ScienceTherapeutic Focus Areas

COVID-19

Taking part in the fight against COVID-19

Over the past few months, our lives have changed dramatically as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. COVID-19 is caused by the novel virus SARS-CoV-2.  As new facts about the virus and the pandemic are revealed, the international scientific community, along with the pharmaceutical industry, are making tremendous efforts in order to combat the disease.

Since the outbreak of COVID-19, Kamada has been leveraging its unique human-plasma purification technology to develop an anti- SARS-CoV-2 polyclonal Immunoglobulin product (referred to as “Passive Vaccine” as detailed below).

Kamada has extensive experience in the development, manufacturing and marketing of plasma-derived immunoglobulin therapies including Anti-Rabies, Anti-Rho(D) and Anti-snake venom. Kamada’s Anti-Rabies IgG product is FDA approved and is distributed in the US market through a collaboration agreement with Kedrion Biopharma. Kamada’s other IgG products are currently marketed in over 25 countries.

Disease treatment by Passive Vaccine: Anti- SARS-CoV-2 polyclonal immunoglobulin

Passive Vaccine refers to the administration of specific antibodies against an infectious agent, to an unprotected individual, for the prevention or treatment of a given disease. Such antibodies are concentrated from plasma. The concept previously shown to be effective in the treatment of severe acute viral infections, such as rabies, hepatitis, CMV and others.

The role of antibodies is to bind antigens, such as viruses and bacteria, and trigger their neutralization and destruction as part of the immune response against pathogens.

This approach can be implemented utilizing Kamada’s established technology, allowing the development and manufacturing of specific plasma-derived immunoglobulin products in a relatively short period.

The development process starts with collecting plasma from patients who recover from COVID-19 (referred to as “convalescent plasma” and “convalescent patients”, respectively). The convalescent plasma is expected to contain specific antibodies against SARS-CoV-2. The plasma is purified utilizing Kamada’s proprietary and approved purification technology, and the antibodies are concentrated to a specific dosage form.

Pending the availability of adequate quantities of convalescent plasma and the required regulatory path for treatment approval, development timeline is expected to be relatively short as compared to other treatment approaches.

Global partnership with Kedrion Biopharma

Recently Kamada and Kedrion Biopharma, a global leader in plasma collection and plasma-derived therapeutics, announced a global collaboration for the development, manufacturing and distribution of a human plasma-derived Anti-SARS-CoV-2 immunoglobulin product, as a potential treatment for COVID-19 patients.

Joining forces with Kedrion is expected to speed up the development of the product and strengthen Kamada’s international reach. The initial focus of the collaboration will be to provide the product as treatment to patients in Italy, Israel and the U.S. through various clinical programs, while subsequently expanding development and commercialization efforts to additional markets.

This global collaboration expands the existing relationship between Kamada and Kedrion beyond KEDRAB®, a plasma-derived FDA-approved human rabies immunoglobulin that was launched successfully in the U.S. during 2018.

Other potential treatment approaches against COVID-19

  • Disease prevention using non-pharmaceutical measures
    Applying safety measures such as social distancing and increased sanitation actions, such as frequent hand washing.
  • Disease prevention using active vaccine
    Active vaccine involves administration of an immunogen that stimulates the body immune system to produce specific antibodies. This type of development might take a relatively long period of time before it will be widely available and will require demonstration of its safety and efficacy in clinical trials.  Sufficient quantities of the vaccine must be manufactured to enable global availability.
  • Disease treatment using Convalescent plasma
    Convalescent plasma from recovered patients can be administered by direct transfusion to a COVID-19 patient, in an attempt to achieve passive vaccination. the use of direct plasma transfusion has certain disadvantages compared with producing a specific immunoglobulin:
    • Potency level varies between donors resulting in treatment dose inconsistencies.
    • No viral elimination resulting in increased safety concerns.
    • Plasma must be kept frozen in storage.
    • Higher volumes of plasma are needed for adequate treatment.
  • Disease treatment by existing medications
    Existing medication may be “re-purposed” to treat COVID-19. These medications are available and with an established safety profile, yet efficacy against COVID-19 will need to be established in further clinical trials.

How can people who recovered from Coronavirus help other patients?

Patients who have recovered from COVID-19 are encouraged to check if they are eligible to donate plasma. Their convalescent plasma is expected to contain specific antibodies which bind to SARS-CoV-2 and assist in generation of the immune response against the virus.

The process of plasma donation is called Plasmapheresis. It is simple and takes less than an hour. It is usually done at a dedicated plasma collection facility. During the collection process the recovered patient’s (donor) blood is processed using an instrument that separates the plasma, which is the liquid containing the antibodies, from the white and red blood cells, which are returned to the donor in a closed loop system.

Kamada strives to serve patients worldwide, focusing on its strength to produce highly- purified specialty plasma therapeutics. We are proud to take part in the global effort to find an effective treatment for coronavirus patients in a short period of time.

Press Releases

27 April, 2020
Kamada and Kedrion Biopharma Announce Global Collaboration for the Development, Manufacturing and Distribution of a Plasma-Derived Anti-SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) Polyclonal Immunoglobulin Product

11 March, 2020
Kamada Provides Update on Progress Related to its Proprietary Hyper-Immunoglobulin (IgGs) Platform Technology including its Commercial Anti-Rabies IgG and its Pipeline Products Anti-Corona (COVID-19) and Anti-Zika IgGs

Public Information

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