Researchers in Brazil may have just discovered the stepping stone to the strangest treatment for Covid-19 after venom from a species of snake was able to effectively fight the virus.
A molecule found in the venom of the Jararacussu pit viper was able to preventing the coronavirus’ ability to multiply and intensify in monkey cells by a whopping 75 percent.
That means scientists could very soon be making an anti-Covid drug with snake venom!
The study was published in the journal Molecules, where one of the study authors from the University of Sao Paulo said the snake venom was capable to kill a very important protein that causes the virus.
« We were able to show that this component of the snake venom can inhibit a very important protein in the virus, » Reuters quoted Rafael Guido.
What is this snake venom molecule? The molecule is made up of a chain of amino acids (called a peptide). This chain can connect with the enzyme PLPro of the coronavirus.
This enzyme is primarily responsible for the replication of the virus. The peptide inhibited the enzyme without harming other cells, which revealed its scientific properties.
It is already known that the poison’s peptide has antibacterial properties. According to Guido, the peptide can be manipulated and synthesized in the laboratory. What does that mean? Scientists don’t have to walk behind venomous snakes and can produce the poison in laboratories.
However, that doesn’t mean you should use the poison yourself. In fact, the poison itself doesn’t do anything against Covid-19, one of its molecules does the job.
The next step for scientists is to evaluate the performance of different doses of the Covid-killing molecule.
The aim is to see if the molecule can even prevent the virus from entering human cells, which would essentially mean that toxic molecule does not act as a treatment after infection, but can also be used to prevent infection.
Will scientists test the substance on human cells? The answer is yes, but there is still no clear timetable.
Brazil is notorious for its multitude of dangerous snakes – the jararacussu is one of them, which can grow up to 2 meters long. It is one of the largest snakes in South America.
What do you think of this scary but effective treatment for preventing Covid-19? For more stories about unconventional treatments that are successful, visit Indiatimes.com.
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