Periódicos Brasileiros em Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia

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Antivenomics as a tool to improve the neutralizing capacity of the crotalic antivenom: a study with crotamine

Teixeira-Araújo, RicardoCastanheira, PatríciaBrazil-Más, LeonoraPontes, FranciscoAraújo, Moema Leitão deAlves, Maria Lucia MachadoZingali, Russolina BenedetaCorrea-Netto, Carlos

BackgroundSnakebite treatment requires administration of an appropriate antivenom that should contain antibodies capable of neutralizing the venom. To achieve this goal, antivenom production must start from a suitable immunization protocol and proper venom mixtures. In Brazil, antivenom against South American rattlesnake (Crotalus durissus terrificus) bites is produced by public institutions based on the guidelines defined by the regulatory agency of the Brazilian Ministry of Health, ANVISA. However, each institution uses its own mixture of rattlesnake venom antigens. Previous works have shown that crotamine, a toxin found in Crolatus durissus venom, shows marked individual and populational variation. In addition, serum produced from crotamine-negative venoms fails to recognize this molecule.MethodsIn this work, we used an antivenomics approach to assess the cross-reactivity of crotalic antivenom manufactured by IVB towards crotamine-negative venom and a mixture of crotamine-negative/crotamine-positive venoms.ResultsWe show that the venom mixture containing 20% crotamine and 57% crotoxin produced a strong immunogenic response in horses. Antivenom raised against this venom mixture reacted with most venom components including crotamine and crotoxin, in contrast to the antivenom raised against crotamine-negative venom.ConclusionsThese results indicate that venomic databases and antivenomics analysis provide a useful approach for choosing the better venom mixture for antibody production and for the subsequent screening of antivenom cross-reactivity with relevant snake venom components.(AU)

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