medicine with promising therapeutic effects and relatively well-reported toxicities, the related toxic aconitum alkaloid concentrations in major organs after its short-term and long-term intake during clinical practice are still not known. To give a comprehensive understanding of Fuzi-induced toxicities, current study is proposed aiming to investigate the biodistribution of the six toxic alkaloids in Fuzi, namely Aconitine (AC), Hypaconitine (HA), Mesaconitine (MA), Benzoylaconine (BAC), Benzoylhypaconine (BHA) and Benzoylmesaconine (BMA), after its oral administrations at clinically relevant dosing regimen. A ultra-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (UPLC–MS/MS) method was developed and validated for simultaneous quantification of six toxic alkaloids in plasma, urine and major organs of Sprague Dawley rats after oral administrations of two commonly used Fuzi preparations, namely Heishunpian and Paofupian, at their clinically relevant dose for single and 15-days. Among the studied toxic alkaloids and organs, BMA demonstrated the highest concentrations in all studied organs with liver containing the highest amount of the studied alkaloids, indicating their potential hepatotoxicity. Moreover, tissue accumulation of toxic alkaloids after multiple dose was observed, suggesting the needs for dose adjustment and more attention to the toxicities induced by chronic use of Fuzi in patients. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Deoxynivalenol in the Diet Impairs Bone Mineralization in Broiler Chickens
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 352; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060352 - 18 Jun 2019
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1543
Abstract
Deoxynivalenol (DON) is one of the most abundant and important trichothecene mycotoxins produced by Fusarium species. In chickens, DON intake causes feed refusal, impairs performance, gut barrier function, and immunity, and raises oxidative stress. To determine the effect of DON on bone mineralization [...] Read more.
Deoxynivalenol (DON) is one of the most abundant and important trichothecene mycotoxins produced by Fusarium species. In chickens, DON intake causes feed refusal, impairs performance, gut barrier function, and immunity, and raises oxidative stress. To determine the effect of DON on bone mineralization and serum calcium and phosphorus, 80 newly-hatched chickens were fed 4 diets with 0, 2.5, 5, and 10 mg DON/kg feed in this pilot study. In week 5, chickens were euthanized, femur and tibiotarsus bones were separated from the meat, and after incineration ash composition, as well as serum calcium and phosphorus, were determined using clinical biochemistry. Dietary DON reduced chicken dry matter, calcium, and phosphorus intake, and subsequently body and leg weight. DON affected bone density and composition of the tibiotarsus more drastically than of the femur. However, lower mineral intake did not solely explain our observations of the quadratically lower tibiotarsus density and ash content, as well as linearly decreased Ca content in the femur and tibiotarsus with increasing DON levels. Linearly decreasing serum phosphorus concentrations with increasing DON levels further supported impaired mineral homeostasis due to DON. In conclusion, already low dietary DON contamination of 2.5 mg/kg feed can compromise bone mineralization in chickens. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fungal Infestations in Humans, Animals, Crops)
Open AccessArticle
Biomonitoring Data for Assessing Aflatoxins and Ochratoxin A Exposure by Italian Feedstuffs Workers
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 351; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060351 - 18 Jun 2019
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1251
Abstract
Mycotoxins exposure by inhalation and/or dermal contact is possible in different branches of industry especially where heavily dusty settings are present and the handling of dusty commodities is performed. This study aims to explore the validity of the biomonitoring as a tool to [...] Read more.
Mycotoxins exposure by inhalation and/or dermal contact is possible in different branches of industry especially where heavily dusty settings are present and the handling of dusty commodities is performed. This study aims to explore the validity of the biomonitoring as a tool to investigate the intake of mycotoxins in a population of workers operating in an Italian feed plant. Serum samples were collected for the determination of aflatoxins B1 (AFB1), AFB1-Lysine adduct and ochratoxin A (OTA). A method based on liquid–liquid extraction coupled with high resolution mass spectrometry determination was developed and fully validated. For AFB1, a high number of non-detected samples (90%) was found and no statistical difference was observed comparing workers and control group. None of the analyzed samples showed the presence of AFB1-Lysine adduct. For OTA, the 100% of the analyzed samples was positive with a 33% of the samples showing a concentration higher than the limit of quantification (LOQ), but no statistical difference was highlighted between the average levels of exposed and control groups. In conclusion, the presence of AFB1 and OTA in serum cannot be attributable to occupational exposure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Methods for Mycotoxins Detection)
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Open AccessEditor’s ChoiceReview
Intracellular Transport and Cytotoxicity of the Protein Toxin Ricin
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 350; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060350 - 18 Jun 2019
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 2317
Abstract
Ricin can be isolated from the seeds of the castor bean plant (Ricinus communis). It belongs to the ribosome-inactivating protein (RIP) family of toxins classified as a bio-threat agent due to its high toxicity, stability and availability. Ricin is a typical [...] Read more.
Ricin can be isolated from the seeds of the castor bean plant (Ricinus communis). It belongs to the ribosome-inactivating protein (RIP) family of toxins classified as a bio-threat agent due to its high toxicity, stability and availability. Ricin is a typical A-B toxin consisting of a single enzymatic A subunit (RTA) and a binding B subunit (RTB) joined by a single disulfide bond. RTA possesses an RNA N-glycosidase activity; it cleaves ribosomal RNA leading to the inhibition of protein synthesis. However, the mechanism of ricin-mediated cell death is quite complex, as a growing number of studies demonstrate that the inhibition of protein synthesis is not always correlated with long term ricin toxicity. To exert its cytotoxic effect, ricin A-chain has to be transported to the cytosol of the host cell. This translocation is preceded by endocytic uptake of the toxin and retrograde traffic through the trans-Golgi network (TGN) and the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). In this article, we describe intracellular trafficking of ricin with particular emphasis on host cell factors that facilitate this transport and contribute to ricin cytotoxicity in mammalian and yeast cells. The current understanding of the mechanisms of ricin-mediated cell death is discussed as well. We also comment on recent reports presenting medical applications for ricin and progress associated with the development of vaccines against this toxin. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ricin Toxins) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessArticle
Effects of Destruxin A on Silkworm’s Immunophilins
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 349; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060349 - 18 Jun 2019
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1001
Abstract
Destruxin A (DA), a major secondary metabolite of Metarhizium anisopliae, has anti-immunity to insects. However, the detailed mechanism and its interactions with target proteins are elusive. Previously, three immunophilins, peptidyl–prolyl cis–trans isomerase (BmPPI), FK506 binding-protein 45 (BmFKBP45) and BmFKBP59 homologue, were isolated [...] Read more.
Destruxin A (DA), a major secondary metabolite of Metarhizium anisopliae, has anti-immunity to insects. However, the detailed mechanism and its interactions with target proteins are elusive. Previously, three immunophilins, peptidyl–prolyl cis–trans isomerase (BmPPI), FK506 binding-protein 45 (BmFKBP45) and BmFKBP59 homologue, were isolated from the silkworm, Bombyx mori Bm12 cell line following treatment with DA, which suggested that these proteins were possible DA-binding proteins. To validate the interaction between DA and the three immunophilins, we performed bio-layer interferometry (BLI) assay, and the results showed that DA has interaction with BmPPI, whose affinity constant value is 1.98 × 10−3 M and which has no affinity with FKBP45 and FKBP59 homologue in vitro. Furthermore, we investigated the affinity between DA and human PPI protein (HsPPIA) and the affinity constant (KD) value is 2.22 × 10−3 M. Additionally, we compared the effects of silkworm and human PPI proteins produced by DA and immunosuppressants, cyclosporine A (CsA), and tacrolimus (FK506), by employing I2H (insect two-hybrid) in the SF-9 cell line. The results indicated that in silkworm, the effects created by DA and CsA were stronger than FK506. Furthermore, the effects created by DA in silkworm were stronger than those in humans. This study will offer new thinking to elucidate the molecular mechanism of DA in the immunity system of insects. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fungal Infestations in Humans, Animals, Crops)
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Open AccessArticle
Toxin B Variants from Clostridium difficile Strains VPI 10463 and NAP1/027 Share Similar Substrate Profile and Cellular Intoxication Kinetics but Use Different Host Cell Entry Factors
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 348; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060348 - 17 Jun 2019
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1210
Abstract
Clostridium difficile induces antibiotic-associated diarrhea due to the release of toxin A (TcdA) and toxin B (TcdB), the latter being its main virulence factor. The epidemic strain NAP1/027 has an increased virulence attributed to different factors. We compared cellular intoxication by TcdBNAP1 [...] Read more.
Clostridium difficile induces antibiotic-associated diarrhea due to the release of toxin A (TcdA) and toxin B (TcdB), the latter being its main virulence factor. The epidemic strain NAP1/027 has an increased virulence attributed to different factors. We compared cellular intoxication by TcdBNAP1 with that by the reference strain VPI 10463 (TcdBVPI). In a mouse ligated intestinal loop model, TcdBNAP1 induced higher neutrophil recruitment, cytokine release, and epithelial damage than TcdBVPI. Both toxins modified the same panel of small GTPases and exhibited similar in vitro autoprocessing kinetics. On the basis of sequence variations in the frizzled-binding domain (FBD), we reasoned that TcdBVPI and TcdBNAP1 might have different receptor specificities. To test this possibility, we used a TcdB from a NAP1 variant strain (TcdBNAP1v) unable to glucosylate RhoA but with the same receptor-binding domains as TcdBNAP1. Cells were preincubated with TcdBNAP1v to block cellular receptors, prior to intoxication with either TcdBVPI or TcdBNAP1. Preincubation with TcdBNAP1v blocked RhoA glucosylation by TcdBNAP1 but not by TcdBVPI, indicating that the toxins use different host factors for cell entry. This crucial difference might explain the increased biological activity of TcdBNAP1 in the intestine, representing a contributing factor for the increased virulence of the NAP1/027 strain. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxins Secretion and Translocation)
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Open AccessReview
Repertoire of the Bacillus thuringiensis Virulence Factors Unrelated to Major Classes of Protein Toxins and Its Role in Specificity of Host-Pathogen Interactions
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 347; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060347 - 17 Jun 2019
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 1454
Abstract
Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) is a Gram-positive soil bacteria that infects invertebrates, predominantly of Arthropoda phylum. Due to its immense host range Bt has become a leading producer of biopesticides applied both in biotechnology and agriculture. Cytotoxic effect of Bt, as [...] Read more.
Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) is a Gram-positive soil bacteria that infects invertebrates, predominantly of Arthropoda phylum. Due to its immense host range Bt has become a leading producer of biopesticides applied both in biotechnology and agriculture. Cytotoxic effect of Bt, as well as its host specificity, are commonly attributed either to proteinaceous crystal parasporal toxins (Cry and Cyt) produced by bacteria in a stationary phase or to soluble toxins of Vip and Sip families secreted by vegetative cells. At the same time, numerous non-toxin virulence factors of Bt have been discovered, including metalloproteases, chitinases, aminopolyol antibiotics and nucleotide-mimicking moieties. These agents act at each stage of the B. thuringiensis invasion and contribute to cytotoxic properties of Bt strains enhancing toxin activity, ensuring host immune response evasion and participating in extracellular matrix degeneration. In this review we attempt to classify Bt virulence factors unrelated to major groups of protein toxins and discuss their putative role in the establishment of Bt specificity to various groups of insects. Full article
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Open AccessCommunication
Recombinant Antibodies against Mycolactone
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 346; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060346 - 17 Jun 2019
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1584
Abstract
In the past, it has proved challenging to generate antibodies against mycolactone, the primary lipidic toxin A of Mycobacterium ulcerans causing Buruli ulcer, due to its immunosuppressive properties. Here we show that in vitro display, comprising both phage and yeast display, can be [...] Read more.
In the past, it has proved challenging to generate antibodies against mycolactone, the primary lipidic toxin A of Mycobacterium ulcerans causing Buruli ulcer, due to its immunosuppressive properties. Here we show that in vitro display, comprising both phage and yeast display, can be used to select antibodies recognizing mycolactone from a large human naïve phage antibody library. Ten different antibodies were isolated, and hundreds more identified by next generation sequencing. These results indicate the value of in vitro display methods to generate antibodies against difficult antigenic targets such as toxins, which cannot be used for immunization unless inactivated by structural modification. The possibility to easily generate anti-mycolactone antibodies is an exciting prospect for the development of rapid and simple diagnostic/detection methods. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mycolactone: Lipid-Like Immunosuppressive Toxin of Buruli Ulcer)
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Open AccessArticle
Pharmacokinetics of Human Recombinant Anti-Botulinum Toxin Antibodies in Rats
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 345; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060345 - 17 Jun 2019
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1230
Abstract
Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNT) are potential biothreat agents due to their high lethality, potency, and ease of distribution, thus the development of antitoxins is a high priority to the US government. This study examined pre-clinical pharmacokinetic studies in rats of four oligoclonal anti-BoNT mAb-based [...] Read more.
Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNT) are potential biothreat agents due to their high lethality, potency, and ease of distribution, thus the development of antitoxins is a high priority to the US government. This study examined pre-clinical pharmacokinetic studies in rats of four oligoclonal anti-BoNT mAb-based therapeutics (NTM-1631, NTM-1632, NTM-1633, NTM-1634) for five BoNT serotypes (A, B, E, C, and D). NTM-1631, NTM-1632, and NTM-1633 each consist of three IgG1 mAbs, each with a distinct human or humanized variable region which bind to distinct epitopes on BoNT serotype A, B, or E respectively. NTM-1634 consists of four human immunoglobulin G1 (IgG1) mAbs binding BoNT C/D mosaic toxins. The mechanism of these antitoxins requires that three antibodies simultaneously bind toxin to achieve rapid clearance. Rats (total 378) displayed no adverse clinical signs attributed to antibody treatment from any of the antitoxins. Pharmacokinetic evaluation demonstrated that the individual mAbs are slowly eliminated, exhibiting dose-dependent exposure and long elimination half-lives ranging from 6.5 days to 10 days. There were no consistent differences observed between males and females or among the individual antibodies in each formulation in half-life. Anti-drug antibodies (ADA) were observed, as expected for human antibodies administered to rats. The results presented were used to support the clinical investigation of antibody-based botulism antitoxins. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Bacterial Toxins)
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Open AccessArticle
Intramuscular Ricin Poisoning of Mice Leads to Widespread Damage in the Heart, Spleen, and Bone Marrow
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 344; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060344 - 16 Jun 2019
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1222
Abstract
Ricin, a lethal toxin derived from castor oil beans, is a potential bio-threat due to its high availability and simplicity of preparation. Ricin is prepared according to simple recipes available on the internet, and was recently considered in terrorist, suicide, or homicide attempts [...] Read more.
Ricin, a lethal toxin derived from castor oil beans, is a potential bio-threat due to its high availability and simplicity of preparation. Ricin is prepared according to simple recipes available on the internet, and was recently considered in terrorist, suicide, or homicide attempts involving the parenteral route of exposure. In-depth study of the morbidity developing from parenteral ricin poisoning is mandatory for tailoring appropriate therapeutic measures to mitigate ricin toxicity in such instances. The present study applies various biochemical, hematological, histopathological, molecular, and functional approaches to broadly investigate the systemic effects of parenteral intoxication by a lethal dose of ricin in a murine model. Along with prompt coagulopathy, multi-organ hemorrhages, and thrombocytopenia, ricin induced profound morpho-pathological and functional damage in the spleen, bone marrow, and cardiovascular system. In the heart, diffuse hemorrhages, myocyte necrosis, collagen deposition, and induction in fibrinogen were observed. Severe functional impairment was manifested by marked thickening of the left ventricular wall, decreased ventricular volume, and a significant reduction in stroke volume and cardiac output. Unexpectedly, the differential severity of the ricin-induced damage did not correlate with the respective ricin-dependent catalytic activity measured in the various organs. These findings emphasize the complexity of ricin toxicity and stress the importance of developing novel therapeutic strategies that will combine not only anti-ricin specific therapy, but also will target ricin-induced indirect disturbances. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Toxic and Pharmacological Effect of Plant Toxins)
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Open AccessArticle
Novel Regulation of Alpha-Toxin and the Phenol-Soluble Modulins by Peptidyl-Prolyl cis/trans Isomerase Enzymes in Staphylococcus aureus
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 343; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060343 - 16 Jun 2019
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1724
Abstract
Peptidyl-prolyl cis/trans isomerases (PPIases) are enzymes that catalyze the cis-to-trans isomerization around proline bonds, allowing proteins to fold into their correct confirmation. Previously, we identified two PPIase enzymes in Staphylococcus aureus (PpiB and PrsA) that are involved in the regulation of [...] Read more.
Peptidyl-prolyl cis/trans isomerases (PPIases) are enzymes that catalyze the cis-to-trans isomerization around proline bonds, allowing proteins to fold into their correct confirmation. Previously, we identified two PPIase enzymes in Staphylococcus aureus (PpiB and PrsA) that are involved in the regulation of virulence determinants and have shown that PpiB contributes to S. aureus virulence in a murine abscess model of infection. Here, we further examine the role of these PPIases in S. aureus virulence and, in particular, their regulation of hemolytic toxins. Using murine abscess and systemic models of infection, we show that a ppiB mutant in a USA300 background is attenuated for virulence but that a prsA mutant is not. Deletion of the ppiB gene leads to decreased bacterial survival in macrophages and nasal epithelial cells, while there is no significant difference when prsA is deleted. Analysis of culture supernatants reveals that a ppiB mutant strain has reduced levels of the phenol-soluble modulins and that both ppiB and prsA mutants have reduced alpha-toxin activity. Finally, we perform immunoprecipitation to identify cellular targets of PpiB and PrsA. Results suggest a novel role for PpiB in S. aureus protein secretion. Collectively, our results demonstrate that PpiB and PrsA influence S. aureus toxins via distinct mechanisms, and that PpiB but not PrsA contributes to disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Staphylococcus aureus Toxins) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessEditor’s ChoiceArticle
Occurrence of Mycotoxins in Swine Feeding from Spain
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 342; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11060342 - 15 Jun 2019
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 1415
Abstract
A survey including 228 pig feed samples from Spain has been developed, exploring the occurrence of 19 mycotoxins (aflatoxins B1, B2, G1 and G2, ochratoxin A, fumonisins B1 and B2, citrinin, zearalenone, deoxynivalenol, fusarenon X, sterigmatocystin, T-2 toxin, HT-2 toxin, enniatins A, A1, [...] Read more.
A survey including 228 pig feed samples from Spain has been developed, exploring the occurrence of 19 mycotoxins (aflatoxins B1, B2, G1 and G2, ochratoxin A, fumonisins B1 and B2, citrinin, zearalenone, deoxynivalenol, fusarenon X, sterigmatocystin, T-2 toxin, HT-2 toxin, enniatins A, A1, B and B2, and beauvericin). The samples were analysed by solid-liquid extraction followed by liquid chromatography coupled with fluorescence or mass spectrometry detection. Enniatin B was found in 100% of the samples (up to 1200 µg/kg) and beauvericin in more than 90%. Moreover, 40% of samples were contaminated with more than five mycotoxins. This high occurrence is insurmountable and surpasses all previous studies, probably due to the inclusion of emerging mycotoxins, scarcely explored. The majority of the samples (96.9%) were in accordance with EU regulations, which do not address emerging mycotoxins or co-occurrence. These results show that in order to ensure mycotoxin absence, emerging mycotoxins should always be considered. Full article
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