At a medical factory in Zeewolde, a malaria drug called chloroquine is developed and stored, while experimental trials are being conducted with the aforementioned drug to see its potential impact in treating coronavirus.
Since Sunday, police cars have been guarding the facility, reports NU. An incident has occurred on the premises, yet as of now the Police hasn’t confirmed what has happened.
— Cees Steijger (@Steijger) March 23, 2020
Anti-malaria drug as a treatment for coronavirus?
Chloroquine, a drug normally used to treat malaria, has been used in China to treat severe cases of coronavirus. Researchers from KU Leuven in Belgium have also been looking in the potential benefits of using chloroquine as a treatment against the virus.
Annemie Vandamme, virologist for KU Leuven, says that there is no evidence as of now that the drug works clinically. However, the first results of its usage to treat coronavirus will soon be published from China.
In her view, chloroquine is not that powerful on its own. However, there are chances that in combinations with other drugs, chloroquine will prove to be a useful treatment of coronavirus.
Inhalers developed in Groningen
Researchers at the University of Groningen are combining two anti-malaria drugs, namely chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine. Their goal is to develop inhalers, that can then deliver the medicines straight to the lungs of the patient.
According to Eric Snijder, a virologist at Leiden University Medical Centre, it’s important that several different drugs are administered to a patient so that the virus cannot become resistant to the different combination of drugs. The virus, however, risks becoming resistant if just an individual drug is applied.
Overall, more medical trials need to be conducted before the efficacy of these drugs can be proven and administered at a societal level.
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