A US health advisory committee recommended to the US government, the issuance of a license to allow the emergency use of a drug developed by Merck, an American pharmaceutical company, to treat infection with the Coronavirus.
The committee, made up of independent health experts, set up by the US government, advised granting the “molnopiravir” drug, which is made in the form of tablets, an emergency use license in specific cases and for patients at high risk.
Thirteen members of the committee voted in favor of granting these tablets a license against 10 votes against, in a division that reflects the concerns that have emerged in recent days after recording a decline in the effectiveness of this drug and growing concern about its potential risks.
The opinion of this committee is considered advisory and the final decision on licensing this drug or not belongs to the US Food and Drug Agency (FDA).
Previous tests of the drug showed that it moderately reduces the possibility of severe infections that may lead to hospitalize patients, as well as the possibility of death due to the most dangerous strains such as “Delta”, “Mo” and “Gamma”, amid hopes that such drugs will also be effective against the “Omicron” mutant. “New.
On the other hand, the South African National Institute of Infectious Diseases announced that the “Omicron” mutant of the Coronavirus, which was discovered in the country, may outperform the highly contagious “Delta” mutant discovered in India.
“We were thinking what would outpace the delta mutant? That has always been the question, in terms of susceptibility to infection at least. Maybe this particular mutant is going to outpace the delta mutant? That’s always been the question,” Adrian Boren, acting executive director of the South African National Institute of Infectious Diseases, told Reuters. (Omicron) is the alternative.”
If Omicron proves more susceptible to infection than the “Delta” mutant, this could lead to a sharp rise in infections, which could put more pressure on hospitals.