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Shionogi & Co Shares Rise on Covid-19 Pill Trial Results

The coronavirus viral load fell by as much as 80% after four days and three doses compared with those who took only a placebo

The Japanese pharmaceutical maker has global aspirations for its pill, saying last week it would launch a phase 3 trial worldwide with US government support. Photo: Shionogi & Co.


Shares in Japanese drugmaker Shionogi & Co rose for a second day on Wednesday following the announcement that its antiviral pill for Covid-19 had been found to be effective.

The shares rose as much as 4% – following a 10% gain on Tuesday on the news that the pill reduced the levels of the virus in patients who tested positive for Covid-19.

The viral load fell by as much as 80% after four days and three doses compared with those who took a placebo. Patients who took a lower dose of the drug saw virus levels fall by 63% compared with the placebo.

The rally has come after a difficult January for Shionogi shares, which lost nearly 20% during the month.

“The new data shows that the drug, S-217622, reduces the viral load in patients’ blood at roughly the same rate as Pfizer‘s Paxlovid,” Stephen Barker, equity analyst at Jefferies in Tokyo, said.

“Shionogi’s third-quarter financial results were weaker than expected, but the good news on S-217622 is likely to outweigh those concerns,” he added.


  • George Russell




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George Russell

George Russell is a freelance writer and editor based in Hong Kong who has lived in Asia since 1996. His work has been published in the Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, New York Post, Variety, Forbes and the South China Morning Post.


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