LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – With tens of thousands of people across the world dying from the novel coronavirus, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center has becoming the latest hospital to take part in a clinical trial to test whether the antiviral drug remdesivir can be used as a treatment.
Cedars-Sinai announced Tuesday that is one of dozens of medical centers across the U.S. taking part in a trial organized by the National Institute of Health.
UC Irvine Medical Center reported last week it was also taking part.
Remdesivir was first develop by Northern California biotech company Gilead Sciences as a possible treatment for the Ebola virus. It is administered intravenously.
Cedars-Sinai will enroll up to 30 hospitalized COVID-19 patients in the trial. One group will receive daily doses of remdesivir for up to 10 days, while the control group will receive a placebo.
There are currently no FDA-approved treatments on the market for COVID-19. The NIA’s remdesivir clinical trial got underway back in late February at the University of Nebraska Medical Center.
“If a trial is coming out to be very, very positive, meaning that the results in the treatment arm compared to the placebo arm, at that point in time, sometimes the trial could actually be stopped and the FDA could review the data and decide whether it wants to approve it,” UC Irvine professor Dr. Alpesh Amin told CBS2 last week.
As of Monday, L.A. County had 2,474 confirmed COVID-19 cases with 44 fatalities.