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GBR Press: Research snake bite advance

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Posted by: W von Papinešu at Mon Jul 4 11:52:27 2011  [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by W von Papinešu ]  
   

NEWSCASTLE HERALD (UK) 27 June 11 Newcastle researchers' snake bite advance (Jacqui Jones)
A Newcastle discovery has the potential to increase the survival chances of snake bite victims through application of ointment commonly used for wound healing and to treat angina.
Researchers from the University of Newcastle, John Hunter Hospital and Calvary Mater Newcastle made the discovery while researching the lymphatic system.
The study by Dirk van Helden, Megan Saul, Paul Thomas, Geoff Isbister, Peter Dosen, Margaret O'Leary and Sally McFadden is published today in the journal Nature Medicine.
It found that applying ointment containing glyceryl trinitrate slowed the transport of snake bite toxin through the lymphatic system into the bloodstream. But the ointment does not inactivate the venom.
Associate Professor van Helden said the ointment would be best used as a first aid measure with a pressure bandage and immobilisation.
The researchers found that applying the ointment could improve snake bite victims' survival times by up to 50 per cent.
In slowing the transport of venom via the circulatory system it could give bite victims more time to seek medical help.
Associate Professor van Helden said the ointment would be a useful addition to first aid kits or bushwalkers' backpacks.
"We really do think it's going to give you a bit longer to survive," he said.
Associate Professor van Helden said snake bites accounted for about 100,000 deaths and 400,000 amputations a year worldwide.
The researchers hope to take the findings further to help develop a pressure pad containing the ointment that snake bite victims could apply to the affected area.
Newcastle researchers' snake bite advance


   

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