Remdesivir can be used to treat COVID-19: ICMR

ICMR stated that initial data based on an observational study has shown that Remdesivir drug is effective for COVID-19 treatment. 

Created On: Apr 15, 2020 12:43 IST
ICMR may use Remdesivir drug
ICMR may use Remdesivir drug

The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) said that it might use remdesivir drug for the treatment of COVID-19 if it can be manufactured by the domestic companies. Remdisiver was an experimental drug that was made by Gilead Sciences.

Raman Gangakhedkar, a head scientist at ICMR stated that an initial data based on an observational study has shown that the drug is effective. Once the results of the WHO solidarity trial are released, ICMR will work with some other companies to proceed further.

As per Gilead’s CEO Daniel O’ Day, remdesivir has not been approved for the use anywhere in the world. It is still to be determined whether it is a safe and effective treatment.

Remdesivir drug: Key Highlights

•  The drug was used during an Ebola outbreak.

•  In a study by Gilead, clinical improvement was observed in 36 of 53 patients who were hospitalized due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

•  Multiple clinical trials are taking place across the world to observe the effectiveness of the drug in various contexts.

•  As per Gilead, if the drug succeeds in the three-phase trial, 1 million doses of the drug will be offered for compassionate use.

•  Since the price of the drug is still unknown, civil society groups are worried about the high prices.

•  As the drug was used in clinical trials in China, it was estimated that Gilead may charge $260 per treatment in the country. While in the U.S., prices are expected to be as high as $1,000 per treatment.

Phase-3 Clinical Trial by Gilead:

The 3 phase trial is running in areas that show high prevalence of COVOD-19, across Aisa, the US, and Europe.

One of the trials is for the patients who are showing severe infections of COVID-19 while the other one is for those who are showing moderate symptoms of the virus. The purpose of the study done by Gilead will also examine whether the duration of the treatment for COVID-19 can go down to 5 days from ten.

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