BioScience Trends. 2020;14(5):318-327. (DOI: 10.5582/bst.2020.03345)

An overview of potential therapeutic agents to treat COVID-19

Dong XQ, Tian ZX, Shen CW, Zhao CR


The emerging novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19), caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS‑CoV‑2), has swept across the world and become a global threat to public health. More than 200 countries and territories worldwide are suffering from this COVID-19 pandemic. Worryingly, no specific vaccines or drugs have been approved for the prevention or treatment of COVID-19. Under the pressure of a sustained rise in the incidence and mortality of COVID-19, an unprecedented global effort is being implemented to identify effective drugs to combat the current coronavirus. As the understanding of SARS-CoV-2 virology, the underlying mechanism by which it attacks host cells, and the host response to the infection rapidly evolves, drugs are being repurposed and novel drugs are being identified and designed to target the SARS-CoV-2 pathogenesis. Presented here is a brief overview of both virus-based and host-based potential therapeutic drugs that are currently being investigated.

KEYWORDS: coronavirus, COVID-19, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, potential therapeutic agents, virus-based, host-based

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