Iran produces anti-corona medicine “Tocilizumab”

July 27, 2020 - 19:2

TEHRAN – The drug “Tocilizumab”, confirmed to be effective in the coronavirus treatment, has been produced in Iran and will be distributed in hospitals by the next two weeks, IRNA reported on Monday.

In addition to Remdesivir, Tocilizumab has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to help partially improve COVID-19, Heydar Mohammadi, an official with Food and Drug Administration said.

This drug has not yet entered the pharmaceutical market in the country and only a limited amount of it had previously been donated to China, which is still used in hospitals, he stated.

He went on to say that the subcutaneous injection of Tocilizumab or Actemra, which is used to treat rheumatism, is now produced by an Iranian pharmaceutical company, but the intravenous injection is used for COVID-19 patients. 

Probably next week, the clinical trials and tests will be approved by the Food and Drug Administration, and it will most likely be released and distributed in the hospitals during the next two weeks, he noted.

Iran previously produced the antiviral agent remdesivir for the treatment of coronavirus patients.

So far, no effective and reliable medicine has been identified for the treatment of coronavirus in the world, but remdesivir and Actemra are prescribed for patients with this virus in Europe and the United States.

Remdesivir was studied in clinical trials for Ebola virus infections but showed limited benefit. Remdesivir has been shown to inhibit replication of other human coronaviruses associated with high morbidity in tissue cultures, including severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) in 2003 and Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in 2012.

The number of people diagnosed with coronavirus in Iran reached 293,606 on Monday, of whom 15,912 have died and 255,144 recovered so far. Over the past 24 hours, 2,434 new cases of people having the virus have been identified, and 212 died, Health Ministry spokeswoman Sima Sadat Lari said.

Currently, 3,819 patients with coronavirus are in critical condition, she added.

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