Achilles Therapeutics Doses First Patient with Higher-dose cNeT in Phase I/IIa CHIRON Trial in Advanced NSCLC and Initiates Enrollment in Cohort B of the THETIS Trial (cNeT + PD-1 checkpoint inhibitor) in Metastatic Malignant Melanoma
- THETIS Cohort B enrollment follows positive Independent Data Safety Monitoring Committee review -
- Monotherapy data from higher-dose cohorts in both CHIRON and THETIS and combination data from THETIS Cohort B expected in 2H 2022 -
London, UK, 9 May 2022 – Achilles Therapeutics plc (NASDAQ: ACHL), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing precision T cell therapies to treat solid tumors, today announced that the first patient has been dosed with personalized clonal neoantigen-reactive T cells, or cNeT, manufactured with the Company’s higher-dose VELOS™ Process 2 in the ongoing Phase I/IIa CHIRON clinical trial for the treatment of advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Additionally, following a positive review by an Independent Data Safety Monitoring Committee, the Company has initiated enrollment in Cohort B of the THETIS clinical trial to evaluate cNeT in combination with a PD-1 checkpoint inhibitor for the treatment of metastatic malignant melanoma.
“Dosing the first patient in CHIRON with cNeT from our higher-dose manufacturing process and initiating enrollment in THETIS Cohort B, which will evaluate cNeT in combination with a PD-1 inhibitor, are major milestones for Achilles. Our personalized cell therapy has been developed to address the hardest to treat cancers, including NSCLC and melanoma, which often become resistant to other treatments,” said Dr Iraj Ali, Chief Executive Officer of Achilles Therapeutics. “Our VELOS Process 2 has been shown to deliver increased cNeT doses while retaining T cell fitness. We are excited by the therapeutic potential of our higher-dose cNeT monotherapy and cNeT combination treatments and look forward to reporting clinical data in the second half of 2022.”
VELOS is a scalable commercial manufacturing process designed to be closed and automated. The proprietary process uses dendritic cells to deliver a personalized, precision T cell-based therapy that selectively targets multiple clonal neoantigens with improved T cell fitness and reduced need for high-dose IL-2. As original mutations formed early in cancer development, clonal neoantigens are protein markers present on all cancer cells but absent from healthy tissue, making them ideal cancer targets.
“Over 2 million patients are diagnosed with lung cancer annually worldwide, with NSCLC accounting for 82% of all diagnoses. The current prognosis is poor with a 35% five-year survival rate for patients with advanced NSCLC, dropping to 7% for those with metastatic NSCLC,” added Dr Karl Peggs, Chief Medical Officer of Achilles Therapeutics. “Melanoma is the fifth most common cancer among men and women, with a survival rate of 30% when it has spread to other, distant parts of the body. Since both are common indications with poor prognosis at advanced stages, we look forward to evaluating how our higher-dose cNeT therapy and combination with a PD-1 inhibitor may help improve treatment responses and change the paradigm for these patients.”
About Achilles Therapeutics
Achilles is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing precision T cell therapies targeting clonal neoantigens: protein markers unique to the individual that are expressed on the surface of every cancer cell. The Company has two ongoing Phase I/IIa trials, the CHIRON trial in patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and the THETIS trial in patients with recurrent or metastatic melanoma. Achilles uses DNA sequencing data from each patient, together with its proprietary AI-Powered PELEUS™ bioinformatics platform, to identify clonal neoantigens specific to that patient, and then develop precision T cell-based product candidates specifically targeting those clonal neoantigens.
About the CHIRON and THETIS Clinical Trials
CHIRON is an open-label, multi-center Phase I/IIa clinical trial evaluating the safety, tolerability, and clinical activity of cNeT therapy as a single dose in adult patients with advanced metastatic NSCLC. THETIS is an open-label, multi-center Phase I/IIa clinical trial evaluating the safety, tolerability, and clinical efficacy of cNeT therapy as a single dose in patients with recurrent or metastatic malignant melanoma as monotherapy and in combination with a PD-1 inhibitor.
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Consilium Strategic Communications
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