Curie-Cancer and GamaMabs Pharma renew partnership to develop antibody for ovarian cancer

19 December 2014

Curie-Cancer, the commercial arm of Institut Curie, and GamaMabs Pharma, a Toulouse-based cancer-drug company, have announced the extension of their partnership to develop the 3C23K antibody for the treatment of gynaecological cancers.

The results of previous work on the 3C23K antibody were presented to the Ovarian Cancer Research Symposium in Seattle in September 2014.

A new therapy for treating ovarian cancer

3C32K is a ‘low-fucose’ antibody that mobilizes tumour immune cells and targets the anti-Müllerian hormone receptor (AMHR2). The expression of this hormone is limited to adult ovaries (where it is expressed by the granulosa cells) and testicles (by the Leydig cells). AMHR2 is also expressed in the majority of gynaecological cancers, such as ovarian and endometrial cancers, being detected in around 65% of cases.

The 3C23K antibody is in preclinical development. Initial clinical trials are expected to start in 2015, following a round of fundraising scheduled for the first half of the year.

Models of mice were grafted with human tumour samples from the operating theatres at the Institut Curie. “To confirm initial observations in cellular models in vitro, we needed to have access to animal models that were highly representative of cancer in humans and to the expertise of researchers with first-rate knowledge of metastatic processes,” said Jean-François Prost, co-founder and scientific director of GamaMabs Pharma.

“Damien Salauze, director of Curie-Cancer, persuaded me of the value of a collaboration, given the Institut Curie’s large collection of mice with patient-derived tumour xenografts taken as samples in the operating theatre (PDX models). These are highly representative of the tumours seen in humans. The Institut Curie also allows us to combine these models with the development of tools for detecting AMHR2 in patient biopsies. This allows us to work closely with the biology of ovarian cancers.”

Source: Curie-Cancer

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