How Remdesivir Works to Fight COVID-19 Inside the Body

On May 1, the U.S Food and Drug Administration issued an emergency-use authorization of remdesivir, an experimental anti-viral drug. With this clearance, doctors in the U.S. are now allowed to use the drug to treat patients with severe cases of COVID-19. Remdesivir isn’t new. It was initially developed to treat Ebola and was also tested in the lab against SARS and MERS—two other coronaviruses that infect humans much like the virus that causes COVID-19. It never made it to the approval stage for those uses, but over the last four months, scientists desperate for options to help mitigate the coronavirus pandemic have been looking towards old drugs that could be repurposed. Remdesivir has in that time traveled an unprecedented path to regulatory approval, becoming one of the most promising therapies against COVID-19 to date. Remdesivir isn’t a vaccine, and so it can’t prevent infection; instead, it works by attacking the virus once it is already spreading inside the body. Here is a look at how the COVID-19 virus propagates in the human body, and how the drug puts the brakes on that process. STEP 1: Virus enters a cell Viruses can’t multiply without using a cell’s protein-making machinery. So they first need to gain entry into a healthy cell. Coronaviruses, like the one that causes COVID-19, have a shell of spiky proteins that allow them to bind to cells. STEP 2: Virus releases genetic code The virus fuses with the cell and, once inside, rel...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized COVID-19 Source Type: news

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This study showed that a five-day regimen is as effective as 10 days–that’s important, doctors say, since it could mean shorter stays in the hospital, which could alleviate some of the burden on the health care system. “Of course we will have to wait for the final review of all the data, but it would be very nice to have an anti-viral that’s efficacious in this terrible illness,” says Dr. Aruna Subramanian, a clinical professor of medicine at Stanford and an investigator on the study. “At least we know that we can help patients with this, and that’s really the bottom line.” T...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized COVID-19 feature Magazine Source Type: news
Effective treatments for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) are urgently needed to control this current pandemic, caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). Replication of SARS-CoV-2 depends on the viral RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp), which is the likely target of the investigational nucleotide analogue remdesivir (RDV). RDV shows broad-spectrum antiviral activity against RNA viruses, and previous studies with RdRps from Ebola virus and Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) have revealed that delayed chain termination is RDV's plausible mechanism of action. Here, we exp...
Source: Journal of Biological Chemistry - Category: Chemistry Authors: Tags: Editors ' Picks Source Type: research
Gilead, a California-based biopharmaceutical company, released two encouraging reports about remdesivir, an experimental drug that is being tested as a COVID-19 treatment. In one statement, the company said that a large study of remdesivir “met its primary endpoint”: meaning, in this case, that the researchers have concluded that hospitalized patients taking the drug appear to improve faster than patients given a placebo. The study is run by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the U.S. National Institutes of Health and involves severe patients at multiple centers across th...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized COVID-19 Source Type: news
In the coronavirus era, a host of epidemiological terms have entered common public use. There’s the now-ubiquitous “social distancing,” and the newly politicized “flatten the curve.” And as states and local governments seek a way out of lockdowns that have brought their economies to a near-standstill, “contact tracing” has made its way into everyday conversation as well. But what exactly is contact tracing, and how can it help society battle the COVID-19 epidemic? Here, the basics of the time-tested public health strategy, and the hopes for its use in the coronavirus pandemic: Wh...
Source: TIME: Science - Category: Science Authors: Tags: Uncategorized COVID-19 UnitedWeRise20Disaster Source Type: news
Authors: Sahu KK, Mishra AK, Lal A Abstract With each passing day, more cases of Coronavirus disease (COVID-2019) are being detected and unfortunately the fear of novel corona virus 2019 (2019-nCoV) becoming a pandemic disease has come true. Constant efforts at individual, national, and international level are being made in order to understand the genomics, hosts, modes of transmission and epidemiological link of nCoV-2019. As of now, whole genome sequence of the newly discovered coronavirus has already been decoded. Genomic characterization nCoV-2019 have shown close homology with bat-derived severe acute respirat...
Source: Monaldi Archives for Chest Disease - Category: Respiratory Medicine Tags: Monaldi Arch Chest Dis Source Type: research
In early April, about four months after a new, highly infectious coronavirus was first identified in China, an international group of scientists reported encouraging results from a study of an experimental drug for treating the viral disease known as COVID-19. It was a small study, reported in the New England Journal of Medicine, but showed that remdesivir, an unapproved drug that was originally developed to fight Ebola, helped 68% of patients with severe breathing problems due to COVID-19 to improve; 60% of those who relied on a ventilator to breathe and took the drug were able to wean themselves off the machines after 18...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized COVID-19 Source Type: news
Last year, when I visited the town of Beni, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), people did not shake hands. Bottles of disinfectant and buckets of chlorinated water were at the entrance of every business. Misinformation spread across social networks and on news-sites, and treatment centers in the northeastern province of North Kivu were being attacked by armed militias. At the time, Beni was one of the centers of a devastating Ebola outbreak, the second most deadly in world history. According to the World Health Organization, almost 3,500 people were sickened by the virus, and more than 2,000 died, a case fatali...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized COVID-19 Source Type: news
This article is republished from The Conversation. Read the original article. The post Coronavirus: Ten Reasons Why You Ought Not to Panic appeared first on Inter Press Service. Excerpt: Ignacio López-Goñi is microbiologist and works in University of Navarra (Spain). The post Coronavirus: Ten Reasons Why You Ought Not to Panic appeared first on Inter Press Service.
Source: IPS Inter Press Service - Health - Category: International Medicine & Public Health Authors: Tags: Global Headlines Health Coronavirus Source Type: news
On Tuesday, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared an official name for the new coronavirus disease: COVID-19 — making sure not to reference Wuhan, the central Chinese city where the virus originated. COVID-19 stands for Corona Virus Disease 19. “Having a name matters to prevent the use of other names that can be inaccurate or stigmatizing,” said Director-General of the WHO, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. “It also gives us a standard format to use for any future coronavirus outbreaks.” The WHO referenced guidelines set in 2015 that ensure the name does not refer to a geographical location, ...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized COVID-19 onetime Source Type: news
Pandemics are perversely democratic. They’re nasty, lethal and sneaky, but they don’t discriminate. No matter your age, ethnicity, religion, gender, or nation, you’re a part of the pathogenic constituency. That shared vulnerability, and the resulting human collectivism—a universal response to a universal threat—is newly and vividly evident in the face of the now-global outbreak of the novel coronavirus known as 2019-nCoV. As of writing, there have been over 30,000 diagnosed cases and over 630 related deaths. A virus that emerged in a single city, Wuhan, China—indeed, in a single crowded ...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized 2019-nCoV Infectious Disease Source Type: news
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