The Eli Lilly antibody is coming, but is it too little, too late?

Last week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration granted initial approval for an investigational monoclonal drug COVID-19, paving the way for more widespread use of the promising antibody-based treatment in the coming months. Taken in tandem with Pfizer announcing that its main coronavirus vaccine candidate had been 90% effective in advanced trials, it was good news in a country experiencing well over 100,000 new cases of COVID-19 per day.

But the bottlenecks will likely slow down doctors’ efforts to include monoclonal antibodies in the standard of care for COVID-19. The weeks and months ahead will be a race to develop smart ways to increase the production and distribution of these therapies even as hospitals are overwhelmed and deaths spiral.

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