Tapeworm Drug Stops Zika From Replicating In Lab: Study


Tapeworm drug stops Zika from replicating in lab: study

 PARIS, (APP - UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 29th August, 2016) - A common drug used to kill tapeworm prevented the Zika virus from replicating in lab experiments, scientists said Monday. The medicine, Nicolsamide, was previously shown to be safe for pregnant women, which may boost its rapid deployment to treat Zika infection, they reported in the journal Nature Medicine. "The findings should significantly advance current Zika virus research and have an immediate effect on the development of anti-Zika therapeutics," the team concluded. Transmitted mainly by mosquitos but also through sexual transmission, Zika can cause crippling birth defects in the foetuses of infected women. In adults, it can in rare cases lead to neurological problems such as Guillain-Barre syndrome.

To find medications that -- if found effective -- could be used quickly, the researchers scanned 6,000 compounds already approved by the US food and Drug Administration or in clinical trials. "In this sort of global health emergency, we don't have time to wait," said co-author Hongjun Song, a virologist at Johns Hopkins University. The encouraging results have yet to be reproduced outside the laboratory, the scientists cautioned. "There is no evidence yet that Nicolsamide is effective in the body," Song told AFP.

"Additional animal studies, and then human clinical trials, are necessary."

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