A doctor in India examines the X-ray of a tuberculosis patient.
Photo: A doctor checks the chest X-ray of a patient in the tuberculosis (TB) department of the government-run Osmania General Hospital in Hyderabad on October 30, 2019. – Scientists said October 29 they are closing in on a vaccine for tuberculosis , the world’s deadliest infectious disease that claimed some 1.5 million lives last year. (Photo by NOAH SEELAM / AFP) (Photo by NOAH SEELAM / AFP / AFP / Getty Images
Researchers from United States identified a possible new effective antiviral treatment against covid-19according to a study led by the governmental National Institutes of Health (NIH), published in the journal Science.
Specifically, the experimental drug TEMPOL, Oral administration has shown promising results in the treatment of this disease, as suggested by the study done on cell cultures.
TEMPOL can limit the infection of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, by altering the activity of the viral enzyme called RNA replicase, which allows the new coronavirus to replicate its genome and make copies of itself once it is inside the cell.
In a statement, the NIH detailed that to carry out this research the scientists tested whether this enzyme requires iron and sulfur clusters to support its structure.
And they found that in the case of SARS-CoV-2, this enzyme needs two clusters of iron and sulfur to function optimally.
With this finding, the researchers can exploit the weaknesses of the virus, as TEMPOL can reduce these iron and sulfur clumps.
In fact, they found, thanks to cell culture experiments, that this drug can inhibit the multiplication process of the virus.
In addition, based on previous studies of this drug in animals, it is possible that the doses of the drug used in antiviral experiments can be achieved in tissues that are the primary target of the coronavirus, such as the salivary glands and the lungs.