Australian researchers might have found a way to get up the nose of COVID-19.
A drug called interferon, dropped into the nose once a day could protect frontline healthcare workers from contracting the virus.
The drug quite literally interferes with viral replication by boosting the immune system to protect cells from infection.
The University of Western Australia’s Associate Professor Manfred Beilharz says the nose drops, lozenges or mouth spray would only cost a few cents per dose to produce.
Professor Beilharz says a low daily dose of interferon is unlikely to have significant side effects and he’s leading the push for the drug to be trialled as an inhibitor to COVID-19.
He says research data just released by China shows that 2,000 doctors and nurses in Hubei Province who took interferon nose drops three times a day were all protected from the virus.
Now Professor Beilharz and his international colleagues are pushing for more trials of the drug.
“If we mass produced the oral low-dose of interferon and sent it off to places overwhelmed by the COVID-19 storm – USA, Brazil and the UK – and supplied it to at risk groups, that would give us a very clear indication of to what extent you will be ameliorating the problem,” he said.
(The information in this article should not be considered medical advice. Please see your medical professional for information tailored to your personal circumstances.)
Show your support for our universities as they research their way through the COVID-19 pandemic – sign the petition to #KeepItClever today.