The fast-evolving COVID-19 pandemic is posing unusual and often frustrating challenges in the search for new drugs and vaccines, forcing researchers to rework or sometimes even scrap clinical trials as the science becomes null in void and with current lockdowns still taking place in most parts of the world, study subjects are proving difficult to find. There is one drug which has continuously gained a lot of positive feedback. What is it?
Scientists have been analysing many different types of drugs for possible treatments for coronavirus.
One in which is being hailed as one of the few triumphant ones is remdesivir.
Hopes of a possible effective drug treatment for the current pandemic has risen following positive results from a recent trial.
Remdesivir was first used in Ebola patients with positive results there too.
Coronavirus update: An antiviral drug could help with COVID-19
What is remdesivir?
Remdesivir is an investigational antiviral drug that is being reported to potentially help fight against SARS-CoV 2, the virus that causes COVID-19.
It also shows activity in the lab and in animals against related coronaviruses including SARS and MERS-Co-V.
Remdesivir is an antiviral medication develoed by the American biopharmaceutical company Gilead Sciences.
A study by Science Daily looked at the effectiveness of remdesivir against a key enzyme of coronavirus which causes COVID-19.
The search for a treatment of the deadly disease is already in human trials.
The study noted: “Scientists have shown that the drug remdesivir is highly effective in stopping the replication mechanism of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.
“The finding follows closely on research demonstrating how the drug worked against the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) virus, a related coronavirus.”
Coronavirus update: Remdesivir could help with COVID-19
The announcement of remdesivir being a possible drug treatment against the deadly virus follows closely on research published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, with scientists at the University of Alberta showing the drug is highly effective in stopping the replication mechanism of COVID-19.
Chair of medical microbiology and immunology at the University of Alberta, Matthias Götte said: “We were optimistic that we would see the same results against the SARS-CoV-2 virus.
“We obtained almost identical results as we reported previously with MERS, so we see that remdesivir is a very potent inhibitor for coronavirus polymerases.
“If you target the polymerase, the virus cannot spread, so it’s a very logical target for treatment.
“These coronavirus polymerases are sloppy and they get fooled, so the inhibitor gets incorporated many times and the virus can no longer replicate.”
What is polymerase?
Polymerase is any of several enzymes which catalyse the formation of DNA or RNA from precursor substances in the presence of pre-existing DNA or RNA acting as a template.
According to numerous studies, remdesivir is a very potent inhibitor for coronavirus polymerases, demonstrating its potential for combatting COVID-19.
Source: Daily Express