Franciscan Health taking part in COVID-19 antibody clinical trial

Emily Cornpropst.JPG
Posted at 4:56 PM, Jul 29, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-29 19:22:21-04

INDIANAPOLIS — An antibody therapy created from one of the very first people in the U.S. to recover from COVID-19 is being tested on people with the virus right here in Indiana.

Eli Lilly has selected hospitals as research sites and now they need adults who have tested positive for the virus to participate in the study.

Franciscan Health is one of just 24 hospitals across the country that has been chosen to take part in this new clinical study. They are putting out the call to action right now to adults 18 and older who have recently tested positive for COVID-19 to take part.

LEARN MORE | Participate in the COVID-19 antibody clinical trial

"It was all kind of a blur when I was sick sitting at home, feeling miserable, trying to stay away from my family," ER nurse Emily Cornpropst said.

It started as a fever on March 15. Cornpropst said it then developed into a dry cough. Eventually, she lost her sense of taste and smell and tested positive for COVID-19.

Cornpropst finally tested negative and was able to return to work taking care of other COVID patients.

"My grandfather actually came down with the virus and was transported from New Castle to Franciscan and did receive a plasma donation," Cornpropst said. "Unfortunately, he did end up passing away. He was 94 years old and his body just couldn't take the virus."

Based on her experience, Cornpropst said it is exciting to know the hospital where she works was chosen to take part in the trial, called the Blaze-1 Study. Dr. Imad Shawa is the principal investigator for the hospital.

"We will be infusing this antibody that is directed against a protein at the surface of the virus and hoping it will basically neutralize the virus and prevent it from entering our cells and replicating," Shawa said.

Some patients will receive the trial and others will receive placebo — or water. The staff and patient will not know which until the end.

Staff members will monitor the patient's health throughout the trial.

To be eligible for the Blaze-1 study, you must have tested positive for COVID-19 three days prior to the study drug infusion. They are looking for patients who have mild symptoms and are not hospitalized.

If you have tested positive and exhibited symptoms for COVID-19 and wish to participate in the COVID-19 antibody clinical trial you can call 833-277-0197 to learn more.