Japanese Covid antiviral can reduce symptoms and time one can test positive

The Japanese Covid antiviral can reduce the time between positive tests after infection
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According to trial results, a Covid antiviral created by Japanese researchers can reduce symptoms and the amount of days one can test positive after infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

Hokkaido University and Shionogi Pharmaceuticals collaborated on the development of the oral antiviral medication ensitrelvir. Nature said that the experiment assessed its ability to accelerate recovery on over 1,200 patients.

When compared to the control group, the oral 125-milligram ensitrelvir capsules helped remove a stuffy or runny nose, sore throat, cough, feeling hot or feverish, and low energy or exhaustion about a day earlier.

Individuals who took the tablet also tested negative for Covid 29 hours earlier than the placebo group.

The findings were reported at the Washington Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI). It has not yet been peer reviewed.

Furthermore, according to Shionogi, the drug’s producer, the experiment demonstrated that ensitrelvir has the potential to avoid extended Covid. Individuals who used the antiviral had a 14% chance of getting lengthy Covid. Individuals who did not take the medication had a 26% chance of getting long-term Covid problems.

No medicine has been proven to lower the risk of extended Covid. Just preliminary data suggests that Pfizer’s Paxlovid may have this effect.

Experts, however, are sceptical of Shionogi’s assertion and question the design of the ensitrelvir clinical trial, according to Nature. They point out that the experiment was not designed to look into the risk of extended Covid.

According to physician Eric Topol, director of the Scripps Research Translational Institute in San Diego, California, it’s unclear whether Shionogi’s definition of lengthy Covid was defined before the research began.

Because this was an exploratory phase of the study, no firm conclusions could be drawn, he stressed.

According to Simon Portsmouth, head of clinical development at Shionogi in Florham Park, New Jersey, the business was unable to specify the plan for analysing long Covid data ahead of time since long Covid was less clearly defined previously than it is now.

He claims that, while not conclusive, these findings will help shape an ongoing trial examining ensitrelvira’s influence on Covid-19 symptoms, as reported by Nature.