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Regeneron says antibody cocktail likely weakened by Omicron variant

By HealthDay News
Regeneron says antibody cocktail likely weakened by Omicron variant
Regeneron warns that its antibody cocktail for treatment of COVID-19 may have a weaker response against the Omicron variant of the coronavirus. File Photo by Debbie Hill/UPI | License Photo

Regeneron Pharmaceuticals said Tuesday that its antibody cocktail, which is used widely to treat COVID-19 patients, may be less effective against the Omicron variant.

The company noted that prior analyses suggest that its monoclonal antibody cocktail, and similar drugs, could lose effectiveness against the variant.

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Further research is ongoing, according to Regeneron, which added there is no direct data yet testing the new variant's resistance to immunity from monoclonal antibodies and vaccines.

The company did note that it is already testing the next generation of antibody treatments that might show greater potency against the Omicron variant.

Health officials consider monoclonal antibodies highly effective in preventing hospitalization among patients with mild to moderate COVID-19 if the therapy is given within seven to 10 days after symptoms appear.

The treatment -- typically administered through four injections or a half-hour infusion -- provides antibodies that quickly target the coronavirus while the body's immune system gears up to fight it, the Washington Post reported.

President Donald Trump was given Regeneron's antibody cocktail when he was infected with the virus in 2020. It is now widely available to the American public.

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More information

Visit the U.S. National Institutes of Health for more on COVID antibody treatments.

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