Israel is facing a fourth wave of COVID-19 due to the contagious Delta variant, but there is hopeful news on the horizon. Prof. Dror Mevorach, head of one of Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem’s COVID-19 units, is at the forefront of a new experimental Israeli drug called Allocetra™ that is helping severely ill COVID patients.
Prof. Mevorach shares how Allocetra™ works and more in the Season 3 premiere episode of the Hadassah On Call podcast, “New Hope in the Fight Against COVID-19.” During the episode, he tackles pressing COVID-related topics, including Israel's administration of vaccine booster shots, fighting the Delta variant and how Allocetra™ is saving lives.
What makes Allocetra™ so effective? According to Prof. Mevorach, the drug — currently in a Phase IIb clinical trial — can prevent COVID-19 patients from being put on a ventilator, which is a critical turning point for patients suffering from the virus.
"It was amazing," says Prof. Mevorach, noting that a majority of patients who received the new treatment in the clinical trial "were able to leave the hospital in a couple of days...without a ventilator."
This new treatment also targets the side effects of the virus such as organ failure and lung damage — not the virus itself — which means that it will be effective against any COVID-19 variant. Even more impressively, Prof. Mevorach is studying how Allocetra™ could be used to help cancer patients.
Reflecting on what he's learned during the global pandemic, Prof. Mevorach is proud of Hadassah's medical teams for their tireless work and dedication to fight COVID-19. "Corona gave us this opportunity to work together," says Prof. Mevorach, adding, "There was a special spirit of coming together, of dedicating ourselves to the mission...I was amazed by the spirit of the team."
Listen now to the first episode of Hadassah On Call's brand-new season, hosted by journalist Benyamin Cohen, and share with your family and friends!