LONDON – After all the controversy and a huge dose of hype, there is no clinical benefit from the use of hydroxychloroquine in patients admitted to the hospital with COVID-19, according to headline data from a large randomized trial of potential drugs for the infection currently running in the U.K.

On June 5, the two chief investigators in the Recovery trial said the data “convincingly rule out any meaningful mortality benefit of hydroxychloroquine.”

A total of 1,542 patients were randomized to hydroxychloroquine and compared to 3,132 patients randomized to standard of care alone. There was no significant difference in the primary endpoint of 28-day mortality, with 25.7% of those in the active arm dying, vs. 23.5% of patients receiving standard of care (p=0.10). There was also no evidence of reduction in the length of hospital stay, or positive results for any other endpoints. There were no differences in response between male and female patients, or in different age groups.

 “We have therefore decided to stop enrolling patients to the hydroxychloroquine arm of the Recovery trial with immediate effect,” said Peter Horby, chief investigator at Oxford University.