A Review on Remdesivir: A Broad-spectrum Antiviral Molecule for Possible COVID-19 Treatment

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Author(s): Jabeena Khazir, Tariq Maqbool, Bilal Ahmad Mir*

Journal Name: Mini-Reviews in Medicinal Chemistry

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Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), a novel coronavirus strain and the causative agent of COVID-19 was identified to have emerged in Wuhan, China, in December 2019 [1]. This pandemic situation and magnitude of suffering has led to global effort to find out effective measures for discovery of new specific drugs and vaccines to combat this deadly disease. In addition to many initiatives to develop vaccines for protective immunity against SARS-CoV-2, some of which are at various stages of clinical trials researchers worldwide are currently using available conventional therapeutic drugs with potential to combat the disease effectively in other viral infections and it is believed that these antiviral drugs could act as a promising immediate alternative. Remdesivir (RDV), a broad-spectrum anti-viral agent, initially developed for the treatment of Ebola virus (EBOV) and known to show promising efficiency in in vitro and in vivo studies against SARS and MERS coronaviruses, is now being investigated against SARS-CoV-2. On May 1, 2020, The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for RDV to treat COVID-19 patients [2]. A number of multicentre clinical trials are on-going to check the safety and efficacy of RDV for the treatment of COVID-19. Results of published double blind, and placebo-controlled trial on RDV against SARS-CoV-2, showed that RDV administration led to faster clinical improvement in severe COVID-19 patients compared to placebo. This review highlights the available knowledge about RDV as a therapeutic drug for coronaviruses and its preclinical and clinical trials against COVID-19.

Keywords: Coronavirus, COVID-19, Remdesivir, Therapeutic molecules, Drug re-purposing, therapeutics

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(E-pub Ahead of Print)
DOI: 10.2174/1389557521666210217093004
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