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Tim Jenkins: An improved technique for the assessment of venom-induced haemorrhage in a murine model

last modified Oct 23, 2017 01:00 PM

Congratulations to Tim Jenkins, 2015 cohort PhD student in the BBSRC DTP Programme, for publishing the paper An improved technique for the assessment of venom-induced haemorrhage in a murine model in Toxicon.

Haemorrhage is a common clinical manifestation in envenomings caused by bites from snakes of the family Viperidae. Therefore, knowing the haemorrhagic potential of venoms and the capacity of antivenoms to neutralise this effect are of paramount relevance in toxinology. The most widely used method for quantifying haemorrhage involves the intradermal injection of venom (or a mixture of venom/antivenom) in mice, and the assessment of the resulting haemorrhagic area in the inner side of the skin. Although this method allows a straightforward assessment of the haemorrhagic activity of a venom, it does not account for haemorrhagic lesions having a similar area but differing in the depth and intensity of haemorrhage. We have developed an approach that allows the assessment of both area and intensity of a venom-induced haemorrhagic lesion using computational tools and propose a unit to represent the combination of these two factors as a measure of haemorrhage intensity, namely haemorrhagic unit (HaU). A strong correlation was observed between haemoglobin extracted from a haemorrhagic lesion and the associated HaUs. The method was used to determine the haemorrhagic activity of the venoms of Bothrops asperEchis ocellatus and Crotalus basiliscus and the haemorrhage neutralising capabilities of the three associated antivenoms. Overall, the ease of use, as well as the time involved in this new method, makes its implementation very feasible in the determination of haemorrhagic activity of venoms and its neutralisation by antivenoms in the murine model.

Read the full paper here.

Poster: An improved technique for the assessment of venom-induced haemorrhage in mice


Explore more research by Tim:

Infections by human gastrointestinal helminths are associated with changes in faecal microbiota diversity and composition 

This Gut Ain't Big Enough for Both of Us. Or Is It? Helminth-Microbiota Interactions in Veterinary Species

Changes in duodenal tissue-associated microbiota following hookworm infection and consecutive gluten challenges in humans with coeliac disease

Helminth infections and gut microbiota - a feline perspective


Tim is currently researching parasite-host-microbiota interactions in the lab of Dr Cinzia Cantacessi in the Department of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Cambridge. As part of the BBSRC DTP Programme Tim completed rotation projects in Veterinary Medicine and in the Department of Genetics with Professor Anne Ferguson-Smith. Tim completed his three month internship at Instituto Clodomiro Picado in Costa Rica where he evaluated the analytical performance of antivenomics. His latest paperAn improved technique for the assessment of venom-induced haemorrhage in a murine model—reports on work completed during his internship.

Tim Jenkins PIPS Head/Director 23-10-17 News Article 

Tim Jenkins and José María Gutiérrez in Costa Rica.