US biopharma company Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) has entered into a clinical collaboration with Compugen to evaluate the combination of its cancer drug Opdivo (nivolumab) with the Israeli genomics-based drug and diagnostic discovery company’s COM701 in advanced solid tumors.
COM701 is being investigated by Compugen as an anti-PVRIG antibody while the cancer drug Opdivo is a programmed death-1 (PD-1) immune checkpoint inhibitor.
The COM701 and Opdivo combination will be assessed in a currently held two-part phase 1 trial funded by Compugen and will be investigated in four tumor types – non-small cell lung, breast, ovarian and endometrial cancer.
Fouad Namouni – Head of Development, Oncology, Bristol-Myers Squibb, commenting on the COM701 Opdivo combination for advanced solid tumors, said: “Our goal is to evaluate whether the innovative combination of COM701 with Opdivo is safe and active in various tumor types. We look forward to building a strong collaboration with Compugen and addressing significant unmet needs.”
Through their clinical trial collaboration in advanced solid tumors, Bristol-Myers Squibb and Compugen are also looking at the potential future use of the COM701 Opdivo combination, including trials funded by the US biopharma company to investigate combined inhibition of PVRIG and TIGIT and other checkpoint mechanisms.
Bristol-Myers Squibb says that the clinical combination of multiple immune checkpoint inhibition is designed to evaluate the biological rationale of the PVRIG pathway and the synergistic activity shown across preclinical models.
Commenting on the COM701 Opdivo combination for advanced solid tumors, Anat Cohen-Dayag – President and CEO of Compugen said: “We are excited to have Bristol-Myers Squibb, the global leader in immuno-oncology, as a collaborator and strategic investor in Compugen.
“This collaboration gives Compugen access to Bristol-Myers Squibb’s Opdivo, enabling the evaluation of COM701 plus a PD-1 inhibitor and potentially accelerating the timeline for clinical testing of COM701 as part of other novel combinations.”
In conjunction with the clinical trial collaboration over the COM701 Opdivo combination for advanced solid tumors, Bristol-Myers Squibb will make a $12 million investment in Compugen.
Bristol-Myers Squibb cancer drug Opdivo functions by targeting the cellular pathway PD-1/PD-L1 proteins contained in the immune cells and various cancer cells of the body. Opdivo is claimed to restore an anti-tumor immune response, thereby giving the ability to the immune system fight cancer cells through the blocking of the PD-1/PD-L1 pathway.