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Structural and functional analysis of BmjMIP, a phospholipase A2myotoxin inhibitor protein fromBothrops moojenisnake plasma

Elsevier Inc.
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1016/s0006-291x(03)00155-4
  • Phospholipase A2Inhibitor
  • Snake Plasma
  • Myotoxin
  • Bothrops Moojeni
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Medicine
  • Pharmacology


Abstract A protein, which neutralizes the enzymatic, toxic, and pharmacological activities of various basic and acidic phospholipases A 2 from the venoms of Bothrops moojeni, Bothrops pirajai, and Bothrops jararacussu, was isolated from B. moojeni snake plasma by affinity chromatography using immobilized myotoxins on Sepharose gel. Biochemical characterization of this myotoxin inhibitor protein (BmjMIP) showed it to be an oligomeric glycoprotein with a M r of 23,000–25,000 for the monomeric subunit. BmjMIP was stable in the pH range from 4.0 to 12.0, between 4 and 80 °C, even after deglycosylation. The role of the carbohydrate moiety was investigated and found not to affect the in vitro function of the inhibitor. The corresponding 500 bp cDNA obtained by RT-PCR from the liver of the snake encodes a mature protein of 166 amino acid residues including a 19 amino acid signal peptide. The primary structure of BmjMIP showed a high similarity with other snake phospholipase A 2 inhibitors (PLIs) in which the carbohydrate recognition domain (CRD) and the glycosylation site (Asn103) are conserved. Circular dichroism spectroscopy indicated that no significant alterations in the secondary structure of either the BmjMIP or the target protein occur upon their interaction. BmjMIP has a wide range of inhibitory properties against basic and acidic PLA 2s from Bothrops venoms (anti-enzymatic, anti-myotoxic, anti-edema inducing, anti-cytotoxic, anti-bactericidal, and anti-lethal). However, the inhibitor showed a reduced ability to neutralize the biological activities of crotoxin B (CB), the PLA 2 homologue associated with crotapotin in Crotalus durissus terrificus snake venom. Finally, the purified PLA 2 inhibitor was shown to protect in vivo against the toxic and pharmacological effects of a homologous PLA 2 enzyme, suggesting that PLIs or a corresponding derived peptide may prove useful in the treatment of snakebite victims or, more importantly, in the treatment of the many human diseases in which these enzymes have been implicated.

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