Friday, November 2, 2012

Brazil: Rattlesnake Venom Protein Has Success Against Melanoma Cells in Rats

According to EFE, Brazilian researchers have concluded that a protein extracted from rattlesnake venom could raise survival hopes among patients with skin cancer [melanoma].

Chromatin, a protein isolated from the venom,  increased the survival rate of rats with skin cancer by up to 70%, the Butantan Institute reported yesterday (November 1).  The protein also helped to significantly retard the development of tumors and even to completely inhibit their formation, according to Butantan, an institute linked to the health department of São Paulo state.

COMMENT: The researchers heading the unprecedented study discovered that the protein is able to kill cells, but its toxic action is exclusively limited to melanoma cells, meaning that it does not affect an organism’s other cells. The substance also remains inside a cancerous tumor for only about 24 hours.