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India Releases Its First Anti-COVID Drug (2-DG) Developed by DRDO
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India Releases Its First Anti-COVID Drug (2-DG) Developed by DRDO

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Highlights:
  • The new oral medication 2-deoxy-D-glucose (2-DG), against SARS-CoV-2 infections is released by DRDO, India
  • The drug arrests viral replication and inhibits multiplication and energy production inside the patient body
  • The efficacy of 2-DG was surprisingly good in improving patient recovery and curing the disease without the need for supplemental oxygen and prolonged hospitalization

India's most-awaited Anti-COVID drug 2-deoxy-D-glucose, developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation, is now out to serve as an adjunct therapy in moderate to severe SARS-CoV-2 infections.

During the first wave of COVID-19, DRDO researchers found that the molecule 2-deoxy-D-glucose effectively inhibits SARS-CoV-2 viral particles. Further, Phase-II clinical trials were conducted by the DRDO and Doctor Reddy's Laboratories, Hyderabad, from May to October 2020, to test its safety and efficacy.

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The results were surprisingly, good and the time to achieve normalization for some specific vital signs was faster when compared to the patients under Standard of Care (SoC).

Finally, the results of Phase-III trials showed that a significant proportion of COVID-19 patients alleviated symptomatically. There was no need for oxygen dependence in them by Day-3 again compared with Standard of Care (SoC).
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The Phase-III trials were conducted between December 2020 to March 2021 at 27 COVID hospitals in Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka, and Tamil Nadu.

How Does Anti-COVID Drug 2-DG Work?

Currently, COVID-19 is treated with many kinds of drugs to slow down the effects of SARS-CoV-2. Steroids are extremely popular in COVID-19 treatment, which is used to treat the inflammation of inner tissues. Many antibiotics are also being used to that prevent secondary bacterial infections like pneumonia.

The limited efficacy of available antiviral medications and the dependence on an external source of oxygen are making COVID-19 more dangerous.

The new "Made-in-India" drug 2-Deoxy-D-Glucose developed by DRDO showed promising effects in controlling viral load and saving patient lives in severe cases of SARS-CoV-2 infections.

The efficacy of the drug lies in its ability to prevent viral replication. The drug molecules accumulate in the body cells infected by the virus and arrest the synthesis of viral genetic material. Meanwhile, the viral cells would become unable to produce energy and degenerate on their own.

Here are the Possible Benefits of the Drug 2-DG

The second wave of the COVID-19 is different from the first one as the need for oxygen cylinders and concentrators, risk of secondary infections, the inadequacy of medical facilities are increasing day by day. The launch of the first batch of the 2-DG drug is more like a good news for India as the nation is suffering a lot due to the deadly face of the pandemic.

The drug is a promising adjunct therapy approved for emergency use in treating patients with moderate to severe SARS-CoV-2 infection. As per the results of clinical trials, it is reported that a higher percentage of patients showed RT-PCR negative conversion after the therapy.

The drug further improves patient recovery by reducing supplemental oxygen dependence, which reduces the need for prolonged hospitalization. 2-DG comes in powder form in a sachet which is to be dissolved in water and orally taken.

Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare of India said, "Not just for India but I hope it serves in the fight against Covid, globally in the coming days. I thank and congratulate DRDO and its scientists."

Source: Medindia

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