Clinical Trials

Treating COVID-19 with Immune Modulator Drugs

Topline results of a recent clinical trial showed that infliximab or abatacept “substantially improve[ed] clinical status and reduc[ed] deaths” in adult patients hospitalized with severe COVID-19. These drugs are often used to treat certain autoimmune diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, Crohn’s disease, and ankylosing spondylitis.

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FDA Authorizes Fourth Monoclonal Antibody Drug

Last Friday, the FDA authorized emergency use of Eli Lilly’s monoclonal antibody treatment, bebtelovimab, for treating mild-to-moderate COVID-19. Bebtelovimab has been shown to be highly effective against the Omicron variant, and is the fourth treatment made available for high-risk COVID patients. It has not been proven whether bebtelovimab can prevent severe disease, but trial data suggest that bebtelovimab may reduce viral replication when taken within 7 days upon onset of COVID-19 symptoms.

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FDA Expands Authorization Around Remdesivir to Treat COVID-19

On January 21, the FDA expanded the use of remdesivir to non-hospitalized adults and children who have mild-to-moderate COVID-19, who are at risk of severe disease. Previously, remdesivir was only available to hospitalized patients. This decision was based on a clinical trial including 562 participants with mild-to-moderate COVID-19, who had displayed symptoms within the previous 7 days and had at least one risk factor for severe disease.

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