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CoViRCure– An Immunoprotective Oral Supplement for Reducing COVID-19 Post-Hyperimmunity Period Immune Suppression

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Army
Contract: W911NF-21-P-0038
Agency Tracking Number: A20B-T028-0171
Amount: $166,442.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: A20B-T028
Solicitation Number: 20.B
Solicitation Year: 2020
Award Year: 2021
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2020-12-09
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2021-07-08
Small Business Information
MURRIETA, CA 92562-7022
United States
DUNS: 123247618
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: Yes
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: Yes
Principal Investigator
 Aynun Begum
 (818) 357-3018
Business Contact
 Aynun Begum
Phone: (818) 357-3018
Research Institution
 University of California, Davis
 Ameer Taha
One Shields Avenue
Davis, CA 95616
United States

 (530) 752-7096
 Nonprofit College or University

COVID-19, a novel coronavirus disease, induces a hyperimmune response (cytokine storm) upon infection that often leads to hyperinflammation and immunosuppression. During the immunosuppression, the body is susceptible to other infections, which potentially increase mortality rates. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports that the military’s cumulative hospitalization rate (2%) is 50 times higher than the non-military. After COVID-19 hospitalization or recovery, soldiers or civilians can suffer secondary infections that can be prevented by dietary oral supplements or drugs. An oral dietary supplement, having immunomodulatory action against cytokine storm as well as reducing immunosuppression after COVID-19 infection, is a novel treatment approach. In this context, the sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) receptor (S1PR) pathway can be modulated by dietary compounds like vitamin D and beneficial fatty acids to improve overall immunity post-viral infection. Also, this supplement must have all the essential, measurable components found in the blood of prolonged or short recovery COVID-19 patients. The supplement must have a measurably positive outcome on reducing immunosuppression and improving the recovery rate from COVID-19. NGL will incorporate these criteria in developing a safe, stable, and readily available acylated chitosan encapsulated vitamin D, beneficial polyunsaturated fatty acids (C20:4n6, C:225n3, C:226n3) and odd chain fatty acids (C15:0, C17:0), and antioxidants (α-tocopherol and β-carotene) incorporated nanoparticle (NP) oral supplement “CoViRCureTM” to prevent the COVID-19 post-hyper immunity period of immunosuppression. In Phase I, we will collect COVID-19 serum samples to determine the target compounds for CoViRCure. During infection, fatty acid metabolism changes due to fighting off inflammation, oxidation, or injury. Metabolic changes include the increased production of oxylipins (oxl) and ceramide (Crm) species, along with decreased levels of beneficial sphingolipids (SLs). We will measure the proposed dietary compounds along with oxl, CRm, and SLs in COVID-19 serum. Collectively, these lipid markers will enable us to select the active target compounds, which modulate the S1PR pathway to restore normal homeostasis in the body after injury or infection. NGL will focus on selecting the most promising markers for metabolic changes in the proposed dietary compounds found in COVID-19 patient’s serum. Furthermore, NGL will determine the target compounds for the fabrication of CoViRCure to prevent COVID-19 hyper immunity and immunosuppression in the military and civilian populations.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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