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  • Biotechnology company BriaCell Therapeutics (TSXV:BCT) has filed a US patent application for a potential COVID-19 treatment
  • The patent application is based on molecular analyses of the company’s lead anti-tumour candidate  
  • BriaCell designed its immunotherapies to stimulate the immune system, allowing it to recognise and destroy tumours
  • The company hopes that it can reapply this method to treating infectious diseases like COVID-19
  • BriaCell’s share price has shot up 37.10 per cent, and is currently trading for C$12.75 per share

Biotechnology company BriaCell Therapeutics (TSXV:BCT) has filed a US patent application for a potential COVID-19 treatment method.

The company announced that it has filed a provisional patent application with the US Patent and Trademark Office. The application outlines certain features which might expand the applications of BriaCell’s genetically engineered whole-cell immunotherapies. 

BriaCell’s patent application, is titled “Inducing Immune Responses by Transforming Cancer Cells into Antigen-Presenting Cells.” The company made the application after analysing the molecules of its lead anti-tumour product candidate. 

BriaCell designed its whole-cell immunotherapies to stimulate the immune system, allowing it to recognise and destroy tumours. They do this by acting as antigen-presenting cells, the cells which usually trigger immune responses. The immunotherapies, acting as antigen-presenting cells, turn on the immune cells which recognise cancer cells. 

BriaCell scientists hope that they can reapply this method to treating infectious diseases, including SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19. The company’s patent application proposes additional cellular therapies which could activate immune cells to recognise SARS-CoV-2 antigens. 

Specifically, the patent application is seeking protection for new whole-cell therapeutics and methods, amongst others. 

While this announcement may seem like a ray of hope during the unprecedented pandemic, it is still early days. 

The company was quick to point out that COVID-19 vaccine development is still in initial research and development stages. As such, BriaCell is not expressing or implying that it can prevent or eliminate the COVID-19 virus at this time.

BriaCell’s share price has shot up 37.10 per cent, and is trading for $12.75 per share, as of 9:35am EST.

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