A team of researchers led by Professor of Pharmacognosy from the University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN), Maurice Iwu yesterday presented a plant-based patented treatment for COVID-19 to the Minister of Science and Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu.
Iwu, who is also the Chief Executive of Bioresources Development Group (BDG), presented the cure to Onu in the presence of Minister of State for Health, Adeleke Olurunnimbe Mamora, Minister of State for Science and Technology, Mohammed H. Abdullahi and Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Dr. Mohammed Bello.
Iwu had told journalists, “I will be meeting with the Minister of Science and Technology in Abuja to make a presentation of the patented cure. We got a patent since 2015, shortly after the Ebola outbreak in Nigeria for SARS Coronavirus, which is deadlier than COVID-19.”
Severely Active Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) Coronavirus (SARS Cov-1) is a more lethal form of SARS Cov-2 (COVID-19), which is the newly detected form.
An outbreak caused by a new human Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) was first detected in Wuhan in December 2019 and has since spread through China to other countries.
Iwu told the ministers that it was important to note that COVID-19 belongs to a class of viruses that are very common, some more serious than others, the class includes the flu virus, SARS, and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS).
He explained that they are Ribo Nucleic Acid (RNA) viruses, which allow them to mutate easily and spread between species. Iwu insisted that SARS and MERS Coronaviruses are more lethal than COVID-19.
He said while the Ministry of Health, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and healthcare professionals are actively engaged in providing treatment and support for the management of the Coronavirus infection, it is important to indicate that the Nigerian scientific community are making contributions towards finding a sustainable treatment for the prevention and/or treatment of COVID-19 as part of drug discovery programme for neglected tropical diseases, emergent infections and orphan diseases. Iwu pleaded with the Minister to use his good offices to kindly appeal to Nigerians for their support.