BUSINESS

Tekmira abandons Ebola drug development, changing focus to hepatitis B cure

07/20/2015 10:06 EDT | Updated 07/20/2016 05:59 EDT
TORONTO - One month after clinical trials for a once-promising Ebola drug were suspended, the company behind the treatment has suspended all research on the compound.

Tekmira Pharmaceuticals says it has stopped all work on its TKM-Ebola drug and is re-evaluating the contract it signed with the U.S. Department of Defense to develop it.

In a news release, Tekmira says it's changing its name to Arbutus Biopharma Corp. to reflect its new focus on developing a cure for chronic hepatitis B.

Clinical trials for the TKM-Ebola drug in Sierra Leone were suspended in June after an interim assessment of the project concluded the drug wasn't showing beneficial results.

The statement Monday offered no comment on the future of a sister drug the company was developing that was designed to fight Marburg fever, which is similar to Ebola.