New York City’s coronavirus positivity rate has remained stubborn for weeks — while new cases are only slowly inching downward — even as the city continues to ramp up vaccinations, the latest data shows. The Big Apple has a COVID-19 positivity rate of 6.55 percent on a seven-day rolling average – and that figure has remained above 6 percent for several weeks, according to the latest city data.
But new virus cases have ticked down in recent days, with the city’s latest seven-day rolling average at 3,170, according to the data. And Saturday marked the first time since December that city hospital admissions for the virus dipped below 200, with 183 patients admitted with suspected COVID-19 — and 61 percent of them testing positive.
3 FDA-Approved Drugs that Combat COVID-19 in Lung Cells
Ever since the COVID-19 pandemic was declared over a year ago, researchers around the world have been searching for existing drugs that might be repurposed to fight the virus. A team led by the University of Pennsylvania is adding three candidates to the growing list of potential anti-COVID-19 candidates—medicines they believe are particularly promising because they appear to inhibit the virus in respiratory cells. Scientists at Penn’s Perelman School of Medicine screened existing drugs in several cell types, including those that line human airways, to see whether they could inhibit SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Nine were particularly effective in respiratory cells, three of which are FDA-approved: Pfizer’s lung cancer drug Vizimpro (dacomitinib), the antibiotic salinomycin and cyclosporine, which is used to prevent rejection in patients receiving organ transplants. They published their findings in the journal Cell Reports.
The team started with 3,059 compounds, 1,000 of which are FDA-approved drugs. They tested them for their potential to inhibit SARS-CoV-2 without causing toxicity. The scientists first screened all of them in kidney cells from monkeys and liver cells from people, and found 23 that were effective. They tested the 23 finalists in respiratory cells and found that nine were active in fighting the virus. This suggests that SARS-CoV-2 uses a variety of mechanisms to invade different types of cells, the researchers suggested. Some drugs may be able to interrupt that mechanism in kidney and liver cells, but not in lung cells.