Trump’s Covid-19 antibody treatment was partly developed using Singaporean blood plasma | South China Morning Post
Trump was discharged from hospital on Monday evening and in a video released shortly after he was ensconced in the White House said he was feeling better.Dr Jonathan Reiner, a professor of medicine at George Washington University, told CNN:“The president might be the only patient on the planet ever to receive this particular combination of medicines.”
Indeed, REGN-COV2 has not received emergency use authorisation from the US Food and Drug Administration and the biotech firm said it had provided the drug in response to Trump’s doctors making a “compassionate use” request. Asian Science Magazine said convalescent plasma from patients who had recovered from Covid-19 could be used to prevent or treat the disease but even with the US Food and Drug Administration authorising the emergency use of convalescent plasma, the difficulty of obtaining sufficient blood from volunteers meant it was not possible to use it at a large scale.
Instead, the Regeneron therapy clones antibodies from both “humanised” mice and recovered patients to produce a reliable source of monoclonal antibodies, reported the magazine.
“While the humanised mice were based on a technology owned by Regeneron, the human plasma used was supplied through an agreement with Singapore’s National Centre for Infectious Diseases,” it added. Reports of antibody treatments in the works emerged in June, with most of them in labs across Asia, including Singapore, Japan, China and South Korea. Scientists explained that the treatment works by harvesting specific antibodies – produced by the body to fight off diseases when an individual catches a virus – to trigger other parts of the immune system to attack the cells containing the toxin.
For Singapore, its defence research and development organisation DSO National Laboratories had announced in June that it had discovered five antibodies that could block the coronavirus and protect against key mutations, after scientists screened hundreds of thousands of cells that produce the antibodies.The country’s government-linked biomedical sciences institute A*Star is working with Japanese pharmaceutical company Chugai Group separately on similar treatments