8.B.12 The Spider Toxin (STx2) Family
Phoneutria nigriventer toxins, PnTx2-5 and PnTx2-6, markedly delay the fast inactivation kinetics of neuronal-type sodium channels, but they have differences in their interactions with the channel (Matavel et al., 2009). PnTx2-6 has an affinity 6 times higher than that of PnTx2-5, and its effects are not reversible within 10-15 min of washing. PnTx2-6 partially (59%) competes with the scorpion alpha-toxin AaHII, but not with the scorpion beta-toxin CssIV, thus suggesting a mode of action similar to that of site 3 toxins. However, PnTx2-6 is not removed by strong depolarizing pulses, as in the known site 3 toxins. Matavel et al., 2009 also established that the cysteines in these poorly helical toxins are in their oxidized form.