Singapore to test antibody treatment against COVID-19 in humans

Bangkok, Jun 11 (efe-epa).- Singapore will start next week the first phase of a human clinical trial of an antibody treatment against COVID-19, which has killed more than 412,000 people worldwide.

In a statement, Singaporean pharmacist Tychan, creator of the treatment, said the trial will be conducted at the SingHealth medical research center and will take about six weeks to assess safety and tolerance in humans.

Scientists hope that the antibody, identified as TY027, can slow the progression of the disease and speed recovery, while providing temporary protection against infections caused by the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus.

If this first phase is successfully passed, Tychan will request authorization to conduct a more extensive clinical trial.

So far, no antibody treatment or vaccine for the new coronavirus has been developed in the world, said the pharmaceutical company, which is owned by Temasek, the state investment arm of Singapore.

The president of the company’s board of directors, Teo Ming Kian, stated that, while it will be months before it is known whether the treatment is effective, they are optimistic about the experience they have of other antibodies that they have developed in the past against Zika and Yellow Fever.

“What we want is not just to help people around the world to avoid the devastating effects of COVID-19, but to better prepare ourselves for the next unfortunate outbreak of an infectious disease from the lessons of developing therapies against each outbreak,” Teo said.

Recently, US pharma company Eli Lilly began a human trial of an antibody against coronavirus and announced that it will test another in July.

Using antibodies to treat this virus has been an idea for months, as researchers in the Netherlands in May identified a human monoclonal antibody that prevents the SARS-CoV-2 virus from infecting cultured cells.

In addition, at least 124 vaccines for COVID-19 are currently in development, according to data from the World Health Organization (WHO), and at least a dozen of them are already in the phase of clinical trials.

Major pharmaceutical corporations working on the development of coronavirus vaccines have pledged not to seek profit for the duration of the pandemic.

In total, more than 7.2 million cases of coronaviruses have been registered in the world, according to the WHO, with 412,583 deaths confirmed by this organization as of June 11. EFE-EPA


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