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4 Year Old Llama Might Hold The Key Ingredient To Neutralizing The Coronavirus

Researchers from the US and Belgium think a four-year-old llama named Winter may hold a key ingredient for antibody research that could help fight the novel coronavirus.

Winter produces special antibodies that allows her to stave off infections against SARS and MERS and very preliminary results suggest the antibodies could be used to successfully fight COVID-19.

She and 130 other llamas are located on a research farm in Belgium, where they have been used for antibody research against SARS and MERS, both cousins of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, since 2016.

But this isn't the first time llamas have been used for antibody research. They've also provided promising treatment candidates for HIV and influenza.

While humans can only produce large antibodies to fight off diseases, llamas can also produce tiny ones called nanobodies, which could better target viruses because of their size.

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