Drugs & Pharmaceuticals

Given the proliferation of claims about the health benefits of marijuana – especially following its decriminalization – it should come as no surprise that cannabis-based chemicals are being evaluated as potential COVID therapies. Two of them, CBGA and CBDA, have been found to bind to the infamous viral spikes and inhibit the replication of COVID. Do these drugs have what it takes to make a useful drug? Read on.
Patients and their doctors have voted with their scripts. Overwhelmingly, they are choosing Pfizer's Paxlovid and rejecting Merck's molnupiravir. So much so that when Paxlovid is unavailable (which is most of the time) many don't even bother to try the other option. Surprising?
Finally, there are antiviral drugs that will keep people with COVID out of the hospital (and the morgue). But, good luck getting a prescription if you should need it. The FDA has pretty much guaranteed that this will be almost impossible. Here's why.
All of a sudden we have two (provisionally) FDA-approved COVID antivirals, which will be in pharmacies soon. They are quite different. Which is best for you?
We are fortunate enough that there is now an FDA-approved drug called Paxlovid, which does an incredible job of keeping COVID patients out of the hospital (or morgue). Yet NBCNews.com chose a sensationalist, scary headline about the drug as its lead health story of the day. Really lousy journalism.
It was pretty much a forgone conclusion, but the FDA's decision to grant an Emergency Use Authorization to Pfizer's COVID drug, Paxlovid, could mark the turning point in our battle against the virus. Here's the story that you won't find anywhere in the press.
We need the industry to respond to AMR the way it responded to Covid. For that, we need a government intervention to fix the broken antibiotics market - the Pasteur Act.
Placebos have been found to be about a third as helpful as active medication across a range of diseases – cancer, not so much. How the placebo is delivered, in terms of the framing by the physician, the social media acolytes, and accolades, all are part of their effectiveness. A new article in Pain suggests placebos may be becoming even more effective.
A new rumor claims that Paxlovid, Pfizer's Covid drug, is merely a "dressed up" ivermectin molecule with little difference other than price. The term "Pfizermectin" is even being used to emphasize this. But biochemical and pharmacokinetic data say otherwise. Here are the numbers.
Remember when the term "designer drug" was used in the 1980s? One of the drugs included in that group was called 3-methylfentanyl, aka, mefentanyl. Although not widely used, it killed groups of people who tried it. Fast forward 4 decades and it's now one of the 30 fentanyl analogs that are responsible for the fentanyl crisis. And it's also one of the worst. What a difference a methyl group can make.
The answer is that patients profit the most; it’s a life-saving and life-extending drug. But the sticker price (termed wholesale acquisition cost) keeps rising. Following the money will reveal both the lack of pricing transparency, and those who are raking the greatest share of the price increases.
We're almost two years into the pandemic and there have been more than enough ups and downs to last a lifetime. But now we have a potentially big "up," because the results just came in on Pfizer's COVID drug Paxlovid—and they are nothing short of amazing. Will we finally be free of the terror of this pandemic? Maybe.