First of all, scientists are making our lives easier. None of them are stopping from their works, instead, they are researching more. This article is about creating snake venom in the lab.
Creating Snake Venom In The Lab
A team of scientists in the Netherlands has succeeded in growing mimics of snake venom-producing glands from multiple species of snakes. The team is led by stem cell biologists Hans Clevers of the Hubrecht Institute in Utrecht, the Netherlands. They are closer to creating snake venom in the lab.
According to the report from the World Health Organization (WHO), around 2.7 million people are believed to bitten by venomous snake each year. Roughly, between 81,000 to 138,000 people die of the bites, and around 400,000 might have faced disabilities.
These incidents can be decreased if scientists can extract snake venom from the lab-grown glands. These venoms are used to make various drugs, antidotes, etc.
Antivenoms are made from the snakes’ venom that is usually raised in the farms. Commonly, these venoms are injected into other animals that make antibodies to the toxins. A bitten person can be recovered by using the purified versions of these venoms.
Besides, the team started their analysis with Cape Coral snake that was dissected from eggs just before hatching. Clevers says at the meeting, “Stem cells taken from the unhatched snakes grew into several different types of organoids. These include some that make venom closely resembling the snake’s normal venom.”
Finally, they have successfully produced venom-gland organoids from at least seven species of snakes. And luckily the organoids have survived in the lab for up to two years so far. His team has the expectation of harvesting venom from organoids, which produce more highly concentrated venom than snakes usually makes.