Study: New drug fights flu as well as Tamiflu does

Sep 13, 2009 By MARILYNN MARCHIONE , AP Medical Writer

(AP) -- A new flu medicine may be on the way. Researchers say the experimental drug peramivir (purr-AM-uh-veer) works as well as Tamiflu for clearing up flu symptoms.

It was tested in a large study of people with ordinary seasonal flu in Asia and is given in a single intravenous dose.

Other new studies provide the strongest evidence yet that early treatment with flu medicines can save lives, not just shorten illness by about a day. In one study of hundreds of people around the world sickened by deadly bird , half of those given survived, while nearly 90 percent of those not given antiviral drugs perished.

The studies were reported Sunday at a microbiology conference in California.

©2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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