New Covid pill from Merck

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The battle against Covid-19 has been focused on vaccines, but now there is a new development that may be able to help alongside mass vaccinations. We spoke with Doctor Jun Wang from the University of Arizona about a new pill that Merck has created.

To begin the conversation host Ted Simons asked the doctor to simply explain the pill.

Wang responded, “This is an anti-viral drug candidate that has a long history. It was not actually originally developed to target or inhibit the Coronavirus, it was actually originally developed to inhibit or target a few other viruses. Later on, this molecule has also been found to inhibit a number of other viruses; for example, ebola and, most importantly, the flu virus. Actually, right before the Covid-19 pandemic, this molecule was in a clinical trial for influenza variant infection, but with the Covid-19 outbreak the company which originally developed this molecule called the ridgeback, they wanted to see if this molecule works against the Sars-Cov-2 virus or not, which is the virus that caused the Covid-19 pandemic. And the interesting thing is from the experiment and the animal studies using mice, this molecule shows good efficacy in inhibiting Sars-Cov-2.”

Dr. Jun Wang, Associate Professor University of Arizona College of Pharmacy

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