Snake venoms are aqueous solutions containing peptides and proteins with various biochemical, physiological, and pathophysiological effects. Several snake venom components are used as lead molecules in the development of new active substances for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases, clotting disorders, cancer or pain.
Antibacterial activity has also been attributed to snake venoms and proteins isolated from snake venoms. This study provides information regarding the antibacterial activity of venoms obtained from various snake species from the Elapidae and Viperidae families. Minimum inhibitory and bactericidal concentrations of snake venoms were determined for three Gram-positive (Enterococcus faecalis ATCC 29212, Staphylococcus aureus ATCC 29213, and Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus ATCC 43300) and three Gram-negative (Escherichia coli ATCC 25922, Klebsiella pneumoniae ATCC 13883, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa ATCC 27853) pathogenic bacteria. The observed effects were correlated with the protein content of each venom, determined using SDS-PAGE analysis and comparison with data available in the literature. Our findings represent a starting point for the selection of snake venoms containing components with potential use as lead molecules in the development of new antibacterial agents, targeting multidrug resistant bacterial strains.