Dow rockets on hope for coronavirus treatment touted by President Trump

Giving investors some hope there could be a coronavirus treatment solution that helps the country, and world, reopen faster from the widespread shutdowns that severely impacted the global economy, a report said the Gilead Sciences drug remdesivir has shown some effectiveness in treating the coronavirus. Stocks surged and the Dow rocketed nearly 700 points.

Fred Imbert for CNBC:

Gilead remdesivir a possible coronavirus treatment. Image: Closeup of COVID-19 coronavirusThe Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 697 points, or 3%. The S&P 500 traded 2.7% higher, while the Nasdaq Composite advanced 1.4%… Friday’s gain put the S&P 500 on track for its first back-to-back weekly gains since early February… Gilead shares jumped more than 7% after STAT news reported that a Chicago hospital treating coronavirus patients with remdesivir in a trial were recovering rapidly from severe symptoms. The publication cited a video it obtained where the trial results were discussed.

“An effective treatment is a huge deal and would create a path to open the economy and resume normal ‘social activities’ way sooner than a vaccine,” said Tom Lee, head of research at Fundstrat Global Advisors. “A treatment is safer and more scalable because it is only given to people who need to be treated.”

The stock market has rallied since March 23 as new coronavirus cases in the U.S. and globally showed signs of plateauing. President Donald Trump said Thursday that “our experts say the curve has flattened and the peak… is behind us.”

President Donald Trump called the drug remdesivir “promising” on March 18, 2020. It was originally created as a potential treatment for the Ebola and Marburg viruses. Trump has touted remdesivir and malaria drug hydroxychloroquine as “very exciting.” Both drugs are in clinical trials examining their effectiveness in treating the coronavirus. Remdesivir has shown some promise in treating both MERS and SARS, which are also caused by coronaviruses. Some medical professionals in the U.S., China and other parts of the world have been using both remdesivir and hydroxychloroquine in hopes that the drug can reduce the duration of COVID-19 the infectious disease caused by SARS-CoV-2 (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2).

Adam Feuerstein and Matthew Herper for STAT:

A Chicago hospital treating severe Covid-19 patients with Gilead Sciences’ antiviral medicine remdesivir in a closely watched clinical trial is seeing rapid recoveries in fever and respiratory symptoms, with nearly all patients discharged in less than a week, STAT has learned.

The University of Chicago Medicine recruited 125 people with Covid-19 into Gilead’s two Phase 3 clinical trials. Of those people, 113 had severe disease. All the patients have been treated with daily infusions of remdesivir.

Slawomir Michalak, a 57-year-old factory worker from a suburb west of Chicago, was among the participants in the Chicago study. His fever had spiked to 104 and he was struggling to breath. At the hospital, he was given supplemental oxygen. He also agreed to participate in Gilead’s severe Covid-19 clinical trial.

His first infusion of remdesivir was on Saturday, April 4. “My fever dropped almost immediately and I started to feel better,” he said. By his second dose on Sunday, Michalak said he was being weaned off oxygen. He received two more daily infusions of remdesivir and recovered enough to be discharged from the hospital on Tuesday, April 7.

“Remdesivir was a miracle,” he said.

MacDailyNews Take: Hopefully the trials prove remdesivir’s efficacy for COVID-19 treatment as we certainly need as many effective treatments as possible while the world await a vaccine!

See also: Antiviral remdesivir prevents disease progression in monkeys with COVID-19 — National Institutes of Health (NIH), April 17, 2020

45 Comments

  1. Earlier this year, President Trump moved the FDA to fast-track trials of remdesivir and hydroxychloroquine.

    Today, I want to share with you exciting progress that the FDA is making with the private sector as we slash red tape like nobody has ever done it before.…

    There are promising therapies produced by Gilead, and that’s remdesivir. That’s a drug used for other purposes that’s been out and has had very good results for other purposes, but it seems to have a very good result, having to do with this virus. And that drug also has been approved or very close to approved, in that case, by the FDA…

    So you have remdesivir and you have chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine. And I think it’s going to be very exciting. I think it could be a game changer and maybe not. And maybe not. But I think it could be, based on what I see, it could be a game changer. Very powerful. They’re very powerful.

    So I want every American to know that we’re doing everything we can. And these actions are important next steps.

    We believe these therapeutics and others under evaluation right now will be able to provide relief to many Americans. We really hope that’s going to be. This could be a tremendous breakthrough. Tremendous breakthrough. And we will work toward a much-needed vaccine in the future, as I said. And what we’re doing with the FDA is so exciting in so many other fields. So many things are happening. It’s a very exciting time for — for medicine.

    And we appreciate that the American public has pulled together… the American public has been incredible.President Trump, March 19, 2020

    If your fake news network of choice has spent the last month telling you that the president is a fool for calling the effects of remdesivir and hydroxychloroquine exciting and moving the FDA to fast-track trials of each, change the channel. You’re being lied to daily.

    1. If your fake president of choice has spent the last month boosting unproven “cures” like a snake oil salesman with only faint disclaimers that “I’m not a doctor…”, change your president.

      It’s not the fast-tracking of trials that makes him a fool…it’s the hucksterism and hardcore selling of possible treatments that may or may not prove to be useful in the long term. In the meantime, he has failed miserably to see to the things that we know would be useful, such as bringing the immense resources of the federal government to bear on developing effective tests and contact tracking in a timely manner.

      1. Ah, Brian Pukehardt – you go only believing your PMSNBC, MSDNC and your FNN. Hopeless Hilliary Clienton would have been an absolute disaster. Thank God for Trump and thank goodness he annoys the puke out of maroons like you.

        1. US intellegence agencies were aware that China was underplaying the virus before the end of November. They were briefing the political appointees on this during December, and it was in the President’s daily briefing no later than the first week in January. By roughly the middle of January, it was common public knowledge and widely reported that the virus was spreading rapidly in China and had begun to cross the borders.

          “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” There was absolutely no excuse at any point since the beginning of 2020 for any US policy maker to rely on information from China. Chinese misinformation has not been an excuse for American inaction anytime in the last 3.5 months.

          It took until the end of January until the Federal Government barred foreign nationals who had recently been in China, while continuing to admit tens of thousands of persons (US citizens, permanent residents, and family members) who posed no less of a threat. The Government later imposed a similarly porous “ban” on some countries in Europe.

          It has been widely reported, without any counter evidence, that the Federal Government completely botched the development of a testing program despite having advance warning. The President told us over a month ago that anyone who wanted a test could get one. That wasn’t true then, it isn’t true now, and it won’t be true for weeks or months to come. China had nothing to do with that.

          Despite having been put on notice—at the latest—in January, there were no discernible Federal efforts to acquire medical supplies such as Personal Protective Equipment until March, and almost no supplies were actually received until April. The latest unrevoked Federal advice to the states had been that they should rely on the central government to acquire and allocate supplies as and where they were needed. The states were not informed that they were on their own until the epidemic was well underway. China had nothing to do with that.

          I trust most Americans to remember Truman’s adage that the buck stops on the Resolute desk.

          1. “US intellegence agencies were aware that China was underplaying the virus before the end of November.”

            The Democrat rallying cry of today with complicit media mouthpieces is what USER is spouting daily.

            Specifically, say it loud enough and long enough to make a falsehood into a belief to denigrate President Trump — Political Disinformation 101.

            General statement: “intelligence agencies were aware” the devil is in the details. How many agencies involved, how many agents, low level swamp creatures or high level swamp creatures. Did they inform the President and if so, what was his response at the time, hmmm? No credible links, I see.

            I guess you are unaware the WHO worked with China to deny and delay information of the threat essentially saying it did not exist for weeks and their was no threat. This false propaganda was broadcast worldwide by the FAKE MEDIA parrots repeatedly early on that confused countries, politicians and citizens everywhere.

            I guess you are also unaware Dr. Fauci in January or February said their was nothing to fear.

            I guess you are also unaware the media in the same timeframe universally broadcasting worldwide the same meme their was nothing to fear.

            I guess you are also unaware at a press conference last week the president replayed the Democrat media and Dr. Fauci own words saying their was nothing to fear. Poetic justice, a master stroke by the president using the media’s own words against him. How dare he? 🤣

            I guess you are also unaware, “He (Dr. Fauci) also criticized that while human-to-human transmission of COVID-19 diseases erupted in China in mid-December, the communist regime told the U.S. and the rest of the world that the virus was only transmitted animal-to-human.” Full story here:

            https://www.the-sun.com/news/701688/coronavirus-dr-fauci-suggests-china-lied-outbreak/

            Tucker Carlson has more credibility in his toenail clippings then you have in your entire misinformation body…

            1. Your entire comment is one “alternate fact” after another.Just to pick one example, Dr. Fauci never said “there was nothing to fear.” He consistently said that the coronavirus was a major threat, with the potential to grow much, much worse. In one interview with the Today program, he was asked if people needed to social isolate. He said that as of that morning there was no compelling evidence of community spread in the US, so it was currently safe to go shopping or to the gym, but that could change quite quickly (in fact, the first confirmation of spread came later that same day from the Seattle area). That is the closest he ever came to saying what you claim he said.

              I could go on, but why bother?

      2. What happened at a Galveston County nursing home over the last week was one of the first big tests of hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID-19 patients in Texas.

        “I thought the risk of seeing 15% of that nursing home die was just not an acceptable,” said Dr. Robin Armstrong, MD, medical director at The Resort at Texas City.

        Fifty-six residents at this senior facility in Galveston County contracted the novel coronavirus. Dr. Robin Armstrong said 39 of them gave him permission to treat them with hydroxychloroquine pills.

        “Most of the patients have done well. And, you know, and I think that that is suggestive that the medication is helpful,” Armstrong told WFAA.

        But notice that Armstrong qualified his answer by saying “most of the patients.”

        “Well, I would say I would say all the patients have done well,” Armstrong added.

        On Sunday, those 39 patients finished five days of treatment with hydroxychloroquine. Dr. Armstrong said no one experienced any side effects.

        For the first time since this treatment began, many of those who have recovered from the virus have been able to go outside and get some fresh air over the last 48 hours, Armstrong said.

        https://www.wfaa.com/article/news/health/coronavirus/texas-elderly-hydroxychloroquine-coronavirus-treatment-texas-city/287-7383185c-940c-4cb2-82ea-c4a5ffad3ffb

        1. I’m very happy for these patients. However, this is still just anecdotal evidence that the malaria drugs might be safe and effective for general use. Without a control group and without testing on more than 39 patients, there is no way to know that they would have done worse without the drug. We are not told what happened to the seventeen patients who declined the trial. Without long-term follow up, it is clearly too early to say there were no side effects. Thalidomide was in use for over a year before anyone realized it caused birth defects. Some trials of these same drugs in Europe found serious, even potentially fatal, heart arythmias. The drugs may work, but it is far to early to claim certainty, much less laud them as a miracle cure that makes social distancing unnecessary.

          1. Guess you do NOT understand “first big tests of hydroxychloroquine” hmmm?

            So are you saying the doctors are wrong because preliminary results do not please your definition of success?

            Since when are you a medical expert, Mr. Democrat Denigrator of President Trump?

            Far from it, you’re NOT!…

  2. Stupid reporting on stock market news at the beginning of the day. It’s all turned around now.

    And that promising news from Gilead about remdesivir? Gilead threw a wet blanket over all the happy, happy, joy, joy news reports intended to inflate the market for a few moments.

    Here’s what they said yesterday after all the false hope news stories blared forth:

    << Gilead commented that, “the totality of the data need to be analysed in order to draw any conclusions from the trial,” in a statement to Reuters. A statement from the University of Chicago Medicine said that “drawing any conclusions at this point is premature and scientifically unsound.” >>

    https://www.cnbc.com/2020/04/17/gilead-drug-remdesivir-investors-should-be-cautious-analysts-says.html

    So, stuff that in your stock market ra-ra-ism and smoke it.

    1. Please do not expect the True Believers here to believe any medical or scientific information that is not from Dr. Trump. They made it clear months ago that they cannot distinguish between anecdotal evidence (“My cousin Vinnie got Drug X and he recovered”) and a double-blind clinical study with both a test group and a control group large enough to be statistically significant. When the drug company itself is urging caution about a report that boosts its own stock price, that should suggest that enthusiasm may be premature. Encouraging news, which this is, is not an excuse for relaxing the measures that are currently in force.

      1. By the way:

        The Roosevelt was a closed system where the presence of 4,800 people on the ship and the necessity of carrying on at-sea operations meant the option of retreating to the fainting couch and binge watching Netflix was not an option. From the time the virus probably came aboard until the vessel docked in Guam, 13 days elapsed. At the end of 13 days, about 100 sailors were showing sufficient symptoms to warrant testing. Now, two weeks after quarantine went into effect, and mandatory testing implemented, we know that 655, or about 13% of the the Roosevelt’s crew carried the virus. Less than 1% of those with the virus (6) required hospitalization.

        …The rate of transmission was nothing near an exponential one, in fact, it was barely arithmetic. In the time elapsed between the introduction of the virus and the first man testing positive, there were at least five days in which some 4,800 odds and sods on the USS Theodore Roosevelt lived and worked and socialized in very close quarters with no options to avoid personal contact…they probably didn’t even wear face masks to go about their work. From this experiment, we know that Wuhan is nowhere nearly as virulent as many of the alleged models have told us.

        The fact that less than one percent of people infected required hospitalization explains both why certain governors were howling for the Army Corps of Engineers to build them brand new hospitals, and why the hospital facilities deployed to those states returned basically unused.

        Also of note is that under a mandatory testing regime, some 60% of the population infected showed no symptoms. We don’t know what percentage of the 40% had symptoms that were so mild that they would never have bothered to seek medical care. If that number is extrapolated to the United States, it means that millions and millions of people have been infected and recovered without even knowing it.

        The story of the Roosevelt and the Wuhan virus is much bigger than one Navy captain with a rather bloated sense of self-importance. It shows us that the virus is not as virulent as we’ve been led to believe. It shows that in a population that is relatively healthy (we don’t know anything about the health history of the only fatality, 41-year-old Chief Petty Officer Charles Robert Thacker Jr.) the number of people requiring hospitalization is very small. Rather than use bullsh** models to drive public policy, we should consider using actual facts.

        What the Wuhan Virus on the USS Theodore Roosevelt Tells Us About What We Should Do Next

        1. We already knew that the infection and mortality rate for the virus was markedly lower for young people in excellent health with good nutrition, spotless living quarters, and top-notch medical care. It would be hard to find a group that fits that description better than the crew of a US Navy warship. It simply does not translate to the general population, where the median age is 38, and a significant slice of the populace is not healthy or well-nourished and does not receive regular preventive medical care.

          Obviously, that reality does properly drive public policy.

          1. Similarly, doctors do not base their advice on using sunscreen for patients with Northern European ancestry on the risk to African-Americans, since the incidence of skin cancer is 28 times higher in persons with fair skin. Basing health policy for all Americans based on the least susceptible subgroup would be nonsense, just like basing coronavirus policy on serving military personnel, rather than on more typical Americans.

            1. Mr. Medical Expert statistics in your last two posts is easily available on the internet anyone can obtain.

              “Obviously, that reality does properly drive public policy.”

              Obviously, count another daily dig at the Trump administration…

            2. If the facts I cited are correct, why are you criticizing me? Are you saying that public policy should NOT be based on readily accessible facts? Nobody generalizes about skin cancer based solely on data from dark-skinned individuals, and nobody should generalize about Covina-19 based on a single warship crew.

              I said nothing about the Trump Administration. Despite the odd remarks of the Chief Executive, the main thrust of their official policies since about March 17 have been pretty reasonable. The policies advocated by First and some others here are distinctly not. That was what I was talking about.

      2. “Please do not expect the True Believers here to believe any medical or scientific information that is not from Dr. Trump.”

        Can you be any more transparent “HERE” on your daily briefings to Denigrate President Trump totally in lockstep with the biased media to spread political disinformation and deny him a righteous reelection?

        Answer: Not possible!

        That paragraph speaks volumes about who you are and who you are not. Simply beautiful to bare it live for all to see.

        We know what to expect from you until Election Day and I will remind the rest of the class. My advice, stock up now on plenty of tissues…🤣

  3. The market baby received a piece of candy and felt happy for a bit.

    Meanwhile the 2nd most populous country is technically in recession space. 1st time in 40 yrs. Add China and US to that party and the real news is….

    In the US has consumption is down 50%…things aren’t being made/fixed, etc. A very elemental sign pointing to a “meek” GDP.

      1. That’s because CitizenX and his ventriloquist doll applecynic have been very quiet of late, they haven’t been guzzling or emitting the usual amount of gas they’re usually wafting in our direction. Ah, the blessed wins you get from bad situations, you take your wins where you can.

  4. Unless it stops the spread of the virus, notably in the asymptomatic phase, then it’s not really going to change things much.
    Prevention is better than cure. Something the leadership of the USA failed to do.

  5. Recent information suggests if you start early enough basic oxygen through a CPAP device can help prevent the extreme symptoms developing that lead to Intensive care and ventilation. This is because there is evidence that the serious damage to a patient is through minute blood clots developing in the lungs through the imune system over reacting to the threat and causing extensive damage not only to the lungs but by secondary damage to the other organs through lack of oxygenated blood. Now more testing needs to be carried out to confirm this but two things are of note. Firstly I note you say supplementary oxygen is given during these trials. Secondly you have to be very careful to claim the success of any trial until full understanding of what is happening us ascertained as is made clear by the very company carrying out the trial you refer to. Claiming unproven results for the almost exclusive purpose of stoking up the markets or personal propaganda really is unacceptable exploitation of the true facts while creating new invented ones for personal gain. Everyone should be careful in both avoiding that themselves and questioning it when others do it with no experience or knowledge of the actual truth. Or is that too reasonable to ask?

  6. We’ll know alot more in the next few months. Having said that, the data seems to indicate that the TB vaccine, BCG is effective at stimulating the immune system in fighting Covid-19. Mortality rate in countries that vaccinate are significantly lower than countries that don’t.

    Interestingly, if you look at some country pairs, like UK-Ireland, Sweden-Norway, Spain-Portugal, you get some eye-opening results. Those 3 pairs are neighbors and the first in each pair does not vaccinate, while the second does. Spain’s mortality rate is 6.5x Portugal’s. Sweden’s mortality rate is 5x Norway’s. The Uk’s mortality rate is 2x Ireland’s. Of course, these aren’t perfect comparisons, but the differences are huge.

    Look at US-Mexico. They vaccinate, we don’t. The mortality rate in the US is 28x that of Mexico’s.

    The data is so intriguing that studies are being done all over the World. Mass General and Harvard Med are doing a 4000 person study right now.

    Aggregated stats with countries that do vaccinate vs countries that don’t, seem to indicate 10x lower mortality in countries that do. That’s potentially a game-changer.

    We need a bridge treatment until a vaccine is approved 12 to 18 months from now. If the TB vaccine works to lower infection severity and mortality; and then one of the antiviral drugs like Remdesivir or other, can reduce mortality in serious cases, that could be what we need until a vaccine is approved. That’s a big deal.

    1. God knows where you get you information from. I grew up in the U.K. and was vaccinated with BCG when I was a kid.
      Please, please let the professionals determine what is the right treatment. Gilead’s drug may work ( after all it is an anti-viral). It is clinical trials that have to demonstrate the effectiveness of an approach. Pulling one price of data that may not be reproducible does not work. It’s like throwing a dice once, getting six and saying that all sides of a dice is has a six on it. You need to have sufficient data that make the correct conclusion.

      1. First, where did I say anything about not letting the professionals determine the right treatment? Harvard Medical School and Mass General are at the very top in US healthcare. They’re doing a study right now on BCG. I didn’t say Gilead’s drug exclusively, since quite a few antivirals are being tested. Only that we need a bridge treatment until a vaccine is approved. I wrote, “then one of the antiviral drugs like Remdesivir or other”. English may be my 2nd language, but that should be clear enough.

        Clinical trials? Did you even read my post? I mention that they’re doing a clinical trial at Harvard Med and Mass General.

        As for the “once piece of data”, they looked at the same data, and came to the same conclusion, we need to trial BCG. Trials are being done in the Netherlands, Australia and other countries. They’re all looking at the same country data.

        Just not understanding how you assume my post doesn’t want to wait for trials. My first sentence is, “we’ll know more in a few months”, because that’s when we’ll get the data back from the trials that are currently on-going.

      2. NO, your point is LAUGHABLE political disinformation out of context to denigrate President Trump tirelessly, post after post carrying Democrat’s water to deny a Trump reelection.

        What has changed is not couching it or implying it any longer — coming right out to expose your motives. Good to read you are getting exasperated and desperate.

        Like I said, stock up now on a supply of tissues… 😭

  7. Americans are very grateful for the stupidity of the Demonrats and anti trumpers! Their stupidity has guaranteed a trumps reelection!!

    Biden for President. Senility and stupidity for all!!

    1. “When the president embraces the tactics of a monarch, it becomes incumbent on Congress to wield the constitutional power it has to stop it. Congress, representing the voice of the people, should use every tool available to prevent the president from subverting the rule of law. When the president usurps the legislative power and defies the limits of his authority, it becomes all the more imperative for Congress to act. And Congress should use those powers given to it by the Constitution to counter a lawless executive branch — or it will lose its authority. … A presidential temper tantrum is not an acceptable means of discourse.”
      Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX), 2014

      “For the Republican Party to support Donald Trump is like buying a ticket on the Titanic after watching the movie.”
      Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC), 2016

        1. That was my point exactly. Somebody who is only concerned with the abuse of government power before he wins an election is an opportunist, not a conservative. Principles that a man drops when it is inconvenient are not principles at all.

      1. Dd wrote and you can’t stand it so quick to respond to every post that supports the president. Too obvious, we got your number.

        “Americans are very grateful for the stupidity of the Demonrats and anti trumpers! Their stupidity has guaranteed a trumps reelection!!”

        Amen!

        I’ll take a “monarch” first time politician that turned the economy around to record numbers in record time you are too partisan BLIND to see.

        Certainly preferable to a preachy PC Nobel Prize non-professor who doubled the national debt in eight years and told us those prosperous days were gone and “I have no magic wand.”

        Democrats, code for DO NOTHING positive or constructive except complain about the other team are increasingly irrelevant.

        They have only themselves to blame…

        1. Democrats, libturds, etc etc. I like how Trump lovers are such deep thinkers and spew Fakespeak. I laugh how this is their response to measured thinking and writing by TXUser.
          I work in the vaccine field and am part of the effort. I go to work With my team everyday for that very reason. I know firsthand the problems that can arise without proper testing, skewed and biased result. Some drugs can fail after going as far as phase 2 testing.because the number of people tested are increased. Also, you get to see the side effects.
          Everyone understands that it is risky to buy the first model of anything because only a few have been tested at the company vs. a 100,000 tested after consumers bought them. Drugs for back pain that were found to cause heart attacks for example.

          I am NOT preaching to Republicans. I am angry at those Trump worshippers. They have stopped being republicans years ago and represent all what is wrong with the US today. Trump dropped the ball here with his lack of testing. People are dying needlessly because of this. Plain and simple.

  8. Was also reading an article about how protesters that want the country to open up are yelling crap to health care workers things like:
    “Land of the free. Go to China if you want communism,”.
    They are demeaning one one hand, what the wjhole country have been calling American heroes.
    Really.
    I assume you Fakespeak Trump lovers are ok with that?
    I would hate to be labeled an American hero…….

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