Merck reported that molnupiravir significantly lowered the risk of hospitalization or death for mild-to-severe COVID-19 patients, according to a press release by Merck on Friday.

  • Molnupiravir is an oral ribonucleoside analog that has been determined to limit SARS-CoV-2 replication. In past research, the investigative drug has depicted activity in various pre-clinical models of SARS-CoV-2 response.
  • Meanwhile, Merck and Ridgeback will be looking for an indication similar to antivirals given EUA in the past for treatment and prevention of severe outcomes related to COVID-19.
  • The interim analysis revealed molnupiravir lowered the patient risk of COVID-19 hospitalization or death by nearly 50%. Around 7.3% of patients to receive molnupiravir experienced either outcome compared to 14.1% of patients administered a placebo. 
  • The analysis further showed that no patients to receive molnupiravir had died through 29 days post-randomization compared to 8 patients to receive placebo.

Merck has signed a procurement deal with the federal government this year to supply nearly 1.7 million molnupiravir courses to the US upon EUA or FDA’s approval. MRK up +7.79%.