The World Health Organisation (WHO) has selected MGC Pharma (ASX:MGC) for its COVID-19 taskforce.

The news impressed investors, which pushed shares up as much as 30 per cent on Thursday to an intra-day high of 2.6c.


As the COVID-19 pandemic worsens, the WHO is recruiting pharmaceutical companies globally to conduct clinical trials on the virus and European-based bio-pharma company MGC Pharma announced today it was one of them.

MGC will participate in a trial that is currently underway in Israel after recently receiving ethics approval from Nazareth Hospital EMMS.

The trial will evaluate the safety and efficacy of certain ingredients on patients diagnosed with COVID-19.

MGC also announced today the trial had been expanded to include the recruitment of patients to the Mahatma Gandhi Mission’s Medical College & Hospital in India, where ethics approval had also been received.

With the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in India, WHO is enlisting MGC Pharma’s help to use the updates and data from this trial to enable decision makers to access the best current evidence on comparative effects of the interventions studied in the COVID-19 trials.


Breaking into India

Speaking with Stockhead, Roby Zomer, co-founder and managing director of MGC Pharma said not only did this put the company in a position to align with the world’s leading health research organisation, it also presented an opportunity to potentially facilitate the future sale of MGC products into India, and other Asian countries with mutual recognition.

“India’s COVID-19 cases are increasing daily, so in addition to our current Israel trial where the increment of cases is also large, this has presented an opportunity for us to expand,” Zomer said.

“These wider statistical results obtained through the trial in India will also be required as part of the marketing authorisation application for our products, and we look forward to updating the market as the trial commences in India.”