Fate Therapeutics (FATE) just posted first quarter 2020 highlights, including:
“We are encouraged by the resilience of our employees, our clinical trial investigators and participating patients, and our collaboration partners in the face of the challenge posed by the global pandemic. Like others, we have been affected by COVID-19, which has impacted clinical site initiation, slowed the cadence of new patient enrollment, and changed how we conduct our day-to-day business,” said Scott Wolchko, President and CEO of FATE.
“Nevertheless, we have continued to enroll patients across our three Phase 1 clinical programs, expanded the clinical footprint of our FT596 program into relapse prevention following autologous HSCT, and submitted our IND application to the FDA for FT538, the first-ever CRISPR-edited, iPSC-derived cell therapy, in multiple myeloma,” he added.
“Additionally, we entered into a transformative collaboration with Janssen that leverages our iPSC product platform and Janssen’s proprietary tumor-targeting antigen binders to develop novel CAR NK and CAR T-Cell product candidates for hematologic malignancies and solid tumors, supporting our fundamental goal of bringing off-the-shelf, iPSC-derived cell-based cancer immunotherapies to patients.”
Other top accomplishments in the quarter included:
- First patient treated with FT596 monotherapy for advanced diffuse large B-cell lymphoma
- Second FT596 IND application allowed by FDA for relapse prevention after autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplant (HSCT)
- FT500 Phase 1 dose-escalation stage successfully completed for advanced solid tumors
- FT516 clinical investigation expanded to solid tumors
- IND application submitted for FT538 – the first CRISPR-edited, iPSC-derived cellular immunotherapy
- FT516 investigator-initiated clinical trial for COVID-19 opened for enrollment
In addition, the company announced the presentation of a new off-the-shelf, iPSC-derived, chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-targeted cell-based cancer immunotherapy program at the American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy (ASGCT) 23rd Annual Meeting.
The new preclinical program targets MHC class I related proteins A (MICA) and B (MICB), and is supported by an exclusive license from the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute to intellectual property covering novel antibody fragments binding MICA/B for iPSC-derived cellular therapeutics. MICA and MICB are stress proteins that are selectively expressed at high levels on many solid tumors, says the company.
Fate Also Landed a Major Partner
Just the other week, it secured a $3 billion deal with Janssen Biotech, Inc, one of the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson to develop four cancer treatments.
These treatments belong to a class known as immuno-oncology drugs, which help teach the immune system how to identify hidden cancer cells. Not only does this deal now validate Fate Therapeutics technology, notes Investor’s Business Daily, it removes cash flow concerns, and now adds another four potential cancer treatments for the company.
Ian Cooper’s Personal Position in FATE: None