COVID-19 antibody study underway

Coronavirus Watch

EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WEHT)– A research company is doing a study in Evansville. They are providing rapid COVID-19 tests in return for a possible treatment study. It’s an antibody treatment is aimed at decreasing the amount of coronavirus patients in the hospital.

“In the Tri-State area we’ve had several individuals not survive COVID-19 because their lungs simply could not make it,” said Principal Investigator Dr. David Schultz, M.D.

Qualmedica Research is working with Eli Lilly to see if a certain antibody treatment will lower the recovery time for those who just came down with COVID-19 symptoms.

“The monoclonal antibodies attaches itself to the spikes which are on the COVID-19 particles and in doing so it reduces the COVID-19 ability to get inside your cells, ” said Dr. Schultz. He and the Qualmedica team are looking for patients who test positive for COVID-19 with early mild to moderate symptoms.

If chosen to be part of the study, patients will be given an I.V. feeding their system antibodies that have been made from one of the first people in the country to recover from the virus.

“So they use antibodies isolated from that particular patient and then they are manufacturing those antibodies as a whole,” said Executive Director of Qualmedica Research, Joe Wiegel.

These antibodies can be given in a higher dosage at once compared to convalescent plasma.

“This has some potential life saving abilities,” said Dr. Schultz. The goal of this antibody treatment is to boost immune defense instead of letting the human body to develop it’s own response. Eli Lilly has already tested this in nursing homes and hospitals.

“This current study is expanding that to go a little more general and recruit patients that have underlying conditions,” said Wiegel.

The study will focus on people who may be considered to be at high risk. This can be due to age, body mass index, have a compromised immune system, or other variables.

If you recently developed COVID-19 symptoms and want to learn more about this study, you can call (812) 205-2475.

Their address:

5015 Plaza East Blvd.
Evansville, IN 47715

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(This story was originally published on October 2, 2020)

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