New Enzyme That Eats Nicotine Can Help Quit Smoking, Say Researchers

Here is good news for those who are willing to quit smoking but are finding it difficult as researchers have found a nicotine-chomping natural enzyme, which can successfully help to quit smoking.

Study researchers said that the enzyme has been recreated in lab settings and is a good candidate for a new drug that could be targeted at smokers who are having trouble quitting.

The enzyme known as NicA2 was discovered by scientists at the Scripps Research Institute, according to a Business Standard report. Study indicates that the enzyme could provide an alternative to anti-smoking aid, which usually fails 80% to 90% of time.

By using this enzyme therapy, scientists could have the bacteria-derived nicotine assassin search it out and intercept it before it gets to the brain, stopping the person from experiencing any pleasure from that smoking episode.

The enzyme comes from the bacteria pseudomonaus putida, which was originally found in the soil in tobacco fields, and was found to consume nicotine to produce enough carbon and nitrogen for it to survive.

Researchers suggest that higher dosage with some chemical alterations can help to bring even faster reduction, keeping nicotine in the blood from ever reaching the brain.

In order to test whether the enzyme is a viable drug or not, researchers tested it to see if it would remain stable. Results showed that the enzyme remained stable for up to 3 weeks at 98 degrees.

Study's first author Song Xue, a Scripps graduate student, said, "Hopefully we can improve its serum [blood] stability with our future studies so that a single injection may last up to a month".