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June 18, 2021, 8:51 a.m. EDT

Edesa Biotech shares jump 14% premarket after early review of COVID treatment finds it should continue trial

Edesa Biotech Inc. shares (NAS:EDSA) jumped 14% premarket on Friday, after the Canadian biotech, which is listed on Nasdaq, said an interim review of its one-dose COVID-19 treatment candidate found it should continue the study as planned. Toronto-based Edesa said an independent data and safety monitoring board made that determination after an initial review of the first patients enrolled in its Phase 2/3 study evaluating the drug candidate as a treatment for hospitalized patients. "While it is not possible yet to draw conclusions, we are encouraged by the monitoring board's findings as well as the robust enrollment we have achieved to date," Edesa said in a statement. The company has filed a trial amendment with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to streamline the U.S. protocol and align it with other jurisdictions. More than 370 patients are enrolled in the trial. The drug, called EB05, is a monoclonal antibody that Edesa believes can treat acute respiratory distress syndrome, which is one of the main causes of death from COVID. Edesa shares have gained 34% in the year to date, while the SPDR S&P Biotech ETF (PSE:XBI) has fallen 4% and the S&P 500 (S&P:SPX) has gained 12.4%.

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