Arca Biopharma secures patent rights for potential COVID-19 treatment

WESTMINSTER — Arca Biopharma Inc. (Nasdaq: ABIO) has secured patent rights from a German medical institution for a potential treatment for COVID-19.

The agreement with  the University Medical Center of Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Germany, grants Arca exclusive worldwide patent rights for the use of rNAPc2, a recombinant protein therapeutic being developed as a potential treatment for COVID-19 and other severe viral infections.  

The potential treatment is based on research and discoveries from the laboratory of university professor Dr. Wolfram Ruf, the scientific director and Alexander von Humboldt Professor at the Center for Thrombosis and Hemostasis of the University Medical Center Mainz.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration designated the investigation of rNAPc2 as a potential COVID-19  treatment as a Fast Track development program. 

“We are delighted to continue our collaboration with Dr. Ruf and the researchers at the University Medical Center Mainz to advance the development of rNAPc2 as a potential treatment for patients hospitalized with COVID-19,” Arca Biopharma president and CEO Michael Bristow said in a prepared statement. “Despite the availability of vaccines and with the emergence of multiple variants, patients around the world continue to experience severe cases of COVID-19 that require hospitalization.”

Bristow said rNAPc2’s combination of anticoagulant, anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties “give it the potential to be effective in addressing the impact of COVID-19 from multiple pathways.”

The agreement also grants Arca an option to acquire worldwide patent rights to discoveries related to the use of rNAPc2 as a potential therapeutic for auto-immune disorders such as systemic lupus erythematosus, as well as the option to acquire patent rights for discoveries relating to other therapeutic uses of rNAPc2.  

Arca has potential upfront and milestone obligations that could total approximately 1.6 million euros, in addition to royalty obligations if  rNAPc2 receives regulatory approval and is commercialized.