Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

A Europe-wide study conducted over three flu seasons finds that the antiviral drug, oseltamivir (Tamiflu®), can help people recover from flu-like illness about one-day sooner on average, with older, sicker patients who have been unwell for longer recovering two-to-three days sooner.

None

Published today in The Lancet, the European Commission-funded ‘ALIC4E’ study was led by the Universities of Oxford (UK) and Utrecht (The Netherlands).

Despite being stockpiled in the UK since 2006 and being widely prescribed during the swine flu outbreak in 2009, oseltamivir remains one of the most controversial drugs in use. This is due to a lack of evidence from independent clinical trials to demonstrate its effectiveness in everyday care overall, and whether it benefits key groups of patients.

A member of a class of drugs called neuraminidase inhibitors, oseltamivir is recommended by public health agencies worldwide for treating and preventing severe outbreaks of seasonal and pandemic influenza.

Carried out with 3266 patients recruited from general practices across 15 European countries, and with 26 partner organisations, it is the first large-scale publicly funded, international trial of its kind to assess antiviral treatment for influenza-like illness in primary care.

Read more (University of Oxford)

Similar stories

Drug could help diabetic hearts recover after heart attack - Oxford research

Researchers at the University of Oxford have identified a drug that could ultimately help improve heart function in people with diabetes who have heart attacks.

Largest ever global study of tuberculosis identifies genetic causes of drug resistance

Using cutting-edge genomic sequencing techniques, researchers at the University of Oxford have identified almost all the genomic variation that gives people resistance to 13 of the most common tuberculosis (TB) drug treatments.

Peter Horby receives prestigious award for outstanding service to public health

The Faculty of Public Health (FPH) has awarded its prestigious Alwyn Smith Prize to Professor Sir Peter Horby (Nuffield Department of Medicine) for 2020/2021 in recognition of his outstanding service to public health as a global leader in epidemic science.

Six new Fellowships announced as part of Oxford-Bristol Myers Squibb Fellowships Programme

The Oxford - Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS) Fellowships Programme continued to demonstrate significant progress over the last year, despite the challenges associated with the global pandemic, including restricted lab access and work from home guidance. Today, we are pleased to announce six new Oxford-BMS Fellowships for 2021.

Researchers set out steps to address mental health effects of the pandemic on young people

Researchers have outlined 14 steps that schools, mental health services and policymakers can take to help children and young people whose mental health has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Anti-cancer drug derived from fungus shows promise in clinical trials

A new industry-academic partnership between the University of Oxford and biopharmaceutical company NuCana as found that chemotherapy drug NUC-7738, derived from a Himalayan fungus, has 40 times greater potency for killing cancer cells than its parent compound.