Possible COVID-19 drug identified by Australian scientists
Australian scientists found that an anti-parasitic drug already available around the world can kill SARS-CoV-2, the virus which causes COVID-19, within 48 hours. A collaborative study led by the Monash University’s Biomedicine Discovery Institute and the Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity, a joint venture of the University of Melbourne and Royal Melbourne Hospital, has shown that a single dose of the drug, Ivermectin, could stop the virus growing in cell culture by eradicating all genetic information within two days.
The research team conducted laboratory tests to analyze the effect of Ivermectin on coronavirus-infected cells. Scientists found that the drug reduced COVID-19 viral RNA present in the cell culture by 93 percent after 24 hours and by 99 percent after 48 hours.
“By 48th hour, this effect increased to a 5000-fold reduction of viral RNA in Ivermectin-treated compared to control samples, indicating that Ivermectin treatment resulted in the effective loss of essentially all viral material by 48 hours,” the research paper says.
Scientists also didn’t identify any toxicity of Ivermectin in either the sample wells or in parallel tested drug alone samples.
The published research says that the development of an effective anti-viral treatment for SARS-CoV-2, if given to patients early on, could limit their viral load, stop the disease progressing and prevent human-to-human transmission.