The venom of the spider Selenocosmia jiafu contains various neurotoxins acting on voltage-gated ion channels in rat dorsal root ganglion neurons.Toxins (Basel). 2014 Mar 05; 6(3):988-1001.T
Selenocosmia jiafu is a medium-sized theraphosid spider and an attractive source of venom, because it can be bred in captivity and it produces large amounts of venom. We performed reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC) and matrix-assisted laser-desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS) analyses and showed that S. jiafu venom contains hundreds of peptides with a predominant mass of 3000-4500 Da. Patch clamp analyses indicated that the venom could inhibit voltage-gated Na+, K+ and Ca2+ channels in rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. The venom exhibited inhibitory effects on tetrodotoxin-resistant (TTX-R) Na+ currents and T-type Ca2+ currents, suggesting the presence of antagonists to both channel types and providing a valuable tool for the investigation of these channels and for drug development. Intra-abdominal injection of the venom had severe toxic effects on cockroaches and caused death at higher concentrations. The LD50 was 84.24 μg/g of body weight in the cockroach. However, no visible symptoms or behavioral changes were detected after intraperitoneal injection of the venom into mice even at doses up to 10 mg/kg body weight. Our results provide a basis for further case-by-case investigations of peptide toxins from this venom.