Sequence and phylogenetic analysis of viper venom serine proteases
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Official URL: http://www.bioinformation.net/008/97320630008763.h...
Snakebites are a major neglected tropical disease responsible for as many as 95000 deaths every year worldwide. Viper venom serine proteases disrupt haemostasis of prey and victims by affecting various stages of the blood coagulation system. A better understanding of their sequence, structure, function and phylogenetic relationships will improve the knowledge on the pathological conditions and aid in the development of novel therapeutics for treating snakebites. A large dataset for all available viper venom serine proteases was developed and analysed to study various features of these enzymes. Despite the large number of venom serine protease sequences available, only a small proportion of these have been functionally characterised. Although, they share some of the common features such as a C-terminal extension, GWG motif and disulphide linkages, they vary widely between each other in features such as isoelectric points, potential N-glycosylation sites and functional characteristics. Some of the serine proteases contain substitutions for one or more of the critical residues in catalytic triad or primary specificity pockets. Phylogenetic analysis clustered all the sequences in three major groups. The sequences with substitutions in catalytic triad or specificity pocket clustered together in separate groups. Our study provides the most complete information on viper venom serine proteases to date and improves the current knowledge on the sequence, structure, function and phylogenetic relationships of these enzymes. This collective analysis of venom serine proteases will help in understanding the complexity of envenomation and potential therapeutic avenues.