An Overview of Antivirals for Treating Lower Respiratory Tract Infections

  • Alicia Cruz-Jimenez Centro de Investigación y de Estudios Avanzados (Cinvestav)
  • Liliana Quintanar Centro de Investigación y de Estudios Avanzados (Cinvestav)
  • J. Armando Lujan-Montelongo Center for Research and Advanced Studies (Cinvestav) http://orcid.org/0000-0002-5651-8955
Keywords: Antivirals, viral respiratory diseases, drug repurpose, drug research

Abstract

Abstract. Covid-19 has resulted in a worldwide epidemic (pandemic) with high morbidity and mortality, which has generated efforts in various areas of research looking for safe and effective treatments to combat the virus that generates this disease: SARS-CoV-2. However, several viruses have been emerged/adapted in the last few decades, also affecting the respiratory system. According to the world health organization (WHO), lower respiratory tract infections (LRTIs) are one of the leading causes of death worldwide, and viruses are playing important roles as the cause of these infections. In contrast to the vast repertoire of antibiotics that exist to treat bacteria-caused LRTIs, there are a very few antivirals approved for the treatment of virus-caused LRTIs, whose approach consists mainly of drug reuse. This minireview deals on the main viral pathogens that cause LRTIs and some of the most relevant antivirals to counter them (available drugs and molecules in research/clinical trials), with concise comments of their mechanism of action.

 

Resumen. Covid-19 ha resultado en una epidemia mundial (pandemia) con alta morbilidad y mortalidad, lo que ha generado esfuerzos en diversas áreas de investigación en la búsqueda de tratamientos seguros y eficaces para combatir el virus que genera esta enfermedad: el SARS-CoV-2. Sin embargo, un número de virus han surgido o se han adaptado en las últimas décadas, que también afectan el sistema respiratorio. Según la Organización Mundial de la Salud (OMS), las infecciones en vías respiratorias inferiores (LRTIs, por sus siglas en inglés) son una de las principales causas de muerte a nivel mundial, siendo los virus de los principales patógenos causantes de estas infecciones. En contraste con el repertorio amplio de antibióticos que existen para tratar LRTIs causadas por bacterias, existen muy pocos antivirales aprobados para su tratamiento, cuyo enfoque consiste principalmente en la reutilización de fármacos. Este ensayo consiste en una breve revisión de los principales agentes virales que causan LRTIs y de los antivirales más relevantes para combatir los virus que las causan (tanto fármacos disponibles como moléculas en fases de investigación o clínicas), con comentarios concisos sobre su mecanismo de acción.

Author Biographies

Alicia Cruz-Jimenez, Centro de Investigación y de Estudios Avanzados (Cinvestav)

Departamento de Química.

Liliana Quintanar, Centro de Investigación y de Estudios Avanzados (Cinvestav)

Departamento de Química

J. Armando Lujan-Montelongo, Center for Research and Advanced Studies (Cinvestav)

Assitant Professor

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Published
12-27-2021
Section
Review / Overview Articles