Despite the need for novel, effective therapeutics for the COVID-19 pandemic, no curative regimen is yet available, therefore patients are forced to rely on supportive and nonspecific therapies. Some SARS-CoV-2 proteins, like the 3C-like protease (3CLpro) or the major protease (Mpro), have been identified as promising targets for antiviral drugs. The Mpro has major a role in protein processing as well as pathogenesis of the virus, and could be a useful therapeutic target. The antiviral drug nirmatrelvir can keep SARS-CoV-2 from replicating through inhibiting Mpro. Nirmatrelvir was combined with another HIV protease inhibitor, ritonavir, to create Paxlovid (Nirmatrelvir/Ritonavir). The metabolizing enzyme cytochrome P450 3 A is inhibited by ritonavir to lengthen the half-life of nirmatrelvir, so rintonavir acts as a pharmacological enhancer. Nirmatrelvir exhibits potent antiviral activity against current coronavirus variants, despite significant alterations in the SARS-CoV-2 viral genome. Nevertheless, there are still several unanswered questions. This review summarizes the current literature on nirmatrelvir and ritonavir efficacy in treating SARS-CoV-2 infection, and also their safety and possible side effects.

Fuente: Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy
Available online 6 February 2023, 114367