Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) has granted permission for Emergency Use of 2-deoxy-D-glucose (2-DG) drug as adjunct therapy in moderate to severe COVID-19 patients. The 2-DG drug was developed by Institute of Nuclear Medicine and Allied Sciences (INMAS), a lab of Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) in collaboration with Dr Reddy’s Laboratories (DRL), Hyderabad.
The approval comes after Phase-III clinical trials conducted in November 2020 and results from administered patients aged above 65 years. Being a generic molecule and analogue of glucose, it can be easily produced and made available in plenty in the country, says DRDO.
DRDO has said that clinical trial results have shown that this molecule helps in faster recovery of hospitalised patients and reduces supplemental oxygen dependence. Higher proportion of patients treated with 2-DG showed RT-PCR negative conversion in COVID patients. The drug will be of immense benefit to the people suffering from COVID-19.
The drug comes in powder form in sachet, which is taken orally by dissolving it in water. It accumulates in the virus infected cells and prevents virus growth by stopping viral synthesis and energy production. Its selective accumulation in virally infected cells makes this drug unique.
In the ongoing second COVID-19 wave, a large number of patients are facing severe oxygen dependency and need hospitalisation. The drug is expected to save precious lives due to the mechanism of operation of the drug in infected cells. This also reduces the hospital stay of COVID-19 patients, the DRDO has said.