Biotech Strategy Blog

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

Posts from the ‘Cancer’ category

Colon cancer cells Source: NCI Center for Cancer Research

We have covered a tremendous array of different modalities here at BSB from chemotherapies, targeted therapies, immunotherapies, encompassing cytotoxics, small molecules, antibodies, bispecifics, various conjugates, and even viral therapy approaches, but what about the potential for bacterial approaches having an impact in cancer research?

This is isn’t something we come across every day week and thus it piqued our interest.

If we want to start thinking about creative ways to hit hard to target oncogenes then maybe we need to think outside the box a bit with some bold ideas…

To learn more about some intriguing translational data and get a heads up on our oncology commentary and insights, subscribers can log-in or you can click to gain access to BSB Premium Content.

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Earlier this week we highlighted how click chemistry technology has enabled the development of a protodrug platform with inert polymers for more targeted delivery of chemotherapeutic drugs.

Similarly, another related approach we can consider to reduce unwanted adverse events is the prodrug concept. In this situation, a potent chemotherapy is activated in the tumour where it is most needed thereby reducing the toxic effects on normal cells and improving tolerability for people receiving the therapy.

Can prodrug technology deliver potent alkylator chemotherapy in a much more targeted fashion in the tumour?

One of the well known challenges and limitations associated with standard alkylating chemotherapies has always been the indiscriminate toxicities resulting from systemic administration – they impact both cancer cells and normal cells with impunity.

What if we could develop a more targeted chemotherapy approach?

This might be useful for some people with advanced cancer where a modicum of disease control is needed, so how would we go about achieving this aim?

Here’s one way to potentially accomplish the task…

To learn more about these insights and get a heads up on our latest oncology expert interview, subscribers can log-in or you can click to gain access to BSB Premium Content.

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One of the inevitable aspects of a new year is a fresh start and spring cleaning attitude to almost everything. This is also true of oncology R&D too – there are also a lot of cool ideas out there, which can get lost in the noise and hullabaloo of life, especially when the political climate is attracting much attention or distraction.

Shining a light on protodrugs

In our latest mini-series we have been chatting with a variety of academic and company executives about their perspectives on emerging novel and innovative technological approaches in cancer therapeutics.

The examples chosen for this series encompass a wide variety of different approaches from chemotherapies and targeted therapies all the way to cell and gene therapies. I can tell you now that some of them are so out-of-the-box they may have an real element of surprise and aura about them.

It’s time to shine a light and lift up new ideas challenging old dogma.

Perhaps surprisingly, some of these cool approaches may also have the potential for intersection and overlap with each other, as today’s intriguing example illustrates…

To learn more about the insights and get a heads up on our latest oncology expert interview, subscribers can log-in or you can click to gain access to BSB Premium Content.

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Fans of Harry Potter, will no doubt be familiar with the Goblet of Fire (“La Coupe de Feu” in the French version) and how it was used to select the champions from three schools of magic who would compete against each other in a tournament.

The metaphor of fire is very apt when it comes to cancer immunotherapy, as we’re often seeking to either create or optimally target an inflamed tumour microenvironment.

In this post were looking at how prior research and an understanding of science can sometimes lead to an unexpected contender in the “Goblet of Fire” that is early stage cancer drug development. Could the contender end up as the new champion AKA standard of care?

As in the Harry Potter story, there are trials that have to be conducted and overcome along the way, and until the data reads out there is uncertainty as to how the story will end.

Intrigued? Do read on…

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Every now and again something intriguing comes along, which generates a flurry of interest from our readers in terms of early stage pipeline developments.

This example is no exception to the rule, judging from the enthusiastic questions we’ve received over the last couple of months.

Wit a raft of new clinical data available there’s a clear opportunity to explore exactly what’s what and is there something special coming along or is there a real risk/worry this might turn out rather like the IDO pathway with mixed red and green signals floating around?

The only problem here is after carefully reviewing all the evidence I found myself firmly in the sceptics/bear camp, at least for now.

It’s time to walk you all through what we found and what it all means…

To learn more about some ASCO GU21 and other recent data to get a heads up on our latest oncology insights, subscribers can log-in or you can click to gain access to BSB Premium Content.

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Quote of the Day from Tower Hill Tube station a couple of years ago is rather apt when comparing different cancer therapies

Every novel cancer immunotherapy has its day in the limelight, although it obviously goes without saying we shouldn’t compare them unless in a head-to-head trial.

What if the comparisons are made using the wrong parameters, however?

Well, this just compounds the problem further and does neither product nor company or researchers any justice.

This time around we continue the latest chapter in an story we have been following for several years now before it was really in many people’s conscience.

Sometimes it helps to go back to the beginning to see how far things have come, other times it is more useful to look in a broader context of the space it is competing in.

In this latest installment we attempt a look at both plus offer some commentary on how it could be viewed…

 

To learn more about the latest immunotherapy data and get a heads up on our oncology commentary and insights, subscribers can log-in or you can click to gain access to BSB Premium Content.

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Gems from the poster halls are always a popular series at cancer conferences where we highlight emerging early stage agents of interest.

Not every oncology development has gone to the dogs – there are some gems out there too

This time around we look at some data from a China biotech, another peek at TIGIT, resistance to a targeted therapy, a novel antibody target and a real world study, which both inspired and caught my attention.

As always with oncology R&D it isn’s always plain sailing – there are sometimes some surprising results (good and bad), spanners in the works and also some really useful trial designs to consider.

What can we learn from the latest round of presentations?

Let’s roll!

To learn more about the early stage data and get a heads up on our latest oncology insights, subscribers can log-in or you can click to gain access to BSB Premium Content.

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A couple of decades ago it was fun to follow and write about the first generation of EGFR inhibitors and the EGFR mutation versus wild-type race in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).

Singapore skyline – a reminder of where WCLC was broadcast from last week

A number of resistance mechanisms have since evolved and these also vary according to what is given in each line.  One increasing area of interest has been exon 20 insertions, which can be seen with both EGFR and HER2+ lung cancer.

I’m willing to bet no one back then would have imagine we would be talking about a highly competitive sub-niche of exon 20 insertion small molecule inhibitors and bispecifics twenty years on.

We wrote about this niche a few times last year and with increasing competition the landscape is heating up so it’s time for a strategic look at the various developments…

To learn more about the WCLC20 data and get a heads up on our latest oncology insights, subscribers can log-in or you can click to gain access to BSB Premium Content.

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It’s February 2nd, which means Groundhog Day in America. I was idly wondering how accurate the rodent Punxsutawney Phil was, after all, he’s got a 50:50 shot of being right or wrong.  Who knew someone had analysed the predictions already and what’s more – published them?!

Meanwhile we don’t need no predictions for today’s post, where we look at the evidence gleaned from several clinical studies in lung cancer and come to some important strategic conclusions about the findings.

To learn more about the WCLC20 data and get a heads up on our latest oncology insights, subscribers can log-in or you can click to gain access to BSB Premium Content.

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It feels weird to be covering the WCLC from Singapore remotely after remembering the rain in Spain at WCLC19!

If we look at the more mature phase 2 data now available for Amgen’s sotorasib (AMG 510) in KRAS G12C driven lung cancers, we learn there are quite a few nuances and subtleties at play. These aren’t always obvious in top line press releases or even in presentations until we consider the broader niche in which they are competing.

Amgen submitted the sotorasib applications to both the US and EMA health authorities in December.  With breakthrough designation status and clinical evidence of activity in an area of high unmet medical need, it’s hard to believe the approval won’t be forthcoming sooner rather than later, at least in the US.

Mirati is expected to showcase their phase 2 data later this year, so I would highly encourage people to hold off with cross-trial comparisons until we see how their more robust data look at the RP2D.

In the meantime, we can take a careful look at the latest Amgen data.  We do those not only from a BSB review but also through the lens of a company perspective and consider some of the key strategic issues we need to start thinking about…

To learn more about the WCLC20 data and get a heads up on our latest oncology insights, subscribers can log-in or you can click to gain access to BSB Premium Content.

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