A promising antiviral that can prevent COVID-19 infection

  • A promising antiviral that can prevent nCoV infection
  • Reference: https://www.pnas.org/content/117/12/6771
  • Wit and colleagues studied the effects of antiviral Remdesivir on coronavirus infection in monkeys. Remdesivir is a molecule that resembles adenosine, a building block in DNA/RNA and works by stopping the replication of viral genetic material. This drug has been shown to work against a range of viruses including Ebola virus, Coronavirus and the Nippah virus. In this study, the authors studied how monkeys responded to MERS Coronavirus (a close relative of nCoV) infection when the drug was given before or after the infection. They found that the drug was able to reduce symptoms in both cases. The effect was significant when the drug was given before infection. They then measured the amount of viral particles in the respiratory system and also checked for lesions in the lungs of all the infected monkeys. As before, when the drug was given before infection, it massively reduced viral load and lesions showing the exciting potential of this drug as a prophylactic (preventive medicine).
  • Summary by: Manoj Kumar Rathinaswamy, Graduate Student at University of Victoria, Canada.

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