Pitt team discovers new way to find nanobodies to fight disease

PITTSBURGH — A new technique developed by University of Pittsburgh researchers with help from Hebrew University of Jerusalem has the promise of an inexpensive way to find new treatments for diseases like Covid-19 as well as other upper respiratory viruses and even cancer.

It’s the same team, led by Yi Shi, an assistant professor of cell biology at the University of Pittsburgh, that discovered using mass spectrometry technology a way to pull out nanobodies — very small antibodies — from a blood sample from a llama. Llamas have super-charged antibodies that are smaller and more potent at fighting disease. The llama nanobodies would create an antibody that could knock out the SARS-CoV-2 virus before it gets started.

Read more from our news partners at the Pittsburgh Business Times.