Gilead Sciences’ antiviral drug, remdesivir, is showing positive results in clinical trials. One Chicago hospital reports that nearly all severely ill patients suffering from COVID-19 were discharged in less than a week. The patients experienced rapid recovery in both fever and respiratory symptoms.
According to STAT News remdesivir was one of the first medicines to be a considered a candidate to treat SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. If it proves to be safe and effective, it may get a fast approval by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat to the disease.
The University of Chicago Medicine recruited 125 people with COVID-19 into Gilead’s clinical trials, 113 of whom had severe disease. All were treated with daily infusions of remdesivir.
“The best news is that most of our patients have already been discharged, which is great. We’ve had only two patients perish,” said Kathleen Mullane, the University of Chicago infectious disease expert in charge of the remdesivir study, according to STAT News. President Trump praised the potential for remdesivir last month, saying it “seems to have a very good result.”
NBC News reports that in a study published in The New England Journal of Medicine, 53 coronavirus patients had been given remdesivir through what’s called “compassionate use.” The majority of patients — 68%--were able to reduce the amount of oxygen they needed and some were even able to come off their ventilators.
Gilead released a statement Thursday saying it is looking forward to upcoming data from other clinical trials on severe cases that Mullane intimated could be coming any day, according to STAT News.
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