5-speed listening (Snakebite - Level 1)

Scientists hope to find cure for snakebites






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Scientists hope to find a cure for snakebite. Snakebite experts around the world are using the same technology used to discover HIV anti-bodies. They are trying to use human anti-bodies to fight against the snake venom. Snakebite is treated using anti-venom made from the snake's venom. A professor said: "We're pursuing what we call the 'next generation' of snakebite therapies, which we hope will be able to treat bites from any snake."

Snakebites kill 140,000 people a year. They kill more people than rabies does. A further 400,000 people get terrible injuries, including loss of arms and legs and stress. About 250 types of snake have a harmful venom. Every venom is very different. This makes finding a cure challenging for scientists. A former UN Secretary-General said snakebite was, "the biggest public health crisis you have likely never heard of". People can survive with the right anti-venom.

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