FDA Stops Use of Ineffective Antibody Drugs Against Omicron

- 26 January 2022 21:52 WIB
Regeneron and Eli Lilly are no longer effective against Omicron. (Unsplash/Louis Reed)
Regeneron and Eli Lilly are no longer effective against Omicron. (Unsplash/Louis Reed)

JAKARTADAILY.ID - The U.S. Food and Drug Administration stated its plan to halt COVID-19 antibody drugs from Regeneron and Eli Lilly because they are no longer effective against the Omicron variant, Associated Press reported on Tuesday (January 25, 2022). 

The FDA said on Monday that it would revoke emergency authorization for both drugs, which were purchased by the federal government and have been administered to millions of Americans with COVID-19. If the drugs prove effective against future variants, the FDA said it could reauthorize their use.

Omicron’s resistance to these two leading monoclonal antibody medicines has upended the treatment for COVID-19 in recent weeks. Both drugmakers had stated that their infusion treatments were less effective at targeting Omicron because of its mutations.

There are some effective therapies to combat early COVID-19 cases such as Pfizer and Merck and an antibody-drug from GlaxoSmithKline, but they are currently in short supply.

The FDA stated that Omicron causes more than 99 percent of infections in the United States, making it extremely unlikely that the antibodies will help patients who are currently seeking treatment. Restricting their use, according to the government, would also minimize unwanted pharmacological side effects, such as allergic responses.

On the other hand, some Republican governors who have been marketing these medications despite medical advice may oppose this federal intervention. One of the prominent voices in the GOP, Governor Ron DeSantis of Florida insisted that those two treatments were still helping certain Omicron patients, therefore some officials restarted the delivery of both drugs.

Editor: M. A. Wahad

Source: Associated Press

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