Corona- What have we tried so far!

If you are reading this, by now Corona virus has reached a stage where it can send humanity back to the stone age. From the eastern hemisphere to the western hemisphere, nature is trying to take back what we as humans thought belongs to us. A simple micron jumped two species and reached the most destructive force on earth, which caused the world to stop in unprecedented ways. Official reports state it started from an animal market in Hubei Province of China, however people who had never gone to the market came to the hospital complaining of the same symptoms, it meant that the community spread had already started.

This virus has sent a ripple across the world which we as a generation engrossed in the social media and tech never thought would be possible.

The governments across the world is trying very hard to fight this unwelcome demon but the final battle will be a long and a hard one, it will demand a lot of sacrifice and patience. Man kind has survived the Black death, HIV, H1N1, but they have all left a scar.

What is working ?

Definitely social distancing and shutting down the economy will not work for long because that will throw the world into a recession from which the globe might not bounce back.

Trying out different drugs might just work , so here is the list.

Chloroquine Phosphate

Anti-malarial, ironically mosquiotes are yet another insects which has killed millions of people, even responsible for Zika Virus. This drug basically kills the parasite in the blood , stopping the tropical disease in its path. Its sold under the name of Arlan.

It shows the potential to fight the virus and is promising. Infact the team of Israel and Italy at the Univesity of Palermo collated the research on the drug in the treatment. In the petri dish tests the drug has been highly effective. 23 clinical trials are already on its way on patients in China, and one is planned in USA as well as South Korea.

University of Minnesota is also planning to test whether this drug which is given sometimes to treat Lupus and Arthritis can prevent the progression of COVID-19

The safety profile of the drug is well established as said by Professor Robin May from Birmingham university

The biggest advantage of this medicine is that it is cheap and easy to manufacture, so it would be fairly easy to accelerate into trials. It can work by altering the acidity of the area of cells so the virus will face problems in replicating.

Hydroxychloroquine (Malaria)

Another form of chloroquine , which is similar in structure and mechanisms can also be useful. A potent candidate.

It cleared the patients of the virus within 6 days compared to the 11 days , but the side effects like skin rashes and headaches along with diarrhea, is a problem. None of the placebo group were treated. French officials. are now planning on a larger scale trial

Lopinavir/Ritonavir (HIV)

Marketed as Kaletra and Aluvia, is given to people who have contracted the HIV virus and it is to prevent from developing AIDS. It has shown some edge into tackling the virus, because it can bind to the outer surface of Corona, and stop the infection.

This molecule belongs to the class called Protease inhibitor, which essentially sticks to an enzyme on a virus needed for reproduction. It can block the process and halt the process of infection further.

In vitro studies have revealed that Lopinavir/Ritonavir has antiviral activity against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2).

Favipiravir (flu)

An RNA polymerase inhibitor, not used by NHS, and is produced by Japanese company, Toyama Chemical

An active ingredient in a flu drug called Avigan in Japan and China. It has been reported to be used on 80 patients in the city of Wuhan. They said it sped up the recovery, reduced lung damage and did not cause any obvious side effects. It is also used to treat yellow fever.

Most of this news has come from China, but indeed the cases have gone to zero after trying various drugs. So, according to local media, patients were given this medicine and they had negative results for the virus.

Remdesivir (Ebola)

Cripples the RNA Polymerase enzyme, stops the virus. It was produced by Gilead Sciences with the intention of destroying Ebola virus. It was pushed aside when other molecules emerged.

It remained an antiviral drug with the ability to destroy the virus, but the results have been mixed. This drug is on trial on patients in China and at the university of Nebraska.

Reports on journal “Nature” say that this is effective in the control of the new pandemic. It will be assessed in humans with corona infection since the drug has established its safety.

Sarilumab (Rheumatoid arthritis)

Marketed as Kevzara and is available to be prescribed on the NHS, set to be trialed on patients in the US. Sanofi and Regeneron plan to give the medication to people to see if this works for the immune response.

Again, blocking part of the immune system which can cause the inflammation or swelling, which is over active.

Inflammation is the body’s natural response to infection but, in patients with Coronavirus, it can get out of control, making symptoms significantly worse and even trigger multiple organ failure.

The pandemics happening now, have shorter duration in between them, and they are happening more frequently. We as humans have forgotten that we share the world and not rule it. There are other species too.

Hopefully the scientific community is working day and night to curb this virus and the people all around the world are supporting them, in the age of information this is the first time we as a generation are facing this , and if it is not solved we will go back to the crisis we have not seen before.


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