MANILA, Philippines — Anti-cough herb, Lagundi, may soon be tested as a possible therapeutic supplement in the treatment of patients with coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
The trial of the medicinal herb, known scientifically as vitex negundo, may start next month according to Science and Technology Secretary Fortunato dela Peña.
He added that the University of the Philippines-Manila Ethics Board has already issued clearance for such work and experts are just waiting for the approval of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
The project is expected to run for five months, after which the output of the project will be given to COVID-19 patients.
Dela Peña explained that Lagundi is registered with the FDA as a therapeutic medicine for cough and respiratory infections.
It has anti-viral properties and can be used as an anti-inflammatory and antipyretic.
“Siya [lagundi] ay ibibigay para ang pasyente ay magkaroon ng (it will be given to patients to provide) relief from the symptoms,” Secretary Dela Peña said.
“Kasi ang usual symptoms naman ng COVID-19 includes iyong sore throat, iyong fever, iyong ubo, at iyan ay ina-address ng lagundi. Kaya titingnan kung ano ang magiging epekto kung sila ay bibigyan niyan,” he added.
(The usual symptoms of COVID-19 include sore throat, fever and cough. These are the conditions that lagundi addresses. So we will look at the effects of lagundi on the patients.)
The Secretary also revealed that another part of their lineup for clinical trials is the tawa-tawa plant.
Meanwhile, the clinical trial on virgin coconut oil still continues and Dela Peña noted some positive results of VCO in COVID-19 patients taking it.
“Doon sa mga binigyan kasi mga mild cases iyon, marami nang nakauwi doon sa mga confined,” he said.
(It was given to mild cases. Many of those who were confined had already gone home.)
“Pero ang protocol dyan ay tatapusin ang pagbibigay ng VCO for 28 days kahit nakauwi na para ma-compare yung kanyang status at day zero, at day 14 and at day 28,” he concluded.
(But the protocol is to complete the intake of VCO for 28 days even after returning home in order to have a comparison of the patients’ condition from day zero, at day 14 and at day 28.) MNP (with reports from Rey Pelayo)
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