Press Esc to close
Thursday 11 February 2016
News updated at 2:55 AM IST
Weather
Max: 33°C
Min : 19°C
In Bengaluru
Partially cloudy

GM tobacco plant can treat rabies

London, Feb 3, 2013 (PTI):

A genetically altered version of the tobacco plant may provide an inexpensive cure for the deadly rabies virus to patients in developing countries, scientists say.

In a new research reported in the FASEB Journal, scientists produced a monoclonal antibody in transgenic tobacco plants that was shown to neutralise the rabies virus.
The new antibody works by preventing the virus from attaching to nerve endings around the bite site and keeps the virus from travelling to the brain.

“Rabies continues to kill many thousands of people throughout the developing world every year and can also affect international travellers,” said Leonard Both, a researcher involved in the work from the Hotung Molecular Immunology Unit at St George’s, University of London, in the UK.

“An untreated rabies infection is nearly 100 per cent fatal and is usually seen as a death sentence. Producing an inexpensive antibody in transgenic plants opens the prospect of adequate rabies prevention for low-income families in developing countries,” Both said in a statement.

Both and colleagues “humanised” the sequences for the antibody so people could tolerate it. Then, the antibody was produced using transgenic tobacco plants as an inexpensive production platform.

The antibody was purified from the plant leaves and characterised with regards to its protein and sugar composition.

The antibody was also shown to be active in neutralising a broad panel of rabies viruses, and the exact antibody docking site on the viral envelope was identified using certain chimeric rabies viruses.

“Although treatable by antibodies if caught in time, rabies is bad news,” said Gerald Weissmann, Editor-in-Chief of the FASEB Journal.

“This is especially true for people in the developing world where manufacturing costs lead to treatment shortages. Being able to grow safe, humanised antibodies in genetically modified tobacco should reduce costs to make treatments more accessible, and save more lives,” Weissmann said.


Go to Top

Photo Gallery
Sahana Kumari of India jumps in her final attempt of the High Jump event...

Sahana Kumari of India jumps in her final attempt of the High Jump event...

Divij Sharan and Ankita Raina show their medal at the medal presentation ceremony

Divij Sharan and Ankita Raina show their medal at the medal presentation ceremony

Apurvi Chandela, Pooja Ghatkar, Elizabeth Susan taking selfie during the presentation ceremony...

Apurvi Chandela, Pooja Ghatkar, Elizabeth Susan taking selfie during the presentation ceremony...

Indian Women and Mens Squash team posing for photograph with their Gold medals...

Indian Women and Mens Squash team posing for photograph with their Gold medals...

Veerdhawal Khade during the presentation ceremony for the 50m b fly swimming event...

Veerdhawal Khade during the presentation ceremony for the 50m b fly swimming event...

Flowers in full bloom during the press preview at the Mughal Garden ...

Flowers in full bloom during the press preview at the Mughal Garden ...

Jawans pay tribute at the memorial of the Sikh warrior General Sardar Sham Singh Attari ...

Jawans pay tribute at the memorial of the Sikh warrior General Sardar Sham Singh Attari ...

Concluding Session of Governors Conference in New Delhi...

Concluding Session of Governors Conference in New Delhi...

Else Sandberg, wife of the ambassador of Sweden to India launch the Zbee Electric vehicle ...

Else Sandberg, wife of the ambassador of Sweden to India launch the Zbee Electric vehicle ...

An Installation of the ' Make in India' logo at CST near BMC headquarters in Mumbai...

An Installation of the ' Make in India' logo at CST near BMC headquarters in Mumbai...

Copyright 2014, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd., 75, M.G Road, Post Box 5331, Bengaluru - 560001
Tel: +91 (80) 25880000 Fax No. +91 (80) 25880523