Studies on the Venom of Echis Colorata

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  • Rogoff Medical Research Institute of the Labour Sick Fund and the Department of Pathology, Beilinson Hospital, Petah Tiqra, Israel
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Toxicological, biochemical and immunological studies were carried out on the venom of Echis colorata Günther 1878 and its chromatographic fractions.

The in vivo effects of the venom in mice were hemorrhage, nervous system disturbance, anemia, thrombocytopenia and afibrinogenemia. The LD50 in mice weighing 20 g was 31 µg by the intraperitoneal route and 11.5 µg by the intravenous route. In vivo activities of the venom were protease, phosphatidase, erythrocyte sphering, hyaluronidase, l-amino acid oxidase, procoagulant, anticoagulant, fibrinogenolysin and fibrinolysin.

Evidence is presented that the hemorrhages are mainly due to damage of the blood vessel walls, whereas the afibrinogenemia and the thrombocytopenia are contributing factors.

A specific rabbit antiserum was able to neutralize the lethal activity, the hemorrhagic activity and the protease of the venom, but not the other forementioned activities. Partial cross immunity with anti-Vipera palestinae horse serum was established.