Miracle drug or murder drug?
You’d be hard-pressed to find a more controversial drug than this one. Remdesivir (RDV) earned it’s spot as one of the most hated, or loved, drugs of the covid era.
In this article, I will lay out the evidence (or lack thereof) used to push for the use of this drug. By the end, you will be well-positioned to make up your own mind on whether this drug should have ever been prescribed.
Before we get into that, we need to go over what exactly this drug is.
RDV was originally created in 2009 by Gilead Sciences. It is what’s known as a “broad spectrum antiviral.” This isn’t an uncommon thing, as unusual as it sounds. Broad spectrum antibiotics and antifungals are common. Antivirals to this point remain a mystery to Big Pharma.
RDV was made to treat hepatitis C and RSV, two common viruses. When it didn’t work on either of these, Gilead shifted to exotic diseases. They investigated use in Ebola virus, for example. They milked this until approximately 2020.
Long story short, there were no other uses for this drug besides extremely uncommon and lethal diseases like Ebola and Marburg virus.
Gilead kept a small amount of remdesivir in stock and expanded production as needed. This is likely because it had no use except in rare cases. It’s expensive and unnecessary to maintain. It also allows them to increase the price by increasing the scarcity.
In January 2020, Gilead announced it was flying its entire stock of RDV to California. It also began to spin up their production facilities. At the time, they had 100 kg of the drug left over from the Ebola epidemic. What lucky timing!
Gilead also announced they had developed new manufacturing methods which allowed them to cut the production time from 12 months to 6 months. They restarted production in January 2020.
The drug would go on to be approved by the FDA for the use in first hospitalized patients, then outpatients, and eventually children in April 2022.