Monday, November 29, 2021
Celularity Inc., a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing placental-derived allogeneic cell therapies, today announced the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has cleared its Investigational New Drug (IND) application for the use of CYNK-101 in combination with standard chemotherapy, trastuzumab and pembrolizumab in patients with first-line locally advanced unresectable or metastatic HER2/neu positive gastric or gastroesophageal junction (G/GEJ) adenocarcinoma. CYNK-101 is an investigational genetically engineered natural killer (NK) cell therapy designed to enhance antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC) with approved and novel antibody therapeutics.
“Gastric cancer represents the fifth most common cancer worldwide, and in advanced stages of the disease, continues to be associated with less than desirable survival outcomes despite recent advances,” said Robert Hariri, M.D., Ph.D., Founder, Chairperson and Chief Executive Officer of Celularity. “By enhancing the innate ADCC activity of our placental-derived NK cells, we have developed a cellular therapy platform that holds promise to complement and synergize with a range of antibody treatment strategies across a variety of tumor types. Our goal is to combine the potential advantages of placental-derived cellular therapies, including enhanced persistence, proliferation and resistance to cell exhaustion, with approved treatment strategies,” Hariri said.
Andrew Pecora, M.D., President of Celularity, said, “Among patients with locally advanced unresectable or metastatic HER2/neu positive gastric or gastroesophageal junction adenocarcinoma, advances in patient outcomes have been achieved with the addition of trastuzumab, and more recently, pembrolizumab, to standard chemotherapy, leading to regulatory approval of this combination. We are now excited to begin assessing if our off-the-shelf allogeneic placental-derived NK cells that have been genetically modified to enhance ADCC and resist cleavage of CD16 can improve clinical outcomes when added to the current combination in this patient population.”
The Phase 1/2a open-label, non-randomized clinical trial is designed to evaluate the safety and preliminary efficacy of the combination treatment strategy.
Celularity’s lead therapeutic candidate based on its placental-derived genetically modified NK cell type is CYNK-101, an allogeneic, off-the-shelf human placental CD34+-derived NK cell product genetically modified to express high-affinity and cleavage-resistant CD16 (FCGRIIIA) variant to drive antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity. Currently CYNK-101 is being developed as a treatment in combination with standard chemotherapy, trastuzumab and pembrolizumab for HER2+ overexpressing gastric or gastroesophageal junction adenocarcinoma. The safety and efficacy of CYNK-101 have not been established, and CYNK-101 has not been approved for any use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration or any other analogous regulatory authority.
Celularity Inc. (Nasdaq: CELU) headquartered in Florham Park, N.J., is a clinical stage biotechnology company leading the next evolution in cellular medicine by developing allogeneic cryopreserved off-the-shelf placental-derived cell therapies, including therapeutic programs using unmodified natural killer (NK) cells, genetically modified NK cells, T-cells engineered with a CAR (CAR T-cells), and mesenchymal-like adherent stromal cells (ASCs). These therapeutic programs target indications in cancer, infectious and degenerative diseases. In addition, Celularity develops and manufactures innovative biomaterials also derived from the postpartum placenta. Celularity believes that by harnessing the placenta’s unique biology and ready availability, it can develop therapeutic solutions that address significant unmet global needs for effective, accessible, and affordable therapies.
To learn more, visit celularity.com.
This press release includes “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, as well as within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. All statements other than statements of historical facts are “forward-looking statements,” including those relating to future events. In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements by terminology such as “anticipate,” “believe,” “can,” “contemplate,” “continue,” “could,” “estimate,” “expect,” “forecast,” “intends,” “may,” “might,” “outlook,” “plan,” “possible,” “potential,” “predict,” “project,” “seek,” “should,” “strive,” “target,” “will,” “would” and the negative of terms like these or other comparable terminology, and other words or terms of similar meaning. The forward-looking statements in this press release include, statements regarding the Phase 1/2a clinical trial of CYNK-101, CYNK-101’s ability to improve clinical outcomes, CYNK-101’s ability to complement and synergize with a range of antibody treatment strategies, and the ability to combine the advantages of placental-derived cellular therapies with approved treatment strategies, among others. Many factors could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in these forward-looking statements, including but not limited to: the inherent risks in biotechnological development, including with respect to the development of novel cellular therapies, and the clinical trial and regulatory approval process; and risks associated with developments relating to Celularity’s competitors and industry, along with those risk factors set forth under the caption “Risk Factors” in Celularity’s proxy statement/prospectus filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on August 12, 2021 and other filings with the SEC . These risks and uncertainties may be amplified by the COVID- 19 pandemic. If any of these risks materialize or underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results could differ materially from the results implied by these forward-looking statements. There may be additional risks that Celularity does not presently know, or that Celularity currently believes are immaterial, that could also cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements. In addition, these forward-looking statements reflect Celularity’s current expectations, plans, or forecasts of future events and views as of the date of this communication. Subsequent events and developments could cause assessments to change. Accordingly, forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as representing Celularity’s views as of any subsequent date, and Celularity undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as may be required under applicable securities laws.