Abstract in English:Among the diseases of viral origin, rabies is unique in its distribution and range of victims since it can afflict all warm-blooded animals. The interaction between the virus and the host population has facilitated the survival of the disease. The rabies virus (RV) has not changed in any significant way and has been capable of taking advantage of conditions suited to the continuance of rabies. Infection by RV is invariably lethal in the absence of protective immune response which, however, can contribute to the pathogenesis of rabies. Proinflammatory cytokines might affect, directly or indirectly, the levels of neurotrophins, growth factors, neurotransmitters and neurotoxins in the brain by activating glia, neurons, and vascular and immune cells. Although understanding of the bases for neuronal dysfunction and neuronal death during RV infection has progressed, no fundamental abnormality has been identified so far.
Abstract in English:Rabies is a severe and lethal disease that produces a slight inflammatory response during the infection process. We analyzed the immunopathological mechanisms that occur in the central nervous system (CNS) using mice genetically selected for maximal or minimal acute inflammatory reaction (AIRmax or AIRmin). As viral samples, we adopted the antigenic variant 3 (AgV3) of rabies virus from hematophagous bats and a fixed virus strain (PV1 43/3). Titration of specific antibodies was performed using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). We observed a slight increase in IgG and IgG1 isotypes in infected AIRmax mice. Incubation period, determined by intracerebral inoculation with 100 LD50, was 6-7 days for PV1 43/4 strain and 9-10 days for AgV3. No difference in viral replication was noticed between AIRmax and AIRmin mice. Mortality was 100% with both viral strains. Histopathological analysis of brains and spinal cords showed inflammatory foci in all regions of the CNS. No differences were noticed in the number of neutrophils. Negri bodies were observed in practically all sites analyzed. Results suggested that inflammatory reaction is not a determining factor in the susceptibility to rabies infection.
Abstract in English:Snake venoms are toxic to a variety of cell types. However, the intracellular damages and the cell death fate induced by venom are unclear. In the present work, the action of the South American rattlesnake Crotalus durissus terrificus venom on CHO-K1 cell line was analyzed. The cells CHO-K1 were incubated with C. d. terrificus venom (10, 50 and 100g/ml) for 1 and 24 hours, and structural alterations of actin filaments, endoplasmic reticulum and nucleus were assessed using specific fluorescent probes and agarose gel electrophoresis for DNA fragmentation. Significant structural changes were observed in all analyzed structures. DNA fragmentation was detected suggesting that, at the concentrations used, the venom induced apoptosis.
Abstract in English:Scorpions can be considered living fossils because they have changed so little during the last 400 million years. They are venomous arthropods of the Arachnida class and regarded as relatives of spiders, ticks and mites. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the toxicity of Androctonus crassicauda (Olivier, 1807) venom and its effects on the acetylcholinesterase (AchE) activity and on electrolytes levels in rats. Animals were divided into seven groups of five rats each. Test groups received 250µg/kg of venom solution while control group was treated with 200µl of physiological saline solution (PSS). Blood samples were collected from the animals on the 1st, 2nd 4th, 8th, 12th, and 24th hours after subcutaneous injection of venom. Animals were monitored for 24 hours. Androctonus crassicauda venom significantly reduced AchE activity on the 12th hour when compared with control group. A statistically negative correlation between Na+ and K+ (p<0.05) and a positive correlation between Na+ and CL- (p<0.001) ions levels were observed after the administration of A. crassiccauda venom to rats. We can conclude that the differences in the electrolytes levels are due to acute renal failure, since elimination of toxin occurs primarily via the kidney.
Abstract in English:Red scorpion (Mesobuthus tamulus or Buthus tamulus) venom samples were collected at different regions of India: western (Chiplun and Ahmednagar from Maharashtra State) and southern (Ratnagiri and Chennai from Tamil Nadu State). The action of whole venoms on the blood sodium levels of mice was assessed using flame photometry. Seven peptides were common to all venom samples. They were separated using the native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (PAGE) technique and their activities were also studied using flame photometry. There was a decrease in the concentration of sodium ions in the serum, which suggested the blockage of such ions by scorpion venom toxins. Among the 10 protein bands isolated, the band at 79.6 kDa presented maximum activity in decreasing serum sodium ions concentration. Whole venom from Chiplun region also showed maximum activity. The western blotting technique demonstrated that the anti-scorpion venom sera produced by Haffkine Biopharmaceuticals Corporation Ltd., India, neutralized all four venom samples.
Abstract in English:Scorpion envenomation is common in many countries; however, its effects on pregnancy are still unclear. In the present paper, we described the effects of scorpion envenomation on pregnant patients. A retrospective study was carried out considering the clinical and laboratory exams of patients admitted to the emergency room of Habib Bourguiba Hospital, Sfax, Tunisia, from 1990 to 2004. Variability of these clinical and laboratory profiles according to maternal age, gestational age and number of previous parities was also discussed. Among 167 scorpion-envenomed women, age ranged from 17 to 42 years, 7.18% were pregnant. These presented symptoms similar to those of non-pregnant women envenomed by scorpions. Two pregnant patients developed intense pelvic pain and one manifested vaginal bleeding. Although the studied parameters showed non-significant differences, we could conclude that scorpion envenomation may lead to abnormal uterine contraction probably causing preterm delivery. Maternal disturbances induced by scorpion envenomation may influence the fetus development. The effects were more severe in the second trimester of pregnancy.
Abstract in English:Two presynaptic phospholipases A2 (PLA2), neuwieditoxin-I (NeuTX-I) and neuwieditoxin-II (NeuTX-II), were isolated from the venom of Bothrops neuwiedi pauloensis (BNP). The venom was fractionated using molecular exclusion HPLC (Protein-Pak 300SW column), followed by reverse phase HPLC (µBondapak C18 column). Tricine-SDS-PAGE in the presence or absence of dithiothreitol showed that NeuTX-I and NeuTX-II had a molecular mass of approximately 14 kDa and 28kDa, respectively. At 10µg/ml, both toxins produced complete neuromuscular blockade in indirectly stimulated chick biventer cervicis isolated preparation without inhibiting the response to acetylcholine, but NeuTX-II reduced the response to KCl by 67.0±8.0% (n=3; p<0.05). NeuTX-I and NeuTX-II are probably responsible for the presynaptic neurotoxicity of BNP venom in vitro. In fact, using loose patch clamp technique for mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm preparation, NeuTX-I produced a calcium-dependent blockade of acetylcholine release and caused appearance of giant miniature end-plate potentials (mepps), indicating a pure presynaptic action. The N-terminal sequence of NeuTX-I was DLVQFGQMILKVAGRSLPKSYGAYGCYCGWGGRGK (71% homology with bothropstoxin-II and 54% homology with caudoxin) and that of NeuTX-II was SLFEFAKMILEETKRLPFPYYGAYGCYCGWGGQGQPKDAT (92% homology with Basp-III and 62% homology with crotoxin PLA2). The fact that NeuTX-I has Q-4 (Gln-4) and both toxins have F-5 (Phe-5) and Y-28 (Tyr-28) strongly suggests that NeuTX-I and NeuTX-II are Asp49 PLA2.
Abstract in English:The aim of the present study was to evaluate the frequency of rhabdiasid nematodes in recently captured Crotalus durissus terrificus snakes from São Paulo State, Brazil. Fifty snakes (34 males and 16 females) were studied and each one was evaluated for the presence of that nematode at the moment of receipt at the Institution and after 90 days of quarantine inside individual cages. Tracheopulmonary washeswere examined. Snakes that died during quarantine underwent necropsy and lung examination. Analysis of the results obtained at the two evaluation times (0 and 90 days), in addition to the data obtained during necropsies, showed that 44% (18 males and 4 females) of the C. d. terrificus snakes were naturally infected by rhabdiasid nematodes. These data demonstrate the parasitism level in natural conditions and are important for the sanitary handling of these reptiles in captivity.
Abstract in English:Snakebite is a common medical emergency in the tropics, causing multisystemic involvement. Ophthalmic manifestations after snakebite have included ptosis and ophthalmoplegia. Uveitis as an immunological complication following therapy with anti-snake venom (ASV) serum has been rarely reported in literature. We reported two patients who developed uveitis and acute renal failure following snakebite treatment with ASV serum. Both patients recovered uneventfully with appropriate therapy.