Posted by News Express | 10 February 2021 | 1,555 times
Researchers from Tel Aviv’s Ichilov Medical Center, Israel, have developed a new coronavirus drug that cured most volunteers who received it between three and five days.
The team at the hospital said 29 out of 30 people suffering from moderate to severe COVID-19 recovered within five days in the Phase 1 trials of the drug called EXO-C24.
They said all the volunteers also survived.
The hospital conducting the Phase 1 trial described the development as a “huge breakthrough”.
EXO-CD24 is a medication delivered directly to the lungs, to help prevent the immune system dealing with COVID-19 from overreacting and causing complications.
Prof. Nadir Arber, the researcher who runs the lab, said the preparation is inhaled once a day for a few minutes, for five days.
He said, “The preparation is directed straight to the heart of the storm – the lungs – so unlike other formulas which selectively restrain a certain cytokine, or operate widely but cause many serious side effects, EXO-CD24 is administered locally, works broadly and without side effects.”
The drug uses exosomes, tiny carrier sacs that shuttle materials between cells, to deliver a protein called CD24 to the lungs.
The protein works to help calm the immune system and prevent cytokine storm. A cytokine storm is the name given to a worsening reaction to COVID-19 that can result in multiple organ failure and death.
The risk of a cytokine storm is particularly prevalent in older and at-risk groups.
One of the researchers involved in the study, Shiran Shapira, said the protein is located on the surface of cells and has a well known and important role in regulating the immune system.
The production of treatment for coronavirus would help massively in the fight against the disease.
The drug will move to the next phases of research, for additional information on its effectiveness and safety.
EXO-CD24 , like vaccines will have to receive emergency authorization before it can be used as a COVID-19 therapy. (Daily Trust)
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