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J Proteomics. 2009 Mar 6;72(2):127-36. doi: 10.1016/j.jprot.2009.01.009. Epub 2009 Jan 18.

Evolution and diversification of the Toxicofera reptile venom system.

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Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, Bio21 Institute, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, 3010, Australia.


The diversification of the reptile venom system has been an area of major research but of great controversy. In this review we examine the historical and modern-day efforts of all aspects of the venom system including dentition, glands and secreted toxins and highlight areas of future research opportunities. We use multidisciplinary techniques, including magnetic resonance imaging of venom glands through to molecular phylogenetic reconstruction of toxin evolutionary history, to illustrate the diversity within this integrated weapons system and map the timing of toxin recruitment events over the toxicoferan organismal evolutionary tree.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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