Saturday, February 25, 2017

Science's secret weapon against antibiotic resistance could be dragon's blood

Antibiotic resistance has fast become one of the biggest threats facing global public health.

Antibiotics are used to treat infections that could otherwise become life-threatening – and our bodies our building up a resistance to them.

Around 480,000 people develop multi-drug resistance every year, according to the World Health Organisation, and the resistance is starting to complicate treatment for HIV and malaria. 

However, a team of researchers from George Mason University think that could all be solved by dragon blood - unless their study has been accidentally replaced with the script for the next big sci-fi hit film. 

They examined the blood of komodo dragons, and found that they have a number of antimicrobial peptides that could help create new drugs to combat antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

The dragons have great immune systems, and the researchers say this could help humans.

They have deadly bacteria in their saliva that they’re resistant to, and they recover from wounds such as these particularly quickly– which are rife in their natural environments - according to the study.

The researchers say that the dragon’s blood plasma contains many viable antimicrobial peptides that could help develop new drugs.

From dragons. That's AWESOME.

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