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Venom-Derived Drugs and the Toxin Libraries of Venomtech and ToxinTech

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Our previous article regarding snake venom, spike proteins and Covid injections related to published scientific research, read HERE.  This second part relates to the business of animal venoms, in particular snake venoms, and their use in medicine.

The difference between venom and poison is how the toxin is delivered. Venom enters the body through some form of battery – it is actively injected, for example, a bite or a sting – whereas a poison is ingested, inhaled or absorbed through the skin.

There are over 150,000 plant and animal species that have venom and these venoms contain an estimated 20 million different toxin molecules. Venoms come from a variety of animals including fish, amphibians, insects, spiders, starfish, sea urchins, sea anemones, jellyfish, corals and reptiles such as snakes.

The use of venom as medicine has been occurring for quite some time, even if much of the world was unaware of it. The first HIV drug, for example, came from a sea sponge, while a heart disease drug is derived from the foxglove plant.

Snake venom has yielded several drugs used today, more so compared to other animal venoms. One of the reasons being it is relatively abundant compared to the minute amounts produced by scorpions and snails. Many drugs derived from snake venom target the cardiovascular system.

Not only is snake venom, for example, used to make pharmaceutical drugs, but it is also used for research purposes to learn more about how drugs work and how they interact with the human body.

Read more: The Medical Uses of Venom and The bite that cures: how we’re turning venom into medicine


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Snake venom and life-saving drugs

Bristol-Myers Squibb’s Captopril, the first venom-derived drug of modern times, became available in the UK and the US in 1981. It is derived from the venom of a Brazilian pit viper.  It’s mostly used to treat high blood pressure, or hypertension, though it is also prescribed for some types of congestive heart failure. The drug acts as an angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor, effectively turning off one of the body’s main pathways for vein constriction that increases blood pressure.

Read more: Medical menagerie: a gallery of venomous creatures, Mosaic (Wellcome), 24 March 2015

“Venom is a cocktail of natural toxins [and] can contain as little as 20 to 30 toxins [and up] to 100 toxins,” said Kini R Manjunatha, professor of biological sciences at the National University of Singapore, whose team works with 70 to 100 snake venoms at any one time.

By 2015, seven drugs derived from animal venom had been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) to treat conditions ranging from hypertension and other heart conditions to chronic pain and diabetes. Ten more were in clinical trials and even more in pre-clinical stages awaiting tests for safety and then trials in humans.

Read more: How nature’s deadliest venoms are saving lives, CNN, 15 September 2015

By 2019, there were around 20 different medications originating from animal venoms.

Extracted from the list of Drugs from venom peptides

Another drug derived from snake venom is Integrilin.  The FDA first approved Integrilin in 1998 and the following year it received approval from the European Union (“EU”).  The marketing authorisation holder in the EU is GlaxoSmithKline. 

Medical professionals commonly prescribe Integrilin to heart attack patients. But many people don’t realise that the active ingredient, eptifibatide, was originally derived from a protein found in the venom of the pygmy rattlesnake.

Read more: Snake venom is a boon in search for life-saving drugs, CNN, 17 November 2020

The pygmy rattlesnake is abundant in its native range, which extends through several southern states in the US from Louisiana to Florida. According to the University of Florida, it has not killed a single person with its venomous bite.

In August 2021, Brazilian researchers published their paper in Molecules.  The study found the molecule produced by the jararacussu pit viper inhibited the coronavirus’ ability to multiply in monkey cells by 75%.

“We were able to show this component of snake venom was able to inhibit a very important protein from the virus,” said Rafael Guido, a University of Sao Paulo professor and an author of the study.

The molecule is a peptide, or chain of amino acids, that can connect to an enzyme of the coronavirus called PLPro, which is vital to the reproduction of the virus.  The molecule is already known for its antibacterial qualities and the peptide can be synthesised in the laboratory.

Read more: Brazilian viper venom may become tool in fight against coronavirus, study shows, Reuters, 31 August 2021

Snake venom can now be made in the lab

A 2020 article describes how scientists are applying stem cell research and genome mapping hoping it will bring antivenom production into the 21st Century.

Researchers in the Netherlands created venom-producing glands from the Cape Coral Snake and eight other snake species in the lab, using stem cells.  In a parallel breakthrough, scientists in India sequenced the genome of the Indian cobra.

“They’ve really moved the game on,” said Nick Cammack, head of the snakebite team at UK medical research charity Wellcome. “These are massive developments because it’s bringing 2020 science into a field that’s been neglected.”

Read more: Snake venom can now be made in a lab and that could save many lives, CNN, 6 November 2020

Venom and toxin libraries

By way of example, to describe what venom and toxin libraries are and the functions they perform, we briefly look at two companies:  Venomtech, which has the largest venom library in the UK; and, ToxinTech, which provides a Designer Toxin platform. It’s not clear whether ToxinTech’s customers develop their own toxin libraries on the platform or make use of toxin data stored in ToxinTech’s library, or possibly both.

The difference between the two libraries is Venomtech provides minute volumes of toxin molecules while ToxinTech provides, essentially, a genetic database of toxins.

To borrow, and slightly adapt, the sentiment of Medicine News as we wholeheartedly agree:

For the record, we do not ascribe nefarious intent on the part of ToxinTech or Venomtech. However, we recognise that their venom libraries may be exploited and misused by bad actors to, for example, create weapons of mass destruction based on venom peptides that are engineered to kill.

1. Venomtech

Venomtech was incorporated in 2010.  The founder Steven Trim studied genetics at Aberystwyth University, Wales, and briefly worked at both Pfizer and Wellcome before starting up Venomtech of which he owns more than 50% but less than 75% of the shares.

As confirmation of Trim’s background in genetics, referring to an article published in the Guardian ‘First complete gap-free human genome sequence published’, Venomtech posted on their LinkedIn page: “Our founder and CSO is very proud to have been part of mapping the human genome back in the 90s.”

Venomtech’s interim chairman is Professor Karol Sikora, a medical doctor specialising in oncology, whose reputation the establishment has attempted to destroy for querying Covid policies, such as the need for harsh lockdowns, and for kicking up a necessary fuss over the NHS’s suspension of various forms of medical treatment, including for cancer.

One article attempting to “cancel” Prof. Sikora is written by the hard-left activist with no life experience twerp Owen Jones and published in the Guardian. Jones’ attempted take-down of Prof. Sikora comes as high praise for those who seek the truth about Covid and are familiar with Jones’ activism journalism.  You can read Jones’ article HERE.

Venomtech has venom from approximately 200 animals – roughly 30% from snakes, 30% from tarantulas, 10% from true spiders, 20% from scorpions and 10% from others, for example, jellyfish and insects. According to their website, these 200 venoms can be fractionated or separated into 20,000 peptides, proteins, and small molecules giving Venomtech the largest library of naturally sourced venom-derived compounds available in the UK.

Venomtech owns the trademark T-VDA, Targeted-Venom Discovery Array, which is used by their customers for research purposes.  At this point, it’s important to highlight the difference between a trademark and a patent.  A trademark protects a symbol, name, word/s, logo, or design that represents the brand or source of the good, whereas a patent protects an inventor’s invention or product itself.

T-VDA is an array or rows of wells on a plate containing venom components from 12-15 targeted species with 1-5 peptides per well.

Understanding Animal Research: Drug Discovery with Venom, 31 October 2019 (4 mins)

One of the core challenges is that many existing drugs based on venom peptides have to be injected because most peptides break down in the digestive system. To develop a venom-based pill, the drug needs to resist being broken down in the gut or liver, but still dissolve in the bloodstream, Trim was quoted as saying in a 2019 National Geographic article.  That means re-engineering the peptides themselves—a line of research that “is the exciting new science for me,” he said.

Read more: How harnessing the powers of venom could lead to new medicines, National Geographic, 8 September 2021

In April 2022, Venomtech announced its collaboration with Charles River.  Venomtech CEO Dr. Paul Grant said:

“Venomtech has been at the forefront of venom research for drug discovery for more than a decade. Through this relationship with Charles River Laboratories – a global leader for drug discovery contract research – we can now showcase our innovative technology, introducing the wider industry to the potential of venoms for the successful delivery of more leads, more quickly, for a broad range of targets.”

Vad Lazari, Director of Biology at Charles River, added:

“In collaboration with Venomtech, we can now offer our clients access to bespoke venom libraries, potentially accelerating their discovery pipelines using this powerful natural resource. This arrangement will enable us to draw on Venomtech’s specialist biological knowledge to quickly follow up hits and promising leads, helping our clients to overcome longstanding specificity challenges and exploit novel modes of action.”

2. ToxinTech Designer Toxins

A patent was filed in 2008 by inventors Zoltan Takacs and Steven A. Goldstein and granted in 2014 for ‘Identification of toxin ligands’. A ligand is any molecule or atom which binds reversibly to a protein. Work for this invention was partially funded by a grant awarded by the US National Institute of Health. “The government may have certain rights in this invention,” the patent states.

Although the term is not mentioned in the patent document, this seems to be the patent for the “Designer Toxin” platform.

According to a 2010 article published by the University of Chicago, Dr. Zoltan Takacs along with biophysicist Steve Goldstein had recently developed the state-of-the-art “Designer Toxin” technology allowing the creation of “toxin libraries” with a potential to contain up to millions of toxin variants ready to screen for those that bind to a potential drug target.

As well as being the co-inventor of the Designer Toxin drug discovery platform, Takacs is the founder of ToxinTech, a biotech company that houses a library of “designer toxins,” available to researchers studying drug development.

BBC’s Science Focus described Takacs in 2019 as “a Hungarian-born scientist-adventurer who founded the World Toxin Bank.”  The article, Science Focus noted at the end, was first published in 2016.  We searched the internet for more information regarding the World Toxin Bank but apart from mentions that it was founded by Takacs we were unable to find further details.  However, the website worldtoxinbank.com lands on a page identical to ToxinTech’s Designer Toxins page, toxintech.com, indicating it is the same as Designer Toxins.

In 2014 Takacs co-authored a paper with University of Chicago’s  Dr. Sandeep Nathan titled ‘Animal Venoms in Medicine’.  “Today, approximately 15 pharmaceuticals derived from toxins exist, including first-in-class, top-selling, and life-saving medications,” the authors wrote.

In around 2010, Takacs contacted Nathan to discuss a collaboration. “We were approaching [venom-derived] compounds from two very different vantage points,” Nathan remembered Takacs telling him. “He wanted to discuss possibilities for academic collaboration and education.”

While Nathan administers the venom-derived drugs to his patients, Takacs is on the other end of the process — finding the sources in the field: the venomous creatures themselves.

Takacs collects venoms from around the world, often in remote areas, to get his hands on new venom samples. Once back in the lab with his collection of samples, he isolates the toxins’ DNA from the tissues. Then the work starts. Takacs “chops up” the toxins into “bits and pieces” with genetic engineering, and rearranges the parts in every possible combination to create “mosaic toxins.”

Using Designer Toxins technology Takacs fuses natural toxins from different venomous animals into a single molecule. This technique is used to create vast libraries of toxin variants, such as the World Toxin Bank, that can be screened against known drug targets to find toxins that have the highest promise to treat diseases.

His toxin library can accommodate up to a million different toxins and their engineered variants, in order to test which ones are most promising for medicinal use.

Read more: Snake venom is a boon in search for life-saving drugs and The bite that cures: how we’re turning venom into medicine and Around the world in the pursuit of toxins

In mid-2020 National Geographic’s Lizzie Daly interviewed Takacs, who at the time was in Hungary, about his adventures and how toxic venom can save lives.

He said that out of the top three medications used for the most lethal types of heart attacks, two of them are derived from snake venom. One of the most often prescribed medications, used by 40 million patients all over the world, comes from snake venom.

Takacs described his life and his work, how he catches animals and extracts DNA samples – in the case of snakes, for example, blood samples or even skin that has been shed – to be sent back to the lab to extract the genetic blueprint of their toxins.  “And then comes bioinformatics in the computer. We design the largest toxin libraries, literally like, a million or two million or more toxin variants in this library. And then screen which one out of that million-strong library is best for targeting a receptor which could be used to take a disease under control,” he explained.

Takacs and his colleagues have the largest library of jellyfish toxins.  “We have a library of, I think, 1,5 million toxins,” he said.

National Geographic: Lifesaving Medicines from Venomous Animals – Meet the Expert, Zoltan Takacs, 16 July 2020 (48 mins)

Now that we’ve conducted our own brief research, we feel ready to compare notes with what others have found.  The Health Ranger Report and Natural News have been publishing a series of podcasts and articles on this subject and so may be a good place to start.  We’ve listed them below should you wish to delve further yourself.  Stay curious.

Health Ranger Report videos

  1. Part 1/3 – Dr. Bryan Ardis reveals BOMBSHELL origins of covid, mRNA vaccines and treatments
  2. Situation Update, April 12, 2022 – Corona Virus = King Cobra VENOM
  3. Part 2/3 – Dr. Bryan Ardis reveals BOMBSHELL origins of covid, mRNA vaccines and treatments
  4. Situation Update, April 13, 2022 – “VenomTech” company announces massive library of SNAKE VENOM peptides for pharmaceutical deployment
  5. Naysayers who dismiss the SNAKE VENOM reality of drug development are simply IGNORANT
  6. Part 3/3 – Dr. Bryan Ardis reveals BOMBSHELL origins of covid, mRNA vaccines and treatments
  7. Shocking list of VENOM-derived pharmaceuticals swallowed by Millions
  8. Follow-up: Dr. Ardis answers the top questions about “venom theory”
  9. 13 Irrefutable FACTS about VENOM, Big Pharma and biological weapons

Natural News articles

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[…] April 19, 2022Venom-Derived Drugs and the Toxin Libraries of Venomtech and ToxinTech […]

rachelPB
rachelPB
3 months ago

Big pharma and NIH push Remdesivir as treatment while killing patients with this drug. Dr Harvy Risch stated HCQ and Ivermectin have similar results and government and corporate corruption illegitimately cut it off from treament protocols. Dr Richard Urso also stated that even if HCQ and Ivermectin are blocked from doctors to use these medicines as treatment for Covid.

Kelly
Kelly
3 months ago

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[…] April 19, 2022Venom-Derived Drugs and the Toxin Libraries of Venomtech and ToxinTech […]

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[…] an interview with National Geographic Dr. Zoltan Takacs, founder of ToxinTech, mentioned he was allergic to both snake venom and its antivenom. “I’m allergic to the snake […]

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[…] an interview with National Geographic Dr. Zoltan Takacs, founder of ToxinTech, mentioned he was allergic to both snake venom and its antivenom. “I’m allergic to the snake […]

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[…] – Venom-Derived Drugs and the Toxin Libraries of Venomtech and ToxinTech […]

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[…] an interview with National Geographic Dr. Zoltan Takacs, founder of ToxinTech, mentioned he was allergic to both snake venom and its antivenom. “I’m allergic to the snake […]

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[…] April 19, 2022Venom-Derived Drugs and the Toxin Libraries of Venomtech and ToxinTech […]

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[…] April 19, 2022Venom-Derived Drugs and the Toxin Libraries of Venomtech and ToxinTech […]