Chinese scientists ‘are using 2,000-year-old traditional remedies on patients suffering with coronavirus’ say experts
- Doctors in Wuhan testing traditional Chinese medicines to treat the coronavirus
- New pharmaceutical drugs being listed alongside ancient traditional therapies
- One remedy is shuanghuanglian, a herbal medicine made from Lian Qiao extract
- Dried fruit said to have been used to treat infections more than 2,000 years ago
Chinese health officials are resorting to testing ancient traditional remedies on patients suffering from the deadly coronavirus.
Doctors in the epicentre of the disease outbreak in Wuhan have been using Traditional Chinese Medicine combined with Western medication to try and stem the rate of people being struck down with the new illness.
Currently scientists around the world are working to develop a vaccination for the virus, recently named COVID-19, that has already killed more than 1,600.
Latest figures from Beijing today showed 68,500 cases of the illness in China and 1,665 deaths, mostly in Hubei province.
China has more than 80 running or pending clinical trials on potential treatments for coronavirus.
Medical staff attending to patients in Wuhan Fangcang hospital, a makeshift hospital to treat Covid-19 patients in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, on Friday
The latest figures from Beijing today showed 68,500 cases of coronavirus in China and 1,665 deaths, mostly in Hubei province (pictured a hospital in Wuhan)
Two clinical trials are testing whether HIV and Ebola drugs are effective at treating the symptoms.
New pharmaceutical drugs are being listed alongside traditional therapies that are thousands of years old in a public registry of China’s clinical trials.
A database of biomedical studies in China, called The Chinese Clinical Trial Registry, lists ongoing controlled trials as well as traditional medicines.
One of the traditional remedies being assessed is shuanghuanglian – a Chinese herbal medicine containing extracts from Lian Qiao.
The dried fruit is said to have been used to treat infections more than 2,000 years ago.
Around 400 people are taking part in the trial into shuanghuanglian.
Wang Hesheng, the new health commission head in Hubei province told Bloomberg that doctor’s ‘efforts have shown some good result’ in using traditional medicines..
Clinical trials for the antiviral drug Remdesivir, made by US biotech company Gilead Sciences, were approved earlier this month and the first group of patients are expected to start taking it soon.
Medical staff carrying out checks on patients in Wuhan Fangcang hospital. Two clinical trials are testing whether HIV and Ebola drugs are effective at treating the symptoms of coronavirus
The Chinese government said on Friday that a total of 1,716 health care workers had been infected with the deadly disease
The list of clinical trial drugs in China is still growing as the search for a cure continues. However, scientists are warning that only closely monitored trials should be carried out.
Soumya Swaminathan, chief scientist at the World Health Organization, warned caution over which medicines are used to treat the disease.
She said: ‘We want a scientific approach to testing traditional medicine.’
The coronavirus that emerged in central China at the end of last year has now killed more than 1,600 people and spread around the world.
The latest figures from China show there are almost 69,000 people infected in the country.
Outside mainland China, there have been about 780 infections reported in nearly 30 locations. Taiwan, the Philippines, Hong Kong and Japan have each reported one fatality, while France on Saturday announced the first death outside Asia, an elderly Chinese tourist.
Africa reported its first infection when a patient was discovered in Egypt on Friday.