LONDON, March 31, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Accord Healthcare Ltd, the principal European subsidiary of Intas Pharmaceuticals and the largest supplier by volume of generic medicines to the NHS, is collaborating on a large multi-national study into the prevention of COVID-19 infection using hydroxychloroquine, a drug that may have an effect in preventing and/or reducing symptoms of COVID-19, in line with the WHO's targeted research priorities. The global COPCOV (chloroquine / hydroxychloroquine prevention of COVID-19 in the healthcare setting; a randomised, placebo-controlled prophylaxis) study involves 40,000 frontline healthcare workers who are caring for COVID-19 patients and is planned to start shortly.
COPCOV will be led by UK scientists from the University of Oxford and funded by the Wellcome Trust; the study pools the resources of international experts* across multiple continents. Accord will provide up to two million tablets of hydroxychloroquine to the trial, free of charge, along with two million tablets of matched placebo.
Dr William Schilling, co-lead investigator, Research Physician and Infectious Diseases/ Microbiology Registrar, Mahidol Oxford Tropical Medicine Research Unit, Thailand explains what prompted the rapid initiation of this global trial: "We are in a race against time to find effective treatments and preventive measures as the COVID-19 pandemic grows. What we already know is that chloroquine has antiviral activity against SARS-CoV-2 in cell culture, as it does for the related SARS-CoV."
Professor Sir Nicholas White, Wellcome Trust Principal Fellow and consultant physician at the University of Oxford continues: "The hypothesis for this study is that chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine might both slow viral replication in exposed subjects, attenuating or preventing the infection. There is extensive experience with these well-established drugs in the prevention and treatment of malaria and rheumatological conditions. We need to find out urgently in a large definitive study if they can prevent COVID-19. If they do prove effective, then they would be a readily deployable and affordable preventive measure for high risk individuals such as healthcare workers."
Dr James Burt, Executive Vice President, Europe and MENA said: "I am extremely proud that Accord is leading the way and playing an important part in the current COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to providing scientific advice, our teams are working around the clock, in challenging times, to manufacture the required hydroxychloroquine and matching-placebo for this vital study. This is a great demonstration of Accord's mission to provide essential medicines to people in need, helping to make things better for healthcare professionals on the frontline, patients and society in general."
Notes to Editor:
- *The MORU Tropical Health Network, which hosts the 'Thailand Wellcome Africa and Asia Programme', conducts targeted clinical and public health research that aims to discover and develop appropriate, practical, affordable interventions that measurably improve the health of people living in resource-limited parts of the world https://www.tropmedres.ac/
- Intas is the largest privately held Indian pharmaceutical company, which operates globally as Accord across 85+ countries from its Ahmedabad headquarters.
About Accord Healthcare
Accord UK is one of the fastest growing generic pharmaceutical companies in Europe (Accord Healthcare Europe). We have one of the largest market footprints of any European generic company selling generic medicines in over 80 countries around the world.
This global footprint enables us to deliver vital, affordable medicines worldwide, to the national health systems and patients who need them most. From our manufacturing operations in Harrow, Fawdon and Barnstaple and our distribution centre in Didcot, we supply one in five of the UK's generic medicines.
Our approach is agile and inventive, always seeking to improve our products and patients' access to them. We're driven to think differently and deliver more for the benefit of patients worldwide.
Accord, we make it better www.accord-healthcare.com
SOURCE Accord Healthcare; MORU