Kenyan scientists to begin clinical trials for three potential Covid-19 drugs
London, May 6, 2020 (AltAfrica)-Kenyan scientists have announced their readiness to commence clinical trials for three drugs that can potentially treat persons infected with coronavirus, Kenyan Daily Nation newspaper reports.
The scientists say they are seeking approvals for the trials to determine if Remdesivir, an antiretroviral drug together with anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine, and Lopinavir/ritonavir, also used on HIV patients, can treat Covid-19 patients in Kenya.
One of the drugs, Remdesivir is an antiretroviral drug originally developed For Ebola treatment
Kenya’s lead investigator in the study Loice Achieng Ombajo is quoted as saying the trials are part of an international trial, though she did not mention who is sponsoring the study.
She said they are waiting for approvals from the Poisons and Pharmacies Board and the National Council of Science, Technology and Innovation.
“We’ll be conducting that [the trials] at different centres in the country to help determine if there is any drug that would work,” Dr Ombajo is quoted as saying.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) last week gave emergency approval for the drug remdesivir to be used for coronavirus treatment.
Australian researchers have also said earlier this year that the HIV-suppressing combination lopinavir/ritonavir have also been helpful in treating patients.
Chloroquine – an antimalarial drug – works in a different way and is given to people to prevent malaria infections if they are bitten by a mosquito carrying the parasite.
The drug works by salts inside them poisoning parasites and preventing them from growing inside human red blood cells.
In clinical trial a medicine is tried on human beings to determine if it is effective in treating a disease.
Kenya has reported 535 coronavirus cases and 24 deaths.