20 Apr 2020
Posted in Pharma
Neurimmune and Ethris recovered patients antibody treatment for COVID-19 could remove plasma treatment bottleneck
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread, collaborations between companies with differing areas of expertise could accelerate the availability of a treatment for the disease. Neurimmune and Ethris’ collaboration could produce a recovered patient antibody treatment that could be rapidly delivered to patients without requiring continued recovered patients’ plasma donations or continued verification of the antibodies in the plasma. This would obviate a potential bottleneck that plasma treatments could cause, says GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.
Johanna Swanson, Project Manager at GlobalData, comments: “The collaboration with Ethris will allow Neurimmune to utilize its expertise in identifying human anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies from the immunoglobulin sequence of recovered COVID-19 patients. Its reverse translational medicine technology utilizes high-throughput analyses of the immune response to disease antigens and creates high-affinity antibodies specific to the disease.
“Ethris will provide expertise in the delivery mechanism for antibodies. The company has developed a strong platform for the treatment of pulmonary disorders, a specialized delivery technique that allows the use of messenger ribonucleic acid (RNA) as a therapeutic agent. SNIM® RNA Technology involves chemical modifications to the messenger RNA (mRNA), allowing the normally unstable mRNA to evade the innate immune system. The antibodies identified by Neurimmune will be translated into therapeutic SNIM® RNA products for inhalation.”
SNIM® RNA antibodies can be repeatedly administered via inhalation, which causes sustained production of the therapeutic proteins in the patient’s lungs.
Swanson continues: “As these antibodies will be directly administered and produced in the patient’s lungs, this method holds promise for targeting COVID-19. Moreover, this treatment has the potential to be effective for all COVID-19 patients, as it is so highly targeted.”
The current development plans call for clinical testing to begin in Q4, 2020, and the companies plan to initiate manufacturing the treatment in the summer. This timing depends upon regulatory approval for the treatment, which—given the urgency of the need for effective treatments—could be expedited using the FDA’s Coronavirus Treatment Acceleration Program, which aims to deliver new COVID-19 treatments as rapidly as possible.