Cancer Research UK and Cancer Research Technology (CRT), the charity’s commercial arm, have signed an agreement with TYG oncology Ltd (TYG) to take its new antigen-specific, active checkpoint control cancer vaccine TYG100, into clinical trials in cancer patients with advanced solid tumours.
TYG100 is among a range of new treatments that use a patient’s own immune system to target hormones that encourage the growth and spread of solid tumours. It works by triggering the production of antibodies that specifically target two members of the gastrin hormone family* that help to fuel tumour growth.
Under the agreement, Cancer Research UK and TYG will share the cost of the process development and production of TYG100 for the clinic.
Cancer Research UK’s Centre for Drug Development (CDD) will then sponsor and manage a Phase I clinical trial of TYG100 in cancer patients with advanced solid tumours, mainly to evaluate drug safety and toxicity. It will take place across the Experimental Cancer Medicine Centres (ECMC) network, a nationwide initiative funded by Cancer Research UK and the UK’s four Health Departments.
The collaboration forms part of Cancer Research UK’s Clinical Development Partnership (CPD) scheme, meaning that at the end of the trial, TYG oncology has the option of either retaining rights to the new treatment or transferring them to Cancer Research UK to continue development through a new partner.
Fred Jacobs, president of TYG oncology, said: “We are very pleased to be working in partnership with the clinical experience and expertise from Cancer Research UK to advance TYG100. Cancer Research UK’s sponsorship of the Phase I clinical trial is a significant technical and financial validation of our novel therapeutic vaccine. TYG100 will be attacking some of the most difficult and deadliest solid tumours, including pancreatic and gastro-oesophageal cancers.”
Dr Nigel Blackburn, Cancer Research UK’s director of drug development, said: “We hope that next generation cancer vaccines like this one will build on the widespread success of existing hormonal treatments – such as those targeting oestrogen in breast cancer and testosterone in prostate cancer. It’s a very promising area of research and we’re excited to be working with TYG oncology to take this to the next stage.”
“Our Clinical Development Partnerships are a novel approach that allows companies to benefit from Cancer Research UK’s extensive drug development resources in a way that is mutually beneficial and that ultimately helps new treatments reach patients more quickly.”
* Gastrin 17 and Glycine-extended Gastrin 17