Depending on the patient’s underlying conditions and the dosages administered, anti-malarial and antibiotic drugs can have a certain cardio-toxic effect by prolonging the QT interval. It has been reported that drugs like azithromycin, hydroxychloroquine are QRS prolonging drugs that have weak proarrhythmic effects at effective dosages. It is, however, unknown if the effect of using both drugs in combination may increase their arrhythmic risk for patients being treated for COVID-19.
COVID-19 has infected an ample spectrum of demographics. Males and females seem to have different risks and propensities to drug-induced cardiac arrhythmias. We aim to study the effect of antimalarial drugs on various human hearts with a variety of comorbidities that may be present in the infected population. These comorbidities include gender, ischemia, metabolite imbalances, and structural diseases.
The cell mathematical model is a state-of-the-art tool of the CiPA initiative, by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
We use female and male versions on bi-ventricular anatomical models.
Firstly, we study electrophysiology scenarios. Next, we will move to electromechanical ones.
A varying set of interaction mechanisms between drugs will be explored and an approximate interaction space can be mapped.
The main objective is to provide quantitative guidance towards the treatment of COVID-19 using these antimalarial drugs.
This study is complementary to efforts such as WHO’s “Solidarity” in which what is tested is the efficacy of the drugs. In our supercomputer-based in-silico trial, we deal with the cardiac safety of the drugs.
In parallel, we are gathering information from our clinical collaborators.
We do preclinical and clinical trials for infectious diseases, used by pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies worldwide to assess drugs safety.
Particularly for COVID-19, with more than 70 drugs and experimental compounds coming from various manufacturers, we propose to make our application directly available to clinicians.