Healthcare & Pharmaceuticals

Japan's Daiichi Sankyo halts trials of existing drug for COVID-19 treatment

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TOKYO, June 15 (Reuters) - Japan's Daiichi Sankyo Co (4568.T) said on Tuesday it was halting development of an existing drug for the treatment of COVID-19.

Daiichi Sankyo in March started a clinical trial in Japan of an inhaled form of nafamostat mesylate with COVID-19 patients. The company said in a statement it was discontinuing the trial without citing a reason. The Nikkei newspaper reported that there were safety concerns.

Nafamostat is used in the treatment of pancreatitis and has antiviral properties.

Reporting by Rocky Swift, editing by Louise Heavens

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