Ann Psychiatr Clin Neurosci | Volume 5, Issue 1 | Research Article | Open Access

Isolation and Purification of Bitis arietans (Puff Adder) Venom Proteins and Its Effect on Blood Chemistry of Envenomated Wistar Rats

Oluwatofunmi Victoria Olaniyan and Osaretin Albert Taiwo Ebuehi*

Department of Biochemistry, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Nigeria

*Correspondance to: Osaretin Albert Taiwo Ebuehi 

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Puff adders (Bitis arietans) are one of the most medically important African snake species, because they are likely responsible for a large portion of the 32,000 snake bite deaths that occur in sub- Saharan Africa annually. These snakes have highly modified saliva known as snake venom which is an extremely hemotoxic venom that prevents formation of platelets in the bloodstream and also leads to extreme pain, swelling, tissue necrosis, and spontaneous bleeding. This study isolated and purified the proteins from the snake venom of the Puff adder (Bitis arietans) and to ascertain the effect of blood chemistry on the envenomized Wistar rats. The protein concentration was determined using Bradford Assay, and purified using Sodium Dodecyl Sulphate-Polyacrylamide Gel Electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE). Twenty Wistar rats were envenomated and their blood chemistry examined. The concentration of proteins in the venom of the Puff Adder (Bitis arietans) was 121.66 ± 7.94 μg/ml. Five protein bands were obtained in regions between 45 kDa and 66.2 kDa, 25 kDa, 18.4 kDa using Sephadex gel chromatography, between 14.4 kDa and 18.4 kDa and 14.4 kDa molecular weights. The five different proteins were identified in the snake venom on distinct bands on the SDS-PAGE Electrophoregram. There were significant differences in some of the hematological parameters of the Wistar rats envenomated with the snake venom (study group) when compared to that of the control group. Differences between the groups were considered significant at P<0.05. The results showed significantly higher lymphocytes, White Blood Cells (WBCs) and neutrophils blood level in the envenomated group which serves as indications of an infection in the body system. There was also a significant reduction in Red Blood Cells (RBCs) of the study group, which indicates possible hemorrhage. The serum AST, ALP, ALT activities and creatinine levels of the envenomated rats were also found to be significantly lower than the control group. Results of this study suggest that the snake venom proteins which were isolated and purified could serve as protein markers for antivenom therapy and could be used for the development of new therapeutic and diagnostic tools in the pharmaceutical industry relevant for human medicine.


Bitis arietans; Venom proteins; Envenomated proteins; Hematological; Biochemical parameters; Rats


Olaniyan OV, Ebuehi OAT. Isolation and Purification of Bitis arietans (Puff Adder) Venom Proteins and Its Effect on Blood Chemistry of Envenomated Wistar Rats. Ann Psychiatr Clin Neurosci. 2022; 5(1): 1045..

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