Gilead Sciences Inc (NASDAQ:GILD) has posted positive data on the use of its antiviral agent remdesivir for severe coronavirus (Covid-19) patients.
The US pharma giant said that phase 3 of a trial on hospitalised patients revealed that those receiving a ten-day course of remdesivir achieved similar improvement compared with those being treated for five days.
The aim of the study was to understand whether the two treatment courses would achieve similar effects.
READ: Gilead Sciences says studies for coronavirus treatment still inconclusive after unsuccessful trial in China
Remdesivir has not been licensed or approved yet in any country and it has not been demonstrated to be safe or effective in Covid-19 cases.
“While additional data are still needed, these results help to bring a clearer understanding of how treatment with remdesivir may be optimized, if proven safe and effective,” said Aruna Subramanian, MD, one of the lead investigators of the study.
Neil Wilson at Markets.com noted that Gilead’s announcement was encouraging and would help lifting US indices when they open.
“This is undoubtedly positive for risk – the closer you get to treatment or a vaccine the quicker we reopen the economy and the lower the risk of a 2nd, 3rd wave outbreaks,” he commented.
Shares in Gilead shot up 8% to US$84.90 in premarket trading.