Biotech Strategy Blog

Commentary on Science, Innovation & New Products with a focus on Oncology, Hematology & Cancer Immunotherapy

Dawn of new era?

Not what many might have expected before the meeting.

Many presenters will likely make claims for a particular regimen or treatment changing the standard of care, but few will really make us stop and go… WOW!

One trial has had this effect at ESMO this year thus far.

So what’s the skinny?

BSB subscribers can read more on our latest update and commentary from the ESMO conference – you can log-in or click to access our latest analysis.

This content is restricted to subscribers

As we continue our review and discussion of early new product developments at ESMO this year, it’s time to turn our attention to some IO based agents, either along or in combination with other approaches.

Is the situation a bright and breezy one or full of gloomy clouds with little or no silver lining to speak of?

Yesterday’s review of early targeted agents was a surprisingly popular one, so let’s see how the immunotherapy based approaches do…

BSB subscribers can read more on our latest update and commentary from the ESMO conference – you can log-in or click to access our latest analysis.

This content is restricted to subscribers

Pathways to success – or not?

When it comes to oncology new product development there are always multiple factors to consider, from novel targets, new combinations, different tumour types or settings, biomarkers, to patient subsets and much more.

At ESMO this year the poster session provides a particularly rich resource of early stage trials involving fresh ideas or novel approaches to explore on both the translational and clinical fronts.

In our latest conference coverage we highlight a few noteworthy ones and also point out some of the important subtleties and nuances to be aware of, since they may have a key impact on future trial success.

What’s not to like?

BSB subscribers can read more on our latest update and commentary from the ESMO conference – you can log-in or click to access our latest review.

This content is restricted to subscribers

What’s standing out from the crowd in lung cancer?

It seems hard to imagine only a few years ago lung cancer was still in the doldrums with various chemotherapy doublet and triplet regimens showing little or no benefit for people with small cell (SCLC) or non-small cell (NSCLC) lung cancer.

Fast forward and my, how things have changed today with a raft of targeted and immunotherapies making a real difference to many people’s lives!

In our latest discussion highligting important trial readouts and published data, we also offer some potential new developments which might be useful down the road…

BSB subscribers can read more on our latest update and commentary regarding lung cancer – you can log-in or click to access our latest analysis.

This content is restricted to subscribers

Source: AlphaFold

In today’s post we’re going to discuss some new findings and explore important research published on different aspects of the same central target.

What can we learn, what are the implications, and what new developments are emerging in this niche?

You can clearly see from the Alphafold database representation of the protein structure (right), while the blue central section can be predicted with a high degree of confidence there is quite a bit on the spindly periphery with much less confidence.  Does this impact our ability to drug the target?

Perhaps, but there is also much around the cell interactions and processes involved we don’t know either.

The good news is there are some intriguing new developments worthy of review and discussion…

BSB subscribers can read more on our latest commentary and progress on an intractable drug target – you can log-in or click to access the sparkly content.

This content is restricted to subscribers

Where are we headed in the DDR niche?

The dog days of summer always seem to portend a mix of sunny days and stormy skies ahead…

In this latest report we cover important issues around homologous repair deficiency (HRD), new replication stress targets, as well as how both analysis and assays are being developed to meet the evolving needs of the field.

There is much nuance going on behind the scenes, which will be important to keep up to date with, including some tumour types not previously associated with DNA damage repair, something we highlight in this post.

These findings might have implications for future regimens and may explain some of the undetected mechanisms of resistance we are seeing in existing trials being presented at ESMO or the forthcoming Molecular Targets (TRIPLE) meeting.

There are also diagnostic developments to think about, not just therapeutic ones…

BSB subscribers can read more on our latest update regarding HRD and DDR inhibitors, plus our latest expert interview – you can log-in or click to access the new content.

This content is restricted to subscribers

Time for some new directions in lung cancer?

It seems only a few months ago we covered WCLC20 and here we are again with another lung cancer conference.  This is because the pandemic certainly made an impact last year in more ways than one since the meeting was split into two, with the second half of the sessions being showcased in January.

This time around we highlight quite a few presentations on the IO and KRAS related pathway fronts, as well as some updates on various targeted therapies – with a few unexpected surprises in store.

There are also some important genomic and biomarker presentations to watch out for…

BSB subscribers can read more on our latest cancer conference preview  – you can log-in or click to access our latest expert interview.

This content is restricted to subscribers

Two people can look at a mountain and see it differently

We have written quite a bit about protein degradation and molecular glues over the last two years, including sharing our findings, analysis and discussions with various company and academic expert interviews.

This time around it’s time to look at another biotech active in this space, albeit with completely different targets and approaches than what we have covered in detail previously.

We also look at what makes a great target from their perspective and how a deep understanding of certain elements may give them an advantage.

One of the beauties of this niche for me is not everyone is doing the exact same thing and there’s plenty of room for novel ideas to flourish and be investigated in both discovery and clinical phases.

So what’s unique about this company and why should you pay attention to what they are doing?

BSB subscribers can read more on our latest discussion around some novel early stage pipeline targets plus a company interview – you can log-in or click to access our latest content.

This content is restricted to subscribers

Source: AlphaFold

Our latest post discusses key topics around the novel target shown on the right – brownie points to anyone who can guess which one it is!

Aside from having a lot of fun exploring protein targets with DeepMind’s AlphaFold tool, they also help illustrate something important, which is the degree of confidence around the various aspects from dark blue for high confidence and yellow for very low confidence predictions.

Tau, if you haven’t yet seen it, is truly a hot mess compared to today’s choice!

While there is always the concern about whether a particular protein is a marker or a valid oncogene target, we have to start somewhere and see where the clinical trials take us because some modalities might turn out to be much better ways of approaching the problem of ‘druggability’ than others.

I went into this foray with an open mind and some degree of hope because let’s face it, we need more new agents against novel targets than we do of yet more me-toos against old targets…

BSB subscribers can read more on our latest update regarding a novel early stage pipeline target – you can log-in or click to access our latest content.

This content is restricted to subscribers

A decade ago Novartis and Genentech/Roche were all the rage in oncology with their small molecule, CAR-T cell therapies, and a myriad of antibody programs seemingly in the news every month then things went quiet as agents either successfully made it to market, or were dutifully dispatched to dog drug heaven.

In the meantime, other companies and various novel targets came to the fore such as various next generation agents in lung cancer, bispecific T cell engagers, KRAS inhibitors, and such like, while different companies and targets took on a new focus.

This doesn’t mean the big two aren’t active, more that they are replenishing and moving earlier compounds along and these can take a while to move through discovery and preclinical to phase 1 trials.  The bridge across the two is always kept busy in large pharmas, in both directions.

With this in mind, I was keen to catch up with Novartis to discuss their new early stage pipeline.  It’s both broad and deep, as you might expect, but what stands out and what’s something new to watch out for?

BSB subscribers can read more on our latest update regarding SHP2 and RAS addicted cancers as well as other early stage pipeline targets – you can log-in or click to access our latest expert interview.

This content is restricted to subscribers

Free Email Updates
Subscribe to new post alerts, offers, and additional content!
We respect your privacy and do not sell emails. Unsubscribe at any time.
error: Content is protected !!