New drug approved for Covid-19 treatment in Europe

New drug approved for Covid-19 treatment in Europe

Cipla shares towered over 9 percent to hit a career-high on Monday after the company informed stock exchanges that it had received approval from the government's Drug Controller General of India (DCGI).

In a letter published to the company's website, chairman and CEO David O'Day said Gilead will begin screening healthy volunteers this week to participate in a phase 1 trial of a nasally administered version of remdesivir.

"An inhaled formulation would be given through a nebulizer, which could potentially allow for easier administration outside the hospital, at earlier stages of disease".

Gilead's investigational drug, remdesivir, is now administered in hospitals through daily infusions. The use in emergency remdesivir in hospitals has been authorized by the United States, and then by Japan.

The course of drugs was the first to display improvement during the trials on coronavirus patients and has gotten consent for urgent use in seriously ill patients in the US and South Korea, and got full approval in Japan. Among the patients who suffered a tough form of the disease, the time of recovery made 12 days in the remdesivir group, and 18 days in the placebo group.

A study of the EMA has shown that patients with Covid-19 and treated with remdesivir is recovering, on average, four days faster than other patients.

Demand for the drug soared after it became a front-runner following promising trials.

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Gilead Sciences plans to start testing an inhaled formulation of its lead COVID-19 therapy remdesivir - now dosed intravenously - that could allow it to be given to earlier-stage patients outside hospital.

"We will continue to collaborate globally to ensure sufficient worldwide supply", Gilead Chief Executive Officer Daniel O'Day said in a statement, adding that the company donated its existing supplies of remdesivir through June.

The EMA cited a clinical trial of more than 1,000 patients hospitalized with COVID-19.

However, the drug is still not licensed or approved anywhere in the world, according to an earlier statement by Gilead.

Gilead Sciences has said it will initiate clinical trials in August to test an inhaled formulation of remdesivir, a potential COVID-19 therapy.

The drug was also used in the treatment of Ebola but was discontinued after "two other investigational treatments in the trial were associated with greater survival", said Gilead in an earlier release (pdf).

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