Encouraging results from trial of inhaled drug to help COVID-19 patients

The University of Southampton and drug-development-company Synairgen plc have announced positive results from clinical trials of a drug (SNG001 — inhaled formulation of interferon beta) that may prevent worsening of COVID-19 in those most at risk.

The odds of developing severe disease (e.g. requiring ventilation or resulting in death) during the treatment period (day 1 to day 16) were significantly reduced by 79 per cent for patients receiving SNG001, compared to patients who received placebo.

Patients who received the drug were also more than twice as likely to recover (defined as no limitation of activities’ or no clinical or virological evidence of infection’) over the course of the treatment period compared to those receiving placebo.

In addition, the measure of breathlessness was markedly reduced in patients who received SNG001 compared to those receiving placebo. Three subjects (six per cent) died after being randomised to placebo. There were no deaths among subjects treated with SNG001.

Professor Tom Wilkinson, Professor of Respiratory Medicine at the University of Southampton and Trial Chief Investigator, commented: We are delighted with the positive data produced from this trial, which is the result of a momentous coordinated effort from Synairgen, the University of Southampton, University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust and the highly expert research teams across the NIHR network and regulatory bodies in the UK. Click her to read more