Why it’s still so hard to find treatments for early COVID-19

More than a year and a half into the pandemic, researchers are beginning to get a handle on how the coronavirus makes people sick and what to do about it. That includes some valuable lessons about what doesn’t work. Now the trick is to find drugs or therapies that do work, especially for people who aren’t sick enough to go to the hospital. Early treatment may limit transmission of the virus and keep people out of overburdened hospitals.

Finding those treatments is proving to be particularly tricky. While the race to create vaccines was astonishingly successful, effective treatments have proved

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