Coronavirus company news summary – US to get first dibs on Sanofi’s Covid-19 vaccine – Takeda launches its blood plasma trials

Allie Nawrat 14 May 2020 (Last Updated May 14th, 2020 09:03)

14 May 2020 

French pharmaceutical giant Sanofi's CEO Paul Hudson has said that the US will likely have first access to its Covid-19 vaccine if it succeeds. In an interview with Bloomberg News, Hudson noted that the US was the first to fund Sanofi’s vaccine research and hence has the right to the largest pre-order.

The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) and ChemRar Group have reported positive data from a multi-centre clinical trial of antiviral drug favipiravir in patients with Covid-19. Results showed that 60% of the 40 patients treated with the drug tested negative for coronavirus following five days of treatment, two times higher compared to standard therapy.

Takeda is set to initiate a clinical trial in July to test antibodies from recovered patients' blood plasma as potential Covid-19 treatment, according to Reuters's citation of  the company’s executives. The trial, which is designed to enrol hundreds of patients, will run for several months.

The University of Birmingham in the UK is set to launch the CATALYST clinical trial to evaluate various drugs for potentially treating Covid-19. Initially, the study will involve four drug and cellular therapies under an adaptive design for rapid investigation of their effectiveness. The researchers will study a series of new drugs, including medicines for existing cancer and inflammatory diseases.