Scientists test new drug to treat covid-19

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Scientists from all over the world are in a real race against time to develop solutions against covid-19, a disease that has already infected 1.3 million more people and left a trail of more than 75 thousand deaths so far (07/04) . Now, a new drug is being tested for the treatment of cases and has already shown promising results.

Known as EIDD-2801, the novelty acts directly on the replication capacity of the coronavirus in the body, reducing its possibility of infecting new cells. It is a principle similar to that of remdesivir, an antiviral that is effective in the treatment against Ebola.

However, one of the great advantages of EIDD-2801 over remdesivir is that, instead of intravenous administration, it can be administered orally, in tablet form.

Effects of EIDD-2801 and hope against SARS-CoV-2

Researchers at Emory University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Vanderbilt University Medical Center first tested the new drug in cell cultures in the laboratory. With positive results, they administered the antiviral in rats infected with coronaviruses that cause SARS and MERS, highly contagious respiratory diseases.

In addition to having their viral load reduced in their bodies, the animals gained weight – something taken as a sign of recovery. The tests were not performed with SARS-CoV-2, responsible for covid-19, because the mice are not susceptible to such infections.

“The potential of EIDD-2801 against multiple coronaviruses and its availability for oral administration show its possible usefulness as an effective antiviral against SARS-CoV-2 and other future zoonotic mutations”, say the researchers in the study published in the journal Science Translational Medicine.

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