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Immuron share price shoots 90% higher on potential COVID-19 treatment news

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The Immuron Limited (ASX: IMC) share price is up by 89.80% to 46 cents per share this morning on news that Immuron’s product IMM-124E has neutralising activity against the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), the virus that causes COVID-19.

This follows on from another positive announcement yesterday that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) provided guidance about the development pathway for Immuron’s new oral therapeutic drugs.

What sent Immuron’s share price skyrocketing?

The Immuron share price has shot higher in early trade following news that IMM-124E, which is used in the manufacture of Immuron’s flagship drugs Travelan and Protectyn, demonstrates antiviral activity against COVID-19 in laboratory testing.

Trevelan is Immuron’s only drug that currently generates revenue and is predominantly used to reduce the risk of traveller’s diarrhoea and minor gastro-intestinal disorders. It is licensed in Australia, Canada and sold as a dietary supplement in the US.

The company reports that the cytopathic effect inhibition cell-based assay was established and performed by 360 biolabs, a Melbourne-based contract research organisation. All 4 of the tests performed saw inhibition of Covid-19 of at least 50%. Higher concentrations of IMM-124E stemmed the virus replication by up to 90%. None of the tests demonstrated any cell toxicity.

Commenting on the early results, Immuron CEO Dr Jerry Kanellos stated: 

The preliminary data set we have generated potentially offers a new oral therapeutic approach to target and directly inhibit the virus in the Gastrointestinal tract and warrants further evaluation to identify the inhibitory substances in our products. The company has filed a provisional patent application in respect of the findings.

What now for Immuron?

Immuron is an Australian biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercialising oral immunotherapeutics for the prevention and treatment of gut-mediated pathogens such as campylobacteriosis and E. coli (ETEC).

After languishing around the 12 cent mark over the past year, the Immuron share price has seen a stark reversal in fortunes, jumping 275% on 9 June alone, in response to news of briefing documentation being submitted to the FDA. The Immuron share price is up 253% year to date, and currently sits at 46 cents per share.

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Motley Fool contributor Daniel Ewing has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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