The European Investment Bank (EIB) has signed a pair of financing agreements, worth up to EUR 24 million and EUR 24.5 million respectively, with southern German company Atriva Therapeutics and the German subsidiary of US biotech Immunic Therapeutics, for the research, development and testing of medications to fight Covid-19 and other conditions.
“Atriva’s ATR-002 molecule is the only host-cell targeting antiviral therapeutic specifically developed to treat severe respiratory infections caused by RNA (ribonucleic acid) viruses,” Atriva wrote on its website. “It may prevent progression to critical-stage COVID-19 in hospitalized patients and holds strong potential in the current pandemic.”
“The funding commitment by the EIB is a confirmation of its faith in Immunic’s ability to advance our lead asset, IMU-838, a selective oral DHODH inhibitor, which has shown strong antiviral activity in preclinical testing as a potential treatment for COVID-19,” said Immunic Chief Executive Officer and President Daniel Vitt on his firm’s website.
The monies are backed by the Infectious Diseases Finance Facility (IDFF) set up as part of the EU’s Horizon 2020 program, which has lent out around EUR 400 million to companies developing cures treatments and vaccines for infectious diseases.
“The European Union is doing all in its power to protect Europeans against coronavirus,” said EU Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth Mariya Gabriel. “The European Commission is coordinating the Coronavirus Global Response, the global action for universal access to tests, treatments and vaccines against coronavirus and for the global recovery.”