Japan to Start Remdesivir Approval Procedures Shortly

Politics

Tokyo, May 2 (Jiji Press)--Japan's health ministry will shortly start the procedures to approve the antiviral drug remdesivir for treatment of coronavirus patients in the country, sources familiar with the matter said Saturday.

The move follows Friday's announcement by U.S. President Donald Trump that the country's Food and Drug Administration has authorized the emergency use of remdesivir, developed by U.S. pharmaceutical firm Gilead Sciences Inc. as an Ebola remedy, in COVID-19 patients.

If given the go-ahead, remdesivir would become the first recognized remedy for the respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus in Japan.

For remdesivir's authorization, the health ministry plans to apply a special approval system that allows for substantially shortened screening procedures on condition that the drug being examined has been approved overseas.

On Saturday afternoon, the government will hold a round-robin-style cabinet meeting for discussing a government ordinance revision that would be necessary for applying the special approval system to remdesivir, the sources said.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press