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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Structure-function relationships of sea anemone toxin II from Anemonia sulcata.

Chemical modifications of sea anemone toxin II from Anemonia sulcata have been used to study the residues involved in its toxic action on crabs and mice and in its binding properties to the Na+ channel of rat brain synaptosomes. Guanidination of th epsilon-amino groups of lysines 35, 36, and 46 with O-methylisourea hydrogen sulfate did not change the net charge of the toxin molecule and had no effect upon its toxic and binding properties. Either acetylation or fluorescamine treatment of the toxin that destroyed the positive charges of the three epsilon-amino groups and of the alpha-amino function of Gly produced an almost complete loss of toxicity and a considerable decrease in the binding activity. Iodination of the toxin on His induced practically no loss of toxic or binding properties. Carbethoxylation of both histidines 32 and 37 with diethyl pyrocarbonate provoked an important decrease of both the toxicity and the binding activity. Modifications of the guanidine side chain of Arg with 1,2-cyclohexanedione fully destroyed both toxicity and binding of the toxin to the Na+ channel. Modification of the carboxylate functions of Asp, Asp, and of the COOH-terminal Gln with glycine ethyl ester in the presence of a soluble carbodiimide completely abolished the toxicity but left the affinity for the sea anemone toxin receptor unchanged. The antagonist character of this carboxylate-modified derivative was further confirmed by electrophysiological and Na+ flux experiments. The theoretical and practical significance of these results are discussed.[1]


  1. Structure-function relationships of sea anemone toxin II from Anemonia sulcata. Barhanin, J., Hugues, M., Schweitz, H., Vincent, J.P., Lazdunski, M. J. Biol. Chem. (1981) [Pubmed]
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