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19 Jul 2021

Setting it Straight: Where are the small molecule drugs to treat COVID-19?

While we are all very aware of how quickly effective vaccines to prevent SARS-CoV-2 infection emerged, we’ve not been hearing a great deal about small molecule therapeutics directed specifically at this novel coronavirus. The public discussion so far has focused on repurposed drugs, ranging from the antimalarial Hydroxychloroquine, to Ivermectin – developed initially to treat heart worm in dogs and used very effectively to treat river blindness – to various ribonucleoside analogues. In each case, there has been some molecular rationale for going down that road, plus a lack of solid evidence re efficacy.

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