A report published on August 11, 2020 in the Federation of American Society of Experimental Biology (FASEB) was entitled “Rationale for the use of N-acetylcysteine in both prevention and adjuvant therapy of COVID-19.” FASEB is a lead organization in Washington, D.C. for recommending federal funding for research including the National Institutes of Health (NIH). FASEB members represent a total of greater than 80,000 scientists. The Federation also provides The FASEB Journal, a monthly scientific publication.
This was a very exciting report in the FASEB journal on the potential of the amino acid N-acetylcysteine (NAC) and COVID-19. The report said, “NAC may be proposed both in the prevention and in the therapy of COVID-19. In particular, the oral administration of NAC, at the dose of 600mg twice daily, may be proposed for preventive purposes aimed at attenuating the risk of developing COVID-19 and its severity during epidemic periods.” The conclusion of the report further says clearly, “The potential anti-COVID-19 mechanisms and properties of this thiol have to be substantiated in controlled clinical trials, some of which are now in progress!”
The Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center is where one of those clinical trials is underway, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) U.S. National Library of Medicine, ClinicalTrials.gov website, and is entitled “A study of N-acetylcysteine in Patients with COVID-19 infection.” The sponsor of this study is Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. The principal investigator is Santosha Vardhana, MD, Ph.D. Memorial Sloan Kettering and researchers are a leading cancer institution and research center in the world studying how the immune system responds to cancer, and the role of the immune system, coronavirus and COVID-19. This report was last updated June 1, 2020. The official title of the clinical trial is: “Phase II study of N-acetylcysteine in Severe or Critically Ill Patients With Refractory COVID-19 Infection,” according to the website.
Can N-acetylcysteine Fight COVID-19?
The clinical trial began on May 1, 2020 and the estimated primary completion date is May 2021. A brief summary of the study on the website says, “The study researchers think that a medication called N-acetylcysteine can fight the COVID-19 virus by boosting a type of cell in your immune system that attacks infections, by helping your immune system fight the virus. The researchers think that the infection will get better, which could allow the patient to be moved out of the critical care unit or go offa ventilator, or prevent them from moving into a critical care unit or going on a ventilator.”
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