WASHINGTON, Aug. 3 (Xinhua) -- American pharmaceutical firm Eli Lilly and Company on Monday announced the start of its phase 3 trial to study whether one of its experimental COVID-19 antibody treatments can prevent the virus infection in residents and staff at U.S. long-term care facilities.
An employee works in an unit dedicated to the production of insulin pens at the factory run by pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly in Fegersheim, eastern France, on October 12, 2015. (Photo: AFP)
LY-CoV555, the lead antibody from Lilly's collaboration with Canadian biotech AbCellera, is a neutralizing antibody against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.
More than 40 percent of coronavirus deaths in the United States linked to long-term care facilities, which creates the urgent need for therapies to prevent COVID-19 in this vulnerable population, Eli Lilly and Company said in a release.
The first-of-its-kind study is expected to enroll up to 2,400 participants who live or work at facilities that have had a recently diagnosed case of COVID-19 and who are now at a high risk of exposure.
It will evaluate the efficacy and safety of LY-CoV555 for the prevention of SARS-CoV-2 infection and COVID-19, testing whether a single dose of LY-CoV555 reduces the rate of SARS-CoV-2 infection through 4 weeks, as well as complications of COVID-19 through 8 weeks, said the company.
"COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on nursing home residents," said Daniel Skovronsky, Lilly's chief scientific officer and president of Lilly Research Laboratories, in a statement. "We're working as fast as we can to create medicines that might stop the spread of the virus to these vulnerable individuals."