New insights may help protect against snake venom toxicity

April 20, 2017, Wiley

New research may be useful for protecting against the toxic effects of snake venom.

Investigators have identified the specific protein that's targeted by and causes cells to detach from each other and induce internal bleeding. The team also noted that animals resistant to snake venom—such as opossums, hedgehogs, and camels—have a variation of this protein that may help protect them.

"We hope this study contributes to protecting against snake venom toxicity and elucidating the mechanisms involved," said Dr. Satohiko Araki, senior author of The FEBS Journal study.

Explore further: Snake venom may hold key to breaking down plaques that cause Alzheimer's disease

More information: Tadahiko Seo et al, Haemorrhagic snake venom metalloproteases and human ADAMs cleave LRP5/6, which disrupts cell-cell adhesionsand induces haemorrhage, The FEBS Journal (2017). DOI: 10.1111/febs.14066

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