While scientists have developed cures and vaccines for a host of medical afflictions, there still are many diseases that plague humanity. The use of peptide therapy may prove as a way to treat many types of autoimmune disorders as well as neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s disease and even common ailments such as allergies.
Peptides are simply a compound that is created when two or more amino acids are linked into a chain. These peptides then form proteins, which carry out almost all of our cellular functions. The type of peptides that are formed when these amino acids come together determines what type of protein will be created. There are many types of proteins, each with its own specific job within the body.
This important process begins with the building blocks of protein, which are the amino acids. When two amino acids are joined, like links in a chain, this is known as a peptide bond. While these are long and planar, they also can bend and fold, and the way that they fold has a huge effect not only on the type of protein that is formed, but also how well it functions. A protein with any type of peptide mutation can be the cause of a serious disease or biological anomaly, such as Crohn’s disease or anemia.
This formation of peptides and proteins is a natural process occurring in all humans. However, the process also can be achieved in a lab artificially as peptide synthesis or the creation of synthetic peptides. These synthetic peptides can be copies of naturally occurring peptides or completely new types of peptides.
There are many ways in which peptide synthesis can be used. For example, researchers might hire a biotechnology firm that provides peptide synthesis services so that they can further their studies of the active parts of different protein molecules. Another big use of peptide synthesis is to help develop therapies such as vaccines. These vaccines can be used to introduce new structure into a cell which can then fight a specific disease.
There are already many studies that show the usefulness of peptide therapy in fighting a huge range of diseases. After all, mutations occur in all different types of proteins, and each of these mutations has serious ramifications. Developing a therapy that can alter the peptides means that researchers might be able to alleviate the effects of or completely halt the progression of diseases such as Multiple Sclerosis, cancer and much more. A recent study using mice showed that the effects of Parkinson’s disease could be slowed using a new vaccine. Other studies indicate that peptide therapy can be used to greatly slow the progression of growth in cancerous tumors.
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