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Title: Structurally conserved α-neurotoxin genes encode functionally diverse proteins in the venom of Naja sputatrix
Authors: Jeyaseelan, K. 
Poh, S.L. 
Nair, R.
Armugam, A. 
Keywords: α-Neurotoxin
Accelerated evolution
Naja sputatrix
Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor
Weak neurotoxin
Issue Date: 2003
Citation: Jeyaseelan, K., Poh, S.L., Nair, R., Armugam, A. (2003). Structurally conserved α-neurotoxin genes encode functionally diverse proteins in the venom of Naja sputatrix. FEBS Letters 553 (3) : 333-341. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: The structure and organization of the genes encoding the long-chain neurotoxins and four other isoforms of weak neurotoxins in the venom of Naja sputatrix are reported. The genes contained three exons interrupted by two introns, a structure similar to other members of the three-finger toxin family. The proteins encoded by these genes, however, show varied affinity towards nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. Phylogenetic analysis of these genes showed that the weak neurotoxin gene is confined to a distinct group. We also observe that specific mutations of the gene provide the diversity in function in these toxins while maintaining a common structural scaffold. This forms the first report where the molecular basis of evolution of postsynaptic neurotoxins from an ancestral gene can be demonstrated using the same species of snake. © 2003 Federation of European Biochemical Societies. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Source Title: FEBS Letters
ISSN: 00145793
DOI: 10.1016/S0014-5793(03)01039-1
Appears in Collections:Staff Publications

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