New drug candidate for the treatment of Covid-19

Olivia Miller
CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) : COVID-19 by Alissa Eckert, MS; Dan Higgins, MAM; CDC

Researchers from Kent’s School of Biosciences, the Goethe-University in Frankfurt am Main (Germany), and the Hannover Medical School (Germany) have identified a drug with the potential to provide a treatment for Covid-19.

The international team led by Professor Martin Michaelis, Dr Mark Wass (both School of Biosciences), and Professor Jindrich Cinatl (Institute of Medical Virology, Goethe-University) found that the approved protease inhibitor aprotinin displayed activity against SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes Covid-19, in concentrations that are achieved in patients. Aprotinin inhibits the entry of SARS-CoV-2 into host cells and may compensate for the loss of host cell protease inhibitors that are downregulated upon SARS-CoV-2 infection.

Aprotinin aerosols are approved in Russia for the treatment of influenza and could be readily tested for the treatment of Covid-19.

Professor Martin Michaelis said: ‘The aprotinin aerosol has been reported to be tolerated extremely well in influenza patients. Hence, it may have a particular potential to prevent severe Covid-19 disease when applied early after diagnosis.’

The study ‘Aprotinin inhibits SARS-CoV-2 replication’ (Katie-May McLaughlin, Jake McGreig, Mark Wass, Martin Michaelis – University of Kent; Denisa Bojkova, Marco Bechtel, Kevin Klann, Carla Bellinghausen, Gernot Rohde, Sandra Ciesek, Christian Münch, Jindrich Cinatl – Goethe University Frankfurt; Danny Jonigk, Peter Braubach, Hannover Medical School) has been published in the journal Cells. DOI: