Story By: Juan Fenandez Mayes, Sub-Editor: Joseph Golder, Agency: Newsflash
Doctors in Spain are hoping to create a super pill from Donald Trump’s ‘miracle’ drug – hydroxychloroquine – to protect people from contracting COVID-19 before vaccines are made available.
Bonaventura Clotet, 67, head of Infectious Diseases at the University Hospital of Trias and Pujol Brothers in the municipality of Badalona in the north-western Spanish region of Catalonia, is developing the treatment with Spanish researcher Oriol Mitja, 39.
The pair is developing a pill that would have a prophylactic effect against COVID-19.
Local media said that researchers conducted tests on two drugs, darunavir and hydroxychloroquine, but went with the latter, dubbed the Trump administration’s miracle drug, after seeing unfavourable results for darunavir.
The pill would function as a “prophylactic drug” to keep people from falling ill after being exposed to COVID-19 as vaccines won’t be available for another year, according to Clotet.
American President Donald Trump called it a “powerful drug” that has shown “some very strong signs” working against the virus. He also claimed the United States already has 29 million doses of the drug.
Clotet told Catalan newspaper ‘Ara’ that they “are working with drugs that can block the virus and therefore protect” some of the people that are “most exposed” to the virus such as medical professionals.
He added they hope to “supply a pill that blocks over 90 percent of the virus’ entry”.
The drug was reportedly administered to 3,000 people that had come into contact with the virus and are being monitored to test its ability to protect them from COVID-19.
The results of the trials are set to be announced soon, however the exact date is unclear.
Clotet told local media: “It would be fantastic to be able to take a pill which protects you, it would be a decisive step to controlling the virus.”
Clotet also said that “vaccines will be tested on mice next month” which will be “redefined” adding that “it will not be until March or April of next year” that they can “begin to be used on humans”.
Bonaventura is also head of the HIV unit in the same hospital.
Mitja conducts research at the Lihir Medical Centre located in Papua New Guinea and has expertise on poverty-related tropical diseases.
According to the latest figures from Johns Hopkins University Spain has reported 204,178 cases and 21,282 deaths caused by COVID-19 – the second-highest in cases around the world.
The ViralTab page is created by and dedicated to professional, independent freelance journalists. It is a place for us to showcase our work. When our news is sold to our media partners, we will include the link here.