An anti-COVID oral drug developed by the DRDO has been approved by the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) for emergency use as an adjunct therapy in moderate to severe coronavirus patients, the defence ministry said on Saturday. Clinical trials of the drug 2- deoxy-D-glucose (2-DG) showed that it helps in faster recovery of
hospitalised patients and reduces supplemental oxygen dependence, it said.
The approval to the drug has come at a time when India has been grappling with a record-breaking wave of coronavirus pandemic that has stretched the country’s healthcare infrastructure to its limit. “In the ongoing second COVID-19 wave, a large number of patients are facing severe oxygen dependency and need hospitalization. “The drug is expected to save precious lives due to the mechanism of operation of the drug in infected cells. This also reduces the hospital stay of COVID-19 patients,” the ministry said. It said the anti-COVID-19 therapeutic application of 2-DG drug has been developed by the Institute of Nuclear Medicine and Allied Sciences (INMAS), a leading laboratory of Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO), in collaboration with Dr Reddy’s Laboratories (DRL) in Hyderabad.