Imugene and NeoImmuneTech Sign Pact To Improve Cancer Treatments

India Pharma Outlook Team | Wednesday, 13 December 2023

 India Pharma Outlook Team

A strategic collaboration was announced by clinical-stage T-cell-focused biopharmaceutical company NeoImmuneTech, Inc. (NIT) and clinical-stage immuno-oncology company Imugene Ltd (Imugene) to assess the potential of Imugene's allogeneic CAR T, azer-cel, in combination with NIT's proprietary immune T cell amplifier, “Fc-fused recombinant human interleukin-7,” or NT-I7, for the treatment of cancer.

Azer-cel is an allogeneic CD19 CAR T cell therapy program with extensive clinical data and a potentially fast-to-market development strategy. Azer-cel has demonstrated clinically meaningful activity with an acceptable safety profile in blood cancers such as lymphoma and leukaemia, as per pharmabiz. 

The only long-acting human IL-7 cytokine1 in clinical development is NT-I7 (efineptakin alfa). NT-I7 plays an important role in T cell formation and survival, increasing cancer-fighting T cell numbers, health, and functioning to increase immune function and perhaps provide patients with improved cancer-fighting advantages.  When compared to naturally occurring IL-7, NT-I7 has better stability, activity, and safety profiles on patient dosage, making it an attractive combination partner for cell therapy medications like azer-cel.

“We are delighted to be working with NIT on the potential to enhance azer-cel activity as part of this research collaboration,” said Leslie Chong, managing director & chief executive officer of Imugene.

Dr. Se Hwan Yang, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer of NeoImmuneTech said: “NT-I7 has already shown encouraging results in multiple indications in immuno-oncology and infectious diseases, both as a monotherapy or in combination. The research collaboration with Imugene, an industry leader in allogeneic cell therapy, could greatly expand the potential of our asset and accelerate its path to commercialization, as we did in acute radiation syndrome.”

The strategic collaboration is effective immediately and will last for two years, as long as relevant research activities are carried out in accordance with the research plan. Such research will be carried out solely in the United States.

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