[Medscape] Common drugs affect the response of cells to the influenza virus.


Some drugs commonly used to treat chronic diseases can affect what the flu virus does to human cells, new research suggests.

In findings published in the journal Viruses, researchers have identified a drug that treats hypercholesterolemia, as well as antidepressants and antihistamines, that can change the way cells respond response to the virus.

This result could be important because people who are more likely to develop flu complications, such as older adults, are also more likely to be taking medications for chronic conditions.

Researchers used computer models for the first time to see how a group of 45 commonly used drugs might affect interactions between human cells and viruses. They then exposed human cells to the active ingredients from these drugs at non-toxic concentrations and monitored how the cells responded after infection with the influenza virus.

None of the 45 compounds prevented the virus from killing cells. Some of them seem to increase the effects of the virus, while others seem to decrease it. When certain drugs were added, the metabolism in cells and how they used their DNA after being infected with the flu changed.

The presence of several compounds markedly changed the way cells use genes involved in virus response. Of these, the researchers identified exactly one statin, used to treat high cholesterol, and another used to treat high blood pressure and heart failure. They also found the effects of two antidepressants and one antihistamine.

The authors describe their study as a “starting point” for further research into how commonly used drugs to treat chronic diseases can affect cellular responses to viral infections. They note that the study is based on only one type of human cell, one strain of the flu virus, and that their method could help refine the list of drugs to be studied.

In the meantime, people who are taking these medicines should neither stop nor change their dosage if they have the flu unless directed by their doctor. Later, however, it is possible that scientists will find out whether temporarily stopping the drug, or temporarily increasing the dose, improves a person’s ability to fight infection.

The source

Viruses: “Active Components of Commonly Prescribed Medicines Affect Influenza A Virus–Host Cell Interaction: A Pilot Study.”

Breaking news, Norwegian University of Science and Technology.

Source: Medscape

Links: https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/962775

Translated by: Tuyet Duong

The article is translated and edited by ykhoa.org – please do not reup without permission!

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