Healthcare Business

NanoViricides COVID-19 Treatment Offers Alternative to Antibodies

NanoViricides Inc. (NYSE: NNVC) made another stride in the fight against COVID-19, and investors have to be happy about it. The company released results from its study evaluating drug candidates that treat a spectrum of COVID-19 diseases in an animal model.

The nanoviricides drug candidates tested in this safety and tolerability study previously demonstrated strong effectiveness against lung infection by a SARS-CoV-2-like coronavirus; namely, hCoV-NL63.

Three different drug candidates at three different dosage levels and vehicle control were administered to separate groups of mice intravenously in the safety and tolerability study. Ultimately, the drug candidates were safe and well tolerated, which in turn has cleared the path for further development toward a treatment for SARS-CoV-2 infection that has caused the current COVID-19 pandemic.

One important thing that stands out for this company is that nanoviricides are designed to act by a novel mechanism of action, trapping the virus particle. On the other hand, antibody treatments only label the virus to be attacked by other components of the immune system.

Additionally, it is well known that viruses escape antibody-drugs via mutations. The firm’s “nanoviricide” drug candidates, in contrast, are designed to be broad-spectrum and prevent the virus from escaping by mutations — or at least making this unlikely.

Previously, the firm reported that these drug candidates have shown strong effectiveness in a lethal lung infection model in rats using a coronavirus that uses the same ACE2 receptor as SARS-CoV-2.

Prior to filing for human clinical trials, NanoViricides plans on conducting studies, toward clinical candidate selection, to further determine the effectiveness against SARS-CoV-2. The company will perform additional drug development studies as may be necessary and request a pre-IND meeting with the U.S. FDA for regulatory guidance.

NanoViricides stock traded up about 30% on Wednesday, at $8.95 in a 52-week range of $1.27 to $19.20.