Special Issue "Cnidarian Venom"

A special issue of Toxins (ISSN 2072-6651). This special issue belongs to the section "Marine and Freshwater Toxins".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 25 November 2022 | Viewed by 6087

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Margarita Monastyrnaya
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Laboratory of Peptide Chemistry, G.B. Elyakov Pacific Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry, Far Eastern Branch, Russian Academy of Sciences, 159, Pr. 100 let Vladivostoku, Vladivostok 690022, Russia
Interests: investigation of peptides and polypeptides produced by the sea anemones: neurotoxins, alpha-pore-forming toxins (actinoporins), APETx-like toxins/peptides, inhibitors of Kunitz-type; searching of new members of peptides; studying of peptide structure-functional relationships and mechanisms of interaction with biological targets (various subtypes of Kv, Nav, and ASICs channel, TRPV1 receptor, serine proteases, cytoplasmic membranes); identification of pharmacological potential and perspectives applying.
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The search and the study of effective pharmacological compounds with high specificity of an action on biological targets is one of the priority areas of modern life sciences, which is stipulated by the spread of severe pathologies and infections that are difficult to treat among the population. One of the most promising natural sources of such compounds is the venom produced by marine animals of phylum Cnidaria (sea anemones, corals, jellyfishes, and hydroids). They are a complex mixture of toxins both of protein and nonprotein nature. Used by animals for protection, prey capture and digestion, as well as intraspecific competition, these compounds act at low concentrations, but with high specificity for biological targets, such as proteases, cytoplasmic membranes, ion channels/receptors that play a functionally important role in physiological processes of different organisms. By modulating the functional activity of biological targets in a pathological state, cnidarian toxins are able to exert a pharmacological effect.

This Special Issue is focused on research works devoted to the search for and identification of new functionally active compounds produced by сnidarians, the determination of their structures and molecular mechanisms of interaction with biological targets, including the modulating effect of agonists and antagonists on ion channels participating in the pathological processes of cardiovascular and nervous systems, the development of oncology, etc., the assessment of the pharmacological and therapeutic potential of compounds by in vivo, in vitro, and in silico methods, as well as the achievements of omix technologies in the study of structure–functional relationships and genetic diversity of protein compounds. Editors also welcome review articles summarizing experimental results and achievements in the abovementioned research areas as well short reports on new original experimental and theoretical works devoted to these unique marine venomous animals.

Dr. Margarita Monastyrnaya
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • cnidarian phylum
  • venom evolution
  • peptides
  • toxins
  • structure
  • function
  • activity
  • biological templates
  • pharmacological potential

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

Article
A Sea Anemone Lebrunia neglecta Venom Fraction Decreases Boar Sperm Cells Capacitation: Possible Involvement of HVA Calcium Channels
Toxins 2022, 14(4), 261; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins14040261 - 07 Apr 2022
Viewed by 732
Abstract
Sea anemones produce venoms characterized by a complex mixture of low molecular weight compounds, proteins and peptides acting on voltage-gated ion channels. Mammal sperm cells, like neurons, are characterized by their ion channels. Calcium channels seem to be implicated in pivotal roles such [...] Read more.
Sea anemones produce venoms characterized by a complex mixture of low molecular weight compounds, proteins and peptides acting on voltage-gated ion channels. Mammal sperm cells, like neurons, are characterized by their ion channels. Calcium channels seem to be implicated in pivotal roles such as motility and capacitation. In this study, we evaluated the effect of a low molecular weight fraction from the venom of the sea anemone Lebrunia neglecta on boar sperm cells and in HVA calcium channels from rat chromaffin cells. Spermatozoa viability seemed unaffected by the fraction whereas motility and sperm capacitation were notoriously impaired. The sea anemone fraction inhibited the HVA calcium current with partial recovery and no changes in chromaffin cells’ current kinetics and current–voltage relationship. These findings might be relevant to the pharmacological characterization of cnidarian venoms and toxins on voltage-gated calcium channels. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cnidarian Venom)
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Article
Trial Assay for Safe First-Aid Protocol for the Stinging Sea Anemone Anemonia viridis (Cnidaria: Anthozoa) and a Severe Toxic Reaction
Toxins 2022, 14(1), 27; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins14010027 - 01 Jan 2022
Viewed by 827
Abstract
Anemonia viridis is an abundant and widely distributed temperate sea anemone that can form dense congregations of individuals. Despite the potential severity of its sting, few detailed cases have been reported. We report a case of a severe toxic reaction following an A. [...] Read more.
Anemonia viridis is an abundant and widely distributed temperate sea anemone that can form dense congregations of individuals. Despite the potential severity of its sting, few detailed cases have been reported. We report a case of a severe toxic reaction following an A. viridis sting in a 35-year-old oceanographer. She developed severe pain, itching, redness, and burning sensation, which worsened one week after treatment with anti-inflammatories, antihistamines and corticosteroids. Prompted by this event, and due to the insufficient risk prevention, lack of training for marine-environment users, and lack of research into sting-specific first-aid protocols, we evaluated the cnidocyst response to five different compounds commonly recommended as rinse solutions in first-aid protocols (seawater, vinegar, ammonia, baking soda, and freshwater) by means of the Tentacle Solution Assay. Vinegar and ammonia triggered an immediate and massive cnidocyst discharge after their application and were classified as activator solutions. Baking soda and freshwater were also classified as activator solutions, although with a lower intensity of discharge. Only seawater was classified as a neutral solution and therefore recommended as a rinse solution after A. viridis sting, at least until an inhibitory solution is discovered. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cnidarian Venom)
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Article
Differing Effects of Vinegar on Pelagia noctiluca (Cnidaria: Scyphozoa) and Carybdea marsupialis (Cnidaria: Cubozoa) Stings—Implications for First Aid Protocols
Toxins 2021, 13(8), 509; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins13080509 - 21 Jul 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2519
Abstract
The jellyfish species that inhabit the Mediterranean coastal waters are not lethal, but their stings can cause severe pain and systemic effects that pose a health risk to humans. Despite the frequent occurrence of jellyfish stings, currently no consensus exists among the scientific [...] Read more.
The jellyfish species that inhabit the Mediterranean coastal waters are not lethal, but their stings can cause severe pain and systemic effects that pose a health risk to humans. Despite the frequent occurrence of jellyfish stings, currently no consensus exists among the scientific community regarding the most appropriate first-aid protocol. Over the years, several different rinse solutions have been proposed. Vinegar, or acetic acid, is one of the most established of these solutions, with efficacy data published. We investigated the effect of vinegar and seawater on the nematocyst discharge process in two species representative of the Mediterranean region: Pelagia noctiluca (Scyphozoa) and Carybdea marsupialis (Cubozoa), by means of (1) direct observation of nematocyst discharge on light microscopy (tentacle solution assay) and (2) quantification of hemolytic area (tentacle skin blood agarose assay). In both species, nematocyst discharge was not stimulated by seawater, which was classified as a neutral solution. In P. noctiluca, vinegar produced nematocyst discharge per se, but inhibited nematocyst discharge from C. marsupialis. These results suggest that the use of vinegar cannot be universally recommended. Whereas in case of a cubozoan C. marsupialis sting, the inhibitory effect of vinegar makes it the ideal rinse solution, in case of a scyphozoan P. noctiluca sting, vinegar application may be counterproductive, worsening the pain and discomfort of the stung area. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cnidarian Venom)
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Communication
Field Experiment Effect on Citrus Spider Mite Panonychus citri of Venom from Jellyfish Nemopilema nomurai: The Potential Use of Jellyfish in Agriculture
Toxins 2021, 13(6), 411; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins13060411 - 10 Jun 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1221
Abstract
Jellyfish are rich in resources and widely distributed along coastal areas. As a potential approach to respond to jellyfish blooms, the use of jellyfish-derived products is increasing. The citrus spider mite (Panonychus citri) is one of the key citrus pests, negatively [...] Read more.
Jellyfish are rich in resources and widely distributed along coastal areas. As a potential approach to respond to jellyfish blooms, the use of jellyfish-derived products is increasing. The citrus spider mite (Panonychus citri) is one of the key citrus pests, negatively impacting the quality and quantity of oranges. Due to the resistance and residue of chemical acaricides, it is important to seek natural substitutes that are environmentally friendly. The field efficacy of the venom from the jellyfish Nemopilema nomurai against P. citri was assayed in a citrus garden. The frozen N. nomurai tentacles were sonicated in different buffers to isolate the venom. The venom isolated by PBS buffer (10 mM, pH 6.0) had the strongest acaricidal activity of the four samples, and the corrected field efficacy 7 days after treatment was up to 95.21%. This study demonstrated that jellyfish has potential use in agriculture. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cnidarian Venom)
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