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Enzymatic activity and brine shrimp lethality of venom from the large brown spitting cobra (Naja ashei) and its neutralization by antivenom

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Abstract

Objective: Naja ashei is a snake of medical importance in Kenya, Ethiopia, Somalia, Uganda, and Tanzania. Little is known about the enzymatic (snake venom phospholipases A2; svPLA2's) and toxic (lethal) activities of N. ashei venom and crucially, the safety and capacity of available antivenom to neutralize these effects. This study aimed to determine the enzymatic and toxic activities of N. ashei venom and the capacity of Indian and Mexican manufactured antivenoms to neutralize these effects. The protein content of the venom and the test antivenoms were also evaluated. A 12-point log concentration-response curve (0.5-22.5 μg/mL) was generated on an agarose-egg yolk model to predict the svPLA2 activity of the venom. The toxicity profiles of the venom and antivenoms were evaluated in the brine shrimp lethality assay. Lowry's method was used for protein estimation. Results: Low and intermediate concentrations of the venom exhibited similar svPLA2 activities. The same was true for concentrations > 15 μg/mL. Intermediate and high doses of the venom exhibited similar mortalities in brine shrimp and test antivenoms were generally non-toxic but poorly neutralized svPLA2 activity. Mexican manufactured antivenom had lower protein content but neutralized venom-induced brine shrimp lethality much more effectively than Indian manufactured antivenom.

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APA

Okumu, M. O., Mbaria, J. M., Gikunju, J. K., Mbuthia, P. G., Madadi, V. O., & Ochola, F. O. (2020). Enzymatic activity and brine shrimp lethality of venom from the large brown spitting cobra (Naja ashei) and its neutralization by antivenom. BMC Research Notes, 13(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s13104-020-05167-2

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