Chloroquine phosphate, other drugs show activity against coronavirus

Source:Global Times Published: 2020/2/4 22:33:42

A doctor checks the CT image of a patient's lungs in Zhangzhou Municipal Hospital in Zhangzhou, southeast China's Fujian Province, Feb. 2, 2020. (Photo by Xiao Heyong/Xinhua)

Some drugs on the market have been found to show activity against the novel coronavirus, and the first batch of remdesivir developed by Gilead Sciences Inc to fight the virus will arrive in China on Tuesday afternoon for clinical trials, a Chinese official said on Tuesday.

Sun Yanrong, deputy director of the Department of Biotechnology at the Ministry of Science and Technology, said at a press conference on Tuesday that achievements have been made in selecting potentially effective drugs from a wide range that have hit the market or are in clinical trials in order to find an effective treatment for the coronavirus.

Chloroquine phosphate, favipiravir and some traditional Chinese medicines have shown effect against the coronavirus, she said.

"We are now accelerating animal testing and clinical trials. Preliminary clinical trials have shown that chloroquine phosphate is effective to some extent."

Further systemic research will be carried out, she said.

In addition, she noted at the conference that remdesivir has shown sound vitro activity in antiviral screening conducted by domestic research institutions.

Remdesivir has been used in the treatment of patients with the Ebola virus infection overseas. Though the drug hasn't completed all clinical trials overseas, it has shown relatively positive effects in research, Sun said, noting that she hopes "clinical trials will show effectiveness [in fighting the coronavirus].

After remdesivir was found to be a potentially effective drug, relevant companies trading in A-share markets saw their stocks surge. Southwest China's Chongqing-based custom-drug intermediates supplier Porton Pharma Solutions Ltd hit the daily ceiling of 10 percent, having risen to 19.07 yuan ($2.73) per share at close on Tuesday.

The company announced it has recently received business inquiries from Gilead Sciences about the supply of remdesivir intermediates, and has made full preparations to deliver products once orders are received.

Posted in: ECONOMY

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