Nectin Therapeutics Announces $ 5.4 Million Investment From Cancer Focus Fund to Support Phase 1 Study of First-Class Anti-PVR Targeted Immunotherapy

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JERUSALEM And HOUSTON, March 7, 2022 / PRNewswire / – Nectin Therapeutics Ltd., (Nectin) a biotech company developing novel targeted immunotherapies that address resistance to approved immuno-oncology treatments and Cancer Focus Fund, LP, a unique investment fund created in partnership with The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center (MD Anderson) to provide funding and clinical expertise to promote promising cancer therapies, today announced an investment from the Cancer Focus Fund of $ 5.4 million to fund a phase 1 clinical trial of Nectin’s PVR blocker, NTX1088, in cancer patients with locally advanced and metastatic solid tumors.

NTX1088 is a high affinity monoclonal antibody directed against PVR, an immune checkpoint ligand. NTX1088 blocks the signaling of the TIGIT and CD96 immune checkpoint receptors, restoring the expression and immune function of DNAM1 (CD226), resulting in increased antitumor immune effects from activated T cells and natural killer (NK) cells in the tumor microenvironment. PVR is overexpressed in many solid tumors in various cancer indications, including lung, colorectal, liver, ovary, breast, adrenal, pancreatic, uterine, head and neck, gastric and esophageal. High PVR expression is associated with poor prognosis and resistance to PD1 block, making PVR an attractive therapeutic target for new immuno-oncological therapies, both as monotherapy and in combination with PD1 blockers.

The Cancer Focus Fund investment will support a Phase 1 clinical trial at MD Anderson evaluating NTX1088 in the treatment of locally advanced and metastatic solid cancers. Cancer Focus Fund is receiving a combination of equity and future payments from Nectin based on the achievement of certain clinical and commercial milestones.

“Cancer Focus Fund is committed to promoting the clinical development of new cancer therapies with the potential to have a significant impact on patients,” he said. Ross Barrett, one of the founders and Managing Partner of the Cancer Focus Fund. “Despite their initial promise, most cancer patients do not respond, or eventually acquire resistance, to current immunotherapies. NTX1088 has a unique mechanism of action that works in three ways to suppress the immune inhibitory effects of tumors. while also promoting tumor anti-activity We are delighted to help fund this first human clinical trial at MD Anderson, our collaborator in conducting clinical trials funded by the Cancer Focus Fund. “

The Phase 1 study is an open-label study in 90 patients that will be conducted in two phases: a dose escalation phase and an expansion phase. NTX1088 will be studied as a single agent and in combination with a PD1 blocker. The primary objectives of the dose escalation phase are to assess safety and tolerability and to select a safe and effective recommended dose. In the expansion phase of the study, the safety and tolerability of NTX1088 will be further evaluated, along with initial efficacy measures and exploratory evaluations of pharmacodynamic and predictive biomarkers, which will help stratify patients as they proceed. Sarina A. Piha-PaulMD, Associate Professor in the Department of Investigational Cancer Therapeutics at MD Anderson, will serve as Principal Investigator.

“Nectin Therapeutics is developing a portfolio of innovative anticancer compounds targeting highly differentiated targets within the immune checkpoint nectin family,” he said. Fabiano Tenenbaum, CEO of Nectin Therapeutics. “The imminent start of our first human clinical trial is a milestone for the company. We welcome financial support from the Cancer Focus Fund and MD Anderson’s clinical experience in facilitating the Phase 1 study for this new. promising approach to help patients mount an effective immune response to their cancer. “

The Phase 1 study is expected to begin enrolling patients around mid-2022.

About NTX1088
NTX1088 is a first-class monoclonal antibody directed against a key immune checkpoint, PVR, also known as CD155. NTX1088 has a triple mechanism of action. It binds to PVR with high affinity and blocks its interactions with TIGIT and CD96, preventing their immune-inhibitory signaling. NTX1088 also blocks the interaction between PVR and DNAM1, also known as CD226, a molecule involved in the activation of anticancer T lymphocytes and NK lymphocytes. By preventing DNAM1 internalization and degradation, NTX1088 leads to the restoration of DNAM1 expression on the surface of immune cells and results in robust antitumor activity. NTX1088 demonstrated superior antitumor activity compared to approved and experimental immune checkpoint inhibitors in preclinical models and revealed a favorable safety profile in non-human primates.

Speaking of therapeutic nectin
Nectin Therapeutics is a biotechnology company dedicated to transforming the lives of cancer patients by leveraging unique insights into the path of nectin to develop the next generation of immuno-oncology (IO) therapies. Its differentiated therapies have the potential to set new standards of efficacy and patient response rates in various difficult-to-treat cancers. Nectin’s technology addresses the major escape mechanisms of current IO therapies through a diverse pipeline of novel monoclonal antibodies and antibody-drug conjugates. It has a world-class science and management team with deep experience in cancer drug development and a successful track record in building biotech companies and developing innovative therapies. Nectin Therapeutics is a privately held, venture-backed company funded by aMoon Fund, Peregrine Ventures, Integra Holdings and Cancer Focus Fund.

About Cancer Focus Fund
The Cancer Focus Fund LP is a unique investment fund created in partnership with The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. The fund provides investment support to promote promising cancer therapies that are close to human trials or are in early clinical development, as well as the clinical trial experience and infrastructure of MD Anderson and strategic partners Ochsner Health System Precision Cancer Therapies Program New Orleans and the LSU Feist Weiller Cancer Center Shreveport. The Fund’s objective is to leverage this unique combination to provide investors with superior risk-adjusted returns. In partnership with partner MD Anderson, the Cancer Focus Fund provides both capital and translational research expertise with the goal of accelerating the development of new cancer therapies that translate into better patient outcomes while generating investor returns.

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center’s relationship with the Cancer Focus Fund, and all research conducted at MD Anderson related to the Cancer Focus Fund, has been identified as an institutional financial conflict of interest by the MD Institutional Conflict of Interest Committee Anderson and therefore is managed under an institutional conflict of interest management and monitoring plan.


Therapeutic Nectin

Cancer Focus Fund

MD Anderson





Fabiano Tenenbaum

Ross Barrett

Barbara Lindheim

Clayton Boldt

[email protected]

Managing partner

BLL Partners / Cancer Attention Fund

Public relations

+1 201 218-1774

[email protected]

[email protected]

MD Anderson

+1 917 355-9234

[email protected]

+1 713 792-9518

SOURCE Cancer Focus Fund; Therapeutic Nectin


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