By Audrey Lotechukwu
FRI, OCT 16 2020-theG&BJournal-The World Health Organization (WHO) said yesterday that the interim results from the Solidarity Therapeutics Trial, it coordinated, indicate that remdesivir, hydroxychloroquine, lopinavir/ritonavir and interferon regimens appeared to have little or no effect ”on 28-day mortality or the in-hospital course of COVID-19 among hospitalized patients.”
WHO scientists released their findings as a preprint on medrxiv late last night ahead of its publication in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Initially developed for Ebola, remdesivir was one of the earliest drugs put forward for COVID-19 treatment.
WHO said the study spanned more than 30 countries, and looked at the effects of these treatments on overall mortality, initiation of ventilation, and duration of hospital stay in hospitalized patients.
Remdesivir and hydroxychloroquine were two drugs highly touted by US President Donald Trump who claimed he used it when he was hospitalised for COVID-19 at the beginning of the month.
Newer antiviral drugs, immunomodulators and anti-SARS COV-2 monoclonal antibodies are now being considered for evaluation, who said.
The finding deals a huge blow to Gilead, the drug’s manufacturer, which already has signed a $1 billion deal to supply the drug to the European Commission.
WHO said the global platform of the Solidarity Trial is ready to rapidly evaluate promising new treatment options, with nearly 500 hospitals open as trial site.