As concern around COVID-19 rises, more and more pharmaceutical companies are weighing in with their offerings.
The developments come as the UK is reporting the biggest overnight jump in cases, bringing the total to 87 infected patients.
First up, Takeda - Japan’s biggest drugmaker - has revealed that it is initiating the development of an anti-SARS-CoV-2 polyclonal hyperimmune globulin (H-IG) for the virus.
The plasma-derived therapy has previously been shown to be effective in the treatment of severe acute viral respiratory infections, and is said to be a potential treatment for COVID-19, also referred to as coronavirus.
“We will do all that we can to address the novel coronavirus threat,” said Dr Rajeev Venkayya, president of Takeda’s Vaccine Business Unit and co-lead of the company’s COVID-19 response team.
He continued to say the company has “identified relevant assets and capabilities” and that it is "hopeful that we can expand the treatment options for patients with COVID-19 and the providers caring for them.”
The business is also currently in discussions with multiple national health and regulatory agencies and health care partners in the US, Asia, and Europe to expeditiously move the research into TAK-888 forward.
Another company jumping to the ring is Arcturus, who is collaborating with Duke-NUS Medical School to develop a COVID-19 vaccine based on the company's STARR Technology.
The STARR platform combines self-replicating RNA with the lipid-mediated LUNAR nanoparticle delivery system to generate an immune response or drive therapeutic protein expression. As a result, the business says the technology "is expected to provide lower dose requirements [and] sustained protein expression compared to non-self-replicating RNA-based vaccines, and potentially enable us to produce vaccines more quickly and simply.”
Also offering its services, Veeva - the cloud-computing company for pharma and life sciences - is offering its remote engagement technology for free, in order to help pharma companies and HCPs battle the virus.
The firm says that offering its 'Veeva Engage' technology up is a response to the potentially “crippling effect” that the outbreak could have on how patients receive care, giving reps and doctors the opportunity to meet online through their preferred mobile devices to keep delivering care.
Of the 87 cases reported in the UK, there are 80 in England, three in Scotland, three in Northern Ireland and just one in Wales.