London: British scientists found that the antibodies of llamas can be effective in neutralising a series of viruses, including HIV, the PLOS Pathogens magazine reported.
The llama is a domestic artiodactyl mammal of the camelidae family, abundant in Puna or the Andes high plains of Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador and Peru.
According to Plos Pathogens, researchers of the University College of London resorted to the antibodies of those animals because they have only one gene, unlike human beings and most fauna, whose antibodies have two genes and therefore need to be matched.
Another advantage of the llama’s antibodies is that they are smaller and linked to the virus smoothly, so the scientists estimate this to be a significant breakthrough in the development of contemporary medicine.
They have identified four virus-neutralising antibodies in the llamas that target virus infected areas and join the cells, helping the body to fight the illness.
This find represents a new stage in the development of vaccines against the virus, as so far no other antibody has managed to do something like this.
According to experts, the most important is the prospect to have a detailed description of the virus, which was previously deemed impossible to achieve.
The researchers admit that many aspects are yet to be established, but this find is important, as it might be applied to humans in the future.