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ISA Pharmaceuticals Receives Fast Track Designation for Lead Product ISA101b

ISA Pharmaceuticals Receives Fast Track Designation for Lead Product ISA101b

Fast Track designation for the treatment of recurrent and metastatic HPV16-positive oropharyngeal cancer to improve survival and delay progression


Oegstgeest, The Netherlands, September 14th, 2021 – ISA Pharmaceuticals B.V., a clinical stage biotech company developing immunotherapies to treat cancers and infectious diseases, announces that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted Fast Track designation to its lead product ISA101b, for the treatment of recurrent and metastatic Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) 16 positive oropharyngeal cancer (OPC).

The Fast Track process is designed to facilitate the development of investigational treatments that demonstrate the potential to address unmet medical needs in serious or life-threatening conditions. Programs with Fast Track designation can benefit from early and frequent communication with the FDA throughout the entire drug development and review process and marketing application.

Leon Hooftman, Chief Medical Officer of ISA Pharmaceuticals commented: “Recurrent and metastatic HPV16 positive OPC is a form of head-and-neck cancer with a high unmet medical need. The Fast Track designation for ISA101b underlines the potential benefit of this immunotherapy for patients suffering from this disease.” Last week ISA Pharmaceuticals announced that the first patient has been dosed in a new phase 2 study in this indication.

ISA101b induces strong and specific immune responses to HPV16 virus proteins, and (re-)establishes a powerful T-cell immune response against virus infected and/or cancerous cells and tissues. It is using ISA’s proprietary Synthetic Long Peptide (SLP®) technology. ISA101b is studied in HPV16 positive cancers in combination with Libtayo® (cemiplimab) in three phase 2 clinical trials under a strategic collaboration with Regeneron. Libtayo is an anti-PD-1 antibody that is being jointly developed by Regeneron and Sanofi.

Head-and-neck cancer can be a severe and life-threatening disease. More often than not it is diagnosed in middle aged adults, and once these cancers progress to advanced stages median survival times are short. HPV16 is a major cause of head-and-neck cancer.

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Last Updated: 14-Sep-2021