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Institute of Physiology after L.A. Orbeli Institute of Physiology after L.A. Orbeli
Division of Natural Sciences

Macrovipera Lebetina Obtusa and other endemic viper venom antiserum production

N Investment project title Macrovipera Lebetina Obtusa and other endemic viper venom antiserum production
1. Sector

Pharmacology

2. Project description

Using a similarity coefficient we have estimated that the similarity of venom proteins between the two Macrovipera lebetina populations of Former Soviet Union (M.l. obtusa and M.l. turanica) is less than 4%, and is mainly restricted to the group of dimeric disintegrins. Therefore, although our comparative proteomic analysis would support the classification of M.l. obtusa and M.l. transmediterranea as different species, additional detailed genomic analyses are also required to address this point and to assess whether their distinct venom protein profiles arise from expression of population-specific genes or from distinct translation patterns of the same genome. However, specific antivenom is available only for some Middle Asian snake species, including M.l. turanica but not M.l. obtusa or V. raddei. Currently, the only one antivenom product is available in Armenia from Uzbekistan, which contains the antibodies not only against Middle Asian gjurza venom (M.l. turanica), but also antibodies against cobra (Naja oxiana) and efa (Echis carinatus). This antiserum is a very allergic treatment for patients, so it could cause a number of hard side-effects, and moreover, it is very expensive for our clinics (140 000AMD per one 10ml vial). Besides the viper venom antiserum, we could manufacture also single toxins from venom composition, which are unique proteins with wide range of applications in biochemical analysis, and some Armenian analogs of classical known pharmaceutical products with viper venom (like as Viprosal B, (Tallin); price – 1750AMD; etc.).

3. Project implementation period 3 years
4. Project location L.Orbeli Institute of Physiology of NAS RA
5. Project overall cost (USD) 518.000
6. Required investments (USD) 368.000
7. Own funds (USD) 150.000
8. Creation of jobs At the beginning of the project At the end of the project
15 21
9. Payback period 2 years
10. Annual profitability index Min USD 180.000
11. Detailed costs

-

12. Offer to investor

Due to protocols of WHO Guidelines for the Production, Control and Regulation of Snake Antivenom Immunoglobulins (Geneve, Switzerland, 2010) from 15mg of solid venom after 8 weeks of immunization of equines we could have the 15l of antiserum (therefore – 1500 vial with 10 ml of antivenom each). Even the realization of this pilot series of product among the registered net of 129 clinics and 514 ambulance-policlinics with low cost of 50 000 AMD per vial could return the 1/4-rd of the investment.
Additionally, this product is extremely necessary in Military hospitals, because the Military servants are the snakebites’ target groups N1 in our country.

13. Contact details

Naira Ayvazyan, Director of L.Orbeli Institute of Physiology of NAS RA
E-mail: taipan {[ at ]} ysu.am
Tel.: (+374 10) 272247; (+374 91) 587344



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