Regeneron and Vyriad Announce Strategic Agreement for Discovery and Development of New Oncolytic Virus Treatments for Cancer
Phase 2 trial will evaluate combination of PD-1 inhibitor Libtayo® (cemiplimab-rwlc) and oncolytic virus Voyager-V1; preclinical research collaboration will explore new oncolytic virus treatments
Vyriad to receive upfront payment and equity investment from Regeneron
Libtayo is a fully-human monoclonal antibody targeting the immune checkpoint receptor PD-1 (programmed cell death protein-1) and is being jointly developed and commercialized by Regeneron and Sanofi under a global collaboration agreement. Libtayo was invented by Regeneron using the company's proprietary VelocImmune® technology which uses a unique genetically-humanized mouse to produce optimized fully-human antibodies.
Vyriad's investigational drug candidate Voyager-V1 is a potent VSV programmed to attack cancer cells selectively, while also activating the immune system to kill local and distant cancer cells. Further, it amplifies inflammatory and antitumor immune system responses that help turn "cold" tumors "hot," which potentially enhances anti-PD-1 activity. Voyager-V1 is deliverable by intravenous infusion.
"Vyriad's differentiated oncolytic virotherapy platform helps Regeneron continue to diversify our arsenal of immuno-oncology approaches, which include multiple combinations with our anti-PD-1 backbone, as well as novel delivery and re-targeting mechanisms," said
"We are thrilled to partner with Regeneron in this far-reaching collaboration to develop novel cancer treatments," said
Under the agreement, Vyriad will receive an upfront payment and Regeneron will make an equity investment in the company. Regeneron will have an exclusive option to license Voyager-V1 and other collaboration products. Vyriad is eligible to receive additional payments based on the achievement of specified development and commercial milestones, as well as royalties on net sales of potential future VSV-based collaboration products. During the five-year collaboration term, Vyriad will work exclusively with Regeneron to research and develop VSV technologies. Specific financial terms were not disclosed.
More About Voyager-V1
Voyager-V1 is an investigational oncolytic virus that was designed for enhanced safety, efficacy, and traceability through the inclusion of an interferon beta gene, enabling the virus to replicate quickly in cancer cells without damaging healthy cells, recruit cancer-fighting immune cells to the tumor, and secrete a measurable reporter protein into the blood. Voyager-V1 was also engineered to include an iodine transporter NIS gene that facilitates tracking of the virus' spread to cancer cells throughout the body. Voyager-V1 is under evaluation as both a monotherapy and combination therapy in multiple Phase 1-2 studies for metastatic colorectal cancer, endometrial cancer, non-small cell lung cancer, squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck and various blood cancers.
More About Libtayo
Libtayo is approved in the U.S.,
Beyond the ongoing EMPOWER-CSCC-1 trial, Libtayo is also being investigated in adjuvant and neoadjuvant trials in CSCC and in potential registrational trials in non-small cell lung cancer, basal cell carcinoma and cervical cancer. Additional studies include trials in squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck, melanoma, colorectal cancer, prostate cancer, multiple myeloma, Hodgkin's lymphoma and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. These trials are designed to investigate Libtayo as monotherapy; in combination with conventional treatments like chemotherapy; or in combination with other investigational agents, including vaccines, oncolytic viruses and bispecific antibodies, among others. These potential uses are investigational, and their safety and efficacy have not been evaluated by any regulatory authority.
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION AND INDICATION FOR U.S. PATIENTS
What is the most important information I should know about Libtayo?
Libtayo is a medicine that may treat a type of skin cancer by working with your immune system. Libtayo can cause your immune system to attack normal organs and tissues in any area of your body and can affect the way they work. These problems can sometimes become severe or life-threatening and can lead to death. These problems may happen anytime during treatment or even after your treatment has ended.
Call or see your healthcare provider right away if you develop any symptoms of the following problems or these symptoms get worse:
- Lung problems (pneumonitis). Signs and symptoms of pneumonitis may include new or worsening cough, shortness of breath, and chest pain.
- Intestinal problems (colitis) that can lead to tears or holes in your intestine. Signs and symptoms of colitis may include diarrhea (loose stools) or more frequent bowel movements than usual; stools that are black, tarry, sticky or that have blood or mucus; and severe stomach-area (abdomen) pain or tenderness.
- Liver problems (hepatitis). Signs and symptoms of hepatitis may include yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes, severe nausea or vomiting, pain on the right side of your stomach area (abdomen), drowsiness, dark urine (tea colored), bleeding or bruising more easily than normal, and feeling less hungry than usual.
- Hormone gland problems (especially the adrenal glands, pituitary, thyroid and pancreas). Signs and symptoms that your hormone glands are not working properly may include headaches that will not go away or unusual headaches, rapid heartbeat, increased sweating, extreme tiredness, weight gain or weight loss, dizziness or fainting, feeling more hungry or thirsty than usual, hair loss, feeling cold, constipation, deeper voice, very low blood pressure, urinating more often than usual, nausea or vomiting, stomach-area (abdomen) pain, and changes in mood or behavior, such as decreased sex drive, irritability, or forgetfulness.
- Kidney problems, including nephritis and kidney failure. Signs of these problems may include decrease in your amount of urine, blood in your urine, swelling in your ankles, and loss of appetite.
- Skin problems. Signs of these problems may include rash, itching, skin blistering, and painful sores or ulcers in the mouth, nose, throat, or genital area.
- Problems in other organs. Signs of these problems may include headache, tiredness or weakness, sleepiness, changes in heartbeat (such as beating fast, seeming to skip a beat, or a pounding sensation), confusion, fever, muscle weakness, balance problems, nausea, vomiting, stiff neck, memory problems, seizures (encephalitis), swollen lymph nodes, rash or tender lumps on skin, cough, shortness of breath, vision changes, or eye pain (sarcoidosis), seeing or hearing things that are not there (hallucinations), severe muscle weakness, low red blood cells (anemia), bruises on the skin or bleeding, and changes in eyesight.
- Rejection of a transplanted organ. Your doctor should tell you what signs and symptoms you should report and monitor you, depending on the type of organ transplant that you have had.
- Infusion (IV) reactions that can sometimes be severe and life-threatening. Signs of these problems may include chills or shaking, itching or rash, flushing, shortness of breath or wheezing, dizziness, fever, feeling of passing out, back or neck pain, and facial swelling.
Getting medical treatment right away may help keep these problems from becoming more serious.
Your healthcare provider will check you for these problems during your treatment with Libtayo. Your healthcare provider may treat you with corticosteroid or hormone replacement medicines. Your healthcare provider may delay or completely stop treatment if you have severe side effects.
Before you receive Libtayo, tell your healthcare provider about all your medical conditions, including if you:
- have immune system problems such as Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, or lupus;
- have had an organ transplant;
- have lung or breathing problems;
- have liver or kidney problems;
- have diabetes;
- are pregnant or plan to become pregnant; Libtayo can harm your unborn baby.
Females who are able to become pregnant:
- Your healthcare provider will give you a pregnancy test before you start treatment.
- You should use an effective method of birth control during your treatment and for at least 4 months after your last dose of Libtayo. Talk with your healthcare provider about birth control methods that you can use during this time.
- Tell your healthcare provider right away if you become pregnant or think you may be pregnant during treatment with Libtayo.
- are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. It is not known if Libtayo passes into your breast milk. Do not breastfeed during treatment and for at least 4 months after the last dose of Libtayo.
Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
The most common side effects of Libtayo include tiredness, rash, and diarrhea. These are not all the possible side effects of Libtayo. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to
For more information, please see full Prescribing Information, including Medication Guide.
What is Libtayo?
Libtayo is a prescription medicine used to treat people with a type of skin cancer called cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (CSCC) that has spread or cannot be cured by surgery or radiation.
It is not known if Libtayo is safe and effective in children.
Regeneron is accelerating and improving the traditional drug development process through our proprietary VelociSuite® technologies, including VelocImmune® which uses a unique genetically-humanized mouse to produce optimized fully-human antibodies and bispecific antibodies, and through ambitious research initiatives such as the Regeneron Genetics Center, which is conducting one of the largest genetics sequencing efforts in the world.
For additional information about the company, please visit www.regeneron.com or follow @Regeneron on Twitter.
Vyriad is a clinical-stage company developing proprietary oncolytic virus therapies for the treatment of cancers with significant unmet needs. Founded by scientists at
Regeneron Forward-Looking Statements and Use of
This press release includes forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties relating to future events and the future performance of
Regeneron uses its media and investor relations website and social media outlets to publish important information about the Company, including information that may be deemed material to investors. Financial and other information about Regeneron is routinely posted and is accessible on Regeneron's media and investor relations website (http://newsroom.regeneron.com) and its Twitter feed (http://twitter.com/regeneron).
View original content:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/regeneron-and-vyriad-announce-strategic-agreement-for-discovery-and-development-of-new-oncolytic-virus-treatments-for-cancer-300952141.html