Sarepta Therapeutics Announces Research Agreement with U.S. Department of Defense to Evaluate Multiple Constructs From its Proprietary RNA Platform as Treatments for COVID-19

CAMBRIDGE, MA, USA I April 28, 2020 I Sarepta Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:SRPT), the leader in precision genetic medicine for rare diseases, today announced that the Company and the United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID), the Department of Defense’s lead laboratory for medical biological defense research, have entered into a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA). The purpose of the CRADA is to jointly identify antisense oligonucleotides using Sarepta’s proprietary phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligomer (PMO) platform with activity against SARS-CoV-2 for the potential treatment of COVID-19.  

Previously published clinical and preclinical studies of Sarepta’s RNA technology have found evidence of antiviral activity of Sarepta’s PMO technology in coronaviruses and other viruses.i,ii,iii, iv Pursuant to the CRADA, Sarepta will design, synthesize, manufacture and provide to USAMRIID multiple peptide-conjugated PMO (PPMO) constructs based on genetic sequencing of SARS-CoV-2 for COVID-19. USAMRIID will evaluate the constructs on characterized wild-type SARS-CoV-2 viruses for their potential to inhibit viral infection. Based on the results, Sarepta and USAMRIID will consider collaborative funding proposals to advance the development of treatments for COVID-19.  

“We should all be proud and grateful that in collaboration with health agencies, many innovative companies across the biopharmaceutical ecosystem have mobilized to fight and solve this COVID-19 pandemic, investing significant resources to rapidly build diagnostics, find treatments, and develop effective vaccines,” said Doug Ingram, Sarepta’s President and Chief Executive Officer.  “While Sarepta’s mission to rapidly advance treatments for rare and often fatal genetic disease is focused, unwavering and undeterred, we cannot ignore the impact of this global pandemic on human health, and have answered the call to contribute our scientific expertise and provide our technology in the race to develop an effective treatment for COVID-19. Indeed, we have already built and manufactured therapeutic PPMO constructs and are providing them now to USAMRIID for testing and evaluation.”

About the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases
For over 50 years, USAMRIID has provided leading edge medical capabilities to deter and defend against current and emerging biological threat agents. The Institute is the only laboratory in the Department of Defense equipped to safely study highly hazardous viruses requiring maximum containment at Biosafety Level 4. Research conducted at USAMRIID leads to medical solutions—vaccines, drugs, diagnostics, and training programs—that benefit both military personnel and civilians. Established in 1969, the Institute plays a key role as the lead military medical research laboratory for the Defense Threat Reduction Agency’s Joint Science and Technology Office for Chemical and Biological Defense. USAMRIID is a subordinate laboratory of the U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Command. For more information, visit

About Sarepta Therapeutics
At Sarepta, we are leading a revolution in precision genetic medicine and every day is an opportunity to change the lives of people living with rare disease. The Company has built an impressive position in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) and in gene therapies for limb-girdle muscular dystrophies (LGMDs), mucopolysaccharidosis type IIIA, Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT), and other CNS-related disorders, with more than 40 programs in various stages of development. The Company’s programs and research focus span several therapeutic modalities, including RNA, gene therapy and gene editing. For more information, please visit or follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook.

SOURCE: Sarepta Therapeutics

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