December 1, 2022

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AstraZeneca and Inovio terminate DNA vaccine for HPV-related cancers!



AstraZeneca and Inovio terminate DNA vaccine for HPV-related cancers!

AstraZeneca and Inovio terminate the development project of the DNA vaccine MEDI0457 (INO-3112) for the treatment of HPV-related cancers!

Inovio Pharma is the world’s leading developer of DNA drugs and is using its optimized plasmid design and delivery technology to develop DNA drugs to potentially treat and prevent diseases related to human papillomavirus (HPV), cancer and infectious diseases.

In August of this year, the company’s COVID-19 DNA vaccine product ZyCoV-D was granted an emergency use authorization (EUA) in India, which is the first regulatory license for a DNA vaccine worldwide.

The principle of DNA vaccines is to design and synthesize DNA plasmids carrying specific antigen sequences, transcribed into mRNA in human cells, and then translated into proteins to activate the human immune system. In addition to DNA vaccines, Inovio is also developing DNA-based tumor immunotherapy.

Recently, in a filing file submitted to the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Inovio disclosed that MedImmune, AstraZeneca’s global biologics research and development department, has issued a notice to Inovio to terminate the DNA cancer vaccine INO-3112/ The development project of MEDI0457.

The two parties signed a DNA cancer vaccine cooperation agreement on August 7, 2015. Due to the termination of the INO-3112/MEDI0457 development project, this cooperation agreement has all been terminated.

INO-3112/MEDI0457 is an immunotherapy for cancers caused by HPV types 16 and 18. According to the previous cooperation agreement, MedImmune has obtained the exclusive license rights for INO-3112 immunotherapy (renamed MEDI0457) and has the right to license these rights again.

The cooperation agreement allows MedImmune to terminate the agreement at any time based on the project, product and/or country.

After the termination of the cooperation agreement, Inovio will regain the rights of INO-3112 and will no longer be entitled to collect future potential milestone payments or royalties under the cooperation agreement.

The company will no longer have the right to seek compensation from MedImmune for any development activities. Both parties will continue to have the right to jointly release work related to this candidate product.

Currently, MedImmune is conducting a phase 2 clinical trial of MEDI0457 in patients with head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). MedImmune has completed the final data interception of the trial and plans to complete the clinical research report before the end of 2022.

Inovio hopes that MedImmune will continue to sponsor the study until the study is terminated. MedImmune will continue to provide funding for an externally sponsored MID0457 study conducted by the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center until the study is completed.

AstraZeneca and Inovio terminate DNA vaccine for HPV-related cancers!DNA drugs

MEDI0457 (VGX-3100 + IL-12) was developed to treat cancers caused by HPV types 16 and 18. These two high-risk HPV viruses can cause more than 70% of cervical precancerous lesions and cancers. MEDI0457 targets E6 and E7 oncogenes, which are potentially oncogenic genes expressed by HPV types 16 and 18.

MEDI0457 is a DNA-based cancer vaccine with 2 main components and is produced using Inovio’s proprietary SynCon technology. These components are: (1) VGX-3100, a DNA plasmid containing modified sequences of E6 and E7; (2) INO-9012, a DNA plasmid containing sequences of the immune activator IL-12.

MEDI0457 is injected into the patient’s muscles and enters the cells after electroporation with Inovio’s Cellectra delivery device. When E6 and E7 are expressed from VGX-3100, the immune system recognizes these proteins as antigens or foreign substances associated with infection or disease. This triggers the production of cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTL) or “killer” T cells.

CTL is a type of immune cell that can recognize and destroy cells expressing specific antigens, in this case, HPV-infected tumor cells. The expression of IL-12 will enhance the immune response produced by VGX-3100, because it can stimulate the production of CTL and increase the possibility of tumor cell death.

According to Inovio’s pipeline information, MEDI0457 is in phase 2 clinical development for the treatment of HPV-related cancers, including head and neck cancer, and cancers of the cervix, anus, penis, and vulva.

Reference:

AstraZeneca unit terminates cancer vaccine program with Inovio

(source:internet, reference only)


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