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Chloroquine, hydroxychloroquine and COVID-19: Dr. Anant Patil

M3 India Newsdesk Mar 26, 2020

Dr. Anant Patil writes on drugs chloroquine, hydroxychloroquine, and azithromycin, all three of which have been under the spotlight now, for their roles in the treatment of COVID-19.


For our comprehensive coverage and latest updates on COVID-19 click here.


Chloroquine is a well-established anti-malarial drug with anti-inflammatory action. It is also used in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and lupus erythematosus.[1] Its anti-viral role came into discussion again recently in the context of COVID-19. The antiviral action of chloroquine is suggested to be because of increase in endosomal pH and interference with the terminal glycosylation of cellular receptors of SARS-CoV. [1,2] In line with the postulated mechanism, results of in-vitro studies suggest role of chloroquine in the control of 2019-nCoV infection. [2,3]

The anti-viral and anti-inflammatory activities of chloroquine make it a promising option for the treatment of COVID-19 pneumonia. [1] A recently published systematic review also suggests that there is sufficient pre-clinical rationale and evidence on the effectiveness of chloroquine for the treatment of COVID-19 and safety from long-term clinical use in other indications. This justifies the clinical research on chloroquine in COVID-19. [4]

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