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Uncertainties hurt prospects of China's homegrown COVID antivirals

SIM0417 and VV116 lack data on effectiveness, face competition from Paxlovid

A patient's information is registered at the entrance to the fever clinic of the Central Hospital of Wuhan amid a coronavirus outbreak on Dec. 31.

On Jan. 29, as China was still battling the remnants of a wave of COVID-19 infections that emerged after the government dismantled its zero-COVID policy, the national drug regulator said it had given conditional approval to two homegrown antivirals specifically designed for treating the virus.

A day later, a National Health Commission official signaled the battle was drawing to a close, saying that the number of COVID-19 infections had dropped to a "low level."

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