Scientists today announced the first effective treatment against the coronavirus — an experimental drug that can speed the recovery of COVID-19 patients — in a major medical advance that came as the economic gloom caused by the scourge deepened in the U.S. and Europe.
The U.S. government said it is working to make the antiviral medication remdesivir available to patients as quickly as possible. Stocks surged around the world on the news, with the Dow Jones Industrial average climbing more than 550 points, or over 2%, in the afternoon.
Remdesivir is an antiviral medication developed by the American biopharmaceutical company Gilead Sciences.
“What it has proven is that a drug can block this virus,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci, the U.S. government’s top infectious-disease expert. “This will be the standard of care.”