A leading Victorian company is exploring the potential for its antiviral compound to prevent and manage coronavirus (COVID-19).
Starpharma has reported that its antiviral dendrimer, Astodrimer sodium or SPL7013, has shown significant activity against SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19, in laboratory studies.
The compound has previously demonstrated potential for treatment of other diseases, showing particularly potent antiviral activity against HIV, herpes simplex, hepatitis B, the Zika virus, HPV, and adenovirus.
It inactivates viruses by blocking the interaction between viral surface proteins and the human cell receptor proteins.
Starpharma’s CEO, Dr Jackie Fairley, who also chairs the inaugural Invest Victoria Advisory Board, said that
we are very pleased to find that the compound is highly active against the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.
We are now exploring a number of product opportunities, including a potential preventative application to reduce the risk of infection. Such a product could provide additional personal protection, including for those in the frontline of this crisis, she said.
Starpharma is a world leader in the development of dendrimer products for pharmaceutical, life-science and other applications.
The company is a critical part of Victoria’s thriving medical technologies and pharmaceutical industry, which employs more than 23,000 people and generates more than $12.7 billion in revenue per year.
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