Lilly’s arthritis drug and Gilead’s Veklury receive FDA authorization as combination COVID-19 treatment

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Shares of Eli Lilly & Co. gained 0.6% in premarket trading on Friday, the day after the Food and Drug Administration granted an emergency use authorization to the company’s rheumatoid arthritis drug Olumiant as a COVID-19 treatment if it’s used in combination with Gilead Sciences Inc.’s Veklury, which is also called remdesivir. The drug combination can be used in adults and children older than 2 years old who have been hospitalized with COVID-19 and require supplemental oxygen, mechanical ventilation, or extracorporeal membrane oxygenation. These tend to be the sickest COVID-19 patients. Lilly also recently received an emergency authorization for its COVID-19 antibody treatment, making it the only drug maker to receive EUAs for two different COVID-19 therapies so far during the pandemic. Data from a clinical trial found that the combination of Olumiant and Veklury can help speed up recovery times for some severely ill, hospitalized COVID-19 patients. Lilly’s stock is up 9.1% so far this year, while the S&P 500 has gained 10.8%.
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