WHO: Remdesivir Doesn't Aid Survival

Clinical trial involved 11K hospitalized patients
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 15, 2020 6:10 PM CDT
WHO: Remdesivir Doesn't Aid Survival
A bottle containing remdesivir is shown Thursday by a health worker at the University of Debrecen in Debrecen, Hungary.   (Zsolt Czegledi/MTI via AP)

A clinical trial by the World Health Organization has shown that the remdesivir has little material effect on patients' chances of surviving COVID-19. The WHO's report on its Solidarity trial, involving remdesivir and three other possible drug treatments, said none of them "substantially affected mortality" among patients or even reduce their need to be ventilated, the Financial Times reports. Gilead Sciences won emergency use authorization in the US for the antiviral after clinical trials provided evidence that it can help severely ill patients recover faster, per MarketWatch. There's no proof yet that remdesivir cuts the mortality rates among COVID-19 patients. It's among the drugs President Trump was given after he contracted the coronavirus.

The WHO trial, which involved 11,266 hospitalized patients, has not been peer reviewed, per the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. "These remdesivir, hydroxychloroquine, lopinavir and interferon regimens appeared to have little effect on in-hospital mortality," the study said. Hydroxychloroquine and lopinavir had already been deemed ineffective, and the WHO trials involving them ended in June. Gilead recently had said a 1,062-patient study showed that patients given remdesivir had a recovery time five days shorter than those given a placebo, per Reuters. Saying its report was not yet public, the WHO declined to comment on it. (Read more remdesivir stories.)

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