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Pharma shares rise as United States approves remdesivir as COVID-19 drug

Shares of the drugmaker Gilead Sciences rose 6% on Friday after its antiviral drug, remdesivir, became the first and only approved treatment for COVID-19 in the United States.

The U.S. health regulator’s approval on Thursday for its use in hospitalized patients came despite the World Health Organization last week saying the drug did not have a substantial effect on patients’ length of hospital stay or chances of survival in a global trial.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) backing signals its confidence in Gilead’s US-based study results, which showed the drug was able to cut time to recovery in patients, Piper Sandler analyst Tyler Van Buren said in a client note.

READ: COVID-19 complication rates far higher than for flu

Remdesivir has been available under an FDA emergency use authorization since May, after a study led by the National Institutes of Health showed it reduced hospital stays by five days.

Gilead Sciences Inc pharmaceutical company is seen after they announced a Phase 3 Trial of the investigational antiviral drug remdesivir in patients with severe coronavirus disease (COVID-19), during the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19)

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