The U.S. government added to its supplies of COVID-19 treatments this week with the announcement of $1 billion worth of new deals to bring GlaxoSmithKline plc and Vir Biotechnology, Inc.’s sotrovimab into its stocks.
The agreements were clinched after final data was released from the COMET-ICE Phase III trial of the drug, which showed its potential to reduce hospitalization and risk of death for adult COVID-19 patients with mild to moderate symptoms by 79 percent. In vitro data also demonstrated that sotrovimab has similar levels of capability against the Delta, Delta Plus, and Mu variants, among others. In May, the drug was granted an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
These new doses must be supplied to the government by Dec. 17, 2021. The U.S. government also secured an option to purchase additional doses through March 2022.
“Given the large number of patients who continue to become ill with COVID-19 across many regions in the US, there is an ongoing need for access to effective treatments,” Dr. Hal Barron, chief scientific officer and president of R&D for GSK, said. “We are proud to work with the US government to help make sotrovimab available for these patients.”
Sotrovimab is a single-dose, intravenous infusion SARS-CoV-2 monoclonal antibody. In the United States, it can be used for the treatment of mild-to-moderate COVID-19 cases in both adults and pediatric patients at least 12 years old. They must demonstrate positive test results for the disease and be at high risk of progressing to severe cases.
With these arrangements, GSK and Vir have secured sales of more than 750,000 doses of sotrovimab worldwide.