Merck & Co and TetraLogic in Keytruda combo deal
This article was originally published in Scrip
Merck & Co and TetraLogic are to collaborate on a Phase I trial testing Merck's anti-PD-1 therapy Keytruda (pembrolizumab) with TetraLogic's SMAC-mimetic in patients with relapsed or refractory solid tumors. The deal builds on the growing trend to combine agents that act in different ways help the body's immune system to fight against cancer - a Phase II study combining Bristol-Myers Squibb's Yervoy (ipilimumab) with Opdivo (nivolumab) has just shown highly promising results in melanoma albeit with some side-effect problems. TetraLogic says its birinapant (TL32711) is a bivalent SMAC-mimetic that binds with differential affinity to multiple members of the IAP family in order to re-establish the immune system's ability to kill abnormal cells via an extracellular TNF signal. Like Opdivo, Merck’s Keytruda is one of a number of agents targeting the interaction between PD-1 (programmed death receptor-1) and its ligands, PD-L1 and PD-L2. Under the terms of the agreement, TetraLogic and Merck will collaborate on an initial Phase I dose-escalation study of the combination. TetraLogic will sponsor and fund the study and Merck will provide Keytruda. Results from the study will be used to determine the path for further clinical development of the combination.
You may also be interested in...
Novartis’s AveXis unit has received a CHMP nod for the spinal muscular atrophy gene therapy at its latest meeting, sending it on the final steps to market in the EU.
The arrival of SARS-CoV-2 has focused attention on a potential new way of making vaccines – one that promises to be quicker and cheaper than traditional methods and more reactive to novel virus outbreaks, but also one that remains to be validated.
The German biotech firm has denied receiving any offer from the Trump administration in a wide-ranging conference call that also addressed recent changes at the top, its clinical timeline for a coronavirus vaccine and new funds from the European Commission to boost production.