Starpharma says SPL7013 in VIRALEZE virucidal against influenza A and B

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Starpharma (ASX:SPL) says SPL7013, the antiviral agent in VIRALEZE nasal spray, achieved 95 per cent and 99.7 per cent reduction in viral infectivity against two significant types of influenza virus, A and B, respectively, in virucidal assays.

The company said the virucidal assays conducted at the Scripps Research Institute in the US assessed the irreversible nature of the effect of a compound against viruses.

In addition to testing the virucidal activity of SPL7013, the Scripps testing assessed the activity of two antiviral agents used in widely available nasal sprays - hydroxypropyl methyl cellulose (HPMC) and iota-carrageenan. THe copany said HPMC and iota-carrageenan did not exhibit virucidal effect in this experiment, even after 30 minutes.

"These new virucidal findings are consistent with the previously reported activity of SPL7013 against multiple variants of SARS-CoV-2, including Delta, Alpha, Beta, Gamma, and Omicron, as well as other respiratory viruses that cause the common cold," said the company.

"The broad-spectrum antiviral and virucidal activity of SPL7013 (VIRALEZE), which encompasses all of the pandemic-causing respiratory viruses, highlights the opportunities for VIRALEZE in combatting seasonal flu epidemics as well as pandemic preparedness.

"The rapid virucidal effect of SPL7013 against multiple respiratory viruses, including influenza viruses and multiple variants of SARS-CoV-2, is a positive and differentiating feature of VIRALEZE compared with other antiviral compounds used in marketed nasal sprays. The excellent stability of SPL7013 and room temperature storage of VIRALEZE are also significant advantages for the product."

CEO Dr Jackie Fairley said, Influenza is one of the most common respiratory infections globally, resulting in high rates of morbidity and mortality. Starpharma is pleased to share these new results in influenza for SPL7013, the agent in VIRALEZE. Of particular note is the superior performance of SPL7013, which demonstrated highly potent and rapid virucidal activity in influenza A and B compared to other antiviral agents used in widely available nasal sprays.”