NEW DELHI: A clinical trial conducted by the World Health Organisation (WHO) with Remdesivir medication found it to be of no effect on COVID-19 patients. Remdesivir is an antiviral medication formulated by Gilead Sciences Inc. WHO conducted a ‘solidarity’ trial evaluating the effects of four potential drugs which included remdesivir, hydroxychloroquine, ritonavir, and interferon on 11,266 adult patients across 30 countries.
Soumya Swaminathan, Chief Scientist, WHO, informed that hydroxychloroquine and ritonavir were stopped in June after they were found to be ineffective, but trials on other two drugs continued. The latest report from the trial shows that remdesivir regimens showed little or no effect on the stay duration of SARS-CoV-2 infected patients in hospitals or the chances of survival in the patients.
Remdesivir was originally developed as a treatment for Ebola and Hepatitis C. The drug interferes with the reproduction of viruses by attaching itself to the viral gene. Remdesivir was granted emergency authorization in the United States of America. However, a trial by the National Institutes of Health found the medication to moderately reduce recovery time in severely ill patients. The recent report by WHO was released online and has not been reviewed yet.