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September 17, 2020

Coronavirus company news summary – Lilly reports positive results for Covid-19 antibody drugs – Indonesia to sign up to COVAX Facility

By Allie Nawrat

17 September 2020 

Eli Lilly has reported positive proof-of-concept results from the BLAZE-1 clinical trial, which assessed SARS-CoV-2 neutralising antibody candidate LY-CoV555, of symptomatic Covid-19 in outpatients. An interim analysis found that the drug candidate decreased rate of hospitalisation. The pre-specified primary endpoint of change from baseline in viral load at day 11 was reached at the 2800mg dose level.

The US Government has plans to begin distributing a Covid-19 vaccine within a day of regulatory authorisation, with the potential that a limited quantity of doses may be available at the end of the year. According to the government’s distribution plans, vaccines will be allocated for each state depending on the critical populations recommended first for vaccination by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

A study by the University of Illinois Chicago in the US has found that Covid-19 drug candidate, azithromycin, is not related to an increase in cardiac events, but its use alongside some other heart drugs could rise cardiac events. Findings revealed that a QT-prolonging medication plus azithromycin increased the risk of cardiac events by 40%, when compared to amoxicillin.

Indonesia Ministry of Health has signed a memorandum of understanding with UNICEF to ensure access to a Covid-19 vaccine, once available. The access will be provided through the COVAX Facility initiative, which is led by the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, and the World Health Organization, to ensure equitable access to Covid-19 vaccines.

Sinovac Biotech is set to conduct a clinical trial of its Covid-19 vaccine candidate in adolescents and children later this month. About 552 healthy participants aged three to 17 years will be given two doses of the CoronaVac vaccine or a placebo in a Phase I/II trial in China. According to a company spokesperson, Chinese regulator already approved the trial.

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