Coronavirus patients without symptoms aren’t driving the spread of the virus, World Health Organization officials said Monday, casting doubt on concerns by some researchers that the disease could be difficult to contain due to asymptomatic infections. Some people, particularly young and otherwise healthy individuals, who are infected by the coronavirus never develop symptoms or only develop mild symptoms. Others might not develop symptoms until days after they were actually infected.
Preliminary evidence from the earliest outbreaks indicated that the virus could spread from person-to-person contact, even if the carrier didn’t have symptoms. But WHO officials now say that while asymptomatic spread can occur, it is not the main way it’s being transmitted.
Covid-19 is Accelerating Adoption of Decentralized Clinical Trials
Late last month, one of the largest contract research organizations and its parent company announced a partnership with a technology company to promote adoption of virtual clinical trials. But an important subtext to the trend is what has helped drive it over the past few months: the Covid-19 pandemic.Burlington, North Carolina-based LabCorp, the lab-testing giant, said May 28 that its CRO, Covance, would partner with Medable, a Palo Alto, California-based company that makes software for digital clinical trials, to give patients access to applications that allow them to participate in decentralized trials while also enabling interoperability, remote data collection and engagement between patients, sites and investigators.
In a nutshell, decentralization of trials means using technology like telehealth, mobile phones and wearables to enable people to take part in trials from home rather than having to frequently travel to a site, which has historically been the case. The hope is that this will open up trials to more diverse populations, given that study enrollment is often biased in favor of urban and affluent participants, which can skew results.
Lilly Announces Start of a Phase 1 Study for its Second Potential COVID-19 Antibody Treatment
Eli Lilly and Company announced its partner Junshi Biosciences has dosed the first healthy volunteer in a study of a potential neutralizing antibody treatment designed to fight COVID-19.The investigational medicine, referred to as JS016, is being co-developed by Junshi Biosciences and Lilly, with Junshi Biosciences leading development in Greater China. Lilly has exclusive rights in the rest of the world and will begin dosing patients in a complementary Phase 1 study in the United States in the coming days.This is Lilly’s second neutralizing antibody to start clinical trials, following LY-CoV555 that recently entered Phase 1 and is currently being tested in hospitalized COVID-19 patients.
Lilly is planning a clinical development program which includes a portfolio of monotherapy and combination antibody regimens (the latter often referred to as antibody “cocktails”) in order to understand which provide the best efficacy and tolerability in patients. These cocktails will include JS016, LY-CoV555, as well as additional antibodies currently in preclinical development.