Monoclonal Antibodies

Bamlanivimab Alone or in Combination?

Angie Szumlinski Studies

A phase 3 clinical trial was conducted in skilled nursing and assisted living facilities that demonstrated that bamlanivimab was effective in reducing the incidence of mild or worse COVID-19 in residents and participants at high risk of severe COVID-19. Bamlanivimab was also associated with lower rates of infection in residents and high-risk individuals. Participants in the prevention population who received bamlanivimab and acquired SARS-CoV-2 had lower baseline viral loads and shorter time to viral clearance compared with participants who received placebo.

The Emergency Use Authorization of bamlanivimab as monotherapy was revoked by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It noted that “based on the sustained increase of SARS-CoV-2 viral variants that are resistant to bamlanivimab, when administered alone, no longer outweigh the known and potential risks for its authorized use”. However, authorization of bamlanivimab in combination with etesevimab remains in place.

The study concluded that among residents and staff in skilled nursing and assisted living facilities, treatment during August-November 2020 with bamlanivimab monotherapy reduced the incidence of COVID-19 infection. Further research is needed to assess preventive efficacy with current patterns of viral strains with combination monoclonal antibody therapy. Stay well, stay informed, and stay tuned!