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Five-Day Course of Oral Antiviral Appears to Stop SARS-CoV-2 in Its Tracks

A single pill of the investigational drug molnupiravir taken twice a day for 5 days eliminated SARS-CoV-2 from the nasopharynx of 49 participants.

That led Carlos del Rio, MD, distinguished professor of medicine at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, to suggest a future in which a drug like molnupiravir could be taken in the first few days of symptoms to prevent severe disease, similar to Tamiflu for influenza.

"I think it's critically important," he told Medscape Medical News of the data. Emory University was involved in the trial of molnupiravir but del Rio was not part of that team. "This drug offers the first antiviral oral drug that then could be used in an outpatient setting."

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