Given the severity of the global COVID-19 pandemic, medical experts are focusing all their resources in developing a treatment or vaccine. In fact, there are several clinical trials currently underway with others already in their latter stages. Celltrion is the latest one to announce positive results from its experimental drug on animal subjects. It now plans to move on to human volunteers by July in Europe and will hopefully proceed to mass production in time to have an adequate supply by early 2021.

The South Korean Biopharmaceutical group is just one of many drugmakers that have confirmed major breakthroughs in their preliminary tests. According to Fox News, it was noted that the medication exhibited a complete viral load reduction, which could dramatically reduce the time it takes for a patient to recover from symptoms and complications brought about by the 2019 novel coronavirus.

The study observed a major improvement from body aches, cough, and runny nose a day after the start of treatment. Meanwhile, lung inflammation took a little longer to clear up at six days. Nevertheless, it does show a remarkable recovery rate compared to just regular care. On average, the full course of COVID-19 lasts up to 14 days or longer depending on the patient's overall health.

Celltrion head of research and development unit Kwon Ki-Sung stated that the company "has the capability to roll out mass production of the therapeutic antibody treatment once it is ready."

Meanwhile, Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) deputy director Kwon Jun-Wook explained: "It would be difficult to conduct clinical trials at home due to low number of new cases and we understand discussions are underway with European countries for trials."

Earlier this week, Gilead Sciences shared the results of its third phase of clinical trials for its antiviral medication remdesivir. Despite the earlier average findings shared by researchers commissioned by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the drugmaker claims that COVID-19 patients recovered a few days quicker than those who only received standard care.

coronavirus vaccine clinical trials
Clinical trials on vaccines against the new coronavirus COVID-19 were approved in Germany and launched in Britain Photo: AFP / Thibault Savary

Another recent major announcement related to the 2019 novel coronavirus came from Eli Lilly and Company. The American pharmaceutical firm confirmed it will also begin trials of its treatment in Australia.