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Scientists discovered that Llamas may be the key to defeat COVID-19

Scientists may have just found a breakthrough to ward off Covid-19 and that breakthrough came in a form of a llama.

Scientists from the VIB-UGent Center for Medical Biotechnology in Belgium recently discovered that antibodies extracted from a llama named Winter managed to successfully neutralise the virus and also its stubborn variants in their lab testings.

According to a report by Reuters, the antibodies from llama worked because it’s much smaller in size compared to the a human’s antibodies, making it easier to merge with specific parts of the coronavirus’ spike protein to prevent infections.

“Their small size allows them to reach targets, reach parts of the virus that are difficult to access with conventional antibodies,” research team leader Xavier Salaens told the news agency.

The antibodies also reportedly showed “strong neutralisation activity” against the highly-infectious Delta variant.

Salaens added that the animal’s antibody is more stable and easier to reproduce compared to those from other mammals.

The report also said that clinical trials using llama antibodies have already begun, and that the research team is optimistic about strong results in both healthy and hospitalised patients.

If you’ve been wondering why the scientists would randomly take a llama’s antibodies to see if it works on COVID-19, that’s because it’s been proven effective before.

Prior to this, llama antibodies were successfully used to combat infections from other viruses including SARS and MERS, so researchers were doing their due diligence to see if it works on COVID-19 as well.

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