Corona vaccinations have one catch: you do not protect immediately. But a new antibody drug from the pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca could immediately make you immune to Covid-19. Researchers hope for approval soon.
At AstraZeneca, most people are likely to come to the Corona vaccine think that the British-Swedish pharmaceutical company developed with the University of Oxford – and which has already been approved in several countries. But AstraZeneca is researching another hope against that Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2.
This is a drug that is intended to prevent Covid 19 disease in people who have been exposed to the coronavirus immediately after administration. According to experts, the active ingredient with the name AZD7442 could mean an important addition to the approved vaccines and in the Corona-Pandemie help save many people’s lives.
AstraZeneca drug against corona: good addition to vaccination?
Because even if vaccinations can make an important contribution to ending the corona pandemic, they still have a catch: As a rule, they only take effect after several weeks and the protection therefore only begins with a delay. Especially if like with Biontech-Active ingredient for full protection two vaccinations are necessary, there is still a risk of serious illness for some time. That from University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (UCLH) and AstraZeneca Corona drug developed, however, would immunize immediately.
The principle behind the preparation: AZD7442 uses a combination of two long-lasting antibodies that were taken from recovered Covid-19 patients and produced in the laboratory. who SARS-CoV-2 was directly exposed, could be saved by the active substance from getting sick with Covid-19.
“Exciting addition” in the fight against the virus
“If we can show that this treatment works and prevents people exposed to the virus from getting COVID-19, it would be an exciting addition to the arsenal of weapons being developed to fight this terrible virus,” he said the virologist Dr. Catherine Houlihan from University College London Hospitals NHS Trust (UCLH), who is leading a study called Storm Chaser on the drug AZD7442, quoted in the British newspaper “The Guardian”.
AstraZeneca began volunteering with support from the US government in late August. The third and decisive phase III of the study began in mid-October with more than 1,100 test subjects. In this last phase, the active ingredient should be checked for effectiveness and safety.
Also tested on people with a weakened immune system
The researchers involved hope for an emergency approval as early as the spring, should the drug prove to be effective and safe in the study. According to the Guardian, for example, nursing home residents or patients in hospitals could be treated with it.
The London UCLH is also investigating in a further phase III study whether the potential corona drug is also used in those affected with weakened immune system could be used that cannot be vaccinated because of cancer or another immune-weakening disease.
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