California Scientists Develop COVID-19 Protective Nasal Spray
While the world waits for a coronavirus vaccine, scientists at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) say they have developed molecules that could help fight the virus. These synthetic antibodies, called AeroNab, can be administered as a nasal spray to protect people from the coronavirus, they said. ABC7.
Although this is an unconventional vaccine, they believe that using the spray once a day can protect you from the virus. And if you've never come across AeroNab, don't worry. You may soon breathe it in.
"It's so stable that we can place it in a small nebulizer," said Dr. Aashish Manglik of UCSF.
Manglik says aerosol agents known as AeroNabs were developed from a tiny molecule first discovered in camels and similar animals called nanobody. They are smaller than human antibodies and can be manipulated to perform specific tasks. These nanobodies attach to the protein spikes of the coronavirus.
“This is a really effective mousetrap. It binds to one of these spike proteins and won't release it anymore, ”he explained.
The UCSF team studied roughly two billion synthetic nanobodies before finding the best candidate for development. The nanobody has been upgraded to make it even more powerful. Knowing that the COVID virus uses its spines to attach itself to a specific part of the lung cell called the Ace2 receptor, scientists have worked to stop the invasion. When AeroNab binds to a protein spike, the virus cannot attach to the receptor and loses its ability to infect cells.
The main task remains: to find out how best to send nanobodies into the body. The UCSF team says the AeroNabs are stable enough to turn them into an effective aerosol.
As the developer clarifies in an interview for Yahoo News, the drug was dried in a special way and turned into powder, from which it was further turned into a spray.
It is a potent drug that patients can potentially inhale to protect themselves from infection.
"The ability of the AeroNab to travel to the respiratory tract and directly attack the virus gives it such incredible strength," explains team member Peter Walter.
The UCSF team is currently in talks with potential partners to increase production for clinical trials. If successful, they envision that AeroNab will be used as a kind of flu vaccine to keep patients from getting infected, or potentially even treat the infection early.
According to the developers, such a spray may be more effective than maintaining social distance and personal protective equipment. relevant even with a vaccine. It will not lose its relevance even when a vaccine appears.
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