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An AstraZeneca building corporate office on Feb. 24, 2021, in South San Francisco, California. (Valeriya Zankovych/Dreamstime/TNS)
An AstraZeneca building corporate office on Feb. 24, 2021, in South San Francisco, California. (Valeriya Zankovych/Dreamstime/TNS) (Valeriya Zankovych/Dreamstime)

(Tribune News Service) AstraZeneca has asked the Food and Drug Administration to approve its COVID-19 antibody treatment that would act as a long-acting drug mainly for those with compromised immune systems.

The drugmaker — which was among the first to create a COVID-19 vaccine — said its antibody treatment, AZD7442, is a first of its kind therapy that utilizes long-acting antibody protection.

“First and foremost we want to protect those vulnerable populations that haven’t been adequately protected by the vaccine,” said Menelas Pangaloa, AstraZeneca’s head of research and development. “But ultimately it will be up to health authorities to work out who they choose to immunize.”

According to Pangaloa, the antibody treatment is made for boosting a person’s immunity for up to a year. Current antibody drugs only offer just a month or two of protection.

The FDA has already authorized three additional antibody drugs. Two of those drugs can be distributed after a person has been exposed to COVID-19 and will help prevent symptoms. AstraZeneca’s drug on the other hand would only be given as a preventive measure in addition to a vaccine, NBC News reported.

On the topic of vaccinations, the FDA has already said that any antibody remedies are not a reason to avoid getting vaccinated as they offer the best level of protection, especially for the long-term.

According to studies conducted by AstraZeneca, their antibody treatment reduced the chance of developing COVID-19 related symptoms by 77%. More than three-quarters of the participants in this study were immunocompromised already.

The drug will provide “an additional option to help protect against COVID-19 alongside vaccines,” Pangalos added. AstraZeneca also intends on asking for authorization of their treatment in Europe.

©2021 New York Daily News. Visit at nydailynews.com.

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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