Scientists who cloned Dolly the sheep ‘in talks over coronavirus treatment’ –

Posted: April 11, 2020 at 3:50 am

The lab which helped to clone Dolly the sheep are set to help in the fight against Covid-19 (Picture: PA)

The scientists responsible for cloning Dolly the sheep are reportedly in talks with the Government over a potential coronavirus treatment.

Researchers from TC Biopharm near Glasgow have used the new therapy which uses immunity-building cell transfusions to successfully treat cancer and plan to use immune cells from young and healthy volunteers to battle Covid-19.

The Daily Telegraph reported they are now hoping it will also work against the virus, and are in talks with the Government to trial the therapy for that purpose. It is hoped that the therapy will be available in NHS hospitals by July.

Dr Brian Kelly, senior strategic medical adviser to TC Biopharm, told the paper: One of the key challenges of fighting viral infection is to develop something that is going to attack the infected cells and not the normal cells.

So the solution that we came up with was to look at the bodys natural defences to viral infection.

Dr Kelly continued: In patients who have successfully fought a viral infection, they have expanded their own immune system and that persists after that to stop them becoming infected again.

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The donor T-cells differ from normal immune cells. That is because they do not identify invaders in the body based on alien protrusions on the surface of cells, but by detecting the unusual metabolism of viruses.

When the donor cells detect a virus, they begin to destroy while also signalling it to the rest of the immune system as an alien intrusion requiring eradication.

Dr Kelly said that with this approach even if the virus mutated and returned to a body the infusion exercise could be repeated and would still work.

TC Biopharm was founded by Angela Scott, who was part of the team who cloned Dolly the Sheep in Edinburgh in 1996 in an iconic scientific moment.

There is currently no cure for Covid-19 though various vaccines are at different stages in their development across the world.

Today the UK recorded another surge in deaths linked to people hospitalised with Covid-19, as a toll of 708 brought the official total to more than 4,000.

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Scientists who cloned Dolly the sheep 'in talks over coronavirus treatment' -

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