Scientists discover a tiny molecule that could neutralize the coronavirus
Several researchers have identified a human monoclonal antibody that prevents the SARS-CoV-2 virus from infecting cultured cells, which is the first step in developing a treatment against the disease, according to the Nature. Communications magazine.
A group of scientists from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine (USA), have managed to isolate a molecule that “completely and specifically neutralizes the SARS-CoV-2 virus," which causes Covid-19, according to news agency Efe.
The results of an investigation have been published in the magazine 'Cell', reveal that the drug known as Ab8, which has been developed based on this molecule, is "very effective in preventing and treating infection by SARS-CoV-2 in mice and hamsters."
Ab8 was evaluated in conjunction with scientists from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC), and the Medical Branch of the University of Texas (UTMB) at Galveston, as well as the University of British Columbia and the University of Saskatchewan.
"Ab8 not only has potential as a therapy for Covid-19, but it could also be used to prevent people from contracting SARS-CoV-2 infections," said study co-author John Mellors, chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases from the University of Pittsburgh.
Human trials are due to start shortly.