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Biomunex and Institut Curie pursue strategic collaboration for development of disruptive non-conventional T cell redirection approach to treating cancer

  • Collaboration is based on Biomunex’ next generation bi- and multi-specific antibody BiXAb® technology platform with a promising new target identified on non-conventional T cells to develop disruptive immunotherapeutic approach to treating cancer 
  • Partners aim to develop a new drug candidate to address unmet medical needs in patients with hematological malignancies and solid tumors, with objective of starting clinical trials within the next 24 months
  • An international patent application has been filed to cover any tumor associated antigen, making it a unique immunotherapy approach

Paris, France and Cambridge, MA, USA, February 7, 2022 – Biomunex Pharmaceuticals, a biopharmaceutical company that develops cutting-edge immunotherapy through the discovery and development of bi- and multi-specific antibodies, and Institut Curie, France’s leading cancer center, today announce a new chapter in their strategic research collaboration. Together they will work on the development of a breakthrough immunotherapy drug candidate for the treatment of hematological malignancies and solid tumors, based on Biomunex’ unique proprietary BiXAb technology.

The immune cell redirection approach has led to significant advances in cancer immunotherapy. More than 80 bispecific antibodies based on this approach are currently in development, most using CD3-based T-cell redirection. This promising technique is widely studied as it can be applied to a wide variety of cancer types. However, this approach still has many limitations, such as cytokine release syndrome, one of the major side effects of this therapy, dose-limiting toxicity and minimal clinical activity in solid tumors. 

In recent years, Biomunex and Institut Curie have signed two partnerships to overcome those limitations. They evaluated the potential of a unique sub-population of non-conventional T cells to be redirected to kill cancer cells, based on the Biomunex’ unique bi- and multi-specific antibody technology platform, BiXAb. Indeed, the ‘Plug-and-Play’ BiXAb technology platform, for which deals were established with Sanofi in 2019 and Onward Therapeutics in 2021, applied to the non-conventional T cell redirection approach, paves the way for safer and more efficacious disruptive immunotherapeutics.

This collaboration between Biomunex and Institut Curie’s Cancer Immunotherapy Center (INSERM, Institut Curie) led by Dr. Sebastian Amigorena, and Institut Curie’s Clinical Immunology Laboratory led by Dr. Olivier Lantz, resulted in the highlighting of a novel unique therapeutic approach, which led to the international filing of a patent application, covering the first development candidate but also BiXAbs recognizing any other tumor associated antigen, enabling the extension of the approach to many hematological malignancies and solid tumors. The continuation of the collaboration will allow Biomunex and Institut Curie to better understand the first drug candidate mechanism of action, with the objective of entering clinical development within the next 24 months for this first candidate.

Dr. Pierre-Emmanuel Gerard, CEO and founder of Biomunex, said: “Our next generation BiXAb platform and expert know-how in anticancer immunotherapy, together with the expertise in T cell biology of the Institut Curie team, provide great synergistic opportunities in the development of innovative anticancer immunotherapeutics for patients. We are thrilled to pursue this historical collaboration with Institut Curie using our BiXAb platform, to discover new immunotherapies in oncology.” 

“Biomunex’ best-in-class platform will certainly allow us to uncover the full potential of this non-conventional T cell redirection approach and translate it into new immunotherapeutic treatments,” said Dr. Sebastian Amigorena and Dr Olivier Lantz. “The results of the in vitro and in vivo experiments so far have demonstrated the high potential and brought the Proof of Concept of this novel T cell redirection approach. This is an important step in the progression of innovative cancer treatments for patients with unmet medical needs.”

The disruptive innovation brought by this unique non-conventional T cell redirection approach was also demonstrated as this received close to €3 million ($3.5M) in grants from the French government as part of the ‘Grand Défi Biomédicament’ scheme, which was the most significant grant awarded under the scheme in November 2021. 


About Institut Curie

Institut Curie, France’s leading cancer center, combines an internationally-renowned research center with a cutting-edge hospital group that treats all types of cancer, including the rarest. Founded in 1909 by Marie Curie, Institut Curie employs 3,700 researchers, physicians, and health professionals across three sites (Paris, Saint-Cloud and Orsay), working on its three missions: treatment, research, and teaching. A private foundation with public utility status, Institut Curie is authorized to receive donations and legacies, and thanks to the support of its donors, is able to make discoveries more quickly, improving treatments and quality of life for patients.

Since 2011, Institut Curie is certified “Institut Carnot Curie Cancer”. The Carnot label is a label of excellence granted to academic research structures with proven high quality and involvement in partnership research. Curie Cancer offers industrial partners the opportunity to set up research collaborations, benefiting from the expertise of Institut Curie teams, for the development of innovative therapeutic solutions against cancers from the therapeutic target to clinical validation.

About Biomunex 

Biomunex Pharmaceuticals is a French biopharmaceutical company, based in Paris, France, and Cambridge, MA, USA, with seasoned and international leadership team and boards. Biomunex is discovering and developping differentiated immunotherapeutic approaches based on data driven biology, to address the unmet medical needs in oncology. Biomunex has created and developed a “plug and play” next-generation and robust bi- and multi-specific antibody technology platform, BiXAb, thanks to a proprietary computational modelling approach. The BiXAb platform that enables to generate any bi- and multi-specific antibodies from any pair of monoclonals, in a straightforward, fast (less than 2 months) and cost-effective fashion, has been validated by out-licensing and collaboration deals with pharmaceutical companies.

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Last Updated: 07-Feb-2022