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WHO study says remdesivir did not reduce mortality in COVID-19 patients - FT

Oct 15 (Reuters) - Gilead Sciences Inc’s remdesivir had no substantial effect on COVID-19 patients’ chances of survival, a clinical trial by the World Health Organization (WHO) has found, the Financial Times reported on Thursday.

The antiviral drug, among the first to be used as a treatment for COVID-19, was one of the drugs recently used to treat U.S. President Donald Trump’s coronavirus infection.

The Financial Times report cites results from WHO’s Solidarity trial, which evaluated effects of four potential drug regimens, including remdesivir, hydroxychloroquine, anti-HIV combination drug of lopinavir/ritonavir and interferon, in 11,266 hospitalized patients.

Hydroxychloroquine and lopinavir/ritonavir were stopped in June after they proved ineffective, but the other trials continued in more than 500 hospitals and 30 countries, WHO chief scientist Soumya Swaminathan said at an event on Wednesday. (

The study found none of the treatments “substantially affected mortality” or reduced the need to ventilate patients, according to the Financial Times, which said it had seen a copy of the study.

The WHO did not comment on the FT report, saying the results of the study were not yet public.

Earlier this month, Gilead said remdesivir cut COVID-19 recovery time by five days compared to patients on placebo in a 1,062-patient study. The results were published in the New England Journal of Medicine. (Reporting by Vishwadha Chander in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli)