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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 108-116

Tamoxifen from chemotherapy to antiviral drug: Possible activity against COVID-19

1 Department of Medical Laboratories, Ahlulbait University, Kerbala, Iraq
2 Department of Microbiology, Al-Shomali General Hospital, Babil, Iraq
3 Department of Immunology, Alsader Hospital, Najaf, Iraq
4 Department of Medical Laboratories, Southern Technical University/Amara Technical Institute, Amara, Iraq
5 Thi Qar Health Directorate, Al Haboby Educational Hospital, Thi Qar, Iraq

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Falah Hasan Obayes AL-Khikani
Department of Microbiology, Al-Shomali General Hospital, Babil
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/bbrj.bbrj_53_20

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Tamoxifen (TAM) is the oldest and the most-prescribed selective estrogen receptor modulator (SERM). It is a member of the triphenylethylene group. TAM has been used to treat breast cancer that spreads to other parts of the human body; it is also utilized to decreasing the chances of breast cancer developing in high-risk patients. Recently, some studies focused on the potential antimicrobial action of TAM. Coronaviruses are enveloped positive-sense RNA nucleic acid viruses that have club-like spikes, characterized by a distinctive replication strategy; they are round and sometimes pleomorphic in shape. Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is regarding the new genera of coronaviredia that appeared for the first time in Wuhan, China, in early December 2019. Due to the continuous spread of the novel COVID-19 with the exponential rise in death numbers, new therapeutic development is urgent; in general, there are no specific antiviral drugs or vaccines for 2019-nCoV. Hence, this review will discuss the most recent information about the antiviral action of TAM against COVID-19 infection by trying to give a deep understanding of major properties, mechanisms of action, immune system responses, and antimicrobial efficiency of TAM that is regarding the promising way to treat COVID-19 novel infection. The current review may serve as an impetus for researchers working in the field of medical microbiology, vaccination, and antiviral drug design. The review also rationally reports and critically analyzes the available knowledge by focusing and mentioning future steps and strategies trying to find appropriate solutions regarding challenges in COVID-19 management by TAM utilization.

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