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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 96-97

Remdesivir, the magic bullet for COVID-19?

Department of Pharmacology, MGM Medical College and Hospital, Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Ipseeta Ray
Professor, Department of Pharmacology, MGM Medical College and Hospital, Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jpai.jpai_9_21

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Coronavirus infection, or COVID 19, was originally identified in Wuhan, China, in December 2019, but quickly spread over the world, resulting in a pandemic. Remdesivir, an antiviral agent by inhibiting viral RNA-dependent polymerase enzyme and was earlier used against Ebola, HIV etc, was presumed useful in the quest for a remedy against SARS-CoV-2. Several investigations had shown its promising antiviral properties in vitro and in vivo against severe acute respiratory syndrome due to coronavirus (SARS-CoV-1). Hence, Remdesivir was approved by the US FDA in the second half of 2020, followed by DCGI, for treatment in adults and children with SARS-CoV-2, requiring hospitalisation with moderate to severe symptoms. Pivotal trials (ACTT 1, SIMPLE Severe trial) showed a faster median time to recovery in these patients. However, several studies found no statistically significant difference in time to clinical improvement or mortality between patients who got remdesivir and those who did not. Although it was hailed as a "Miracle medicine" when it was first launched for COVID-19, its limited efficacy may not justify its status as such. The goal of this review is to outline the evidence and clinical studies of remdesivir, as well as its rise and decline as a treatment option.

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