New Zika drug proves effective in mice

In a preclinical study, an experimental antiviral drug was shown to be successful in improving the survival rates of Zika-infected mice, according to an article in Reuters.

Two doses of the BioCryst Pharmaceutical drug BCX443 were administered to immune-deficient mice infected with Zika. The study compared the survival rates of these mice with mice given placebos or an oral antiviral medication.

Seven out of eight mice that received the BCX443 standard dose survived. No mouse that was given the oral antiviral, a reduced dose of BCX443 or the placebo lived past 28 days.

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The study is part of an ongoing program run by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, which is a part of the National Institutes of Health.

Zika is a mosquito-borne virus that has displayed a strong potential connection to the neurologically debilitating birth defect microcephaly, a condition in which babies are born with abnormally small heads. A potential link between ZIka and the immune system disorder Guillain-Barré syndrome has also been suggested.

More articles on the Zika virus: 
New Zika research 'first step' in understanding virus' impact on developing fetuses  
How Google is working with UNICEF to fight Zika  
Chicago's first Zika virus case confirmed 

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