Connect with us

Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Experimental antiviral drug Remdesivir fails first clinical trial

Jack Burton

Published

 on 

PHOTO: The Edge Markets

Reports are emerging that the experimental antiviral drug Remdesivir, developed by the American pharmaceutical company Gilead Sciences, has failed in its first randomised clinical trial to treat Covid-19, according to draft documents accidentally published by the World Health Organization and seen by the Financial Times. Gilead disputed how the now deleted post characterised the findings, saying the data showed a “potential benefit.”

Gilead originally developed Remdesivir as a treatment for the Ebola virus, where it showed promise at stopping the virus from replicating in clinical trials, but it was never approved.

Numerous media report that researchers in China carried out a study on 237 patients, giving the drug to 158 and comparing their progress with a control group of 79.

According to a summary Remdesivir was “not associated with a difference in time to clinical improvement” compared to the control group. Use of the drug was not associated with patients getting better faster, and 13.9% of patients receiving the drug died, versus 12.8% getting standard care.

A spokesman for Gilead told media, “We believe the post included inappropriate characterisations of the study,” saying it was terminated early due to low enrollment and was not statistically meaningful.

“As such, the study results are inconclusive, though trends in the data suggest a potential benefit for Remdesivir, particularly among patients treated early in disease.”

The clinical trial does not represent the final word on the matter and there are several large-scale trials in advanced stages that should soon provide a clearer picture.

Earlier this month, a study in the New England Journal of Medicine showed positive results for Remdesivir, with 68% of patients improving on the drug. But the study was not an official trial but rather the collation of data from patients who had been given the drug on a “compassionate use” basis, and and was not a double-blind study or compared to any control group. The scientists behind the study and even Gilead warned at the time that it was not conclusive.

Remdesivir, which is normally given intravenously, was among the first drugs proposed as a treatment for the virus and as such still has great hopes riding on it. It belongs to a class of drugs that act on the virus directly as opposed to controlling the abnormal and often lethal autoimmune response it causes. It mimics one of the four building blocks of RNA and DNA and gets absorbed into the virus’s genome, which in turn stops it from replicating.

But the drug is highly toxic and many medical experts were already warning against its use in the early days of the outbreak, as severe or critically infected patients died after using it.

Many doctors are warning that all clinical trials conducted influenced by major pharmaceutical entities should be regarded with extreme caution as they for-profit organisations.

SOURCES: Thailand Medical News | Financial Times

 

Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forums
🔔 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join YouTube for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram

image

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Jack Burton is an American writer, broadcaster, linguist and journalist who has lived in Asia since 1987. A native of the state of Georgia, he attended the The University of Georgia's Henry Grady School of Journalism, which hands out journalism's prestigious Peabody Awards. His works have appeared in The China Post, The South China Morning Post, The International Herald Tribune and many magazines throughout Asia and the world. He is fluent in Mandarin and has appeared on television and radio for decades in Taiwan, Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Thailand26 mins ago

Facebook page that claims to sell dog meat met with scorn on social media

Thailand2 hours ago

Thailand welcomes its first AI influencer, “AI Ailynn”

Thailand2 hours ago

Umbrellas out, more monsoonal rain in the wake of ‘Dianmu’

Welcome back to Thailand!

Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in Thailand - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages!

Thailand3 hours ago

Sunday Covid update: 125 deaths and 12,353 new cases

Thailand12 hours ago

Record-breaking 1 million Covid-19 vaccines given yesterday

Technology15 hours ago

Junk messages must now be blocked by Thai mobile carriers

image
Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Kanchanaburi16 hours ago

Abusive Kanchanaburi temple rehab centre ordered to close.

Phuket17 hours ago

Phuket begins new subdermal injection method for vaccines

Bangkok18 hours ago

Police bust hotel party with ecstacy and ketamine, 59 arrested

Coronavirus (Covid-19)19 hours ago

Phuket Covid-19: 5 new deaths and 4 new Sandbox infections

Thailand20 hours ago

Saturday Covid-19 Afternoon Update: full provincial totals

Phuket23 hours ago

Phuket man finds 30 million baht surprise on beach: “whale poop”

Malaysia24 hours ago

Transgender who fled to Thailand faces extradition to Malaysia

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 day ago

Saturday Covid-19 Update: 11,975 infections, 127 deaths

Thailand2 days ago

Thailand News Today | Nov 1 reopening proposed; arrest for “sexy” officer cosplay | September 24

Tourism4 days ago

Travel data to Thailand for 106 million people unprotected online

Economy6 days ago

Cuts to import duty on alcohol, cigars, part of plan to entice wealthy foreigners

Crime5 days ago

OnlyFans content creators arrested by Thai police on pornography charges

Thailand5 days ago

Party at luxury villa in Phuket raided, homeowner allegedly assaults police officer

Coronavirus Vaccines6 days ago

Doctors say cardiac arrest caused death of man given AstraZeneca booster shot

Coronavirus (Covid-19)7 days ago

Covid-19: Detailed info on vaccinations, hospitalisations, and provinces

Thailand6 days ago

Around 20 people arrested at Koh Samui restaurant for drinking alcohol, gambling, playing pool

Bangkok5 days ago

Governor says Bangkok will only re-open when safe to do so

Thailand5 days ago

Bangkok re-opening Criteria, Thai Airways keeps Struggling | Good Morning Thailand | Episode 93

Phuket3 days ago

Police suddenly began raiding Patong bars selling alcohol

Pattaya4 days ago

October Pattaya reopening on schedule according to mayor

Crime4 days ago

Ex-cop “Joe Ferrari,” other officers charged with violating discipline policy over suspect’s death

Thailand6 days ago

Morning Top Stories | No approved October re-opening, Phuket easing restrictions | September 20

Phuket7 days ago

Phuket domestic travel rules need streamlining, officials discuss

Thailand5 days ago

Government warns that posting pornographic material is illegal following OnlyFans creator being questioned by police

Thailand2 weeks ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism7 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism7 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism7 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Trending