Mushrooms and fungi continue to claim lives, even though they are not to blame. Fortunately, we already have an antidote for the gutter, but there is a problem.
It has many different names: mushroom of death (Death Cap), paprika, gutter, paprika, green hemlockand some more. The Amanita phalloides It is the most poisonous mushroom in the world, the cause of most deaths from mushroom ingestion worldwide. Thanks to CRISPR, we have the antidote.
It’s not that the ditch It has a more potent poison than other poisonous mushrooms, but it has two characteristics that make it the most dangerous.
First of all, looks a lot like other mushrooms that are edibleand that causes many reckless people to eat them, thinking they are good.
But the most disturbing thing is his way of poisoning, since it does it slowly. In the first hours, it causes stomach pain, vomiting and diarrhea, which is why it is mistaken for food poisoning.
These symptoms last for a few days, until the liver and kidneys begin to fail. At that point it is already deadly unless an emergency organ transplant is performed.
CRISPR finds the antidote
As he explains New atlasScientists at Sun Yat-sen University in China have discovered this the first antidote to the poison of the death mushroom. And the most interesting thing is how did they get it.
You’ve probably heard of CRISPR, a revolutionary technology that makes it possible DNA fragments “cut and paste”., almost like when we cut and paste one photo into another, on the computer or mobile. You have more information about this card:
Using CRISPR, these scientists created human cells with different mutationsand infected them with the poison of the Amanita phalloides.
So how did they find out? cell cultures without the STT3B gene were immune to the poison.
In other words, the STT3B gene helps the venom infect the liver and kidneys.
The next step was find a substance that blocks this gene in cells, which would prevent the poison from working. They analyzed thousands of compounds and found one that blocks this gene: indocyanine green (ICG), a dye used in medical imaging.
It has been used as dead mold antidote in human cells and mice, and 50% survived the poisoncompared to only 10% if you don’t take anything.
It’s not the perfect antidote, but this is because it is essential to take it as soon as possible. According to research, you should take to be most effective during the first four hours after poisoning.
This is the big problem with this green pepper antidote or gutter made with CRISPR since, as we explained, the deadly symptoms begin to appear after a few days. But it’s better than nothing. And more important, this technique can be used to find new antidotes for other kinds of toxins.