Attempt to fast track some potential antiviral drugs from known drugs

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jim mcnamara
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Main Question or Discussion Point

Article being reviewed here:
https://theconversation.com/we-foun...-and-a-whole-new-way-to-fight-covid-19-136789
Journal article:
https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-020-2286-9

This is not anything we can use today, but is an intelligent way to find something to abate Covid 19, i.e., an anti-viral drug. Ones that we already know and use for another purpose. Please read the popular article, it is meant for non-biologists.

1. Evaluate all of the already known drugs, ones used and accepted for another purpose. All of these drugs have had extensive testing and are actively used today.
2. Take the few that have potential, 47 drugs, test them on green monkey cells in the lab.
3. Perform clinical trials on patients with the best one(s) from step 2.

Several have been found and have been, or are being, moved into step 3.

An interesting side note: dextromethorphan (cough syrup med) seems to encourage the virus in lab tests. They are going to evaluate whether this is a real effect before notifying clinicians to stop patients from taking the drug for a cough. Ironically one of the symptoms of Covid 19.

Sort of an "un-medicine" - one that helps the pathogen instead of the patient. Just what do not need right now.

All of this is still up in the air. We have to wait until step 3 is complete, then we can see what further steps, if any, are needed.

The real takeaway is that when you get the world's bio-scientists geared up and all pulling toward the same goal, an amazing amount of innovative research can happen.
 
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berkeman
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An interesting side note: dextromethorphan (cough syrup med) seems to encourage the virus in lab tests.
Oops. Checking our medicine cabinet now...
 
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  • #3
BillTre
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I think its in NyQuil.
 
  • #4
berkeman
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Oops. Checking our medicine cabinet now...
Looks to be pretty common. It's in both of the cough medicines we had in our cabinet. Guess we'll set these aside until we get vaccinated next month... :wink:

1588877747342.png
 
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  • #5
Laroxe
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I don't think the stuff about cough medicines is really new. There are two main types the ones that suppress coughing, dextromethorphan being the most commonly used these days and then these are expectorants like guaifenesin.
If people have a dry irritating cough a suppressant will help, but of course coughing is one of our natural defences to try and remove irritants. Expectorants are used to help loosen thick mucus and make it easier to cough up, there are loads of these. A lot of other medicines add all sorts of other drugs like antihistamines and decongestants.
In real terms none of these things are considered a treatment for anything, they are primarily for comfort, it also makes sense that drugs that suppress some of our natural defences like coughing, might be counter productive. This is one of those areas in which some simple natural products might be the best to consider, honey containing drinks can help sooth irritated throats. I say drinks because plenty of fluids is probably the best way to loosen mucus.
The all in one treatments with all sorts of drugs are probably best avoided.
 
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