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Friday, April 17, 2020

Remdesivir Drug Cured 120+ out of 125 People with COVID-19 In a Chicago Hospital

The report, from the medical news publication Stat, cited a video made by a researcher at the University of Chicago who is helping conduct a trial of Gilead’s drug Remdesivir.
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The University of Chicago Medicine Hospital recruited a total of 125 people with COVID-19 into Gilead’s two Phase 3 clinical trials. Most of those people, 113 had severe disease. All of the patients have been treated with daily infusions of Remdesivir. The researcher, infectious disease professor Kathleen Mullane, said that most patients had been discharged from the hospital and only two had died.

Remdesivir is causing "rapid recoveries in fever and respiratory symptoms, with nearly all patients discharged in less than a week" in patients at a Chicago hospital

Stat News report:
"The best news is that most of our patients have already been discharged, which is great. We've only had two patients perish. Most of our patients are severe and most of them are leaving at six days, so that tells us duration of therapy doesn't have to be 10 days." said Professor Mullane.

“It’s always hard,” she said, because the severe trial doesn’t include a placebo group for comparison. “But certainly when we start [the] drug, we see fever curves falling,” she said. “Fever is now not a requirement for people to go on trial, we do see when patients do come in with high fevers, they do [reduce] quite quickly. We have seen people come off ventilators a day after starting therapy. So, in that realm, overall our patients have done very well.”


It is also one of the 4 drugs being use under WHO Solidarity trials. Remdesivir is an antiviral medication; a nucleotide analog, specifically an adenosine analogue, which inserts into viral RNA chains, causing their premature termination. It is being studied during 2020 as a possible post-infection treatment for COVID-19 illness.
There’s only one drug right now that we think may have real efficacy,” Bruce Aylward of the World Health Organization said last month. “And that’s Remdesivir.”

Coronavirus patients around the world have been rushing to join Remdesivir studies that opened in hospitals in the last few weeks

Gilead says in a fact sheet about Remdesivir the drug

Remdesivir was invented by Gilead building on more than a decade of our research. Over that time, our research scientists have explored the compound for multiple potential uses to help address urgent and unmet medical needs around the world, including Ebola, SARS, Marburg, MERS and most recently COVID-19. O

ur antiviral expertise is the result of more than 30 years of research and the investment of billions of dollars in research and development. Gilead’s antiviral work reflects its commitment to collaborating with the global health community and advancing potential treatments that may help in the global response to public health emergencies. Remdesivir is an investigational new drug created by Gilead. The research that led to remdesivir began as early as 2009, with research programs under way in hepatitis C (HCV) and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). We continued to explore various uses for remdesivir following its discovery, including antiviral profiling in 2013 and early 2014 that suggested the potential for remdesivir to have broad spectrum antiviral activity. 

Gilead’s ground-breaking research has led to an expansive library of compounds invented by Gilead that includes remdesivir. This archive of molecules can be accessed and tested against new viruses as they emerge. Our chemists continually work to invent new compounds, and Gilead has invested resources and time over decades so that even when a molecule initially seems unpromising, it may yet one day save lives. By working in collaboration with both academic institutions and U.S. government agencies, we have been able to bring together disease experts to help expand knowledge of the antiviral profile of remdesivir against emerging viruses, including Ebola, SARS, Marburg, and MERS through in vitro studies and in vivo studies in animal models. Testing of remdesivir against the virus that causes COVID-19 is ongoing

COVID-19 In January 2020, when a new pneumonia-like illness in China was identified as a coronavirus, Gilead moved quickly to determine whether remdesivir could play a role in responding to the growing public health threat that subsequently became known as COVID-19. 

Gilead’s preclinical data suggested that testing remdesivir against COVID-19 should take place immediately. 

• Gilead’s team of virologists quickly generated the preclinical data to characterize remdesivir’s activity against the new COVID-19 virus and to determine the potential benefit of further testing. 

• In January 2020, Gilead provided remdesivir to the China CDC to test the compound against isolates of the virus that causes COVID-19 through their independent antiviral assays. Gilead provided remdesivir to U.S. academic institutions in February 2020 for similar testing. Results are expected soon. 

• In February 2020, Gilead began supporting multiple clinical trials to evaluate the safety and efficacy of remdesivir as a potential treatment for COVID-19. 

• Gilead donated study drug and provided scientific input for two clinical trials coordinated by the China-Japan Friendship Hospital in China, which began enrolling patients in early to mid- February. 

• Gilead donated drugs and provided scientific input for a NIAID-initiated global clinical trial of remdesivir in late February, including the first site to enroll patients in the United States. 

• In late February, Gilead initiated its own two Phase 3 studies of remdesivir, which will enroll patients in countries globally with high numbers of diagnosed COVID-19 cases. These studies began enrolling patients in March 2020 and will evaluate two dosing durations of remdesivir. 

• Gilead has provided input on the design of both WHO’s global Solidarity trial and the INSERM-sponsored DisCoVeRy trial in Europe. These trials have already initiated and will expand to additional countries over the coming months. Gilead has committed to providing remdesivir to support these studies, which will be conducted in more than 70 countries worldwide. 

• In anticipation of potential future needs, we have accelerated manufacturing timelines to increase our available supply as rapidly as possible. We are doing this before knowing whether remdesivir will be determined to be safe and effective to treat patients with COVID-19


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