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AstraZeneca’s antibody combination has been authorized for use in Great Britain to prevent COVID-19 in high-risk populations and people for whom vaccination may not be effective.
AstraZeneca’s antibody combination Evusheld (tixageimab co-packaged with cilgavimab) has been authorized by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) for pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) against COVID-19 in Great Britain. The medicine is intended for use in high-risk populations and in people who may not have an adequate response to COVID-19 vaccination, including those who are not recommended for vaccination.
Tixagevimab co-packaged with cilgavimab is a combination of two monoclonal antibodies given as separate sequential intramuscular injections. According to the press release, about 500,000 people in the UK are immunocompromised and may benefit from this medicine for PrEP of COVID-19. People with blood cancers and those taking immunosuppressive drugs after an organ transplant or for conditions including multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis are among the immunocompromised population that fail to generate any antibodies after vaccination.
A trial testing the efficacy of the medicine showed a statistically significant reduction in the risk of developing symptomatic COVID-19 after taking the medicine compared to the placebo. The trial showed that protection from the virus continued for at least six months. A follow-up is needed to establish the full duration of protection against the virus.
“Evusheld fills an urgent gap in the UK’s fight against COVID-19, providing protection for people for whom vaccination may not be effective and who are often amongst the most clinically vulnerable in society,” said Tom Keith Roach, president of AstraZeneca UK. “We hope to see this critical medicine made available to UK patients as quickly as possible, in line with other countries.”