None of the four once-promising drugs evaluated for the treatment of COVID-19 in the ongoing World Health Organization (WHO) Solidarity Trial—remdesivir, hydroxychloroquine, lopinavir, or interferon-beta-1a—prevented in-hospital death, reduced the need for ventilation, or shortened the duration of hospitalization.  The interim results of the open-label study, published yesterday in the New England Journal of Medicine, involved randomly assigning hospitalized COVID-19 patients equally to whichever trial drugs were available locally or to a control group from Mar 22 to Oct 4. All four drugs were already in use for other indications and had been repurposed as potential treatments for the novel coronavirus.

 

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