natural immunity to snakebites

SNAKEBITE ANTIVENOM SOURCE FOUND IN OPOSSUMS

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo by Cody Pope, Wikipedia creative commons license

April 5, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) – Opossums aren’t typically thought of as a powerhouse in the animal kingdom.  The term “playing possum” after all refers to one way opossums react to predators –by playing dead.  But it turns out that opossums have a peptide that gives them a natural immunity to snakebites and other toxins – and now scientists are working to harness it to create anti-venoms.


Error message

Local news in the public interest is more important now than ever, during the COVID-19 crisis. Our reporters, as essential workers, are dedicated to keeping you informed, even though we’ve had to cancel fundraising events. Please give the gift of community journalism by donating at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate.