WHO Expands Recommendation for Veklury(R) (Remdesivir) to Patients With Severe Disease in Latest Update to COVID-19 Guideline
-- Veklury is Now Recommended by the
"When the full results of SOLIDARITY were published in
"The WHO's latest COVID-19 guideline update will help further expand access for remdesivir to those with more significant disease
Veklury (remdesivir) is a nucleotide analog invented by Gilead, building on more than a decade of the company's antiviral research. Remdesivir has an established safety profile and minimal drug interactions in diverse populations. Veklury is the antiviral standard of care for the treatment of hospitalized patients with COVID-19 and is a recommended treatment for reducing disease progression in non-hospitalized patients at high risk of disease progression. At this time, more than half of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 in
Veklury was approved by the FDA in
Veklury directly inhibits viral replication inside of the cell by targeting the SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA polymerase. Due to Veklury's mechanism of action, it has a high barrier to resistance. In vitro laboratory testing in multiple independent studies show that Veklury continues to demonstrate durable activity against SARS-CoV2 as it evolves, including the Delta variant and Omicron variants BA.4 and BA.5. As new SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern emerge around the world, Gilead continuously evaluates the effectiveness of Veklury against viral variants.
Veklury is approved or authorized for temporary use in approximately 50 countries worldwide. To date, Veklury and generic remdesivir have been made available to more than 11 million patients around the world, including more than 7 million people in 127 middle- and low-income countries through Gilead's voluntary licensing program. These licenses currently remain royalty-free, reflecting Gilead's existing commitment to enabling broad patient access to remdesivir.
Veklury(R) (remdesivir 100 mg for injection) is indicated for the treatment of COVID-19 in adults and pediatric patients (at least 28 days old and weighing at least 3 kg) with positive results of SARS-CoV-2 viral testing,
- Hospitalized, or
- Not hospitalized and have mild-to-moderate COVID-19 and are at high risk for progression to severe COVID-19, including hospitalization or death.
For more information, please see the
Veklury is contraindicated in patients with a history of clinically significant hypersensitivity reactions to Veklury or any of its components.
Warnings and precautions
- Hypersensitivity, including infusion-related and anaphylactic reactions: Hypersensitivity, including infusion-related and anaphylactic reactions, has been observed during and following administration of Veklury; most occurred within one hour. Monitor patients during infusion and observe for at least one hour after infusion is complete for signs and symptoms of hypersensitivity as clinically appropriate. Symptoms may include hypotension, hypertension, tachycardia, bradycardia, hypoxia, fever, dyspnea, wheezing, angioedema, rash, nausea, diaphoresis, and shivering. Slower infusion rates (maximum infusion time up to 120 minutes) can potentially prevent these reactions. If a severe infusion-related hypersensitivity reaction occurs, immediately discontinue Veklury and initiate appropriate treatment (see Contraindications).
- Increased risk of transaminase elevations: Transaminase elevations have been observed in healthy volunteers and in patients with COVID-19
whoreceived Veklury; these elevations have also been reported as a clinical feature of COVID-19. Perform hepatic laboratory testing in all patients (see Dosage and administration). Consider discontinuing Veklury if ALT levels increase to >10x ULN. Discontinue Veklury if ALT elevation is accompanied by signs or symptoms of liver inflammation.
- Risk of reduced antiviral activity when coadministered with chloroquine or hydroxychloroquine: Coadministration of Veklury with chloroquine phosphate or hydroxychloroquine sulfate is not recommended based on data from cell culture experiments, demonstrating potential antagonism, which may lead to a decrease in antiviral activity of Veklury.
- The most common adverse reaction (>=5% all grades) was nausea.
- The most common lab abnormalities (>=5% all grades) were increases in ALT and AST.
- Drug interaction trials of Veklury and other concomitant medications have not been conducted in humans.
Dosage and administration
- Dosage: For adults and pediatric patients weighing >=40 kg: 200 mg on Day 1, followed by once-daily maintenance doses of 100 mg from Day 2 administered only via intravenous infusion. For pediatric patients >=28 days and weighing >=3 kg: 5 mg/kg on Day 1, followed by once-daily maintenance doses of 2.5 mg/kg from Day 2, administered only via intravenous infusion.
- Treatment duration:
- For hospitalized patients requiring invasive mechanical ventilation and/or ECMO, the recommended total treatment duration is 10 days. Veklury should be initiated as soon as possible after diagnosis of symptomatic COVID-19.
- For hospitalized patients not requiring invasive mechanical ventilation and/or ECMO, the recommended treatment duration is 5 days. If a patient does not demonstrate clinical improvement, treatment may be extended for up to 5 additional days for a total treatment duration of up to 10 days.
- For non-hospitalized patients diagnosed with mild-to-moderate COVID-19
whoare at high risk for progression to severe COVID-19, including hospitalization or death, the recommended total treatment duration is 3 days. Veklury should be initiated as soon as possible after diagnosis of symptomatic COVID-19 and within 7 days of symptom onset.
- Testing prior to and during treatment: Perform eGFR, hepatic laboratory and prothrombin time testing prior to initiating Veklury and during use as clinically appropriate.
- Renal impairment: Veklury is not recommended in individuals with eGFR
Dose preparation and administration:
- There are two different formulations of Veklury: Veklury for injection (supplied as 100 mg lyophilized powder in vial) and Veklury injection (supplied as 100 mg/20 mL [5 mg/mL] solution in vial). The only approved dosage form for pediatric patients weighing 3 kg to
- Administration should take place only under conditions where management of severe hypersensitivity reactions, such as anaphylaxis, is possible.
Pregnancy and lactation
- Pregnancy: A pregnancy registry has been established. There are insufficient human data on the use of Veklury during pregnancy. COVID-19 is associated with adverse maternal and fetal outcomes, including preeclampsia, eclampsia, preterm birth, premature rupture of membranes, venous thromboembolic disease and fetal death.
- Lactation: It is not known whether Veklury can pass into breast milk. Breastfeeding individuals with COVID-19 should follow practices according to clinical guidelines to avoid exposing the infant to COVID-19.
This press release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 that are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors, including Gilead's ability to initiate, progress or complete clinical trials within currently anticipated timelines or at all, and the possibility of unfavorable results from ongoing or additional clinical trials, including those involving Veklury; the risk that physicians may not see the benefits of prescribing Veklury for the treatment of severely ill patients with COVID-19; and any assumptions underlying any of the foregoing. These and other risks, uncertainties and factors are described in detail in Gilead's Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended
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