A Live Mint news report examines a research paper by two scientists that explored the sleep-inducing properties of the snail venom conus araneosus.
In a research paper published in the Toxicon medical journal, scientists Jayaseelan Benjamin Franklin and Rajaiah Pushpabai Rajesh said they discovered the sleep-inducing properties of the venom of conus araneosus, while trying to identify various compounds in it.The intrigued researchers named the sleep-inducing part of the venom sandman peptide, inspired by the European mythical character who sprinkles magical sand in people’s eyes to put them to sleep to bring good dreams. A peptide is a kind of small proteins found in living beings. Their studies have been proven on mice.“The marine cone snails seem to have taken on the sandman’s role in the world of molluscs. The primary initiative of the study was to isolate and identify various components of the highly complex mix of poisons in this marine snail’s venom. Now that we have seen mice responding well, we will elaborate the study on other animals and also try and understand the mechanism of how it works,” said Franklin, a project scientist at the Andaman and Nicobar Centre for Ocean Science and Technology.