The MERS virus has taken more lives in Saudi Arabia, according to a Sept. 8 Star report. Researchers have found that a new drug combo can help combat the MERS Coronavirus, though, which is obviously good news.
Right now there is no vaccine for the MERS virus, and there is no drug that specifically treats the deadly Coronavirus. So far there are 114 cases of infection with the MERS Coronavirus, and 57 deaths caused by it. This new drug cocktail reduces the severity of the infection in monkeys, which means it could be useful in treating the MERS virus symptoms in humans.
The drug combo is ribavirin and interferon alpha 2b. Researchers have been working on treating the MERS virus for a year since it first came on the scene as an infection. Darryl Falzarano, a Canadian scientist who is the lead author of the study, said,
"Everything fit together towards suggesting that treatment definitely helps lead to a better outcome than the absence of treatment."
This is really good news because the MERS virus is a scary virus, and not having any drugs to fight it with makes treating patients nearly impossible. This drug combo is just one possible option for treatment. Developing a brand new drug to fight the virus will likely take years.