NIH to study remdesivir-esque Gilead compound as potential COVID-19 treatment

The National Institutes of Health will conduct independent trials investigating the effectiveness of GS-441524, a Gilead drug compound that bears similarities to its remdesivir, in treating COVID-19.

The NIH’s National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences announced these plans in an Aug. 20 letter to two MD Anderson Cancer Center researchers and three members of Public Citizen's Health Research Group, all of whom had recently written to the NIH and FDA urging them to pressure Gilead into running studies on the compound.

GS-441524 has not yet been tested in humans, but preliminary research suggests it works to inhibit viruses in a similar way to remdesivir. 

"Scientists in our Division of Preclinical Innovation reviewed the literature and agree that this compound merits further exploration,” the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences wrote in its letter. "We are planning to independently test the therapeutic hypothesis for GS-441524 in treating SARS-CoV-2 infection and have informed our colleagues at [the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases] about our plans for preclinical studies. We expect to conduct these studies quickly and make the results available to the research community for further consideration."

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