Spider venom can prevent damage to the brain that is associated with stroke


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Spider venom can prevent damage to the brain that is associated with stroke

According to the latest study conducted by researchers from the Institute of Molecular Biology at the University of Queensland in Australia, a peptide derived from the venom of the spider can be the key to the prevention of brain damage caused by stroke. Scientists believe that the peptide Hi1a – found in the venom of the Australian funnel web spider, can affect the ion channels in the brain, which in turn can play a crucial role in the prevention of damage, which entails the occurrence of disease.

Professor Glenn King of the Institute of Molecular Biology at the University of Queensland, Australia, and his colleagues use in their research the chemistry of arthropod predators such as spiders, scorpions, and keels. Since the stroke is the second leading cause of death around the world, and at the same time provide extremely a considerable incidence of disability and the inability of many patients experiencing it, scientists are looking for ways to avoid the side effects caused by this incredibly complicated health problem.

The venom of a spider is a rich source of stable, natural peptides that strongly modulate the activity of ion channels and receptors of nerve. Hence the research conducted by scientists from the Institute of Molecular Biology of the University of Queensland in Australia, tend to use them as a way to prevent damage in the brain that occur as a result of a stroke.

According to statistics, an average of 795,000 people a year in the United States are affected by stroke, and 610,000 are cases of stroke for the first time in their lives. Therefore, a stroke is a highly common problem. This disease is also a leading cause of various kinds of dysfunctions and disabilities in the world, and as a result, more than half of those that survive a stroke at the age of 65 or older, experiences constraints mobility.

The most common side effect associated with stroke is paralysis or impairment of a function of one side of the body, but there are also other problems that are associated with changes in the brain and human behavior. So far, scientists not found an effective medication that will help in the brain damages caused by stroke, which is why Professor King and his colleagues claim that discovered by them peptide Hi1a, can be a very likely the perfect solution to this problem.

Hi1a peptide derived from the venom of the Australian funnel web spider effectively protects the brains of rats from damage caused by stroke.

Hi1a works by blocking the activity of the acid channel 1a or ASIC1a in the brain. This ion channel is the primary contributor to stroke damage after ischemic stroke – the most common type of stroke. The ischemic stroke is associated with blockage of the blood supply to the brain, and its result is that oxygen cannot reach it.


In a study carried out by researchers from the Institute of Molecular Biology at the University of Queensland in Australia, a small dose of the Hi1 peptide (or exactly two nanograms per kilogram of body weight) was administered to rats within 8 hours after a stroke. The research team discovered then that the venom of the spider has a protective effect on brain tissue, including all neurological and motor functions.

The peptide Hi1a also provides protection for the core regions of the brain, which is the point of the brain, that is most affected due to oxygen depletion. Severe hypoxia core of the brain is associated with the occurrence of disease, and the principle causes irreversible side effects, because at the time its cells very quickly die, making stroke is related to high mortality.

Researchers at the Institute of Molecular Biology at the University of Queensland in Australia, however, are convinced that their discovery could lead to new strategies for developing a drug that could be of great importance in the treatment of stroke. Its appearance can a significantly improve the quality of life of patients affected by this unpleasant health problem.

As it seems, that this discovery is a real chance to find an effective way to minimize the effects of brain damage after this serious health problem. It may be, therefore, a real opportunity to reduce damage to the brain (or even complete prevention) and to decrease the risk of disability among people who have been affected by these devastating harm.

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