After the Department of Ohthalmology at Universitätsklinikum Erlangen announced their global breakthrough in early July 2021 of successfully treating a Long COVID patient (aged 59), two further patients are now on the road to recovery thanks to the drug BC 007. The team at the Department of Ophthalmology has used the approach to treat two more patients. A 51 year old man from the Allgäu region and a 39 year old woman from Middle Franconia both received the active ingredient BC 007 intravenously in an infusion lasting 75 minutes, and were then kept in the hospital for monitoring for a further three days. They have continued to attend outpatient appointments to monitor their health ever since. Both patients have already reported significant improvements in their performance and quality of life, and this has been corroborated in medical tests.
Following the pattern seen in the patient who was treated first, BC 007 also caused Long COVID symptoms in these patients to subside shortly after it was administered. ‘After someone contracts COVID-19, special autoantibodies start to circulate in their bloodstream. These then turn on the body itself and may damage certain structures within the body or affect circulation,’ explains ophthalmologist PD Dr. Dr. Bettina Hohberger. The drug BC 007 was developed several years ago, originally for patients with severe heart disease, but could now potentially be used in the fight against Long COVID. ‘In both patients currently being treated, we can see that BC 007 neutralises the harmful autoantibodies and retinal micro circulation, in other words blood flow in the smallest blood vessels in the eye, improves. We can prove that this is the case using optical coherence tomography angiography, or OCT-A for short. In addition, both patients experienced a reduction in their clinical Long COVID symptoms,’ confirmed Bettina Hohberger.