New study identifies 21 existing drugs that could treat COVI
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A Nature study authored by a global team of scientists has identified 21 existing drugs that stop the replication of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

The scientists analyzed one of the world's largest collections of known drugs for their ability to block the replication of SARS-CoV-2, and reported 100 molecules with confirmed antiviral activity in laboratory tests. Of these, 21 drugs were determined to be effective at concentrations that could be safely achieved in patients. Notably, four of these compounds were found to work synergistically with remdesivir, a current standard-of-care treatment for COVID-19.

Of the 21 drugs that were effective at blocking viral replication, the scientists found:

-- 13 have previously entered clinical trials for other indications and are effective at concentrations, or doses, that could potentially be safely achieved in COVID-19 patients.
-- Two are already FDA approved: astemizole (allergies), clofazamine (leprosy), and remdesivir has received Emergency Use Authorization from the agency (COVID-19).
-- Four worked synergistically with remdesivir, including the chloroquine derivative hanfangchin A (tetrandrine), an antimalarial drug that has reached Phase 3 clinical trials.

Based on this current analysis, clofazimine, hanfangchin A, apilimod and ONO 5334 represent the best near-term options for an effective COVID-19 treatment," says researchers.

According to the scientists, the drugs were first identified by a rapid screening of more than 12,000 drugs from the ReFRAME drug repurposing collection, which they said is a comprehensive drug repurposing collection of compounds approved by the FDA for other diseases, or tested extensively for human safety.

Source: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-020-2577-1
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