A MESSAGE FROM OUR CEO ABOUT ITOLIZUMAB FOR COVID-19
We all have been deeply impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, both in ways predictable, such as maintaining physical distancing, and also in ways we never would have imagined. During these uncertain times, it is our industry’s privilege, responsibility and obligation to undertake safe and measured steps to produce therapeutic options for patients worldwide who are suffering from the COVID-19 pandemic.
At Equillium, while we remain focused on our core development programs with itolizumab, we also recognize the urgency of the need to develop drugs to treat COVID-19. Biocon Limited, our partner in India, recently shared encouraging topline results demonstrating that itolizumab significantly reduced mortality in patients hospitalized with COVID-19 in India. As a result, the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) has granted restricted emergency use of itolizumab for the treatment of cytokine release syndrome (CRS) in COVID-19 patients with moderate to severe acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) in India.
Based on the encouraging topline results of the Biocon study and subsequent DCGI approval to treat COVID-19 patients, we are planning to conduct a global randomized controlled clinical trial of itolizumab in COVID-19 patients for which we will file a U.S. investigational new drug application (IND). We are working with Biocon to review its full dataset with the goal to move swiftly in determining appropriate next steps to accelerate further development of itolizumab to treat moderate to severely ill COVID-19 patients in the U.S. and abroad in the face of this global crisis.
We will continue to provide updates on matters regarding COVID-19 that may impact our development strategy with itolizumab, and hope that our peers in the biotechnology sector are successful in their efforts to combat this serious pandemic.
In the meantime, from the Equillium family to yours, we wish you good health and wellbeing during these unprecedented times.
Our best regards,
Bruce Steel, Chief Executive Officer