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Glenmark all geared up to study anti-viral drugs to treat COVID-19

Glenmark, a pharmaceutical company headquartered in Mumbai, is all geared up to initiate a phase-3 clinical trial to study the efficacy of a combination of two anti-viral drugs Favipiravir and Umifenovir drugs to treat coronavirus

Glenmark all geared up to study anti-viral drugs to treat COVID-19
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Glenmark, a pharmaceutical company headquartered in Mumbai, is all geared up to initiate a phase-3 clinical trial to study the efficacy of a combination of two anti-viral drugs Favipiravir and Umifenovir to treat coronavirus. The trial, which will involve 158 Indian patients, is the second trial to start in the country using Favipiravir.

The combination of the drugs will be used to assert whether the duration of viral shedding can be shortened. Viral shedding, which usually occurs before or at the onset of symptoms, means the virus is replicating inside the body and is being released into the environment. The trial, called Faith, has received approval from regulators. Favipiravir which is given orally is expected to prevent viral duplication in the body by inhibiting the enzyme that drives the replication. It is commonly used as an anti-influenza drug in Asian countries like Japan and China.

Umifenovir is also used to treat influenza A and B. However, a study published in Clinical Microbiology and Infection on April 25 found Umifenovir did not help in the quick recovery of COVID-19 patients. Those administered the drug took 18 days to test negative as opposed to 16 days that patients who were not given the drug took to test negative.

The latest study conducted by Glenmark will evaluate whether a combination of both drugs works better on moderately-ill patients when they have high viral load and early onset of symptoms. Drugmakers around the world trying to find a vaccine for a drug to treat the coronavirus which has pushed Glenmark to conduct this trial to find a potential treatment. The company has stated that it expects results by the month of July or August. About two weeks ago, Glenmark received approvals for clinical trials on Favipiravir by the drugs controller. The company has aimed to recruit 150 patients in nine government and private hospitals across the country for this, and has so far recruited 30 patients.

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