October 17, 2014
Behind the Scene: Medicine in the Making
What do you get when you put together independent study and natural science? Do you imagine a mad scientist spending countless hours mixing chemicals in the laboratory? Working independently in a research laboratory this summer, I concluded that the image from your imagination is only partly true! I studied the venom of a specific snake species independently, but I worked together with a group of professors, doctors, research assistants and postgraduate students who are united by common interests. Enhydrina schistosa, or commonly known as the beaked sea snake, is responsible for more than 50% of sea snake bites, with 90% fatality. In this study, the main toxins of E. schistosa are isolated and studied. The potency of these toxins are identified and cross neutralization using neuro polyvalent anti-venom (NPAV) is carried out in search for a more affordable and accessible treatment to deadly beaked sea snake bites.