Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute today announced a research agreement with Eli Lilly and Company (Lilly) to characterize Lilly's next-generation anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies. These collaborative studies aim to build on Lilly's current portfolio of neutralizing antibodies by exploring novel cocktails, half-life extension technologies, and strategies to further enhance potency. Neutralizing antibodies have the potential for both prevention and treatment of COVID-19 and may be particularly important for groups hardest hit by the disease, such as the elderly and those with compromised immune systems.
The research team will evaluate antibody candidates, delivered from Lilly through their partnership with AbCellera, using the live virus in the Institute's Biosafety Level 3 (BSL-3) laboratory, which is equipped with safeguards designed to protect laboratory personnel as well as the surrounding environment and community. The facility was established in 2016 to support Chanda's research on viruses having pandemic potential such as influenza, HIV, West Nile virus, Dengue fever, and coronaviruses.