On Wednesday, Temple University Hospital announced that the BREATHE clinical trial started treating its first COVID-19 patient, according to a press release about the project.
The trial is studying the use of gimsilumab — a lab-made antibody — on patients with severe cases of COVID-19 where the infection has compromised the lungs.
Many other research institutions across the country are studying whether antibodies taken from the blood of recovered COVID-19 patients can be used to help patients with severe cases. The BREATHE clinical trial is different because gimsilumab is a human-made antibody, and it can be mass-produced in a lab without relying on blood donation from recovered patients.
The primary aim of the study is to measure the mortality rate among up to 270 patients with confirmed cases of COVID-19. Half of the patients will be randomly selected to receive the treatment, while the other half will be given a placebo. The study will also look at how the treatment impacts patients' reliance on ventilators and the time spent in intensive care.