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The shark will help fight corona, identification of 3 special types of VNAR proteins

Shark fish can be helpful in fighting covid. Scientists have discovered that proteins such as antibodies present in the shark’s immune system can inhibit the virus that causes Covid.

These proteins, called VNARs, are much smaller in size than human antibodies. They are so tiny that they can penetrate even places human antibodies cannot reach. Professor Aaron LeBeau and his team from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the US have identified three specific VNARs.

LeBeau has said that we are developing a therapy method from shark’s VNAR proteins, which will help prevent outbreaks like Covid in the future.

The pandemic caused by the coronavirus in the world has not subsided and now variants such as Omicron are spreading rapidly. The risk of reinfection with Omicron is five times higher. The researchers tested shark VNAR against the coronavirus and a fake virus.

Viruses could not expand in cells. With this test, they were able to identify three VNAR proteins, which can be used in the treatment of Covid. The VNAR protein, 3B4, blocked the binding of the virus’s spike protein to human cells. This tight slot of the spike protein is genetically identical in different coronaviruses.

The researchers reported that the 3B4 protein was also successful in neutralizing the Mers virus, a distant relative of the coronavirus.

He said that the ability of the 3B4 protein to bind to specific sites of diverse coronaviruses makes it an effective weapon against infectious viruses. There was no change in the binding site of the 3B4 protein even in the different variants of the delta-like corona.

However, LeBeau’s team had completed their research before Omicron appeared. LeBeau says that this VNAR will be effective in dealing with the new variant.


Scientists think that the shark’s cocktail of different VNAR proteins could increase their efficiency against a variety of viruses and their mutating incarnations.

LeBeau is also studying the utility of shark VNAR proteins in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer. Scientists have been eyeing the use of sharks in the treatment of Covid for a long time. The oil present in shark liver called squalene has been used in some anti-corona vaccines.

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