Novartis halts malaria drug trial amid participant shortfall

Covid-19Novartis halts malaria drug trial amid participant shortfall


Novartis halts malaria drug trial amid participant shortfall

Swiss drugmaker Novartis is halting its trial of malaria drug hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) against COVID-19 after struggling to find participants, it said on Friday, as data emerged from other studies raising doubts about the drug’s efficacy.

Novartis’ trial began in April and sought to test the drug in 440 hospitalized patients. But the project only managed to recruit a handful.

“The recruitment challenge facing our hydroxychloroquine trial has made it unlikely that the clinical team will be able to collect meaningful data in a reasonable time frame to determine the efficacy of hydroxychloroquine in treating patients with COVID-19,” Novartis said in a statement.

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