Cologne University Hospital (UKK), University of Marburg (UMR), the German Center for Infection Research (DZIF), and Boehringer Ingelheim announced that the Phase 1/2a clinical investigation of BI 767551, a new SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibody had started. The new neutralizing antibody can be a potential new therapeutic and prophylactic option against COVID-19. Virus neutralizing antibodies are expected to become an important line of defense against SARS-CoV-2, complementing vaccines, and non-pharmaceutical interventions.
The new antibody BI 767551 was derived from blood samples of recovered COVID-19 patients at UKK and was examined for SARS-CoV-2 neutralization at UMR. Directly delivering BI 767551 to the lungs by inhalation has the potential to provide fast-acting protection from viral infection in the respiratory tract. “We are excited to contribute to the development of BI 767551 in collaboration with our partners, intending to provide an innovative SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibody, combining a systemic with an inhaled route of administration,” said Michel Pairet, member of Boehringer Ingelheim’s Board of Managing Directors with responsibility for the company’s Innovation Unit.
The Phase 1/2a studies (NCT04631705, NCT04631666) will evaluate the safety, pharmacokinetics and antiviral activity of the antibody. In Phase 1, the antibody will be administered to participants either with a single infusion or a single inhalation. If the antibody is well-tolerated, late-stage confirmatory studies will be conducted.
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