Insulin developed from sea snails
Insulin developed from the venom of a predatory sea snail could create more effective and safer diabetes treatment, according to an international group of researchers.
The venom of cone snails contains a unique form of insulin which works much faster than human insulin.
To introduce this fast-acting quality to human insulin the group identified key amino acids for the function of snail insulin and integrated modified versions of them into an adapted human insulin molecule.
When tested in rats, this hybrid insulin molecule had the same potency as human insulin while acting faster.