Oscar Sanchez, Texas A&M University – Kingsville

Antibacterial activity of 24 different snake venoms from families Viperidae and Elapidae

Abstract: Bacterial infection is a leading cause of death worldwide. The gradual emergence of populations of antibiotic-resistant bacteria resulting from use, misuse and outright abuse of antibiotics has today become a major public health problem of global proportions. The development of new, potent, and less toxic agents from natural sources against various infectious agents is an urgent medical need. In the last decade, a wide range of diverse, novel classes of natural antibiotics has been isolated from different snake species. The aims of this study were to investigate antimicrobial activity of 24 different snake venoms from families Viperidae and Elapidae against 6 different clinical bacteria strains including Staphylococcus aureus, Enterococcus faecalis (Gram-positive bacteria) and Escherichia coli, Salmonella enterica, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Klebsiella oxytoca (Gram-negative bacteria) using the Kirby-Bauer disc diffusion test and to determine the minimum inhibitory concentrations (MIC) of the most potent bactericidal-like venom using a broth microdilution assay. In vitro screening provides convincing evidence that several venoms have promising antibacterial effects against gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria, however, the bacterium S. aureus exhibited extreme vulnerability against all venoms examined. Venoms from the snakes Bothrops moojeni, Crotalus oreganus helleri, and Crotalus vergrandis were determined to be the most formidable against S. aureus. The present findings indicate that viperid venoms have significant antibacterial effects, which may be the result of the primary antibacterial components such as L-amino acid oxidases and PLA2 enzymes. The results will be useful for further purification and characterization of antibacterial agents from snake venoms which may serve as novel therapeutics for multidrug resistant bacteria or as a potential template for new medicines.

Presentation Author(s):
Oscar Sanchez*, Dr. Montamas Suntravat, and Dr. Elda E. Sanchez

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