Immunic begins phase II immunotherapy for COVID-19

By The Science Advisory Board staff writers

June 15, 2020 -- Immunic has enrolled the first COVID-19 patients in a phase II clinical trial of IMU-838, a selective oral dihydroorotate dehydrogenase (DHODH) inhibitor.

Approximately 230 patients will be enrolled in 10 to 35 centers in the U.S., Germany, and other European countries. The study will be a prospective, multicenter, randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind clinical trial in patients with moderate COVID-19, designed to evaluate efficacy, safety, and tolerability of IMU-838. Data is expected to be available later this year.

To date, IMU-838 has already been tested in about 650 individuals in previous studies.

IMU-838 is an orally available, next-generation selective immune modulator that inhibits intracellular metabolism of activated immune cells (T and B cells) by blocking the DHODH enzyme. The molecule has also been shown to possess antiviral effects, independent of specific viral proteins, indicating that it may be broadly applicable against multiple viruses.

IMU-838 is also being tested for treatment of relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis, ulcerative colitis, and Crohn's disease.

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