Ankyra Therapeutics, a biotech company developing targeted immune activating agents for the treatment of cancer, today announced that is has entered into a strategic collaboration with the Lung Cancer Initiative (LCI) at Johnson & Johnson*. The collaboration will focus on the advancement of Ankyra’s lead product candidate, ANK-101, an IL-12-based locally administered immunotherapy, as a potential treatment for lung cancer. Ankyra is currently advancing ANK-101 through Investigational New Drug (IND) enabling studies for the treatment of solid tumors and plans to submit an IND to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in the third quarter of 2023.
Under the terms of the agreement, Ankyra together with LCI scientists will evaluate ANK-101 in a Phase 1b clinical trial. Ankyra has received an upfront payment and is eligible for additional undisclosed clinical milestone payments.
“We are delighted to enter this collaboration in our mission to bring forward new, impactful treatments for cancer,” said Howard Kaufman, M.D., president and chief executive officer. “We have designed our ANK-101 immunotherapy candidate to increase the therapeutic window of IL-12, a potent cytokine, while also aiming to ensure patient tolerability. Patients with lung cancer need new effective treatments with fewer side effects, and we hope to meet this need in the future.”
About Ankyra Therapeutics
Ankyra Therapeutics is a biotechnology company developing a novel approach to treating cancer, designed to expand the therapeutic window of cytokine drugs. Cytokine treatments have shown to be effective in treating cancer, but systemic dosing is limited by broad immune activation and toxicity. Using its proprietary Anchored Immunotherapy Platform, Ankyra has developed methods to localize cytokines specifically and persistently in tumor tissue, creating intense hot spots of inflammation that awaken an anti-tumor immune response. Using its platform, the company is building a pipeline of therapeutics designed to provide prolonged immune activation and potent local and systemic immunity with reduced systemic toxicity. For more information, please visit www.ankyratx.com.
*Johnson & Johnson Enterprise Innovation Inc. is the legal entity to the agreement.
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