Our immune-oncology efforts and programs reside under:
Immune checkpoints are proteins involved with maintaining a balanced immune state, preventing over/under activation of immune signaling. Recent discoveries show that cancer cells modulate these immune checkpoints to evade the patient’s immune system, leading to uncontrolled cancer cell proliferation. Therapeutic attenuation of immune checkpoints can restore the natural immune response to tumors.
We are developing a diverse portfolio of first-in-class immune-checkpoint inhibitors and activators to treat a wide variety of oncology and immune diseases.
Pharmaceutical research on checkpoint inhibition by biologic drugs has dramatically expanded in recent years. Several biologics have gained FDA approval as checkpoint inhibitor drugs for use in multiple types of cancers and revolutionized cancer treatment
However, biological drugs have numerous limitations including cardiomyopathies, immune related adverse events, inability to access privileged sites (i.e. blood brain barrier), poor access to the tumor microenvironment, unmanageable pharmacokinetics not to mention costs. These challenges are an urgent call to develop small molecules that can overcome these shortcomings. However, many of these immune check points are difficult to develop potent drugs against. Our powerful platform has been successful at generating novel drug candidates that rival biologics in their potency yet are devoid of their limitations.
Certain metabolic components serve as critical checkpoints in immune homeostasis and controlling tumorigenesis. Numerous studies confirm that metabolic requirements for successful T-cell functionality in the tumor milieu are an important node for therapeutic intervention, including the activation, differentiation, and migration of immune cells. While immuno-metabolism is an emerging field, we are rationally designing drugs that are profoundly selective with no off-target effects.