[Photo by Korea United Pharm]
Korea United Pharm said on Tuesday its investigatioal compound UI030 being developed as a potential cure for Covid-19 has been proven effective against the virus in a preclinical animal model.
The new efficacy data were part of document submissions required by local health authorities for regulatory review of a Phase 2 clinical trial protocol.
UI030 is a budesonide formulation which works by preventing inflammation n the lungs.
Budesonide is widely used in the long-term management of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmoary disease.
In the preclinical test, virus potency was compared between groups of hamsters after coronavirus infection. A group treated with budesonide in combination with arformoterol, a long-acting β2 adrenoreceptor agonist, showed a virus reduction of about 90 percent compared to three other groups: untreated, arformoterol alone, and budesonide alone, the company said.
In a recent Oxford Univ. study, inhaled budesonide given to patients with Covid-19 within seven days of the onset of symptoms reduced recovery time, as well as the risk of emergency care or hospitalization.
The company said it will submit the new preclinical data and a Phase 1 clinic trial data to the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety in May to seek approval of its ensuing studies.
By Chung Ji-sung and Minu Kim
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