Molnupiravir is an oral medication that may be used to treat Covid-19, prevent serious symptoms, and shorten infections.
What is molnupiravir and how does it work?
Molnupiravir is an oral antiviral medication that is currently being explored in clinical trials as a potential treatment for Covid-19. Molnupiravir works by causing genetic copying errors in the SARS-CoV-2 virus. This ‘lethal mutagenesis’ affects the integrity of the virus and impairs its ability to replicate and spread.
What are the benefits of Molnupiravir as Covid-19 treatment?
Molnupiravir has demonstrated several benefits against Covid-19:
Treatments may shorten the duration of infection and reduce the severity of symptoms.
Molnupiravir may also reduce the amount of time it takes for the virus to clear the body and thus produce a negative Covid test result following infection.
If administered within the first few days of infection, molnupiravir may prevent serious symptoms.
In October 2021, Merck announced that molnupiravir reduced the chance of hospitalization or death by 50% in one study, as compared to study participants who took a placebo.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Is molnupiravir FDA approved?
FDA has issued an emergency use authorization (EUA) for Merck’s molnupiravir for the treatment of mild-to-moderate coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in adults with positive results of direct SARS-CoV-2 viral testing, and who are at high risk for progression to severe COVID-19, including hospitalization or death, and for whom alternative COVID-19 treatment options authorized by the FDA are not accessible or clinically appropriate. Molnupiravir is available by prescription only and should be initiated as soon as possible after diagnosis of COVID-19 and within five days of symptom onset.