Scientists develop miracle drug that can cure any viral infection

Flu virus

In what might be the greatest medical discovery since penicillin, scientists have developed a broad-spectrum drug which they claim can cure everything – from the common cold to HIV to almost any other virus one can think of.

A team of researchers at the the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the US created the drug, known by the acronym DRACO, which homes in on infected cells and makes them self-destruct.

Its hit list includes human rhinoviruses -- the bugs that cause half of colds in adults and almost all colds in children -- flu, polio, a stomach bug and deadly dengue fever, the researchers said.

But DRACO, they said, is also expected to zap measles and German measles, cold sores, rabies and even HIV – and could be on pharmacy shelves in a decade, the Daily Mail reported.

Lead researcher Mike Rider said: "It's certainly possible that there's some virus that we aren't able to treat but we haven't found it yet.

"The discovery of antibiotics revolutionised the treatment of bacterial infections and we hope that this will revolutionise the treatment of viral infections. There aren't very many anti-viral drugs out there at the moment."

In lab tests, DRACO killed 15 viruses, including germs behind the common cold and two types of flu. It also saved the lives of mice given a dose of flu that should have killed them.

Amazingly, it's found to be working so quickly that if taken early enough it should stop any symptoms from appearing.

Tests showed that it also wards off viruses, meaning it could stop people from becoming ill in the first place, the researchers reported in the journal PLoS ONE.

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