NEW YORK (BLOOMBERG) - Sanofi and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals will soon begin evaluating an experimental treatment in patients hospitalised with severe Covid-19, the drugmakers said on Monday (March 16).
The companies initiated a later-stage clinical trial for a drug called Kevzara, a full-human monoclonal antibody that inhibits the so-called interleukin-6 (IL-6) pathway. Regeneron, which will be leading US-based trials, will begin enrolling up to 400 patients across 16 sites immediately. Sanofi will lead upcoming trials outside of the US in the coming weeks.
The pathway the experimental treatment is targeting may play a role in driving the overactive inflammatory response in the lungs of patients who are severely or critically ill with Covid-19, the drugmakers said in a statement.
Throughout the trials, France's Sanofi and Regeneron, based in Tarrytown, New York, will evaluate how Kevzara impacts patients' fevers and need for supplemental oxygen.
In an initial, non-peer reviewed Chinese trial, scientists identified preliminary evidence that IL-6 may play an important role in driving the inflammatory immune response that causes acute respiratory distress in patients critically ill from Covid-19.