A highlight from Could a little pill help treat COVID-19?



I'm health report. Taken tayla position and journalist autonomous swan. It's friday the thirteenth of april. Two thousand twenty one and we spent a lot of time in the last few weeks and months. Norman talking about vaccines for covid. That sort of feels like our way. Out of the pandemic early in the pandemic. We talked a bit more about treatments and five has had publicity over the last couple of days about a treatment that it's working on what is it and what does it do. So you're absolutely right. They go back to. The beginning of chronic cast three hundred years ago. What the experts were saying was Vaccine is probably not going to happen. Here it's been no successful vaccines against this kind of respiratory virus. Where you're going to get your benefit is indeed from treatments. And that's where you're going to see this revolution and that hasn't happened. And just before. I get to the pfizer. One so where we got to treatment was hydroxychloroquine. Didn't work ivermectin me. Work a little bit. But it's really doubtful but steroids do work and that was shown by the british and reduce mortality by about twenty percent. Remdesivir is pretty disappointing in terms of probably just reduce hospitalization. A little bit but doesn't do an awful lot of good anti-hiv drugs didn't work and so on but this comes to the the pfizer drug is actually not that dissimilar to some anti-hiv drugs because it's called a protease inhibitor. So we're talking about appeal. And what does it actually do. So what it does is it it. It inhibits replication of the virus. Which is what protease inhibitors. That are geared towards issue as well and that's what they're aiming to do so that it attacks the specific proteases involved so pretty is an enzyme that sh- required for viruses to replicate themselves and the inhibitor inhibits that enzyme and therefore prevent replication. So that's what they're trying to do very successful in hiv to see whether or not it works with sars cov two. They do have side effects by the way with hiv So this one would have to you. The side effect profile would have to be pretty closely monitored. They can be quite expensive drugs. So that's the other side of this is what the cost would be but this would be treatment for people who have got covid nineteen presumably high risk people and it would stop the virus replicating and presumably stop infection of others. Which in fact is what happens with hiv when you get the hiv viral on dot load. Done very very low. You actually can prevent transmission and so when we hear that there's maybe a new drug advisers had a lot of success with its vaccine. People want to throw the hats in the air and celebrate but this is the in phase one clinical trial so far so this even if they accelerate the will get a lot of patients. Unfortunately because it's still covered around it's going to be quite easy to do a phase three trial. If it's safe in phase one so phase. One is grow safety So they will be able to recruit a lot of patients quite quickly the same way as they wear for vaccines so be a great thing because we are short of antiviral drugs so we have fantastic thing to get and is particularly in a world where the world is not going to be vaccinated terrifically stained anytime soon so treatment is still going to be incredibly useful. What's the timeframe for it. Then who knows. I think they're talking about moving into phase three trials quite quickly if the phase one is okay. But you're probably not going to see this being ready for approval till next year. Well let's talk about vaccines now. Because how could we deny audience a day without vaccines so this a couple of papers out. We get a lot of questions about pregnancy and risk of covid and risk of getting vaccines. And there's a couple of pipe is out recently that shed more light on this. So yeah this is a really interesting study. I one is looking at women who are pregnant and what happens to their pregnancy and to the women when they get infected with covid nineteen.

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