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News Article | January 13, 2016
Site: www.fastcompany.com

It wasn't expected to be a major State of the Union address—a final speech from a president in his last term, recounting achievements and expressing hope for the future. And then Obama made some news: "Let’s make America the country that cures cancer once and for all." And to lead the administration's effort, the president picked VP Joe Biden, who recently lost his son Beau to cancer, and who has said that finding a cure is one of his major life goals. Obama compared the effort to a moonshot, and he's not the only one to do this. His State of the Union address came just one day after the launch of another effort, led by big pharma and biotech companies, dubbed Cancer MoonShot 2020. The leader of MoonShot 2020, biotech company NantWorks' controversial founder and CEO Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, is one of the people who has met with the vice president to discuss radical cancer-treating approaches and has influenced Biden's thinking on the topic, reports the New York Times. At least one branch of the federal government, the John P. Murtha Cancer Center at Walter Reed Military Hospital, is on record as supporting Soon-Shiong's MoonShot. With details still to come about the administration's moonshot, Soon-Shiong's project offers a few hints of what these new cancer-fighting approaches may entail. His project, formally announced on January 11, is a switch from chemotherapy to immunotherapy; from killing cancer cells directly to helping the body's immune system kill cancer. It is focused on personalized genetic sequencing to develop custom treatments for each patient. And the time frame is at least as aggressive as the race to the moon. Within five years, it aims to not only design but also implement clinical trials of new immunotherapies for 20 tumor types in up to 20,000 patients. By 2020, these trials are expected to get as far as phase 3—widespread participation on an unheard-of timeframe. Though it's a nonprofit, MoonShot 2020 is led by big pharma firms like Celgene and Amgen, and biotech companies including NantKwest, Etubics, Altor Bioscience, and Precision Biologics. Participating hospitals and universities include Massachusetts General Hospital, Johns Hopkins University, the University of Miami, the University of Utah, and the Tufts Cancer Center. One biotech company, NantWorks, is spearheading the effort and is the key link to Biden, who reached out to Soon-Shiong as Beau Biden was still battling the disease. According to the Times, the VP became a believer in Soon-Shiong's radical approach to cancer, which the physician was already calling a moonshot in a two-page proposal he gave to the VP. In announcing that he would not run for president, Biden expressed his support for Soon-Shiong's vision, saying, " I believe that we need a moonshot in this country to cure cancer. It's personal. But I know we can do this." Biden later added, "If I could be anything, I would have wanted to have been the president that ended cancer, because it's possible." Instead, he aspires to be the VP who does. The exact nature of the Obama's administration's support for the moonshot immunotherapy approach remains unclear. Any tests will have to follow federal guidelines, of course, and government can play a role in speeding up approvals. The biggest commitment so far is from the US military through the participation of the John P. Murtha Cancer Center at Walter Reed Military Hospital, in part by sourcing participants. "We validate big science through our clinical trials network," wrote Col. Craig Shriver, M.D., of the Murtha Center in the MoonShot program's press release. "There are 1.2 million active duty military members, 9.3 million beneficiaries that receive military health care. That’s a huge network." Note: An earlier version of this article incorrectly characterized Obama's comments as a formal endorsement of Dr. Soon-Shiong's MoonShot program.


Patel S.P.,Duke University | Bristol A.,Precision Biologics | Saric O.,Precision Biologics | Wang X.-P.,Precision Biologics | And 3 more authors.
Cancer Immunology, Immunotherapy | Year: 2013

Purpose: NPC-1C is a chimeric immunoglobulin IgG1 developed from antigen tested in the Hollinshead tumor vaccine trials that recognizes an immunogenic MUC5AC-related tumor-associated antigen. In this article, we describe the pre-clinical characterization of this antibody that is currently being tested in human clinical trials. Experimental design: The specificity of NPC-1C for pancreatic and colorectal cancer cell lines was tested by flow cytometry assays and immunohistochemical staining. Antibody-dependent cell cytotoxicity was measured using a tumor cell line lysis assay. Anti-tumor efficacy and biodistribution were assessed in nude mice bearing human pancreatic tumor xenografts. Results: Human tumor cell binding measured by flow cytometry ranged from 52 to 94 % of cells stained positive with NPC-1C in three colorectal and one pancreatic cell lines, while IHC demonstrated staining of 43 % of colon cancers and 48 % of pancreatic cancer tissues, with little or no cross-reactivity of NPC-1C with normal colon or pancreas tissues. In vitro NPC-1C-mediated tumor cell killing occurred in a median of 44.5 % of four colorectal and three pancreatic tumor cell lines. In vivo anti-tumor efficacy in a human pancreatic CFPAC-1 tumor xenograft model was demonstrated with a twofold to threefold reduction in tumor growth in the NPC-1C-treated mice compared to saline and human IgG controls. Pharmacodynamic studies indicate NPC-1C localizes in antigen-positive tumors and has minimal uptake in normal mouse tissues. Conclusions: NPC-1C, a chimeric monoclonal antibody that reacts with a MUC5AC-related antigen expressed by pancreatic and colorectal tumor tissues, has promising preclinical activity in pancreatic and colorectal adenocarcinoma. © 2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.


Patent
Precision Biologics | Date: 2014-10-08

The present invention relates to the use of binding equivalents of monoclonal antibody 31.1, including chimerized and/or humanized versions thereof, antibody fragments as well as competitively binding and co-specific antibodies and antibody fragments, in the treatment of pancreatic cancer.


The present invention provides for recombinant monoclonal antibodies that bind to human colorectal and pancreatic carcinoma-associated antigens, along with nucleic acid sequences encoding the antibody chains, and the amino acid sequences corresponding to the nucleic acids, and uses for these antibodies, nucleic acids and amino acids.


This invention relates to humanized antibodies that selectively bind the 31.1 epitope on the A33 protein differentially expressed in cancers including, lung cancer, ovarian cancer, pancreas cancer, breast cancer, and colon cancer, and diagnostic and therapeutic usages.


The present invention provides for recombinant monoclonal antibodies that bind to human colorectal and pancreatic carcinoma-associated antigens, along with nucleic acid sequences encoding the antibody chains, and the amino acid sequences corresponding to the nucleic acids, and uses for these antibodies, nucleic acids and amino acids.


Patent
Precision Biologics | Date: 2015-05-29

The invention relates to a peptidomimetic of an NPC-1 epitope on the MUC5AC protein which is differentially expressed in pancreatic and colorectal cancer, and diagnostic and therapeutic usages. Further, antibodies that selectively bind the NPC-1 epitope peptidomimetics and may be used in diagnostic and therapeutic methods.


The present invention provides for purified or highly pure recombinant monoclonal antibodies that bind to human colorectal and pancreatic carcinoma-associated antigens (CPAA), along with nucleic acid sequences encoding the antibody chains, and the amino acid sequences corresponding to said nucleic acids and uses for said sequences.


Patent
Precision Biologics | Date: 2011-06-22

This invention relates to NPC-1 antigen on the MUC5AC protein and 16C3 antigen on CEACAM5 and CEACAM6 proteins, and 31.1 epitope on the A33 protein are differentially expressed in cancers including, lung cancer, ovarian cancer, pancreas cancer, breast cancer, and colon cancer, and diagnostic and therapeutic usages. Further, NPC-1, 16C3, and/or 31.1 epitope specific antibodies and diagnostic and therapeutic methods of use.


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