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Toxins 2017, 9(7), 214;

Screening and Validation of Highly-Efficient Insecticidal Conotoxins from a Transcriptome-Based Dataset of Chinese Tubular Cone Snail

1,†, 2,†, 3, 4, 1,* and 2,*
Hainan Provincial Key Laboratory of Research and Development of Tropical Medicinal Plants, Hainan Medical University, Haikou 571199, China
Shenzhen Key Lab of Marine Genomics, Guangdong Provincial Key Lab of Molecular Breeding in Marine Economic Animals, BGI Academy of Marine Sciences, BGI Marine, BGI, Shenzhen 518083, China
Hainan Provincial Key Laboratory of Carcinogenesis and Intervention, Hainan Medical University, Haikou 571199, China
School of Agricultural and Forestry Science and Technology, Hainan Radio & TV University, Haikou 570028, China
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Academic Editors: Vítor Vasconcelos and Luis M. Botana
Received: 2 June 2017 / Revised: 29 June 2017 / Accepted: 30 June 2017 / Published: 6 July 2017
(This article belongs to the Collection Marine and Freshwater Toxins)
PDF [1966 KB, uploaded 6 July 2017]


Most previous studies have focused on analgesic and anti-cancer activities for the conotoxins identified from piscivorous and molluscivorous cone snails, but little attention has been devoted to insecticidal activity of conotoxins from the dominant vermivorous species. As a representative vermivorous cone snail, the Chinese tubular cone snail (Conus betulinus) is the dominant Conus species inhabiting the South China Sea. We sequenced related venom transcriptomes from C. betulinus using both the next-generation sequencing and traditional Sanger sequencing technologies, and a comprehensive library of 215 conotoxin transcripts was constructed. In our current study, six conotoxins with potential insecticidal activity were screened out from our conotoxin library by homologous search with a reported positive control (alpha-conotoxin ImI from C. imperialis) as the query. Subsequently, these conotoxins were synthesized by chemical solid-phase and oxidative folding for further insecticidal activity validation, such as MTT assay, insect bioassay and homology modeling. The final results proved insecticidal activities of our achieved six conotoxins from the transcriptome-based dataset. Interestingly, two of them presented a lot of high insecticidal activity, which supports their usefulness for a trial as insecticides in field investigations. In summary, our present work provides a good example for high throughput development of biological insecticides on basis of the accumulated genomic resources. View Full-Text
Keywords: conotoxin; insecticidal activity; Conus betulinus; Chinese tubular cone snail conotoxin; insecticidal activity; Conus betulinus; Chinese tubular cone snail

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Gao, B.; Peng, C.; Lin, B.; Chen, Q.; Zhang, J.; Shi, Q. Screening and Validation of Highly-Efficient Insecticidal Conotoxins from a Transcriptome-Based Dataset of Chinese Tubular Cone Snail. Toxins 2017, 9, 214.

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