A Breakthrough in Covid-19 Drug Makes 3 UK Professors Millionaires

Three professors in Department of Medicine at University of Southampton have become millionaires by showing “great success” in Covid-19 treatment.

Tests have shown that 69 percent of patients are less likely to become seriously ill after taking the drug, reports the Guardian.

The three professors are Ratko Djukanovic, Stephen Holgate and Donna Davies.

About two decades ago, they discovered a drug called interferon beta to treat asthma and chronic lung disease. It helps in the treatment of common cold fever.

They work on how to improve patients’ defenses against viral infections by increasing the presence of proteins in transplants.

Together, the three created a company called Synairgen to use their findings in medicine. Although the company’s shares were released in 2004, their share price fell after an agreement.

However, the drug, discovered by the professors as a potential treatment for respiratory distress during the coronavirus epidemic, appears to be their “game changer.”

Richard Marsden, CEO of Synairgen, said the company has conducted large experiments on the use of interferon beta drugs to treat people with chronic bronchitis or emphysema. However, in January, after coronavirus outbreak, we realized that the drug could play an important role in preventing the virus.

So, we decided on a clinical trial in February and March after the virus arrived in UK, and we succeeded. Preliminary tests showed they are two to three times more likely to recover from use of interferon beta drug SNG001.

The study, conducted among 101 people, found that 79 per cent had a reduction in respiratory illnesses for serious illnesses.

As of Friday, the price of Synairgen in the stock market has risen by more than 3,000 percent to 204 points. As a result, the company managers’ share price has risen by 2.8 percent to 6 million euros.

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