New Delhi: India's fight against the coronavirus is going to get stronger as the country will be releasing the first batch of the anti-COVID-19 drug 2-deoxy-D-glucose (2-DG) today (May 17, 2021). It will be released by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh.
Rajnath Singh's office said that the defence minister will release the first batch via video conferencing facility at 10.30 AM.
Over 10,000 doses of the 2-DG drug are likely to be launched today.
The 2-DG drug has been developed by DRDO's Institute of Nuclear Medicine and Allied Sciences (INMAS) in collaboration with Dr Reddy`s Laboratories.
Raksha Mantri Shri @rajnathsingh will release the first batch of Anti Covid drug 2DG via video conferencing facility tomorrow at 10.30 AM. The drug has been developed by DRDO's Institute of Nuclear Medicine & Allied Sciences (INMAS) in collaboration with Dr Reddy's Laboratories.
— रक्षा मंत्री कार्यालय/ RMO India (@DefenceMinIndia) May 16, 2021
The drug reportedly comes in powder form and is taken orally by dissolving it in water.
Clinical trial results have shown that this molecule helps in faster recovery of hospitalised patients and reduces supplemental oxygen dependence and that the higher proportion of patients treated with 2-DG showed RT-PCR negative conversion in COVID-19 patients.
In April 2020, during the first wave of coronavirus, INMAS-DRDO scientists conducted laboratory experiments with the help of the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB), Hyderabad and found that this molecule works effectively against the SARS-CoV-2 virus and inhibits viral growth. Based on these results, DCGI CDSCO permitted a Phase-II clinical trial of 2-DG in COVID-19 patients in May 2020.
The DRDO, along with its industry partner DRL started clinical trials to test the safety and efficacy of the drug in COVID-19 patients. In Phase-II trials (including dose-ranging) conducted from May to October 2020, the drug was found to be safe in COVID-19 patients and showed significant improvement in their recovery. Phase IIa was conducted in six hospitals and Phase IIb (dose-ranging) clinical trial was conducted at 11 hospitals all over the country. Phase-II trial was conducted on 110 patients.
Meanwhile, India witnessed a dip in fresh COVID-19 cases but new fatalities increased between Saturday and Sunday morning. There were 3,11,170 new COVID-19 cases and 4,077 deaths in India on Sunday.
So far, the country has recorded a total of 2,46,84,077 coronavirus infections, of which, 2,07,95,335 people have recovered, while 2,70,284 have died of the fatal virus. There are still 36,18,458 active cases in India.