U.S. health regulators have paused Eli Lilly’s trial of an antibody treatment for COVID-19 over potential safety concerns. It was confirmed on Tuesday that regulators paused enrollment in the leading late-stage trial of monoclonal antibody treatment for the coronavirus. Details regarding the safety concern are not yet known. A review from the independent data and safety monitoring board will be completed before further action is taken. According to spokeswoman Kathryn Beiser, Eli Lilly said it supports the decision by an independent monitoring board to “cautiously ensure the safety of the patients participating in this study.”
The ACTIV-3 trial was set up to test the Eli Lilly-developed monoclonal antibody in combination with remdesivir. Monoclonal antibodies are made to act as immune cells that scientists hope can fight the virus. A blood sample from one of the first U.S. patients who recovered from COVID-19 was used for the experimental antibody treatment. President Donald Trump received a monoclonal antibody treatment made by Regeneron along with remdesivir earlier this month.
The ACTIV-3 trial is one of several ongoing trials, which are part of the National Institute of Health’s “Activ” program set up to accelerate development of COVID-19 vaccines and treatments. The trial is supported by Operation Warp Speed, a Trump administration effort to make and distribute vaccines to fight COVID-19.
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