DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Clinical trials involving synthetic antibodies are underway in North Texas, and they could lead to a potentially life-saving treatment for COVID-19 patients.
“I have been involved in multiple clinical trials since the onset of the outbreak in the united states, and I’ve never been excited this much,” said Dr. Mezgebe Berhe.READ MORE: 50K Veterans Impacted By 2-Week Closure Of Fort Worth VA Clinic Due To Burst Pipe Damage
Berhe is the principal investigator for two clinical trials sponsored by Regeneron at Baylor Scott and White Research Institute looking into monoclonal antibodies. One trial involves in-patients, but the other is an outpatient treatment.
“What these antibodies do is they attach to the spike protein of the virus and prevent it from adhering into the cell, or getting into the cell,” he said.
The treatment is administered through an IV. The idea is similar to using plasma donated by survivors, but Berhe says these antibodies are more targeted and they’re engineered in a lab.
“Not only is it a purified sort of therapy, we can also produce it in large amounts,” he said.READ MORE: FEMA COVID-19 Vaccine Site Opens At Globe Life Field In Arlington
Berhe said the goal is for the treatment to slow down the progression and help with recovery. For milder cases, it could potentially decrease your chances of spreading the virus. It’s hope that both patients and doctors need right now.
“Having treatments and interventions like this is going to be a game-changer,” Berhe said.
This is a double blind study, which means neither the patients nor researchers know who’s getting the treatment and who’s getting the placebo.
There’ s still a lot to be learned, and no real results to report just yet.MORE NEWS: Power Outages, Burst Pipes... Potholes Now A Concern After Historic Texas Cold Snap
Berhe says if the treatment does show a great benefit, it’s possible it could be fast-tracked and available to patients pretty quickly.