Experimental cocktail treatment given to President Trump could reduce COVID-19 symptoms, study confirms

Credit: CC0 Public Domain

In a new study, researchers found that the antibody cocktail given to President Trump was effective in reducing COVID-19 symptoms in animal models.

They reported their experiments that involved giving the treatment to test monkeys and hamsters.

The research was conducted by a team at the Texas Biomedical Research Institute and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

U.S. President Donald Trump made headlines when he announced on October 2 that he had tested positive for COVID-19.

He has made headlines again in recent days as he has declared himself to be virus-free.

His quick recovery came after the announcement that he had received an experimental antibody cocktail along with doses of vitamin D, zinc and heartburn medicine.

The experimental antibody cocktail he was given was provided courtesy of Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a company that has been conducting research into the use of such antibody cocktails as therapies for a host of viral infections, including COVID-19.

In the study, the team tested the antibody cocktail with rhesus macaques and golden hamsters.

They administered the cocktail (which they call REGN-COV2) to healthy rhesus macaques first. Prior research had shown that they can be infected by the SARS-CoV-2 virus but typically exhibit only mild symptoms.

Three days after receiving the cocktail, the monkeys were injected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus and then monitored to see if the treatment had any impact.

The researchers found that monkeys who had received the treatment prior to infection exhibited far fewer symptoms than a control group and had a much lower viral load.

The researchers then injected some of the monkeys with the cocktail after they were infected and found that doing so also reduced symptoms and resulted in faster viral clearance.

The team repeated the same experiments with golden hamsters. They found these animals were susceptible to COVID-19, but have much more severe symptoms, including major weight loss.

These findings suggest that the cocktail REGN-COV2 may offer benefits both as a treatment and as a preventative method for COVID-19.

One author of the study is Alina Baum from Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

The study is published in the journal Science.

Copyright © 2020 Knowridge Science Report. All rights reserved.