Covid-19: Overview

COVID-19: Global Effort to Stop a Global Virus

In April 2020, Allarity Therapeutics entered into an agreement with the Pathogen and Microbiome Institute at Northern Arizona University (NAU) to test the antiviral activity of stenoparib (formerly 2X-121) against COVID-19. Read the press release here

In August 2020, Allarity announced that stenoparib had shown anti-viral activity against Coronavirus in pre-clinical studies. Read the press release here.

In November 2020, a preprint article with the title ‘Stenoparib, an inhibitor of cellular poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP), blocks replication of the SARS-CoV-2 human coronavirus in vitro’ was published. Read the article here.  

Pivoting to Help the Global Crisis; Advancing Stenoparib Into Human Clinical Trials as a Potential Therapy for COVID-19.

Our team, like many others in our industry, has been watching closely the developments in the global effort to stem the COVID-19 pandemic. Noting in a scientific publication that another PARP inhibitor, mefuparib (CVL218), had shown promising antiviral activity against the virus that causes COVID-19, Allarity quickly pivoted and began evaluating  stenoparib, our dual PARP and Tankyrase Inhibitor in Phase 2 development for ovarian cancer, as a potential treatment for COVID-19.

We have been working with NUA, a leading U.S. infectious disease test center, on a preclinical program to assess the ability of stenoparib to block the infection of cells and replication of coronavirus. In a series of preclinical studies, stenoparib showed inhibitory activity against coronavirus in LLC-MK2 cells as a single agent. In addition, stenoparib in combination with remdesivir was active in inhibiting SARS-Cov-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, in VERO E6 cells. The concentration of stenoparib required for virus inhibition was lower in the combination study than in the single agent study. 

The two drugs target the virus through unique but different mechanisms of action. Remdesivir blocks the RNA replication enzyme, while stenoparib, as an inhibitor of PARP1/PARP2 (Poly ADP-Ribose Polymerases) and tankyrase 1 and 2 inhibits virus assembly and inhibits the negative effects of virus infection on the human body such as cytokine storm and necrosis.

The preclinical testing has been conducted at the Pathogen and Microbiome Institute at Northern Arizona University (NAU). NAU built the Pathogen and Microbiome Institute labs in 2008 to enable researchers to handle dangerous pathogens, including research on diseases such as West Nile virus and Zika virus.