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Positive COPD data for Synairgen's SNG001 supports COVID-19 programme

UK biotech says data is encouraging for separate trial programme in COVID-19

UK-based biotech Synairgen has revealed positive data for its inhaled drug SNG001 in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) patients, results which the company says supports its use in a separate COVID-19 programme.

Interim analysis from the phase 2 trial in COPD patients with confirmed respiratory viral infection found that treatment with SNG001 improved lung antiviral responses compared to placebo.

The trial included participants with a range of common respiratory virus infections, including rhinovirus, influenza, adenovirus, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), human metapneumovirus (HMPV), parainfluenza and coronavirus – although not the specific strain that causes COVID-19.

In exacerbating patients who already required treatment with oral corticosteroids and/or antibiotics, treatment with SNG001 also significantly improved lung function compared to those who didn’t receive the drug.

Aside from improving outcomes on these measures, SNG001 was also well-tolerated during the treatment period in a high-risk study population, with the mean age of participants being 66 years old.

“Overall, SNG001 has now been shown to raise the body’s natural viral defences when challenged by a wide variety of respiratory viruses, indicating that it could be an important treatment in the coming virus season, where there may be coinfection with influenza and other viruses alongside COVID-19,” said Richard Marsden, chief executive officer of Synairgen.

He added that, despite the encouraging data in COPD, this particular programme will be paused as the company’s “immediate priority” is to advance testing of SNG001 in COVID-19.

“We are, nevertheless, pleased to provide further evidence that supports SNG001 as a potential treatment for COVID-19 through the safety, biomarker, and efficacy data generated from patients in this interim review of the COPD trial,” said Marsden.

In July, Synairgen posted results from a phase 1 study of SNG001 in COVID-19, with the drug demonstrating a significant reduction in the risk of developing severe disease compared to placebo.

SNG001 delivers an inhaled formulation of Interferon-beta-1a (INF-beta-1a) to the lungs directly via nebulisation and has previously been tested in phase 2 trials in asthma.

INF-beta is a naturally occurring protein that controls the body’s antiviral response, and previous research has found that a lack of INF-beta production in the lungs can be linked to an increased susceptibility to develop severe respiratory symptoms as a result of viral infections.

Article by
Lucy Parsons

8th September 2020

From: Research

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