Current Trends in the Identification and Development of Antimicrobial Agents

Antiviral Drugs - in Past and Current Pandemics

Author(s): Arijit Nandi, Anwesha Das, Wei-Yu Lin and Payal Chakraborty *

Pp: 167-194 (28)

DOI: 10.2174/9789815080056123020009

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


Antiviral drug discovery and its developmental processes happen to be the need of the hour. The break-out burden of complications and mortality caused by viruses like Influenza, Ebola, MERS, SARS and presently, the subtype SARS-CoV-2 are randomly growing in an exponential arc. Under such critical circumstances, there occurs an urgent paradigm shift in the research domain where antimalarial drugs like Hydoxychloroquine were given as a prophylactic treatment to improve the condition of the patients affected by the SARS-CoV-2-COVID-19 disease. For the use of emergency purposes in this global pandemic, a ground breaking development has taken place in vaccine therapy with mRNA-based technologies by pharma giants like Pfizer- BioNTech, Moderna Inc. and AstraZeneca Plc. All three newly launched successful mRNA vaccines, like Comirnaty, mRNA-1273 and AZD1222, in their late-phase clinical trials showed an effective rate up to ~ 95%. Many alternative approaches use translational medicines and artificial intelligence tools to mitigate clinical morbidities within a given timeframe. Hence in this particular book chapter, we tried to highlight the pros and cons of all the possible antiviral drug interventions and strategies that have been implemented from the past till the present to combat several epidemics and global pandemics. At present, the occurrence of the COVID-19 pandemic imposed a greater threat and unprecedented challenge in the antiviral drug discovery platform that needs to be focused on in detail.

Keywords: Antigen, Antiviral drug interactions, Artificial Intelligence, Baltimore Classification, Convalescent Plasma, COVID-19, Immunity, Immunoglobulins, Interferons, Monoclonal antibody, Mutation, mRNAs, Receptor, Self-amplifying RNA, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), Small interfering RNA, Spike protein, Translational medicine, Vaccines, Virus life cycle.

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