Identification of the myotoxic site of the Lys49 phospholipase A2 from Agkistrodon piscivorus piscivorus snake venom: synthetic C-terminal peptides from Lys49, but not from Asp49 myotoxins, exert membrane-damaging activities
Núñez, Carlos E.
Angulo Ugalde, Yamileth
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Group II phospholipase A2 (PLA2) myotoxins found in the venoms of Crotalidae snakes can be divided into `Asp49' and `Lys49' isoforms, the latter being considered catalytically-inactive variants. Previous studies on one Lys49 isoform, myotoxin II from Bothrops asper, indicated that its myotoxic activity is due to the presence of a short cationic/hydrophobic sequence (115±129) near its C-terminus, which displays membrane-damaging properties. Since the C-terminal region of different group II PLA2 myotoxins presents considerable sequence variability, synthetic peptides homologous to region 115±129 of myotoxin II, but corresponding to B. asper myotoxin III (Asp49), Agkistrodon piscivorus piscivorus Asp49 PLA2 and Lys49 PLA2, were studied to determine the possible functional relevance of such region for the toxic activities of these proteins. Results showed that both Lys49-derived peptides (p-BaK49 and p-AppK49) were able to lyse skeletal muscle C2C12 cells in culture, and to induce edema in the mouse footpad assay. Moreover, p-AppK49, which showed a markedly stronger cytotoxic potency than p-BaK49, additionally induced skeletal muscle necrosis when injected into mice. These observations unequivocally identify the sequence 115±129 (KKYKAYFKLKCKK) of the Lys49 PLA2 of A. p. piscivorus as containing the key structural determinants needed for myotoxicity, and represent the ®rst report of an unmodi®ed, PLA2-derived short synthetic peptide with the ability to reproduce this effect of a parent toxin in vivo. On the other hand, the two Asp49-derived peptides did not show any toxic effects in vitro or in vivo, even at high concentrations. These ®ndings suggests that Lys49 and Asp49 group II PLA2s might exert their myotoxic actions through different molecular mechanisms, by implying that the latter may not utilize their C-terminal regions as main membrane-destabilizing elements.
External link to the item10.1016/S0041-0101(01)00141-6
- Microbiología