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Nat Neurosci. 2001 Sep;4(9):902-7.

Two new classes of conopeptides inhibit the alpha1-adrenoceptor and noradrenaline transporter.

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  • 1Institute for Molecular Bioscience, University of Queensland, Brisbane 4072, Australia.


Cone snails use venom containing a cocktail of peptides ('conopeptides') to capture their prey. Many of these peptides also target mammalian receptors, often with exquisite selectivity. Here we report the discovery of two new classes of conopeptides. One class targets alpha1-adrenoceptors (rho-TIA from the fish-hunting Conus tulipa), and the second class targets the neuronal noradrenaline transporter (chi-MrIA and chi-MrIB from the mollusk-hunting C. marmoreus). rho-TIA and chi-MrIA selectively modulate these important membrane-bound proteins. Both peptides act as reversible non-competitive inhibitors and provide alternative avenues for the identification of inhibitor drugs.

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