Cure for the common cold

Posted on October 10, 2011

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        In an attempt to cure the common cold, Todd Rider and the team at the MIT Lincoln Labs are developing a potent virus killer known as D.R.A.C.O. that could change the future of modern medicine.

        Draco, named after the brutal Athenian who executed citizens accused of crimes, is extremely effective in the eradication of viruses. The protein was tested on a variety of diseases, from H1N1 to the rhinovirus, which is attributed to the common cold. Draco succeeded in killing each and every virus without harming its host. 

        Draco (Double-stranded RNA Activated Caspace Oligomerizer) works by recognizing the “double-stranded RNA produced by virtually all viruses, and if it finds that inside one of your cells, it kills that cell to terminate the infection and save all the rest of your cells,” according to Todd Rider, senior scientist at MIT Lincoln Labs and head of the Draco project.

        Todd Rider went on to say that Draco should be effective in the eradication of all viruses from “common viruses… to major clinical viruses… to viruses that might be used in bioterrorism.” 

        Testing, experimentation, and research began around 11 years ago, according to Mr. Rider. “It took us that long to get enough funding, develop DRACOs, do all the cell and mouse experiments,” he added. The virus killer is currently being tested on mice and human cell samples, and will be tested on human subjects in the new future. 

        Rider believes Draco should, in theory, work on everyone to the fullest effect. Also, the protein “should be effective against virtually any virus.” 

        When asked about the administering and release of Draco, he commented that the protein “should be very effective and safe. It’s too soon to know how much it would cost if it were mass-produced, but we hope it would be relatively inexpensive. Currently it is an injection, but we are working on pill forms that we hope could ultimately be used.”

         Understandably, Draco has the potential to completely change the future of modern medicine and “has the potential to revolutionize the treatment and prevention of virtually all viral illnesses.” However, there are some apparent questions to be asked about the effects of Draco as a virus killer.

         An article in the San Francisco Gate claimed that “this amounts to outsmarting the planet’s efforts to rein in our population to re-establish ecological and climactic stasis.” Many also believe that eradication of viruses may result in overpopulation. 

         While Draco is still currently undergoing testing, and will likely remain in that stage for some time, it is apparent that modern medicine and treatment of diseases will not be the same after this discovery. Rampant diseases such as HIV, Ebola, even the common cold, may see their impending doom within the next few months or years, and already have with the productive MIT labs.

Reported by Ian Siepker

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