Who would have thought behind its terrible name, the Tasmanian devil species (Sarcophilus harrisii) able to produce something of value to humans. Scientists say, that the milk of the carnivorous marsurpial species contains powerful compounds that are useful to eradicate the most resistant bacteria and fungi.
|A Tasmanian devil seen snarling. (Picture from: http://adf.ly/1f6IV7)|
Emma Peel, a researcher at the University of Sydney, Australia revealed that the Tasmanian devil's milk contains six types of antifungal compounds and bacteria, while human milk is only one. The study has been published in Scientific Reports.
A test revealed that the compound of the milk of the Tasmanian devil could overcome the deadly golden staph bacteria (Staphylococcus aureus). This bacteria causes food poisoning and pneumonia. And the compound components are also able to kill Candida krusei, a rare deadly yeast species.
"It's really exciting, we found that the peptide of Tasmanian devil is able to kill bacteria that are resistant to the drug," said Peel was quoted as saying of Science Alert on Tuesday, October 18, 2016.
Tasmanian devils are an endangered species found only in Tasmania, Australia. Currently the endangered Tasmanian devils, one reason is the Devil facial tumour disease (DFTD) that attack the species. The disease is contagious and can be wiped out more than 70 percent of species.
Astonishingly, the Tasmanian devils could survive despite the danger of the disease for two decades. In fact, at the birth of Tasmanian devils babies not have the primary immune tissue and can not develop antibodies until 90 days of ages. The Tasmanian devil babies could be survive even should to live in their parent bag filled with bacteria.
Researchers guessed, the antimicrobial peptide found in the mother's milk is the key to survival of the Tasmanian devil babies are. In fact the presumption was true. Once the researchers scanned the genomes of Tasmania and analyzing the molecular structure of milk, they found a compound that is six times more effective against fungal infections and anti-fungal.
Researchers are now testing whether the peptide is found safe for use by humans. Two peptides are effective against harmful bacteria, ie the Saha CATH5 and Saha CATH6. "These peptides have the potential to be developed as an antibiotic. Including further investigate whether it is possible also be used as anti-cancer," said Peel. *** [EKA | FROM VARIOUS SOURCES | SCIENCE ALERT | LIVESCIENCE]
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