Scientists in China believe new drug can stop pandemic 'without vaccine'

China tests new drug that could halt pandemic'without vaccine

China tests new drug that could halt pandemic'without vaccine

A Chinese laboratory at Peking University believes it has found a drug with the power to bring COVID-19 to an end.

The outbreak was first reported in China late past year before spreading across the world, prompting an global race to find treatments and vaccines. The drug being tested by scientists at China's Peking University could not only shorten the recovery time for those infected, but even offer short-term immunity from the virus, researchers say.

Sunney Xie, who is the director of the Beijing Advanced Innovation Centre for Genomics in the University, told AFP that this drug was successful when tested on animals.

Sunney Xie said that they injected the drug into the mice and the viral load was reduced by a factor of 2500 after five days. This showed that the potential drug had a therapeutic effect.

These antibodies are typically produced by the human immune system as a barrier to stop the virus from infecting a person, and their use, claim the team, offers a potential "cure" for the disease.

He said that our expertise is single-cell genomics rather than immunology or virology.

"Prime Minister General Prayuth Chan o-cha has instructed the relevant agencies to speed up the process. hopefully, Thailand can be one of the first countries with a vaccine ready for use", he said at the COVID-19 daily briefing here today. The team is planning for clinical trials, Xie said, adding that it will be carried out in Australia and other countries as the number of cases came down in China.

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"The hope is these neutralized antibodies can become a specialized drug that would stop the pandemic", which started spreading from China in December 2019.

Besides, around five potential coronavirus vaccines are at the human trial stage in China.

The researchers believe that these antibodies can be used to develop a medication that will fight off current coronavirus infections while the world calmly waits for a vaccine to be developed, tested, and issued.

Using antibodies in drug treatments is not a new approach, and it has been successful in treating several other viruses such as HIV, Ebola and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).

He said that work is on for clinical trials.

But the new drug, developed in China, also provides protection from the virus for some time, meaning that people will not be able to get the disease for some time. It is now being tested at Peking University, and if it shows that it is safe and effective, we may not have to wait for a vaccine to feel a little safer in the midst of the pandemic.

This may offer temporary protection for medical workers for a few weeks, which Xie said they are hoping to "extend to a few months". The last time the commission reported a death was on 14 April.

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