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Catalist-listed SeD claims its two compounds can block Covid-19 infection

CATALIST-LISTED Singapore eDevelopment (SeD) on Tuesday said that its US subsidiary, Impact BioMedical, has tested two compounds that can successfully inhibit the infection by the Covid-19 virus.

Results from Impact BioMedical's recent molecular-docking studies indicate that compounds 'Linebacker' and 'Equivir' are able to block three integral viral mechanisms for Sars-CoV-2 (the virus behind Covid-19) replication and infection, said SeD. 

The three mechanisms are: the viral spike interaction point, helicase and protease. 

Equivir and Linebacker are currently undergoing accelerated testing against Sars-CoV-2, and data is expected to confirm their efficacy based on previous work against other coronaviruses such as Sars (severe acute respiratory syndrome) and Mers (Middle East respiratory coronavirus), said SeD.

This latest research is part of a programme conducted by Impact BioMedical's scientific research partner, GRDG Sciences. 

Recent studies have found that Angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) could be the host receptor for Sars-Cov-2. However, it is "problematic" to inhibit ACE2 as it is required to regulate the cardiovascular system, said SeD. 

Daryl Thompson, director of scientific initiatives at GRDG, added: "ACE2 is essential for maintaining the health of the pulmonary system and may not be a straightforward target for inhibition. Instead, we are utilising Linebacker and Equivir therapeutics as molecular probes to identify methods to make the ACE2 resistant and less accessible to coronavirus infection." 

Chan Heng Fai, SeD executive chairman and executive director, noted that the group is looking to provide "meaningful solutions to the current pandemic soonest". 

That being said, shareholders and potential investors of SeD should note that there is "no certainty or assurance", as at Tuesday, that Equivir will be licensed or close to monetisation, said the group. 

Shares of SeD fell 0.1 Singapore cent - or 3.5 per cent - to close trading at 2.8 cents on Tuesday.