Characterisation of Elevenin-Vc1 from the Venom of Conus victoriae: A Structural Analogue of α-Conotoxins

Bankala Krishnarjuna, Punnepalli Sunanda, Jeffrey Seow, Han Shen Tae, Samuel D. Robinson, Alessia Belgi, Andrea J. Robinson, Helena Safavi-Hemami, David J. Adams, Raymond S. Norton

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Elevenins are peptides found in a range of organisms, including arthropods, annelids, nematodes, and molluscs. They consist of 17 to 19 amino acid residues with a single conserved disulfide bond. The subject of this study, elevenin-Vc1, was first identified in the venom of the cone snail Conus victoriae (Gen. Comp. Endocrinol. 2017, 244, 11–18). Although numerous elevenin sequences have been reported, their physiological function is unclear, and no structural information is available. Upon intracranial injection in mice, elevenin-Vc1 induced hyperactivity at doses of 5 or 10 nmol. The structure of elevenin-Vc1, determined using nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, consists of a short helix and a bend region stabilised by the single disulfide bond. The elevenin-Vc1 structural fold is similar to that of α-conotoxins such as α-RgIA and α-ImI, which are also found in the venoms of cone snails and are antagonists at specific subtypes of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). In an attempt to mimic the functional motif, Asp-Pro-Arg, of α-RgIA and α-ImI, we synthesised an analogue, designated elevenin-Vc1-DPR. However, neither elevenin-Vc1 nor the analogue was active at six different human nAChR subtypes (α1β1εδ, α3β2, α3β4, α4β2, α7, and α9α10) at 1 µM concentrations.

Original languageEnglish
Article number81
Number of pages15
JournalMarine Drugs
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2023


  • nicotinic acetylcholine receptors
  • NMR
  • three-dimensional structure

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