"WHO today accepted the recommendation from the Solidarity Trial’s International Steering Committee to discontinue the trial’s hydroxychloroquine and lopinavir/ritonavir arms. The Solidarity Trial was established by WHO to find an effective COVID-19 treatment for hospitalized patients," the organization said in a press release.
Remdesivir, hydroxychloroquine and lopinavir/ritonavir were tested in the first Solidarity Trial, which WHO has been conducting since March. The trials involved more than 4,500 patients.
"The International Steering Committee formulated the recommendation in light of the evidence for hydroxychloroquine vs standard-of-care and for lopinavir/ritonavir vs standard-of-care from the Solidarity trial interim results, and from a review of the evidence from all trials presented at the 1-2 July WHO Summit on COVID-19 research and innovation," the WHO said.
The organization said that the two drugs were found to "produce little or no reduction in the mortality of hospitalized COVID-19 patients" in comparison to the existing standard of care. The WHO added that it has seen no evidence that the two drugs increase mortality, noting, however, that "some associated safety signals" have been reported by the add-on Discovery trial, a participant in the Solidarity trial.
"This decision applies only to the conduct of the Solidarity trial in hospitalized patients and does not affect the possible evaluation in other studies of hydroxychloroquine or lopinavir/ritonavir in non-hospitalized patients or as pre- or post-exposure prophylaxis for COVID-19," the organisation noted.
After four months of clinical trials, WHO experts said that remdesivir was currently the most effective of all tested drugs.
On Saturday, It was reported that global COVID-19 cases had risen by 212,326, a record increase in 24 hours, to bring the estimated worldwide total of those infected to at least 11,100,000. There have been at least 527,827 deaths as a result of the pandemic to date, with a 5,134 increase over the past 24 hours.