Gothenburg, Sweden, 2016-02-01 08:45 CET (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) —
Immunicum AB (publ) today announced that the University Hospital in Uppsala has received clearance to initiate a clinical study in patients with neuroendocrine tumors with the Company’s genetically modified adenovirus vector.
The study, funded by private donors, will be the first in the world to test the effect of a genetically engineered oncolytic virus in neuroendocrine tumors. A virus is called oncolytic if it preferentially infects cancer cells and upon proliferating “burst” the tumor cells and subsequently infect neighboring cancer cells.
In total, up to 35 patients at Uppsala Academic Hospital will be included in the study, twelve of which will be part of a first phase I-part where progressively higher doses will be tested to investigate possible adverse events. The study is expected to last about two years.
“Alongside the immunotherapeutic progress that is now made in cancer treatment, we think that oncolytic technologies are among the most promising. Our adenovirus technology also has the potential to act as “carriers” of cancer antigens to activate the immune system in the fight against tumor cells, “said Immunicum’s CEO Jamal El-Mosleh.
Immunicum acquired the rights to the patented adenovirus, called Ad5PTDf35, in October 2014 for all application areas outside of neuroendocrine tumors. Within this area, Immunicum has rights to royalties and other payments that may be generated from the sale of the product to third parties.
The technology has been developed by a research group at the Rudbeck Laboratory, Uppsala University, led by Professor Magnus Essand.
For further information please contact:
Jamal El-Mosleh, CEO, Immunicum
Telephone: +46 (0) 31 41 50 52
The Company’s Certified Adviser is Redeye AB
Telephone: +46 (0) 8 545 013 31. www.redeye.se
About Immunicum AB (publ)
Immunicum AB (publ) develops cancer immune primers for the treatment of tumor diseases. A clinical phase II trial with the Company’s most advanced product – INTUVAX® against kidney cancer – has been initiated. The project portfolio contains additional clinical phase I/II studies in liver cancer and in gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST).
About the Ad5PTDf35 adenovirus vector technology
An adenovirus vector is a virus particle that can infect cells, deliver a therapeutic gene of interest or propagate inside the infected host cell. The method is used in most of the gene therapies that are marketed or are in development, but has also received increased attention in the direct therapeutic applications, as in the above-described Uppsala study. Immunicum investigating the possibility of using the Ad5PTDf35-adenovirus vector to load the Company’s cancer immune primer, SUBCUVAX, with tumor antigens to activate the body’s own immune system against cancer cells.