Comparative toxinology of Loxosceles reclusa and Corynebacterium pseudotuberculosis

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Science  03 May 1985:
Vol. 228, Issue 4699, pp. 590-591
DOI: 10.1126/science.3983643


In contrast to other kinds of phospholipases, phospholipases D that are toxic for humans and animals are not commonly encountered as constituents of venoms or as products of pathogenic microorganisms. Toxic phospholipases D are present, however, in the venom of the brown recluse spider (Loxosceles reclusa) and in supernatants or filtrates of cultures of Corynebacterium pseudotuberculosis. Although the two enzyme toxins are derived from phylogenetically disparate entities, they are similar in molecular weight, charge, substrate specificity, and in several biological activities. They are immunologically distinguishable.