The Food and Drug Administration will reportedly authorize the emergency use of the antiviral remdesivir on COVID-19 patients. Pharmaceutical company Gilead Sciences revealed promising study results involving remdesivir on Wednesday, but the FDA’s reported move would still sidestep the usual testing required to authorize a drug’s usage. Gilead said its trial, as well as one overseen by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, met its goals.
The Gilead study found at least 50% of patients treated with remdesivir improved. The overall mortality rate of the study was 7%, and few patients developed lousy side effects. They did not evaluate the research against a control group, and it’s unclear if those recoveries were natural. A separate study concluded remdesivir was “safe and adequately tolerated” but “did not provide significant benefits over placebo.”