The drug has been successfully tested on animals, said Sunney Xie, director of Peking University’s Beijing Advanced Innovation Center for Genomics

New Delhi: A laboratory in China has come up with a drug that it believes can bring the coronavirus pandemic to a halt. The drug, being tested by researchers at the prestigious Peking University, is being claimed to not only shorten the recovery time for patients but also can offer short-term immunity against the virus.

The drug has been successfully tested on animals, said director of the university’s Beijing Advanced Innovation Center for Genomics, Sunney Xie. “When we injected neutralising antibodies into infected mice, after five days the viral load was reduced by a factor of 2,500,” said Xie.

“That means this potential drug has (a) therapeutic effect.” he added.

The drug in use utilises neutralising antibodies that are produced by the immunity system in humans and can prevent the virus from infecting cells.

A study on the research has also been published in a scientific journal, stating that using the antibodies provides a potential “cure” for the disease and shortens recovery time.

“Our expertise is single-cell genomics rather than immunology or virology. When we realised that the single-cell genomic approach can effectively find the neutralising antibody we were thrilled,” said Xie.

According to Xie, the drug should be ready by the end of this year and can prevent a potential outbreak this winter.

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