Monkeypox, a close relative of the smallpox virus, is a rare viral infection classified as a high consequence infectious disease (HCID) by UK Health Security Agency.
There are currently no licensed treatments for monkeypox and there is limited data on the duration of its contagiousness, with the incubation period ranging from five to 21 days.
As per the study published in British medical journal Lancet, researchers analysed patients’ response to the first off-label use of two antiviral medications – brincidofovir and tecovirimat – developed to treat smallpox. It found little evidence that brincidofovir was of clinical benefit but concluded that further research into the potential of tecovirimat would be warranted.
Authors of the paper, however, noted that conclusions are unable to be drawn on antiviral effectiveness against monkeypox in a small cohort, calling for further research into antivirals to treat this neglected tropical disease.
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They also reported detection of monkeypox virus in blood and throat swabs.