Invited Seminar at CES on 29 November 2017 at 3:00 pm titled "Convergent evolution: stories of venoms and poisons in the animal kingdom" by Dr Nicholas Casewel from Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM),UKHost of the speakerDr. Kartik Sunagar
Venomous and poisonous animals are found distributed throughout the tree of life. While poisonous animals are toxic when their toxins are ingested, venomous animals use specialised apparatuses to inject their toxins in to afflicted animals. In this talk I will provide an overview of venoms and poisons found in the animal kingdom, with a specific focus on three “stories” that showcase how the theme of convergent evolution underpins the fascinating biology related to such animals. Specifically, I will talk about: (i) the convergent evolution of molecular resistance to cardiac glycoside-harbouring poisonous toads, (ii) the evolution of the fangblenny venom system and its relationship with mimicry, and (iii) the coagulopathic activity of snake venoms and how this relates to the medically important, global issue of snakebite.