Monoclonal Antibody Infusion for COVID-19
Therapy for High-Risk COVID-19 PatientsThe U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an emergency use authorization (EAU) for the following monoclonal antibody therapies for the treatment of mild-to-moderate COVID-19 in adult and pediatric patients.
Who can receive monoclonal antibody therapy?
Adult patients (over age 16) must meet the following criteria:
- Weigh at least 88.19 lbs.
- Must have tested positive for COVID-19 within the last 10 days
- Mild to moderate symptoms
- Have one of the following additional criteria:
- Body mass index (BMI) more than or equal to 35
- Chronic kidney disease
- Immunosuppressive disease or receiving immunosuppressive treatment
- People over 65
- People over 55 with underlying conditions such as obesity, kidney disease, cardiovascular disease and immunodeficiency.
Casirivimab and imdevimab are not authorized for patients who are hospitalized or require oxygen therapy due to COVID-19.
If I meet the criteria, can I schedule an appointment?
Individuals 12 years and older who are high-risk, that have contracted or been exposed to COVID-19, are eligible for this treatment. Learn more about appointments at floridahealthcovid19.gov.
How safe are monoclonal antibody therapies?
As of January 2021, Memorial Hospital Pembroke has provided monoclonal antibody infusions to an initial 300 patients who have high-risk factors for developing severe COVID-19 symptoms. Of these high-risk patients, only eight have needed to be admitted to the hospital post infusion. An outpatient treatment center next to the Emergency Department at the hospital has been set-up, where a team of nurses and doctors are infusing qualifying COVID-19 patients with Casirivimab and Imdevimab, by Regeneron.
According to the FDA, the safety and effectiveness of both therapies is still being investigated, but previous clinical trials have shown that they can reduce COVID-19-related hospitalizations or emergency room visits in patients who are at high-risk of the disease progressing.
Casirivimab and imdevimab are investigational therapies, and there are limited clinical data available. Serious and unexpected adverse events may occur that have not been previously reported with casirivimab and imdevimab use.
Datasource: Monoclonal antibody infusion therapy
How does monoclonal antibody therapy work?
- Antibodies are proteins that the immune system produces to fight viruses, like SARS-CoV-2—which causes COVID-19.
- Monoclonal antibodies are produced in a lab but they function like the ones found in the body naturally.
- Therapies have now been developed that use the lab-made antibodies to treat people who test positive for COVID-19 and have mild to moderate symptoms.
- These monoclonal antibodies target the "spike" protein of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which it uses to bind to and enter human cells.
- By attaching to the spike protein, the antibodies block the entry of the virus into these cells.