The novel coronavirus that apparently originated in a Wuhan seafood market is continuing its killing spree in all nooks of the globe, and as per the latest statistics, the pandemic has claimed the lives of more than 2,07,971 people worldwide. In an attempt to contain the pandemic, a team of researchers at a New York hospital is now testing a compound found in heartburn medication to determine whether it can be used to treat COVID-19.

Will heartburn medication inhibit coronavirus replication?

Researchers at Northwell Health, a New York hospital setting is currently trialing the compound famotidine, which is present in the heartburn medication Pepcid. Initially, the trial will be conducted on 150 coronavirus patients, and researchers will try to figure out whether it will inhibit coronavirus, in the same way, certain medications restrict the replication of HIV.

Representational ImageYouTube (Left), Pixabay (Right)

Is Donald Trump the reason behind secret trials?

Kevin Tracey, a former neurosurgeon in charge of Northwell Health's research revealed that the research team had kept the news of the trial under the wraps fearing a shortage of supply. It should be noted that such a shortage of supply had happened in the past when Donald Trump named hydroxychloroquine an effective drug to treat coronavirus.

"If we talked about this to the wrong people or too soon, the drug supply would be gone. If it does work, we'll know in a few weeks," said Tracey. 

Earlier, when Trump endorsed hydroxychloroquine as a game-changer in coronavirus treatment, mass purchasing trend was triggered in the country, and soon the medication went out of stock. Later, Trump requested Indian prime minister Narendra Modi to lift the export ban of hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID-19 in the US.

Donald Trump
Donald TrumpTwitter

Researchers, during this trial, are combining famotidine along with hydroxychloroquine, an anti-malarial drug, and medical experts believe that this combination-drug therapy could prove beneficial to coronavirus patients. But that's not proven to be effective just yet. 

Recently, Donald Trump had outlandishly suggested that injecting a disinfectant into the bodies of COVID-19 patients could kill the pathogen. Shockingly, trusting the words of the president, the country reported as many as 30 cases of potential exposure to disinfectants. Trump's remarks on the usage of disinfectants to treat coronavirus received widespread negative responses from doctors, and they clarified with the utmost importance that both internal and external exposure to disinfectants is harmful to the human body. 

Questions arise over hydroxychloroquine's effectiveness

A recent study conducted by US researchers had found that hydroxychloroquine showed no benefits in treating coronavirus patients. As hydroxychloroquine failed to show the desired result, medical experts claim that coronavirus killing spree will continue until scientists succeed in developing an effective medication.

HydroxychloroquineCredit: AP

A few days back, leaked WHO documents had suggested that antiviral medication Remdesivir had flopped in its first randomized clinical trial. The report revealed that Remdesivir failed to improve patients' condition and it did not reduce the pathogen level in the bloodstream.