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Identification of peptides derived from crotoxin with antitumor and immunomodulatory potential in a cutaneous melanoma model and in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis model.

Grant number: 18/05637-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctoral
Effective date (Start): July 01, 2018
Effective date (End): May 14, 2020
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Pharmacology - General Pharmacology
Principal Investigator:Gisele Picolo
Grantee:Karina Cristina Giannotti
Host Institution: Instituto Butantan. Secretaria da Saúde (São Paulo - Estado). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


Crotoxin (CTX) is a neurotoxin isolated from Crotalus durissus terrificus snake venom that exhibits anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory and antitumor activities. In this sense, many studies have demonstrated that CTX exerts a striking antitumor effect in several types of tumor, such as cutaneous melanoma, a disease without cure. On the other hand, recently, our group has demonstrated that CTX is able to alter the developmental course and disease severity in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) model, an animal model of multiple sclerosis (MS), a neurodegenerative disease without cure, which affects thousands of people and represents a great personal and socioeconomic burden. It is worth to mention that drugs available for the treatment of MS and cutaneous melanoma are of low efficacy and induce many adverse effects, justifying the search for new molecules with more efficiency and free of side effects. Despite CTX intriguing actions on melanoma cells and in the EAE model, its use is limited by its toxicity, and the toxin fragment responsible for these effects remains unknown. In this regard, it is known that CTX is a non-patentable natural product and due to its complex structure its recombinant synthesis or production is impracticable, turning essential the identification of the toxin fragment responsible for these effects. Therefore, this study aims to evaluate antitumor and immunomodulatory activities of crotoxin fragments in a cutaneous and EAE model melanoma model, through in vivo and in vitro assays, in order to contribute to understand of the actions triggered by CTX and to reveal new therapeutic agents for the treatment of cutaneous melanoma and MS.

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Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
ZULIM DE CARVALHO, ANA EDUARDA; GIANNOTTI, KARINA; LEIGUEZ JUNIOR, ELBIO; MATSUBARA, MARCIO; DOS SANTOS, MARIA CRISTINA; FORTES-DIAS, CONSUELO LATORRE; TEIXEIRA, CATARINA. Crotalus durissus ruruima Snake Venom and a Phospholipase A(2) Isolated from This Venom Elicit Macrophages to Form Lipid Droplets and Synthesize Inflammatory Lipid Mediators. JOURNAL OF IMMUNOLOGY RESEARCH, v. 2019, . (15/24701-3, 14/18549-1, 18/05637-0, 15/50040-4)

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