Researchers develop promising drug for shingles and herpes treatment

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Researchers at the University of Georgia (UGA) have made significant strides in the development of a molecule that holds promise as a potential treatment for the varicella zoster virus.

This virus is responsible for causing both chickenpox and shingles, two conditions that impact millions of people worldwide.

The Varicella Zoster Virus: Chickenpox and Shingles

The varicella zoster virus is a stealthy virus that causes chickenpox during childhood and then lies dormant in the body. Later in life, it can reactivate, leading to the painful and often debilitating condition known as shingles.

Current treatments for herpes and shingles viruses face significant challenges. Many existing medications are either ineffective or carry the risk of severe side effects.

Additionally, the growing problem of drug-resistant viruses threatens the efficacy of available treatments.

The New Drug: POM-L-BHDU

UGA researchers have developed a molecule known as POM-L-BHDU, which shows tremendous potential in treating shingles lesions effectively.

This molecule also holds promise in combating the viruses responsible for oral and genital herpes.

One of the standout features of POM-L-BHDU is its versatility in administration. Patients can take it orally, intravenously, or apply it topically. This flexibility suggests its potential use in cream-based medications for herpes outbreaks and shingles.

POM-L-BHDU exhibits higher potency against the varicella zoster virus compared to current treatments. It can be applied topically to prevent the virus from spreading to other body parts.

This localized application minimizes drug absorption into the bloodstream, reducing the risk of side effects.

A Broad Spectrum of Action

This groundbreaking molecule is not limited to shingles and varicella zoster virus alone. It also demonstrates effectiveness against herpes simplex 1 and 2 viruses.

The researchers envision a future where the topical formulation of POM-L-BHDU could be available over-the-counter, providing convenient access to treatment at home. The molecule has shown success in both laboratory settings and animal models.


The development of POM-L-BHDU by UGA researchers represents a significant breakthrough in the field of antiviral treatments.

With its remarkable efficacy and versatility, this molecule holds the potential to provide much-needed relief to patients dealing with shingles, herpes, and related conditions.

The molecule’s journey into clinical trials marks a critical milestone in the quest to improve the lives of individuals affected by these viruses worldwide.

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