Antiviral drug remdesivir helps moderately ill coronavirus patients in trial, maker says

Gilead Says Remdesivir Helped Moderate COVID-19 Patients Improve

Gilead: Remdesivir helped moderate patients improve

Gilead Sciences Inc is developing easier-to-administer versions of its antiviral treatment remdesivir for COVID-19 that could be used outside of hospitals, including ones that can be inhaled, after trials showed moderate effectiveness for the drug given by infusion.

Representational image. A report suggests that this drug can be procured only by government hospitals and cannot be sold to any individual for self-medication as it is under clinical trial.

According to a study, Remdesivir cuts recovery times in coronavirus patients.

By the 11th day in the study, patients who were treated with five days of remdesivir were 65 percent more likely to improve by at least one on a seven-point scale that included measures such as needing treatment with a breathing machine, Gilead said.

The Indian Council For Medical Research recently approved the use of Remdesivir, a broad-spectrum anti-viral medicine, for suspected, laboratory-confirmed cases of Covid19, and for children with severe symptoms of the disease. Outside of Japan, remdesivir is an investigational, unapproved drug. This open-label clinical trial assessed 5-day and 10-day treatment courses of the remdesivir plus standard of care against the standard of care alone.

In early April, the daily increase in cases in South Korea dropped below 40, later stabilizing at about 10-20 cases. The most common side effects were nausea, diarrhea and headache.

Gilead Says Remdesivir Helped Moderate COVID-19 Patients Improve
New study shows remdesivir works in coronavirus therapy, but it might not be enough

Remdesivir is being closely watched after the US Food and Drug Administration granted emergency use authorisation on May 1, citing results from another study run by the National Institutes of Health that showed the drug reduced hospitalisation stays by 31%, or about four days, compared to a placebo.

In a note to investors, Evercore ISI analyst Umer Raffat noted that the study's main goal was changed partway through, from the percentage of patients discharged within two weeks to the scale of improvement after 11 days.

The Drugs Controller General of India has announced that Remdesivir was approved on June 1 under emergency use with condition being a five dose administration.

Shares of Gilead Sciences extended their decline Tuesday morning.

In other words, remdesivir therapy can be helpful, but there's still no evidence that the drug can prevent complications, which is a key objective for COVID-19 treatments.

On Monday, Gilead Sciences said remdesivir exhibited modest improvement in patients with moderate Covid-19 over a five-day course, but for those patients who received it for 10 days it did not show much improvement.

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