Next Article in Journal
Mycotoxins—Biomonitoring and Human Exposure
Next Article in Special Issue
Snake Venom Proteomics, Immunoreactivity and Toxicity Neutralization Studies for the Asiatic Mountain Pit Vipers, Ovophis convictus, Ovophis tonkinensis, and Hime Habu, Ovophis okinavensis
Previous Article in Journal
Extensive Variation in the Activities of Pseudocerastes and Eristicophis Viper Venoms Suggests Divergent Envenoming Strategies Are Used for Prey Capture
Previous Article in Special Issue
A Wolf in Another Wolf’s Clothing: Post-Genomic Regulation Dictates Venom Profiles of Medically-Important Cryptic Kraits in India
Communication

The Curious Case of the “Neurotoxic Skink”: Scientific Literature Points to the Absence of Venom in Scincidae

1
Evolutionary Venomics Lab, Centre for Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore 560012, Karnataka, India
2
Department of Emergency Medicine, Jubilee Mission Medical College and Research Institute, Thrissur 680005, Kerala, India
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 27 December 2020 / Revised: 26 January 2021 / Accepted: 1 February 2021 / Published: 3 February 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Drivers of Venom Potency across the Animal Kingdom)
In contrast to the clearly documented evolution of venom in many animal lineages, the origin of reptilian venom is highly debated. Historically, venom has been theorised to have evolved independently in snakes and lizards. However, some of the recent works have argued for the common origin of venom in “Toxicofera” reptiles, which include the order Serpentes (all snakes), and Anguimorpha and Iguania lizards. Nevertheless, in both these contrasting hypotheses, the lizards of the family Scincidae are considered to be harmless and devoid of toxic venoms. Interestingly, an unusual clinical case claiming neurotoxic envenoming by a scincid lizard was recently reported in Southern India. Considering its potentially significant medicolegal, conservation and evolutionary implications, we have summarised the scientific evidence that questions the validity of this clinical report. We argue that the symptoms documented in the patient are likely to have resulted from krait envenomation, which is far too frequent in these regions. View Full-Text
Keywords: venom evolution; the origin of reptilian venom; neurotoxic venoms in skinks venom evolution; the origin of reptilian venom; neurotoxic venoms in skinks
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

Sunagar, K.; Abraham, S.V. The Curious Case of the “Neurotoxic Skink”: Scientific Literature Points to the Absence of Venom in Scincidae. Toxins 2021, 13, 114. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/toxins13020114

AMA Style

Sunagar K, Abraham SV. The Curious Case of the “Neurotoxic Skink”: Scientific Literature Points to the Absence of Venom in Scincidae. Toxins. 2021; 13(2):114. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/toxins13020114

Chicago/Turabian Style

Sunagar, Kartik, and Siju V. Abraham 2021. "The Curious Case of the “Neurotoxic Skink”: Scientific Literature Points to the Absence of Venom in Scincidae" Toxins 13, no. 2: 114. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/toxins13020114

Find Other Styles
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Back to TopTop