Seattle Genetics and Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) have entered into a clinical trial collaboration agreement to evaluate the investigational combination of Adcetris and Opdivo in two planned Phase I/II clinical trials.
Adcetris (brentuximab vedotin) is Seattle Genetics' antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) and Opdivo (nivolumab) is BMS' human programmed death receptor-1 (PD-1) blocking antibody.
The first trial is designed to evaluate this combination as a potential treatment option for patients with relapsed or refractory Hodgkin lymphoma (HL). The second trial will focus on patients with relapsed or refractory B-cell and T-cell non-Hodgkin lymphomas (NHL), including diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL).
Adcetris is an ADC directed to CD30, a defining marker of classical HL, which combines the targeting ability of a monoclonal antibody with the potency of a cell-killing agent, while Opdivo binds to the PD-1 receptor expressed on activated T-cells.
Seattle Genetics president and chief executive officer Clay Siegall said: "This collaboration will expand our broad Adcetris clinical development programme towards our goal of improving outcomes for patients with Hodgkin lymphoma and other CD30-expressing malignancies.
"Ultimately, our vision is to advance the treatment of cancer by exploring more targeted treatment approaches that result in enhanced activity, reduced toxicities and improved long-term results for patients.
"We look forward to working with Bristol-Myers Squibb to define the activity and tolerability of adding Opdivo to Adcetris, and informing this potential treatment strategy in haematologic malignancies."
The two trials are scheduled to be initiated in 2015, with Seattle Genetics conducting the HL trial and BMS conducting the NHL trial.
Bristol-Myers Squibb senior vice-president and head of development Oncology Michael Giordano said: "Bristol-Myers Squibb continues to strengthen its broad development programme for Opdivo through collaborations that explore novel combination regimens in areas of serious unmet need.
"We are pleased to collaborate with Seattle Genetics on clinical research focused on haematologic malignancies."
Currently, Adcetris is approved in relapsed HL and systemic anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL) and is not approved to treat relapsed, transplant eligible HL or to treat other types of NHL, while Opdivo is currently not approved for the treatment of lymphoma.