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Latest Venom Stories

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2010-01-14 11:35:00

Abandon any notion that the duck-billed platypus is a soft and cuddly creature -- maybe like Perry the Platypus in the Phineas and Ferb cartoon. This platypus, renowned as one of the few mammals that lay eggs, also is one of only a few venomous mammals. The males can deliver a mega-sting that causes immediate, excruciating pain, like hundreds of hornet stings, leaving victims incapacitated for weeks. Now scientists are reporting an advance toward deciphering the chemical composition of the...

2010-01-12 09:37:00

NEW YORK, Jan. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Animal adventurer and venom expert Donald Schultz has traveled worldwide to collect venom and DNA from rare animals for his television series WILD RECON (Tuesdays at 9 PM on Animal Planet). Each week, Donald gets his hands on some of the deadliest animals on the planet: black mambas in South Africa, sea snakes in Australia, and even rampaging elephants in Sri Lanka. But in January, he will face his toughest challenge yet: to spend 10 consecutive days...

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2010-01-11 11:25:00

TAU researcher uses scorpion venom to develop a safe and ecologically sound pest control method Scorpions deliver a powerful, paralyzing venom "” a complex cocktail of poisonous peptides "” that immobilize animal prey on the spot. Some of the toxins in this cocktail damage only insects, which is why a Tel Aviv University researcher is harnessing them to create a safe and ecologically sound pesticide. Prof. Michael Gurevitz of Tel Aviv University's Department of Plant Sciences has...

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2009-12-11 10:45:00

Name all the venomous animals you can think of and you probably come up with snakes, spiders, bees, wasps and perhaps poisonous frogs. But catfish? A new study by University of Michigan graduate student Jeremy Wright finds that at least 1,250 and possibly more than 1,600 species of catfish may be venomous"”far more than previously believed. The research is described in a paper published online Dec. 4 in the open access journal BMC Evolutionary Biology. Lest anyone have concerns about...

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2009-12-04 08:58:12

In contrast to the exhaustive research into venom produced by snakes and spiders, venomous fish have been neglected and remain something of a mystery. Now, a study of 158 catfish species, published in the open access journal BMC Evolutionary Biology, has catalogued the presence of venom glands and investigated their biological effects. Jeremy Wright, from the University of Michigan, USA, carried out the investigation. He said, "I used histological and toxicological techniques to elucidate the...

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2009-11-19 08:39:05

Research could help lead to antivenoms and treatments With thousands of stinging cells that can emit deadly venom from tentacles that can reach ten feet in length, the 50 or so species of box jellyfish have long been of interest to scientists and to the public. Yet little has been known about the evolution of this early branch in the animal tree of life. In a paper published November 18 in the Proceedings of the Royal Society, NOAA researchers Allen Collins, Bastian Bentlage and Cheryl Lewis...

2009-10-29 15:56:36

A harmless digestive enzyme evolved twice into a dangerous toxin in 2 unrelated species Biologists have shown that independent but similar molecular changes turned a harmless digestive enzyme into a toxin in two unrelated species -- a shrew and a lizard -- giving each a venomous bite. The work, described this week in the journal Current Biology by researchers at Harvard University, suggests that protein adaptation may be a highly predictable process, one that could eventually help discover...

2009-09-16 10:40:27

While studying a way to more safely and effectively collect snake venom, University of Florida researchers have noticed the venom delivered by an isolated population of Florida cottonmouth snakes may be changing in response to their diet. Scientists used a portable nerve stimulator to extract venom from anesthetized cottonmouths, producing more consistent extraction results and greater amounts of venom, according to findings published in August in the journal Toxicon. The study of venoms is...

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2009-08-17 16:00:00

Researchers in China have discovered the first protein-based toxin in an amphibian "“a 60 amino acid neurotoxin found in the skin of a Chinese tree frog. This finding may help shed more light into both the evolution of amphibians and the evolution of poison.While gene-encoded protein toxins have been identified in many vertebrate animals, including fish, reptiles and mammals, none have yet been found in amphibians or birds. In the case of poisonous amphibians, like the tropical poison...

2009-07-09 16:31:07

A Chinese team of scientists has identified the protein composition of venom from the Scorpiops jendeki scorpion. Wuhan University researchers said their findings -- from the first venom analysis of the arachnid -- uncovered nine novel poison molecules never before seen in a scorpion species. The scientists led by Yibao Ma of the university's Laboratory of Virology studied the sting of S. jendeki, a member of the family Euscorpiidae, which covers Europe, Asia, Africa and North America. Our...


Latest Venom Reference Libraries

Amazonian Giant Centipede, Scolopendra gigantean
2014-01-12 00:00:00

Image Caption: Puerto Rican Giant Centipede, Scolopendra gigantea; Vieques, Puerto Rico. Credit: Katka Nemčoková/Wikipedia  (CC BY-SA 3.0) The Amazonian giant centipede (Scolopendra gigantean), also known as the Peruvian giant yellow-leg centipede, can be found in areas of the Caribbean and South America. Its range includes Saint Thomas, Grenada, Jamaica, the U.S. Virgin Islands, the island of seychelles Puerto Rico, Saint Martin, the Trinidad Islands, and western and northern regions...

Giant Redheaded Centipede, Scolopendra heros
2014-01-12 00:00:00

The Scolopendra heros, also referred to as the Giant Redheaded Centipede, calls parts of the southern central and southwestern United States, as well as a significant portion of Mexico, its home. It has not been found west of the Colorado River. Varying in length from 6.5 to 8 inches, its trunk has 21 to 23 pairs of legs. The body is aposematically colored. This is a defensive coloration meant to scare off potential predators. There are several color varients within the species, depending...

Elongate Surgeonfish, Acanthurus mata
2012-04-02 17:23:07

The Elongate Surgeonfish, (Acanthurus mata), is a species of tropical fish found in the Indo-Pacific, and can be found as far north as Southern Japan and south to the Great Barrier Reef. Some also live as far west as South Africa and as far east as the Tuamotu Islands. Its main habitat is steep slopes around coral reefs. This is a light blue fish with numerous brown stripes running down the length of the body, although over time it is able to change color to become blue overall. It has a...

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2009-05-02 21:49:31

The Six-eyed Sand Spider (Sicarius hahni) is a species of arachnid found in southern Africa. It is found mostly in deserts and other sandy areas. The genus name, sicarius, is Latin for "murderer" or "assassin". This species is named after arachnologist Carl Wilhelm Hahn. The binomial name is interpreted as "Hahn's assassin". Due to the flattened stance and position of the legs, this species is also sometimes known as the Six-eyed Crab Spider. Studies of the venom of this spider have led...

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2007-02-12 21:23:02

The Black Mamba, Dendroaspis polylepis, is a venomous snake from Africa. They can be found in scrub land, bushes and small trees. They tend to live in permanent lairs for long periods if not disturbed. They usually make their homes in vacated insect mounds or hollow trees. The Black Mamba is the largest venomous snake in Africa and the second largest venomous snake in the world. It grows to an average length of 8 feet and may even grow to over 14 feet. It gets its name from the inky...

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