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Toxins 2014, 6(3), 796-815;

Overview of Scorpion Species from China and Their Toxins

State Key Laboratory of Virology, College of Life Sciences, Wuhan University, Wuhan 430072, China
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 13 December 2013 / Revised: 16 January 2014 / Accepted: 18 January 2014 / Published: 26 February 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Scorpion Toxins 2013)
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Scorpions are one of the most ancient groups of terrestrial animals. They have maintained a steady morphology over more than 400 million years of evolution. Their venom arsenals for capturing prey and defending against predators may play a critical role in their ancient and conservative appearance. In the current review, we present the scorpion fauna of China: 53 species covering five families and 12 genera. We also systematically list toxins or genes from Chinese scorpion species, involving eight species covering four families. Furthermore, we review the diverse functions of typical toxins from Chinese scorpion species, involving Na+ channel modulators, K+ channel blockers, antimicrobial peptides and protease inhibitors. Using scorpion species and their toxins from China as an example, we build the bridge between scorpion species and their toxins, which helps us to understand the molecular and functional diversity of scorpion venom arsenal, the dynamic and functional evolution of scorpion toxins, and the potential relationships of scorpion species and their toxins. View Full-Text
Keywords: scorpion; fauna; toxin; function; evolution; relationship scorpion; fauna; toxin; function; evolution; relationship

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Cao, Z.; Di, Z.; Wu, Y.; Li, W. Overview of Scorpion Species from China and Their Toxins. Toxins 2014, 6, 796-815.

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