In my March 22 blog post, describing each of the drugs the Chinese had been using to treat COVID-19, I mentioned the agent remsdesivir, which works by acting as a nucleotide analog of adenosine (remember the 4 letters of the language of God: ATGC, taken up into the new RNA being made by the virus which can not then be translated and direct the manufacture of new virus proteins, a slick little chemical vascectomy for Mr. Corona.  In the lab, it’s been shown to suppress the replication of a number of RNA viruses, including the coronaviruses responsible for SARS and MERS.  In late January 2020, remdesivir was administered to the first US patient to be confirmed to be infected by SARS-CoV-2, in Snohomish County, Washington, for “compassionate use” after he progressed to pneumonia. He was cured.

Well now in my own old medical school on the south side of Chicago (class of ’79), for which I never tire of showing its awesome crest

they’re deep into a trial comparing a 5-day course with a 10-day course of this drug in COVID-19 infected patients. The U of C is only one of several cooperating centers, but chose to talk about preliminary results Thursday They’ve enrolled 128 patients so far, only two have died, fever goes down rapidly and patients get out of hospital in about 6 days. The drug was developed to treat Ebola. Maybe it’ll save us from the COVID-19 that’s still hanging around

Published by rike52

I retired from the Rheumatology division of Michigan Medicine end of June '19 after 36 years there. Upon hitting Ann Arbor for the second time (I went to school here) it took me almost 8 months to meet Kathy, 17 months to buy her a house (on Harbal, where we still live), and 37 months to marry her. Kids never came, but we've been blessed with a crowd of colleagues, friends, neighbors and family that continues to grow. Lots of them are going to show up in this log eventually. Stay tuned.

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