July 29, 2020 / 9:46 PM / 8 days ago

UPDATE 1-FDA could soon authorize COVID-19 treatment with antibody plasma - WSJ

(Adds FDA response, blood plasma transfusion background)

July 29 (Reuters) - The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) could authorize emergency use of antibody-rich blood plasma from recovered COVID-19 patients to treat people infected with the coronavirus as early as next week, the Wall Street Journal reported on.wsj.com/30Yfwlv on Wednesday, citing people familiar with the matter.

An FDA emergency-use authorization could allow faster access to a therapy for the pandemic that has taken the lives of more than 660,000 people globally.

The agency declined to comment on the WSJ report.

People who survive an infectious disease like COVID-19 are left with blood plasma containing antibodies, or proteins the body’s immune system made to fight off a virus.

This can be transfused into newly infected patients to try to aid recovery, and since the beginning of the pandemic, doctors have been transfusing convalescent plasma into critically ill COVID-19 patients.

Earlier this month, the European Union said it wants to fast-track funding to treat COVID-19 patients with blood plasma collected from survivors. (Reporting by Vishwadha Chander in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)

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