3 July 2020 

Sanofi and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals have reported that a Phase III clinical trial of rheumatoid arthritis drug Kevzara (sarilumab) failed to meet its primary and key secondary endpoints in Covid-19 patients who required mechanical ventilation in the US. Minor positive trends were demonstrated in the primary pre-specified analysis group, but the results did not achieve statistical significance.

Zydus Cadila has secured regulatory approval from the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) to conduct human trials of its Covid-19 vaccine candidate. The vaccine demonstrated a strong immune response in animal studies, and the antibodies generated were found to completely neutralise the wild type virus. This approval comes days after DCGI authorised Bharat Biotech’s Covid-19 vaccine candidate for trials.

A joint venture by Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) and ChemRar Group is set to boost the production of the antiviral drug Avifavir, which received the Russian government’s preliminary approval to treat Covid-19. The first 100,000 treatment courses were supplied last month to 35 regions in Russia and to the Republic of Belarus. The aim now is to increase the production capacity threefold, up to 300,000 courses per month.

Electric-car company Tesla is making mobile molecule printers to help German pharmaceutical company CureVac create a potential Covid-19 vaccine, according to Reuters. CureVac is said to be working on developing portable, automated mRNA production units that can be sent to remote locations to make its Covid-19 vaccine candidate and other mRNA therapies.