Remdesivir, an antiviral drug developed by American biopharmaceutical company 'Gilead Sciences', was originally formulated to treat the Ebola virus.
But after experiments conducted by the National Institutes for Health showed that the drug has sped up recovery time by more than 30-percent, it has positioned itself as the standard treatment for COVID-19.
The study, jointly held by the NIH at 73 medical centers worldwide including South Korea's Seoul National University Hospital was carried out on one-thousand patients infected with COVID-19.
Results indicated that patients who took Remdesivir had a 31% faster recovery time than those in the placebo group, making recoveries in 11 days compared to 15and had a 6-percent lower chance of showing any side effects.
As a result, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration gave the greenlight for the emergency use of Remdesivir on COVID-19 patients with severe symptoms.
Professor Oh Myoung-don of Seoul National University Hospital, said that the latest experiments led to Remdesivir becoming the first-ever COVID-19 treatment.
He also said that, although more developments are needed to improve its effectiveness, Remdesivir could act as a basis for more efficient COVID-19 treatments in the future.
Kim Mok-yeon, Arirang News.