Clinical trials on a new oral antiviral drug, Molnupiravir, from Merck and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics were stopped early because ‘the results were so convincing’ and represent a game-changer for many people worldwide who cannot have, or don’t want, the current Covid-19 vaccines.
October 1st 2021 brought a statement from Merck that its new pill to treat Covid halved the risk of hospitalisation and death when given early in the infection to high-risk people. 73 per cent of people in the study were overweight, had diabetes or were suffering heart conditions. These strong results are the first for a wave of antiviral pills from other companies such as Pfizer.
Merck will seek emergency approval from the FDA for the drug and the pills could be available within two months.
The pill has a number of benefits. It is likely much cheaper and seems more effective than the antibody treatments approved last year. Also, these monoclonal antibody drugs are not widely available globally, whereas Merck is already negotiating production agreements across the globe.
While officialdom in the USA, Australia and some countries in Europe is backing vaccines, many people (who are neither vaxers nor anti-vaxers) simply do not trust the vaccines available, both for effectiveness and/or safety reasons. Only last week a lawyer reviewing the Medicare data reported that 48,700 Medicare insured people had died within 14 days of receiving a Covid-19 vaccine. 80 million people are on Medicare, so this figure extrapolates to a figure of 200,000 across the USA. This is a long way from the official figures. The Merck pills can be provided to both vaccinated and unvaccinated alike and be taken at the first sign of a temperature.
Also, many countries cannot afford the Covid-19 vaccines, and this is complicated by the extreme care needed to be taken transportIng them, for example, at the correct temperature.
Pills do not have these issues and can be produced and distributed locally.
An alternative to ineffective vaccines?
In the USA still only 55% of people have been vaccinated and many people are now objecting to the vaccine mandates. “Give me a good, effective, long lasting vaccine, and I’ll take it. Give me a harmful vaccine that the Government has to force on people, and I won’t. “ was a popular theme last week. And this pill will only increase the resolve of the unvaccinated to wait.
Dr Robert Schafer from Stamford University who is an expert in infectious diseases hailed this vaccine as a game-changer. One that could save millions of lives.
Fauci and Biden, talking about this pill, both continued to insist that everybody should be vaccinated claiming that vaccines prevented people getting the disease, a claim known to be untrue. Highly vaccinated Singapore is currently suffering a surge in cases of Covid.
Jeff Zients, a White House Coronavirus advisor, said that their aim was to stop people getting Coronavirus in the first place and so people should be vaccinated. But, again, look at the science: Over 80% of hospitalizations in Wales, UK, are currently occurring in vaccinated people. figures around 68% have been seen in Israel. Current vaccines do NOT prevent people developing Covid. Sad but true. Reality must prevail.
The logic of ‘vaccinate to prevent Covid’ anyway was questioned by many. If this anti-viral pill could be used, as the Indian Health Service use Ivermectin, as part of a larger protocol, then far more people could catch the virus and develop Natural Immunity. In Israel, Natural Immunity his has been shown to be seven times more effective (and in some cases, 13 times more effective) at preventing Covid than the ‘waning immunity’ provided by existing vaccines. (Israel data shows 39% protection against infection after two doses of vaccine 6 months later, compared with 90% protection at the outset).
Molnupiravir Clinical Trial
The Merck Clinical Trial was stopped early because the results were so convincing. While the press release focussed on high risk patients, the trial stated that ‘Merck and Ridgeback’s Investigational oral antiviral Molnupiravir reduced the risk of hospitalization or death by approximately 50 Percent compared to a placebo for patients with mild or moderate Covid-19 in positive Interim analysis of phase 3 study’ (1).
This is a major leap forward as oral antiviral drugs hardly exist for any disease. The trial (the MOVe OUT trial) was a global Phase 3, randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind, multi-site study. Importantly, as long as Molnupiravir (Mk-4482) was given in the 5 days no deaths were observed. 40% of the patients had differing variants of the Covid virus.
35 percent of patients given the drug had an adverse event, as opposed to 40 percent of the placebo group. There is a concern on the issue of genetic mutation, however, and Merck were quick to point out that their new antiviral was ‘not capable of inducing genetic change in human cells’ but men in the trial had to agree to abstain from intercourse or use contraception. Women could not be pregnant and also had to use birth control. It is a form of RNA and is being touted for treatment and prevention.
Ivermectin vs Molnupiravir?
Merck also makes Ivermectin. A recent study from Baylor College (2) has shown that they work in different ways but are equally effective. The new drug starts working within two hours of taking it, it also lasts longer in the body than Ivermectin; it is a more potent antiviral drug. However, Ivermectin is known to respond to the spike protein coat and can accumulate in the lungs. The study even talked of Ivermectin and Molnupiravir being synergistic.
In a meta-analysis of Ivermectin studies (Ivermectin for Prevention and Treatment of Covid-19 infection by Andrew Bryant and others; June 17th 2021), reduces deaths probably by 62 per cent, and reduces transmission possibly by 86%.
However, the BBC have 2 journalists who have ‘debunked’ Ivermectin, which is regrettable as they talked about serious errors in 26 studies on Ivermectin and claimed that these poor studies were being used by anti-vaxers. In particular, they quoted a review article talking about these 26 studies. However the article does not list any one of the 26 references so we are unable to check the accuracy of their claims. This sort of journalism doesn’t even qualify as science and it is sad to see the BBC continue to lose its integrity in this way.
To date, 3.7 billion doses of Ivermectin have been used worldwide.
Ivermectin costs $10 a script and Molnupiravir is $700 per script (a 5 day course, 2 pills per day) so it’s not cheap, to quote the UK’s Dr John Campbell on You Tube. Merck will however price it according to the country’s means when purchasing.
Antiviral availability ‘massively significant’
Just 10 million pills will be made this year, but volume be be ramped up next year to produce 1.7 million ‘5-day courses’ for the USA alone, and competitors are likely to be join this highly lucrative new market.
With several other manufacturers looking to produce these Ivermectin replacements, 2022 could be the year the ‘pandemic’ turned into an ‘endemic’. Antivirals will be ‘massively significant’, according to Campbell
- Merck New release – https://www.merck.com/news/merck-and-ridgebacks-investigational-oral-antiviral-molnupiravir-reduced-the-risk-of-hospitalization-or-death-by-approximately-50-percent-compared-to-placebo-for-patients-with-mild-or-moderat/s
- Drugs shown to inhibit SARS-COV-2 in Covid-19 disease; Ajayi AAL, Dept Medicine Baylor College – https://austinpublishinggroup.com/pharmacology-therapeutics/fulltext/ajpt-v9-id1149.pdf