Drugs used to treat HIV and malaria could be used to tackle the coronavirus, according to scientists in Australia.
A team of infectious disease experts at the University of Queensland say they have seen two existing medications manage to wipe out COVID-19 infections.
Chloroquine, an anti-malarial drug, and HIV-suppressing combination lopinavir/ritonavir have both reportedly shown promising results in human tests and made the virus ‘disappear’ in infected patients.
The drugs are being tested as researchers and doctors around the world scramble to try and find a vaccine, cure or treatment for the deadly virus.
Around 170,000 people across the globe have now been infected with the coronavirus and over 6,500 have died.
After China managed to get a handle the outbreak other countries were blindsided by huge epidemics – almost 25,000 people have caught it in Italy, 8,000 in Spain and more than 5,000 apiece in Germany and France.
Queensland researcher, Professor David Paterson, said he hopes to enroll people in larger-scale pharmaceutical trials by the end of the month.