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Current Affairs

Remdesivir: Experimental Ebola drug also cures Nipah virus

Date: 06 June 2019 Tags: Biotechnology

Scientists have reported that Remdesivir, an experimental drug used for treatment for Ebola virus has protected monkeys against infection with Nipah virus for which there is no approved vaccine or cure.

Recent Findings

In recent study it was found that this drug is effective against Nipah virus, a lethal disease and emerging pandemic threat for which there is no approved vaccine or cure. In this new study trial, eight African green monkeys were given lethal doses of Nipah virus. Half of them later got intravenous Remdesivir and all four monkeys receiving this  drug survived and the four that did not died within eight days.

About Remdesivir

It is an antiviral drug. It is also known as GS-5734. It is novel nucleotide analog prodrug, which was developed by Gilead Sciences as treatment for Ebola virus. It is found to be  effective against both Ebola virus and Nipah virus. It also has shown some effectiveness against two other pandemic threats: MERS coronavirus and Lassa fever. It is also effective against Respiratory Syncytial virus, which infects children all over the world.

Significance

If the drug gets regulatory approval for use against Nipah virus, it will help extra treatment that could be used relatively quickly. The only current treatment for Nipah virus infection is monoclonal antibody that is still experimental and it was tested during Nipah outbreak in Kerala in 2018.