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Comment published on 30 August 2016, see Toxins 2016, 8(9), 252.
Open AccessArticle

PhTx3-4, a Spider Toxin Calcium Channel Blocker, Reduces NMDA-Induced Injury of the Retina

Institute of Education and Research Santa Casa Belo Horizonte-Laboratory of Toxins, Rua Domingos Vieira 590, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais 30150-240, Brazil
Ezequiel Dias Foundation (FUNED), Laboratory of Biochemistry, Rua Conde Pereira Carneiro 80, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais 30510-010, Brazil
Faculty of Medicine, Minas Gerais Federal University, Neuroscience Laboratory, Av. Alfredo Balena 190, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais 30130-100, Brazil
Department of Dentistry, Montes Claros State University, University Hospital, Health Laboratory Research, Montes Claros, Montes Claros, Minas Gerais 39401-001, Brazil
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Jean-Marc Sabatier
Toxins 2016, 8(3), 70;
Received: 1 November 2015 / Revised: 26 January 2016 / Accepted: 1 March 2016 / Published: 11 March 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Arthropod Venoms)
The in vivo neuroprotective effect of PhTx3-4, a spider toxin N-P/Q calcium channel blocker, was studied in a rat model of NMDA-induced injury of the retina. NMDA (N-Methyl-d-Aspartate)-induced retinal injury in rats reduced the b-wave amplitude by 62% ± 3.6%, indicating the severity of the insult. PhTx3-4 treatment increased the amplitude of the b-wave, which was almost equivalent to the control retinas that were not submitted to injury. The PhTx3-4 functional protection of the retinas recorded on the ERG also was observed in the neuroprotection of retinal cells. NMDA-induced injury reduced live cells in the retina layers and the highest reduction, 84%, was in the ganglion cell layer. Notably, PhTx3-4 treatment caused a remarkable reduction of dead cells in the retina layers, and the highest neuroprotective effect was in the ganglion cells layer. NMDA-induced cytotoxicity of the retina increased the release of glutamate, reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and oxidative stress. PhTx3-4 treatment reduced glutamate release, ROS production and oxidative stress measured by malondialdehyde. Thus, we presented for the first time evidence of in vivo neuroprotection from NMDA-induced retinal injury by PhTx3-4 (-ctenitoxin-Pn3a), a spider toxin that blocks N-P/Q calcium channels. View Full-Text
Keywords: Neuroprotection; retina; phoneutria nigriventer; spider toxins; PhTx3-4 Neuroprotection; retina; phoneutria nigriventer; spider toxins; PhTx3-4
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Binda, N.S.; Porto Petruceli Carayon, C.; Agostini, R.M.; Do Nascimento Pinheiro, A.C.; Nascimento Cordeiro, M.; Romano Silva, M.A.; Figueira Silva, J.; Rita Pereira, E.M.; Da Silva Junior, C.A.; De Castro Junior, C.J.; Sena Guimarães, A.L.; Gomez, M.V. PhTx3-4, a Spider Toxin Calcium Channel Blocker, Reduces NMDA-Induced Injury of the Retina. Toxins 2016, 8, 70.

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