NanoViricides, Inc. (OTC BB: NNVC.OB) (the "Company") reported dramatically improved antiviral efficacy with its optimized FluCide™ drug candidates in its most recent animal study. In the influenza mouse lethal infection model, animals treated with one of the optimized FluCide™ nanoviricide drug candidates survived beyond the stated full duration of study (21 days), and those treated with two additional drug candidates survived almost the full duration of the study. Animals in these three groups survived significantly longer (20.2 to 22.2 days) as compared to the animals treated with Oseltamivir (Tamiflu®; only 8.3 days).
The studies were conducted by Dr. Krishna Menon, PhD, VMD, MRCS, at KARD Scientific, MA. One million virus particles of Influenza A Strain A/WS/33 (H1N1) were aspirated directly into the lungs of mice. The same quantity of virus infection was repeated at 22 hrs. This influenza model was designed to be uniformly fatal in 100% of the infected, untreated animals within 5 days after infection. Treatment with the FluCide candidates and Tamiflu® (Roche) commenced 24 hours after the first viral infection. The duration of study was set at 21 days in the protocol. It was extended in order to properly evaluate the longest surviving animals.
The Company had previously reported 18.3 days mean survival with its then best anti-influenza drug candidate in the same animal model. Since then the Company says its FluCide program has progressed to process chemistry optimizations that were expected to provide additional benefits in terms of efficacy and safety improvements. The Company now reports that these improvements have led to animal survival over the full defined 21 day duration of study for one drug candidate, with two additional drug candidates close behind the top candidate, at 20.2 and 20.4 days.
"We believe that we may have more than quadrupled the efficacy of our FluCide candidates since the last study, based on the survival data," said Anil R. Diwan, PhD, President, adding, "We believe that current anti-influenza drugs would not match the efficacy levels achieved by our FluCide drug candidates, even at high dosages due to the former's dose-limiting toxicities."
Additional clinically important parameters including viral load and lung histopathology, are being analyzed to confirm the therapeutic potential of the FluCide drug candidates. The results of these investigations will be reported as they become available.
"We eagerly await the viral load and histopathology results to guide our next steps in this program," said Randall Barton, PhD, Chief Scientific Officer of the Company.