A 4-year-old llama may hold the key ingredient to neutralizing the coronavirus. Here’s why llama antibodies are so good at fighting diseases.
- Researchers from the US and Belgium think a four-year-old llama named Winter may hold a key ingredient for antibody research that could help fight the novel coronavirus.
- They found that Winter produces special antibodies that allows her to stave off infections against SARS and MERS — and very preliminary results suggest the antibodies could be used to successfully fight COVID-19.
- But this isn’t the first time llamas have been used for antibody research. They’ve also provided promising treatment candidates for HIV and influenza.
- While humans can only produce large antibodies to fight off diseases, llamas can also produce tiny ones called nanobodies, which could better target viruses because of their size.
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Llamas aren’t just the adorable, goofy creatures we know and love them to be. The furry animals could also be important players in antibody research, and may prove to be “heroes” in the fight against COVID-19.
Winter, a chocolate-brown llama with enviably long eyelashes, holds a key antibody that researchers hope could neutralize the coronavirus.
She and 130 other llamas are located on a research farm in Belgium, where they have been used for antibody research against SARS …continued .
[Source: Business Insider]