Scientists are looking into whether drugs currently approved to treat heart disease can also prevent or reduce complications from COVID-19 and help hospitalized patients recover sooner, reported The Wall Street Journal.
Treatments being evaluated include hypertension drugs, anticoagulants, statins, antiplatelets and a drug to lower triglycerides. The news source said, results from the studies, some of which may be available as early as this summer, could offer doctors a new array of drugs to treat patients infected with the coronavirus.
Several trials are testing losartan, a drug that may help prevent lung injury in COVID-19 patients by blocking the angiotensin receptor, which is tied to high blood pressure and can cause inflammation and fluid in the lungs, said Michael Puskarich of the University of Minnesota, which is enrolling patients in two losartan trials.
Researchers at the University of Hawaii are planning a clinical trial of 40 patients to test whether telmisartan, another angiotensin-receptor blocker, reduces the severity of pulmonary and cardiovascular complications from COVID-19.
Studies of other cardiovascular drugs include Amarin's plans to test whether its fish oil-derived drug Vascepa can prevent or treat SARS-CoV-2 infection and reduce the risk of cardiovascular problems in patients who sustained heart damage during their illness.
Amarin also wants to test whether the drug, first approved in 2012 to treat adults with very high levels of triglycerides, has antiviral effects.
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