Mexico City’s mayor Claudia Sheinbaum Pardo announced that the city is participating in the clinical trials for a potential COVID-19 treatment alongside with Germany’s Max Planck Insitute, the “Salvador Zubirán” National Institute of Medical Sciences and Nutrition, the “Ignacio Chávez” National Institute of Cardiology, and the “Manuel Gea González” General Hospital, among others.
This works consists of the elaboration of two drugs against SARS-CoV-2, whose base are Artemisia Annua and Camostat Mesylate, and that has been approved by several institutions.
The protocol is currently in the testing phase and will be applied to 360 patients in Mexico City who have tested positive to COVID-19 , who are of legal age, and who have at least one comorbidity.
According to David Kershenobich Stalnikowitz, head of the “Salvador Zubirán” National Institute of Medical Sciences and Nutrition, none of the drugs have toxic secondary effects.
The clinical trial has been approved by Mexico’s Federal Commission for the Protection Against Health Risks (COFEPRIS).
The objective of the COVID-19 treatment is to inhibit the replication of the virus, prevent the hospitalization of patients, or the use of oxygen therapy.
“These two products have been tested in laboratory and have a scientific base. We joined a research clinical protocol with all the characteristics and international support under the guidance of the National Institute of Nutrition; the Health Ministry and the Health Centers are participating because it is fundamental for outpatients and we will give information with the entire scientific base,” said Sheinbaum.
For his part, David Kershenobich said that the clinical trials began on September 14 and that the drugs have been previously used to treat other diseases and have shown to be safe.
José Gotés Palazuelos, the medical director of the institute, added that the participation in the clinical trial will last for 14 days and patients will be provided with medical monitoring for 40 days; the total sample is expected to be collected within six months.
“This trial is randomized, double-blind, controlled with placebo, multicentrer, that is, several institutions are participating, that implies four branches of treatment,” he said.
Mexico City’s Health Minister Oliva López Arellano said that the invitation to apply the trial will be extended to outpatients through the Health Centers of the Iztacalco, Iztapalapa, Tláhuac, and Tlalpan boroughs.
Peter Seeberger, from the Max Planck Institute, added that the application of the treatments is also taking place in other countries and has shown an antiviral effect against other viruses .