Mankind Pharma partners with South Korea's Daewoong for Covid drug

Mankind said that it is working on other Covid-19 programs too. | Photo: Website
Delhi-based Mankind Pharma and South Korea's Daewoong Pharmaceutical company have joined hands to conduct clinical trials of anti-parasitic drug niclosamide for Covid-19. 

Daewoong's Indian subsidiary will join hands with Mankind for phase-1 trials of this drug after they feel there is encouraging pre-clinical evidence from treatment of Covid-19. Pre-clinical studies are conducted on animals. 

"Niclosamide is already in clinical use as an anthelmintic; however, the current formulation is expected to be a longer acting variant for this alternate clinical indication. It is also expected to circumvent the downside of oral administration," a statement said. Anthelmintics are a group of anti-parasitic drugs that expel parasitic worms and other internal parasites from the body without causing significant damage to the host. 

In a statement here Mankind claimed that in vitro (outside a living cell) Niclosamide was found to be 40, 26 and 15 times more potent than Remdesivir, Chloroquine & Ciclesonide respectively for its anti-viral action against SARS-CoV-2 virus. 

Also, the injectable intramuscular formulation of Niclosamide successfully removed the virus from lungs in animal tests, thereby countering viral infection, besides preventing cytokine storm which is the major cause of mortality in moderate to severe cases of Covid-19. 

Arjun Juneja, COO, Mankind Pharma said “We are continuously evaluating various target products for the treatment of Covid-19... We are excited to collaborate with Daewoong Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. to bring novel formulation of Niclosamide (DWRX2003) for the treatment of Covid-19 patients in India. We believe that the product would provide for a safe and effective alternative to patients suffering from this disease”.

Mankind said that it is working on other Covid-19 programs too. 

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