Scientists find new antibody treatment for COVID-19

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In a new study from the Technical University of Munich, researchers found a new treatment that could prevent serious illness in case of COVID-19 infections during the pandemic.

This would prevent the hospitalization of patients and thus ease the burden on the healthcare system.

The new form of treatment has proven highly effective against severe COVID-19 illness above all in persons with chronic conditions who do not respond sufficiently to an active vaccination.

With the current surge in patient numbers, especially in Bavaria, the experts believe that this treatment can benefit many people and should therefore be made widely available as quickly as possible.

The treatment basically consists of highly specialized antibodies that act as a “passive vaccination”. Neutralizing antibodies produced in the lab can deactivate—basically checkmate—the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

It can be injected intravenously or subcutaneously—in other words, under the skin. The antibodies fight viruses by preventing them from entering cells.

This stops them from multiplying. But according to experts, it is crucial for patients to receive the antibodies within seven days of the onset of symptoms, either as outpatients or while hospitalized. Only then can the treatment achieve its full potential.

Consequently, it is no longer beneficial if used later. Studies have shown that it is no longer the SARS-CoV-2 virus itself, but rather the overreacting immune system that causes the serious cases.

Especially people with chronic conditions or immune deficiencies can benefit greatly from the antibody treatment because they often show a weak response to an active vaccination, but still have a high risk of serious illness in case of a COVID-19 infection.

It can even be used as a preventive treatment or immediately after contact with SARS-CoV-2, which can be an important protection for persons with chronic conditions.

If you care about COVID treatment, please read studies about common diabetes drug could strongly cut COVID-19 death risk and findings of this very common drug for heart disease may reduce COVID-19 risk.

For more information about COVID and your health, please see recent studies about this drug holds promise as at-home treatment for COVID-19 and results showing that these 3 common antiviral drugs may effectively fight COVID-19.

The study is published in Dtsch Arztebl. One author of the study is Professor Dr. Christoph Spinner.

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