What molecule am I?
Idoxuridine is an iodinated analogue of the nucleosides deoxyuridine and thymidine. It was first synthesized by William H. Prusoff at Yale University (New Haven, CT) in 1958. Five years later, it became the first antiviral drug approved by the US Food and Drug Administration, for topical use against herpes simplex keratitis.
Idoxuridine in solution or ointment form also has ophthalmic applications. It cannot be administered internally because it is cardiotoxic.
If idoxuridine is the oldest antiviral, what is the newest? One candidate is lufotrelvir1, a compound disclosed in 2020 by researchers at multiple laboratories of Pfizer Worldwide Research and Development and other institutions. Lufotrelvir is a potential treatment for COVID-19, although, unlike some others, it must be administered intravenously. This month, Robert A. Singer and co-workers at Pfizer (Groton, CT) reported an improved synthesis of the relatively unstable lufotrelvir.
1. CAS Reg. No. 2468015-78-1.
Learn more about this molecule from CAS, the most authoritative and comprehensive source for chemical information.