The first randomized clinical trial, performed by the researchers from the University of Minnesota Medical School, shows that hydroxychloroquine is not able to prevent the development of COVID-19.
The randomized placebo-controlled trial aimed to test if hydroxychloroquine could prevent COVID-19 infection in healthy persons after exposure to an individual diagnosed with COVID-19.
To study the effect of the said drug, the scientists enlisted 821 non-hospitalized adults from the US and Canada who were exposed to the novel coronavirus from someone living in their household or as a healthcare worker.
The results of the study showed that approximately 12% of people who received hydroxychloroquine developed COVID-19 versus approximately 14% of those who received the vitamin placebo (folate).
This was not a statistical difference, and even if there was a statistical difference, this would equate to treating 42 persons with hydroxychloroquine in order to prevent one infection. No further benefit to prevent infection among those who also took zinc or vitamin C was found.
A new study, performed by scientists from France, finds that even people who experienced mild symptoms of the novel coronavirus develop antibodies to it.
For their study, a team of researchers analyzed blood samples taken from 160 medics who had a mild form of COVID-19 and didn’t require hospitalization. The results of the analysis showed that 99.4% of them had antibodies to the virus 13 days after the symptoms.
Olivier Schwartz, one of the leading researchers, comments: “It is a fair assumption that the majority of individuals with mild Covid-19 generate neutralizing antibodies within a month after onset of symptoms. The neutralizing activity is present much later than the appearance of antibodies and this is encouraging.”
The largest study, led by researchers at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, US, finds that chloroquine, an antimalarial drug, not only does not help patients hospitalized with the coronavirus but, on the contrary, is associated with heart complications and an increased risk of death.
For the study, the researchers analyzed the hospital outcomes of 96,032 hospitalized patients from 671 hospitals around the world, 14,888 of whom received some form of the antimalarial treatments chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine during the 4-month course.
The study authors not only couldn’t find a benefit in people who were given the treatments compared with those patients who didn’t receive any of the combinations, but they found an increased frequency in abnormal heartbeats in those who received the medications.
In two studies, recently published in the journal Geographical Research, researchers analyzed air quality over many countries in the world and found that levels of nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter pollution over China, Western Europe, and the US has significantly decreased, but at the same time, levels of surface ozone in China have increased.
For their studies, scientists used satellite measurements of air quality over countries that became major coronavirus epicenters: China, South Korea, Italy, Spain, France, Germany, and the US. They found that levels of pollution decreased by 40% over industrial areas of China, 20% over Belgium and Germany, and 19 to 40% in various areas of the United States.
At the same time, scientists report that with a 60% reduction in nitrogen dioxide and a 35% reduction in particulate matter, secondary pollutant surface ozone, which can cause severe health issues, such as pulmonary and cardiac disease, increased by 150–200%.
Lead researcher of one of the studies Guy Brasseur, an atmospheric scientist of the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg, says: “It means that by just reducing the [nitrogen dioxide] and the particles, you won’t solve the ozone problem.”
A new study from the University of Virginia School of Medicine, US, finds that people who get infected with COVID-19 may have serious cardiovascular complications and even end up with harmed cardiovascular health due to some possible treatments of the coronavirus disease.
For the study, a team of researchers analyzed evidence from 45 studies that mentioned COVID-19 and a potential impact on cardiovascular health. They found a link between COVID-19 and myocardial injury, heart attacks, acute heart failure, abnormal heartbeats, and venous thromboembolism.
Dr. William Brady, the lead author of the study, says: “As we gain more experience with this new pathogen [SARS-CoV-2, the new coronavirus], we realize that its adverse impact extends beyond the respiratory system. We will continue to learn more about COVID-19 and the most optimal means of managing its many presentations.”
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