Gilead’s Antiviral Drug Fails to Treat Coronavirus, Preliminary Study Shows

Gilead Sciences Inc (NASDAQ: GILD) has been running a randomized clinical trial on the experimental drug remdesivir to determine if it is in fact effective in treating coronavirus patients. The World Health Organization (WHO) accidentally published the results of the preliminary study, which show that the antiviral drug has no benefit in reducing coronavirus symptoms.

Gilead’s remdesivir clinical trial, which was conducted in China, failed to improve COVID-19 patient’s condition and prevent them from succumbing to the virus, nor did the drug reduce pathogen presence in the body. The preliminary results were unintentionally posted by the WHO, and then deleted shortly after once the mistake was realized.

The drug remdesivir did not have any virological or clinical benefits when compared to regular care. The subjects in the control control group, which were receiving standard COVID-19 care, had a mortality rate of 12.8%, whereas the subjects receiving remdesivir had an even higher mortality rate of 13.9%- thus rendering the difference to a lack of statistical significance. Furthermore, the study was terminated halfway through, as Gilead had difficulty securing enough test subjects infected with COVID-19 to compile a representational sample size.

In the meantime, a nation-wide study was conducted to determine the effectiveness of the malaria drug hydroxychloroquine on COVID-19 infected patients. Although the drug has been highly publicized by Donald Trump as a possible remedy for the coronavirus, his strong belief turns out to be unsubstantiated – the study did not show any benefits for those infected. In fact, in a sample size consisting of 368 subjects, 28% more deaths resulted in the group which received hydroxychloroquine than those in the control group, which had a mortality rate of 11% while receiving only standard care.

Although side effects were not specifically being tracked when hydroxychloroquine was administered, researchers did note that some subjects may have damaged organs as a result. Previous studies done on the drug suggest patients may undergo severe side effects, some of which include an altered heart beat which leads to sudden death.

Information for this briefing was found via Global News, Stat, and Financial Post. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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