image credit: Vecteezy

Atea and Roche’s COVID-19 antiviral flunks phase 2, prompting switch that will delay pivotal data

October 19, 2021

Atea Pharmaceuticals and Roche have suffered a big blow to their bid to bring an oral antiviral for COVID-19 to market. A phase 2 trial of the candidate missed its primary endpoint, prompting Atea and Roche to consider changes that will delay data from a pivotal study by around one year.

Merck and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics recently raised hopes that oral antivirals may be effective in at least some COVID-19 patients by presenting top-line data on molnupiravir. The Atea phase 2, which had important design differences to the molnupiravir study, suggests the path to the availability of several oral antivirals will be bumpy.

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