The researchers of UCLA have led a discovery that shown an action of new pill on the alcohol in the blood. The pill looks like a capsule with essential enzymes combination inside it.
Yunfeng Lu, a professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering at the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science, has published these information on Feb. 17 in the journal Nature Nanotechnology. The pill helps liver to speed up the elimination of alcohol from the body.
“The pill acts in a way extremely similar to the way your liver does,” Lu said. “With further research, this discovery could be used as a preventative measure or antidote for alcohol intoxication. It works not like liver protector”.
Naturally occurring enzymes within cells often work in tandem to transform molecules or eliminate toxins. Professor’s group assembled multiple enzymes to mimic the natural process. An enzyme known as an alcohol oxidase, for example, can promote the oxidization of alcohol but also produces hydrogen peroxide, which is free radical and causes lipid peroxidation. Another type of enzyme, a catalase, causes the decomposition of hydrogen peroxide into water and oxygen. Placing the two enzymes next to each other can effectively remove alcohol without producing dangerous metabolites.
The researchers placed enzymes in a capsule made of polymer, measuring just tens of nanometers in diameter. The wall of the polymer capsule is only one nanometer thick – about 100,000 times thinner than a strand of human hair. The capsule protects the enzymes from the biological fluids of the body and allows them to freely enter an alcohol molecule. In this way, the nanocapsule mimics an organelle, a structure found in cells that spurs chemical reactions.
The investigators used a mouse model to test the
effectiveness of the enzyme package as an antidote after alcohol consumption. They found that blood alcohol levels in mice that received the enzyme package fell more quickly than in mice that did not. Blood alcohol levels of the antidote test group were 16% lower than the control group after 50 minutes, 26.1% lower after 85 minutes and 35% lower after three hours.
In a test of how well the enzyme delivery system worked as a prophylactic when consumed at the same time as alcohol, the researchers found that blood alcohol levels in the mice that received the enzymes were much more lower than in control-group mice during all the time of experiment.
“Considering the vast library of enzymes that are currently or potentially available,” the authors said, “novel classes of enzyme nanocomplexes could be built for a broad range of applications.”