Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Decoding the pharmacological goldmine in tick saliva.

A new study led by Radcliffe Department of Medicine, Professor Shoumo Bhattacharya, has decoded the structure of unique proteins found in tick saliva and created new ones not found in nature, paving the way for a new generation of ‘Swiss-army knife’ anti-inflammatory drugs, with customised extensions to block different inflammatory pathways.  

Previous research by Professor Shoumo Bhattacharya underlines that tick saliva can be a pharmacological gold mine, potentially yielding many new drugs which could treat disorders ranging from cardiovascular diseases and stroke to arthritis. This previous work identified a group of tick saliva proteins called evasins, which bind to and neutralise chemokines, a group of chemicals key to causing inflammation in the body.

Now the researchers have worked out the structural trick that enables tick evasins to block a complex pathway that has multiple routes to the same response. What’s more, they can now manipulate this structure to make new, custom-made proteins based on tick evasins.

Read more (Radcliffe Department of Medicine website)

Similar stories

Richard Tyser and Jack Miller honoured by the British Society of Cardiovascular Research

Dr Richard Tyser is this year’s winner of the Bernard and Joan Marshall Early Career Investigator Prize, and Dr Jack Miller has received a runner-up award, at the British Society of Cardiovascular Research Autumn Meeting.

Xin Sun shortlisted in national science image competition

DPAG Postdoctoral Research Scientist Dr Xin Sun has been shortlisted in the British Heart Foundation’s (BHF) annual ‘Reflections of Research’ image competition.

Reducing fat in the diabetic heart could improve recovery from heart attack

New research from the Heather Group has shown that in type 2 diabetes an overload of lipids reduces the heart’s ability to generate energy during a heart attack, decreasing chances of recovery.

Critical six-week window to ‘reset’ blood pressure after giving birth

Home blood pressure monitors could help mothers significantly lower high blood pressure after pregnancy