The Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences has transferred the technology of AYUSH-64, an effective drug in treating 'mild and asymptomatic' and 'mild to moderate' cases of COVID-19, to 46 companies. "Earlier, only seven companies had the drug's license, which was used for the treatment of malaria. After being found effective against the novel coronavirus infection during the pandemic outbreak, 39 new companies have been given fresh licenses, that is, the technology has been transferred to them," a statement by the Ministry of AYUSH said.
AYUSH-64 has been developed by the Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences (CCRAS), the premier institution for research in Ayurveda under the AYUSH ministry.
The drug was developed in 1980 for the treatment of malaria. During the first wave of Covid in March 2020, some scientific studies found it to be very effective in 'mild and asymptomatic' and 'mild to moderate' infection of COVID-19.
It also has properties of fighting viruses, increasing body immunity and reducing fever, thus helping patients recover quickly.
During the first wave of Covid, a clinical trial was conducted by the AYUSH ministry and the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) wherein it was revealed that AYUSH-64 is a beneficial medicine for coronavirus patients.
So far, eight clinical trials have been done in which the drug was administered on 63,000 patients quarantined at home and the drug was found beneficial. There were also five random and two single studies in eight clinical trials, where patients were given only AYUSH-64, the statement said.
Before the first wave of Covid, seven companies, including IMPCL (the manufacturing unit of AYUSH ministry), were responsible for manufacturing the drug, but now the technology has been transferred to 39 companies, taking the total number of companies to 46, it said.
The latest move of CCRAS will lead to an increase in the drug production and also make it easier to meet its demand. Till date, no case of side effects of this medicine has been reported, yet experts suggest taking it only after consulting doctors, the statement added.