Atea Pharmaceuticals Tumbles After Covid-19 Treatment Tanks

Atea Pharmaceuticals Tumbles After Covid-19 Treatment Tanks

Atea Pharmaceuticals’ (NASDAQ: AVIR) Covid-19 treatment, developed in collaboration with Roche, did not meet the necessary requirement to reduce the amount of Covid-19 in non-hospitalized patients with mild to moderate disease. The company’s shares decreased 70.9% to USD11.78 during premarket trading.

The pharmaceutical company is developing an oral drug, called AT-527, along with Roche as both companies have teamed up to execute several studies for the drug meant to treat Covid-19. The trial ultimately pushed the company’s progress behind that of Merck & Co Inc, which has also developed an experimental pill to treat Covid-19.

Atea is now contemplating changing its target patient community in its late-stage trial, ultimately making it more similar to Merck’s trial run. Upon the changes, the company highlighted that it would not have any results from the trial until the second half of 2022, a six-month delay.

The company’s treatment did not demonstrate a concise reduction in SARS-CoV-2 viral load within the group of patients, in comparison to the placebo. Nevertheless, the viral load decreased in high-risk patients that had underlying conditions.

“Having a healthier and partially vaccinated patient population with largely mild disease has important implications in determining the viral kinetics and may have made it more difficult to evaluate viral efficacy,” Atea Chief Development Officer Janet Hammond said in a conference call.

“It’s really the high-risk patients where you’re going to have the greatest likelihood of seeing an impact clinically,” Hammond said.

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