By Colin Kellaher

 

Merck & Co. on Friday said its Covid-19 pill developed with partner Ridgeback Biotherapeutics was effective against the Omicron variant in laboratory tests.

The Kenilworth, N.J., drugmaker said data from six preclinical studies show the antiviral drug, known as molnupiravir, was active against the fast-spreading Omicron variant in vitro.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration in late December authorized doctors to prescribe molnupiravir to adults at high risk of severe Covid-19 shortly after they develop mild-to-moderate symptoms as part of efforts to keep newly infected patients out of hospitals.

Pfizer Inc. earlier this month said its Covid-19 pill, Paxlovid, was also effective against the Omicron variant in laboratory tests.

 

Write to Colin Kellaher at colin.kellaher@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

January 28, 2022 07:27 ET (12:27 GMT)

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