Industry News: Advances in Early-Stage Oncology

20 Apr 2018


Sanofi presented nine abstracts at the AACR Annual Meeting in Chicago from April 14-18. Building on its strong heritage in oncology, the company aims to share new, early-stage studies highlighting an emerging and dynamic portfolio that encompasses diverse strategies, including immuno-oncology.

Sanofi’s abstracts at AACR includes a late-breaking pre-clinical presentation in partnership with BioNTech highlighting the potential impact of combination treatment with intra-tumoral cytokine mRNAs, an emerging class of immunotherapy medication. Additionally, results on overcoming resistance to an already-established type of immunotherapy, PD-1 (programmed cell death protein 1) inhibitors, was presented. Notably, these data featured Sanofi’s TGF-beta candidate, SAR439459, along with a joint presentation with Evotec on the investigational candidate EVT801, a small molecule inhibitor of VEGFR3 to target myeloid derived suppressor cells (MDSCs) in the tumor microenvironment. Sanofi is also advancing SAR439859, a SERD (selective estrogen receptor degrader) in estrogen-receptor-positive breast cancer and a number of presentations on this candidate was presented. 

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“Sanofi was excited to share a broad range of promising early-stage science in oncology at AACR 2018,” said Yong-Jun Liu, M.D., Ph.D., Head of Research, Global R&D at Sanofi. “By strengthening our internal research capabilities, and by collaborating with the key therapeutic leaders in this field, we are now able to demonstrate the emerging strength and depth of our oncology pipeline at Sanofi.”

The company is pursuing a breadth of approaches and new technologies to shape its early-stage oncology pipeline, including small molecule therapeutics, next-generation biologics such as antibody drug conjugates, and multi-targeting therapies.

Sanofi’s presentations at AACR 2018 are summarized below.

Late breaking presentation

  • Combinatorial treatment with intratumoral cytokine mRNAs results in high frequency of tumor rejection and development of anti-tumor immunity across a range of preclinical cancer models.

Oral presentation

  • SAR439859, an orally bioavailable selective estrogen receptor degrader (SERD) that demonstrates robust antitumor efficacy and limited cross-resistance in ER+ breast cancer.

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Sanofi presentation with Evotec

  • Translation to the clinic of EVT801: A novel immune-oncology agent for addressing innate-driven immunosuppression into the tumor microenvironment and expanding patient population responding to immune checkpoint therapies.  

Poster presentations

  • Pre-clinical development of a novel CD3-CD123 bispecific T-cell engager using Cross-Over-Dual-Variable-Domain (CODV) format for the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia (AML).
  • Sensitivity of liver cancer cell lines to B-catenin knock-down correlates with pathway activation.
  • The anti-TGFβ neutralizing antibody, SAR439459, blocks the immunosuppressive effects of TGFβ and inhibits the growth of syngeneic tumors in combination with anti-PD1.
  • Identification of SAR439859, an orally bioavailable selective estrogen receptor degrader (SERD) that has strong anti-tumor activity in wild-type and mutant ER+ breast cancer models. 
  • Basal-like breast cancer subtype is characterized by deregulated glutamine metabolism and is sensitive to GLS inhibition.
  • Translational biomarkers for SAR439459, an anti-TGFβ antibody for cancer immunotherapy.

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