interferon alpha 2B

Gobierno de Cuba (left); AP (right)

In Washington this month, President Trump announced the U.S. had just “bought a tremendous amount of hydroxychloroquine.” That’s the anti-malaria drug he insists is the most promising treatment for the new coronavirus, or COVID-19. "A game-changer,” the conservative leader likes to say.

In Havana, Eduardo Martínez – head of BioCubaFarma, communist Cuba’s state-run biotech and pharmaceutical industry – just as often touts the island’s anti-dengue drug interferon alpha 2B (or alfa 2b), which he and the government insist is a COVID-19 wonder drug.

Ramon Espinosa / AP via Miami Herald

Last week, we asked if the U.S. should loosen economic sanctions against countries during grave crises like the new coronavirus. We considered Venezuela; this week we look at Cuba — and U.S. sanctions against its communist regime.