COVID-19: Japan becomes first country to approve Roche's antibody cocktail treatment

Edited By: Bharat Sharma WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Published: Jul 20, 2021, 03:49 PM(IST)

Personnel prepare and process PCR and antibody tests of people who think they may be infected with the novel coronavirus (Covid-19), at the laboratory of the Karolinska Hospital in Solna near Stockholm on December 7, 2020. Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

Ronapreve is an antibody cocktail treatment which showed success in limiting serious illness among Covid positive patients, consequentially lowering risk of death

Japan has become the first country to grant approval to Ronapreve antibody treatment for COVID-19.

The antibody treatment was created by Swiss pharmaceutical company Roche and is intended for treating patients with mild to moderate coronavirus symptoms.

Phase 3 trials of the treatment revealed that the cocktail dramatically decreased the risk of developing serious illness from COVID-19 requiring hospitalisation.

What is Ronapreve?

Ronapreve was developed by Roche in collaboration with US biotech firm Regeneron. It was approved by Japan's ministry of health, labour and welfare, according to a statement by Roche. Japan was confirmed as the "first country" to grant approval to Ronapreve.

"Ronapreve has been shown to improve survival in high-risk, non-hospitalised COVID-19 patients by reducing the risk of hospitalisation and death," AFP cited Roche chief medical officer and product development chief Levi Garraway as saying.

What do Ronapreve trials show?

According to Garraway, the cocktail retained "activity" against new variants including the more infectious and lethal Delta during preclinical studies.

In addition, Roche claims that Phase 3 trials of Ronapreve revealed that patients with high risk of serious illness who received the antibody cocktail witnessed 70 per cent reduction in hospitalisation and death.

Ronapreve also helped in shortening the length of symptomatic illness by at least 4 days. Based on Phase 1 trials, scientists found that the drug was safely tolerated among the Japanese population.

Roche claims the antibody combination has received authorisation for emergency use especially in hard hit countries including United States, India, the European Union, Canada, and Switzerland.

(With inputs from agencies)

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