Drug repurposing: Researchers find existing medications may
Now open: Certificate Course in Management of Covid-19 by Govt. Of Gujarat and PlexusMDKnow more...Now open: Certificate Course in Management of Covid-19 by Govt. Of Gujarat and PlexusMDKnow more...
Get authentic, real-time news that helps you fight COVID-19 better.
Install PlexusMD App for doctors. It's free.
University of New Mexico researchers who combed through a "library" of previously approved drugs believe they have identified a medication with the potential to help speed a patient's recovery from SARS-CoV-2 infection.

The gist of it is that researchers think they found a drug that is on par with remdesivir and is much cheaper. Remdesivir is a relatively new antiviral medication that has been shown to shorten hospital stays for those recovering from the novel coronavirus.

In a paper published this week in ACS Pharmacology & Translational Science researchers reported that an older antimalarial drug called amodiaquine was effective in eradicating the virus in test tube experiments.

It was one of three promising candidates identified in a process that entailed studying the molecular characteristics of about 4,000 drugs approved for human use by the FDA and other agencies. The researchers hoped to find drugs that would target known vulnerabilities in the virus.

The other two drugs—an anti-psychotic called zuclophentixol and a blood pressure medication called nebivolol also cleared the virus in the experiments, said researcher. They think any of these three drugs could be combined with remdesivir or a related antiviral drug called favipiravir to mount a more potent attack on the virus.

Combining two drugs could mean that lower doses of each could be administered, lessening the likelihood of adverse reactions, he said. Administering two drugs also makes it less likely that the virus would develop a mutation rendering it immune from the treatment.

Many compounds that show antiviral activity in a laboratory setting don't have the same effect in living organisms, authors note, so the next step is to mount clinical trials to see whether the medications work in COVID-positive patients.

The researchers used computational methods to identify candidate drugs by gauging their similarity to hydroxychloroquine, a since-discredited antimalarial medication that had been widely touted as a COVID-19 treatment. Because of molecular variations in some of the drugs, more than 6,000 combinations were assessed.

Likely candidates were tested against samples of the virus in his Biosafety Level-3 laboratory. Later, the experiments were repeated by the University of Tennessee scientists to provide independent confirmation of the findings—and they used an additional test that reveals the drugs' potency against the virus, researchers said.

Amodiaquine, first made in 1948, is on the WHO's List of Essential Medicines. It has a good safety profile and is widely used in Africa to treat malaria. Zuclophentixol has been used to treat schizophrenia since the 1970s, while nebivolol has been used for hypertension since the late 1990s.

Source: https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acsptsci.0c00131
S●●●●●●a a●●●●●a and 2 other likes this
Like
Comment
Share