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Eli Lilly slumps after earnings miss, paused COVID-19 antibody trial

Yahoo finance’s Anjalee Khemlani and Zack Guzman break down the latest surrounding Eli Lilly's vaccine trial.

Video Transcript

Zack Guzman: I want to kick off the show here by keeping the earnings train rolling. We got the latest update from Eli Lilly, shares in the red after reporting weaker than expected earnings for the third quarter. The company also announced it would be ending its study on its antibody cocktail treatment for patients later on in their battles with COVID-19.

There's still tests and data to show for people earlier in their battles with COVID 19, but for more on that, I want to bring on Yahoo Finance's Anjalee Khemlani to kick things off for us today with a look at Eli Lilly, Anjalee.

Anjalee Khemlani: Thanks, Zack As you mentioned, that was basically the crux of it. We see that Eli Lilly saw results that show that it did not, in fact, have much of an impact on those hospitalized patients. And so, moving forward, it's going to look at those that are not in the hospital, and those who have more moderate symptoms.

And so that's something that is increasingly being looked at really in the sort of treatment sphere when you talk about what can be done to help curb the outbreak. While everyone has their hopes pinned on a vaccine, there's been a lot of complaints, if you will, or criticism that there's too much emphasis on the vaccine side, and that there are other methods that need to be looked at.

We know that, with Eli Lilly now gone from that hospital segment, that leaves Regeneron as sort of a leader there. We've already seen it used with the president as well. So, going to interesting to see how this really gets together, because these antibody treatments are supposed to be the strongest among them. Even though they might be more expensive, they're supposed to be one of the better options out there right now. To date, as we know, only remdesivir has been fully approved for treatment.

Zack Guzman: Yeah, again, important to note that this is something that they're looking at still for earlier on, in patients that might not be so far along in battling COVID 19, requiring intense hospitalization there. But outside of the antibody cocktail treatment options, we are still waiting to see more data come in, in terms of vaccine candidates.

We know that there are few right now in their late stages, but on that front, Pfizer gave investors the update on their third quarter as well as the important update in that late stage trial that has extended enrollment in the trial, more than 40,000 patients there. So what's the latest we're hearing from Pfizer on that front?

Anjalee Khemlani: That's correct. So Pfizer right now is looking at its last stage of the trial, and it's really the furthest along among the candidates in the US. As it stands right now, they have more than 42,000 enrolled, and more than half of those have already received their second dose. Now remember, that's the important mile marker when it comes to how close they are to getting those first look results.

And so what happens now is, after the second dose is received, there's an observation period of two months. And that's something that the FDA most recently sort of agreed on. And what we will be able to find out is whether or not a certain number of people-- after a certain number of people are infected within that trial group, they will then check on that data to see if those people who were infected are largely from the placebo group.

And if that's the case, then they can move on to applying for an EUA. So that's where it stands right now, they're expecting this to happen around the third week of November, which is a little bit of a push out initially. They had eyed the end of October as really that point, but with the new FDA guidelines, had to push that out. So if all goes well, if everything runs smoothly, they could be the first to apply for an emergency use authorization by the end of the year.

Zack Guzman: And we'll see what happens on that front. And I know you were able to catch up with Dr. Anthony Fauci on that topic here, just recently. We'll have that full live interview coming up on the show in just a bit, but Yahoo Finance's Anjalee Khemlani breaking it all down for us. Much appreciate that.