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Eggs-only diet: its implications for the toxin profile changes and ecology of the marbled sea snake (Aipysurus eydouxii).
J Mol Evol. 2005 Jan; 60(1):81-9.JM

Abstract

Studies so far have correlated the variation in the composition of snake venoms with the target prey population and snake's diet. Here we present the first example of an alternative evolutionary link between venom composition and dietary adaptation of snakes. We describe a dinucleotide deletion in the only three finger toxin gene expressed in the sea snake Aipysurus eydouxii (Marbled Sea Snake) venom and how it may have been the result of a significant change in dietary habits. The deletion leads to a frame shift and truncation with an accompanying loss of neurotoxicity. Due to the remarkable streamlining of sea snake venoms, a mutation of a single toxin can have dramatic effects on the whole venom, in this case likely explaining the 50- to 100-fold decrease in venom toxicity in comparison to that of other species in the same genus. This is a secondary result of the adaptation of A. eydouxii to a new dietary habit--feeding exclusively on fish eggs and, thus, the snake no longer using its venom for prey capture. This was parallel to greatly atrophied venom glands and loss of effective fangs. It is interesting to note that a potent venom was not maintained for use in defense, thus reinforcing that the primary use of snake venom is for prey capture.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Biological Science, Faculty of Science, National University of Singapore, Singapore 119260.No affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Comparative Study
Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

15696370

Citation

Li, Min, et al. "Eggs-only Diet: Its Implications for the Toxin Profile Changes and Ecology of the Marbled Sea Snake (Aipysurus Eydouxii)." Journal of Molecular Evolution, vol. 60, no. 1, 2005, pp. 81-9.
Li M, Fry BG, Kini RM. Eggs-only diet: its implications for the toxin profile changes and ecology of the marbled sea snake (Aipysurus eydouxii). J Mol Evol. 2005;60(1):81-9.
Li, M., Fry, B. G., & Kini, R. M. (2005). Eggs-only diet: its implications for the toxin profile changes and ecology of the marbled sea snake (Aipysurus eydouxii). Journal of Molecular Evolution, 60(1), 81-9.
Li M, Fry BG, Kini RM. Eggs-only Diet: Its Implications for the Toxin Profile Changes and Ecology of the Marbled Sea Snake (Aipysurus Eydouxii). J Mol Evol. 2005;60(1):81-9. PubMed PMID: 15696370.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Eggs-only diet: its implications for the toxin profile changes and ecology of the marbled sea snake (Aipysurus eydouxii). AU - Li,Min, AU - Fry,B G, AU - Kini,R Manjunatha, PY - 2004/05/03/received PY - 2004/08/16/accepted PY - 2005/2/8/pubmed PY - 2005/5/10/medline PY - 2005/2/8/entrez SP - 81 EP - 9 JF - Journal of molecular evolution JO - J Mol Evol VL - 60 IS - 1 N2 - Studies so far have correlated the variation in the composition of snake venoms with the target prey population and snake's diet. Here we present the first example of an alternative evolutionary link between venom composition and dietary adaptation of snakes. We describe a dinucleotide deletion in the only three finger toxin gene expressed in the sea snake Aipysurus eydouxii (Marbled Sea Snake) venom and how it may have been the result of a significant change in dietary habits. The deletion leads to a frame shift and truncation with an accompanying loss of neurotoxicity. Due to the remarkable streamlining of sea snake venoms, a mutation of a single toxin can have dramatic effects on the whole venom, in this case likely explaining the 50- to 100-fold decrease in venom toxicity in comparison to that of other species in the same genus. This is a secondary result of the adaptation of A. eydouxii to a new dietary habit--feeding exclusively on fish eggs and, thus, the snake no longer using its venom for prey capture. This was parallel to greatly atrophied venom glands and loss of effective fangs. It is interesting to note that a potent venom was not maintained for use in defense, thus reinforcing that the primary use of snake venom is for prey capture. SN - 0022-2844 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/15696370/Eggs_only_diet:_its_implications_for_the_toxin_profile_changes_and_ecology_of_the_marbled_sea_snake__Aipysurus_eydouxii__ L2 - https://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00239-004-0138-0 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -