Researchers Butantan Institute succeeded in reducing the toxicity and potentiating the analgesic effect of crotoxin by encapsulating it in nanostructured silica. The results of tests in an animal model of neuropathic pain are promising.
Crotoxin, extracted from the venom of the South American rattlesnake Crotalus durissus terrificus, has been studied for almost a century for its analgesic, anti-inflammatory and antitumor activities and as an even more powerful muscle paralyzer than botulinum toxin. However, the toxicity of crotoxin limits its medicinal use.
A new study, published by Brazilian researchers in the journal Toxins, shows that crotoxin's therapeutic effects can be enhanced and its toxicity reduced when it is encapsulated in nanostructured SBA-15 silica, a material originally developed for use in vaccine formulations......