Covid-19: what you need to know about antiviral treatments, a “new weapon” mentioned by Macron

the essential During his speech, Emmanuel Macron said that new drug treatments could help fight against severe forms of Covid. What is he talking about ?

Will antiviral treatments to be taken orally soon make it possible to fight against Covid – 11? In any case, this is what Emmanuel Macron hopes. In his speech on November 9, he expressed all his hope for future treatments. “France very early on focused on research into treatments, and we were able to order it very early on, that we will benefit from a new weapon to fight against the virus with the arrival at the end of the year of the first really effective treatments against severe forms of Covid – 19 “.

Two pills to swallow

The president is probably referring to the molnupiravir pill from the American laboratory Merck and Paxlovid from Pfizer. Two swallowable pills that allow people at risk to avoid a severe form of the disease.

France has already ordered something to treat 50 patients with the pill from the Merck laboratory, but molnupiravir has yet to be validated by the European Medicines Agency. The doses “will be delivered from the last days of November or the first days of December”, recently clarified Olivier Véran, the Minister of Health.

To whom the pill will it be given?

In an interview with FranceInfo, Professor Mathieu Molimard specified the modalities of taking the drug from Merck, which should be the same as that of Pfizer: “This will be usable for patients who do not respond to vaccines, who are on immunosuppressants and who have a good chance of going to the hospital. It is not for everyone. “

How effective?

The two pills, to be swallowed to avoid serious forms of Covid – 11 have already proven their effectiveness during the test phases. Pfizer’s medicine is believed to be 50% effective in adults at high risk of developing a severe form of the disease to prevent the risk of hospitalization or death , if taken within 3 days of onset of symptoms, according to interim clinical trial results published by the company.

Molnupiravir, from the Merck laboratory, is supposed to reduce by 30% the risk of hospitalization or death of people infected and at risk of serious forms. The American and European agencies have launched an expedited evaluation of the product.

When will they be available?

Merck’s molnupiravir is already approved in the UK. British health authorities gave their approval on Thursday 4 November for its use in patients with at least one risk factor for developing a serious form

In France, the two oral antiviral treatments could arrive fairly quickly. The scientific council quoted by Le Parisien , evokes a “possible arrival in December

“. But first, French and European health agencies must validate the products. Marketing will therefore depend on the speed of the studies carried out by the agencies.

A serum soon to be authorized?

The European Medicines Agency began Monday 000 October to study the sale of the Ronapreve treatment. A treatment, developed by the American Regeneron in partnership with the Roche laboratory.

The Ronapreve, can be given to both infected and uninfected people for prevention. Unlike the two pills, its mode of administration is by injection.

In France, since the beginning of August, immunocompromised people can request “authorization for early access” to this serum. Regeneron’s anti-Covid cocktail has already been authorized in the United States and Japan.

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