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US company says its antibody treatment cuts COVID hospitalizations, deaths by 70%

US pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly’s combination of two synthetic antibodies against COVID-19 reduces hospitalizations and deaths by 70 percent in high-risk patients with recent positive tests, the company says.

“Bamlanivimab and etesevimab together have the potential to be an important treatment that significantly reduces hospitalizations and death in high-risk COVID-19 patients,” Lilly’s chief scientific officer Daniel Skovronsky says.

The results mean that the phase 3 trial involving 1,035 people achieved its main goal, and the study also met its secondary goals of reducing patients’ viral load and their time to recover from the disease.

Patients were assigned either a placebo or the combination of bamlanivimab and etesevimab, the two antibodies, at 2.8 grams each.

A healthcare worker tends to a COVID-19 patient in the intensive care unit at Santa Clara Valley Medical Center during the coronavirus pandemic in San Jose, California, January 13, 2021. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File)

There were 11 deaths or hospitalizations in the patients who received the therapy, or 2.1 percent of that group. In the placebo arm, there were 36 deaths or hospitalizations, or 7.0 percent of the group.

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