New Orleans, American Queen
After yesterday’s enlightening conversation on novel ways to jumpstart the immune system including OX40, vaccines, and STING with a self-confessed radicalist aka cancer immunologist (Dr Bernard Fox), we now turn to a self-described optimist for an industry perspective on oncology R&D and Part 2 of our anti-OX40 mini-series:
- What ideas and challenges need to be considered in order to develop a new agent against a novel target, alone or in combination with another unapproved agent?
- We know that mouse models and biomarkers aren’t optimal yet, so how do those issues and other factors influence decision making and clinical trial design?
- It’s not so easy as many think – there are way more unknowns than knowns – so how do companies go about tackling them?
- What can we learn from the readouts?
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It’s the end of April and just in time for two important things here on BSB…
A) Season 2 of our Novel Targets podcast has now kicked off!
The first show (sponsored by Genentech) explores the cancer immunity cycle (CIC), how it can help see the bigger picture and how this framework can be used to help figure out what areas are missing when patients don’t respond to immunotherapy.
There are also predictions about what we will see coming up in the next year – will the crystal ball be accurate – or not?
Crank up the Sonos, grab a coffee, pen and paper – you’ll find the latest podcast show here (Link), which is open access for anyone who wants to listen.
B) Reader Q&A Mailbag: we tackle your latest tough questions that are top of mind and offer insights on the hot topics people want to know about.
We have a broad range of topics to cover today including:
- The battle for PD-1 sales
- What are the IO bottlenecks where we can expect to see new research focus
- Sanofi-Medivation bid
- AbbVie snapping up StemcentRx
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New Orleans – Tuesday is the last full day of the 2016 annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), and the last day of our #AACR16 rolling blog posts.
What struck me at this meeting has been the explosion in cancer immunotherapy research. It’s worth remembering that where we are today is the result of pioneering work done over the last 15 years by researchers, many of whom struggled for funding and recognition as they laid the foundation for where we are today.
Tomorrow, the Vice President of the United States, Joe Biden, will fly in to address the closing plenary session of the meeting. Mr Biden’s remarks will be live streamed by AACR (link to information).
There’s a lot happening at AACR today and tomorrow; and as conference die-hards we’ll be here to the end in order to capture some really interesting data that’s on the program.
Subscribers can login to read our AACR Day 4 commentary or you can purchase access.
New Orleans – it’s Day 3, Monday, at the 2016 annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR). Attending AACR for the first time can be a daunting prospect, with a full program of activities from dawn to dusk.
For those of who don’t regularly go to large medical meetings, it’s all too easy to forget the sheer scale of the event and how mach walking is involved up and down long corridors – it’s easy to clock up 15,000+ steps on your Fitbit!
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New Orleans – the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) starts in earnest today with a full program of educational sessions presented by leading experts in different fields.
There’s a lot going on at AACR, with many sessions in parallel, so always remember the “law of two feet” – if the session you are in isn’t interesting, what you expected or isn’t meeting your needs – get up and go to another one!
Starting today and through Tuesday will be posting a daily blog with commentary around the sessions we attend and the people we speak to. It won’t be real-time, but to the extent possible we’ll be providing updates during the day.
It kills us to do semi-live posts from conferences, but they’re popular with subscribers, many of whom enjoy reading top-line commentary during the meeting, then our in-depth pieces later.
If you’d like to join the club of readers who enjoy access to our content, much of which by definition is exclusive – we don’t think anybody else does what we do or talks to as many thought leaders….
The good news is that a quarterly subscription will also cover you for ASCO 2016 in Chicago. If you’d like to support our conference coverage, you can purchase access. Subscribers can login to read more.
It’s Day 6 of our Countdown to the AACR 2016 annual meeting in New Orleans. We’re at the halfway, 6 posts written and 6 more to go! Then it will be daily Live blogs from the meeting.
There’s a lot of cancer immunotherapy at AACR this year, so after yesterday’s post on GITR we’re continuing our mini-series with a look at another immune agonist.
Today, we’re moving onto OX40 (CD134) as a novel immuno-target. Regular readers will know that we’ve been following this target for some time.
Immune agonists such as GITR, OX40, CD40, CD27 and 4-1BB help to rev up T cells. As Dr Tom Gajewski (Chicago) told us last year, in an interview published on the blog and excerpted in Episode 6 of the Novel Targets Podcast: Stepping on the Gas:
…there are inhibitory receptors on activated T cells that are involved with shutting immune responses down. There are also activating receptors that help to rev up those T cells. You might question whether you can push an activator and block an inhibitor, and maybe get a good anti-tumor response going as well.
When we drive a car, we both lift our foot off the break and we step on the accelerator. We have really beautiful data in animals that that this is exactly the case, that if you hit one of those strong positive regulators, and block just one of the negative regulators, you can have complete disappearance of the tumors in mice.
Several of those positive agonistic antibodies against costimulatory receptors are in the clinic. One of them is anti-OX40 that a couple of groups have in the clinic. We’re working with Genentech, that has one of those agents in phase I.
What does the OX40 competitive landscape look like?
In those post we’ve provided commentary on some of the new products in development from companies and highlighted a surprising number of abstracts that you’ll want to watch out for at AACR 2016 if you’re on the cancer immunotherapy track.
Subscribers can login to read today’s Road to AACR 2016 post.
New Orleans Jazz
Most of the abstracts for the 2016 annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research (Twitter #AACR16) in New Orleans are now available online, which raises the intriguing question:
What are the top 10 abstracts at AACR 2016?
If you’re a subscriber, take a moment to think which ones would be on your list, BEFORE you read this post.
Rather than give chapter and verse on a long raft of abstracts, in this second preview post I’ve chosen to focus on a few interesting, intriguing or important issues. Clearly, everyone will have their own way of defining a top 10 list, never mind choosing them! I do hope this starts a debate in your group, it’s always cool discussing science, after all. Which ones would you choose and why?
What I wanted to do was highlight some of the critical scientific or clinical questions that I have written down in my little black book over the last year or so for which we need solid answers in order to move our understanding of the cancer research along. That list is very long and always seems to be getting longer! The good news is that we may have answers to some of them at AACR next month.
Here goes, in no particular order…
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