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The Magical Snake Venom That Cures Covid-19

Researchers in Brazil may just have discovered the stepping stone to finding the oddest treatment for Covid-19 after venom from a snake species was able to fight the virus effectively.

A molecule present in the venom of jararacussu pit viper was able to prevent coronavirus’ ability to multiply and intensify in monkey cells by a whopping 75 per cent. This means that scientists could whip up an anti-Covid drug using snake venom very soon!

The study was published in the journal Molecules, where one of the study’s authors from the University of Sao Paulo said that the snake venom was able to kill a very important protein which causes the virus.

We were able to show this component of snake venom was able to inhibit a very important protein from the virus,” Reuters quoted Rafael Guido as saying.

Brazilian scientists use snake venom to kill COVID-19Reuters

What is this snake venom molecule? The molecule is composed of a chain of amino acids (called a peptide). This chain is able to connect to the coronavirus’ enzyme called PLPro.

This enzyme is primarily responsible for reproducing the virus. The peptide inhibited the enzyme without causing harm to other cells, shedding light on its scientific properties.

The venom’s peptide is already known to possess antibacterial qualities. According to Guido, the peptide can be manipulated and synthesised in laboratory settings. What does this mean? Scientists won’t have to run behind venomous snakes and can produce the venom in labs.

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What’s next for Covid-killing snake venom?

But this doesn’t mean you should use the venom yourself. In fact, the venom itself does nothing to fight Covid-19, one of its molecules does the job. The next step for scientists is evaluating how different doses of the Covid-killing molecule performs.

The goal is to assess whether the molecule can prevent the virus from entering human cells in the first place, which would essentially mean that the venomous molecule would not work as a post-infection treatment but can also be used to prevent infection.

Will scientists test the substance on human cells? The answer is yes, but there is no clear timeline yet. Brazil is notoriously famous for its variety of dangerous snakes – the jararacussu being one of them, measuring upto 2 metres (6 feet) long. It is one of the largest snakes in South America.

What do you think about this uncanny but effective treatment to prevent Covid-19? Source: Indiatimes

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