Spitting cobra venoms evolved to cause extreme pain

22 Jan 2021

Venom from spitting cobras has evolved to cause predators extreme pain as a form of self-defence, rather than for capturing prey, according to new research.

An international team including scientists from The University of Queensland, made the discovery by studying the composition of spitting cobra venoms from three groups of snakes — Asian spitting cobras, African spitting cobras and rinkhals.

Contributors to the joint study include the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, University of California, University of Leiden, Cornell University, Swansea University, Nottingham Trent University, Bangor University, Universidad de Costa Rica, University of Bristol, University of São Paulo, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, and University of Oslo.

Read full story on UQ Contact Magazine

​This research was published in Science (DOI: 10.1126/science.abb9303).