Lexaria Bioscience Corp (OTCQB:LXRP) (CSE:LXX) announced Tuesday that its ethics board has approved a pilot human study evaluating the ability of its DehydraTECH drug delivery platform to boost the effectiveness of antiviral drugs being studied against coronavirus strains.
Lexaria initially announced plans for the study in March, and now that the company has the blessing of its ethics board, it will begin the process of filing for approval from federal regulators.
“We are excited at this progress towards our pilot human study using our patented DehydraTECH platform in the delivery of antiviral drugs, and are continuing the process towards regulatory approval so we can advance this important study,” CEO Chris Bunka said in a statement.
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Lexaria also announced the launch of a separate rodent antiviral study to evaluate potential pharmacokinetic benefits of DehydraTECH in the delivery of two classes of antiviral drugs being investigated as treatments for COVID-19. Dosing of the rodents has already begun and results are expected in December, the company said.
“We are pleased to have started an animal study using DehydraTECH on certain potential COVID-19 drugs under investigation,” Bunka said. “Not only will this study help to determine whether DehydraTECH is capable of delivering higher proportionate doses of the antiviral drugs than generic versions of the drugs, but the outcomes should also be beneficial in gaining regulatory approval for the planned human study.”
Many antiviral drugs are fat-soluble and present bioavailability challenges in reaching the human bloodstream when taken orally, the company said. Lexaria’s expertise in the oral delivery of fat-soluble drugs could improve the administration of antiviral drugs, potentially removing the need for injection treatments, which are both more costly and less comfortable, the company added.
If Lexaria’s technology is proven to increase the delivery effectiveness of antiviral drugs, the company said it will make its technology available to researchers throughout the world looking to maximize the effectiveness of their own drug investigations.
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