One of the most prevalent diseases in Brazil, dengue continues to this day without a drug to prevent infection or reduce virus replication. Every year, the disease affects about 400 million people worldwide – in Brazil alone, in 2021, 103,595 cases have already been reported to the Ministry of Health.

Four serotypes of the virus can cause the disease, and this is one of the biggest difficulties in developing a drug that is really effective against dengue, as the formula needs to work against all types of the infectious agent.

Photo: Marcelo Camargo/Agência Brasil

Researchers at Katholieke Universiteit Leuven in Belgium, however, seem to have found a substance capable of blocking the virus’s replication. The study was published in the journal Nature last week.

Studying dengue since 2009, Professor Johan Neyts’ team tested thousands of small molecules with potential using an automated process to create 2,000 promising compounds.

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