EP67 - a synthetic protein – has been found very helpful in activating the immune system and fighting the flu back if it is administered within twenty-four hours of exposure to flu virus.
A team of scientists from San Diego State University and the Nebraska Medical Center tested the EP67 protein in mice infected with the flu virus.
Mice usually lose around 20 per cent of their body weight when exposed to the flu virus, but when the scientists treated the infected mice with the EP67 protein they lost an average of just 6 per cent of their body weight. Some of the mice did not lose any weight at all.
The researchers were surprised to see that the protein saved even the lives of those mice that were infected with a lethal dose of influenza.
The study’s lead author, Joy Phillips, said, “EP67 can protect from a lethal dose of influenza even when treatment is delayed for a full day after the time of infection.”
Phillips added that the protection is not restricted to a single strain of influenza. It was found protective against all strains of influenza A or B.
The protein has not been tested against highly pathogenic infections such as the H5N1 influenza, but Phillips said it is possible that the protein would also protect against such strains.