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Infex Therapeutics partners with CRUK Newcastle for new early-stage COVID-19 drug

Early-stage drug PAN-X shows encouraging activity during in-vitro testing

Peter Jackson

An agreement has been announced between Infex Therapeutics and CRUK Newcastle Drug Discovery Unit to in-license a therapy designed to treat SARS-CoV-2 along with future variants and a broad spectrum of coronaviruses.

In-vitro testing of the early-stage drug programme, PAN-X, has had encouraging results.

Members of the team behind the programme, led by Mike Waring, Steve Wedge and Martin Noble at CRUK Newcastle Drug Discovery Unit at Newcastle University, have previously played key roles in the discovery of pioneering lung cancer drugs.

Peter Jackson (pictured above), executive director of Infex Therapeutics, said: “This is a key programme for us in terms of developing our pipeline of therapies to tackle infectious diseases and builds upon the work we are already doing that is focused on pandemic resilience. There is a lot of interest in finding drugs that can be used both as a treatment for infected patients, helping avoid or reduce hospitalisation, as well as a preventive therapy.

“In our view, PAN-X has the potential to be a first line of defence, buying time to allow a bespoke vaccine to be produced and greatly reducing health risks if administered as a precautionary measure to vulnerable groups including the elderly, immunocompromised people and healthcare workers at risk.”

Mike Waring, CRUK Newcastle Drug Discovery Unit at Newcastle University, said: “We are delighted that Infex have been able to take on this opportunity that has the potential to translate our initial discoveries into a treatment that could be used for COVID-19 and future coronavirus threats.”

With the backing of the Hits-to-Leads programme within iiCON, the infectious disease innovation consortium led by the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, and supported by the Strength in Places Fund, the PAN-X programme is a major development of Infex’s pandemic resilience strategy.

Article by
Bryony Andrews

2nd August 2021

From: Research, Healthcare

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