Regeneron COVID-19 antibody drug helps patients recover faster in early trials

A high dose of Regeneron’s experimental COVID-19 antibody drug caused the level of the virus to decrease in patients in an early clinical trial, which indicates it may help them recover faster, Regeneron said in a Sept. 29 news release.  

The antibody cocktail drug, called REGN-COV2, was tested in nonhospitalized COVID-19 patients. The full results of the phase 1 study will be released later, the drugmaker said. 

The trial seemed to show that the drug had a bigger effect on patients who were infected with COVID-19 but hadn’t created high levels of their own antibodies against the virus. The drug uses monoclonal antibodies, synthetic versions of the antibodies patients’ bodies create when they recover from a disease. 

“We are highly encouraged by the robust and consistent nature of these initial data, as well as the emerging well-tolerated safety profile, and we have begun discussing our findings with regulatory authorities while continuing our ongoing trials,” said George Yancopoulos, Regeneron’s chief scientific officer. 

Eric Topol, MD, director of the Scripps Research Translational Institute, told STAT that the results aren’t enough for the FDA to grant an emergency use authorization for the drug. 

“There’s nothing bad about these results, you just can’t say much about how transformative this is going to be,” he said. 

Read Regeneron’s full news release here.

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