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Novel peptide toxins from acrorhagi, aggressive organs of the sea anemone Actinia equina.

Honma T., Minagawa S., Nagai H., Ishida M., Nagashima Y., Shiomi K.

Two peptide toxins, acrorhagin I (50 residues) and II (44 residues), were isolated from special aggressive organs (acrorhagi) of the sea anemone Actinia equina by gel filtration on Sephadex G-50 and reverse-phase HPLC on TSKgel ODS-120T. The LD50 against crabs of acrorhagin I and II were estimated to be 520 and 80 microg/kg, respectively. 3'- and 5'-RACE established the amino acid sequences of the acrorhagin precursors. The precursor of acrorhagin I is composed of both signal and mature peptides and that of acrorhagin II has an additional sequence (propart) between signal and mature peptides. Acrorhagin I has no sequence homologies with any toxins, while acrorhagin II is somewhat similar to spider neurotoxins (hainantoxin-I from Selenocosmia hainana and Tx 3-2 from Phoneutria nigriventer) and cone snail neurotoxin (omega-conotoxin MVIIB from Conus magus). In addition, analogous peptides (acrorhagin Ia and IIa) were also cloned during RT-PCR experiments performed to confirm the nucleotide sequences of acrorhagins. This is the first to demonstrate the existence of novel peptide toxins in the sea anemone acrorhagi.

Toxicon 46:768-774(2005) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]

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