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Broad-Spectrum Antiparasitic Drug Ivermectin Could Help `Cure` COVID-19

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 16 Jun 2020
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Ivermectin, a broad-spectrum antiparasitic agent that has also been shown to fight viruses, is currently being tested in a study to evaluate its effectiveness as a treatment for COVID-19.

Prof. Eli Schwartz, founder of the Center for Travel Medicine and Tropical Disease at Sheba Medical Center (Tel Hashomer, Israel), has launched a clinical trial of Ivermectin and believes that the drug could help “cure” COVID-19, according to a report by The Jerusalem Post. Schwartz believes that Ivermectin could help reduce the duration of infection in COVID-19 patients and allow them to return to work and usual business in a few days.

Schwartz told The Jerusalem Post that Ivermectin is being tested in COVID-19 patients with mild to moderate symptoms to evaluate if the drug could reduce the viral shedding period, allow the patients to test negative for coronavirus and leave isolation in just a few days. Until now, 26 people have been enrolled in the randomized, parallel assignment, double-blind quadruple mask study of 100 patients. Schwartz hopes to establish viral clearance within six days post-intervention and is also monitoring whether Ivermectin can help speed up the reduction of symptoms.

Anti-parasitic drugs have earlier been in the news for their much-touted ability to kill the SARS-CoV-2 virus. A study on Ivermectin conducted by Australian researchers in April had also showed positive results. In May, a doctor from Bangladesh had claimed that Ivermectin repurposed for the treatment of COVID-19 had helped a patient to recover completely from the infection in just four days and the anti-parasitic drug could kill the SARS-CoV-2 virus in just 48 hours.

Another anti-parasitic drug niclosamide tested on ferrets in a study by Daewoong Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (Seoul, Korea) was found to have eliminated the novel coronavirus from their lungs. According to Daewoong, its experimental anti-viral drug completely cleared up the disease in the lung tissues of ferrets and the company now plans to start human clinical trials in July with approval of the COVID-19 treatment drug expected by the end of this year.

Related Links:
Sheba Medical Center
Daewoong Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.

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