Antiviral Oral Medicine Emerges as Potential COVID-19 Treatment and Companies Make Strategic Alliance

Appili Therapeutics and AiPharma Global Holdings announced a strategic alliance to advance the global development of a broad-spectrum antiviral treatment in oral tablet form for the treatment of COVID-19.

On Sept. 29, 2021, Appili Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical company specializing in infectious diseases, and AiPharma Global Holdings, a private pharmaceutical research, development, and commercialization company, announced a strategic alliance to advance the global development of a broad-spectrum antiviral treatment in oral tablet form, Avigan/Reeqonus (favipiravir), for the treatment of COVID-19 and other infectious diseases.

FUJIFILM Toyama Chemical developed Avigan/Reeqonus (favipiravir), and favipiravir was approved in Japan as a treatment and stockpile countermeasure for pandemic influenza. The Japanese government also agreed to purchase more than 65 million tablets. In addition, Russia, Thailand, Indonesia, India, and Malaysia approved favipiravir-based antiviral medications for the emergency treatment of COVID-19 after promising clinical trials.

There are other ongoing clinical trials for favipiravir for the treatment of COVID-19 in several countries, including the United States, China, India, and the United Kingdom. Appili is conducting a Phase III COVID-19 treatment trial (PRESECO). Favipiravir has been studied in human trials outside of North America and has a known safety profile. In authorized countries, hundreds of thousands of patients have received favipiravir during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The alliance between the companies includes:

  • Accelerated and strengthened development of Avigan/Reeqonus
  • Access to cash flows tied to growing worldwide sales
  • Establishment of a joint scientific steering committee to coordinate the rapid development of Avigan/Reeqonus
  • Equity transaction, under which a stock swap will align both companies more closely, demonstrating their shared interest in increasing sales of the antiviral oral medicine worldwide and to further develop both organization's pipelines

Source: Appili Therapeutics