Ziopharm Oncology Receives FDA Clearance of Rapid Personalized Manufacture of CD19-specific CAR-T

- October 1st, 2019

The company received clearance from the FDA for a Phase 1 clinical trial for patients with relapsed CD19 leukemias and lymphomas.

Ziopharm Oncology (NASDAQ:ZIOP) has announced that the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has cleared the company’s investigational new drug application for a Phase 1 clinical trial to evaluate CD19-specific CART-T in patients with relapsed CD19 leukemias and lymphomas.

The IND clearance builds upon the Company’s experience with two prior generations of immunotherapy trials using the Sleeping Beauty platform, which it believes is the most clinically-advanced non-viral approach to the genetic modification of T cells. With this third-generation trial, DNA from the Sleeping Beauty system is stably inserted into the genome of resting T cells to co-express a chimeric antigen receptor (CAR), membrane-bound IL-15 (mbIL15) and a safety switch, which is designed to reduce cost, simplify production, and preserve the therapeutic potential of the T cells.

“There are currently no effective treatment options for patients who relapse soon after allogeneic bone marrow transplantation (BMT), as evidenced by their low rate of remission and poor long-term survival. This trial expands the range of patients with CD19-expressing malignancies that can be treated using the RPM technology,” said Laurence Cooper, M.D., Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer of Ziopharm. “We believe RPM is the fastest approach to manufacturing and releasing CD19-specific CAR-T, as T cells from the blood stream are genetically reprogramed with the Sleeping Beauty system and then infused within two days of gene transfer. Existing commercial T-cell products using viral-based manufacturing are costly, time consuming to make and complex to deliver. We are now positioned to not only address those issues, but also to treat a patient group that remains underserved by existing therapies.”

Up to 24 patients will be enrolled to evaluate infusion of donor-derived RPM CAR-T in patients with CD19+ leukemias and lymphomas who have relapsed after allogeneic BMT. This study will be conducted at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center under an investigator-initiated trial expected to begin later this year.

Click here to read the full press release.

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