Scorpion Venom Seems To Be Bad For Bugs And Good For Pesticides

Spotting A Scorpion In The Dark

Scorpion venom now appears as the new hope for protecting plants from bugs. Michigan State University scientists claim that scorpion venom helps get rid of bugs while being beneficial for pesticides. It was asserted that scorpion toxic venom is greatly usefulness in the development of insecticides.

Its venom probably attacks various channels and receptors that control their prey’s nervous and muscular systems. One of the major targets of scorpion toxins may be the voltage-gated sodium channel, a protein in nerve and muscle cells. This protein is possibly used for rapid electrical signaling.

During the research, Ke Dong, MSU insect toxicologist and neurobiologist and colleagues were able to detect amino acid residues within insect sodium channels. These channels are apparently more vulnerable to the venom from the Israeli desert scorpion. It was pointed out that an important sodium channel voltage sensor can seemingly influence the potency of the scorpion toxin. Understanding the venom’s effect on the voltage-gated sodium channel can allegedly open doors to valuable information for designing new insecticides that work by selectively targeting insect sodium channels.

The research is published in the current issue of the Journal of Biological Chemistry.

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