November 30, 2021

Pfizer laboratory requests authorization of its pill against Covid-19 in the United States

The company says it has developed an antiviral effective against the disease as part of a five-day treatment. But the clinical data has yet to be reviewed by health authorities and independent experts.

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Pfizer announced that it had requested emergency authorization in the United States for its anti-Covid pill on Tuesday, November 16. This treatment is eagerly awaited because it can easily be taken at home in the first days after the onset of symptoms in case of infection. The pharmaceutical giant has filed this request with the United States Medicines Agency (FDA), the press release said. (in English).

This antiviral treatment, which will be marketed under the name Paxlovid, has been shown to be 89% effective against hospitalizations and death in clinical trials, when taken within three days of symptom onset. These trials were conducted by the company on people at high risk of developing a severe case of Covid-19. They ingested the drug every 12 hours for five days. However, we must remain cautious, because the studies have not yet been made public. The data must now be analyzed by the American authority.

“The overwhelming efficacy achieved in our clinical study of Paxlovid, and its ability to help save lives and keep people out of hospital if allowed, underscores the critical role that antiviral therapies can play in the battle. against Covid-19 “, assured the boss of Pfizer, Albert Bourla, quoted in the press release. Antivirals work by reducing the ability of a virus to replicate, thereby slowing down the disease. These treatments represent a key complement to vaccines to protect against Covid-19.

the Washington Post reported that the US government planned to announce this week (in English) the purchase of 10 million treatments. Pfizer has said it plans to invest up to $ 1 billion to manufacture and distribute Paxlovid. A voluntary license agreement was also announced with the Medicines Patent Pool (MPP). It is to allow generic manufacturers to produce the drug for supply to 95 middle and lower income countries.

>> Anti-Covid 19 pill from the Merck laboratory: “We should not expect a miracle drug”, estimates Professor Mathieu Molimard

The American laboratory Merck has also developed an antiviral treatment, molnupiravir, authorized in early November in a first country, the United Kingdom. Washington has already purchased 3.1 million treatments from Merck and an FDA committee is due to meet on November 30 to decide on the application for authorization of Merck’s treatment in the United States.