Expanding its arsenal of drugs to battle the massive second wave of COVID-19, the Central Drugs Standards Control Organisation (CDSCO) on Wednesday granted Emergency Use Authorisation (EUA) to Swiss pharma company Roche for the antibody cocktail ‘Casirivimab and Imdevimab’ in India. The decision was taken based on data filed with the U.S. regulators and the scientific opinion of a European regulatory panel.
Confirming the news, Roche Pharma India MD V Simpson Emmanuel said, “With the increasing number of COVID-19 infections in India, Roche is committed to doing everything we can to minimize hospitalizations and ease pressure on healthcare systems,” He added, “This is where neutralizing antibody cocktails like Casirivimab and Imdevimab can play a role in the fight against COVID-19 and in treatment of high-risk patients before their condition worsens.”
Roche’s India distribution partner for the drug, Cipla’s MD and Global CEO Umang Vohra said, “This partnership with Roche is a significant step in enabling access to promising treatments in furtherance to our purpose of ‘Caring for Life'”.
The antibody cocktail is to be administered for the treatment of mild to moderate coronavirus disease in adults and pediatric patients (12 years of age or older, weighing at least 40 kg) who are confirmed to be infected with SARS-COV2 and who are at high risk of developing severe COVID-19 disease.
The drug already has similar authorization in the United States and is used in European non-hospitalized patients. Former U.S. President Donald Trump had taken the drug when he contracted the disease
COVID situation in India
The development holds relevance at this time when India is dealing with the second wave of COVID-19. Since April 15, India has been witnessing a steep rise in the number of COVID-19 cases. On April 4, the country recorded over 1 lakh cases, which doubled in a span of ten days and has been seeing a rise ever since, with now, over 3-lakh cases being reported every day.
Keeping up with the daily record, the country on Wednesday reported 3,82,315 new coronavirus infections, pushing the active cases in the country to 34,87,229 comprising 16.87 percent of the total infections. The recovery rate so far stands at 82.03 percent, with a count of 1, 69,51,731 recuperated from the disease. The fatality rate, on the other hand, stands at 1.09 percent, with 2,26,188 fatalities, 3,780 reported in the last 24 hours. From the outbreak of the pandemic, the country has reported 2,06,65,148 cases.