BEIJING: Chinese scientists are developing a new drug and believe that it has the power to stop the coronavirus pandemic. The drug is being developed at China's prestigious Peking University.
Researchers say that the drug has been successfully tested on animals. They further added that it would decrease the recovery time for patients suffering from COVID-19. Test results also showed that the drug can provide short-term immunity from the virus.
Sunney Xie, director of the university’s Beijing Advanced Innovation Center for Genomics told AFP, "The drug has been successful at the animal testing stage. When we injected neutralising antibodies into infected mice, after five days the viral load was reduced by a factor of 2,500.”
He further added that, "The drug works by generating neutralising antibodies. The hope is these neutralised antibodies can become a specialised drug that would stop the pandemic, Our expertise is single-cell genomics rather than immunology or virology. When we realised that the single-cell genomic approach can effectively find the neutralising antibody we were thrilled."
He asserted that his team is working round the clock and said that the planning for the clinical trial is underway; It will be carried out in Australia and other countries. China already has five potential coronavirus vaccines at the human trial stage. Many researchers pointed out that plasma therapy also showed very good therapeutic effects and more than 700 patients have received plasma therapy in China.
Xie said that plasma is limited in supply. He expressed hope that the new drug could be faster and more efficient way to halt the coronavirus pandemic.