President Donald Trump took an experimental drug called Regeneron following his COVID-19 diagnosis, along with other medications and supplements including famotidine. What is Trump’s treatment, and what are the drugs used for?
Regeneron is the name of a biotech company which developed an antibody cocktail to help treat COVID-19, called REGN-COV2. Famotidine is an antacid, better known as Pepcid. He is also taking zinc, vitamin D, famotidine, melatonin and a daily aspirin, according to his physician, Dr. Sean Conley.
The antibody cocktail recently went through testing to treat COVID-19 patients who were not hospitalized, according to a Regeneron press release. The testing indicated the cocktail reduced the viral load and reduced the time it took for patients to experience symptom relief.
Here’s what you need to know:
Regeneron Released Test Results for its Antibody Cocktail to Treat COVID-19 Just Days Before Trump Took the Experimental Drug
Regeneron announced the test results for its antibody cocktail, REGN-COV2, in a press release September 29, 2020, just four days before Trump took the drug. Data from a seamless Phase 1/2/3 trial showed promising results in non-hospitalized patients, according to a Regeneron press release. The tests indicated patients who took the experimental drug had a decreased viral load, experienced symptoms for less time and required fewer medical visits. The randomized, double-blind trial is ongoing.
The test was part of a larger experiment to study the effects of the Regeneron drug on hospitalized patients and in infection prevention.
George D. Yancopoulos, M.D., Ph.D., President and Chief Scientific Officer of Regeneron, said:
After months of incredibly hard work by our talented team, we are extremely gratified to see that Regeneron’s antibody cocktail REGN-COV2 rapidly reduced viral load and associated symptoms in infected COVID-19 patients. The greatest treatment benefit was in patients who had not mounted their own effective immune response, suggesting that REGN-COV2 could provide a therapeutic substitute for the naturally-occurring immune response. These patients were less likely to clear the virus on their own, and were at greater risk for prolonged symptoms. We are highly encouraged by the robust and consistent nature of these initial data, as well as the emerging well-tolerated safety profile, and we have begun discussing our findings with regulatory authorities while continuing our ongoing trials. In addition to having positive implications for REGN-COV2 trials and those of other antibody therapies, these data also support the promise of vaccines targeting the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein.
Trump Took Regeneron, Famotidine & Supplements As a Precaution, Said His Physician
Trump’s physician, Dr. Sean Conley, released a memo on the afternoon of October 2 detailing the president’s treatment and condition. The memo said he took Regeneron’s antibody cocktail as a precaution, along with antacid famotidine, melatonin, aspirin, zinc and Vitamin D.
“As of this afternoon the President remains fatigued but in good spirits,” the memo said. “He’s being evaluated by a team of experts, and together we’ll be making recommendations to the President and First Lady in regards to next best steps.”
Melania Trump remains well, and is experiencing only a mild cough and headache, Conley added in the memo. The rest of the family tested negative for the coronavirus.
Trump posted an 18-second video on Twitter before he left the White House for the Walter Reed hospital in the evening of October 2.
“I want to thank everybody for the tremendous support. I’m going to Walter Reed hospital. I think I’m doing very well, but we’re going to make sure that things work out. The first lady is doing very well,” he said. “So thank you very much. I appreciate it. I will never forget it. Thank you.”