New Frontiers Funding for COVID-19 research
August 2022 – A team of researchers is looking for a new way to treat mild COVID-19 symptoms using a nasal spray.
This new, non-invasive medical treatment could allow people to self-administer treatment at home, and reduce the need for hospitalization. Results of this study will set the stage for clinical trials.
Assistant Professor Anubhav Pratap-Singh (pictured right) is the lead investigator on this project funded by a New Frontiers in Research Fund under the stream Innovative Approaches to Research in the Pandemic Context. His team of researchers includes Anika Singh (co-PI) from BCIT, and co-applicants from UBC: Jian Feng (Forestry), Mattia Bacca (Applied Science), David Perrin (Chemistry), Ahidjo Bintou (Science), Don Sin and Andrew Thamboo (Medicine), and David Kitts (LFS).
The group aims to develop a non-invasive prophylactic therapy for SARS-CoV-2. Using the affinity between the cell receptor ACE2 and spike proteins of SARS-CoV-2, they are looking into the effectiveness of a nasal formulation as a prophylactic cure for the early symptoms of COVID. They hope to encapsulate and prolong the release of recombinant ACE2 (rhACE2) by increasing mucous membrane adhesion and the “active” residency time within the nose.
They received funding of $248,750 for the project titled, In-vitro and In-vivo trials on the aerosolized rhACE2 intranasal delivery approach for treating mild COVID-19 system patients. Additional collaborators involve researchers from Australia, Europe and the US.