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

Functional expression of alpha-latrotoxin in baculovirus system.

To facilitate the study of the mechanism of alpha-latrotoxin action, it is necessary to create a biologically active recombinant toxin. Mature alpha-latrotoxin is naturally produced by post-translational cleavage, probably at two furin sites located at the N- and C-termini of the precursor. A recombinant baculovirus has now been constructed, which encodes the melittin signal peptide fused to the 130-kDa mature toxin between the furin sites. Insect cells, infected with this baculovirus, secreted recombinant alpha-latrotoxin. This was partially purified and proved indistinguishable from the natural toxin with respect to its molecular mass, immunostaining, toxicity to mice, binding to alpha-latrotoxin receptors (latrophilin or neurexin Ialpha) and electrophysiological recording in the mouse diaphragm. The successful expression of recombinant alpha-latrotoxin permits mutational analysis of the toxin.[1]


  1. Functional expression of alpha-latrotoxin in baculovirus system. Volynski, K.E., Nosyreva, E.D., Ushkaryov, Y.A., Grishin, E.V. FEBS Lett. (1999) [Pubmed]
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