Gov. deal could make Lilly antibody therapy a blockbuster

Oct. 28, 2020

The U.S. government has struck a deal to purchase an Eli Lilly and Co. antibody therapy for COVID-19 that could be worth up to $1.19 billion.

Under the deal, the government will pay $375 million for 300,000 doses of the treatment within two months of receiving an emergency use authorization (EUA) from the FDA. After the initial delivery, the government has the option to purchase another 650,000 doses for $812.5 million.

The news comes one day after Lilly announced that the antibody therapy, bamlanivimab, was shown to be ineffective on patients hospitalized with COVID-19. But the therapy is currently in several other trials as a treatment for non-hospitalized patients and as a preventative therapy for residents and staff at long-term facilities. Lilly has already submitted an EUA application for bamlanivimab based on trial results on patients with mild to moderate COVID-19 symptoms. 

Under the deal, the cost of the antibody therapy will be $1,250 per dose, but they will be given to the American public for free.

As part of Operation Warp Speed, the U.S. government has also struck deals to support the development of AstraZeneca’s antibody therapy and manufacturing for Regeneron’s antibody treatment.

Read the full Reuters report.