OXNARD (CBSLA) — Two COVID-19 clinical trials began on Thursday in Oxnard.
FOMAT Medical Research is testing an antibody cocktail called REGN-COV2, which has been gaining attention nationally as a possible way to treat and prevent the infection.
“It’s very much looking very promising,” said Nicholas Focil, CEO at FOMAT. “It gives your body the tools to fight it off on its own in a way.”
People who are interested in participating in the trials can get free coronavirus testing at a site across from the Oxnard Main Library. Results are returned within an hour. Anyone who tests positive can participate in the trial for treatment.
“This medication is for early onset,” Focil said. “You are randomized into one of three arms. It’s a combination therapy that you will be in high dose, low dose or placebo. It’s a one-time treatment day, so you’ll get treated that same day and for the next 35 days, you’ll be followed up with about 15 times.”
Anyone who tests negative can qualify for the second study, which is designed for healthy people who are at high risk of infection. They will be given the medicine and will be monitored for 7 months to see if infection is prevented.
“This one depends on if you are in a household with somebody that has COVID,” Focil said. “So what’s important with vaccines and preventative trials in general is that you have high exposure to the disease.”
Focil said the funding for the trials comes from the federal government’s “Operation Warp Speed” project. Its goal is to deliver safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines by January 2021.
“The vaccine is around the corner,” he said. The treatment is around the corner, and we do need the part of every single person here to make sure this thing gets through.”