Poison Frogs of the Neptropics

This discussion topic submitted by Cory Wagner ( cwags2@excite.com) at 12:18 pm on 4/6/01. Additions were last made on Monday, November 4, 2002.

intend to look the niche of the poison arrow frog in the rainforest, the chemical basis behind its toxicity, and benefits to humans
from historical (i.e. using arrows dipped in the poison to hunt) to current (possible medicinal use)as an indication of why these
endangered frogs should be conserved.


I. Introduction

II. Biology of Poison Frogs

A. Types of Poison Forgs
1. Genus
a. Dendrobates
1. species examples
b. Phyllobates
1. species examples
c. Epipedobates
1. species examples

B. Geographic Range
C. General Life Cycle
D. Habitat
E. Food and Foraging
F. Reproductive Behavior

III. Basis for Toxicity of Posion Frogs
A. Exposure Pathways
B. Basic Neurology of Mammals
C. Effects of Batrachotoxin (Main Toxin of Phyllobates)on the Nervous System
D. Other Isolated Toxins

IV. Human Uses of the Poison and Important Implications of their Conservation
A. Historical Native Uses
B. Modern Medical Research on the Toxins

V. Conclusion


1. Albuquerque, E.X., J.W. Daly, B. Witkop "Batrachotoxin: Chemistry and Pharmacology" Science, Vol. 172, Iss. 3987, June 4,
1971, pgs. 995-1002

2. Daly, John W. "The Chemistry of Poisons in Amphibian Skin" Proocedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United
States of America, Vol. 92, Iss. 1 Jan. 3, 1995, pg.s 9-13

3. Daly, Jon W. and Charles W. Meyers "Toxicity of Panamanian Poison Frogs (Dendrobates): Some Biological and Chemical
Aspects", Science, Vol. 56, Iss. 3777, May 19, 1967, pgs. 970-973

4. Dolci, Lillian et al. "Synthesis of a Fluorine-18 Labled Derivative of Epibatidine for In Vivo Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor
PET Imaging", Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry, Vol. 7, 1999, pgs. 467-479

5. Spang, Jorg E. et al. "Chemical Modification of epibatidine causes a switch from agonist to anatagonist and modifies its
selectivity for nueronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors" Chemistry and Biology, Vol. 7, No. 7, 2000, pgs. 545-555

6. Taigen, Theodore L. and F. Harvey Pough "Prey Preference, Foraging Behavior, and Metabolic Characteristics of Frogs",
American Naturalist, Vol. 122, Iss. 4, October 1983, pgs. 509-520

7. Walls, Jerry G. "The Guide to Owning Poison Frogs" T.F.H. Publications, Inc. Neptune City, New Jersey,

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