FDA outlines the drugs that show potential for treating COVID-19
Clinicians and researchers all over the world are working as fast as possible to find safe and effective methods to treat COVID-19. Many experts are investigating the potential of existing drugs to help speed up this process.
Researchers at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have examined the findings of every study involving COVID-19 to date.
In a review published by Frontiers, the team provides a breakdown of key immunological factors underlying the clinical stages of COVID-19 that could be targeted by existing therapeutic drugs.
“There are multiple factors involved in determining if the patient’s immune response will be insufficient or successful in combating the infection,” said study senior author Dr. Montserrat Puig.
“Our review is an overview of these factors and how they can be considered to define the context in which medications currently used for other diseases, or development of novel agents, can be utilized to prevent, ameliorate or cure COVID-19.”
During the early stage of COVID-19, many individuals have only mild symptoms and the disease resolves on its own. For others, COVID-19 turns deadly.
The infection can progress into a stage that is complicated by Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome along with severe lung inflammation and damage. Patients with severe COVID-19 are often admitted to intensive care units and require life support and ventilation.
The FDA research has produced a summary of published studies on the body’s immune response to COVID-19, as well as information acquired from studies focused on previous coronaviruses.
The experts highlight key immunological events that might tip the balance from a protective to a hyperinflammatory response that leads to life-threatening conditions.
The review also outlines the drugs that are currently available or under development that show promise for preventing and treating severe COVID-19 infection. These drugs include those that could block SARS-CoV-2 from entering into host cells, antivirals with the potential to inhibit SARS-CoV-2 replication, and therapies that can potentially improve the function of the lungs.
“Approaches to therapy in the early stage of the disease will differ from those in its severe late stage,” said Dr. Puig.
“As the results of clinical trials become available, it may become increasingly clear that there is likely no single magic bullet to resolve the disease but a combination of several interventions that target different key factors of COVID-19 may well be required.”
Dr. Puig explained that the research and data obtained from COVID-19 studies are rapidly evolving and continuously updating.
“Thus, as clearly stated in our review, the information provided is a ‘lessons learned’ to date and describes the knowledge available at the time of the publication of the review.”
“Our hope is that the information contained in our review will help professionals in COVID-19 research develop new tools and agents to better treat those at high risk of severe COVID-19.”
The study is published in the journal Frontiers in Immunology.