Can Levamisole be used in the treatment of COVID-19 patients presenting with diarrhea?
Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), was first identified in Wuhan, China, on Jan 7, 2020. Over the following months, the virus rapidly spread throughout the world. Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) can involve the gastrointestinal tract, including symptoms like nausea, vomiting and diarrhea and shedding of the SARS-CoV-2 in feces. Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) protein, which has been proven to be a cell receptor for SARS-CoV-2, is expressed in the glandular cells of gastric, duodenal, and rectal epithelia, supporting the entry of SARS-CoV-2 into the host cells. According to the literature, rates of COVID-19 patients reporting diarrhea were between 7 - 14%. Diarrhea in the course of COVID-19 disease can cause dehydration and hospitalization. Although no antiviral drug was specifically designed for the treatment of diarrhea, several molecules could have beneficial effects by reducing viral replication. In this letter, we discussed the Levamisole, which is an anthelmintic agent with immunomodulatory effects, could be used effectively both for antiviral therapy and especially in COVID-19 patients with diarrhea.
Copyright (c) 2020 Oğuz Abdullah Uyaroğlu, Gülay Sain Güven, İbrahim Güllü
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