According to research by Australian scientists, one of the world’s deadliest spiders could have the ability to save the lives of people who’ve had heart attacks. This hopeful research was published in the scientific journal Circulation.
A venom can take someone’s life within hours, but it can also save your life.
It is a miracle that how this poisonous insect saves your lives?
Australian scientists have found a method to prevent damage caused by heart attacks by developing a drug candidate from a molecule in the venom of the Fraser Island funnel-web spider.
This awesome work was done by a team led by Dr. Nathan Palpant and Professor Glenn King from The University of Queensland and Professor Peter Macdonald from Sydney’s Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute.
Dr. Palpant said that the drug candidate, a protein called Hi1a, worked by stopping a ‘death signal’ sent from the heart after an attack when blood flow to the organ is reduced.
He said that “The lack of oxygen causes the cell environment to become acidic, which combine to send a message for heart cells to die.”
Heart disease continues to be a leading cause of death globally because no one has developed a drug that stops this death signal.
Another word of Dr. Palpant is, “The Hi1a protein from spider venom blocks acid-sensing ion channels in the heart, so the death message is blocked, cell death is reduced, and we see improved heart cell survival.”
Professor Macdonald said that the discovery generates another benefit apart from heart diseases. Actually, it could not only help heart attack survivors. It expands the number and improves donor hearts’ quality, giving hope to those waiting on the transplant list.
He said that “Usually if the donor’s heart has stopped beating for more than 30 minutes before retrieval, the heart can’t be used,”
“Even if we can buy an extra 10 minutes, that could make the difference between someone having a heart and someone missing out.”
Professor King, an earlier builder of this work, has identified a small protein in the spider’s venom that markedly improves recovery from stroke.
The team aims for human clinical trials for both stroke and heart disease within two to three years, and the protein has been tested in human heart cells.
The thing is that there are currently no drugs in clinical use that prevent the damage caused by heart attacks. However, everyone’s wish is a clinically proven medicine for these horrible heart attacks. Hope medical science will have to succeed one day.