Phase II results from Atea Pharmaceuticals Inc. with AT-527 in COVID-19 treatment had pundits scrambling to stack the odds of success for the direct-acting oral antiviral against those of Merck & Co. Inc.’s molnupiravir, though cross-trial comparisons are beset by the usual hurdles, with two especially dramatic ones.
Blocking the interaction between two dengue virus (DENV) nonstructural proteins, NS3 and NS4B, with a newly developed small-molecule inhibitor resulted in potent antiviral activity in mouse models, according to an international collaborative study led by scientists at the University of Leuven (KU Leuven), CD3 the Centre for Drug Design and Discovery in Leuven, and Janssen Pharmaceutica in Beerse, Belgium.
If the FDA follows the advice of its Antimicrobial Drugs Advisory Committee, Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd.’s antiviral drug, maribavir, will become the first drug approved in the U.S. to treat resistant or refractory cytomegalovirus infection and disease in both solid organ and hematopoietic stem cell transplant recipients.
Merck & Co. Inc. and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics Inc. are planning a U.S. emergency filing for potentially the first oral antiviral for COVID-19, after a phase III trial showed molnupiravir cut risk of hospitalization or death by around 50%.
The race to develop better antivirals for COVID-19 is heating up after Pfizer Inc. and Merck & Co. Inc. pushed ahead with clinical development of late-stage candidates, while Rigel Pharmaceuticals Inc. announced encouraging midstage data.
PARIS – At some point, scientists reported, it may be possible to quarantine viruses rather than humans. For the last two years, European research consortium Virofight has been working on a form of nanotechnology intended to neutralize viruses such as SARS-CoV-2, HIV, influenza and hepatitis viruses.
PERTH, Australia – Starpharma Holdings Ltd. is pausing sales of its antiviral nasal spray, Viraleze (SPL-7013), in the U.K. after its retail partner, Lloydspharmacy, received a letter from the U.K.’s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) related to promotional claims made about the antiviral with respect to SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19.
New phase III data on Celltrion Inc.'s COVID-19 therapy, regdanvimab, showed it reduced the risk of hospitalization or death related to the disease for high-risk patients to 3.1% vs. 11.1% for placebo by day 28 of the study. The treatment also proved beneficial to participants across all risk categories, reducing their risk of hospitalization or death to 2.4% vs. 8% for placebo at the same time point.