| April 27, 2021
Alongside their vaccine rollout, Pfizer is currently testing an anti-COVID pill that could offer treatment for the virus at home, The Telegraph reports.
The antiviral drug (PF-07321332) is classed as a ‘protease inhibitor’ that works to attack the main protease of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and prevent it from replicating in the nose, throat and lungs. Protease inhibitors have been used in a number of treatments, most notably in the treatment of HIV.
Pfizer is currently undergoing phase one of three of clinical trials for the pill, with 60 volunteers participating. If successful, it could be available to the public later this year.
In a statement released, Pfizer chief science officer Mikael Dolsten said people could be prescribed the pill at the “first sign of infection” before needing critical care.
“For the foreseeable future, we will expect to see continued outbreaks of COVID-19,” Pfizer’s head of medicine design Charlotte Allerton told C&EN. “And therefore, as with all viral pandemics, it’s important we have a full toolbox on how to address it.”