KIRKLAND — EvergreenHealth is launching the next arm of clinical research studying the anti-viral drug Remdesivir as a potential treatment for COVID-19. The trial is known as the Adaptive COVID-19 Treatment Trial (ACTT), sponsored by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), was the first clinical trial launched in the United States to evaluate an experimental treatment for COVID-19.  

ACTT III is a randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled trial evaluating the combination of two drugs – Remdesivir and interferon beta-1a, a drug often used to treat multiple sclerosis – compared to treatment with Remdesivir alone. All patients receive Remdesivir but are randomized into two groups: one will be treated with Remdesivir as well as an interferon beta-1a injection, while the second group is treated with an IV of Remdesivir paired with a placebo injection.

“The first two phases of the Adaptive COVID-19 Treatment Trial have produced promising outcomes, and our team is focused on continuing our contribution to this significant body of research in the ongoing fight against COVID-19,” said Jeff Tomlin, MD, CEO of EvergreenHealth. “We know research is essential to treating and preventing the virus that causes COVID-19, and we remain dedicated to advancing clinical research to potentially identify an effective treatment.”

According to Remdesivir manufacturer, Gilead, and the NIH, results from ACTT I, which included 1,063 participants across 68 global trial sites, showed that hospitalized patients with advanced symptoms of COVID-19 who received Remdesivir recovered 31% more quickly than those who received the placebo. Results also suggested a survival benefit, with a mortality rate of 8% for the group receiving Remdesivir versus 11.6% for the placebo group.

Following the initial promising results of ACTT I, the second arm of the trial, ACTT II, provided all enrolled patients with Remdesivir while also introducing the anti-inflammatory drug Baricitinib, to study the combination of the two drugs as treatment for COVID-19, compared to treatment with Remdesivir alone.

Kirkland-based EvergreenHealth was the first site on the West Coast, and the second site globally, to enroll qualifying patients in ACTT in partnership with the NIH’s Division of Microbiology and Infectious Disease (DMID). Normally an eight-to-12-week onboarding process, the hospital was able to launch the trial on March 7, within only six days of initiating collaboration with DMID partners.

EvergreenHealth continues to screen hospitalized COVID-19 patients to determine if they are eligible to participate, working through the consent and enrollment process with patients and their families.

“I’m continually inspired by the diligence and commitment of our physicians, providers, pharmacists, researchers and staff members to carry out these research efforts quickly and effectively,” said Dr. Diego Lopez de Castilla, EvergreenHealth infectious disease physician and lead investigator for the ACTT trial. “We are incredibly grateful for the patients and families who have contributed to this research, helping to advance clinical trials—without them, none of this would be possible.”

EvergreenHealth is currently hosting more COVID-19 treatment clinical trials than any other hospital in the region, with seven interventional trials under investigation and 200 patients enrolled across the COVID-19 interventional study portfolio. In addition to the seven interventional trials, the organization also has several retrospective chart review studies underway to evaluate and fine-tune current standard-of-care practices.  

Learn more about EvergreenHealth Research Services and its ongoing clinical trials at www.evergreenhealth.com/clinical-trials.

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