A 5-year-old Alaska girl has taken to the internet to help others keep safe during the coronavirus outbreak, going viral with short videos instructing fellow children on how to social distance.
READ MORE: When the COVID-19 virus attacks, it turns the patient’s own cells into virus factories.
It starts at the surface of the cell, when the virus latches on to a protein that normally helps regulate the patient’s blood pressure. The cell unwittingly brings the virus inside, where the attacker unloads its cargo: instructions for making more virus.
Having no equipment of its own, the virus commandeers the cell’s machinery to make copies of its genetic code, manufacture more virus shells and deliver packaged germs to the cell surface, where they go on to infect more cells.
Drugs already on pharmacists’ shelves act on various parts of that machinery. Though they may not be intended as antiviral drugs, in the scramble to treat the rising toll of COVID-19 infections, scientists are hoping that these existing drugs might offer some help.
The search has turned up some oddball candidates. Anti-cancer drugs, heart disease medications, a drug against schizophrenia and a treatment for Parkinson’s disease have all turned up as possibilities. Testing is already under way for chloroquine, an antimalarial drug.