Inovio Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: INO) announced today that as part of its clinical collaboration agreement with Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy (PICI) and the Cancer Research Institute (CRI), Inovio’s prostate cancer immunotherapy INO-5151 will be combined with an immune modulator (CDX-301, FLT3 ligand, a dendritic cell mobilizer) and a PD-1 checkpoint inhibitor (nivolumab) targeting metastatic castration resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC) in a PICI sponsored platform study.
This innovative combination trial is an open-label, non-randomized, exploratory platform study designed to assess the safety and antitumor activity of multiple immunotherapy based combinations in participants with mCRPC who have received prior secondary androgen inhibition. Evaluating biomarkers of immune activity and clinical outcomes using a multi-omic, multi-parameter approach is an important aspect of the study. INO-5151 is a combined formulation of INO-5150 (with SynCon® antigens encoding for PSA and PSMA) and INO-9012 (DNA vector expressing interleukin 12). Inovio’s immunotherapy is one arm (Cohort C) of this broad PICI-supported study which is a multi-arm, multi-stage platform design (called PORTER Study: ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT03835533).
Dr. J. Joseph Kim, Inovio’s President and CEO, said, “Inovio is pleased that PICI selected our novel DNA-based immunotherapies to join in this unique combination trial targeting a major unmet medical need. This study demonstrates how Inovio is working with top cancer immunotherapy pioneers to investigate the potential significance of Inovio’s T cell activating immunotherapy in an innovative immuno-oncology combination regimen. Our collaboration with PICI allows us to leverage strategic partnerships with academia, non-profits, and pharma while working with PICI’s team of world-renowned experts from leading cancer centers at the forefront of cancer research.”
Metastatic castration resistant prostate cancer, the lethal form of prostate cancer, has shown limited benefit from immune checkpoint inhibition as a monotherapy, with two randomized Phase 3 trials with ipilimumab failing to show a clinically meaningful survival benefit, and a large Phase 2 trial with pembrolizumab demonstrating a modest rate of objective responses.
Under the agreement, PICI will design and execute the clinical study, working in collaboration with its established network of the most pre-eminent clinical academic and industry cancer centers, and with funding support from CRI. Based on PICI’s novel approach to accelerating studies of cancer immunotherapies, Inovio will provide financial contributions if Inovio’s product(s) studied under the collaboration reaches the initiation of a Phase 3 study.