Researchers hunting for new antibiotics might get some aid from gator blood. Scientists are zeroing in on snippets of proteins found in American alligator blood that kill a wide range of disease-causing microbes and bacteria, including the formidable MRSA or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.
Previous experiments have revealed that gator blood extract cripples many human pathogens, including E. coli, the herpes simplex virus and some strains of the yeast Candida albicans. The serum’s antimicrobial power probably derives from protein bits called peptides. Widespread among reptiles and amphibians, several such germ-fighting peptides have been isolated from the skin of frogs in recent years… ( Link )
Whenever I read stories like this, I just can’t help but think about the origins of humankind. Looking through the human genome, it becomes clear that our DNA is fully ape plus the addition of some mutations spread throughout the genome. Theoretically, a divine creator could’ve created humankind as an amalgamation of superior animal traits (like adding some of the the immune system traits found in alligators). I’ve read that camels have a similarly unusual immune system that might make it over to human medicine:
Antibodies, often described as magic bullets, are actually more like tanks: big, complicated and expensive. Tinier “nanobodies,” derived from camels and llamas, may be able to infiltrate a wider range of diseases at lower cost. That is the hope, at least, of one small start-up in Belgium. (Link)
But instead of our “divine creator” inserting these enhanced traits into the “pinnacle of creation”, our genome is just a few percent different from chimpanzees, with no obvious insertions of any additional traits (which would be difficult to explain from an evolutionary perspective). Like I said earlier, there are no chimeras.