The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the emergency use of Eli Lilly’s, a pharmaceutical company, arthritis drug – Baricitinib – in combination with remdesivir to treat Covid-19 patients.
The approval came after scientists found that the usage of drug used to fight rheumatoid arthritis leads to significantly improved outcomes for severely ill Covid-19 patients.
On Thursday, Consumer News and Business Channel (CNBC) reported that the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved emergency use of Eli Lilly’s in order to treat coronavirus. Sold under the name of Olumiant, Baricitinib is an FDA-approved oral medication used to treat moderately-to-severely active rheumatoid arthritis.
The CNBC further reports that the approval was based on a review of the data from a clinical trial of hospitalized Covid-19 patients that the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases sponsored. “The trial showed an approximately one-day reduction in median recovery time for patients treated with the combination versus those treated with remdesivir,” the article read.
David A. Ricks, Lilly chairman and CEO said, “Today’s FDA action for baricitinib marks the second Lilly therapy to be granted an EUA, in addition to the recent neutralizing antibody EUA for high-risk non-hospitalized patients, increasing the number of treatment options for COVID-19 patients at different stages of the disease. This is an important milestone for hospitalized patients on oxygen, as baricitinib may help speed their recovery.”
Moreover, the drug was approved by the health regulator in order to treat suspected or laboratory-confirmed hospitalized Covid-19 patients, in which adults, children over two-years-old are included who require oxygen support.
The new findings “suggest that the immune system can remember the virus for years, and most people may be protected from severe Covid-19 for a substantial time,” said study leaders Shane Crotty and Alessandro Sette.