Real World Evidence of Neutralizing Monoclonal Antibodies for Preventing Hospitalization and Mortality in COVID-19 Outpatients

medRxiv [Preprint]. 2022 Jan 11:2022.01.09.22268963. doi: 10.1101/2022.01.09.22268963.


Background: Neutralizing monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) are authorized for early symptomatic COVID-19 patients. Whether mAbs are effective against the SARS-CoV-2 Delta variant, among vaccinated patients, or for prevention of mortality remains unknown.

Objective: To evaluate the effectiveness of mAb treatment in preventing progression to severe disease during the Delta phase of the pandemic and based on key baseline risk factors.

Design setting and patients: Observational cohort study of non-hospitalized adult patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection from November 2020-October 2021, using electronic health records from a statewide health system plus state-level vaccine and mortality data. Using propensity matching, we selected approximately 2.5 patients not receiving mAbs for each patient who received mAbs.

Exposure: Neutralizing mAb treatment under emergency use authorization.

Main outcomes: The primary outcome was 28-day hospitalization; secondary outcomes included mortality and severity of hospitalization.

Results: Of 36,077 patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection, 2,675 receiving mAbs were matched to 6,677 not receiving mAbs. Compared to mAb-untreated patients, mAb-treated patients had lower all-cause hospitalization (4.0% vs 7.7%; adjusted OR 0.48, 95%CI 0.38-0.60) and all-cause mortality (0.1% vs. 0.9%; adjusted OR 0.11, 95%CI 0.03-0.29) to day 28; differences persisted to day 90. Among hospitalized patients, mAb-treated patients had shorter hospital length of stay (5.8 vs. 8.5 days) and lower risk of mechanical ventilation (4.6% vs. 16.6%). Relative effectiveness was similar in preventing hospitalizations during the Delta variant phase (adjusted OR 0.35, 95%CI 0.25-0.50) and across subgroups. Lower number-needed-to-treat (NNT) to prevent hospitalization were observed for subgroups with higher baseline risk of hospitalization (e.g., multiple comorbidities (NNT=17) and not fully vaccinated (NNT=24) vs. no comorbidities (NNT=88) and fully vaccinated (NNT=81).

Conclusion: Real-world evidence demonstrated mAb effectiveness in reducing hospitalization among COVID-19 outpatients, including during the Delta variant phase, and conferred an overall 89% reduction in 28-day mortality. Early outpatient treatment with mAbs should be prioritized, especially for individuals with highest risk for hospitalization.

Publication types

  • Preprint