We all desperately need good news these days, and the approval of the antiviral drug Paxlovid is quite a thing!
This approval was anticipated because given the spectacular results obtained in clinical trials, where there was a 90% reduction in the risk of serious forms (hospitalizations and death) of COVID-19, and this, without notable side effects.
< strong>New Therapy
This drug therefore adds a new therapeutic dimension in the fight against coronavirus, independent of the activity of our immune system. Vaccination remains a pillar of our approach to the virus, but the emergence of variants such as Omicron, capable of partially circumventing the immune protection offered by vaccines, has enabled the variant to infect a very large number of people. The arrival on the market of an effective antiviral molecule, which blocks infection by all variants of the coronavirus, including Omicron, therefore brings a breath of fresh air in the fight against COVID-19. Especially since this drug is administered orally, which allows greater flexibility in its use than for other drugs that absolutely must be given to patients in hospital by intravenous. However, Paxlovid must be administered within the first 5 days of infection to be effective.
Same principle as for AIDS
The success of the molecule lies in the biochemical elegance of its mechanism of action: Paxlovid was developed to specifically block an enzyme (the Mpro protease) of SARS-CoV-2, which prevents the production of proteins essential for the survival of the virus and makes it unable to replicate. It is the same principle as that of modern drugs against AIDS and hepatitis C and which have revolutionized the treatment of these diseases.
Another formidable weapon in our scientific arsenal which will allow us to win war against this virus!