Tayside and Central Scotland

Coronavirus: Dundee University to run first Scottish-led Covid-19 drug trial

Sample testing Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Patients will be asked to take part after they have been diagnosed with Covid-19

Dundee University is to run the first Scottish-led trial into a drug which aims to tackle the symptoms of Covid-19.

Researchers at the university will trial brensocatib, which is being developed to treat lung inflammation in Covid-19 patients.

The team will investigate whether the drug can stop the disease attacking the lungs, reducing injury and preventing the need for mechanical ventilation.

Volunteers will be sought from May.

Biopharmaceutical firm Insmed will provide funding and clinical drug supply for the STOP-COVID19 trial.

STOP-COVID19 is one of a number of studies to have been given urgent public health research status by the Department of Health and Social Care.

The trial will recruit 300 volunteers from 10 UK hospitals, with patients offered the chance to participate immediately after their diagnosis.

Half of the group will receive brensocatib as well as regular hospital care, while the other half will be given a placebo.

Previous trials have shown that brensocatib reduces inflammation in the lungs of people with underlying lung conditions.

Trial leader Prof James Chalmers said: "High rates of patients requiring ventilation and overwhelming intensive care unit capacity has been a major cause of excess deaths around the world.

"We hope that brensocatib can put a brake on the devastation this disease causes, to literally stop Covid-19 when it begins attacking the lungs."

More on this story