A breakthrough on the horizon?
Researchers at University College London Hospitals (UCLH) and AstraZeneca have been working on an antibody that could strengthen the arsenal of weapons being developed to eradicate the COVID-19 virus.
This new development could be used as an emergency treatment to patients in hospitals and to the more vulnerable in care homes as a way to contain the number of outbreaks. It could also be used on anyone living in a household where another member of the shared space hast caught the virus.
Similarly, university students, a demographic that tends to socialize in larger numbers and thus spread the virus quicker, could benefit from the new treatment and drastically reduce the amount of daily infection rates.
Dr Catherine Houlihan, a virologist at UCLH currently leading a study on this new treatment, believes that:
If we can prove that this treatment works and prevent people who are exposed to the virus going on to develop Covid-19, it would be an exciting addition to the arsenal of weapons being developed to fight this dreadful virus.
A decline in COVID-19 deaths
Perhaps the most beneficial outcome of this new treatment is that it could significantly reduce the death toll of the virus. The UK currently has the second most highest death toll in Europe right behind Italy.
Professor of medicine at the Univeristy of East Anglia who specializes in infections diseases, Paul Hunter, explains that:
If you had an outbreak in a care home, you might want to use these sorts of cocktails of antibodies to bring the outbreak under control as soon as possible by giving the drug to everybody in the care home - residents and staff - who hasn't been vaccinated.