Regeneron begins human testing of COVID-19 antibody cocktail
by Deena Beasley/Reuters
(Reuters) – Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc on Thursday said it has begun human testing of its experimental antibody cocktail as a treatment for COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.
The trial has an “adaptive” design and could quickly move from dozens of patients to eventually include thousands, Chief Scientific Officer George Yancopoulos told Reuters.
“If it goes perfectly well, within a week or two we will move to the second phase. Within a month or so of that we will have clear data that this is or isn’t working. By the end of summer, we could have sufficient data for broad utilization.”
Regeneron shares rose about 2% in early trading.
The dual antibody, called REGN-COV2, is being compared with a placebo treatment in hospitalized COVID-19 patients, and in COVID-19 patients who have symptoms but are not sick enough to be hospitalized. Regeneron also plans to study REGN-COV2 for preventing the infection in people at high-risk of exposure – such as healthcare workers – and in uninfected people with close exposure to someone who has tested positive for the virus.