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Venom Toxins as Ion Channel Modulators

Nature’s ion channel modulators, present in animal venom.

Venom Toxins as Ion Channel Modulators

Nature’s ion channel modulators, present in animal venom, and available in synthetic, recombinant, native, and conjugated forms, all produced at Alomone Labs. Venom toxins and their widespread use as ion channel modulators have been a specialty of ours for over three decades. Over the years, we’ve worked to produce many toxins and peptides in native, synthetic or recombinant forms. Synthetic, and recombinant production conserves natural resources and allows us to create a uniquely pure toxin, free from any other compounds present in complex natural venom samples.

Each toxin that we produce is based on the latest research. We start with sequence alignment and validation before moving on to protein folding and multistep purification. The biological activity of the final product is assessed, followed by characterization with HPLC and mass spectroscopy. These assays are conducted by our team of biochemists, cellular biologists, and electrophysiologists. Each new lot of venom toxin is released only if it passes analytical analyses (HPLC and mass spectroscopy) and displays biological activity similar to previous lots. All venom toxins include detailed bioassay data, which reveals exactly how well they perform.

To allow visualization and functional studies, we offer toxins conjugated to reporters such as ATTO fluorophores, fluorescein isothiocyanate (FITC), or biotin.

All of our products are developed in-house. If you require a venom toxin conjugated to a specific reporter or need a novel or modified toxin, please contact us. 

Live Cell Microglia Marker Detection Panels

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Live intact mouse BV-2 cells were simultaneously stained by adding 5μg of the mentioned antibodies for 1 hour at 4°C. The cells were rinsed and analyzed by flow cytometry.

Anti-P2Y12 Receptor (extracellular)-PE Antibody

Cat # APR-095-F
Host Rabbit
Clonality Polyclonal
Cat # APR-095-F
Host Rabbit
Clonality Polyclonal
Cat # APR-095-F
Host Rabbit
Clonality Polyclonal

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Microglia, the resident macrophages of the central nervous system (CNS), make up approximately 10% of the CNS cell population and play a critical role in maintaining homeostasis, responding to injury and inflammation, and clearing cellular debris.

Dysregulation of microglia function has been implicated in a range of neurological disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease and multiple sclerosis. Given their vital function in brain health and disease, there is a growing interest in developing tools and techniques for identifying and studying microglia.

Microglia markers are specific proteins or molecules that are expressed by microglia and that are commonly used to identify and study these cells, to distinguish microglia from other cells, and to provide insights into dysfunctional states. The use of microglia markers can also help identify changes in microglial function that occur during injury or disease.

Microglia-specific markers include surface markers, intracellular markers, and functional markers. Surface markers are proteins found on the outer membrane of microglial cells and play a crucial role in identifying and characterizing cell types, activation and functional states, and disease-related implications. Intracellular markers are located inside microglial cells and are used to investigate specific cellular processes, signaling pathways, and activation states. Functional markers are associated with specific microglial functions, including inflammatory response, neuroprotection, tissue repair, and disease-associated changes. Microglia-specific markers serve as valuable tools for research, diagnostics, and potential therapeutic interventions targeting microglial activity in neurological conditions.

A widely used technique to analyze microglia markers is immunofluorescence (IF), which allows for the visualization and localization of specific molecules within cells or tissues. IF uses fluorescently labeled antibodies to detect and target specific proteins or antigens of interest. The obtained fluorescence images can be analyzed and quantified using image analysis software. Colocalization analysis can determine the degree of overlap between different microglia-specific markers, indicating potential interactions or colocalization within cells or tissues. Fluorescence intensity measurements can provide insights into relative protein expression levels and their subcellular localization patterns.

Microglia markers play a useful role in investigating various neurological diseases. Microglia play a crucial role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease, which is characterized by the accumulation of amyloid beta plaques and neurofibrillary tangles in the brain. Under normal conditions, microglia can phagocytose and clear amyloid beta plaques. In Alzheimer’s disease, microglia often exhibit an impaired ability to efficiently remove these toxic protein aggregates. The dysfunction of microglia in Alzheimer’s disease is believed to be a result of the chronic inflammatory environment and dysregulated immune response, which can exacerbate neurodegeneration.

In Parkinson’s disease, a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by the progressive loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra of the brain, microglia impairment decreases the clearance capacity of Lewy bodies, misfolded alpha-synuclein aggregates which are the hallmark of Parkinson’s disease. Chronic neuroinflammation mediated by microglia is thought to contribute to the progression of neurodegeneration in Parkinson’s disease.

Microglia respond to CNS injuries, such as traumatic brain injury (TBI) and spinal cord injury. Upon injury, microglia become activated and undergo morphological changes, migrating to the site of injury and releasing various factors, such as cytokines, chemokines, and reactive oxygen species, which can contribute to secondary damage and neuroinflammation after CNS injuries. Microglia also have beneficial functions in CNS injuries, such as promoting tissue repair, clearance of cellular debris, and releasing neurotrophic factors that support neuronal survival and regeneration. Modulating microglial activation and inflammatory responses is an area of active research for potential therapeutic interventions for CNS injuries.

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