If we have learnt anything from the last two years, it’s that virus protection is not to be sniffed at
Pharma innovation specialists, Poolbeg Pharma–a recent spin-out from Open Orphan–has secured an exclusive licence for novel immunotherapy that targets respiratory virus infections. Furthermore, in a breath of fresh air for delivery systems, the antiviral will be nasally administered.
Respiratory virus infections are considered to be in the top five global killers, resulting in over three million deaths worldwide every year. Data confirms, however, that Poolbeg’s intranasal immunotherapy is effective against influenza, RSV, SARS-CoV-2n and many other deadly viruses.
The first-in-class RNA-based immunotherapy was developed at the University of Warwick and followed twenty years of research with world-class viral experts including Professor Andrew Easton and Professor Nigel Dimmock. RNA therapeutics are also a new class of medications based on ribonucleic acid.
Professor Easton, from the School of Life Sciences at the University of Warwick, explained: “Currently most respiratory virus infections cannot be treated despite being responsible for millions of deaths each year. This is a very exciting new approach with great potential. We are delighted to be developing it alongside the Poolbeg Pharma team, with their extensive knowledge and experience in the sector.”
Jeremy Skillington, CEO of Poolbeg Pharma, said: “This dual-action immunotherapy developed by the team at the University of Warwick is a really exciting technology in the field of respiratory virus disease treatments. The data shows it to rapidly reduce viral load and also prevent the likelihood of virus resistance.”
The drug works by triggering nasal cells into an antiviral state, to protect against infecting viruses, while simultaneously blocking the virus from replicating. Both of these actions can prevent disease symptoms and reduce infectiousness. The antiviral candidate could potentially provide an effective solution for protecting the patient populations at the highest risk, including the elderly, the immunosuppressed and asthmatics.