“Living Drug contains neutralizing antibody for Ebola Virus, which is not synthesized by immune system in presence of Ebola Virus, but when it is present, it inactivates the Ebola Virus. Immune system can readily attack the Inactive Ebola Virus and create immune memory and it is the beginning point of the immune system rally against the Ebola Virus.”
Above statement may confuse you, but it is the summary of this total document. Let’s go back into our previous discussion on Ebola Puzzle, there we have concluded that we are searching for an antibody which can attack the hidden target present on the Ebola Virus. Before going to discuss about the Antibody, let’s discuss regarding the hidden target.
To explain why it is a hidden targets, we need to take the example of ‘Turtle Defence’ model.
Turtles have a shell to protect themselves. They live in two ways, during favourable time they come out of the shell and during adverse times they withdraw into the shell and close all the openings.
In the similar way, Ebola virus has two stages, favourable time when it is present inside a cell and adverse time when it is present outside cell i.e traveling from one cell to another cell.
During favourable time i.e. inside a host cell, Ebola virus is in the comfort of host cell infrastructure and it assumes there is no threat from immune system, and utilizes the resources to multiply its generation. It doesn’t require a shell to protect it.
Whenever Ebola virus completely destroys a host cells it is visible to the host immune system and it is the adverse situation for it. It covers itself with the shell which is already synthesized and moves in the medium with the flow till it gets attached to another host cell and infects it. During movement it is shielding the immune system attack with its armour, and immune system can only see the armour but not the complete microbe. Immune system can only produce antibodies to the surface, which it can see or sense.
If we can notice the Turtle model even though it has head, legs and tail, during defence mode only shell is visible.
Immune system can only see the shell and only produces the antibody against it but not the complete organism, as it is not able to see it completely. Keeping the targets hidden is the strength of the Ebola Virus.
We need to break the defence system of the Ebola Virus in order it to be visible to the Immune system completely. But right Antibody can’t be synthesized by Immune System which is the reason Ebola is winning every time. Immune system needs a correct antibody supply from outside.
So, let us discuss about the antibody that we are searching for.
Let ‘N’ be the number of elements present in the universal set of targets to which any antibody can get attached. Let ‘X’ be the number of elements in the set which contains all the actual targets present on the Ebola Virus. Let ‘Y’ be the number of elements in the set containing number of targets identified by the immune system and hence developed Antibodies against them.
Here following is the relation which is always true.
N > X
N > Y
Here search space ‘Y’ is the explored area by all the organizations and from which Cocktail of Antibodies were selected and are being used for Ebola treatment.
But our research says that value of ‘X’ and ‘Y’ is not equal, and the relation is as follows.
X > Y
Clearly immune system is not identifying all the targets present on the Ebola Virus, if we think from the Virus success point of view, Ebola Virus is not showing all the targets to immune system.
We have two distinct search spaces, space ‘Y’ which is extensively used in the Antibody Cocktail projects and set ‘X-Y’ which is the search space for Living Drug project. First we will see what is happening in the Antibody Cocktail project and after that we will discuss Living Drug Project.
Antibody Cocktail Projects:
Let’s say time taken by Ebola Virus to travel from one cell to another cell be denoted by TE.
Any antibody from the set ‘Y’ (which is being utilized in Antibody Cocktail Projects) gets attached to the shell surface, and it will not hinder the movement of the shell. So it is nothing but TE.
It is known fact that, antibody can’t kill the microbe by itself, it is just a marker and it informs immune cells to attack the target it got attached to. Immune cells attack takes considerable amount of time. Let’s say TC is the time taken by the immune cells to attack the antibody-Ebola complex.
TE << TC
Here the value of TE is very small than the value of Tc. It means by the time Immune cells get hold of the target, Ebola Virus transfers its genetic material into a new cell leaving behind empty shell. Empty shell is a dead particle, hence immune system cells can’t carry out any further analysis.
Added to the complexity, most of the mutations of the virus are expressed in the set ‘Y’ zone, which leads to change of the target.
(E.g. Let say Ebola virus takes 1 minute for travelling from one cell to another, and immune cells required 20 minutes to capture it, each time there is a signal to capture, immune system cells reach the place to capture the antibody-Ebola Virus, but by that time Ebola has already completed its transfer. It is not serving our purpose)
These projects are trying to optimize the effectiveness of these antibodies by using multiple antibodies from this search space ‘Y’ so that combined antibody attachments may hinder the movement and also increase the probability of capturing the complex.
But distinct disadvantage in this method is, when the virus is in shell mode, even if immune cells capture the virus, its enzymes can’t break the Ebola Virus shell, because of which total approach may fail.
This reminds me of a favourite quote.
“Talent hits a target no one else can hit; Genius hits a target no one else can see.” — Arthur Schopenhauer
Living Drug Project Approach:
The problems with our so called genius approach is, we don’t know the boundary of our search space ‘X’. Living Drug project utilizes a search space which is not utilized earlier, i.e. (X – Y) search space, which is as good as searching (N – Y) search space.
Let’s take the turtle defence mechanism as example again. When the turtle is not in defence mode, its head and legs and tail are visible. Our antibody can only get attached to a place and it can’t kill or cause damage, so how we can make use of antibody to identify and also to slow down turtle movement. If we target tail, there will not be any change in its movement speed. If we target its legs there can be hindrance in movement but it can move. If we target respiratory opening then it can’t move after sometime, and it has to take rest. But these antibodies are never synthesized by immune system as it can’t see these targets. But we can supply it from outside.
In the same way living drug targets a vital spot on actual Ebola Virus which makes it immovable. During its movement from one cell to second cell, it can’t enter a new cell. Let’s say TEL is the time taken by Ebola-Living Drug complex to move from one cell to another cell.
TC << TEL
It provides enough time to Immune system surveillance cells to acquire the antibody-Ebola Complex and now immune system can attack the Ebola Virus and kill it and create an immune memory which is the starting point for Immune system rally against Ebola virus. Total cells of the Immune system start a coordinated attack on Ebola Virus till the last Virus particle is removed from the body. Body requires good food and healthy life style to accelerate the process, body is completely equipped to defend itself.
(E.g. Ebola-Living Drug Complex can’t enter a new cell and it is available in the medium for a period more than 24 hours and immune cells require 20 minutes to capture it. Immune system cells have got sufficient time to capture the target and Ebola Virus is not in defence mode at this point of time. Its shield has an opening and Immune system cells can carry out analysis and generate Immune memory for Ebola Virus.)
Time for another Favourite quote to end the discussion.
“Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex… It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction.” — E. F. Schumacher
But because of our approach, what is going to change. Innovation is of no use if it is not simplifying existing problems.
- Only 1 ml of Living Drug is enough to cure a adult Ebola patient.
- Small scale Manufacturing requires a maximum of 25 days for one batch and it costs between 15$ to 20$ per 1 ml.
- Large scale manufacturing can produce continuous supply and costs can be brought down to 3$ to 5$ per 1 ml.
- Till today we are taking medicines to cure a microbial infection and using a vaccine to keep the body informed about the microbe beforehand and following preventive methods to prevent the microbial infection. They are not at all related to each other. Living drug is going to connect all the three.
Continue reading each page for further details.