Marseille, France, October 20, 2021 - ImCheck Therapeutics announced today the publication of the preclinical to clinical development of its lead immuno-oncology program, ICT01. The publication in the medical journal Science Translational Medicine details ImCheck’s butyrophilin (BTN)-based immuno-oncology approach and positions ImCheck as a pioneer in a nascent field of immunomodulation. ICT01 is a fully-humanized anti-BTN3A monoclonal antibody designed to selectively activate gamma 9 delta 2 (Vγ9Vδ2) T cells through all three isoforms of BTN3A (1/2/3), which are expressed on the surface of innate and adaptive immune cells and overexpressed on the tumor cells of a number of solid and hematologic cancers.
The article, titled “Development of ICT01, a first-in-class, anti-BTN3A antibody for activating Vγ9Vδ2 T cell-mediated anti-tumor immune response” describes the molecular mechanism of how ICT01 activates Vγ9Vδ2 T cells in a pAg-independent and BTN3A isoform-agnostic manner, overcoming the two key limitations of prior efforts to activate Vγ9Vδ2 T cells. In the first-in-human EVICTION Phase I/IIa clinical trial, ICT01 demonstrated selective activation of Vγ9Vδ2 T cells, causing them to rapidly migrate out of the circulation and into tumor tissue. Furthermore, ICT01-activated Vγ9Vδ2 T cells secrete IFNγ and TNF that expands the anti-tumor immune response by recruiting CD3 and CD8 T cells into tumors.
“This very comprehensive publication describes the bench-to-bedside story of ICT01 and presents in detail ImCheck’s novel and differentiated immunotherapeutic approach,” said Paul Frohna, PharmD, Chief Medical Officer of ImCheck. “ICT01’s unique design circumvents prior limitations of activating Vγ9Vδ2 T cells in cancer patients, making it a promising candidate for the treatment of a broad range of cancers. We look forward to building upon these published results in an upcoming presentation at the SITC 2021 Annual Meeting.”
“Our mission is to apply our scientific expertise and clinical leadership with the BTN superfamily of immunomodulators to bring innovative therapeutics to patients. The publication of these findings in Science Translational Medicine exemplifies our leadership in BTN research as a promising avenue of investigation for cancer immunotherapy and supports the further development of our pipeline of other BTN-targeted programs,” stated Pierre d’Epenoux, Chief Executive Officer of ImCheck Therapeutics.
The publication was authored by ImCheck scientists in collaboration with the laboratory of Prof. Daniel Olive, Professor of Immunology and Director of the Oncology Research Programs at Aix Marseille University and the company’s scientific founder.