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Sorrento Identifies Second 'More Potent' Anti-COVID-19 Antibody For Clinical Testing

Shanthi Rexaline
·2 min read

Sorrento Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ: SRNE) shares are rising again following gains in the previous two sessions.

What Happened: San Diego, California-based Sorrento, which is developing antibody treatments against SARS-CoV-2, said preclinical data showed its COVI-GUARD and COVI-AMG antibodies demonstrated potent neutralizing activities against the virus that caused COVID-19.

COVI-GUARD is codenamed STI-1499 and COVI-AMG is codenamed STI-2020.

In pre-clinical cell-based assays, both the antibodies showed 100% in vitro neutralization of SARS-CoV-2 at concentrations of 6 microgram/ml and 78 ng/ml, respectively, the company said. The observed neutralization activity protected against both SARS-CoV and the highly contagious Spike D614G isolate.

Specifically, STI-2020, an affinity-matured version of the COVI-GUARD nAb, showed over 50-fold increase in potency in vitro experiments.

Related Link: The Week Ahead In Biotech: FDA Decisions For Mesoblast And Eton, Coronavirus Vaccine Updates

Outlining the key findings, Sorrento said infected hamsters treated with a single dose of 500mcg STI-2020 gained weight within 48 hours of administration compared to control animals that steadily lost weight for five days before recovery.

At day five, all STI-2020-treated hamsters had undetectable virus load in the lungs as compared to the lungs of animals in the control group, where over 1,000 infectious viral particles per gram of tissue were readily detected.

"Based on the preclinical testing we have conducted to date, STI-2020 is our most promising SARS-CoV-2 antibody so far," Sorrento said.

What's Next: STI-1499 has been cleared by the FDA for a Phase 1 clinical trial in hospitalized COVID-19 patients.

Sorrento said it will now seek IND approval for commencing the clinical study of STI-2020.

"STI-2020 has the potential to be utilized for both early and late therapeutic interventions, as well as for prophylaxis, with the potential of having a low efficacious dose, which could enable efficient manufacturing and ultimately result in higher affordability for patients," the company said.

In pre-market trading Tuesday, Sorrento shares were advancing 5.71% to $10.73.

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