In a major breakthrough in the battle with the COVID-19 pandemic, Tel Aviv University researchers have isolated two antibodies that neutralize all known strains of COVID-19 – including Omicron – with up to 95% efficiency and will strengthen the immune systems of people at risk.
Targeted treatment with antibodies and their delivery to the body in high concentrations may serve as an effective substitute for vaccines, especially for at-risk populations and those with weakened immune systems, according to the researchers. By using antibody treatment, there is a possibility that the need to provide repeated booster shots to the entire population every time a new variant emerges will be eliminated.
The research was led by Dr. Natalia Freund and doctoral students Michael Mor and Ruofan Lee of the Department of Clinical Microbiology and Immunology at Tel Aviv University’s Sackler Faculty of Medicine. The study was conducted in collaboration with Dr. Ben Croker of the University of California at San Diego. Also taking part in the study were Prof. Ye Xiang of Tsinghua University in Beijing, Prof. Meital Gal-Tanamy and Dr. Moshe Dessau of Bar-Ilan University.