SEOUL, Feb. 24 (Korea Bizwire) — South Korean pharmaceutical giant Celltrion Inc. on Thursday anticipated its antibody treatment against COVID-19 under development would show efficacy against the omicron variant.
Celltrion said that CT-P63 has maintained strong neutralizing ability against the omicron variant during pseudo-virus testing. The candidate treatment is currently under clinical trials.
The announcement comes after local health authorities announced Wednesday they will halt using Celltiron’s COVID-19 treatment, Rekirona.
The Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) said Rekirona has less efficacy against omicron, which has became the dominant strain in the country.
“Since Feb. 18, a new supply of Rekirona has been halted,” the KDCA said in a press release, adding that leftover bottles will be used until the end of this month for COVID-19 patients infected with the delta variant.
In February 2021, Rekirona won a conditional approval from South Korea’s drug safety agency, becoming the first locally made treatment for COVID-19.
CT-P63 is a monoclonal antibody targeting the spike receptor binding domain as a treatment for COVID-19 infection.
Celltrion also anticipates a cocktail therapy using CT-P63 in combination with Rekirona will be effective against emerging mutants.
The company also submitted an application for a phase three clinical trial of its cocktail therapy in three countries. The trial will enroll 2,200 participants.