A clinical trial to treat dengue fever with a new medicine,
Celgosivir, has been initiated at Department of Infectious
Diseases, Singapore General Hospital (SGH) together with
researchers at the Program for Emerging Infectious Diseases
at Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School (Duke-NUS).
CELADEN is a proof-of-concept clinical trial that will
investigate whether a safe medicine derived from the seeds
of Castanospermum australe, commonly known as the
Moreton Bay Chestnut tree, can be used to treat dengue
fever and prevent progression to severe disease.
About 100 million people are infected with dengue each
year. There were about 5,330 reported cases in Singapore
in 2011. At present there are no approved cures for dengue. Treatment is supportive, even for severe dengue. This is the
first time an antiviral medicine is being tested as a potential
dengue fever treatment in Singapore. This trial will test if
Celgosivir can reduce the amount of virus, fever and pain. This approach
is different from dengue vaccines, which cannot be used to
treat a dengue patient when the illness has set in.
Test tube experiments at Duke-NUS have shown that
Celgosivir inhibits all four serotypes of dengue virus and it
also protects mice from dying of dengue. Celgosivir is a safe medicine
as it was previously tested in the United States, Canada,
and Europe for other viral infections for up to 8 months.
Celgosivir is taken orally, so its easy to consume.
If you suspect that you are suffering from dengue fever
and have had fever for only a day or so, you may have the
opportunity to participate in this groundbreaking trial.
How can you contribute?
A simple blood test is used at participating polyclinics
and GP clinics to identify early dengue patients for referral to the CELADEN trial.
The staff at the Investigational Medicine Unit (IMU) located at SGH will explain the details and answer any questions.
CELADEN trial aims to recruit 50 dengue patients between the
age of 21 and 65 who meet trial criteria. Selected
participants will be allowed stay for 5 days in the treatment suites
in SGH (equivalent to an A Class ward) and will be closely followed up for 3
short visits after discharge. The medicine and treatment are free of charge, and you will be receive a cash
payment for your time and transportation costs.
The CELADEN clinical trial is approved by the ethics board
of Singapore Health Services and the Health Sciences
Authority of Singapore.
CELADEN is funded by The STOP Dengue Translational
Clinical Research program grant obtained from the
Singapore Ministry of Health’s National Medical Research
Council and the National Research Foundation.