Okay, so I’m officially geeking out with a new idea for a regular blog feature. But here it is, Molecule of the Week!
What you see before you is a ball and stick model of oseltamivir, the drug Tamiflu, your friendly neighborhood antiviral drug for influenza, including H1N1.
How does this bad boy work? Flu viruses need humans or other animals solely to hijack the machinery of our cells to make many new copies of the virus. Tamiflu shuts the process down in the body by blocking the release of the new viruses from those infected cells. Basically it puts the viruses in chemical lockdown so they can’t infect new cells.