Collaboration with Richard Childs, M.D., yields potentially first-ever antibodies targeting human endogenous retrovirus associated with renal cell carcinoma
SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., and SUZHOU, China, Jan. 12, 2021 – Adagene, Inc., a platform-driven, clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company with precision antibody engineering, discovery and development capabilities, today announced the successful completion of its component of the collaboration with Richard Childs, M.D., Chief of the Laboratory of Transplantation Immunotherapy at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). As a result of the collaboration, Adagene discovered antibodies that Dr. Child’s laboratory has turned into a CAR-T cell therapy candidate for the potential treatment of renal cell carcinoma, the most common type of kidney cancer in adults, according to Frost & Sullivan.
Human endogenous retroviruses (HERVs), remnants of ancient germ-line infections with exogenous retroviruses, are estimated to comprise up to 8% of the human genome. A growing number of HERV genes and proteins have been found to be expressed in different cancers, and they might represent new targets for tumor immunotherapy.
“The novel antibodies were co-discovered and tested by Adagene and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute have enabled us to potentially develop the first CAR-T cell therapy candidate targeting a human endogenous retrovirus expressed in the majority of clear cell kidney tumors,” said Dr. Childs. “This is an encouraging development that builds on decades of research in our quest to find ways to adapt and enhance immune cells to target and kill even the most aggressive cancers. I look forward to the evaluation and hopefully the development of this novel CAR-T cell and other antibody-based therapies in clinical trials.”
The NIH will lead and be responsible for the manufacturing and clinical development of the CAR-T cell therapy candidate.
“Adagene is honored to have worked with Dr. Childs and his laboratory on this novel family of HERV as potential target for tumor immunotherapy,” said Peter Luo, Ph.D., Co-founder, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of Adagene. “Using our NEObody™ technology, we identified novel antibodies against HERV expressed targets in renal cell carcinoma, which to our knowledge has never before been accomplished. We look forward to the advancement of the first-in-class CAR-T cell therapy Dr. Childs’ laboratory has pioneered based on antibodies discovered at Adagene. In the meantime, Adagene continues to make progresses on its pipeline of programs developed with NEObody™ and SAFEbody™ technologies, to address unmet medical needs.”
NEObody™ is part of Adagene’s Dynamic Precision Library (DPL) platform, which combines computational biology and synthetic biology to enable the selection of antibody candidates with novel epitopes, robust CMC profiles and desired safety and efficacy attributes for downstream development.
Adagene, Inc. is a platform-driven, clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company committed to transforming the discovery and development of novel antibody-based cancer immunotherapies. Adagene combines computational biology and artificial intelligence to design novel antibodies that address unmet patient needs. Its proprietary pipeline is comprised of novel immunotherapy programs. Adagene has forged strategic collaborations with reputable global partners that leverage its technology in multiple approaches at the vanguard of science.
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