RECOVERY coronavirus trial : University of Oxford researchers in the UK have initiated a coronavirus clinical trial called the Randomised Evaluation of COVid-19 thERapY (RECOVERY) trial.
The RECOVERY clinical trial, which has enrolled the first patients, will test the effects of potential drug treatments for COVID-19 patients admitted to hospitals.
The objective of the clinical trial is expected to help doctors and the health service with the information they need to decide on which treatments are to be used for coronavirus.
An expert panel that advises the Chief Medical Officer in England has recommended the initial treatments to include Lopinavir-Ritonavir and the steroid dexamethasone for the RECOVERY coronavirus trial.
Lopinavir-Ritonavir is used for HIV treatment, while the steroid dexamethasone is used in a broad range of conditions for reducing inflammation.
The safety and side effects of the two drugs are well known, said the University of Oxford.
According to the university, the RECOVERY COVID-19 trial will be expanded in the future to evaluate the effect of other potential treatments once they become available.
The RECOVERY clinical trial will enroll adult inpatients who have tested positive for the novel coronavirus in NHS hospitals, and who have not been omitted for medical reasons.
Patients selected for the coronavirus clinical trial, who will all get the usual standard of care, will be given either one of the two drugs being evaluated or no additional medication.
In the course of time, the researchers can see the effects of the possible new coronavirus treatments and compare them to that of the current treatments used for COVID-19 patients.
Peter Horby – a professor at the University of Oxford and also the chief investigator of the RECOVERY coronavirus trial, said: “There is an urgent need for reliable evidence on the best care for patients with COVID-19. Providing possible new treatments through a well-designed clinical trial is the best way to get that evidence.
“Adults admitted to hospital with COVID-19 should be offered the opportunity to participate in this trial and contribute to improving care for everyone. All patients will receive the standard full medical care, regardless of which treatment group they are placed in.”
The RECOVERY COVID-19 trial, which has been categorized as an Urgent Public Health Research Study, has received £10.5 million under the £20 million rapid research response funded by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), and by the Department of Health and Social Care via the National Institute for Health Research.
Martin Landray – a professor at the University of Oxford and deputy chief investigator of the RECOVERY coronavirus trial said: “The streamlined design of this clinical trial allows consenting patients to be enrolled in large numbers easily and without compromising patient safety or adding significantly to the workload of busy hospitals and their staff. In this way we can rapidly assess the value of potential treatments for COVID-19 and provide reliable information on the best ways to treat patients with this disease.”
Coronavirus or COVID-19 is a new viral infectious disease which causes respiratory illness. Some of the coronavirus symptoms are dry cough, fever, headache, shortness of breath and eventually resulting in pneumonia. Currently, there are no approved vaccines or drugs for coronavirus treatment.