French Biotech Launches Tech Platform to Boost New Cancer Treatment Research
Transgene has announced the launch of Invir.IO, a new platform to help the design of new oncolytic viruses that modulate the cancer microenvironment.
Transgene designs targeted immunotherapies for the treatment of cancer and infectious diseases. Their lead products include Pexa-Vec, an oncolytic vaccine for the treatment of liver cancer, and TG4010, a therapeutic vaccine against non-small cell lung cancer. The company hopes that this will allow it to produce a range of multifunctional immunotherapies that will modulate the tumor’s immunosuppressive microenvironment.
Invir.IO is based on Transgene’s engineered Vaccinia virus strain, which can integrate into the target cell’s genome at a variety of sites. The technology is capable of arming viruses with additional weapons, for example, enzymes, antibodies and cytokines. It is currently being tested at the preclinical stage.
Eric Quéméneur, Chief Scientific Officer at Transgene, highlighted a major benefit of this approach, its flexibility: “The product candidates… will combine the intrinsic merits of oncolytic viruses in terms of tumor cell lysis and immune-genesis, with the properties of the vectorized immuno-modulatory molecules.”
Transgene has not had the best of times recently, with their performance dipping, forcing them to make cuts. The launch of Invir.IO, as well as the approval of Phase II trials for their lung cancer combination therapy in partnership with BMS, will lift spirits at this veteran of the French biotech scene.
Image – Rost9 / shutterstock.com