VANCOUVER, British Columbia–(BUSINESS WIRE)–AbCellera (Nasdaq: ABCL) today announced that bamlanivimab (LY-CoV555) 700 mg, a human antibody discovered by AbCellera and developed with Eli Lilly and Company (Lilly), administered with a second Lilly antibody, etesevimab (LY-CoV016) 1400 mg, has received Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of mild to moderate COVID-19 in patients aged 12 and older who are at high risk for progressing to severe COVID-19 and/or hospitalization. New protocols enable front-line clinicians to administer bamlanivimab alone and bamlanivimab and etesevimab together in as few as 16 minutes and 21 minutes, respectively.
“The data show that bamlanivimab alone and bamlanivimab and etesevimab together are effective at reducing hospitalizations in high-risk COVID-19 patients, with consistent and similar efficacy across studies,” said Carl Hansen, Ph.D., CEO and President of AbCellera. “With this EUA for bamlanivimab and etesevimab together, there are more treatment options for patients at high risk for hospitalization and another layer of protection against the emergence of new viral variants.”
The EUA is based on Phase 3 data from the BLAZE-1 trial, which were announced on January 26, 2021. In that study of more than 1,000 COVID-19 patients, those who received bamlanivimab and etesevimab together had a reduction in hospitalizations of 70% and none died. Lilly plans to manufacture more than 250,000 doses of the bamlanivimab and etesevimab therapy throughout Q1 2021, and up to a million doses by mid-2021. Details regarding the EUA and Lilly’s plans to make COVID-19 therapies broadly available to patients can be found here.
About AbCellera’s Response to COVID-19
Bamlanivimab was developed from an antibody that was discovered from the blood of a recovered COVID-19 patient using AbCellera’s pandemic response platform, in partnership with the Vaccine Research Center (VRC) at National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). Within one week of receiving the sample, AbCellera screened over five million antibody-producing cells to identify and isolate approximately 500 unique antibodies that bind to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. The binding antibodies were then tested by AbCellera, the VRC, and Lilly to find those most effective in neutralizing the virus. Bamlanivimab was selected as the lead candidate from this group of antibodies, and was the first therapeutic candidate specifically developed against SARS-CoV-2 to enter human clinical trials in North America. Bamlanivimab was the first monoclonal antibody to receive EUA from the FDA and is currently being assessed in several clinical trials alone and together with other antibodies.
AbCellera’s pandemic response capabilities were developed over the past two years as part of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Pandemic Prevention Platform (P3) program. The goal of the P3 program is to establish a robust technology platform for pandemic response capable of developing field-ready medical countermeasures within 60 days of isolation of an unknown viral pathogen. AbCellera’s ongoing efforts to respond to the pandemic have identified more than 2,300 unique anti-SARS-CoV-2 human antibodies from multiple patient samples. These antibodies are in various stages of testing by AbCellera and its partners.
Bamlanivimab is a recombinant, neutralizing human IgG1 monoclonal antibody (mAb) directed against the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2. It is designed to block viral attachment and entry into human cells, thus neutralizing the virus. Bamlanivimab emerged from the collaboration between Lilly and AbCellera to create antibody therapies for the prevention and treatment of COVID-19. Lilly scientists rapidly developed the antibody in less than three months after it was discovered by AbCellera and the scientists at NIAID VRC. It was identified from a blood sample taken from one of the first U.S. patients who recovered from COVID-19.
Lilly has successfully completed a Phase 1 study of bamlanivimab in hospitalized patients with COVID-19 (NCT04411628). A Phase 2/3 study in people recently diagnosed with COVID-19 in the ambulatory setting (BLAZE-1, NCT04427501) is ongoing. A Phase 3 study of bamlanivimab for the prevention of COVID-19 in residents and staff at long-term care facilities (BLAZE-2, NCT04497987) is also ongoing. In addition, bamlanivimab is being tested in the National Institutes of Health-led ACTIV-2 study in ambulatory COVID-19 patients.
About AbCellera Biologics Inc.
AbCellera is a technology company that searches, decodes, and analyzes natural immune systems to find antibodies that its partners can develop into drugs to prevent and treat disease. AbCellera partners with drug developers of all sizes, from large pharmaceutical to small biotechnology companies, empowering them to move quickly, reduce cost, and tackle the toughest problems in drug development. For more information, visit www.abcellera.com.
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Source: AbCellera Biologics Inc.