U.S. trial of COVID-19 blood plasma halted after no benefit found

(Reuters) – The U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) said on Tuesday that it has halted a trial of convalescent blood plasma in the treatment of patients with mild-to-moderate COVID-19 symptoms as it was unlikely to benefit this group.

The NIH said its decision was based on the findings of an independent data monitoring board. (bit.ly/3rbOIdh)

FILE PHOTO: A health worker takes test tubes with plasma and blood samples after a separation process in a centrifuge during a coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccination study at the Research Centers of America, in Hollywood, Florida, U.S., September 24, 2020. REUTERS/Marco Bello

The health agency’s move comes less than two months after an international trial of convalescent plasma was halted as no benefit was found. Other studies conducted in India and Argentina have also found no apparent benefit for those severely ill with the disease.

The U.S trial had enrolled 511 of 900 participants, who were either given blood plasma from recovered COVID-19 patients or a placebo.

A recent analysis indicated no significant difference in the proportion of patients who needed emergency treatment, had to be hospitalized or died within 15 days of entering the trial, NIH said.

Reporting by Manas Mishra in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber


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