Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), said concerns over possible leaks prompted officials to reveal data from an NIAID-led COVID-19 study on Gilead Sciences' experimental drug remdesivir, as reported in Yahoo!Finance.
Fauci also said he took the first opportunity to get the word out that patients taking placebo in the trial should be switched to remdesivir in hopes of benefiting from it.
"It was purely driven by ethical concerns," Fauci remarked, adding "I would love to wait to present it at a scientific meeting, but it's just not in the cards when you have a situation where the ethical concern about getting the drug to people on placebo dominates the conversation."
"There are literally dozens and dozens of investigators around the world," Fauci said, "people were starting to leak it," but he did not specify where the unreported data was being shared.
Steven Nissen, chief academic officer at the Cleveland Clinic, said "I want to see the full data. I want to understand the statistics. I want to understand the benefit and risk. I want to understand the structure of the study, and all of it."
Nissen added "am I encouraged from what I've heard? Yes, I'm encouraged, ut I want to get a full understanding of what happened here, and not get it via a photo opportunity from the Oval Office."
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