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Molnupiravir reduces COVID-19 symptoms, virus by day 3, data showThree new studies to be presented at the upcoming European Congress of Clinical Microbiology & Infectious Diseases (ECCMID) conference at the end of the month demonstrate benefits of the antiviral molnupiravir against COVID-19 infections, including evidence that Merck's pill reduces symptoms of the SARS-CoV-2 virus by day 3 of administration.All three studies are based on results seen in the MOVe-OUT study, which was conducted throughout 2021 to determine the drug's efficacy against COVID-19 infections.In the first study, participants were randomized and given molnupiravir or placebo within 5 days of symptom onset.

Participants in the study kept a daily record of COVID-19 symptoms for 1 month. Those who took molnupiravir saw significant reduction of symptoms by day 3 and 5, including shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, cough, fatigue, loss of smell, and loss of taste.In a second study, the antiviral pill was able to clear active SARS-CoV-2 virus equally well in immunocompromised patients, as well as those who were deemed immunocompetent.

Of the 1,433 participants in MOVe-OUT, 57 (4%) were identified as immunocompromised. Of those participants, only 2 of 25 (8%) given molnupiravir were hospitalized or died from COVID-19, compared to 8 of 32 (25%) of immunocompromised patients given a placebo.In a final study, PCR testing was used to determine viral loads from nasopharyngeal swabs collected on days 1 (baseline), 3, 5 (end-of-treatment visit), 10, 15, and 29.

Ninety-two percent of participants given the antiviral had no infectious virus in samples collected on day 3. By day 5, virus was detected in 0.0% in the molnupiravir arm of the study compared

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