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September 21 2012

Snake venom may be 'drug source'


Venomous reptiles may provide a good source for new drugs for human diseases, researchers in Liverpool say.

Venom has already been used to create drugs, but the chemicals in it are often too deadly for human consumption.

However, a study, published in the journal Nature Communications, has shown snakes and lizards have "reclaimed" some toxins and used them, safely, elsewhere in their own bodies.

Scientists think these reclaimed toxins could make safe and effective drugs.

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