Gilead’s Remdesivir may just be the drug that finally brings an end to the COVID-19 pandemic that has killed over one million people worldwide. A new study recently revealed that remdesivir, a drug from the stables of Gilead Sciences Inc., used in the experimental treatment of the coronavirus, shortened the length of time that it took for patients to recover.
Remdesivir, which goes by the brand name Veklury, shortened the time of recovery by about five days, compared with a placebo and standard of care. The company said that preliminary results showed that the drug cut short the length of time of recovery by five days. The probability of this recovery rate being attained was more than 50% in most cases that were treated, according to results of the study published in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Remdesivir was reportedly one of the drugs that were used to treat President Donald Trump when he contracted the virus last month. He surprised observers when he got out of the hospital only three days after he was admitted.
The drug received emergency use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration back in May. It has since been used as a drug of choice for the treatment of coronavirus by countries all over the world.
World-renowned physician and immunologist Dr. Anthony Fauci hailed the findings by the research team.
“The data shows that remdevisir has a clear-cut, significant, positive effect in diminishing the time to recovery,” Fauci said during a meeting with President Trump and Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards. “This is highly significant.”
The study was sponsored by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, which Fauci is overseeing and which is part of the National Institute of Health.
Fauci explained that the randomized and placebo-controlled experiment with remdevisir involved more than one thousand patients who were admitted at various hospitals across different countries. Another trial is expected to be carried out in China to truly subject the drug to other test procedures across different settings and scenarios.
Fauci said that new studies are underway that will investigate the effect of combining remdevisir with other drugs such as an anti-inflammatory drug, to examine the efficacy of using a drug combination and remdevisir alone.