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Regeneron's Antibody Cocktail Could Be Used to Treat as Well as Prevent COVID-19, Finds Study

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 13 Oct 2020
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Image: Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 (Photo courtesy of NIAID)
Image: Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 (Photo courtesy of NIAID)
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc.’s (Tarrytown, NY, USA) antibody cocktail has been found to be effective in reducing COVID-19 symptoms in rhesus macaques and golden hamsters prior to infection as well as after infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus, suggesting that REGN-COV2 may offer therapeutic benefits both as a treatment and as a preventative measure for COVID-19.

In studies conducted by researchers at the Texas Biomedical Research Institute (San Antonio, TX, USA), Regeneron’s COVID-19 antibody cocktail was administered to rhesus macaques and golden hamsters. In the first part of the study, the researchers injected healthy rhesus macaques with the SARS-CoV-2 virus and administered REGN-COV2 three days later to see if the treatment had any impact. The group of monkeys who had received the antibody cocktail treatment prior to infection showed far fewer symptoms compared to the control group and also had a much lower viral load.

In the second part of the study, the researchers administered REGN-COV2 to some rhesus macaques after they were infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus and found that the antibody cocktail treatment reduced their symptoms as well as resulted in faster viral clearance. Similar experiments performed on golden hamsters revealed that administering REGN-COV2 two days before they were infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus greatly reduced their symptoms. Hamsters who were administered REGN-COV2 after being infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus also exhibited a reduction in symptoms and faster viral clearance. Based on these findings, the researchers have suggested that Regeneron’s antibody cocktail, REGN-COV2, could offer therapeutic benefits as a treatment as well as preventative measure for COVID-19.

Separately, Regeneron’s CEO Leonard Schleifer has said that the company’s experimental drug cocktail for the treatment of COVID-19 “does” create immunity, although it was not known how long the immunity would last. In an interview with CBS News, Schleifer said REGN-COV2 could provide immunity against COVID-19 for months or even years.

“Could be months, could be years,” said Schleifer. “If you get it in our vial, if you will, that’s probably going to last you for months.”

Related Links:
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Texas Biomedical Research Institute

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