Fujifilm asks Japan to approve Avigan as a COVID-19 treatment

Oct. 20, 2020

FujiFilm Holdings Corp. has asked Japan’s regulator to approve Avigan as a treatment for COVID-19. 

The company pointed to results from a late-stage study involving 156 patients with non-severe symptoms. During the trial, patients taking Avigan recovered after 11.9 days compared to 14.7 days for patients who received a placebo.

Avigan (favipiravir) has already been approved as an anti-flu treatment and is currently being studied in at least 16 clinical trials around the world.

Fujifilm already ramped up production of Avigan after Japan’s government asked it to triple the amount of the drug in the country’s strategic national stockpile. 

Ministry sources have reported that Japan is expected to deliver a decision about approval within a month. If approved, it be the third drug in Japan given the regulatory go-ahead to treat COVID-19, alongside Gilead’s Remdesivir and dexamethasone.

Read the full Reuters report.