Fauci says leak concerns fueled his White House revelation of Gilead drug results

Fauci says leak concerns fueled his White House revelation of Gilead drug results

National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Dr. Anthony Fauci attends a coronavirus response meeting at the White House, April 29, 2020.

Credit:

Carlos Barria/Reuters

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Concerns over leaks compelled the top US infectious disease official, Dr. Anthony Fauci in the Oval Office on Wednesday, to reveal positive data on Gilead Sciences experimental drug remdesivir, the first in a scientifically rigorous clinical trial to show benefit in treating COVID-19.

The dramatic announcement by Fauci prompted concerns among scientists that the Trump administration was raising hopes about a coronavirus treatment before sharing the full data with researchers.

As a cautionary example of inflating the potential value of a therapy, some pointed to President Donald Trump’s repeated endorsements of malaria drug hydroxychloroquine as a treatment, with no evidence that it works.

Newer data suggests the malaria treatments may carry significant risks for some sufferers of the respiratory disease caused by the virus.

Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), which is running the trial, said he took the first opportunity to get the word out that patients taking a dummy treatment or placebo should be switched to remdesivir in hopes of benefiting from it.

He expressed concern that leaks of partial information would lead to confusion. Since the White House was not planning a daily virus briefing, Fauci said he was invited to release the news at a news conference with Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards.       

“It was purely driven by ethical concerns,” Fauci told Reuters in a telephone interview. “I would love to wait to present it at a scientific meeting, but it’s just not in the cards when you have a situation where the ethical concern about getting the drug to people on placebo dominates the conversation.”         

An independent data safety and monitoring board, which had looked at the preliminary results of the NIAID trial, determined it had met its primary goal of reducing hospital stays.

On Tuesday evening, that information was conveyed in a conference call to scientists studying the drug globally.    

“There are literally dozens and dozens of investigators around the world,” Fauci said. “People were starting to leak it.” But he did not give details of where the unreported data was being shared.       

Several scientists interviewed by Reuters felt the White House setting seemed inappropriate for the release of highly anticipated government-funded trial data on the Gilead therapy.

They had expected it to be presented simultaneously in a detailed news release, a briefing at a medical meeting or in a scientific journal, allowing researchers to review the data.    

Information from various trials of remdesivir has been leaked to media in recent weeks. In a statement on Wednesday, Gilead said the NIAID’s much anticipated trial had met its primary goal, but gave no details.

Data in a separate NIAID statement after Fauci spoke detailed preliminary results showing that patients who got the drug had a 31 percent faster time to recovery than those who got a placebo, cutting hospital stays by four days.

The trial also came close to showing the drug helped people survive the disease, but the data fell just short of statistical significance.

“I want to see the full data. I want to understand the statistics. I want to understand the benefit and risk. I want to understand the structure of the study, and all of it,” said Dr. Steven Nissen, the chief academic officer at the Cleveland Clinic.

“Am I encouraged from what I’ve heard? Yes, I’m encouraged. But I want to get a full understanding of what happened here, and not get it via a photo opportunity from the Oval Office.”     

Data Gilead released on its own trial of remdesivir drew less attention, as it did not compare outcomes between those receiving therapy and those who did not.

Results from a third study in China suggesting remdesivir failed to help COVID-19 patients were released in the British medical journal the Lancet after review by a peer group of scientists.        

“That’s the only thing I’ll hang my hat on, and that was negative,” said Dr. Eric Topol, director and founder of the Scripps Research Translational Institute in La Jolla, California.    

He was unimpressed by remdesivir’s modest benefit.

“It was expected to be a whopping effect,” Topol added. “It clearly does not have that.”    

At the Oval Office news conference, Fauci compared the study findings to AZT, the first drug to show any benefit against HIV, decades ago.    

“We know that was an imperfect drug. It was the first step,” Fauci said in the interview.

“Similar to AZT, it’s (remdesivir) the first baby step towards what hopefully will be a number of better drugs that will come in and be able to treat people with COVID-19.”

By Julie Steenhuysen/Reuters

J. R’Mani – El Presidente lyrics

Yeah…
Alright…
Uh…
Yeah…

Bitch please
Your only job is down on your knees 
Only nigga to start off a verse like this
I’m such a beast…
Shout out to the A
Bitches let me motor B
Cuz they C
I’m de hated
But F it 
I’m rated G…
Ok now…
Oh nigga I feel so good up in this bitch
She eyeing me like a freak hoe
Would up in this bitch
Ma niggas we reppin deep mode
Hood up in this bitch
I’m so rebel I might put in the whole 
Wood up in this bitch…
Huuuhhhh!!!!…
Niggaz hatin
But fuck em homie I’m cakin
Mind on paper making
My time spent on vacating
Bitches gimme love
So that’s pussy accumulating
Lames be fakin
Smiling like  Clay Aiken
But I know they be aching…
Tryna get in ma shoes
Dying to make ma moves
Funny, most of these fools
On my grind they used to snooze
Bitches front with the cunt
Now I hit em by the twos
I’m just kickin back, sipping on that booze
Can’t lose…

Nigga I’m on… Like street lights
Standing tall… I do it all
Bitches wanna reprimand… 
Who…
Me…
Yup..
Cuz I keeps it President…
Yeah I keeps it President…
Boi my real is evident…
Up in this bitch like elephants…
On… Like porch lights
Been ready, Fit for this
You niggas just force ripe
Now watch me run this course right
I keeps it President…
Yeah I keeps it President…
All about my Benjamins
You niggas just irrelevant…

Step up in my Oval Office
Rebel leer force, Clear ports 
Up in my pockets
Rule the world like a Fugee
One mic, one plan and a few Gs
Just enough to make you love the new me
Bitch you never knew me…
This executive shit we on
Retired
My niggas living life so young
Bitches saying he the one
When I pass by
They shaking ass bwoy
Summin like we up in K. O. D
Make em see cash fly…
Don’t ask why…
I like my ladies Nas-ty
The type to bust me down on the way home
While I’m eating smash fries…
Rebel til my last ride
Levitation living cuz I’m pass fly…
Better than them motherfuckin last guys
Watch me shit, don’t ask fly…
I am the Master
Disciplining you bitches…
Still my wish is to elevate all my riches…
Not ever burning my bridges
So fuck you haters and snitches
Just witness the illest negus in the business…

Nigga I’m on… Like street lights
Standing tall… I do it all
Bitches wanna reprimand… 
Who…
Me…
Yup…
Cuz I keeps it President…
I keeps it President…
Boi my real is evident…
Up in this bitch like elephants…
On… Like porch lights
Been ready, Fit for this
You niggas just force ripe
Now watch me run this course right
I keeps it President…
Yeah I keeps it President…
All about my Benjamins
You niggas just irrelevant…

Vince Staples – Bagbak (Big Fish Theory Album)

This is for my future baby mama
Hope your skin is black as midnight
I’ll take you out that Honda
I can put you in a Benz
I can balance out your chakras
Fornication is a sin, we can fuck all night regardless
Our father art in heaven, as I pray for new McLarens
Pray the police don’t come blow me down ’cause of my complexion
Everybody think they know me now
‘Cause I’m chicken-checkin’
Negro, you are not my homie
How dare you think it’s different
Boy, you trippin’

Gas break ‘n dip, the cash came, I flipped
And stacked that, yeah I stacked that past the ceiling
So sacrilegious, don’t ask to chat
And don’t ask for pictures, bagbak I’m trippin’
(Bagbak, better back, back, you don’t know me)
(Better bagbak, better back, back, you don’t know me)
(Better bagbak, better back, back, you don’t know me)
(Bagbak, better back, back, you don’t know me, homie)

Boy I’m buoyant, we are
Floating on them peons
Go in ’til they take my bro’nem out them CDCRs
Prison system broken, racial war commotion
Until the president get ashy, Vincent won’t be votin’
We need Tamikas and Shaniquas in that Oval Office
Obama ain’t enough for me, we only getting started
The next Bill Gates can be on Section 8 up in the projects
So ’til they love my dark skin
Bitch I’m goin’ all in

Gas break ‘n dip, the cash came, I flipped
And stacked that, yeah I stacked that past the ceiling
So sacrilegious, don’t ask to chat
And don’t ask for pictures, bagbak I’m trippin’
(Bagbak, better back, back, you don’t know me)
(Better bagbak, better back, back, you don’t know me)
(Better bagbak, better back, back, you don’t know me)
(Bagbak, better back, back, you don’t know me, homie)

They found it
Depth close to 3, 230 feet
A deep dive, but within acceptable range

Clap your hands if the police ever profiled
You ain’t gotta worry, don’t be scary ’cause we on now
Ain’t no gentrifying us, we finna buy the whole town
Tell the one percent to suck a dick, because we on now
We on now, we on now
Tell the one percent to suck a dick, because we on now
Tell the government to suck a dick, because we on now
Tell the president to suck a dick, because we on now
We on now
We on now
Tell the one percent to suck a dick, because we on now
Tell the president to suck a dick, because we on now
Tell the government to suck a dick, because we on now
We on now
We on now
We on now
We on now
We on now
We on now
We on now
We on now

Vince Staples – Bagbak

[Verse 1]
This is for my future baby mama
Hope your skin is black as midnight
I’ll take you out that Honda
I can put you in a Benz, I can balance out your chakras
Fornication is a sin, we can fuck all night regardless
Oh father, oh the heavens, as I pray for new McLarens
Pray the police don’t blow me down cause of my complexion
Everybody think they know me now
Cause I’m chicken-checkin’
Negro, you are not my homie
How dare you think it’s different
Boy, you trippin’

[Hook]
Gas break, I dipped
The cash came, I flipped
I stack that, yeah I stack that past the ceiling
So sacrilegious, don’t ask to chat
And don’t ask for bitches, bagbak I’m trippin’
Bag-bagbak, bagbak you don’t know me better
Bag-bagbak, bagbak you don’t know me better
Bag-bagbak, bagbak you don’t know me
Bag-bagbak, bagbak you don’t know me homie

[Verse 2]
Boy oh boy and we are
Floating on the Dions
Go until they take my bro and em out them city CRs
Prison system broken
Racial war commotion
Until the president get that, shit Vincent won’t be votin’
We need Tomikas and Shaniquas in that Oval Office
Obama ain’t enough for me, we only getting started
The next Bill Gates can be on Section 8 up in the projects
So today, love my dark skin
Bitch I’m goin’ all in

[Hook]
Gas break, I dipped
The cash came, I flipped
I stack that, yeah I stack that past the ceiling
So sacrilegious, don’t ask to chat
And don’t ask for bitches, bagbak I’m trippin’
Bag-bagbak, bagbak you don’t know me better
Bag-bagbak, bagbak you don’t know me better
Bag-bagbak, bagbak you don’t know me
Bag-bagbak, bagbak you don’t know me homie

[Interlude]
They found it
Depth close to 3,230 feet
A deep dive, but within acceptable range

[Verse 3]
Clap your hands if the police ever profile
You don’t gotta worry, don’t be scared because we own ya
Ain’t no gentrifying us, we finna buy the whole town
Tell the one percent to suck a dick, because we on now
We on now, we on now
Tell the one percent to suck a dick, because we on now
Tell the government to suck a dick, because we on now
Tell the president to suck a dick, because we on now
We on now
We on now
We on now
We on now

RiFF RAFF – Test Drive Lyrics

[Verse 1: RiFF RAFF]
It’s the tan Peter Pan, pecan sedan
Butterscotch boss, butterscotch Vans
Watch me spend them grands, watch me run up them bands
Bright wristlet, left blank disc
Reveal what she missed, pour a six in my Sunkist
Now watch me pass the time, Rolex with lemon-lime
Lemon pepper, lemon garlic table salt
Drop the top smoking Lamborghini leg lock
I made a hundred grand today, and it wasn’t even payday
Salmon serpent soup, now I’m Babe Ruth
I used to hoop, with crushed jewels on my tooth

[Hook: Wiz Khalifa]
It feels good riding ’round like it’s a test drive
It feels good rolling up the weed to get high
It feels good hanging out with the gang all night
It feels good knowing that everything’s all right
It feels good, good, good
It feels good, good, good
It feels good, good, good
It feels good, good, good

[Verse 2: RiFF RAFF]
On Versace walkie-talkies, in the Oval Office
Dust my shoes off like Dustin Hoffman
Jumped off the Buick like Bon Jovi
Codeine in my coffee, keep these haters off me
Them grands I spend often, higher than a flying saucer
Look who it is, the butterscotch Herschel Walker
When it rained on Biscayne, codeine tears on window pane
40 days 40 nights, wall clean, Oreo cream soda
Syrup in my soda keeps the chip off my shoulder
Every year I get older, my wrist get colder
My chain keeps changing weather, it’s bipolar
JODY HiGHROLLER

[Hook: Wiz Khalifa]
It feels good riding ’round like it’s a test drive
It feels good rolling up the weed to get high
It feels good hanging out with the gang all night
It feels good knowing that everything’s all right
It feels good, good, good
It feels good, good, good
It feels good, good, good
It feels good, good, good

RiFF RaFF – Test Drive (feat. Wiz Khalifa)

[Verse 1: RiFF RAFF]
It’s the tan Peter Pan, pecan sedan
Butterscotch boss, butterscotch Vans
Watch me spend them grands, watch me run up them bands
Bright wristlet, left blank disc
Reveal what she missed, pour a six in my Sunkist
Now watch me pass the time, Rolex with lemon-lime
Lemon pepper, lemon garlic table salt
Drop the top smoking Lamborghini leg lock
I made a hundred grand today, and it wasn’t even payday
Salmon serpent soup, now I’m Babe Ruth
I used to hoop, with crushed jewels on my tooth

[Hook: Wiz Khalifa]
It feels good riding ’round like it’s a test drive
It feels good rolling up the weed to get high
It feels good hanging out with the gang all night
It feels good knowing that everything’s all right
It feels good, good, good
It feels good, good, good
It feels good, good, good
It feels good, good, good

[Verse 2: RiFF RAFF]
On Versace walkie-talkies, in the Oval Office
Dust my shoes off like Dustin Hoffman
Jumped off the Buick like Bon Jovi
Codeine in my coffee, keep these haters off me
Them grands I spend often, higher than a flying saucer
Look who it is, the butterscotch Herschel Walker
When it rained on Biscayne, codeine tears on window pane
40 days 40 nights, wall clean, Oreo cream soda
Syrup in my soda keeps the chip off my shoulder
Every year I get older, my wrist get colder
My chain keeps changing weather, it’s bipolar
JODY HiGHROLLER

[Hook: Wiz Khalifa]
It feels good riding ’round like it’s a test drive
It feels good rolling up the weed to get high
It feels good hanging out with the gang all night
It feels good knowing that everything’s all right
It feels good, good, good
It feels good, good, good
It feels good, good, good
It feels good, good, good