A big field study of ResApp’s smart cough technology in developing nations has been put on hold in response to disappointing trial results last month.

ResApp (ASX:RAP) said issues identified in a previous study prompted Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) to drop out of the trial.

“After reviewing the issues identified by ResApp in its SMARTCOUGH-C study, and the high cost of keeping the project open, MSF will not proceed with its planned field evaluation of ResAppDx at this point in time.”

Shares in the digital health company fell almost 80 per cent on news of the company’s poor trial results earlier this year and today were trading at 8c.

But ResApp boss Tony Keating reaffirmed the results had nothing to do with the effectiveness of the technology and everything to do with the execution of the study itself.

“We found issues with things like background noise and other people’s coughs or patients being treated before the recording was taken,” he said.

“We took a bit hit with the US clinical study but the more we look at it the more we see executional issues – it is not indicative of how effective the technology is.”

The company said it is now focussed on the restart of the trial in the US winter, which will include enhanced procedures and would continue its relationship with MSF.

“They remain strong believers in the technology and its ability to make a difference in the developing world,” Mr Keating said.

The company made a $10 million loss last year, with $8.5 million in the bank at the end of the year.