Infectious disease company Poolbeg Pharma has secured a licence to develop an immunotherapy treatment to target respiratory virus infections, which could include Covid-19.
The dual antiviral prophylactic and therapeutic candidate, which is at a late-pre-clinical development stage, was developed at the University of Warwick and derived from 20 years of research with virologists Prof Andrew Easton and Prof Nigel Dimmock.
Data confirms this immunotherapy asset targets pan-respiratory virus infections, which could include influenza, respiratory syncytial virus, SARS-CoV-2, and others.
Administered intra-nasally, this RNA-based immunotherapy works by triggering nasal cells into an antiviral state to protect from the infecting virus. Simultaneously, it blocks the cells from making more virus by directly preventing its replication.
Both modes of action combined can reduce infectious viral loads and improve disease symptoms.
Respiratory virus infections are considered a top five global killer resulting in more than three million annual deaths worldwide.
There is a significant unmet need for improved respiratory virus infection therapies and the current available treatments, vaccines and antiviral drugs, are typically pathogen specific.