Tags: Coronavirus | Coronavirus Special | Health Topics | Cold/Flu | covid-19 | cats | drugs

Drug for Cats Shows Promise Against COVID-19

orange color cats cuddle up on a ball

By    |   Wednesday, 10 June 2020 04:46 PM

A drug developed to treat an abdominal infection in cats has shown promise in halting the replication of the novel coronavirus, which causes COVID-19, the South China Morning Post is reporting.

The SCMP, an English-language newspaper in Hong Kong, reported Chinese researchers published a non-peer reviewed article Sunday on preprint server bioRxiv saying computer modelling and laboratory experiments suggested the feline medication GC376 was "a relatively effective and safe drug candidate."

The revelation comes two weeks after Anivive Lifesciences, a veterinary biotechnology company in Long Beach, California, which developed GC376 in 2018, filed a request with the Food and Drug Administration to begin clinical trials as a treatment for COVID-19 in humans.

GC376 was developed to treat feline infectious peritonitis, or FIP, a disease caused by a coronavirus. It attaches itself to an enzyme in the virus and keeps it from replicating.

The computer models and lab tests performed by the Chinese researchers showed the drug binds to an enzyme called Mpro, which breaks down big proteins into amino acids. The virus uses these amino acids as building blocks. Without Mpro, the virus cannot make copies of itself.

"Published data shows that GC376 demonstrates in vitro and in vivo activity against many animal and human coronaviruses including SARS, MERS, and most recently SARS-CoV-2," Anivive Chief Medical Officer David Bruyette said in a release.

Anivive said it used artificial intelligence software to determine the possibility of using GC376 against COVID-19.

"Our research over the past few months and our experience with GC376 support the exploration of the drug as an adjunct therapy to standard of care for COVID-19 patients or for patients where standard of care may be contraindicated," the company's release said.

"Anivive remains dedicated to developing GC376 for veterinary patients but, given the current pandemic and scarcity of effective therapies, is also exploring the use of GC376 in humans to help combat COVID-19."

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Showing promise in halting the replication of COVID-19, a drug to treat an abdominal infection in cats is being developed as a possible treatment for humans, according to the South China Morning Post.
covid-19, cats, drugs, treatment, pandemic
Wednesday, 10 June 2020 04:46 PM
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