Existing drugs may hold the key to curing COVID-19

Developing new drugs to treat diseases can take years or decades—time that we do not have when it comes to treating patients with COVID-19. So Northeastern researchers came up with another way to discover treatments for the disease: parsing through drugs that already exist.

And, after considering all the drugs that are currently available to patients to treat myriad other ailments, they’ve now identified four strong contenders to treat COVID-19, which the team reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on Tuesday.

“Not everybody can get a vaccine,” says Deisy Morselli Gysi, lead author of the new paper and postdoctoral researcher in the Barabási Lab at the Center for Complex Network Research at Northeastern. “A drug that can kill the virus or not allow it to reproduce would be helpful” to have in the medical toolkit.

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