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Covid19 in VR: Merck’s Antiviral Molnupiravir Mechanism of Mutagenesis

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In this video, we explore the mechanism of mutagenesis of molnupiravir, an oral antiviral drug that was invented at Emory University, and is being developed by Merck in collaboration with Ridgeback Biotherapeutics.

Molnupiravir is a broad spectrum antiviral that was originally developed for influenza, but right now scientists are focusing on fighting the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Data shows how it reduced the risk of hospitalization or death by approximately 50% compared to placebo for Patients with Mild or Moderate COVID-19.

Merck Plans to Seek Emergency Use Authorization in the U.S. as Soon as Possible and to Submit Applications to Regulatory Agencies Worldwide. If Authorized, Molnupiravir Could be the First Oral Antiviral Medicine for COVID-19.


Kabinger et al. (2021). Mechanism of molnupiravir-induced SARS-CoV-2 mutagenesis. Nat Struct Mol Biol. 28, 740–746.

Merck and Ridgeback’s Investigational Oral Antiviral Molnupiravir Reduced the Risk of Hospitalization or Death by Approximately 50 Percent Compared to Placebo for Patients with Mild or Moderate COVID-19 in Positive Interim Analysis of Phase 3 Study

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