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Wednesday, September 23, 2020
Thursday, August 13, 2020

Brazilian researchers discover antibodies  against Covid-19 in horses

Brasilia, Aug 13 .- Brazilian scientists will announce today in a session of the National Academy of Medicine a new discovery about antibodies in horses that generate a powerful response that neutralizes Covid-19.

The G1 news portal indicates that in the research several animals received the Spike protein of SARS-CoV-2, responsible for the infection of human cells, and developed a more powerful antibody (20 to 50 times) against the pathogen. 

According to the site, Jerson Lima Silva, researcher at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro and president of the Carlos Chagas Filho de Amparo Research Foundation, and Adilson Stolet, doctor and president of the Instituto Vital Brasil (IVB), presented the request for technology patent.

" Everything has been developed here in Brazil and it is important to do this intellectual protection , " Lima Silva told G1.

He announced that the next step will be the approval of clinical studies, human tests, to verify the safety of a serological treatment against Covid-19.

He pointed out that he is in contact with the National Health Surveillance Agency and that the 50 times higher potency of the antibodies is a conservative number.  “ We found antibodies up to 100 times more potent in experiments. We follow five horses weekly and four of them had a response even higher than 50 ” , he reiterated.

 G1 specifies that the coronavirus has a corona-shaped protein (Spike) and that is how the virus binds to the receptors of human cells to multiply.  The Alberto Luiz Coimbra Institute for Graduate Engineering and Research produced an albumin equal to the SARS CoV-2 and participated in the research.  IVB technicians inoculated only the protein in the horses, which generates an immune response and does not allow the virus to infect the animals.  The blood was taken from the horses and purified to isolate only the antibodies, in a product ready for human serotherapy.  This type of serological therapy has been used for decades in diseases such as rabies, tetanus, and bee and snake stings.

 For Silva, it is necessary to answer what is the best phase of the coronavirus infection and the application of antibodies to neutralize it in humans, but - he thinks - it will be in moderate and hospitalized patients.

 Brazil ranks as the second country in the world most affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, behind the United States, and has registered 104,1201 deaths to date and 3,164,785 infections of the disease. (Text and photo: PL)