Home / News / India /  DCGI gives approval to use 2-DG as adjunct therapy for Covid-19 patients

The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) has given permission for the emergency use of drug 2-deoxy-D-glucose (2-DG) as an adjunct therapy in moderate to severe Covid-19 cases, said Defence Research and Development Organisation on Saturday.

"Being a generic molecule and analogue of glucose, it can be easily produced and made available in plenty," said the DRDO in a statement.

An adjunct therapy refers to an alternative treatment that is used together with the primary treatment. Its purpose is to assist the primary treatment.

"The drug has been developed by DRDO lab Institute of Nuclear Medicine and Allied Sciences in collaboration with Dr Reddy’s Laboratories. Clinical trial have shown that this molecule helps in faster recovery of hospitalized patients and reduces supplemental oxygen dependence," the statement read.

According to DRDO, the patients treated with 2-DG showed faster symptomatic cure than Standard of Care (SoC) on various endpoints in the efficacy trends.

"A significantly favourable trend (2.5 days difference) was seen in terms of the median time to achieving normalization of specific vital signs parameters when compared to SOC," it said.

The drug comes in powder form in sachets, 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," said the DRDO.

In April 2020, during the first wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, INMAS-DRDO scientists conducted laboratory experiments of 2-DG with the help of the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB), Hyderabad.

They found that this molecule works effectively against the SARS-CoV-2 virus and inhibits viral growth.

Based on the results, the DCGI had in May 2020 permitted Phase-II clinical trial of 2-DG in Covid-19 patients.

In Phase-II trials (including dose-ranging) conducted from May to October 2020, the drug was found to be safe and showed significant improvement in the patients' recovery.

"Phase IIa was conducted in 6 hospitals and Phase IIb (dose-ranging) clinical trial was conducted at 11 hospitals all over the country. Phase-II trial was conducted on 110 patients," said the DRDO.

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