Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

'Magic Potion' In Fly Spit May Shoo Away Blinding Eye Disease

Date:
April 13, 2009
Source:
American Chemical Society
Summary:
Researchers are reporting the first identification of a "magic potion" of proteins in the saliva of the black fly that help this blood-sucking pest spread parasites that cause "river blindness," a devastating eye-disease.

Scientists have found proteins in the black fly’s saliva that help spread parasites that cause a devastating eye disease.
Credit: US Department of Agriculture, The Diptera Site

Researchers are reporting the first identification of a "magic potion" of proteins in the saliva of the black fly that help this blood-sucking pest spread parasites that cause "river blindness," a devastating eye-disease.

A better understanding of these proteins may lead to better drugs and a vaccine for river blindness and other diseases spread by biting insects. Also known as onchocerciasis, river blindness affects more than 17 million people worldwide, particularly in rural Africa. 

In the new study, José M.C. Ribeiro and colleagues explain that the saliva of adult female black flies contains substances that mute the human body's natural defenses. This chemical cocktail makes the body more vulnerable to disease when infected flies bite into the skin. Until now, however, nobody had identified the specific chemicals involved in this devious action.

The scientists collected salivary glands from hundreds of adult female black flies and isolated the proteins using high-tech analytical gear. They identified 72 different proteins, including several new to science. These proteins could serve as the basis for developing drugs or vaccines against diseases transmitted by the black fly and other blood-sucking insects, including mosquitoes, midges, and sand flies, the researchers say.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Chemical Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Andersen et al. Insight into the Sialome of the Black Fly, Simulium vittatum. Journal of Proteome Research, 2009; 8 (3): 1474 DOI: 10.1021/pr8008429

Cite This Page:

American Chemical Society. "'Magic Potion' In Fly Spit May Shoo Away Blinding Eye Disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 April 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090406101921.htm>.
American Chemical Society. (2009, April 13). 'Magic Potion' In Fly Spit May Shoo Away Blinding Eye Disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090406101921.htm
American Chemical Society. "'Magic Potion' In Fly Spit May Shoo Away Blinding Eye Disease." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090406101921.htm (accessed August 22, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Friday, August 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Drug Used To Treat 'Ebola's Cousin' Shows Promise

Drug Used To Treat 'Ebola's Cousin' Shows Promise

Newsy (Aug. 21, 2014) — An experimental drug used to treat Marburg virus in rhesus monkeys could give new insight into a similar treatment for Ebola. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Terrifying City-Dwelling Spiders Are Bigger And More Fertile

Terrifying City-Dwelling Spiders Are Bigger And More Fertile

Newsy (Aug. 21, 2014) — According to a new study, spiders that live in cities are bigger, fatter and multiply faster. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Lost Brain Cells To Blame For Sleep Problems Among Seniors

Lost Brain Cells To Blame For Sleep Problems Among Seniors

Newsy (Aug. 21, 2014) — According to a new study, elderly people might have trouble sleeping because of the loss of a certain group of neurons in the brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ramen Health Risks: The Dark Side of the Noodle

Ramen Health Risks: The Dark Side of the Noodle

AP (Aug. 21, 2014) — South Koreans eat more instant ramen noodles per capita than anywhere else in the world. But American researchers say eating too much may increase the risk of diabetes, heart disease and stroke. (Aug. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins