Unum Therapeutics Announces Strategic Focus on Developing Best-in-Class Cellular Therapies for Solid Tumor Cancers
- Solid tumor cancers represent the greatest unmet medical need for targeted cell therapies; Unum’s goals are to more selectively target solid tumors with its ACTR platform candidates and improve T cell functionality in the solid tumor microenvironment with its BOXR platform candidates -
- Priorities moving forward include completing its ongoing Phase 1 trial with ACTR707 in HER2+ cancers, filing an IND for BOXR1030, and expanding its BOXR platform for further pipeline expansion -
- Company to deemphasize hematologic programs with plans for limited dose-escalation in Phase 1 non-Hodgkin lymphoma trial and suspension of Phase 1 multiple myeloma trial -
- Conference call scheduled for today at
“We are uniquely positioned to address the challenge of treating solid tumor cancers, and now is the time to focus our efforts, having recently validated our ACTR technology in the hematologic setting and with preclinical data emerging from BOXR1030, the first product candidate from our BOXR platform. Our ACTR technology enables selective T cell targeting for on-tumor attack, while our BOXR platform makes it possible to overcome solid tumor immunosuppression, the fundamental challenge that has limited the effectiveness of cell therapies,” said Chuck Wilson Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of
ACTR707 was engineered for properties that optimize its function in solid tumors including increased proliferation, cytokine secretion, and persistence. With Unum’s focus on developing therapies for solid tumors, the company will de-prioritize investment in its hematologic programs. Testing through the first four dose levels in the ongoing ATTCK-20-03 Phase 1 trial in non-Hodgkin lymphoma has now established proof-of-concept for ACTR707. Given favorable tolerability to date at relatively low doses,
Solid Tumor Program Highlights
- Phase 1 ATTCK-34-01 Trial: ACTR707 combined with trastuzumab to treat advanced HER2+ solid tumor cancers. Five clinical sites are now activated to support the Phase 1 trial that is currently enrolling patients.
Unumexpects to report preliminary safety data from patients treated in the first dose cohort of the trial by the end of this year and to report safety and clinical response data from multiple dose cohorts in 2020.
- BOXR1030: Incorporating the GOT2 transgene and targeting GPC3+ solid tumor cancers. Unum’s first product candidate selected from its Bolt-On Chimeric Receptor (BOXR) platform, BOXR1030, continues to progress towards first-in-human clinical trials. BOXR1030 expresses a glypican-3 (GPC3) targeted chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) and leverages the “bolt-on” transgene glutamic-oxaloacetic transaminase 2 (GOT2) to improve T cell function in the solid tumor microenvironment by enhancing T cell metabolism. Preclinical studies have characterized the mechanism of action of BOXR1030’s bolt-on transgene with further details to be presented at the upcoming
Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer( SITC) conference during November 6-10, 2019. Based on recent progress, Unumnow plans to file an investigational new drug (IND) application for BOXR1030 in late 2020, enabling subsequent clinical testing in GPC3+ cancers.
- BOXR Platform Expansion:
Unum'sBOXR platform was established over two years ago with the aim of discovering novel transgenes that can be co-expressed with chimeric-targeting receptors to improve the function of T cells in the solid tumor microenvironment. As part of its strategic shift to target solid tumors, Unumwill be scaling up its BOXR platform capabilities with the objectives of: (1) expanding the scope of biological mechanisms and transgenes in its proprietary BOXR library, (2) enabling BOXR bolt-on applications for a broad range of immune cell therapies, including both autologous and allogeneic approaches, and (3) advancing new BOXR product candidates into the clinic.
Hematologic Program Highlights
- Phase 1 ATTCK-20-03 trial: ACTR707 combined with rituximab for relapsed/refractory non-Hodgkin lymphoma. As a preliminary update provided today for the six patients treated in Cohort 4 (80M ACTR707+ T cells), complete response was achieved at the first response assessment in two of six patients as of the
October 2019analysis, yielding a complete response rate of 40% (eight of 20 patients) in Cohorts 1 through 4. Of the eight complete responders, four remained in complete response at six months of follow-up, two remain in complete response but have not yet reached the six-month timepoint for evaluation, and two progressed before the six-month timepoint. In Cohorts 1 through 4, ACTR707 was well-tolerated in combination with rituximab. No DLTs, no adverse events of CRS, and no severe neurological adverse events including neurotoxicity have been reported as of the October 2019cutoff. Further results will be presented at the American Society for Hematology(ASH) Annual Meeting during December 7-10, 2019. Unumplans to enroll up to two additional cohorts (three to four patients per cohort) in the trial, escalating the maximum dose up to 180M ACTR707+ T cells. With patient screening and planned dosing underway, Unumplans to report preliminary results from this dose escalation during 2020. The ability to differentiate on both efficacy and safety relative to currently available therapies and those in development from these additional cohorts will drive a decision during 2020 whether to advance the program into an expanded dose cohort and potential pivotal studies.
- Phase 1 ATTCK-17-01 trial: ACTR087 combined with SEA-BCMA for relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma. Two additional cohorts of patients have been treated in the Phase 1 trial in 2019, escalating doses of the SEA-BCMA antibody to 2.0 mg/kg and of the ACTR087+ T cells to 50M.
Unumand Seattle Geneticshave suspended further dose-escalation of the trial and are reviewing the next steps with this program.
Investor Call and Webcast Information
Forward looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements including, without limitation, statements regarding our future expectations, plans and prospects, including projections regarding future revenues and financial performance, our long-term growth, enrollment and results for our preclinical and clinical activities, the development of our product candidates, including the ACTR product candidates and the BOXR platform and product candidates, our plans for the ATTCK-17-01 Phase 1 trial, and the anticipated timing and success of any of our preclinical studies, clinical trials and regulatory filings, as well as other statements containing the words "anticipate," "believe," "continue," "could," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "may," "might," "plan," "potential," "predict," "project," "should," "target," "will," or "would" and similar expressions, constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the safe harbor provisions of The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, as amended. We may not actually achieve the forecasts disclosed in our forward-looking statements, and you should not place undue reliance on our forward-looking statements. Actual results could differ materially from the projections disclosed in the forward-looking statements we make as a result of a variety of risks and uncertainties, including risks related to the accuracy of our estimates regarding expenses, future revenues, capital requirements, and the need for additional financing, the success, cost and timing of our product development activities and clinical trials, our ability to obtain and maintain regulatory approval for our product candidates, and the other risks and uncertainties described in the "Risk Factors" sections of our public filings with the
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Source: Unum Therapeutics Inc.