TUESDAY, June 2, 2020 (HealthDay News) — The California-based pharmaceutical company Gilead announced that its experimental antiviral drug remdesivir improved symptoms of hospitalized patients suffering with moderate COVID-19, the Associated Press reported Monday.
Remdesivir is the only drug shown to help fight the COVID-19. A study by the U.S. National Institutes of Health found the drug shorten recovery from 15 to 11 days in severely sick patients, the AP noted.
Given by IV, remdesivir interferes with a protein the virus needs to replicate itself and is approved in Japan as a treatment for COVID-19 and in the U.S. is for emergency use in some patients.
For the study, nearly 600 patients were assigned to five to 10 days of remdesivir. By the 11th day patients on five days of remdesivir were 65% more likely to improve, Gilead reported.
“when treating patients with severe disease — those who require non-invasive supplemental oxygen — 5 days of remdesivir led to similar improvements as a 10-day course. The totality of clinical data shows that remdesivir has the potential to meaningfully benefit patients with COVID-19 and offers important hope,” the company said in a press statement.
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