Experimental drug improves 7-year-old Josh Hardy's health

By Kyle Johnson,

Just a week and three doses of an experimental drug have vastly improved the health of a young child who previously was close to death.

After striking a deal with the Food and Drug Administration, pharmaceutical company Chimerix agreed to provide its drug brincidofovir to 7-year-old Josh Hardy, reports CNN. The drug is used to treat the adenovirus, which often attacks people with weakened immune systems.

The levels of the virus have dropped from 250,000 copies per milliliter to only 367 copies, with the likelihood the virus could be gone by sometime next week. Aimee Hardy, his mother, said, "I'm beside myself with how effective this drug was so quickly."

Before getting the drug, Hardy was struggling with heart and kidney failure, on top of constantly throwing up blood. With the drug, Hardy is now only left with the damage done to his kidneys - from other drugs he was on. He could potentially need to remain on dialysis for the rest of his life.

As previously reported, Chimerix had said it would not provide the drug to the dying boy because if Hardy dies while on the drug, it could hurt the chance of the drug being approved in the future and being available for others. Plus the company has to pay since the drug isn't covered by insurance.

But the FDA and Chimerix were able to strike a deal where it would provide the drug through "compassionate use" and be allowed to study Hardy and anyone else who requests the drug.

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