The University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine is taking part in the ACTIV-2 Outpatient Monoclonal Antibodies and Other Therapeutics trial.By Nicole Ford

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — While researchers continue to work on a viable and effective coronavirus vaccine, another trial for treatment is underway in Pittsburgh.

“There will still be cases and still be a need for treatment. Part of what is being looked at is a decreased virus decrease the amount of shedding and transmission,” said Dr. Madhu Choudhary, who’s a UPMC infectious disease physician and lead investigator for the Pittsburgh trial site.

The University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine is taking part in the ACTIV-2 Outpatient Monoclonal Antibodies and Other Therapeutics trial. Pittsburgh is one of 25 trial sites across the country. The planning started in June, and the trial site went active three weeks ago.

“We are having trouble controlling transmission and it will be important to have an intervention when people are sick to help prevent them from being hospitalized or dying from the disease,” said Emily Evans, who immediately enrolled in the trial after experiencing COVID-19 symptoms on Sept. 5.

Evans is one of three participants in Pittsburgh. While in non-pandemic situations these trials could take years, researchers said this trial is adaptive and will move a lot faster with the right amount of participation across the country.

“We want 220 participants, which is 110 placebo and 110 in the investigative agent,” Dr. Choudhary said.

Evans said she just wrapped up her 21-day appointment and will be part of the trial for 24 weeks. She encourages anyone who contracts the virus to step up to the plate.

“I think it’s a great way to be part of something bigger. You are already sick, so you can contribute to what is going on right now in the country and world it just goes so much more beyond yourself,” Evans said.

If you are interested in signing up for the trial, you can find more information here or email hazcovid@pitt.edu.