A vaccine to protect us from the SARS-CoV-2 virus is hailed as the ultimate goal and tends to grab the headlines. But how are we doing when it comes to treating people who have COVID-19?
A virus uses an enzyme to replicate itself and block the immune response of the host. Get in the way of that process and you have one way to treat people who have COVID-19. With an effective therapy, we could manage the pandemic by keeping patients out of the hospital and have them healthy and back on their feet quickly.
Dev Sidhu is a professor of Molecular Genetics at the University of Toronto. He received funding through the Canadian Institutes of Health rapid response program. He believes that developing antiviral compounds and preventing COVID-19 from escalating in patients can be done more quickly than the development of a vaccine. His team is collaborating with other researchers in Canada and the U.S., and is aiming for a clinical trial in several locations around the world by September.
He talked with freelance broadcaster Don Hill about the project, and how therapeutic strategies can keep the virus in check.