Celdara Medical, LLC announced receipt of a clinical milestone payment from partner Celyad, SA (NASDAQ: CYAD). This milestone payment is related to the advancement of the OnCyte product candidate CM-CS1, currently in Phase I clinical development (NCT02203825) at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. OnCyte was acquired by Celyad from Celdara Medical in January of 2015, and is based on the work of Prof. Charles Sentman of Dartmouth College’s Geisel School of Medicine.
The Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) technology developed by OnCyte uses human Natural Killer cell (NK cell) receptors which, unlike traditional CAR technologies, have the potential to target a broad range of liquid and solid cancers via a human natural receptor that targets ligands present on most tumor types. Recognized by experts as one of the most exciting fields in the treatment of cancer, immuno-oncology, and more specifically CAR T cell therapies, represent an innovative approach to treat cancers by leveraging the body’s own immune system.
OnCyte’s most advanced CAR T cell drug candidate, CM-CS1, uses a specific, human, Natural Killer cell receptor called NKG2D that targets tumor antigens expressed in most liquid and solid cancers. CM-CS1 has an active Investigational New Drug (IND) filing with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for a Phase I clinical trial in hematologic malignancies, and which began enrolling patients in Q2 of 2015. In addition to CM-CS1, OnCyte has two CAR T-Cell programs targeting other cancer cell antigens in preclinical development, as well as an allogeneic T cell platform, which enables almost any CAR T-Cell therapy to be made into an “off-the-shelf” product.
Dr. Jake Reder, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Celdara Medical, remarked: “It is both professionally and personally gratifying to reach this milestone in collaboration with the teams at Celyad, Dartmouth, and the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. Each milestone takes us a step closer to our shared goal of a better and more broadly applicable therapy for cancer. I can’t think of a better way to start the year, and we all look forward to advancing CM-CS1 further into the clinic.”
Research reported in this press release was supported by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (including 5R44HL099217) and the National Cancer Institute (including 1R43CA144133) of the National Institutes of Health (USA). The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.
About Celdara Medical
Celdara Medical was founded by Drs. Jake Reder and Michael Fanger in 2008, and is headquartered at the Dartmouth Regional Technology Center (DRTC) in Lebanon, New Hampshire, U.S.A. Celdara Medical builds academic and early-stage innovations into high-potential medical companies, identifying discoveries of exceptional value at the earliest stages and moving them toward the market.