Health

China urgently approves the first drug to treat Covid-19


On December 9, the regulator approved the monoclonal antibody therapy for the treatment of Covid-19, developed by Tsinghua University, Shenzhen 3 People’s Hospital and Brii Biosciences.

A monoclonal antibody is a protein that attaches to the mutant protein of nCoV, reducing the ability of the virus to invade body cells.

The newly approved drug contains two neutralizing monoclonal antibodies, BRII-196 and BRII-198. Scientists prepared by cloning in the laboratory and combining antibodies from recovered Covid-19 patients in China.

The drug, administered by intravenous infusion, can treat some high-risk cases of severe progression. The clinical trial showed that the therapy reduced the risk of hospitalization and death by 80% in Covid-19 patients.

As reported by Chinese media last month, the therapy has been used for many F0s in local outbreaks.

Brii Biosciences in November filed a license application with Chinese and US regulators after completing the phase 3 clinical trial. According to Mr. Summer Li, Director of Public Relations, the company hopes to be approved. emergency use agreement in the US. If licensed, Brii Biosciences targets this market (in addition to the domestic market), while prioritizing countries that have been clinical trial sites such as Brazil, South Africa, Mexico, Argentina and the Philippines.

Medical workers instruct people to take PCR tests in Beijing, December 2020. Photo: Reuters

China is the latest country to approve monoclonal antibody therapy to treat Covid-19. On the morning of December 9, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) also approved a similar therapy from AstraZeneca for people with Covid-19.

Academician Zhong Nanshan, a leading respiratory disease expert and an adviser to the Chinese government on Covid-19, said that an important factor for the country to consider reopening is finding an effective treatment. . According to him, the specific criteria if you want to return to normalcy is to maintain the Covid-19 mortality rate at 0.1%, the virus transmission coefficient (the number of people infected from the same F0) is 1. -1.5.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, a medical adviser to the White House, in August once described monoclonal antibody drugs as “an underutilized measure” in the fight against Covid-19, and wanted everyone to receive it. advantages of this method.

The medication should be given as early as possible, ideally within three to four days of the first symptoms appearing. This is the time when the virus is multiplying rapidly in the body, taking the medicine in time makes a big difference.

Thuc Linh (Follow AFP)

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