It acts to relieve pain without side effects.
Poisonous insects - it is much more than just a scary four-legged creatures. They can be very useful in the world of drugs as he had demonstrated by a study from the University of Queensland (UQ) in Australia.
A team of researchers from UQ has found that the molecules of venom of tarantula have chronic pain-relieving properties without any side effects. The study was published in the journal of biological chemistry. Researchers from UQ has developed a new mini-protein from the venom of the tarantula, which potentially can relieve chronic pain. Dr. Kristina schröder from the Institute of molecular biology, UQ has acknowledged that the current use of opioids in the world is in urgent need of alternatives. These opioids are used relatively regularly, such as morphine and morphine-like drugs, fentanyl and oxycodone. "Although opioids are effective for pain relief, they are accompanied by undesirable side effects such as nausea, constipation, risk of addiction, which creates a huge burden for society," said Dr. Schroeder.
"Our research showed that a protein in tarantula venom from the Chinese bird spider, known as Huwentoxin-IV, binds to pain receptors in the body." Schroeder continued, explaining: "Using a three-step approach in our design of drugs, which includes mini-protein, the receptor and its surrounding membrane from poison spider, we've changed this protein, leading to greater potency and specificity for specific pain receptors." "This ensures that the desired number of mini-protein to join the receptor and the cell membrane surrounding the receptor pain." Yet protein is successfully tested on mice. Schroeder believes that "the results could potentially lead to an alternative method of treatment of pain without side effects and to reduce the dependence of many people on opioids for pain relief".