Inhibition of the myotoxic activity of Bothrops jararacussu venom and its two major myotoxins, BthTX-I and BthTX-II, by the aqueous extract of Tabernaemontana catharinensis A. DC. (Apocynaceae)
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Partial neutralization of the myotoxic effect of Bothrops jararacussu venom (BV) and two of its myotoxins [bothropstoxin-I (BthTX-I), catalytically inactive, and II (BthTX-II), showing low PLA(2) activity], by the lyophilized aqueous extract of Tabernaemontana catharinensis (AE), was studied in rat isolated soleus muscle preparations (in vitro) and through i.m. injection in the gastrocnemius muscle (in vivo) by determination of creatine kinase (CK) activity and histopathological analysis. Incubation of soleus muscle for 1 h with BV or toxins (20 mug/ml) plus AE (400 mug/ml) added immediately after BV, BthTX-I or BthTX-II reduced CK levels by 53%, 37% and 56%, respectively. The myonecrotic effects of BV (20 mug/ml) upon soleus muscle was reduced 24%, 35% and 36% when AE (400 mug/ml) was added 1 h after BV and CK was evaluated 30 min, 1 and 2 h later, respectively. For BthTX-I these values were 46%, 48% and 47%, while for BthTX-II no inhibitory effect was detected. Histological analysis of soleus muscle after incubation with AE (400 mug/ml, I h) did not reveal any change in muscle fibers, but severe necrosis induced by -BV or toxins (20 mug/ml) was clearly in evidence, and decreased significantly when soleus muscle was protected by AE. This protection was also observed when AE was administered 1 h after BV or BthTX-I, but not after BthTX-II. AE did not inhibit the catalytic PLA(2), activity of BthTX-II or BV and did not change the PAGE pattern of BV, BthTX-I or BthTX-II. In vivo assays were performed in 100-g rats and maximal CK release was attained at a dose of 100 mug of BV, 3 h after injection. AE was not effective when injected 20 s after BV or toxins. However, injecting BV or toxins (100 mug), which were pre-incubated with AE (2 mg) caused an inhibition of 57%, 59% and 51%, respectively, with zero time pre-incubation, but was less effective with I h pre-incubation. This plant represents a potential source of promising myotoxin inhibitors. (C) 2004 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.