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Review

Scorpion Toxins and Ion Channels: Potential Applications in Cancer Therapy

1
Laboratory of Toxinology, Department of Physiological Sciences, Institute of Biology, University of Brasília, Brasília DF 70910-900, Brazil
2
Brazilian Center for Protein Research, Department of Cell Biology, Institute of Biology, University of Brasília, Brasília DF 70910-900, Brazil
3
Research Group on Immunology and Infectious Diseases, Department of Pathology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Cauca, 5th Street # 4-70, Popayán 190001, Colombia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 18 February 2020 / Revised: 14 April 2020 / Accepted: 15 April 2020 / Published: 15 May 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Venoms)
Apoptosis, a genetically directed process of cell death, has been studied for many years, and the biochemical mechanisms that surround it are well known and described. There are at least three pathways by which apoptosis occurs, and each pathway depends on extra or intracellular processes for activation. Apoptosis is a vital process, but disturbances in proliferation and cell death rates can lead to the development of diseases like cancer. Several compounds, isolated from scorpion venoms, exhibit inhibitory effects on different cancer cells. Indeed, some of these compounds can differentiate between healthy and cancer cells within the same tissue. During the carcinogenic process, morphological, biochemical, and biological changes occur that enable these compounds to modulate cancer but not healthy cells. This review highlights cancer cell features that enable modulation by scorpion neurotoxins. The properties of the isolated scorpion neurotoxins in cancer cells and the potential uses of these compounds as alternative treatments for cancer are discussed. View Full-Text
Keywords: apoptosis; cancer; cell death; ion channels; scorpion toxins apoptosis; cancer; cell death; ion channels; scorpion toxins
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MDPI and ACS Style

Dueñas-Cuellar, R.A.; Santana, C.J.C.; Magalhães, A.C.M.; Pires, O.R., Jr.; Fontes, W.; Castro, M.S. Scorpion Toxins and Ion Channels: Potential Applications in Cancer Therapy. Toxins 2020, 12, 326. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/toxins12050326

AMA Style

Dueñas-Cuellar RA, Santana CJC, Magalhães ACM, Pires OR Jr., Fontes W, Castro MS. Scorpion Toxins and Ion Channels: Potential Applications in Cancer Therapy. Toxins. 2020; 12(5):326. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/toxins12050326

Chicago/Turabian Style

Dueñas-Cuellar, Rosa A., Carlos J.C. Santana, Ana C.M. Magalhães, Osmindo R. Pires Jr., Wagner Fontes, and Mariana S. Castro 2020. "Scorpion Toxins and Ion Channels: Potential Applications in Cancer Therapy" Toxins 12, no. 5: 326. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/toxins12050326

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