COVID-19 Zydus Cadila gets emergency use approval for single dose of Virafin
New Delhi, Apr 23: Zydus Cadila on Friday said that it had recieved emergency use approval from the Drug Controller General of India for the use of Virafin Pegylated Interferon alpha-2b (PegIFN) in treating moderate COVID-19 infections.
In a filing the company said, a single dose subcutaneous regimen of the antiviral Virafin will make the treatment more convenient for the patients. When administered early on during Covid, Virafin will help patients recover faster and avoid much of the complications. Virafin will be available on the prescription of medical specialist for use in hospital/institutional setup.
Pegylated Interferon alpha-2b was originally approved for Hepatitis C. It is now being repurposed to treat COVID-19.
During the trial conducted in 20 to 25 centres across India, Zydus said that Virafin has shown lesser need for supplemental oxygen. This clearly indicates that it was able to control respiratory distress and failure which has been one of the major challenges in treating COVID-19. The drug has also shown efficacy against other viral infections.
During the trials, a higher proportion of patients administered with PegIFN arm were RT PCR negative by day 7. The drug ensures faster viral clearance and has several add-on advantages compared to other anti-viral agents, the company also said.
The fact that we are able to offer a therapy which significantly reduces viral load when given early on can help in better disease management. It comes at a much-needed time for patients and we will continue to provide them access to critical therapies in this battle against Covid-19, Sharvil Patel, the Managing Director of Cadila Healthcare said on the development