Health Editor’s Note: The antiviral, remdesivir, has been tested and has been shown to decrease days to recovery for COVID-19 patients. Currently remdesivir is given by intravenous injection and is administered in a hospital environment. If this antiviral could be given by a less invasive route, it would be far easier for the drug to be administered and thus more accessible to patients….Carol
Gilead’s next step on coronavirus: inhaled remdesivir, other easier-to-use versions
by Deena Beasley/Reuters
(Reuters) – Gilead Sciences Inc (GILD.O) is developing easier-to-administer versions of its antiviral treatment remdesivir for COVID-19 that could be used outside of hospitals, including ones that can be inhaled, after trials showed moderate effectiveness for the drug given by infusion.
Remdesivir is the only drug so far that has been shown to help patients with COVID-19, but Gilead and other companies are looking for ways to make it work better.
Gilead is also seeking to treat the virus earlier. Other antivirals, like influenza pill Tamiflu, work best when given as early as possible after someone becomes infected.
Gilead in a statement on Monday said it is looking at ways to use remdesivir earlier in the course of disease, including via alternate formulations. The company confirmed in an email that it is researching an inhaled version, but declined further comment.