This drug, developed by Regeneron, is a monoclonal antibody cocktail. The drug is not approved for use, however, when Trump was hospitalized after a positive test for covid, he was given an infusion as an exception - there is an unregistered drug program for humanitarian reasons that allows this, writes The Guardian.
The stem cells used in the production of the drug belong to the line HEK 293 (Human Embryonic Kidney 293), and they were originally obtained from human embryonic kidneys. This would not be surprising, since such cells are widely used today in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries, but Trump is known as a principled opponent of abortion and the use of embryonic cells. His administration is consistently working to limit the possibility of voluntary termination of pregnancy, and anti-abortionists are among the most fervent fans of the GOP and Trump personally. In addition, his administration last year suspended government funding for research involving embryonic stem cells, which, according to the journal Science, was worth about $ 31 million.
Regeneron does not consider HEK 293 cells to be embryonic tissue. Despite the fact that initially, in the 1970s, they were obtained from an abortive culture of human embryonic kidney cells, today HEK 293 belongs to the so-called. "Immortalized cell line" and reproduced by dividing in vitro.
The Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Agency (Barda) has given the companies a $ 450 million grant to develop their antibody cocktail. To date, the drug has been tested in only 275 people and is not available to the general public, but the approximate cost of treatment with drugs of this type costs an average of $ 96,000 per course.