A study published in the Journal of Virology reveals that antibodies from dromedary camels protected uninfected mice from MERS and helped the infected mice expunge the disease.

MERS, which emerged in humans last year in the Saudi Arabian peninsula, causes severe respiratory disease, with a high mortality rate of 35-40 percent. No specific therapy is currently available.

“Our results suggest that these antibodies might prove therapeutic for MERS patients, and might protect uninfected household members and healthcare workers against MERS,” says corresponding author Stanley Perlman, MD, PhD, a professor in the Departments of Microbiology and Pediatrics, the University of Iowa, Iowa City.

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