Medicine developed at Ichilov moderates immune response, helps prevent deadly cytokine storm researchers say; 29 of 30 phase 1 trial patients left the hospital after suffering moderate to COVID-19 severe infections within 3-5 days.
A breakthrough treatment for Covid-19 is being developed at Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center (Ichilov Hospital). It has just successfully completed phase 1 trials and appears to have helped numerous patients suffering from moderate-to-serious cases of COVID-19 quickly recover from the disease.
Professor Nadir Arber working for the Ichilov Hospital, has developed a substance called EXO-CD24, which has been tested on 30 volunteer patients whose conditions were moderate to severe. All 30 recovered — 29 of them within three to five days.
This is a “huge breakthrough,” according to Ichilov Medical Center and Professor Nadir Arber, who explains that EXO-CD24 fights the cytokine storm — a potentially lethal immune overreaction to the coronavirus infection that is believed to be responsible for much of the deaths associated with the disease. A cytokine storm is a physiological reaction in humans in which the innate immune system causes an uncontrolled and excessive release of pro-inflammatory signaling molecules called cytokines.
According to the Ichilov Medical Center, the EXO-CD24 medicine uses exosomes — tiny carrier sacs that shuttle materials between cells — to deliver a protein called CD24 to the lungs, which Dr. Arber has spent decades researching. Researcher Shiran Shapira of Arber’s lab says…
“This protein is located on the surface of cells and has a well-known and important role in regulating the immune system.”
The protein helps calm down the immune system and curb the storm. Arber went on to say…
“The preparation is inhaled once a day for a few minutes, for five days,” “The preparation is directed straight to the heart of the storm — the lungs — so unlike other formulas… which selectively restrain a certain cytokine, or operate widely but cause many serious side effects, EXO-CD24 is administered locally, works broadly and without side effects.”
EXO-CD24 will now move on to further trial phases, but hospital officials were already hailing it as a possible game-changer in fighting serious COVID-19 illness.
Ichilov Medical Center director Roni Gamzu, the former coronavirus czar, said the research…
“…is advanced and sophisticated and may save coronavirus patients. The results of the phase 1 trial are excellent and give us all confidence in the method [Arber] has been researching in his lab for many years.”
“I am proud that at Ichilov, we are… possibly bringing a blue and white remedy to a terrible global pandemic.”
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