Vikash Sharma

Scorpion envenomation is one of the most severe problems in several countries across the globe. Due to its life-threatening sting, the Indian red scorpion (Mesobuthus tumulus) is considered one of the world's most dangerous scorpions.

As per a PIB report, intravenous administration of equine anti-scorpion antivenom (ASA), raised against M. tamulus venom (MTV), is the only available treatment for scorpion stings. However, the low proportion of venom-specific antibodies against the most abundant low molecular mass channel toxin is a barrier to efficient clinical management of scorpion sting patients.

Therefore, the high anti-venom requirement may lead to adverse serum reactions in treated patients. Scorpion envenomation and its treatment need extensive research and alternative therapies.

A team of scientists from the Institute of Advanced Study in Science and Technology (IASST), an autonomous institute of the Department of Science and Technology as well as researchers from scholars from Tezpur University NIELIT, Guwahati have invented novel therapeutic drug formulations (TDF).

The therapeutic drug formulation comprises low doses of commercial ASA, AAA, and vitamin C, for inhibiting the Indian red scorpion venom-induced toxicity and associated symptoms, the report said.

The drug's efficacy was first tested on Caenorhabditis elegans, a free-living nematode model, as an alternative to an in vivo animal model. The research was recently published in the journal Toxins. An Indian patent has also been filed on this novel drug formulation, the report added.