How a Bay Area doctor’s search for a snakebite drug might lead to a COVID treatment, too

The other companies that have come up with promising approaches to snakebite aren’t as far along as Ophirex. At the University of California-Irvine, chemist Ken Shea and his team created a nanogel — a kind of polymer used in medical applications — that blocks key proteins in the venom that cause cell destruction. At the Technical University of Denmark, Andreas Laustsen is looking at engineering bacteria to manufacture anti-venom in fermentation tanks.