Washington – The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today approved an emergency authorization for the use of the drug remdesivir as a treatment to help combat the effects of the coronavirus.
President Donald Trump made the announcement this afternoon at the White House.
Federal epidemiologist Anthony Fauci had earlier this week said that initial tests indicated that the drug could reduce the recovery time of a patient hospitalized with the novel virus from 15 to 11 days.RELATED
Along with President Trump, Dr. Deborah Birx, coordinator of the White House working group on the coronavirus, indicated this afternoon that “it is the first step towards treatment.”
The Secretary of Health, Alex Azar, indicated, for his part, that the Naconal Institute on Allergies and Infectious Diseases, led by Fauci, the FDA and scientists around the United States “have worked tirelessly” in search of a potential treatment against the coronavirus. , which has caused the death of over 63,000 people in this country.
“Today, the FDA issued an emergency use authorization for the remdesivir of investigational antiviral drugs for the treatment of suspected or laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 in hospitalized adults and children with serious illness. Although limited safety information is known and the efficacy of using remdesivir to treat people in the hospital with COVID-19, the investigational drug in a clinical trial has been shown to shorten recovery time in some patients, “the FDA statement read.
Remdesivir, from the company Gilead Sciences, is administered intravenously and is designed to interfere with an enzyme that replicates viral genetic material.
According to the company, in animal tests to treat SARS and MERS – diseases caused by similar coronaviruses – the drug helped prevent infection and reduced the severity of symptoms when administered early enough in the course of the disease.
The FDA permit allows remdesivir to be distributed in the United States and administered by healthcare providers, as appropriate, to treat COVID-19 in hospitalized patients with serious illness. Severe disease is defined as patients with low blood oxygen levels or who need oxygen therapy or more intensive respiratory support, such as an artificial respirator.
Days before the announcement, President Donald Trump and Fauci praised the results of the first trials of the drug, hoping that it can help stop the increasing number of deaths.
According to the report of the White House collective coverage team, Fauci warned that the first results on the drug have yet to be analyzed by other scientists.
“But it is certainly a positive event, it is a very positive event,” said President Trump.
In a press release issued by the pharmaceutical company, it was indicated that the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) completed a first successful trial of this drug.
The firm added that by the end of May it expects to have data from a second study evaluating the efficacy of 5 and 10-day doses in patients with moderate COVID-19.
This news also caused shares in US markets to rise on Wednesday, anchored in the hope that this treatment will progress and help accelerate the gradual reopening of the world’s major economies.