The interim results of a study conducted by WHO revealed conclusive evidence about the ineffectiveness of Remdesivir, Hydroxychloroquine, Lopinavir/Ritonavir and Interferon for the treatment of COVID-19. As per WHO's Solidarity Therapeutics Trial, the repurposed drugs have little to no effect on the mortality rate among coronavirus patients. The aim of this study was to find out the effect of these drugs on the mortality rate, initiation of ventilation and duration of hospital stay. This study includes participants from over 30 countries and is touted as 'the world’s largest randomized control trial on COVID-19 therapeutics'.
The Solidarity Therapeutics Trials were undertaken by 405 hospitals in 30 countries and a total of 11,266 adults were randomized for the study. A total of 2750 people were administered Remdesivir, 954 Hydroxychloroquine, 1411 Lopinavir, 651 Interferon plus Lopinavir, 1412 only Interferon, and 4088 were given no study drug. Following the primary results, the trials for Hydroxychloroquine and Lopinavir were discontinued as they did not show any benefits. The results of the study, which is currently under review for publication in a medical journal, are available on the preprint server medRxiv.
"The mortality findings contain most of the randomized evidence on Remdesivir and Interferon and are consistent with meta-analyses of mortality in all major trials," read the study.
Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) was an active partner in Solidarity Therapeutics Trial conducted under the guidance of the World Health Organization. ICMR issued a statement after the interim results from the study were revealed by WHO. Calling it a 'well-coordinated national effort', ICMR hailed Dr Sheela Godbole who headed the study led by ICMR-National AIDS Research Institute (NARI) of Pune.
As per the statement, head of ICMR Division of Epidemiology and Communicable Diseases Dr Samiran Panda said, "The trial comprised 26 actively randomizing sites with 937 participants in India. We are grateful to the trial participants and their families for contributing to these crucial findings."
The official statement further informed that aside from contributing one-tenth participants in the WHO trial, ICMR also conducted a PLACID trial for convalescent plasma which showed no benefit of it in COVID-19 treatment.
(With inputs from ANI)