New Delhi: Use of convalescent plasma therapy in coronavirus-infected patients does not help in reducing mortality to severe COVID-19, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has found.
The CP therapy involves taking antibodies from the blood of a person who has recovered from COVID-19 and transfusing those into an active coronavirus patient to help kick-start the immune system to fight the infection. A total of 464 participants were enrolled for the study, which has not yet been peer-reviewed and has appeared on a preprint server.
CP as a passive source of neutralising antibodies and immunomodulators is a century-old therapeutic option used for the management of viral diseases. Only two randomised controlled trials on CP use in COVID-19 have been published, one from China and the other from the Netherlands. In both studies, no mortality benefit was noted, and the Dutch study raised uncertainties regarding pre-transfusion antibody-status of patients as a potential factor in identifying appropriate candidates for CP therapy.
CP therapy has received regulatory approval for use in patients in different countries. This has resulted in its widespread adoption in real-world clinical practice, where it is being used to treat COVID-19 patients with a wide spectrum of disease severity.