1st Edition

Handbook of Venoms and Toxins of Reptiles

ISBN 9780849391651
Published July 14, 2009 by CRC Press
552 Pages 13 Color & 48 B/W Illustrations

USD $165.00

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Book Description

The Handbook of Venoms and Toxins of Reptiles offers "one-stop shopping" to all biologists, biochemists, toxicologists, physicians, clinicians, and epidemiologists, and informed laypersons interested in the biology of venomous reptiles, the biochemistry and molecular biology of venoms, and the effects and treatment of human envenomation. This book examines the topic generally, provides an overview of the current taxonomy of these reptiles, explains the similarities and differences in the venom delivery apparatus in different groups of reptiles, reviews state-of-the-art knowledge about specific venom components and their action, and summarizes effects of envenomation and treatment in humans on different continents.

Produced by leading toxinologists, biologists, biochemists, and physicians from 12 countries, the book provides a broad, international perspective that bridges divergent areas in modern biology. A synthesis of current knowledge about venoms and venomous reptiles, it contains a wealth of illustrations, including an 8-page color insert, that present a view of reptile toxinology from the whole animal to the glands producing venoms to the molecular models and the mechanisms of actions of the toxins themselves.

The book provides a context for understanding the range of activities present in venoms and supplies detailed information on many enzymes and toxins found in them, bringing into focus the worldwide extent of the occurrence and complexity of human envenomations by reptiles. It explores the unique and interesting results produced by collaborations between specialists from very different fields and how they can stimulate new and continued interest in research on venoms and the animals that produce them.

Table of Contents

Field of Reptile Toxinology: Snakes, Lizards, and Their Venoms, S.P. Mackessy
Recent Advances in Venomous Snake Systematics, A. Quijada-Mascareñas and W. Wüster
Reptile Venom Glands: Form, Function, and Future, S.A. Weinstein, T.L. Smith, and K.V. Kardong
Snake Venom Metalloproteinases, J.W. Fox and S.M.T. Serrano
Snake Venom Metalloproteinases: Biological Roles and Participation in the Pathophysiology of Envenomation, J.M. Gutiérrez, A. Rucavado, and T. Escalante
Thrombin-like Snake Venom Serine Proteinases, D.J. Phillips, S.D. Swenson, and F.S. Markland, Jr.
Snake Venom Nucleases, Nucleotidases, and Phosphomonoesterases, B.L. Dhananjaya, B.S. Vishwanath, and C.J.M. D’Souza
Snake Venom Phospholipase A2 Enzymes, R. Doley, X. Zhou, and R.M. Kini
Snake Venom Acetylcholinesterase, M. Ahmed, J.B.T. Rocha, V.M. Morsch, and M.R.C. Schetinger
Snake Venom L-Amino Acid Oxidases, N.-H. Tan and S.-Y. Fung
Hyaluronidases, a Neglected Class of Glycosidases from Snake Venom: Beyond a Spreading Factor, K. Kemparaju, K. S. Girish, and S. Nagaraju
Enzyme Inhibitors in Reptile Venoms and Innate Immunity to Snake Venoms, A.G. da Costa Neves-Ferreira, R.H. Valente, J. Perales, and G.B. Domont
Snake Venom Three-Finger Toxins, R.P. Hegde, N. Rajagopalan, R. Doley, and R.M. Kini
Sarafotoxins, the Snake Venom Homologs of the Endothelins, A. Bdolah
Fasciculins: Toxins from Mamba Venoms That Inhibit Acetylcholinesterase, A.L. Harvey
Cysteine-rich Secretory Proteins in Reptile Venoms, W.H. Heyborne and S.P. Mackessy
Snake Venomics and Disintegrins: Portrait and Evolution of a Family of Snake Venom Integrin Antagonists, J.J. Calvete, P. Juárez, and L. Sanz
Reptile C-type Lectins, X.-Y. Du and K.J. Clemetson
Snake Venom Nerve Growth Factors, M.F. Lavin, S. Earl, G. Birrell, L. St. Pierre, J. de Jersey, and P. Masci
The Role of Purine and Pyrimidine Nucleosides in Snake Venoms, S.D. Aird
Envenomation: Prevention and Treatment in Australia, J. White
Snakebite in Africa: Current Situation and Urgent Needs, J.-P. Chippaux
Envenomations by Reptiles in the United States, J. Smith and S. Bush
Snakebite Envenomation in Central America, J.M. Gutiérrez

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Stephen P. Mackessy is currently professor of biology in the School of Biological Sciences at the University of Northern Colorado (UNC). His research broadly encompasses the biology of venomous snakes and the biochemistry of snake venoms, and he has published over one hundred scientific papers, book chapters, and natural history notes.


"It is compact, packed with information, and more affordable than other existing handbooks on animal toxins. … There is no doubt that Mackessey has assembled the foremost experts in the field of toxinology and clinical management of envenomation to contribute to this volume. A particularly valuable feature of this book is the inclusion of topics that many toxinologists would perceive as marginal to the field, and which are often absent in similar volumes.

Ultimately, the strength of this volume lies in its ability to reveal the gaps in our knowledge as well as reviewing the knowledge itself. It provides a valuable snapshot of the field of reptile toxinology at the end of the first decade of the 21st Century, and for that it deserves a place on the bookshelf of anyone interested in venoms and envenomation."
—Anita Malhotra, School of Biological Sciences, College of Natural Sciences, Bangor University, United Kingdom, Copeia, June 2012

"… comfortably fills an existing hole in the literature for toxinologists, biochemists, physicians and herpetologists interested in natural toxins. Representing the most comprehensive review of reptile venoms for a number of years. This book provides a thorough and attractive exploration of the field of toxinology, with numerous colour (an eight page insert) and black and white figures supporting detailed text which primarily describes the molecular, structural and functional aspects of the toxic components that make some reptile venoms so potent. … a valuable addition to the shelf of anyone interested in venom biology …"
Herpetological Bulletin