“Standard treatments for metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer are effective, but resistance develops and different approaches are needed,” said Antoinette R. Tan, M.D., M.H.Sc., Chief of Breast Medical Oncology at Levine Cancer Institute, Carolinas HealthCare System, Charlotte, N.C. “This Phase 1b trial tests the approach of using an attenuated bacteria that has been shown in preclinical studies to disable the tumor’s ability to hide from and resist therapy, potentially offering a novel therapeutic strategy for patients with HER2-positive tumors.”
The poster, titled “A multicenter, Phase 1b, first-in-human dose-escalation study of ADXS31-164, a listeria monocytogenes-LLO immunotherapy, in patients with HER2-expressing solid tumors,” will be presented by Dr. Tan. As of October 20, 2015, this study has enrolled three patients.
The Phase 1b study in humans builds upon efficacy and safety data from Phase 1 clinical studies of ADXS-HER2 conducted in dogs with osteosarcoma, which may have important translational relevance for human patients with osteosarcoma and other HER2 expressing cancers. Preliminary data from a Phase 1 clinical trial in companion dogs with spontaneous osteosarcoma showed that administration of ADXS-HER2 following amputation and chemotherapy was safe and induced immune responses against HER2 expressing tumors in 15 out of 18 dogs. Median survival times for ADXS-HER2 treated dogs and a matched historical control group were 956 days and 423 days respectively. Overall survival rates at 1 and 2 years for dogs treated with ADXS-HER2 were 77.8 percent and 67 percent respectively and 55 percent and 28 percent respectively for the historical control group. Based on these encouraging results, ADXS-HER2 is being considered for expedited approval in 2016 by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to treat canine osteosarcoma.
Furthermore, preliminary data from a second ongoing canine Phase 1/2 trial suggests that ADXS-HER2 in combination with palliative radiation may delay primary and metastatic tumor progression and prolong overall survival in a subset of pet dogs with spontaneous osteosarcoma that do not undergo amputation or chemotherapy.
The European Medicines Agency (EMA) recently granted Orphan Drug Designation for ADXS-HER2 for the treatment of osteosarcoma in humans.
About HER2 Expressing Solid Tumor Cancers
Human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) is overexpressed in a percentage of solid tumors such as breast, gastric, bladder, brain, pancreatic, ovarian and pediatric bone cancer (osteosarcoma). The American Cancer Society estimates that in 2015 in the United States alone there will be 231,840 new cases of invasive breast cancer; 24,590 new cases of gastric cancer; 74,000 new cases of bladder cancer; 22,850 new cases of brain/spinal cancer; 48,960 new cases of pancreatic cancer; 21,290 new cases of ovarian cancer; and 207 new cases of pediatric osteosarcoma. HER2 expression is associated with more aggressive disease, increased risk of relapse and decreased overall survival, and is an important target for immunotherapy.
ADXS-HER2 is an Lm Technology™ immunotherapy product candidate being developed by Advaxis to target HER2 expressing cancers. ADXS-HER2 has received orphan drug designation by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) for the treatment of osteosarcoma. Advaxis is developing ADXS-HER2 for both human and animal health, and has seen encouraging data in canine osteosarcoma, which is considered a model for human osteosarcoma. Advaxis has licensed ADXS-HER2 and three other immunotherapy constructs to Aratana Therapeutics, Inc. for the development of pet therapeutics.
Clinical trials of ADXS-HER2 have been placed on clinical hold by the FDA. Advaxis is working closely with the FDA and expects this clinical hold will be resolved expeditiously.
About Advaxis, Inc.
Located in Princeton, N.J., Advaxis, Inc. is a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing multiple cancer immunotherapies based on its proprietary Lm Technology™. The LmTechnology™, using bioengineered live attenuated Listeria monocytogenes (Lm) bacteria, is the only known cancer immunotherapy agent shown in preclinical studies to both generate cancer fighting T-cells directed against a cancer antigen and neutralize Tregs and myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs) that protect the tumor microenvironment from immunologic attack and contribute to tumor growth. Advaxis’s lead Lm Technology™ immunotherapy, axalimogene filolisbac, targets human papillomavirus (HPV)-associated cancers and is in clinical trials for three potential indications: Phase 2 in invasive cervical cancer, Phase 1/2 in head and neck cancer, and Phase 1/2 in anal cancer. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted axalimogene filolisbac orphan drug designation for each of these three clinical settings. Advaxis has two additional immunotherapy products: ADXS-PSA in prostate cancer and ADXS-HER2 in HER2 expressing solid tumors, in human clinical development.
Clinical trials of axalimogene filolisbac, ADXS-PSA and ADXS-HER2 have been placed on clinical hold by the FDA. Advaxis is working closely with the FDA and expects this clinical hold will be resolved expeditiously and without significant interruption to the Company’s clinical development programs.
For additional information on Advaxis, visit www.advaxis.com and connect on Twitter, LinkedIn,Facebook, YouTube and Google+.
This media statement contains forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to: statements regarding Advaxis’s ability to develop the next generation of cancer immunotherapies; and the safety and efficacy of Advaxis’s proprietary immunotherapies. These forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks, including the risk factors set forth from time to time in Advaxis’s SEC filings, including but not limited to its report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended October 31, 2014, which is available at http://www.sec.gov. Advaxis undertakes no obligation to publicly release the result of any revision to these forward-looking statements, which may be made to reflect the events or circumstances after the date hereof or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events, except as required by law. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on any forward-looking statements.