What type of medications are used to treat viruses?
As the virus is neither living nor nonliving. They are living inside the host cell. But dead outside the cell. The virus has no specific medicine to cure. They are cured by antiviral drugs. The antiviral drugs should not be overtake it should be predicted by doctors advice. Which can have very bad side effects to our health and our body too.
There are few antiviral medicines and such medicines can only inhibit multiplication of the virus, i.e. the medicines can not 'kill' viral particles.
- Generally the antiviral medicines are nucleoside analogues : i.e. these molecules appear as normal nucleosides but their base pairing specifications are different from that of normal nucleosides.
Viral DNA incorporates such analogues during replication which in turn makes the viral genetic material ineffective by altering it. Nucleoside analogues are most successful type of antiviral medicines. Belgian physician Dr Erik de Clercq is recognised as the pioneer in this field.
Another strategy of antiviral medicine could be prevention of viral entry into the host cell. This is achieved by competitive blocking of potential receptors present on host cell membrane.
- Then there are antiviral medicines which can act specifically against retrovirus: such medicines inhibit the viral enzyme reverse transcriptase.