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Financial Times: Remdesivir “flops” in first reported randomized trial from China: 158 on drug, 79 on placebo, 18 stopped due to side effects


flip flop sandals by Peggy Choucair courtesy of

First reports by the Financial Times today (April 23) of a remdesivir placebo-controlled trial in China say it was a “flop”.  Virtually the same percentage of mortality was found– 13% vs. 14%– with 158 on remdesivir and 79 on a placebo; 18 were withdrawn due to side effects in the active group and an unspecified number (in the FT story) withdrawn from the placebo arm for side effects (this sounds absurd, but is expected in such a trial, in which even the doctors giving the pill don’t know whether it’s a placebo or the real thing).

Gilead’s stock dropped significantly after this story came out.

The FT story admits that the study was stopped prematurely due to low enrollment.  We don’t know for sure what this means.  Others are likely to weigh in with their own interpretations of this study as we will see over the next few days.  Stay tuned.

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