ELI LILLY COMBO THERAPY FOR COVID CUTS SERIOUS ILLNESS, DEATH: STUDY
Eli Lilly and Co. said that its combination antibody therapy to fight COVID-19 cut the risk of hospitalization and death by 87% in a study of more than 750 high-risk COVID-19 patients, Carl O’Donnell and Michael Erman reported for Reuters.
It is the second large, late-stage study to show that combination therapy of two antibodies, bamlanivimab and etesevimab, is effective at treating mild to moderate cases of COVID-19. The previous study, which published data in January, used a higher dose of the drugs and reduced the risk of hospitalization by 70%.
“I expect this data to continue to drive more utilization” of the antibodies,” said Daniel Skovronsky, chief scientific officer at Eli Lilly.
“We have few other diseases where we have drugs that can offer this magnitude of benefit.”
US regulators authorized the combination therapy in February for use in COVID-19 patients 12 and over with a high risk of developing serious complications. European regulators greenlighted its use in March.
The US agreed in February to purchase a minimum of 100,000 doses of the combination treatment. Regulators authorized bamlanivimab alone for use against COVID-19 last year and the U.S. government agreed to purchase nearly 1.5 million doses.