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Imugene (ASX:IMU) - CEO, Leslie Chong - The Market Herald
CEO, Leslie Chong
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  • Imugene (IMU) presented key findings from its HER-Vaxx immunotherapy and CF33 oncolytic virus programs at the American Association for Cancer Research's annual meeting
  • HER-Vaxx produces an antibody response against a cancer growth protein called 'HER-2'
  • New data presented at the meeting indicates that all patients develop high levels of HER-2 specific antibodies early in the treatment protocol
  • Interestingly, Dr Rita Laeufle said the data suggests treatment is effective and well-tolerated with an overall survival benefit that is superior to chemotherapy alone
  • The CF33 oncolytic virus program involved the study of a unique chimeric orthopoxvirus engineered by Dr Yanghee Woo and his team
  • The virus, termed CF33-hNIS-antiPDL1, was tested on mice and showed strong results against solid tumours and demonstrated robust anti-cancer activity against pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma
  • Imugene shares are up 6.94 per cent to 19.3 cents per share

Imugene (IMU) presented key findings from its HER-Vaxx immunotherapy and CF33 oncolytic virus programs at the American Association for Cancer Research's annual meeting.

HER-Vaxx immunotherapy programme

IMU's Chief Medical Officer, Dr Rita Laeufle presented the HER-Vaxx immunotherapy programme, expanding on previous data and highlighting new key findings.

HER-Vaxx is designed to produce an antibody response against a cancer growth signal receptor protein called 'HER-2', which is found on the cell surface in gastric, breast, ovarian, lung and pancreatic cancers.

Pre-clinical studies, as well as the phase one and two studies, have shown the immunotherapy stimulates a polyclonal antibody response to HER-2/neu, a well-known cancer target.

In support of this previous data, Dr Rita Laeufle explained during the virtual presentation that new data indicates all patients develop high levels of HER-2 specific antibodies early in the treatment protocol.

Further, analysis of the antibody data reveals high levels are maintained during the treatment and maintenance phases, with minimal booster injections of HER-Vaxx required to maintain the high levels.

Overall, Dr Rita Laeufle said the data suggests treatment is effective and well-tolerated with an overall survival benefit that is superior to chemotherapy alone.

This supports the interim analysis data released in 2020, which showed HER-Vaxx contributed to a reduced risk of death of 58.2 per cent in the HER-Vaxx plus chemotherapy group as compared to chemotherapy alone.

The median overall survival for patients receiving HER-Vaxx plus chemotherapy
was 14.2 months, compared to 8.8 months in patients treated with chemotherapy
alone.

The final tumour response, correlation of antibodies with tumour response, and final progression-free survival and overall survival data is expected sometime this year.

CF33 oncolytic virus program

Also at the meeting, City of Hope’s Dr Yanghee Woo gave a presentation on the CF33 oncolytic virus program.

Based in California, City of Hope is a world-renowned independent research and treatment centre for cancer, diabetes and other life-threatening diseases.

The abstract presentation was titled ‘Subcutaneous Intratumoral Administration of CF33-hNISanti-PD-L1 Eradicates Distant Peritoneal Tumors’.

Dr Woo's team engineered CF33-hNIS-antiPDL1, which is a unique chimeric orthopoxvirus.

It shows robust preclinical activity against solid tumors and strong anti-cancer activity against pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC).

The team investigated the orthopoxvirus' ability to track and kill distant peritoneal metastases after local virus administration in vivo.

Using a PDAC mouse model, the team found that subcutaneous intratumoral delivery of the orthopoxvirus decreases peritoneal tumour burden and improves survival.

Both the HER-Vaxx immunotherapy program and CF33 oncolytic virus program presentations can be viewed online.

Imugene shares are up 6.94 per cent to 19.3 cents per share at 10:43 am AEST.

IMU by the numbers
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