- ICMR and Biological Ltd. together developed a “highly purified antisera.”
- The antisera are claimed to be effective against the Covid-19 virus.
THD NewsDesk, NEW DELHI: The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has teamed up with the biopharmaceutical company, Biological E Ltd., to produce a potential Covid-19 treatment. Biological E Limited is a privately owned biopharmaceutical company based in Hyderabad that specializes in mass-manufacturing low-cost vaccines.
The “highly purified antisera” formulated by administering inactivated SARS-CoV2 in horses can be employed for prophylaxis. The treatment of patients if proven effective against coronavirus.
“The ICMR and Biological E Limited, Hyderabad, have developed highly purified antisera (raised in animals) for prophylaxis and treatment of COVID-19,” said the apex health research body said on Thursday.
The study involved the injection of ten healthy horses with an inactivated SARS-CoV-2 virus. Plasma samples of the horses were obtained after 21 days of immunization.
The examination of plasma samples revealed the presence of SARS-Co-V2 specific IgG antibodies to neutralize the coronavirus.
The study paper said that,
“The study provides evidence of the potential of generating highly purified F(ab’)2 from equines against SARS-CoV-2 that can demonstrate consistent and high neutralization activity. Further, in-vivo testing for efficacy of this indigenously developed, the cost-effective product will pave the way to clinical evaluation. Additionally, being a donor independent method, this may prove as an efficient alternative to convalescent plasma for treatment of COVID-19 patients,”
However, the study has not been peer-reviewed.
“Although plasma recovered from patients experiencing COVID-19 could serve a similar purpose, the profile of antibodies, their efficacy and concentration keep varying from one patient to another and therefore make it an unreliable clinical tool for patient management.”
Said the ICMR said in a tweet. It further said,
“Standardization achievable through equine sera based treatment modality thus stands out as yet another remarkable public health initiative supported by ICMR in the time of COVID-19”.
Further, Samiran Panda (the head of epidemiology and communicable diseases) at ICMR informed that the antisera are yet to clear all the trials’ phases. The efficacy of the antisera and safety levels will be tested through the clinical trials.
Antisera constitute large quantities of antibodies against specific antigens, injected in humans to trigger the immune system to fight particular infections.
The pre-print version of the study has been published in the Research Square platform, elaborating on the research and development.