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More MS news articles for October 2003

Therapeutic potential of venom peptides

Nat Rev Drug Discov. 2003 Oct;2(10):790-802.
Lewis RJ, Garcia ML.
[1] Institute for Molecular Bioscience, The University of Queensland, St. Lucia 4072, Australia. [2] Xenome Ltd, 50 Meiers Rd, Indooroopilly 4068, Australia.

Venomous animals have evolved a vast array of peptide toxins for prey capture and defence.

These peptides are directed against a wide variety of pharmacological targets, making them an invaluable source of ligands for studying the properties of these targets in different experimental paradigms.

A number of these peptides have been used in vivo for proof-of-concept studies, with several having undergone preclinical or clinical development for the treatment of pain, diabetes, multiple sclerosis and cardiovascular diseases.

Here we survey the pharmacology of venom peptides and assess their therapeutic prospects.