Sanofi Announces To Stop Trials of Covid-19 Drug After Tests

Sanofi said Tuesday that Phase 3 test of its Kevzara drug "did not meet the primary or secondary evaluation criteria compared with a placebo.

French Pharma giant Sanofi has announced that it is stopping clinical trials of Kevzara drug for serious Covid-19 cases. Only recently, the drug had entered the international Phase 3 clinical tests.

Sanofi said Tuesday that Phase 3 test of its Kevzara drug “did not meet the primary or secondary evaluation criteria compared with a placebo, and in both cases, compared with established hospital care.

Sanofi was conducting the clinical test of the drug in partnership with Regeneron, an American-based company. As per the statement issued by Sanofi, even its American partner is not interested in further clinical tests.

Although Kevzara “did not give us the results we were hoping for, we are proud of the work done by our team,” Sanofi global research head Dr. John Reed said in the statement.

In a sttament, Sanofi said that its study of Kevzara in 420 patients in Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Japan, Russia and Spain didn’t meet its endpoints.

Only some minor improvements were noticed in the patients who were given the medicine. These improvements included relatively shorter hospital stays and improvements in their symptoms versus placebo, but the results were too insignificant to be pursued further.

The kevzara study, like others for Roche’s IL-6 inhibitor Actemra, was based on the assumption that inhibiting IL-6 may protect people infected with the virus from deadly cytokine storm associated with some COVID-19 infections.

Earlier, a US study also announced that Kevzara was not effective in coronavirus patients.

Regeneron, which led that trial, reported some “minor positive trends,” but again the med’s benefit didn’t reach statistical significance.

While Sanofi and Regeneron aren’t planning any further studies on Kevzara, Roche said in late July it’s committed to researching Actemra in COVID-19, including in combo with Gilead’s remdesivir.

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