Rutgers clinical trial: New drug could help prevent serious illness, death in early-stage COVID-19 patients

Rutgers University has launched a clinical trial to test the safety and efficacy of a new drug that could help prevent serious illness and death in early-stage COVID-19 patients.

News 12 Staff

May 8, 2020, 9:47 AM

Updated 1,441 days ago

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Rutgers University has launched a clinical trial to test the safety and efficacy of a new drug that could help prevent serious illness and death in early-stage COVID-19 patients.
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The drug is called EDP1815. It is administered orally, and is said to be anti-inflammatory and very safe. It will be given to newly hospitalized COVID-19 patients at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital.
They hope to determine if it can regulate the onslaught of something called "cytokine storms,” which cause the immune system to attack organs, such as the lungs, which lead to the immune system malfunctioning and become deadly – and is the reason for severe cases of respiratory distress and death.
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Dr. Reynold Panettieri, Rutgers Professor of Medicine, says a good analogy is getting antibiotics prescribed by your doctor when you feel sinusitis coming on.
“What the drug does, it really targets the earliest phase of when the cytokines are going off maybe one or two at a time and at that point the drug really quells those early signals,” says Dr. Panettieri.
The study will evaluate up to 60 newly hospitalized COVID-19 patients at the hospital, half receiving EDP1815 and half a placebo, for up to 14 days to see if the treatment reduces the need for oxygen therapy.


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