Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility
UCSF-Fresno Doctor Uses 'Promising' Drug on Covid-19 Patients
TLBBHMAP3-U010ALB5ANM-348f959abae2-512-300x300-1
By Jim Jakobs, Digital Producer
Published 4 years ago on
April 17, 2020

Share

It’s a four-syllable drug we may need to all learn by next month: “remdesivir.”
GV Wire spoke with the UCSF-Fresno doctor leading a local study on the drug. Dr. Eyad Almasri says he’s already given the drug to four patients, and the hospital has only had it in stock for a week.
“It is emerging as probably one of the most promising drugs (against) COVID-19,” Almasri said in an interview Thursday.

Originally Developed for SARS

According to UCSF-Fresno, remdesivir, a novel antiviral drug, was originally developed in 2002 for the first SARS and was tried on Ebola in 2014. Remdesivir has shown promising results treating COVID-19 in laboratory studies but hasn’t been validated on a wide scale for patients.

Scientific Approach

“Everyone is hoping that the drug will save many of our patients. But, but it’s still too soon to tell,” said Almasri. “We have to approach this in a scientific way, not our feelings.”
The Gilead Sciences drug has shown promise against other coronaviruses in the past. More than half of a group of severely ill coronavirus patients improved after receiving the antiviral drug, although there’s no way to know the odds of that happening without the drug because there was no comparison group, doctors reported on April 10.
Almasri acknowledged the need for science to take the lead: “Obviously we all have our own biases when we are dealing with our patients, so I want my patient to get better.”

1st Results in on Gilead Coronavirus Drug

The April 10 results were for 53 patients, ages 23 to 82, hospitalized in the United States, Europe, Canada, and Japan. Thirty-four of them were sick enough to require breathing machines.

All were given the drug through an IV for 10 days or as long as they tolerated it.

After 18 days on average, 36 patients, or 68%, needed less oxygen or breathing machine support. Eight others worsened.

Fresno Doctor Urges Caution

“I have anecdotal improvement, one of the first patients who was placed on the drug is getting better,” said Almasri. He continued, “But I have to warn you that (after) the standard of supportive care and a week of mechanical ventilation support, anyone else could have also gotten better, so I don’t want to attribute this to the drug.”
Almasri said he’s so far reserving the limited doses he has available for the patients exhibiting severe COVID-19 symptoms at Community Regional Medical Center and Clovis Community Hospital.
[covid-19-tracker]

Clinical Trials Nearing End

Data on trial testing of patients with moderate symptoms is expected in May.
CNBC reported that Gilead Sciences shares surged by more than 15% in after-hours trading Thursday after details leaked of a closely watched clinical trial of the company’s antiviral drug remdesivir, showing what appears to be promising results in treating Covid-19.
The University of Chicago’s phase 3 drug trial found that most of its patients had “rapid recoveries in fever and respiratory symptoms” and were discharged in less than a week, health-care publication STAT News reported.
Gilead’s clinical trial results involving patients with severe cases of the virus are expected this month.
UCSF-Fresno’s Dr. Almasri believes he sees a light at the end of the tunnel.
“I’m hoping that very soon, this drug will be approved, and it will be widely available.”
(The Associated Press contributed to this story.)

 
 
 

DON'T MISS

Surprising Ways and Places You Can Use SNAP EBT Food Benefits

DON'T MISS

Californians Worry About Crime, Setting up a Ballot Measure Showdown

DON'T MISS

The Pickle Flavor Frenzy and Its Rise in Food Trends

DON'T MISS

Kate Hudson Had a Lifetime to Make a Record. The Result is ‘Glorious,’ Out in May

DON'T MISS

Long-Lost First Model of USS Enterprise from ‘Star Trek’ Boldly Goes Home

DON'T MISS

California Leaders Take Sides in Monumental Supreme Court Case on Homelessness

DON'T MISS

Man Sets Himself on Fire Outside Trump Hush Money Trial Court

DON'T MISS

McDonald’s Ice Cream Machines Are So Unreliable They’re a Meme. They Might Also Be a Climate Solution.

DON'T MISS

Real Estate Experts Talk Fresno’s Economic Future. Are Tough Times Ahead?

DON'T MISS

Unlocking the Secrets to Fresno State’s Superb Baseball Season

UP NEXT

Long-Lost First Model of USS Enterprise from ‘Star Trek’ Boldly Goes Home

UP NEXT

California Leaders Take Sides in Monumental Supreme Court Case on Homelessness

UP NEXT

‘This Is How to Improve Reading Proficiency. We Just Have To Execute It’: FUSD Board President

UP NEXT

Get a 3D First Look at Merced’s High-Speed Rail Station Design

UP NEXT

California Court to Decide on Transgender Ballot Measure Wording

UP NEXT

Rare House Vote Sees Ukraine, Israel Aid Advance as Democrats Join Republicans

UP NEXT

Full Jury and 6 Alternates Seated in Trump’s Hush Money Trial

UP NEXT

Wired Wednesday: How High Will the Price of Gold & Silver Go?

UP NEXT

Lamborghini’s Race Evolution: From Tractors to the Track

UP NEXT

Finding an Apartment May Be Easier for California Pet Owners Under New Legislation

Kate Hudson Had a Lifetime to Make a Record. The Result is ‘Glorious,’ Out in May

2 days ago

Long-Lost First Model of USS Enterprise from ‘Star Trek’ Boldly Goes Home

2 days ago

California Leaders Take Sides in Monumental Supreme Court Case on Homelessness

2 days ago

Man Sets Himself on Fire Outside Trump Hush Money Trial Court

2 days ago

McDonald’s Ice Cream Machines Are So Unreliable They’re a Meme. They Might Also Be a Climate Solution.

3 days ago

Real Estate Experts Talk Fresno’s Economic Future. Are Tough Times Ahead?

3 days ago

Unlocking the Secrets to Fresno State’s Superb Baseball Season

3 days ago

‘This Is How to Improve Reading Proficiency. We Just Have To Execute It’: FUSD Board President

3 days ago

Does Dyer Support (or Endorse) Bredefeld for Supervisor?

3 days ago

Get a 3D First Look at Merced’s High-Speed Rail Station Design

3 days ago

Surprising Ways and Places You Can Use SNAP EBT Food Benefits

Did you know that SNAP EBT benefits used to be called food stamps and that recipients can use those benefits to get healthy food in places o...

24 hours ago

24 hours ago

Surprising Ways and Places You Can Use SNAP EBT Food Benefits

24 hours ago

Californians Worry About Crime, Setting up a Ballot Measure Showdown

2 days ago

The Pickle Flavor Frenzy and Its Rise in Food Trends

2 days ago

Kate Hudson Had a Lifetime to Make a Record. The Result is ‘Glorious,’ Out in May

2 days ago

Long-Lost First Model of USS Enterprise from ‘Star Trek’ Boldly Goes Home

2 days ago

California Leaders Take Sides in Monumental Supreme Court Case on Homelessness

2 days ago

Man Sets Himself on Fire Outside Trump Hush Money Trial Court

3 days ago

McDonald’s Ice Cream Machines Are So Unreliable They’re a Meme. They Might Also Be a Climate Solution.

MENU

CONNECT WITH US

Search

Send this to a friend