Saint Louis University (SLU) has joined the race assess the efficacy of remdesivir in COVID-19 patients. Participating in the Phase III, multicenter, adaptive randomized blinded controlled trial they are one of dozens of critical research centers in the United States (and beyond) assessing the anti-viral medication originally targeting Ebola. Only hospitalized patients at SSM Health Saint Louis University Hospital can participate. SLU’s participation is spearheaded by the Center for Vaccine Development.
As of this writing, Missouri experienced a spike in SARS-CoV-2 cases totaling 1,327 while 14 have passed away due to the pathogen. Nationwide, the total number of cases rose to 188,592 with the death toll crossing 4,000.
Infectious Diseases Clinical Research Consortium
SLU is part of this elite investigator site network established by NIAID under Dr. Anthony S. Fauci’s leadership to not only mobilize a sophisticated research apparatus but also establish a readiness to respond to the contagion with agile and tailored clinical trials. This network leverages the NIAD’s long-standing Vaccine and Treatment Evaluation Units (VTEUs) while establishing a consortium leadership group while injecting $29 million for seven years to support the network.
SLU has been a member in the VTEU program since 1989 and has fully embraced its responsibility to contribute to taking on this public health crisis.
The study is funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and participants must at least be 18. The participating patient is given either the investigational therapy or a placebo while in the hospital at SSM Health SLU Hospital. Once released the patient participates in two follow up sessions at SLU Center for Vaccine Development. Led by principal investigator Dr. Sarah George, noted to the St. Louis Business Journal that the need for a treatment around the nation and within the region was imperative.
SLU Center for Vaccine Development
SLU’s Center for Vaccine Development was established to accomplish a number of goals from help educate about disease prevention to conduct full clinical trial programs to combat health care costs by infectious disease prevention. The team includes the center’s Clinical Director Sharon Frey, MD and founder Robert Belshe, MD.
Dr. Sarah George, Associate Professor, Infectious Diseases, Allergy, and Immunology
Call to Action: If you have a family member hospitalized in SSM Health Saint Louis University Hospital with COVID-19 and they fit the eligibility criteria, then consider contacting the SLU’s Center for Vaccine Development.