Pfizer tests oral drug to prevent Covid-19

Pfizer announced the start of a large-scale study testing an oral antiviral drug for the prevention of Covid-19 in exposed individuals.

According to an announcement on September 27 by pharmaceutical company Pfizer, PF-07321332, an oral anti-nCoV drug, will be tested in the final stage on 2,660 healthy adults aged 18 years and older living in the same household with a person infected with nCoV symptom.

A person walks past Pfizer headquarters in Manhattan, New York, December 7, 2020.  Photo: Reuters

A person walks past Pfizer headquarters in Manhattan, New York, December 7, 2020. Photo: Reuters

The drug was developed to block the action of an important enzyme the virus needs to replicate and will be used with low-dose ritonavir. Ritonavir is a drug widely used to treat people living with HIV.

Pfizer said it created the oral drug so that patients “can be prescribed at the first sign of infection or as soon as they know they are exposed to the virus without needing to be hospitalized”.

The only antiviral drug licensed for use in Covid-19 patients in the US currently is Gilead Sciences’ intravenous remdesivir. This is the drug that former US President Donald Trump took with dexamethasone when he contracted nCoV last year.

“As Covid-19 continues to affect the world, we believe that dealing with the virus will require effective treatments for those who have been exposed or exposed to nCoV, immune support without vaccines were created to end infection,” said Mikael Dolsten, chief scientific officer and president of Pfizer’s Global Health Development Research.

Pfizer, one of the leading Covid-19 vaccine manufacturers, is joining rival pharmaceutical companies such as Merck & Co. and Roche Hodling AG joined the race to develop anti-nCoV drugs.

Hong Hanh (Follow Washington Examiner)

.

Leave a Comment