01 April 2021
Pictured: Starpharma's COVID-19 antiviral nasal spray VIRALEZE™.
With support from MTPConnect’s BTB program, Melbourne-based biotech Starpharma has this week launched its antiviral nasal spray VIRALEZE™ into the UK via a large national pharmacy chain to support COVID-19 efforts.
The 1,400-strong pharmacy chain across the UK has made the VIRALEZE™ spray available online and will soon be instore in April 2021. VIRALEZE™ will also be available through a further 14,000 independent pharmacies in the UK serviced by McKesson’s AAH wholesale division.
The Sydney Morning Herald recently reported that Starpharma is the first ASX-listed company to bring a COVID-19 preventative product to the global retail market.
Dr Jackie Fairley, CEO of Starpharma commented: “We are excited that VIRALEZE™ will be available … in the second largest pharmacy chain in the UK. The LloydsPharmacy/McKesson team shares Starpharma’s enthusiasm and commitment to bring VIRALEZE™ antiviral nasal spray to UK consumers as they emerge from their latest lockdown.
“VIRALEZE™ was developed, manufactured and registered by Starpharma, and we are delighted to see it launched in the UK market.”
The antiviral active (SPL7013) in VIRALEZE™ irreversibly blocks coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 ‘spike’ proteins from binding to human airway cells, an interaction which is required for infection. VIRALEZE™ has multiple unique advantages, including its virucidal action, its rapid onset (inactivates >99.9% SARS-CoV-2 within one minute) and its ability to inactivate virus either before or after exposure, and provides a physical barrier to respiratory viruses in the nasal cavity.
On our podcast series recently, Starpharma CEO Dr Jackie Fairley discussed the impact of receiving BTB funding and support from BTB partner UniQuest to fast track development and commercialisation of the product ready to launch.
Starpharma also plans to roll the product out across Europe, and to seek registration for the product in other regions, including Australia.
Congratulations to the team at Starpharma on reaching this significant milestone.
Starpharma (ASX: SPL) is a leading company in dendrimer-based drug delivery, based in Abbotsford, Victoria with 45 employees.