The WHO Recommends Neutralizing Monoclonal Antibody Cocktail
The World Health Organization (WHO) welcomed the addition of another therapeutic to the world's arsenal against COVID-19 on September 24, 2021. Two new recommendations were made regarding the use of neutralizing monoclonal antibodies, casirivimab, and imdevimab, known as REGEN-CoV.
Regeneron's REGEN-COV Monoclonal Antibody Cocktail (Ronapreve) combines monoclonal antibodies casirivimab and imdevimab, explicitly designed to block the infectivity of SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.
The WHO's news recommendations are as follows:
- Conditional recommendation #1 - We suggest treatment with casirivimab and imdevimab, conditional to those at the highest risk of hospitalization. In non-severe patients, casirivimab and imdevimab probably reduce the risk of hospitalization and duration of symptoms. In addition, Casirivimab and imdevimab are unlikely to have serious adverse effects, including allergic reactions.
- Conditional recommendation #2 - We suggest treatment with casirivimab and imdevimab under the condition that the patient has seronegative status. In the overall population of patients with severe and critical COVID-19, casirivimab and imdevimab may not impact mortality, and the impact on mechanical ventilation and duration of hospitalization is very uncertain.
The WHO Therapeutics and COVID-19 living guide is updated regularly as new evidence emerges. This sixth version of the WHO guideline now contains nine recommendations.
The U.S. HHS announced on September 13, 2021; it is committed to helping ensure consistent availability of these critical drugs for current and future patients in all geographic areas of the USA.
However, REGEN-COV has not been U.S. FDA approved but has been authorized for emergency use by the U.S. FDA.