• COVA1-18 neutralizing antibody protects against SARS-CoV-2 in three preclinical models

      Maisonnasse, Pauline; Aldon, Yoann; Marc, Aurélien; Marlin, Romain; Dereuddre-Bosquet, Nathalie; Kuzmina, Natalia A; Freyn, Alec W; Snitselaar, Jonne L; Gonçalves, Antonio; Caniels, Tom G; et al. (Springer Nature, 2021-10-20)
      Effective treatments against Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) are urgently needed. Monoclonal antibodies have shown promising results in patients. Here, we evaluate the in vivo prophylactic and therapeutic effect of COVA1-18, a neutralizing antibody highly potent against the B.1.1.7 isolate. In both prophylactic and therapeutic settings, SARS-CoV-2 remains undetectable in the lungs of treated hACE2 mice. Therapeutic treatment also causes a reduction in viral loads in the lungs of Syrian hamsters. When administered at 10 mg kg-1 one day prior to a high dose SARS-CoV-2 challenge in cynomolgus macaques, COVA1-18 shows very strong antiviral activity in the upper respiratory compartments. Using a mathematical model, we estimate that COVA1-18 reduces viral infectivity by more than 95% in these compartments, preventing lymphopenia and extensive lung lesions. Our findings demonstrate that COVA1-18 has a strong antiviral activity in three preclinical models and could be a valuable candidate for further clinical evaluation.