Vir Biotechnology spikes 36% after it says its COVID-19 treatment reduced hospitalizations and deaths in high-risk patients

Spike Protein coronavirus
3D print of a SARS-CoV-2 also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus that causes COVID-19. The virus surface (blue) is covered with spike proteins (red) that enable the virus to enter and infect human cells. NIH/Getty Images

Shares of Vir Biotechnology spiked 36% on Thursday after the company announced that its COVID-19 antibody treatment significantly reduced hospitalizations and deaths for high-risk patients during a clinical trial.

The San Francisco-based drugmaker said it will seek emergency use authorization for the drug in the US and in other countries after the ongoing trial is completed upon the recommendation of an Independent Data Monitoring Committee.

GlaxoSmithKline was also a developer of the drug, although shares declined early Thursday. The company invested $US250 ($321) million in Vir in April 2020 to develop potential antibody treatments to combat the virus.

The monoclonal antibody drug, VIR-7831, reduced hospitalizations and deaths by as much as 85% compared to a placebo.

The committee recommendation was based on an interim analysis gathered from 583 patients enrolled in the trial.