Venom


Scorpions are an iconic group of arachnids that are central to investigations of arthropod terrestrialization, morphological stasis, and diversification of body plans. To scientists and laypersons, scorpions are particularly fascinating for the diversity of their venom, a complex mixture of bioactive compounds, rich in toxins with a broad array of biological targets, including those affecting ion channels such as Na+, K+, Cl- and Ca2+. Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) has changed the way we can study many aspects in biological sciences, including the diversity and evolution of scorpion venom using transcriptomic analysis. To facilitate access to the venom gland transcriptomes generated in a study published recently (Santibáñez-López et al. in press), this site, Scorpion venom, was established. Searches for ortholog venom components were conducted in the peptide files generated from the de novo scorpion assemblies in different studies (Sharma et al., 2015; 2018; Santibáñez-López et al. in press). For each scorpion species, an interpro data file, a .fasta file, and a .faa file were created. These files contained headings used to establish the structure of this database. In addition, BLAST searches can be conducted using a specific query.



References

Sharma, P.P., Fernández, R., Esposito, L., González-Santillán, E. and Monod, L. 2015. Phylogenomic resolution of scorpions reveals multilevel discordance with morphological phylogenetic signal. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B: Biological Sciences 282: 20142953.

Sharma, P.P., Baker, C.M., Cosgrove, J.G., Johnson, J.E., Oberski, J.T., Raven, R.J., Harvey, M.S., Boyer, S.L. and Giribet, G. 2018. A revised dated phylogeny of scorpions: Phylogenomics support for ancient divergence of the temperate Gondwanan family Bothriuridae. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 122: 37-45.

Santibáñez-López, C.E., Kriebel, R., Ballesteros, J.A., Rush, N., Witter, Z., Williams, J., Janies, D. and Sharma, P.P. In press. Integration of phylogenomics and molecular modeling reveals lineage-specific diversification of toxins in scorpions. PeerJ.