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Protein Found in Sea Coral May Protect Against HIV

Australian Sea Coral Extracts Could Tackle HIV

A team of researchers at the Molecular Targets Laboratory at the National Cancer Institute’s Center for Cancer Research are now discovering a class of proteins that could be a solution to stopping HIV viruses from entering T-cells, and may be applied in the form of a cream or a lotion, and this protein could actually be extracted off sea corals found off Australia’s coastline.

“It’s always thrilling when you find a brand-new protein that nobody else has ever seen before,” senior investigator Barry O’Keefe, Ph.D., deputy chief of the laboratory, explained. “And the fact that this protein appears to block HIV infection-and to do it in a completely new way-makes this truly exciting.”

After screening thousands of extracts, the researchers finally found the protein, which is known as cnidarins, and may be the next best thing when it comes to tackling HIV.

While years of research has already succeeded dropping the levels of those affected by HIV, it is still a threat to those who have unprotected sex.

This new sea coral protein may be an invaluable solution to HIV, as it doesn’t impact other treatment option. “When developing new drugs, we’re always concerned about the possibility of undermining existing successful treatments by encouraging drug resistance in the virus,” O’Keefe added. “But even if the virus became resistant to these proteins, it would likely still be sensitive to all of the therapeutic options that are currently available.”

“Making more of it is a big key,” O’Keefe confirmed. “You can’t strip the Earth of this coral trying to harvest this protein, so our focus now is on finding ways to produce more of it so we can proceed with preclinical testing.”

Australian Sea Coral Extracts Could Tackle HIV

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Enozia Vakil is an online entrepreneur, writer, editor and an avid reader. She has been associated with some of the best names in both online and print media, and holds a degree in Alternative Medicine.