Tuesday, October 5, 2021

COVID-19: Health Canada looking into experimental drug to treat early symptoms

Global News in Canada shows the interesting news story.

As COVID-19 patients swamp intensive care units, Health Canada is reviewing the experimental pill molnupiravir, which claims to reduce the disease's worst outcomes early on.

According to drugmaker Merck, the twice a day antiviral pill reduced hospitalizations and deaths in COVID-19 patients by 50 per cent based on clinical trials. But the drug is not approved yet and still needs more review. 

Jamie Mauracher looks at what we know and don't know about the drug, and how it may help ease the health system's burden.

So-called "Molnupiravir" is an experimental antiviral drug which is orally active and was developed for the treatment of influenza. It is a prodrug of the synthetic nucleoside derivative N4-hydroxycytidine, and exerts its antiviral action through introduction of copying errors during viral RNA replication.

Merck & Co., Inc. is an American multinational pharmaceutical company headquartered in Kenilworth, New Jersey. It is named after the Merck family, which set up Merck Group in Germany in 1668.

The stock price: MRK (NYSE) US$81.60 at Oct. 5, 2021.

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