Basilea Announces Start of Phase 2a Study with Oncology Drug Candidate BAL101553

“Basilea Pharmaceutica Ltd. (SIX: BSLN) reports today that it initiated a phase 2a study with its investigational oncology drug BAL101553. The study is designed to further characterize safety and tolerability, and to obtain efficacy data in adult patients with advanced or recurrent solid tumors who have failed standard therapy or for whom no effective standard therapy is available. Tumor types were selected based on clinical observations in the phase 1 study and a detailed analysis of potential patient stratification biomarkers across tumor indications. The study will also continue the extensive biomarker testing initiated in Phase 1, to further evaluate dose and patient populations most likely to respond.”

Editor’s note: A drug company is starting a clinical trial to test a new cancer drug called BAL101553 in volunteer patients. The trial is enrolling people with advanced or recurrent solid tumors, including people with colorectal cancer, gastric cancer or cancers of the gastro-esophageal junction, non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), ovarian cancer (or primary peritoneal), pancreatic cancer (including ampullary), and triple-negative breast cancer. Specifically, the trial is open to patients who have tried a standard treatment without benefitting or who, for whatever reason, have no effective standard treatment available to them. BAL101553 has already shown promise for some patients in a phase I trial. The new trial will continue to examine the safety and effectiveness of the drug, and it will also test patients’ tumors for specific biomarker molecules to see if patients with certain biomarkers are more likely to benefit.


Experimental Leukaemia Drug Boosts Immune Response Against Other Cancers

“Experimental drugs being tested in clinical trials for leukaemia may also boost the body’s immune response against other forms of cancer, according to research from University College London (UCL).

“The drugs target an important protein called p110δ, produced in large amounts in white blood cells called ‘leukocytes’.

“Leukaemias can develop if leukocytes become cancerous, making p110δ a promising target for treating this form of cancer.

“And recent clinical trials using these drugs have shown encouraging results. But until now the potential benefit of these drugs for other types of cancer had remained unexplored.

“In the latest study, published in Nature, researchers working with mice bearing solid tumours found that the drugs – called p110δ inhibitors – helped boost their immune response against a range of tumour types – including breast cancer.”

Editor’s note: Scientists have tested new drugs in mice with a variety of tumor types, including breast cancer, and found that the drugs may help the mice fight off cancer. These drugs are already being used in humans in clinical trials for leukemia, so it might not be long before scientists try the drugs in volunteer patients with other types of cancer.


Experimental Leukaemia Drug Boosts Immune Response Against Other Cancers

“Experimental drugs being tested in clinical trials for leukaemia may also boost the body’s immune response against other forms of cancer, according to research from University College London (UCL).

“The drugs target an important protein called p110δ, produced in large amounts in white blood cells called ‘leukocytes’.

“Leukaemias can develop if leukocytes become cancerous, making p110δ a promising target for treating this form of cancer.

“And recent clinical trials using these drugs have shown encouraging results. But until now the potential benefit of these drugs for other types of cancer had remained unexplored.

“In the latest study, published in Nature, researchers working with mice bearing solid tumours found that the drugs – called p110δ inhibitors – helped boost their immune response against a range of tumour types – including breast cancer.”

Editor’s note: Scientists have tested new drugs in mice with a variety of tumor types, including breast cancer, and found that the drugs may help the mice fight off cancer. These drugs are already being used in humans in clinical trials for leukemia, so it might not be long before scientists try the drugs in volunteer patients with other types of cancer.


Experimental Leukaemia Drug Boosts Immune Response Against Other Cancers

“Experimental drugs being tested in clinical trials for leukaemia may also boost the body’s immune response against other forms of cancer, according to research from University College London (UCL).

“The drugs target an important protein called p110δ, produced in large amounts in white blood cells called ‘leukocytes’.

“Leukaemias can develop if leukocytes become cancerous, making p110δ a promising target for treating this form of cancer.

“And recent clinical trials using these drugs have shown encouraging results. But until now the potential benefit of these drugs for other types of cancer had remained unexplored.

“In the latest study, published in Nature, researchers working with mice bearing solid tumours found that the drugs – called p110δ inhibitors – helped boost their immune response against a range of tumour types – including breast cancer.”

Editor’s note: Scientists have tested new drugs in mice with a variety of tumor types, including breast cancer, and found that the drugs may help the mice fight off cancer. These drugs are already being used in humans in clinical trials for leukemia, so it might not be long before scientists try the drugs in volunteer patients with other types of cancer.


Dicerna Pharmaceuticals Initiates Phase 1 Study of DCR-MYC in Patients with Solid Tumors and Hematological Malignancies

“Dicerna Pharmaceuticals, Inc. DRNA +0.67% , a leader in the development of RNAi-based therapeutics, today announced the initiation of a Phase 1 dose-escalating clinical study of DCR-MYC, (also known as DCR-M1711), in patients with solid tumors, multiple myeloma, or lymphoma. DCR-MYC, Dicerna’s first drug candidate to enter clinical testing, is a Dicer Substrate siRNA (DsiRNA) that targets the driver oncogene MYC, which is central to the growth of many hematologic and solid tumor malignancies. Dicerna is investigating DCR-MYC in a variety of tumor types with the initial focus on hepatocellular carcinoma.”

Editor’s note: This new drug may hold promise for people with lung cancer or melanoma, as well as other cancer types.


Dicerna Pharmaceuticals Initiates Phase 1 Study of DCR-MYC in Patients with Solid Tumors and Hematological Malignancies

“Dicerna Pharmaceuticals, Inc. DRNA +0.67% , a leader in the development of RNAi-based therapeutics, today announced the initiation of a Phase 1 dose-escalating clinical study of DCR-MYC, (also known as DCR-M1711), in patients with solid tumors, multiple myeloma, or lymphoma. DCR-MYC, Dicerna’s first drug candidate to enter clinical testing, is a Dicer Substrate siRNA (DsiRNA) that targets the driver oncogene MYC, which is central to the growth of many hematologic and solid tumor malignancies. Dicerna is investigating DCR-MYC in a variety of tumor types with the initial focus on hepatocellular carcinoma.”

Editor’s note: This new drug may hold promise for people with lung cancer or melanoma, as well as other cancer types.


New Cancer Vaccine Approach Directly Targets Dendritic Cells

“Celldex Therapeutics announced today that final data from its Phase 1 study of CDX-1401 in solid tumors, including long-term patient follow-up, have been published inScience Translational Medicine. The data demonstrate robust antibody and T cell responses and evidence of clinical benefit in patients with very advanced cancers and suggest that CDX-1401 may predispose patients to better outcomes on subsequent therapy with checkpoint inhibitors. CDX-1401 is an off-the-shelf vaccine consisting of a fully human monoclonal antibody with specificity for the dendritic cell receptor DEC-205 linked to the NY-ESO-1 tumor antigen. The vaccine is designed to activate the patient’s immune system against cancers that express the tumor marker NY-ESO-1. While the function of NY-ESO-1 continues to be explored, references in the literature suggest that its expression might reflect the acquisition of properties that cancers find useful, such as immortality, self-renewal, migratory ability and the capacity to invade.”

Editor’s note: Cancer vaccines like CDX-1401 are a type of immunotherapy, meaning that they boost a patient’s own immune system to fight cancer. CDX-1401 is able to attack tumor cells because the tumor cells have a molecule called NY-ESO-1 that CDX-1401 recognizes. We recently published a story about another treatment that is meant for patients whose tumors have NY-ESO-1. To learn more about how patients can use molecular testing to see if particular treatments might work for them, click here.


New Cancer Vaccine Approach Directly Targets Dendritic Cells

“Celldex Therapeutics announced today that final data from its Phase 1 study of CDX-1401 in solid tumors, including long-term patient follow-up, have been published inScience Translational Medicine. The data demonstrate robust antibody and T cell responses and evidence of clinical benefit in patients with very advanced cancers and suggest that CDX-1401 may predispose patients to better outcomes on subsequent therapy with checkpoint inhibitors. CDX-1401 is an off-the-shelf vaccine consisting of a fully human monoclonal antibody with specificity for the dendritic cell receptor DEC-205 linked to the NY-ESO-1 tumor antigen. The vaccine is designed to activate the patient’s immune system against cancers that express the tumor marker NY-ESO-1. While the function of NY-ESO-1 continues to be explored, references in the literature suggest that its expression might reflect the acquisition of properties that cancers find useful, such as immortality, self-renewal, migratory ability and the capacity to invade.”

Editor’s note: Cancer vaccines like CDX-1401 are a type of immunotherapy, meaning that they boost a patient’s own immune system to fight cancer. CDX-1401 is able to attack tumor cells because the tumor cells have a molecule called NY-ESO-1 that CDX-1401 recognizes. We recently published a story about another treatment that is meant for patients whose tumors have NY-ESO-1. To learn more about how patients can use molecular testing to see if particular treatments might work for them, click here.