Drugs Current Affairs - 2020

Central Panel recommends to ban use of TB drugs on crops

The Registration Committee that was set up under the Central Insecticides Board and Registration Committee (CIBRC) has recommended that TB drugs such as Streptomycin and Tetracycline should be completely banned on crops.

Highlights

The Registration Committee held its 114th meet on May 1, 2020. According to the report submitted by its subcommittee, 9% of Streptomycin sulphate and 1% of tetracycline hydrochloride is used on crops. According to the report generated, the drugs were used at its highest in Delhi, Haryana and Punjab.

What is the issue?

The CIBRC allows the use of Streptocycline drug in eight crops. However, it is now found that it is being used on more crops as pesticides. The Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) had earlier recommended that none of the TB drugs should be used on crops. The order was shared with CIBRC as well.

Solution

The report has suggested to phase out use of the drugs by 2022 as no alternatives are now available for these drugs. The users, till then should use these antibiotics according to the label instructions.

Recommendations

The Registration Committee recommends to manage diseases and pests in crops through integrated pest management. The CIBRC has also recommended ICAR (Indian Council of Agricultural Research) to initiate research on better and safe practices.

What is Corona Virus Copy Machine?

After COVID-19 virus invades a human cell, it begins to replicate or copy itself. In order to achieve this, the virus uses its enzyme called “copy machine”. With the enzyme the virus creates its copies after copies.

The researchers recently have invented 3D structure of the copy machine enzyme. This invention has made it possible to decipher the working of drugs such as Remdesivir and their working.

Working

The COVID-19, as soon as it enters a human cell, binds to the human cell enzyme. The binding is done by the spike like proteins on the virus called the corona.

What does the 3D model say?

The 3D structure invented by the researchers found that the COVID-19 virus is similar to that of the SARS virus.

Significance

The research will help in bringing the efficacy of the drug “Remdesivir”. Remdesivir is one of the drugs that help in blocking polymerase. The drug is under trial of WHO.

WHO Trials

WHO has been working on four major trials. They are Remdesivir, Hydroxychloroquine, Lopinavir and Ritonavir and the combination of Lopinavir and Ritonavir along with Interferon-beta.

In India, the Gujarat hospitals are participating in these trials.