A small-molecule interferon inducer.

Phase of research

Potential treatment - pre-clinical evidence

How it helps


Drug status

Used to treat other disease

Supporting references
Contradictory references
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Clinical trials

General information

Tilorone is a fluoren-9-one, which acts as an interferon inducer and a selective α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist. Tilorone has anti-inflammatory, antineoplastic, and antiviral properties (ChEBI).

Tilorone on PubChem
Tilorone on Wikipedia

Marketed as



Structure image - Tilorone


Supporting references

Link Tested on Impact factor Notes Publication date
Identification of Potent and Safe Antiviral Therapeutic Candidates Against SARS-CoV-2
Small molecule In vitro Screening
Vero cells 5.09 Nov/25/2020
Heparan sulfate assists SARS-CoV-2 in cell entry and can be targeted by approved drugs in vitro
Polysaccharide Small molecule In vitro
ACE2-GFP HEK293T cells; Calu-3 cells; Vero E6 cells; SARS-CoV-2 pseudotyped particles 6.26

Raloxifene treatment combined with tilorone synergistically inhibited SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus infection in Vero E6 cells. Treatment with tilorone alone resulted in modest virus-related cytopathic effect reduction.

Repurposing the Ebola and Marburg Virus Inhibitors Tilorone, Quinacrine, and Pyronaridine: In Vitro Activity against SARS-CoV-2 and Potential Mechanisms
Spike protein Small molecule In vitro
Vero E6 cells; Vero 76 cells; Caco-2 cells; Calu-3 cells; A549-ACE2 cells; Huh-7 cells; human primary monocytes; SARS-CoV-2 strain USA_WA1/2020; (VSV) SARS-CoV-2 Spike-psudotyped virus 2.87

(Dihydrochloride salt.) SARS-CoV-2 live virus inhibition by the compound in vitro was cell line-dependent. The drug displayed the best efficacy in A549-ACE2 cells (IC50 of 180 nM). It bound Spike RBD, but it did not inhibit SARS-CoV-2 Spike-pseudotyped virus.


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