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10,000 doses of DRDO's 2-DG drug for Covid treatment to be released by Saturday

India Today logo India Today 14-05-2021 Manjeet Negi
text, letter: 10,000 doses of DRDO’s 2-DG drug for Covid treatment to be released by Saturday 10,000 doses of DRDO’s 2-DG drug for Covid treatment to be released by Saturday

After the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) granted emergency use authorisation to the Defence Research and Development Organisation's 2-DG drug for treatment of Covid-19 one week ago, 10,000 doses of the drug are expected to be released by Saturday.

Production of the 2-deoxy-D-glucose (2-DG) drug on a large-scale will start soon in Hyderabad and at other centres too. The drug has been developed by DRDO's Institute of Nuclear Medicine and Allied Sciences (INMAS) in collaboration with Hyderabad-based Dr Reddy's Laboratories.

How does the drug work?

The drug operates on the principle of 'cheat the cheater', said an official.

"Any virus, once inside the body, makes its own copies by cheating human cells and takes their protein to multiply itself. The thought process by Indian scientists was simple.

"For every doubling of virus cell, it needs energy (glucose). So, the medicine is simply a 'pseudo' glucose which the multiplying virus intakes but actually, this drug renders it unable to multiply. Once rapid multiplication of the virus is halted, the patient's antibodies can readily combat it and overpower it within hours," the official explained.

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Earlier in April this year, the DCGI granted emergency approval to a similar drug produced by pharma giant Zydus Cadila. The drug - Virafin - was shown to reduce the need for oxygen support among moderate cases of Covid-19, along with improving recovery time.

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