Sarepta announces positive results in Marburg virus therapeutic study

Sarepta Therapeutics, Inc., a Cambridge, Massachusetts-based developer of RNA-based therapeutics, announced positive results on Monday from a non-human primate study of the company's lead drug candidate for treating Marburg virus infection.

The data demonstrated that the the intramuscular administration of AVI-7288 led to survival rates in up to 100 percent of treated subjects. The results were similar to previous studies that evaluated the drug using intravenous injections.

"These data reinforce the strong efficacy of AVI-7288, while showing that the drug can be delivered via a convenient intramuscular injection," Chris Garabedian, president and CEO of Sarepta Therapeutics, said. "This alternative delivery method to the intravenous route has the potential to greatly enhance the practical utility of AVI-7288 in a mass casualty situation and also serves as a model for delivery of our rapidly adaptable platform for other therapeutic applications."

Sarepta is developing AVI-7288 under a contract managed by the Joint Project Manager Transformational Medical Technologies Project Management Office. The JPM-TMT is a component of the U.S. Department of Defense's Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical and Biological Defense. The JPM-TMT has the goal of protecting soldiers from emerging infectious diseases and unknown biological threats.

Marburg hemorrhagic fever is a severe and extremely lethal disease that currently has no effective treatment. The Marburg virus is classified as a Category A bioterrorism agent by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.