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e-Journal

 

Avian Influenza (Bird Flu)
(Released July 2007)

 
  by Sujata Suri  

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The following few antiviral compounds have been recommended:

Amanatidine

This antiviral compound is only effective against influenza, though some influenza viruses are resistant. It inhibits the growth of influenza viruses in vitro and in some experimental animals; the only problem associated with it is potential toxicity, which can induce mild neurological problems like insomnia and lack of concentration. The therapeutic efficacy of amantadine in humans is unclear due to a scarcity of clinical studies, but reductions of fever or illness after one day have been observed in adults and children (Nicholson et al., 2003)

Rimantidine

This drug is approved by the FDA and has fewer side effects than amantidine. Some viruses have shown resistance linked to changes in the M2 protein. Rimantidine, like amanatidine, works by inhibiting the ion channel activity of M2 membrane proteins.

Zanamivir

This acts as a neuraminidase inhibitor that is administered by inhalation. It is also approved by the FDA for treatment of persons more than 12 years of age. Clinical studies do not show any side effects. (Influenza)

Oseltamivir

An FDA approved drug, Oseltamivir, is recommended for persons 13 years or older. No side effects are reported so far. Oseltamivir is also an inhibitor of neuraminidase.

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