Regeneron Offers Biden Same Experimental Cocktail as Taken by Trump at Walter Reed

Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, the creator of the antibody cocktail given to President Donald Trump as part of his COVID-19 treatment, says the company also reached out to former Vice President Joe Biden to offer him the treatment as well.

Regeneron CEO Dr. Leonard Schleifer said the pharmaceutical company provided its experimental coronavirus treatment to Trump last week despite it not being cleared for broader use by any regulatory agency. Regeneron says early trials showed their COVID-19 antibody drug reduced viral levels and improved symptoms, although not among people with severe cases of the virus. The company is testing the virus among hospital patients as well as in preventative scenarios, including people who live with someone previously infected with the virus.

Schleifer said Trump's request for the antibody cocktail places the company in a "very tough situation" in terms of authorization for broader use.

Schleifer said Trump's medical staff reached out to the Food and Drug Administration, who cleared the treatment for him late last week. Trump's former FDA chief, Dr. Scott Gottlieb, even appeared on CNBC's Squawk Box Monday saying the White House "wasn't taking good precautions to protect the president."

The company's stock was soaring early Monday as Regeneron co-founder and Chief Scientific Officer (CSO) Dr. George Yancopoulos described the antibody cocktail on MSNBC Monday morning: "Our antibody cocktail essentially just mimics the normal immune system... theoretically there should not be any additional interactions with these other medications than you'd have with your own antibodies."

Newsweek reached out to the Biden campaign Monday for comment, but it remains unclear what their response was to Regeneron's offer. Biden has tested negative at least three times since it was announced Trump was infected with COVID-19.

The company is being challenged from an ethical standpoint by several physicians, particularly given that Schleifer, is a member of Trump's upstate New York golf club.

Yancopoulos told MSNBC Monday that the antibody cocktail boosts the immune system response, and reduced the concern created after Trump took the immunosuppressive dexamethasone earlier in his treatment. Several physicians followed up the MSNBC appearance and remarked on Twitter that drugs which are "much further along" in efficacy trials have not received as much attention or fast-tracking from the FDA or other regulatory bodies.

The New York state-based company won a $450 million federal contract in July to manufacture and supply its antibody cocktail, REGN-COV2, to Americans at large.

"All we can say is that they asked to be able to use it, and we were happy to oblige," Schleifer ntold the New York Times, describing it as a "compassionate use" case.

Regeneron's stock is continuing to rise Monday alongside Gilead Sciences Inc., both are manufacturers of medicines taken by Trump as part of his team's COVID-19 treatment plan.

The president's physician, Dr. Sean Conley, announced Saturday that Trump received an 8-gram, single-dose of Regeneron's polyclonal antibody cocktail as a precautionary measure after being diagnosed Thursday with coronavirus. The cocktail is currently in four separate late-stage clinical trials, therefore its efficacy and safety have not been corroborated by any regulatory authority.

Newsweek also reached out to the FDA Monday morning for additional remarks, but did not receive a reply before publication.

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Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, the creator of the antibody cocktail given to President Donald Trump as part of his COVID-19 treatment, says the company also reached out to former Vice President Joe Biden to offer him the treatment as well. Screenshot: CNBC | YouTube
Regeneron Offers Biden Same Experimental Cocktail as Taken by Trump at Walter Reed | News