SHANGHAI,- InxMed (Shanghai) Co., Ltd., a clinical stage biotech company dedicated to developing innovative, individualized medicines with international impact, today announced that the company has entered into a clinical collaboration with a subsidiary of Merck & Co, Inc. Kenilworth, NJ U.S.A., known as MSD outside the United States and Canada, to evaluate IN10018, an investigational proprietary focal adhesion kinase (FAK) inhibitor in combination with pembrolizumab, MSD’s anti-PD-1 therapy, in patients with pancreatic cancer. InxMed will be the study sponsor and MSD will provide pembrolizumab to InxMed to use in the clinical study. This is the first global clinical collaboration between the two companies.
Dr. Zaiqi Wang, InxMed’s Chairman and CEO, commented: “IN10018 is an innovative best-in-class FAK inhibitor with significant effect on tumor micro-environment, a critical component to conquer tumor. We are very excited that MSD has collaborated with InxMed with the goal of developing additional treatment options for patients with pancreatic cancer through the evaluation of IN10018 in combination with pembrolizumab. This collaboration marks an important step forward for InxMed to steadily implement its best in disease combination strategy. We look forward to working with MSD to find a better solution for this deadly disease.”
Dr. Manuel Hidalgo Medina, M.D., Ph.D., Chief of the Division of Hematology and Medical Oncology and Senior Member of the Sandra and Edward Meyer Cancer Center at Weill Cornell Medicine and New York Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center and a world leading expert in pancreatic cancer, said: “There is a huge unmet medical need for pancreatic cancer patients and we need to tackle both cancer cells and tumor stroma to make future therapeutics work. FAK inhibitors could enhance pancreatic cancer treatment in combination with other therapeutic modalities.”
“Stroma is a significant issue for pancreatic cancer patients. Our recent research has indicated that, mechanistically, FAK inhibitors could significantly reduce the level of stroma and fibrosis and therefore enable the penetration of therapeutic agents to render/sensitize pancreatic cancers to either chemotherapy or immunotherapy,” said Dr. Paul Timpson, Professor at the Garvan Institute of Medical Research in Sydney, a leading expert in the studies of tumor stroma and therapeutic resistance, and author in Science and Translational Research and Nature Communication.
IN10018, formerly known as BI853520, is a potent and selective ATP-competitive focal adhesion kinase (FAK) small molecule inhibitor under clinical development stage in both the United States and China. InxMed owns the exclusive global rights for development and commercialization. Early clinical data of IN10018 has demonstrated a favorable safety profile and promising efficacy signals against a number of tumor types. With solid underlying disease biology, IN10018 has also shown potency to overcome fibrotic barrier and immune tolerance, boost multi-modalities including targeted therapy, chemotherapy, immune-therapy, and have potential to be an anchor molecule for further exploration of combination therapy.
InxMed is a clinical-stage biotech company focusing on developing “Best-in-Disease Combination” medicines to bring novel treatment option for patients. Our innovations are inspired by patients and driven by in-depth understanding of disease biology and pharmacology. InxMed is committed to building a translational engine equipped with global-level top-notch know how and efficient execution capabilities. Established in the end of 2018, InxMed has raised tens of millions of US dollars in series A round financing, established an integrated high caliber research and clinical development team across Shanghai, Beijing, United States, Canada and Australia. We have built a highly differentiated pipeline, and established licensing or co-development partnership with various multinational pharmaceutical companies.