Trio Pharmaceuticals, Aji Bio-Pharma to co-develop antibody drug conjugates

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Trio Pharmaceuticals and Ajinomoto Bio-Pharma Services (Aji Bio-Pharma) have entered into a development collaboration agreement to assess AJICAP, a site-specific conjugation technology offered by the latter for the development of dual action antibody drug conjugates TRIObody Drug Conjugates (TDCs).

Aji Bio-Pharma is a provider of biopharmaceutical contract development and manufacturing services, while Trio Pharmaceuticals is a cancer therapeutics company.

By using the AJICAP technology, a cytotoxic payload will be conjugated to Trio Pharmaceuticals lead oncology candidate with the company assessing the functionality of the TDC.

Trio Pharmaceuticals’ dual action TDC is said to use targeted payload delivery to prevent tumor growth and also immunosuppression. By producing a less immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment, TDC is said to improve activation of tumor-specific immune effector cells further enabling the destruction of cancer cells.

Trio Pharmaceuticals, Aji Bio-Pharma to co-develop antibody drug conjugates

Trio Pharmaceuticals, Aji Bio-Pharma to co-develop antibody drug conjugates. Image courtesy of Gerd Altmann from Pixabay.

Dr. Brian Mendelsohn – Director, Process Development and Technology Transfer at Aji Bio-Pharma said: “AJICAP was developed to create novel ADCs with therapeutic window enhancements, while shortening the development timeline. We are excited to collaborate with TRIO as they advance TDC technology, developing a new class of ADCs. This collaboration marks a new avenue of development in the ADC field.”

AJICAP is claimed to be a strong site-specific conjugation technology that is compatible with varied antibody modalities. The advantage of the technology is said to be its “off-the-shelf” feature, which enables any antibody drug at any stage of development to be conjugated to drug-payloads of choice without the necessity of altering the sequence. In contrast to the conventional Cys-maleimide and Lys-succinimide conjugation technologies, AJICAP conjugation is claimed to be strong and produces ADCs with high yields.

Dr. Shiva Bhowmik – Founder and CEO of Trio Pharmaceuticals said: “We are very excited to collaborate with Aji Bio-Pharma for evaluating AJICAP to develop our proprietary dual action TDC. The AJICAP conjugation technology marks a new beginning in the ADC field, allowing generation of ADCs with site-specific conjugation without change in antibody sequence, a rate-limiting step in the development of site-specific ADCs.

“Setting an early collaboration with Aji Bio-Pharma will ease our cGMP plans for clinical development.”

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