French biotech company Innate Pharma has formed a clinical trial collaboration with AstraZeneca’s research and development arm MedImmune to combine their immunotherapies in the Phase I/II STELLAR-001 clinical trial to treat patients suffering from certain solid tumours.
MedImmune’s durvalumab is an anti-PD-L1 immune checkpoint inhibitor, while Innate’s IPH5401 is an investigational anti-C5aR monoclonal antibody.
Both these cancer immunotherapies leverage immune system of the body to fight against cancer.
Durvalumab is designed to counter the immune-evading capability of a tumour by inhibiting PD-L1 interactions with PD-1 and CD80.
In preclinical studies, C5aR blockade was found to enhance immune-mediated destruction of tumours, as well as the efficacy of checkpoint inhibitors.
Phase I of the new trial is set to determine a recommended dose regimen of IPH5401 when given in conjunction with durvalumab, and Phase II portion will investigate the safety and efficacy of this combination therapy.
Under the non-exclusive agreement between, Innate will perform the trial and costs will be equally shared between the company and MedImmune.
Innate Pharma chief executive officer Mondher Mahjoubi said: “Our collaboration with MedImmune provides further evidence of Innate’s commitment to exploring the full combination potential of IPH5401 as we progress our immuno-oncology portfolio.
“We believe IPH5401 could become an important partner in PD-1/PD-L1 combination strategies.”
The firm is currently under a co-development and commercialisation agreement with AstraZeneca for humanised IgG4, monalizumab, being developed to target NKG2A receptors that are expressed on tumour infiltrating cytotoxic NK and CD8 T lymphocytes.