FDA OKs Eli Lilly's COVID Antibody Therapy for Children, Newborns
The Food and Drug Administration has cleared the use of Eli Lilly's COVID antibody therapy for children, including newborns.
Eli Lilly's COVID antibody therapy, which has recently been granted an FDA emergency authorization for children, is a combination of two monoclonal antibodies known as bamlanivimab and etesevimab, according to The Hill report.
The two monoclonal antibodies are administered together through intravenous infusion. Eli Lilly's COVID antibody therapy was earlier authorized by FDA for children ages 12 and older, weighing at least 88 pounds.
Patrizia Cavazzoni, director of the FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, said that all patients at high risk of severe COVID, including children and newborns, have the option for treatment and post-exposure prevention.
More than 700,000 patients received the treatment after FDA granted its emergency authorization in February.
However, Cavazzoni said that the therapy is not a substitute for vaccination.
COVID Antibody Treatments
Antibody treatments from Regeneron and Eli Lilly are used by physicians to keep patients out of hospitalizations. However, those antibody treatments may need to be modified if the Omicron COVID variant becomes widespread.
Dr. Dana Hawkinson, infectious disease director at University of Kansas Health System, said that when Alpha was circulating, Eli Lilly's authorization was pulled out as it did not work against the variant, according to a Fox 4 News report.
Hawkinson added that when Delta came back, they found that they have seen activity with those monoclonal antibodies.
Researchers said that antiviral drugs, such as new pills from Merck and Pfizer, appear to be unaffected by Omicron because they target a different part of the virus that has not mutated yet.
Vir Biotechnology and GlaxoSmithKline's monoclonal antibody COVID treatment was reported to be fighting against the variant well, according to a CNBC report.
Vir President and CEO George Scangos said that it is certainly an effective antibody against COVID, as well as SARS and other coronaviruses.
Scangos noted that he thinks they have an antibody that stands up well to all the COVID variants. In addition, the company official said that it can possibly help in future coronavirus pandemics as well.
Scangos assurance on the effectiveness of the monoclonal antibody came after companies announced contracts to sell $1 billion worth of their antibody, which is sotrovimab, to the U.S. government.
The FDA granted its emergency use authorization to sotrovimab in May to treat mild to moderate COVID infections in adults and children.
Meanwhile, AstraZeneca's COVID antibody shot is more than 80 percent effective successful at preventing disease over six months.
The company said in a statement that the injected therapy called AZD7442 or Evusheld was found to provide 83 percent protection. This treatment is used for people who do not respond well to vaccines, according to a Mirror News report.
Researchers said that the results were found despite the surge in the Delta variant during trials.
Those who do not respond well to COVID vaccines include those with blood cancers, patients on dialysis, and those on immunosuppressive drugs for certain conditions.
The company said in a statement that there had been no cases or serious illness among people given the drug in a six-month trial.
This article is owned by Latin Post.
Written by: Mary Webber
WATCH: Eli Lilly starts first study of potential COVID-19 antibody treatment - from Reuters
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