Medicenna Presents Promising Preclinical Data on IL-2 and IL-13 Superkines at the EORTC-NCI-AACR Annual Meeting

- Monotherapy and combination studies continue to demonstrate best-in-class potential of MDNA11

-- Bispecific IL-2/IL-13 Superkine demonstrates the potential to treat immunologically “cold” tumors

TORONTO, Canada and HOUSTON, TX, USA I October 26, 2020 I Medicenna Therapeutics Corp. ("Medicenna" or "the Company") (NASDAQ: MDNA, TSX: MDNA), a clinical stage immuno-oncology company, today announced a poster presentation of preclinical data on the Company’s IL-2 and IL-13 Superkine platform programs at the 32nd EORTC-NCI-AACR ("ENA") Symposium on Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics.

“There is a critical unmet need for new treatment options for cancers with immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment (TME), which are often resistant to currently used therapies including immune checkpoint inhibitors,” said Fahar Merchant, PhD, President and CEO of Medicenna. “Data presented at ENA show that our bispecific IL-2/IL-13 Superkine has the potential to address this need by selectively activating anti-tumor CD8+ T cells without Treg stimulation while simultaneously suppressing the dual IL-13 and IL-4 TME signaling pathways that block cancer fighting T cells. Taken together with data from the poster demonstrating MDNA11’s ability to induce the expansion of a multitude of anti-cancer immune cells without increasing toxicity, these results highlight the versatility of our Superkine platform as a tool for the development of novel cytokine-based immunotherapies.”

The poster and corresponding abstract feature data on MDNA11, a long-acting IL-2 Superkine that preferentially binds the IL-2 beta receptor (IL-2Rβ) on immune cells, as well as data related to a long acting bispecific IL-2/IL-13 Superkine that is designed to simultaneously activate cancer killing immune cells while reversing anti-inflammatory TME. These results demonstrate the potent therapeutic efficacy of MDNA11 monotherapy in multiple tumor models, further supporting the molecule’s best-in-class potential. Medicenna’s bispecific IL-2/IL-13 Superkines are novel and demonstrate the potential of the platform to address a critical unmet need by effectively targeting immunologically “cold” tumors that are often resistant to immunotherapeutic agents. In summary, these data demonstrate the best-in-class potential of MDNA11 as well as the ability of Medicenna’s Superkine platform to efficiently transform natural interleukins into innovative dual-acting cytokines for immuno-oncology indications.

The poster, titled “Emergence of Novel Long-acting Mono- and Bi-specific IL-2/IL-13 Superkines as Potent Immune Modulators”, will be presented by Dr. To during the New Therapies in Immuno Oncology session of the ENA meeting. Highlights from the poster and corresponding abstract include:

  • Data show that compared to native IL-2, MDNA11 exhibits enhanced potency towards anti-tumor CD8+ T and natural killer (NK) cells, and diminished activity toward pro-tumor Treg cells
  • MDNA11 inhibited B16F10 tumor growth and improved survival as a monotherapy and in combination with a tumor-antigen targeting antibody by inducing a durable increase in tumor infiltrating lymphocytes
  • Treatment with MDNA11 alone or in combination with an immune checkpoint inhibitor resulted in long-term tumor regression and a strong memory response in a preclinical colon cancer model
  • Repeat dosing of non-human primates with MDNA11 did not trigger cytokine storm, anti-drug antibody response nor eosinophilia (associated with vascular leak syndrome)
  • Data show that Medicenna’s bispecific IL-2/IL13 Superkine induced anti-tumor Th1 immune responses and inhibited pro-tumor IL-4/IL-13 signaling

Medicenna continues to advance its MDNA11 and IL-2/IL-13 Superkine programs. The Company expects to declare a lead candidate for its bispecific Superkine program in 2021 and initiate a Phase 1 clinical trial with MDNA11 in mid-2021.

A copy of the ENA electronic poster will be posted to the “Events and Presentations” page of Medicenna’s website.  

About Medicenna
Medicenna is a clinical stage immunotherapy company focused on the development of novel, highly selective versions of IL-2, IL-4 and IL-13 Superkines and first in class Empowered Superkines for the treatment of a broad range of cancers. Medicenna's long-acting IL2 Superkine asset, MDNA11, is a next-generation IL-2 with superior CD122 binding without CD25 affinity and therefore preferentially stimulating cancer killing effector T cells and NK cells when compared to competing IL-2 programs. It is anticipated that MDNA11 will be ready for the clinic in 2021. Medicenna's lead IL4 Empowered Superkine, MDNA55, has completed a Phase 2b clinical trial for rGBM, the most common and uniformly fatal form of brain cancer. MDNA55 has been studied in five clinical trials involving 132 subjects, including 112 adults with rGBM. MDNA55 has obtained Fast-Track and Orphan Drug status from the FDA and FDA/EMA, respectively. For more information, please visit

SOURCE: Medicenna

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