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Friday, January 28, 2022

Explained: What is Molnupiravir?

An investigational drug against Covid-19; researchers have now developed a method to manufacture it faster

By: Express News Service | New Delhi |
November 4, 2021 11:44:08 am
Merck's new antiviral medication. (Merck & Co. via AP, File)

Researchers have engineered enzymes to enable faster manufacture of molnupiravir, an investigational oral antiviral being developed for the treatment of Covid-19. The study appears in ACS Central Science.

Molnupiravir works by causing viruses to make errors when copying their own RNA, introducing mutations that inhibit replication.

Manufactured by Merck, the drug was originally developed to treat influenza. It has been submitted to the US FDA for review as a Covid-19 treatment .

In India, the Optimus Group recently announced the results of phase 3 clinical trials,which found 91.5% of patients given the drug tested RT-PCR negative compared to 43% in the placebo group.

In the new study, researchers developed a three-step synthesis route, which was 70% shorter and had a seven-fold higher overall yield than the original route, the American Chemical Society said in a press release.

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