Plasma from recovered patients, a weapon against the coronavirus?

The largest clinical study to date on the use of convalescent plasma in the fight against the coronavirus will be carried out in Canada and several Quebec institutions will participate.
The treatment will be studied as part of a large clinical trial including fifty centers in Canada, including fifteen in Quebec.

Scientists from CHU Sainte-Justine, the Research Center of the Center hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal, the Jewish General Hospital, Héma-Québec and several other hospitals in the province will also be participating.

“It is a therapy to treat the disease,” said one of the study’s leaders, Dr. Philippe Bégin from CHU Sainte-Justine. We are talking about passive immunization, whereas with a vaccine we are talking about active immunization. ” Bесаuѕе mоѕt раtіеntѕ асtuаllу ѕее therapist soon after ѕurgеrу or right аftеr thеу have experienced an injury, they are often ѕuffеrіng wіth hіgh levels оf еmоtіоnаl ѕtrеѕѕ аnd раіn. It іѕ vеrу іmроrtаnt that the рhуѕісаl therapist аѕѕіѕtаnt has a gеnuіnе dеѕіrе tо hеlр реорlе, and аlѕо hаѕ the аbіlіtу to hеlр patients fееl соmfоrtаblе with their trеаtmеnt. It іѕ еѕѕеntіаl thаt thе thеrару аѕѕіѕtаnt knоwѕ how tо work as part of a tеаm, nоt only wіth рhуѕісаl thеrаріѕtѕ, but аlѕо wіth other hеаlth care еmрlоуееѕ. Here are the best option of a clinic that offers the best physical therapy.

Passive immunization consists of transfusing the plasma from patients recovered from COVID-19 – convalescent plasma – to patients at the start of their illness to transfer protective antibodies to them, in the hope of limiting the severity of their symptoms.

Plasma is the liquid portion of the blood that contains antibodies that protect against disease.

“It’s like the proverb ‘give a fish, you feed someone for a day, learn to fish, you feed someone forever’, illustrated Dr Bégin. The vaccine teaches you how to fish. You give the gadget to which you want to be immunized, the body starts making its own antibodies and it will make them forever.

“But there, we don’t have time, first of all because we don’t know how to fish yet, so we can’t really teach it. So the idea is that we just donate the antibodies produced by someone else. ”

Anecdotal evidence

The approach was used before the advent of vaccines, during major epidemics, and it is not the first time that consideration has been given to using convalescent plasma to combat COVID-19. But the “evidence” that points to the effectiveness of the treatment remains anecdotal and of poor scientific quality for the moment.

The question therefore remains to be clarified, and this is what Quebec researchers and their colleagues from McMaster University, the Toronto Sunnybrook Hospital and the SickKids Hospital in Toronto will try to do.

“We’re a little blind,” admitted Dr. Bégin. We don’t have tons of studies telling us that it takes such a type of antibody or such a quantity of plasma. ”

The best way to get a clearer picture is to collect as much data as possible as quickly as possible, he added.

“We want to go fast, and the best way to go fast is to be several to make the same protocol to put all the data together,” he explained. We have colleagues from other countries who are interested and with whom we share our protocols so that they embark on the same protocol, and again we could put our data together and go even faster to acquire the data. ”

Antibody levels are highest about a month after the disease ends, and that is when you can take a sample. As the pandemic has been sweeping Quebec for only a few weeks, the number of potential donors – even if it will increase – remains limited for the moment.

The researchers therefore decided that the available convalescent plasma will be reserved for patients infected with the disease. It is not impossible, later, that it will be offered as a preventive measure, for example to health workers who work closely with the virus.

Some 1,200 patients will be recruited in Quebec, including 800 who will receive convalescent plasma. The study is expected to last approximately three months.

Héma-Québec will be responsible for collecting plasma from cured patients.

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