NanoViricides, a development stage company, has reported that oral administration of their FluCide anti-influenza drug led to survival improvements comparable to IV administration.

Two different anti-influenza drug candidates were tested in the oral vs IV comparison, and both showed similar results that indicated stronger oral effectiveness than oseltamivir (Tamiflu).

The study involved the highly lethal animal model used by NanoViricides in its influenza drug development programme.

NanoViricides CEO Dr Eugene Seymour said the results showed FluCide could be developed as an oral drug for out-patient influenza.

"Many drugs are commercialised as oral drugs even if the oral dose needed is as high as five times the injectable dose," Seymour said.

One of the FluCide drug candidates, enabled the animals to survive up to 347.4±4.6 hrs (14.5 days) when administered orally.

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When given as an injectable, it allowed the animals to fight the lethal influenza infection for 376.8±7.5 hrs (15.7 days).

The alternative drug candidate, which has a different anti-viral ligand, resulted in the animals surviving for up to 301.3±5.2 hrs (12.6 days) when given orally, and for 349.0±3.9 hrs (14.5 days) when given as a tail-vein injection.

For comparison, untreated control animals died in 119.5±1 hrs (5 days), and oseltamivir (Tamiflu) treated animals died within just 181.7±4.6 hrs (7.6 days).

The survival data showed that oral and IV administration of FluCide was substantially superior to oseltamivir, with oral doses matching the effectiveness of the injectable form given at 0.3 times the oral dosage level. No adverse effects were reported.