Doctors: COVID-19 patients show improvement from treatment under study in Memphis

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — An antibody cocktail is reducing levels of COVID-19 and improving symptoms in non-hospitalized patients, according to early results from clinical trials.

Some of those clinical trials are taking place in Memphis. Both the University of Tennessee Health Science Center and Regional One are participating in two trials with biotech company Regeneron

Dr. John Jefferies with the University of Tennessee-Methodist Hospital and Dr. Amber Thacker with UTHSC and Regional One talked about the antibody cocktail that so far seems to be helping COVID-19 patients.

“It’s something that could, that could be a very important experience for our community,” Jefferies said. “So they would come and get a one time infusion of these antibodies in hopes of binding to the viral spikes in an attempt to mitigate or lessen the effects of the infection of the body.”

For people exposed to household contact, it’s an attempt to help them from becoming infected and developing symptoms. Jefferies said not only could this help people here in Memphis, but if trials go well and are safe, the virus fighter could become widely available. 

“So, that’s a very exciting thing for us to be on the cutting edge for these new technologies and to participate in this opportunity to really change global healthcare,” Jefferies said.

Just this week, Regeneron said they are seeing positive data from the first 275 participants and said 64% had one or more underlying risk factors for severe COVID-19.

Thacker said anything that can help shorten the severity of the virus would have a positive impact.

“Any treatment that even just shortens duration or shortens severity of that is going to have an impact. Currently we don’t have many options, we don’t have any options for patients that are not admitted to the hospital,” Thacker said.

Individuals who think they may qualify are encouraged to contact (901) 448-2499 for more information, or to learn more click here.

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