Takeda, Nectar Plan to Test New IO Combination in non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Patients

Takeda, Nectar Plan to Test New IO Combination in non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Patients

Nektar Therapeutics and Takeda Pharmaceutical are working together to evaluate a new therapy combining a lead investigational compound from each company —  NKTR-214 and TAK-659N — in people with blood cancers and solid tumors.

The first trial will test the combination in patients with non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and is expected to begin later this year.

NKTR-214 is an immunotherapy that aims to stimulate the immune system into generating cancer-killing immune cells. The therapy works by targeting specific CD122 receptors at the surface of these immune cells, prompting their rapid expansion and targeting them towards the tumor.

TAK-659 is an oral dual inhibitor of two proteins, the spleen tyrosine kinase (SYK) and its target protein, the cytokine receptor called FLT-3, previously shown to promote, for example, acute myelogenous leukemia. The therapy is being tested in clinical studies, either alone or in combination with other cancer-therapies in both solid and blood-originated cancers.

The new trial will investigate the benefits of combining NKTR-214 with oral daily doses of TAK-659, delivered every three-weeks, in non-Hodgkin lymphoma patients.

“We look forward to collaborating with Takeda to explore a range of combination therapy approaches with NKTR-214 and TAK-659 in liquid and solid tumor settings,” Jonathan Zalevsky, chief scientific officer and senior vice president of research at Nektar, said in a press release.

“Importantly, this clinical collaboration will allow us to understand how we can increase the clinical benefit of immunotherapies for patients when we leverage multiple I-O [immuno-oncology] modalities and target the immune cycle in complementary and novel ways,” he added.

Added Phil Rowlands, head of the Oncology Therapeutic Area Unit at Takeda: “NKTR-214 is unique in that it can stimulate tumor-killing T-cells in the tumor micro-environment itself. By combining with TAK-659, we hope to target different stages of the cancer immunity cycle in a combination regimen. This collaboration is aimed at achieving our goal of allowing more patients with different types of cancer to benefit from immunotherapies.”

Patricia holds her Ph.D. in Cell Biology from University Nova de Lisboa, and has served as an author on several research projects and fellowships, as well as major grant applications for European Agencies. She also served as a PhD student research assistant in the Laboratory of Doctor David A. Fidock, Department of Microbiology & Immunology, Columbia University, New York.
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Patricia holds her Ph.D. in Cell Biology from University Nova de Lisboa, and has served as an author on several research projects and fellowships, as well as major grant applications for European Agencies. She also served as a PhD student research assistant in the Laboratory of Doctor David A. Fidock, Department of Microbiology & Immunology, Columbia University, New York.

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