Researchers Use GM Soy to Produce Anti-HIV Protein

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Andreia Verdélio reports from Agência Brasil

Biotechnology is increasingly pointing out new directions for the pharmaceutical industry. The latest news is that researchers at Brazil’s Agricultural Research Corporation (EMBRAPA) have successfully extracted and purified cyanovirin-N grown in genetically modified soybeans. Cyanovirin-N is a protein found in cyanobacteria that can prevent HIV from proliferating in the human body.

The study published in Science magazine confirmed that GM soybean seeds are currently the most effective biofactory and a viable alternative for producing the protein in large scale. “We have been working to achieve this for five or six years. We have successfully accumulated a large amount of cyanovirin in soybeans and purified it,” said Elíbio Rech, a researcher at EMBRAPA Genetic Resources and Biotechnology.

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