Montefiore Health System and Albert Einstein College of Medicine join a clinical trial. For the evaluation of the experimental drug ‘Remdesivir’. This will help to treat people who are in hospitals with severe COVID-19 infection. Montefiore-Einstein is one of 46 trial sites nationwide. And is the first site in New York state to start. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), a member of the National Institutes of Health, is sponsoring the analysis. This medication has the potential to help people who have severe lung complications as a result of COVID-19. Recruitment for the trial began in March and is still advancing.
NIAID initiates this multi-center international effort. It was to discover if ‘Remdesivir’, a broad-spectrum antiviral drug, acts against COVID-19. Remdesivir has shown promise in animal models of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). And even the Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), both a case of human coronaviruses.
The trial is under Barry Zingman, M.D., professor of medicine at Einstein and clinical director, infectious diseases, in the Moses Division of Montefiore Health System. The trial is “adaptive,” indicating it can go some modifications to include other investigational treatments”. This flexibility allows us to add further therapies to the trial step-by-step to improve treatment as the pandemic continues,” states Dr. Zingman.
Trial participants are the patients in a hospital with a laboratory-confirmed coronavirus infection and lung complications. It includes rattling sounds when breathing, a need for supplemental oxygen. And even abnormal chest X-rays showing pneumonia, or the requirement for a mechanical ventilator. New York is having the maximum number of patients in the U.S.
People in the treatment club will receive 200 mg of ‘Remdesivir’. Intravenously on the first day of their registration in the study and will receive another 100 mg each day for the duration of hospitalization. It will be for up to 10 days total. The placebo group will undergo an equal volume of a solution that resembles ‘Remdesivir’ but contains inactive ingredients.
No therapies are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for administering COVID-19. Remdesivir, an investigational antiviral therapy, was developed by Gilead Sciences, Inc.