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Vampire bats could hold the key to new treatments for a range of serious medical problems, but researchers have hit a snag accessing the specimens needed to advance their work.
An international team led by The University of Queensland has found a new class of blood pressure-regulating peptides in the venom of the common vampire bat (Diphylla ecaudata).
UQ - School - Biological - Sciences - Researcher
UQ School of Biological Sciences researcher Associate Professor Bryan Fry said the peptides could help revolutionise treatments for a wide range of conditions, including hypertension, heart failure, kidney diseases and burns, but the research had been hampered by criminal activity at a Mexican field site.
"The peptides are mutated forms of the Calcitonin Gene Related Peptide (CGRP), used by our bodies to relax blood vessels," he said.
Peptides - Bats - Mode - Action - CGRP
"The peptides from the bats are unusually selective in their mode of action, making them even more therapeutically useful than the CGRP, as they have fewer side-effects.
"This could potentially help doctors in the treatment of a range of disorders featuring heightened pressure in small blood vessels, or may be able to improve blood flow to damaged or transplanted tissue such...
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