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Established in 1975, the Saudi-based Arab News is the Middle East’s newspaper of record and the biggest English language daily in the Kingdom.
UK overseeing world's largest drugs trial against COVID-19 - Arabnews
LONDON: The UK is overseeing the world’s largest coordinated drugs trial in a bid to find viable treatments for COVID-19. More than 5,000 patients across 165 National Health Service (NHS) hospitals — around 10 percent of all COVID-19 hospital patients in the …
LONDON: The UK is overseeing the worlds largest coordinated drugs trial in a bid to find viable treatments for COVID-19. More than 5,000 patients across 165 National Health Service (NHS) hospitals around 10 percent of all COVID-19 hospital patients in the UK have volunteered in the past month for tests as part of the trial titled Recovery.It hopes to make progress within weeks, ahead of other trials in the US and Europe, which remain in their formative stages with just a few hundred volunteers.Recovery is being led by experts who previously worked on Ebola drug trials in West Africa.Peter Horby, professor of emerging infectious diseases and global health at Oxford University, told The Guardian that the trial was unlikely to yield a magic bullet.He said: This is by far the largest trial in the world. Were guessing some time in June we may get the results. If it is really clear that there are benefits, an answer will be available quicker.The trial will feature an array of treatments, including hydroxychloroquine, a drug touted as a potential cure by US President Donald Trump, and the antibiotic azithromycin.A combination of the two has been promoted by French doctor Didier Raoult and tentatively praised by President Emmanuel Macron.Recovery, though, will wait to see individual outcomes of both hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin before attempting to use the pair in conjunction.Horby suggested that any claims the former was an effective treatment were not based on sound evidence.There is in-vitro evidence that it (hydroxychloroquine) is inhibitory against the virus (in a laboratory setting), he said. But I havent seen any sound clinical data.Other treatments set to be trialled include antiviral drugs lopinavir and ritonavir, and anti-inflammatory drug dexamethasone, used by HIV patients; the immunomodulator tocilizumab, which is used to treat rheumatoid arthritis; and convalescent plasma taken from the blood of recovered coronavirus patients.The antiviral drug remdesivir, which was initially earmarked for use in the Recovery trial, will not be used as it is currently being heavily prescribed for COVID-19 patients in both China and the US.New and experimental treatments, meanwhile, are set to be added to Recovery as soon as they become available. The trials co-leader Martin Landray, professor of medicine and epidemiology at the Nuffield Department of Population Health, said the speed and scale of its assembly were remarkable.It tells you what can happen when everybody is incentivized to make stuff happen as opposed to dither, delay, he said.Horby, though, was quick to lower expectations that Recovery would discover a cure for COVID-19 in a comparable space of time.I think we have to temper peoples expectations about these drugs. Its possible some might have an effect, but its likely to be modest, he said.I think what well be looking at in terms of making a significant impact will be moving on to combinations once we know of things that work. If we combine antiviral and anti-inflammatory drugs, they might have a bigger impact, he added.If you are saying this is an acute, serious viral infection, thats really difficult to treat, you can counter that with well, look at Ebola. Thats much nastier, Horby said.Very surprisingly, the monoclonal antibodies that were trialled did work. Those are the ones we will be waiting for with a bit of bated breath to put into the trial when they become available.
Dubai Health Authority to start treating coronavirus patients with blood plasma - Arabnews
DUBAI: Dubai Health Authority (DHA) announced on Sunday that it will start using blood plasma from recovered coronavirus patients to treat critical COVID-19 cases after the UAE announced that it will adopt this treatment method. The treatment, known as conval…
DUBAI: Dubai Health Authority (DHA) announced on Sunday that it will start using blood plasma from recovered coronavirus patients to treat critical COVID-19 cases after the UAE announced that it will adopt this treatment method.The treatment, known as convalescent plasma therapy, will be adopted sometime this week.Dr. Younis Kazim, the CEO of Dubai Healthcare Corporation at the DHA, said that the authority has introduced the protocol for convalescent plasma therapy at hospitals in Dubai to prevent the spread of the virus.He added that a number of specialized doctors from the DHA have put in place protocols for using convalescent plasma therapy based on international standards. They have also outlined rules and guidelines to specify who can make plasma donations and who is eligible to receive this treatment.Kazim also said that the DHA took this step after international medical results found that once a person recovers from the virus, they develop antibodies that will stay in their blood to fight it.Doctors believe the plasma of patients who have completely recovered from COVID-19 is rich in antibodies that can fight off the virus. They belive that when such plasma is injected into another person with the disease, it will recognize the virus as something to attack.He added that the US Food and Drug Administration revealed that it was scientifically proven that the use of convalescent plasma therapy helped speed up the recovery of COVID-19 patients and decreased the number of days they spent in hospital.