Melbourne, Australia, 8 April 2020 - A team from Monash University in Melbourne has published research suggesting that ivermectin has activity against the SARS-CoV-2 virus in the laboratory setting (Antiviral Research, Friday April 3, 2020). We concur with our friends from Mectizan Donation Program who have issued a cautionary statement pointing out that while these research findings are consistent with antiviral activity of ivermectin previously reported against a range of other viruses in the laboratory setting, ivermectin has never shown antiviral activity in patients and is not approved for the treatment of any virus infection. This is because the high concentration of ivermectin needed to produce anti-viral effects in the laboratory is far beyond dosage levels approved by regulators for treatment of neglected tropical diseases humans. That amount of drug has never been and should never be tested in humans—high doses in animal models have produced serious toxicity. These preliminary laboratory findings in cells do not indicate that ivermectin will be of benefit in COVID-19.
For the full statement, visit mectizan.org.
To our knowledge, no data has been generated to show any activity of moxidectin against SARS-CoV-2. Given that moxidectin is from the same class of drugs as ivermectin, we do not anticipate that moxidectin will have clinical benefit in treating COVID-19.
The Editor-in-Chief of Antiviral Research has also published their own statement “Caution interpreting results of ivermectin study”, and notes a recent FDA warning on this issue. Read here.