Oral Medicine Used to Treat Reduction in Blood Fat May Reduce COVID-19 Virus Infection by Up to 70%: Study

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New Delhi: An oral drug used to treat abnormal levels of fatty compounds in the blood could reduce infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus by up to 70%, according to a lab study published on August 6.

The team, led by researchers at the University of Birmingham, found that fenofibrate and its active form, fenofibric acid, can significantly reduce SARS-VOC-2 infection in human cells in the lab.

According to the researchers, the reduction in infection was achieved at drug concentrations that were safe and achievable with the regular clinical dose of fenofibrate.

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“Because fenofibrate is an oral drug that is very inexpensive and available worldwide, along with its history of clinical use and good safety profile, our data has global implications – especially in countries. low and middle income, ”said study co-author Elisa Vicenzi, of the Scientific Institute of San Raffaele in Italy, as reported by India today.

Researchers believe that if the drug passes clinical trials, it could be effective in people for whom vaccinations are not advised or appropriate, such as children, people with hyperimmune diseases, and people using immunosuppressive drugs. .

Most countries around the world, including the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the United Kingdom’s National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), have approved the use of fenofibrate, they added. .

According to the researchers, two clinical trials of the drug are currently underway in hospitalized patients with Covid-19. They are run by the University of Pennsylvania Hospital in the United States and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel.

Additional unpublished data suggests that fenofibrate is equally effective against newer variants of SARS-CoV-2, including Alpha and Beta strains, the researchers said, who added that a study on the drug’s effectiveness against the Delta variant is also in progress.

The researchers also stressed that further clinical investigations are urgently needed to determine whether fenofibrate is a possible treatment drug for SARS-CoV-2 infection.

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