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Chuck Kristensen chuck at spiderpharm.com
Sat Feb 20 17:08:58 EST 1999

Karen wrote:
>.... Could  you clarify something please Chuck.  When you write that
> the venoms may act synergistically, I get the idea that you mean one
spider has
> more than one type of toxin in it's venom.   Is this correct?


A venom from a single spider venom contain dozens or even hundreds of
different toxins, often including toxins with slightly different activities
against the same receptors, toxins which are selective for different
subtypes, homomers or hetermoers of receptors (e.g. potoassium channels),
toxins with completely different modes of action and toxins with very
similar modes of action but are selective towards different kinds of

For instance, Latrodectus (widow spiders) have different toxins which are
selective for vertebrates, insects and crustacea. Agelenopsis (grass
spiders) have toxins which can distinguish different kinds of calcium
channels (e.g. N, L and P types) and Agelenopsis also has an assortment of
sodium channel agonists and glutamate receptor blockers.


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