AvenCell Presents Safety and Efficacy Data from Lead CD123-Directed Universal CAR T Cell Therapy Program at ASH 2022 Meeting
- Category: DNA RNA and Cells
- Published on Tuesday, 13 December 2022 09:40
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Oral presentation describing clinical proof of concept of AVC-101, a CD123-directed Universal CAR T in relapsed/refractory acute myeloid leukemia, demonstrating favorable side effect profile and rapid on/off control
Early efficacy signal with complete remissions and MRD negative conversions observed in heavily treated r/r AML patients
AVC-101 utilizes AvenCell’s autologous Universal CAR T Platform and is also being further investigated with allogeneic cells
CAMBRIDGE, MA, USA I December 12, 2022 I AvenCell Therapeutics, Inc. today announced updated safety and efficacy data from its lead CD-123-directed Universal CAR T Cell Candidate (“UniCAR”). These data, based on AvenCell’s Universal Targeting platform, were presented at the 64th American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting and Exposition in New Orleans, Louisiana.
The oral presentation (#979) included updated data from the first-in-human phase I dose escalation study of AVC-101 in patients with relapsed/refractory acute myeloid leukemia (r/r AML) designed to assess safety and tolerability and identify an MTD. Secondary and exploratory objectives include efficacy, biological activity, and PK.
As of October 13, 2022, of 16 patients treated with AVC-101, five patients (31%) achieved complete response with incomplete count recovery (CRi) or MRD negative conversion and the overall response rate was 56% (n=9). Of evaluable patients with minimal residual disease (MRD+; n=2), both converted to MRD negative status after the treatment.
“The AVC-101 [UniCAR CD123] program shows extremely promising results in the most challenging AML patients who have exhausted all options,” said Prof. Dr. med. Martin Wermke, head of Early Clinical Trial Unit at University Hospital Carl Gustav Carus in Dresden, Germany. “This study shows preliminary evidence of clinical efficacy including multiple CRs in the dose escalation stage, manageable toxicity, and proof of principle that the switchable technology can be turned on and off to manage toxicities thereby enabling targets too challenging for traditional CAR Ts. We are hopeful for additional trials of this platform to build on this encouraging data.”
The presentation reports results from 16 heavily pre-treated R/R AML patients with a median of six prior lines of therapies (min-max: 2-9 lines), with nine patients having received a prior allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Median age of patients was 64.5 (range 18-80), with four patients over the age of 70.
“We are excited to be at ASH for the first time as AvenCell and to showcase the Universal Targeting platform, which has the potential to address some of the most difficult efficacy and safety challenges with cell therapies seen to date,” said Andrew Schiermeier, Ph.D., chief executive officer, AvenCell Therapeutics. “The data presented by Dr. Gerhard Ehninger is indicative of the promise of the platform to treat a multitude of difficult cancer targets, where the ability to precisely and reliably control CAR T cell activity in vivo after administration is critical.”
AVC-101 is an investigational CD-123-directed cell therapy targeting acute myeloid leukemia, that utilizes AvenCell’s proprietary Universal Targeting platform, a regulatable CAR T cell technology that can turn CAR T cells “OFF” and “ON” by means of a separately infused Targeting Module. With AVC-101, AvenCell is aiming to create a solution to address the heterogeneity and aggressive nature of acute myeloid leukemia. CD123 is a target in acute myeloid leukemia, but its on-target off-tumor toxicity makes a conventional CD-123-directed CAR very challenging.
AvenCell’s proprietary Universal Targeting Platform is part of a new paradigm in cell therapy through one-time engraftment of Universal CAR T Cells, which can then be controlled in vivo with the separate administration of Targeting Modules that direct the Universal CAR T cells to cancer cells for activation and killing. The platform’s ability to control CAR T activity after infusion via repeatable, titratable, and switchable Targeting Module infusion provides extensive flexibility to address such issues as avoiding T cell exhaustion, antigen escape, and reacting rapidly to any potential adverse events.
AVC-101 is not approved for any indication in any geography and has not been demonstrated safe or effective for any use.
AvenCell derives its name from the French word avenir to reflect that we are the FUTURE of cell therapy. We are building a truly transformative cell therapy company that focuses difficult-to-treat cancers, with our lead programs focusing on acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and prostate cancer, and additional programs targeting other hematological malignancies and solid tumors. We formed AvenCell with the goal of 1) the creation of truly allogeneic cells that persist as long or longer than autologous therapies and 2) a universal and switchable construct that allows complete control and target redirection of T cells after they are infused into a patient. Integration of these two platforms allows for complete separation of the manufacturing of cells from ultimate patient and cancer target, thus providing significant scalability potential at orders of magnitude more efficient than current cell therapy approaches.
AvenCell Therapeutics, Inc. was launched in 2021 by Blackstone Life Sciences, Cellex Cell Professionals, and Intellia Therapeutics and incorporated the clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company GEMoaB GmbH. AvenCell is headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts with additional R&D and manufacturing operations in Dresden, Germany.
For more information, visit www.avencell.com.