Professor Peter Horby, who is part of the University of Oxford’s national recovery trial, which aims to identify potential treatments for Covid-19, said “about three hospitals in the north” have started using the medication last weekend. He said the drug is due to be rolled out to 30 to 40 other UK hospitals next week.
He told BBC Radio 4’s Today program that the drug REGN-COV2 was “very promising” and “very potent”.
“The class of drugs, these artificial antibodies, have been around for a while now, and they’ve been used extensively in inflammatory conditions and cancers, and they’re pretty safe and well understood, and so the technology is something I think. that we trust, ”said Horby.
“This particular drug has probably been given, I think now, to four or five hundred patients, mild to severe patients in different trials, and so far there have been no worrisome safety signals.
“In the laboratory, in cell cultures, it has a very strong effect against the virus, and there have been studies on artificial animals where it also shows benefits. So, probably among the drugs available, this is one of the most promising.
Horby said that a single dose of the treatment provided prolonged protection for one month to six weeks, making it “very attractive to the elderly population”.
The cocktail of antibodies works by binding to a protein on the surface of the virus, which prevents the virus from attaching to cells and replicating itself while allowing the immune system to attack it.
Trump received the drug alongside remdesivir, an antiviral treatment that helps some coronavirus patients recover faster.
His wife, Melania, and one of his closest associates also tested positive for Covid-19 on Friday.