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Diphenhydramine for COVID-19

Diphenhydramine has been reported as potentially beneficial for treatment of COVID-19. We have not reviewed these studies. See all other treatments.
Ostrov et al., Highly Specific Sigma Receptor Ligands Exhibit Anti-Viral Properties in SARS-CoV-2 Infected Cells, Pathogens, doi:10.3390/pathogens10111514
(1) Background: There is a strong need for prevention and treatment strategies for COVID-19 that are not impacted by SARS-CoV-2 mutations emerging in variants of concern. After virus infection, host ER resident sigma receptors form direct interactions with non-structural SARS-CoV-2 proteins present in the replication complex. (2) Methods: In this work, highly specific sigma receptor ligands were investigated for their ability to inhibit both SARS-CoV-2 genome replication and virus induced cellular toxicity. This study found antiviral activity associated with agonism of the sigma-1 receptor (e.g., SA4503), ligation of the sigma-2 receptor (e.g., CM398), and a combination of the two pathways (e.g., AZ66). (3) Results: Intermolecular contacts between these ligands and sigma receptors were identified by structural modeling. (4) Conclusions: Sigma receptor ligands and drugs with off-target sigma receptor binding characteristics were effective at inhibiting SARS-CoV-2 infection in primate and human cells, representing a potential therapeutic avenue for COVID-19 prevention and treatment.
Berkowitz et al., Sigma Receptor Ligands Prevent COVID Mortality In Vivo: Implications for Future Therapeutics, International Journal of Molecular Sciences, doi:10.3390/ijms242115718
The emergence of lethal coronaviruses follows a periodic pattern which suggests a recurring cycle of outbreaks. It remains uncertain as to when the next lethal coronavirus will emerge, though its eventual emergence appears to be inevitable. New mutations in evolving SARS-CoV-2 variants have provided resistance to current antiviral drugs, monoclonal antibodies, and vaccines, reducing their therapeutic efficacy. This underscores the urgent need to investigate alternative therapeutic approaches. Sigma receptors have been unexpectedly linked to the SARS-CoV-2 life cycle due to the direct antiviral effect of their ligands. Coronavirus-induced cell stress facilitates the formation of an ER-derived complex conducive to its replication. Sigma receptor ligands are believed to prevent the formation of this complex. Repurposing FDA-approved drugs for COVID-19 offers a timely and cost-efficient strategy to find treatments with established safety profiles. Notably, diphenhydramine, a sigma receptor ligand, is thought to counteract the virus by inhibiting the creation of ER-derived replication vesicles. Furthermore, lactoferrin, a well-characterized immunomodulatory protein, has shown antiviral efficacy against SARS-CoV-2 both in laboratory settings and in living organisms. In the present study, we aimed to explore the impact of sigma receptor ligands on SARS-CoV-2-induced mortality in ACE2-transgenic mice. We assessed the effects of an investigational antiviral drug combination comprising a sigma receptor ligand and an immunomodulatory protein. Mice treated with sigma-2 receptor ligands or diphenhydramine and lactoferrin exhibited improved survival rates and rapid rebound in mass following the SARS-CoV-2 challenge compared to mock-treated animals. Clinical translation of these findings may support the discovery of new treatment and research strategies for SARS-CoV-2.
Schake et al., An interaction-based drug discovery screen explains known SARS-CoV-2 inhibitors and predicts new compound scaffolds, Scientific Reports, doi:10.1038/s41598-023-35671-x
AbstractThe recent outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome-Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) has shown the necessity for fast and broad drug discovery methods to enable us to react quickly to novel and highly infectious diseases. A well-known SARS-CoV-2 target is the viral main 3-chymotrypsin-like cysteine protease (Mpro), known to control coronavirus replication, which is essential for the viral life cycle. Here, we applied an interaction-based drug repositioning algorithm on all protein-compound complexes available in the protein database (PDB) to identify Mpro inhibitors and potential novel compound scaffolds against SARS-CoV-2. The screen revealed a heterogeneous set of 692 potential Mpro inhibitors containing known ones such as Dasatinib, Amodiaquine, and Flavin mononucleotide, as well as so far untested chemical scaffolds. In a follow-up evaluation, we used publicly available data published almost two years after the screen to validate our results. In total, we are able to validate 17% of the top 100 predictions with publicly available data and can furthermore show that predicted compounds do cover scaffolds that are yet not associated with Mpro. Finally, we detected a potentially important binding pattern consisting of 3 hydrogen bonds with hydrogen donors of an oxyanion hole within the active side of Mpro. Overall, these results give hope that we will be better prepared for future pandemics and that drug development will become more efficient in the upcoming years.
Please send us corrections, updates, or comments. c19early involves the extraction of 100,000+ datapoints from thousands of papers. Community updates help ensure high accuracy. Vaccines and treatments are complementary. All practical, effective, and safe means should be used based on risk/benefit analysis. No treatment, vaccine, or intervention is 100% available and effective for all current and future variants. We do not provide medical advice. Before taking any medication, consult a qualified physician who can provide personalized advice and details of risks and benefits based on your medical history and situation. FLCCC and WCH provide treatment protocols.
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