Humankind is on the verge of escaping yet another natural calamity thanks to science. Carbon monoxide poisoning has made too many victims by infecting their central nervous system and heart which can ultimately lead to death. The poison is more deadly as it travels by air and doesn’t need to be injected into system. The new potential antidote can track down the gas from blood and remove it in just a matter of minutes.
Even though the research is young, it sparks new hope for all people around the globe. Carbon monoxide is also called the silent killer as nobody can see or smell this gas. This makes it next to impossible to protect against this type of poison. What makes things worse is that these gas fumes are developing especially in the urban environment. Any car exhaust or unregulated furnace can create this biological weapon. Its colorless, tasteless, and odorless nature together with the fact that it doesn’t cause initial signs of irritation make it an invisible enemy.
Carbon monoxide poisoning works by eliminating the oxygen our body needs to survive. The red blood cells remain without oxygen, the process making our brain and other tissues starve. The only existent treatment is not dealing with the cause. It can only heal the effects of poison by pumping oxygen in time.
Carbon monoxide is, in fact, the most common poison in the modern age. However, while there are antidotes for cyanide poisoning or snake venom, we still have to struggle with many cases of carbon monoxide inhalations.
Doctor Mark Gladwin of the University of Pittsburgh is the leader of this new research. His team found a protein that resembles the structure of hemoglobin. This is called neuroglobin, and it develops in the brain. The team of researchers is altering it to teach it how to combat carbon monoxide gas. This is an artificial molecule that can attach to a hemoglobin 500 times better than gas can.
It will take a long while before researchers can proceed to test the new cure on people. However, lab tests are satisfactory so far. The carbon monoxide poisoning may be curable in a few years. Until then, scientists advise us to install alarms that are activated in the presence of this gas.
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