Faron gets Traumakine funding from US Department of Defense
Clinical-stage biopharmaceuticals company Faron Pharmaceuticals announced on Monday that the US Department of Defense (DoD) has selected the ‘HIBISCUS’ study to receive $6.1m (£4.5m) of funding under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.
The AIM-traded firm said the phase 2 and 3 HIBISCUS trial would assess its IV IFN beta-1a ‘Traumakine’ for the treatment of hospitalized Covid-19 patients in the United States.
It said the $6.1m of funding support for HIBISCUS required final contracting between Faron and the DoD's designated military unit, the 59th Medical Wing of the US Air Force, which was under preparation.
Faron said it had already established a working relationship with the 59th Medical Wing and the US Army Institute of Surgical Research to explore the use of Traumakine for organ protection in combat wounds leading to multi-organ failure from ischemia and reperfusion.
“IFN beta-1a has previously demonstrated a compelling argument as the body's first line of defence against viral infection,” said chief executive officer Dr Markku Jalkanen.
“Deficiency of either IFN beta or the activation of its receptor have been associated with severe COVID-19 and poor outcome.
“This validation from the DoD represents important progress for both our science and intravenous IFN beta as a potential treatment for severe COVID-19 patients.”
Faron said Traumakine was also still being investigated in the ongoing global ‘REMAP-CAP’ trial, which was evaluating potential treatments for community-acquired pneumonia, including in Covid-19 patients, and was currently ongoing across more than 200 sites and 19 countries.
At 1136 GMT, shares in Faron Pharmaceuticals were up 18.56% at 329p.