A team of researchers has begun trialling a health food shop remedy in their treatment of coronavirus patients.
Experts at East Kent Hospitals have turned to elderberries to see if it can help those suffering from the effects of the virus.
Sambucol Black Elderberry liquid is a popular product that’s available in many health food stores and it’s that which the team are trialling.
In the past, research has shown black elderberry fruit – or extracts of it – to have antiviral properties, effective against flu and a type of herpes.
Now the National Institute for Health Research has adopted the idea and began their study earlier this month.
Ms Jessica Evans, director of research and innovation at the Trust, said: “We are all very excited to have been given approval to start this trial, which could have huge implications for the treatment of coronavirus.
“A previous study with flu patients showed people who took the extract had significant improvements in their symptoms within two days, compared to six days for those who did not.
“We will be testing whether there are similar effects in people in the community who have tested positive for Covid-19 and are experiencing symptoms, to see if the severity and length of time can be reduced.”
To test whether the remedy helps, more than 200 patients will be given either the black elderberry liquid or a placebo, to see if symptoms reduce.