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S. Korea ready for clinical trial of immunoglobulin drug based on plasma containing antibodies

By Lim Chang-won Posted : August 11, 2020, 18:02 Updated : August 11, 2020, 18:02

[Courtesy of Inha University]

SEOUL -- South Korea is ready to conduct the clinical trial of an immunoglobulin drug based on plasma containing antibodies in hospitals to treat COVID-19 patients. In five hospitals, 60 people will be given drugs to set proper dosage and check safety and efficacy.

The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) has unveiled a roadmap for the treatment of COVID-19 to develop plasma treatment by the year's end as well as antibody treatment and vaccines next year. GC Pharma, a biotech company, is working with the state-run National Institutes of Health to develop plasma treatment by collecting blood from 642 people.

"The manufacturing process for the clinical trial of plasma therapy was completed on August 10," KCDC Deputy Director Kwon Jun-wook said in a regular press briefing. "If approved, we will immediately start clinical testing on patients."

Plasma treatment is different from plasma therapy which involves the infusions of blood plasma from COVID-19 survivors to patients. South Korean drug and bio companies have jumped into the race to develop vaccines or treatments, while doctors have formed a task force to find proper treatment by mixing antiviral drugs.

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