The Biotron (ASX:BIT) share price just exploded 86% on COVID drug update

Here’s the latest news from the biotechnology company…

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The Biotron Limited (ASX: BIT) share price is rocketing upwards today after the company announced its lead clinical asset successfully treated COVID-19 symptoms in mice as part of a study.

In the study, the drug, BIT225, was found to reduce viral load in the lungs when administered orally. BIT225 has also undergone a successful cell-based study, exhibiting its effectiveness against the virus.

At the time of writing, the Biotron share price is 8.7 cents, 70.6% higher than its previous close. However, earlier this morning it reached 9.5 cents – representing an 86% gain.

Let’s take a look at today’s news from the biotechnology company.

Biotron share price leaps on positive COVID studies

The Biotron share price is surging higher on news its drug – which is at mid-stage development for the treatment of HIV-1 and Hepatitis C virus – has demonstrated the ability to battle COVID-19 in animal and cell-based studies.

As part of the studies, mice infected with COVID-19 were given BIT225 orally.

The mice treated with BIT225 were found to have a significantly reduced virus load in the lungs and blood compared to the study’s controls.

The drug was also shown to reduce the ‘cytokine storm’ associated with COVID-19. Generally, pro-inflammatory cytokines are linked to severe illness and death in people infected with COVID-19.

Finally, treating COVID-19-infected mice with BIT225 was found to stop weight loss generally associated with COVID-19 infections in mice. In fact, the animals treated with BIT225 gained weight in line with growth expectations through the course of the study.

Additionally, BIT225 has been tested in cell cultures to determine its effectiveness against COVID-19’s Delta strain.

The data from the in-vitro study found BIT225 reduced the Delta virus in cell cultures by more than 99.99%.

Biotron is now talking with its United States-based advisors and consultants to expedite BIT225’s progression into human trials for the treatment of COVID-19.

BIT225 is an oral drug, suitable for once-a-day dosing, and has a well characterised safety profile. Formal pre-clinical studies have assessed safety over 24 weeks of dosing.

Right now, the Biotron share price is around 8% higher than it was at the start of 2021.

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