Business steps in: Companies are also taking note of the potential for plasma.
Adam Schechter, CEO of the testing firm LabCorp, said at the Red Cross roundtable that his company will offer antibody testing at no charge through doctor’s offices to increase blood plasma donations. “LabCorp is currently working with public health authorities and the provider community on the details of the three-month program and will provide additional information in the near future,” the company said in a statement.
Paul Perreault, CEO of CSL Limited, said his company and the NIH are designing a clinical trial to test a treatment known as hyperimmune globulin, which is derived from convalescent plasma. The company is enrolling patients in the trial next month. If it shows the treatment is effective, CSL could file an application with the FDA by the end of this year, Perreault said.
What’s next: Hahn said the agency is reviewing the data behind the effectiveness of convalescent plasma. Clinical trials are ongoing and an emergency authorization from the FDA to expand the use of the plasma may be coming soon.