Penn Medicine Team Uncovers Several Drugs That Could Treat COVID-19

April 03, 2021

A team of Penn Medicine researchers identified nine potential new COVID-19 treatments, including three that are already approved by the Food and Drug Administration for treating other diseases. The team, whose findings were published in Cell Reports, screened thousands of existing drugs and drug-like molecules for their ability to inhibit the replication of the COVID-19-causing coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2. In contrast to many prior studies, the screens tested the molecules for anti-coronaviral activity in a variety of cell types, including human airway-lining cells that are similar to the ones principally affected in COVID-19.

Sara Cherry, PhD, a professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine and lead PI, was interviewed on KCBS Radio (San Francisco) about the three drugs, which could be rapidly tested in human volunteers and COVID-19 patients: the transplant-rejection drug cyclosporine, the cancer drug dacomitinib, and the antibiotic salinomycin.

Penn Medicine news release
Fierce Biotech article