Therapy Areas: Infectious Diseases
AbCellera Partner Lilly to Start Trial at Long-Term Care Facilities
4 August 2020 - - LY-CoV555, a human antibody discovered by Canada-based biotechnology firm AbCellera in collaboration with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) Vaccine Research Center and co-developed with US-based pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly and Company as a potential treatment and prophylaxis for COVID-19, has progressed to Phase 3 clinical trials, AbCellera said.

A first-of-its-kind, the Lilly-sponsored trial will use customised mobile research units to conduct the study at long-term care facilities across the United States.

The study will include up to 2,400 participants and assess the ability of LY-CoV555 to prevent infection of long-term care residents and facility staff who have been exposed to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

Additional details regarding the trial, which is being conducted in partnership with NIAID, a component of the US National Institutes of Health, can be found here.

LY-CoV555 is a neutralizing antibody against SARS-CoV-2 that emerged from AbCellera's collaboration with Lilly. 

Identified in early March, LY-CoV555 was the world's first therapeutic candidate specifically developed against SARS-CoV-2 to enter human clinical trials.

LY-CoV555 is also the fastest therapeutic antibody molecule ever developed, moving from first screen to clinical testing in 90 days. LY-CoV555 advanced to Phase 2 clinical trials on June 17.

Prior to the outbreak of COVID-19, AbCellera adapted its technology to rapidly respond to pandemics as part of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Pandemic Prevention Platform.

The goal of the 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.

To date, AbCellera has interrogated 61.8 m immune cells from multiple patient samples and identified more than 2,000 unique human antibodies that bind to the surface of SARS-CoV-2. These antibodies are in various stages of testing by AbCellera and its partners, which include Lilly and the VRC.

LY-CoV555 is a potent, neutralizing IgG1 monoclonal antibody 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, potentially preventing and treating COVID-19.

AbCellera is a privately held biotech with a drug discovery platform that searches and analyzes natural immune systems to find antibodies that can be used to prevent and treat disease.

AbCellera's technology, which combines high-throughput microfluidics, hyper-scale data science, machine learning, bioinformatics, and genomics, identifies new first-in-class drugs and reduces the time it takes to bring treatments to the clinic. AbCellera's partners include leading biotechnology companies, global health organisations, and many of the top 10 biopharmaceutical companies.