Shanghai, China, May 28th, 2020. Elpiscience Biopharma Ltd., a clinical stage biotech company focusing on the discovery and development of next-generation cancer immunotherapies announced today that it entered a clinical collaboration with Junshi Biosicences (HKEX: 1877) to evaluate the safety, tolerability and explore early efficacy signal of its ES102, a next generation OX40 agonistic antibody, in combination with Junshi Biosciences’ toripalimab (TUOYI®), an anti-PD-1 mAb and immune checkpoint inhibitor for the treatment of solid tumors and hematological malignancies.
ES102 is a unique hexavalent OX40 agonistic antibody which has demonstrated strong single agent anti-tumor efficacy and great synergy with anti-PD1 agents in preclinical models. ES102 is currently being evaluated in dose escalation study in the US, while Elpiscience is planning clinical trials of ES102 in China, where combination with JS001 is part of the trial design.
Dr. Hongtao Lu, CSO of Elpiscience, said “We are happy to enter into a collaboration with Junshi Biosciences to evaluate ES102 and toripalimab combo in clinical trials. In China, TUOYI® is the first marketed anti-PD-1 mAb developed by a Chinese company, and Junshi Biosciences is also one of the front-runners in the IO field. We hope the promising preclinical results of ES102 and toripalimab combo could translate clinically and provide more treatment options to patients who cannot benefit from current therapies.”
Dr. Hui Feng, COO of Junshi Biosciences, said: “We have conducted extensive collaborations globally, to enhance clinical efficacy of toripalimab with innovative combination therapy. Compared with conventional OX40 antibodies, ES102 with unique design induces much strong immune activation and also demonstrates anti-tumor efficacy with PD-1 mAb in preclinical models. We expect the great potential of the ES102 and toripalimab combo therapy could be tested as soon as possible in clinical trials.”
ES102 is a hexavalent OX40 agonistic antibody with a unique “first-in-class” design. The special design of ES102 allows for efficient OX40 agonism even in the absence of exogenous cross-linking. ES102 induces much strong immune activation compared to tetrameric or conventional bivalent OX40 antibodies, it has demonstrated impressive single agent anti-tumor efficacy and great synergy with anti-PD1/PD-L1 agents in preclinical models. OX40, also known as CD134, is a member of the tumor necrosis factor (TNF) receptor family and is an important co-stimulator of T cell responses. Typically for TNF receptor family members, 3 molecules of OX40 bind to the trimeric OX40 ligand protein, activating downstream NF-κB, PI3K, and AKT pathways, which ultimately leads to increased cytokine production and is associated with enhanced T-cell expansion, differentiation, and the generation of long-lived memory T-cells.
Elpiscience is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focusing on cancer immunotherapy. The company is committed to leading the next generation of cancer immunotherapies for the benefit of cancer patients worldwide. Elpiscience has a pipeline of more than 10 innovative molecules with its most advanced asset, ES101, already in clinical trials. Elpiscience’s innovations cover a wide range of immunology targets with a focus on innate immunity and tumor microenvironment. For more information please visit: http://www.elpiscience.com.
Toripalimab is an anti-PD-1 monoclonal antibody developed by Junshi Biosciences. Toripalimab received its first approval for 2nd line treatment of metastatic melanoma on December 17, 2018 in China and was commercially launched in February 2019.
About Junshi Biosciences
Established in 2012, Junshi Biosciences is committed to developing first-in-class and best-in-class drugs through original innovation and becoming a pioneer in the area of translational medicine to provide patients with effective and affordable treatment options. On December 24, 2018, Junshi Biosciences was listed on the Main Board of the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong with the stock code: 1877.HK. The Company has established a diversified R&D pipeline comprising 21 drug candidates with therapeutic areas covering cancer, metabolic diseases, autoimmune diseases, neurologic diseases, and Infectious disease. Product types include monoclonal antibodies, fusion proteins, antibody-drug conjugates, and small molecule drugs. With a combined 33,000L fermentation capacity in two GMP-facilities at Shanghai and Suzhou, Junshi has established the manufacturing infrastructure to support commercialization and provide our partners and patients with high-quality products through a global supply chain network. For more information, please visit: www.junshipharma.com.