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Less than a month after it was announced, the MORU-led COPCOV study has made quick progress and expects to begin enrolling participants by the end of April.

Nick White

There are currently no proven vaccines or drugs for the prevention of COVID-19. Led by Co-Principal Investigators Nick White and Will Schilling, the COPCOV study is a double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled trial that will enrol 40,000+ frontline health care workers and staff from Europe, Africa and Asia who have close contact with COVID-19 patients to determine whether chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine are effective in preventing COVID-19.

Sponsored by Oxford, COPCOV is funded by a grant by the COVID-19 Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome and MasterCard Therapeutics Accelerator.

Nick and Will are joined by COPCOV Investigators Nick Day, Bob Taylor, Phaik Yeong Cheah and James Callery from MORU; Mahidol FTM Dean Asst Prof Weerapong Phumratanaprapin; Prof Yoong Poovorawan (Chulalongkorn); LOMWRU’s Liz Ashley and Mayfong Mayxay; COMRU’s Paul Turner and Arjun Chandna; Piero Olliaro (NDM); Dr Dora Buonfrate (Sacro Cuore Don Calabria Hospital, Italy); Prof Martin Llewelyn (Brighton and Sussex Medical School, UK), and OUCRU Director Prof Guy Thwaites

After being enrolled in the study and giving their fully informed consent, each participant will be randomly selected to receive either chloroquine or a placebo (in Asia) or hydroxychloroquine or a placebo (in Europe and Africa) for 3 months. Half the participants will receive the drug, half will receive a placebo. Neither the study team nor the patient will not know if the participant is taking the drug or a placebo.

MORU’s first COVID-19 response pages are now up on our website. We'll be adding soon COPCOV and the SEB-COV study protocols, FAQs and study sites, and news releases and updates as they come up.

The current pages include Nick White explaining COPCOV’s rationale and aims and COPCOV at a glance, which includes a video of Phaik Yeong Cheah explaining what happens when you enrol in COPCOV.

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PLATCOV researchers find dramatic acceleration of SARS CoV2 viral clearance rates since Sept 2021

Running continuously since Sept 2021, the PLATCOV trial has randomised over 1700 patients presenting with COVID19 infections. Work by PLATCOV’s Dr Phrutsamon Wongnak published in the Lancet Infectious Diseases has shown that rates of oropharyngeal viral clearance have accelerated dramatically since the trial started: A SARS CoV2 viral clearance half-life in untreated patients of around 16 hours In Sept 2021 had reduced to around 9 hours by Oct 2023. The results highlight the importance of pharmacometric platform trials like PLATCOV, so that we are prepared for the next pandemic.