Plant found in Australia with venom similar to scorpion venom

Painful sensations make life very difficult for people, and in order to neutralize them, you need to study the very mechanism of the onset of pain. In this regard, the Australian tree "gimpi-gimpi", as the indigenous people call it, or in scientific terms Dendrocnide, has become a real gift to scientists. Like nettles, the entire outer surface of the plant is covered with tiny hollow trichome tubes containing a mysterious poison.

The main difficulty with Dendrocnide is that the pain after the injection quickly disappears, but the affected area itself continues to store its source. And with an awkward touch, even when trying to wash, the pain flares up again. A victim of poisoning can suffer for weeks, and according to one legend, even a dried leaf in a herbarium of 100 years old was able to sting. Until recently, scientists were at a loss as to how this is possible.

With the development of genetic analysis, Australian scientists were finally able to study the venom of the treacherous tree in detail. They discovered a new peptide called gimpietide, a molecule that has a complex three-dimensional structure with numerous internal bonds. This provides her with incredible stability and stability, so the stories about the "eternal" source of pain are not far from the truth. But what is most surprising is the almost complete resemblance of gimpietid to spider and scorpion toxins.

This toxin affects the ion channel in the cell, which is considered the main indicator of pain. In a cell affected by toxins, this channel cannot close, so the sensation of pain does not pass, constantly interferes with the body and weakens it. It is a natural neurotoxin that is also injected into the victim's body like a professional medical injection, providing maximum effect. How evolution created this ingenious mechanism is one big mystery. But at the same time - and a considerable help to researchers in the study of pain.