As the number of cases of COVID-19 is increasing worldwide, researches has been carried out rigorously across the globe to curb this inflection to some extent and providing the first line of treatment with existing drugs. A coalition of European researchers has published in the International Journal of Infection that existing approved drugs can help in combating new viruses and help the patients to survive through viral infections.
According to WHO, the coronavirus has symptoms like fever, runny nose, sore throat and cough in the beginning. In severe cases, for some people, it can lead to pneumonia or breathing problems. It can be even fatal if initial precautions are ignored. More vulnerable are people with medical conditions like diabetes and heart diseases.
Can drug repurposing help?
Drug repurposing (Drug repositioning, re-profiling, etc.) is the use of an approved drug for the treatment of another disease by generating additional value. Drug repurposing can be a good option until some treatment or vaccine for COVID -19 is discovered. Many such potential drugs are under testing to see their effect on overcoming the menace of coronavirus. Some of the approved drugs include Teicoplanin, Oritavancin, Dalbavancin, and Monensin, which has shown efficient response in curbing the infectious coronavirus symptoms in the laboratory.
Is drug repurposing a good option?
As the task of drug repurposing is to take out additional value from already approved drugs, the drug development details, chemical synthesis process, manufacturing process and information regarding different phases of clinical testing are already known. Moreover, they have translational opportunities such as the high probability of success to market compared with developing new drugs or vaccines and significantly reduced cost and timeline to clinical availability.
Development of BSSAs (Broad Spectrum Antiviral Agents)
Broad-Spectrum Antiviral Agents are the drugs that target viruses from two or more different viral families. Nearly 120 drugs are found to be safe for human use and a database is created which is freely accessible. Thirty-one of these are a possible candidate for prophylaxis and treatment of the COVID-19 infection. Five possible drug candidate is under clinical investigation to treat the virus that causes COVID-19.
BSAAs will have a global impact in the future by decreasing morbidity and mortality from viral and other diseases, maximizing life expectancy, improving quality of life and decreasing costs of patient care. As no concrete treatment is there in place to cure COVID-19, the mentioned discoveries and researches portray hope as a potential step towards overcoming achieving victory against COVID-19.