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Scientists find antibodies in llamas that can neutralize novel coronavirus

Garsha Sai Nitesh
Garsha Sai Nitesh

Scientists proved that the South American mammal llamas, two small, stable antibody variants can neutralize that novel coronavirus in the lab which is a development of new therapeutics against COVID-19, according to a study published in the journal Nature Structural & Molecular Biology.

The study noted that ‘nanobodies’ can successfully prevent the infection from the coronavirus by blocking its interaction with the protein ACE2 which uses as a gateway to enter and infect cells.

According to the scientists, including from The Rosalind Franklin Institute in the United Kingdom, immunization by giving a patient virus-neutralizing agent from previously infected people with SARS-CoV-2 or purified antibodies can be used for therapy of COVId-19.

Researchers noted that human antibodies like those of mammals have tow chains know as heavy and light but camelids such as llamas have and additional single heavy chain antibody variant called nanobody.

Nanobody is small, stable, and easily produced often serve as an alternative to conventional antibodies for diagnostics and imagining. These small antibodies are now being developed as a potential fight against the novel coronavirus, the scientists said.

Scientists further said these nanobodies called H11-H4 and H11-D4, particularly target a region of the protein “immediately adjacent to and slightly overlapping with the ACE2 binding region.”

According to the results of the study, both the nanobodies successfully neutralize the live SARS-CoV-2 with H11-H$ showing high potency and addictive neutralization on a human antibody.

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