ZURICH: Pharmaceutical giant Novartis has reached an agreement with US regulators to hold a randomised trial of malaria drug hydroxychloroquine against coronavirus in 440 hospitalised patients.
US FDA has given the medicine authorisation for treatment of the novel virus, however no such scientific proof exist.
“We recognize the importance of answering the scientific question of whether hydroxychloroquine will be beneficial for patients with COVID-19 disease,” said John Tsai, Novartis’ top drug developer.
The drug has been promoted by the US President Donald Trump, after which India has lifted the ban on export of this drug. Trump has been strongly advocating hydroxychloroquine as a treatment of the virus, however many scientists are urging caution against larger usage of the drug.