Anti-cancer activity of HuCAL antibody revealed by new data from OncoMed

MorphoSys AG's (FSE: MOR; Prime Standard Segment, TecDAX) partner OncoMed Pharmaceuticals today announced that Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS) has published online data demonstrating the potent anti-cancer activity of OMP-18R5, a HuCAL antibody targeting the Wnt pathway, in multiple preclinical human tumor models. OMP-18R5 is currently in Phase 1 clinical testing.

The Wnt/beta-catenin pathway, which signals through the Frizzled (Fzd) receptor family and several co-receptors, has long been implicated in cancer. OncoMed researchers identified a novel therapeutic approach to targeting the Wnt pathway with a monoclonal antibody. OMP-18R5, initially identified by binding to Frizzled 7, interacts with key Fzd receptors through a conserved epitope within the extracellular domain and thereby inhibits canonical Wnt signaling induced by multiple Wnt family members.

In xenograft studies with minimally passaged human tumors, OMP-18R5 inhibits the growth of a range of tumor types and exhibits synergistic activity with standard-of-care chemotherapeutic agents. These data are published in the current edition of PNAS in an article entitled "Wnt Pathway Inhibition via the Targeting of Frizzled Receptors Results in Decreased Growth and Tumorigenicity of Human Tumors."

OMP-18R5 was made using MorphoSys's proprietary HuCAL GOLD antibody technology. The ongoing Phase 1 trial is being conducted in patients with advanced solid tumors and is designed to assess safety and pharmacokinetics, and to provide initial indications of anti-tumor efficacy and the effects of OMP-18R5 on Wnt pathway biomarkers. OMP-18R5 is part of OncoMed's collaboration with Bayer Pharma AG.

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