- A single 200 mL convalescent plasma (CP) transfusion dose safely improved neutralizing antibodies in some severely ill COVID-19 patients in a small pilot study.
- All patients showed clinical improvement.
- Findings in unrelated case series reinforce safety, benefit.
Why this matters
- 8 newly registered clinical trials in Israel, Iran, Colombia, the United States, and China will explore CP safety and efficacy.
- Recruitment has begun in 2.
- 10 patients in pilot; median age, 52.5 (interquartile range, 45.0-59.5) years.
- Median time from symptom onset to hospitalization: 6 (2.5-8.5) days.
- Median time to CP transfusion: 16.5 (11.0-19.3) days.
- 100% (10/10) experienced improved or resolved symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath, chest pain) 1-3 days posttransfusion.
- Degree of pulmonary lesion absorption was variable.
- 7/10 showed improved lymphocyte counts: medians, 0.65×109/L before vs 0.76×109/L after transfusion.
- Overall decline in inflammatory and/or liver dysfunction markers observed.
- Increased oxygen saturation seen: median, 93.00% pretransfusion vs 96.00% posttransfusion.
- 5 had posttransfusion increase in antibody titers.
- SARS-CoV-2 RNA was undetectable in 3 patients at day 2 posttransfusion, 3 more at day 3, and 1 more at day 6; the other 3 were negative pretransfusion.
- Patient status in this pilot compared with an historical control group (all P<.001>
- Discharged: 3 vs 0.
- Much improved: 7 vs 1.
- Deaths: 0 vs 3.
- Stabilized: 10 vs 6.
- No serious adverse or safety events.
- Pilot study exploring feasibility of 200 mL CP transfusion in 10 severely ill COVID-19 patients in China.
- Funding: Ministry of Science and Technology, China.
- Unexplored confounders.
- Optimal antibodies concentration, treatment schedule unclear.