GSK to widen COVID-19 antibody treatment trial after safety clearance

Reporting by Ludwig Burger; editing by Jason Neely

GlaxoSmithKline and partner Vir Biotechnology will expand their trial of an experimental antibody to treat COVID-19 after initial use by a group of volunteers did not raise any safety concerns.

The two partners in August started testing the antibody on early-stage COVID-19 patients, hoping to keep symptoms from progressing.

Various firms are running tests in this promising class of antiviral drugs to combat the pandemic.

After testing the drug on 20 U.S. participants for safety, the trial will now expand as planned to 1,300 patients globally.

Half the participants will be randomly assigned to a control group receiving a placebo.

Interim trial results may be available as early as the end of 2020. Complete efficacy results are expected as early as January or later in the first quarter of 2021.

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