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Oncos Therapeutics presents achievement in cancer immunotherapy

The clinical stage biotechnology company has presented data on its lead compound, ONCOS-102.

The data, presented in two separate podium presentations on May 7th and 8th at the Annual Meeting of the Association for Cancer Immunotherapy (CIMT) in Mainz, Germany, demonstrated that local administration of ONCOS-102 is able to induce a systemic, tumor-specific immune response in late-stage cancer patients. ONCOS-102 is a modified, tumor-targeted, human adenovirus armed with a potent immune-stimulating transgene, GM-CSF.

The single center phase I study was conducted at Docrates Cancer Center in Helsinki, Finland. Twelve patients with advanced solid tumors of different types were treated with up to nine intratumoral injections at three different dose levels of ONCOS-102. According to Oncos Therapeutics, the treatment displayed an excellent safety profile and the study confirmed the dose level for a forthcoming phase II clinical trial. During the trial, a number of biological samples were collected prior to and after ONCOS-102 treatment to evaluate the biological activity of the therapy.

Sample analysis showed that the treatment triggered an immediate innate immune response as measured by a temporary increase in pro-inflammatory cytokines and infiltration of innate immune cells into the tumor area. Oncos Therapeutics states that these responses were seen in both blood and tumor biopsies. Also, an infiltration of CD8+ T cells of cytotoxic phenotype was seen in post-treatment biopsies. Analysis of the antigen specificity of cytotoxic T cells in peripheral blood prior to and after treatment with ONCOS-102 showed that the therapy induced a tumor-specific immunity in patients with advanced solid tumors.

“Demonstrating the induction of tumor-targeted immune responses in late stage cancer patients is a significant achievement in cancer immunotherapy, even though the number of study subjects was limited in this trial,” said Magnus Jaderberg, M.D., Chief Medical Officer of Oncos.