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A new treatment for those exposed to coronavirus but not yet vaccinated is undergoing trials in England.
The trials at University College London Hospitals (UCLH) NHS Trust are experimenting whether those recently exposed to coronavirus could be offered some measure of protection by direct antibody injections, according to the BBC.
“We know that this antibody combination can neutralize the virus, so we hope to find that giving this treatment via injection can lead to immediate protection against the development of COVID-19 in people who have been exposed — when it would be too late to offer a vaccine,” UCLH virologist Dr. Catherine Houlihan told the news service.
It can take weeks for vaccines to offer full immunity to a virus as the body builds up the required antibodies. The goal of post-exposure treatment is to provide an alternative — and more immediate — method of protection for those unable to receive the vaccine.
Antibodies can provide protection from the coronavirus for up to a year, researchers say who add they are not seeking to provide the treatment as an alternative for those able to receive the vaccine.
Trials have only begun in London, with the first results expected this spring.
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