Drug company Kamada Ltd. (TASE: KMDA) reported today that it was planning to develop immunoglobin for the coronavirus that would isolate it from within blood plasma. The company already has the ability to develop blood plasma-based drugs for infectious diseases - its drug for treatment of rabies is already being marketed in the US, and will be marketed in other countries soon. Kamada recently reported that its rabies drug had a 20% market share in the US. The company also has a leading blood plasma product that is unrelated to infectious diseases, and its revenue from these two products is over $100 million a year.
Kamada's market cap today is NIS 843 million. Its share price jumped 8% following its latest announcement.
Kamada said that the development of products for coronavirus would begin soon. The source of the immunoglobin will be blood from healthy donors who have recovered from the disease. This immunoglobin will be used to treat severe cases in which patients have not developed immunity to the disease. Kamada said that the plan to develop and manufacture the product was dependent on enough people who have recovered from disease being willing to donate their blood, and on a regulatory track specified by the health authorities.
Kamada was careful to add that there was no guarantee that its plan for developing and manufacturing the product would be successful or that it would be able to bring a product to market within the time relevant for combating the disease, but stated that it had decided to make the attempt. "The current global crisis resulting from the coronavirus outbreak calls for urgent highly-focused efforts to accelerate the development and manufacturing of potential treatments, especially for life threatening situations," Kamada CEO Amir London said. "Kamada intends to utilize its proven hyper-immune IgG development experience and proprietary technology platform to initiate the development of an Anti-Corona (COVID-19) IgG product."
At a time when global attention is being drawn to infectious diseases, Kamada has announced that it has received patent approval for treatment and prevention of a disease caused by the Zika virus. The fact that Kamada has registered a patent for this technology is further evidence that the company regarded its technology as relevant to treatment of infectious diseases even before this crisis. In a model for animals, the product was show to be effective against the Zika virus. The animal trial was carried out at the US National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on March 11, 2020
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