Crotoxin (CTX) is the major component of Crotalus durissus terrificus (South American rattlesnake) snake venom. CTX is a potent myotoxic neurotoxin that promotes both pre and postsynaptic blockage of neuromuscular transmission and rhabdomyolysis. However, despite its toxicity, CTX has potential therapeutic value due to its immunomodulatory, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, anti-tumor and anti-nociceptive activities. Thus, the development of pre-clinical studies in order to characterize the subacute toxicity of CTX is necessary. In this sense, considering that the neuromuscular junction is the main target of the toxic action of CTX, this project aims to assess the consequences of subacute administration tolerable doses of CTX on the structure and function of the neuromuscular junction and skeletal muscle of mice. To achieve these goals will be used an association of approaches, such as functional (myography in vitro), morphological (optical microscopy) and biochemical (creatine kinase dosage). In addition to providing the characterization and understanding of the side and adverse effects of subacute administration of CTX, this study will also contribute to increase the knowledge about pathophysiological processes of the neuromuscular junction using the CTX as a pharmacological tool.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: