NIH: NIH-funded study to evaluate drugs prescribed to children with COVID-19

NIH: NIH-funded study to evaluate drugs prescribed to children with COVID-19. “Researchers funded by the National Institutes of Health have launched an effort to evaluate drugs prescribed to treat COVID-19 in infants, children and adolescents across the country. The study leverages an existing clinical trial that examines drugs that are prescribed off-label to children for a variety of medical conditions. Because many drugs have not been tested specifically for use in children, physicians will often prescribe drugs off-label to children because they lack an alternative, approved treatment.”

ScienceBlog: Study Identifies Potential Approach To Treat Severe Respiratory Distress In Patients With COVID-19

ScienceBlog: Study Identifies Potential Approach To Treat Severe Respiratory Distress In Patients With COVID-19. “Early data from a clinical study suggest that blocking the Bruton tyrosine kinase (BTK) protein provided clinical benefit to a small group of patients with severe COVID-19. Researchers observed that the off-label use of the cancer drug acalabrutinib, a BTK inhibitor that is approved to treat several blood cancers, was associated with reduced respiratory distress and a reduction in the overactive immune response in most of the treated patients.”

The Daily Pennsylvanian: Penn Med professor leads research team on repurposing drugs for COVID-19 treatment

The Daily Pennsylvanian: Penn Med professor leads research team on repurposing drugs for COVID-19 treatment. “Penn researchers are studying how drugs that are typically prescribed for other diseases may also be used to treat coronavirus patients. Perelman School of Medicine Assistant Professor of Medicine David Fajgenbaum, who is leading the drug repurposing efforts, said doctors across the world have treated coronavirus patients with over 150 drugs so far. Fajgenbaum said he began studying the effectiveness of these drugs on March 13, with researchers from Penn’s Center for Cytokine Storm Treatment & Laboratory, the Castleman Disease Collaborative Network, which is his independent foundation, and the Medical School.”

New York Times: Scientists Question Medical Data Used in Second Coronavirus Study

New York Times: Scientists Question Medical Data Used in Second Coronavirus Study. “A group of scientists who raised questions last week about a study in The Lancet about the use of antimalarial drugs in coronavirus patients have now objected to another paper about blood pressure medicines in the New England Journal of Medicine, which was published by some of the same authors and relied on the same data registry.”

CNBC: WHO pauses trial of hydroxychloroquine as coronavirus treatment amid safety concerns

CNBC: WHO pauses trial of hydroxychloroquine as coronavirus treatment amid safety concerns. “The World Health Organization on Monday temporarily suspended its trial of hydroxycholoroquine, the drug backed by President Donald Trump to combat the deadly coronavirus, over safety concerns.”

Reuters: Human trials of British coronavirus vaccine to reach 10,000

Reuters: Human trials of British coronavirus vaccine to reach 10,000. “Oxford University and AstraZeneca (AZN.L) are recruiting around 10,000 adults and children in Britain for trials of an experimental coronavirus vaccine, a day after receiving U.S. backing worth up to $1.2 billion.”

Exclusive: Sanofi to enroll thousands for its coronavirus vaccine trials (Reuters)

Reuters: Exclusive: Sanofi to enroll thousands for its coronavirus vaccine trials. “French drugmaker Sanofi SA said it plans to enroll thousands of subjects globally for trials of an experimental vaccine for the coronavirus it is developing with GlaxoSmithKline Plc, and that it has started to discuss advanced purchases with several countries.”

WTVD: Popular heartburn medicine being studied as treatment for coronavirus

WTVD: Popular heartburn medicine being studied as treatment for coronavirus. “Over the past few weeks researchers have been discreetly studying a new potential treatment for COVID-19 — and it might not be what you expect. The treatment in question is called famotidine, and it’s the active ingredient in Pepcid, an over-the-counter medication commonly used to alleviate heartburn.”

Exclusive: Trial of Gilead’s potential coronavirus treatment running ahead of schedule, researcher says (Reuters)

Reuters: Exclusive: Trial of Gilead’s potential coronavirus treatment running ahead of schedule, researcher says. “Remdesivir has drawn tremendous attention as a therapy with the potential to alter the course of the disease, based on anecdotal reports that it may have helped some patients. Those hopes were dampened somewhat on Thursday, when details from a Chinese remdesivir trial in patients with severe COVID-19 inadvertently released by the World Health Organization suggested it provided no benefit. Gilead pushed back on that interpretation saying the study, which was stopped early due to low patient enrollment, cannot provide meaningful conclusions.”

STAT: New data on Gilead’s remdesivir, released by accident, show no benefit for coronavirus patients. Company still sees reason for hope

STAT: New data on Gilead’s remdesivir, released by accident, show no benefit for coronavirus patients. Company still sees reason for hope . “The antiviral medicine remdesivir from Gilead Sciences failed to speed the improvement of patients with Covid-19 or prevent them from dying, according to results from a long-awaited clinical trial conducted in China. Gilead, however, said the data suggest a ‘potential benefit.’ A summary of the study results was inadvertently posted to the website of the World Health Organization and seen by STAT on Thursday, but then removed.”

Associated Press: More deaths, no benefit from malaria drug in VA virus study

Associated Press: More deaths, no benefit from malaria drug in VA virus study. “A malaria drug widely touted by President Donald Trump for treating the new coronavirus showed no benefit in a large analysis of its use in U.S. veterans hospitals. There were more deaths among those given hydroxychloroquine versus standard care, researchers reported. The nationwide study was not a rigorous experiment. But with 368 patients, it’s the largest look so far of hydroxychloroquine with or without the antibiotic azithromycin for COVID-19, which has killed more than 171,000 people as of Tuesday.”

Washington Post: Dozens of coronavirus antibody tests on the market were never vetted by the FDA, leading to accuracy concerns

Washington Post: Dozens of coronavirus antibody tests on the market were never vetted by the FDA, leading to accuracy concerns. “The Food and Drug Administration, criticized for slowness in authorizing tests to detect coronavirus infections, has taken a strikingly different approach to antibody tests, allowing more than 90 on the market without prior review, including some that are being marketed fraudulently and are of dubious quality, according to testing experts and the agency itself.”

National Institutes of Health: Antiviral remdesivir prevents disease progression in monkeys with COVID-19

National Institutes of Health: Antiviral remdesivir prevents disease progression in monkeys with COVID-19. “Early treatment with the experimental antiviral drug remdesivir significantly reduced clinical disease and damage to the lungs of rhesus macaques infected with SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, according to National Institutes of Health scientists.”

Washington Post: How false hope spread about hydroxychloroquine to treat covid-19 — and the consequences that followed

Washington Post: How false hope spread about hydroxychloroquine to treat covid-19 — and the consequences that followed. “The world is looking for answers in the search for a treatment for covid-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, which has claimed more than 100,000 lives across the globe. President Trump has repeatedly touted the anti-malarial medications hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine as that much-needed solution. Even before Trump started talking about the drugs, studies abroad sparked interest in them as a potential cure. News about the drugs spread quickly online, percolated to the media and the White House.”

New York Times: Small Chloroquine Study Halted Over Risk of Fatal Heart Complications

New York Times: Small Chloroquine Study Halted Over Risk of Fatal Heart Complications. “A research trial of coronavirus patients in Brazil ended after patients taking a higher dose of chloroquine, one of the drugs President Trump has promoted, developed irregular heart rates.”