WHO Announces New International Trial To Search For COVID-19 Treatments Drug & Diagnostics Development 18/03/2020 • Editorial team Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Electron microscope image of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that cause COVID-19 The World Health Organization announced on Wednesday a global “SOLIDARITY Trial” to generate a large, robust study comparing potential treatments for COVID-19. Currently there are 522 trials listed on WHO’s Clinical Trial registry under “COVID-19.” “Multiple small trials with different methodologies may not give us the clear, strong evidence we need about which treatments help to save lives,” WHO Director General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told reporters Wednesday. “WHO and its partners are therefore organizing a study in many countries in which some of these untested treatments are compared with each other.” So far, Argentina, Bahrain, Canada, France, Iran, Norway, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland and Thailand have confirmed they will join the trial, and the Director-General expressed hope that others would soon join. According to Ana Maria Henao Restrepo, medical officer in the Department of Immunization Vaccines and Biologicals at WHO, countries will be able to choose from 5 treatment arms: Standard of care available in the country, which will serve as a ‘control’ arm that the efficacy of other treatments will be compared with. Remdesivir, an antiviral drug with activity against Ebola, highlighted as one of the most promising potential treatments Lopinavir/ritonavir, a combination of two common HIV/AIDS antivirals Lopinavir/ritonavir and the anti-inflammatory drug interferon beta Chloroquine, an antimalarial drug, or its less toxic derivative, hydroxychloroquine The large, international study will hopefully “generate the robust data we need to show which treatments are the most effective,” said Dr Tedros. This story was updated 21 March 2020. Image Credits: NIAID-RML. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Combat the infodemic in health information and support health policy reporting from the global South. Our growing network of journalists in Africa, Asia, Geneva and New York connect the dots between regional realities and the big global debates, with evidence-based, open access news and analysis. To make a personal or organisational contribution click here on PayPal.