Planegg/Martinsried, May 22, 2023. Medigene AG (Medigene, FSE: MDG1, Prime Standard), an immuno-oncology platform company focusing on the discovery and development of T cell immunotherapies for solid tumors, announced today that the Company has been issued a patent by the Japan Patent Office protecting its PD1-41BB switch receptor. Medigene’s PD1-41BB costimulatory switch receptor technology was developed by its partner Helmholtz Munich and is exclusively licensed to Medigene.
“We are delighted with the receipt of the patent grant for our PD1-41BB costimulatory switch receptor from the Japan Patent Office as it represents a further milestone as we continue to expand and strengthen our IP portfolio worldwide,” said Selwyn Ho, CEO at Medigene. “This adds to similar patents that were also granted in the United States and China in 2022 and reinforces the innovation inherent in key technologies of our end-to-end technology platform.”
In addition, the Company is pleased to report that it has recently been granted the patent protection of its T cell receptor (TCR) targeting PRAME (PReferentially expressed Antigen of MElanoma) in China. The patent grant in China complements patent protection for PRAME already received in Eurasia, Japan and Korea.
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Medigene AG (FSE: MDG1) is an immuno-oncology platform company dedicated to developing T cell therapies to effectively eliminate cancer. Its end-to-end technology platform, built on multiple proprietary and exclusive product development and product enhancement technologies, allows Medigene to create best-in-class differentiated, T cell receptor engineered T cell (TCR-T) therapies for multiple solid tumor indications that are optimized for both safety and efficacy. This platform provides product candidates for both its in-house therapeutics pipeline and partnering. For more information, please visit www.medigene.com
About Medigene’s End-to-End Platform
Medigene’s immunotherapies help activate the patient’s own defense mechanisms by harnessing T cells in the battle against cancer. Medigene’s end-to-end platform combines multiple exclusive and proprietary technologies to create best-in-class TCR-T therapies. The platform includes multiple product enhancement technologies, (e.g. PD1-41BB Switch Receptor, CD40L-CD28 Switch Receptor, Precision Pairing) and development optimization technologies (e.g. Allogeneic-HLA (Allo-HLA) TCR Priming) to aid the development of differentiated TCR-T therapies. Partnerships with multiple companies including BioNTech, 2seventy bio, and Hongsheng Sciences, continue to validate the platform’s assets & technologies.
About PD1-41BB Costimulatory Switch Receptor
Checkpoint inhibition via PD-1/PD-L1 pathway:
Cells of solid tumors are sensitive to killing by activated T cells but can escape this killing activity by producing inhibitory molecules known as “checkpoint proteins”, such as the Programmed Death Ligand 1 (PD-L1), on their surface. When this occurs, activated T cells which express PD-1, the natural receptor for PD-L1, are inactivated. The expression of PD-L1 is an adaptive immune resistance mechanism for tumors that can help them survive and grow.
The 4-1BB costimulatory signaling pathway:
Effective T cell immune responses to antigens typically require both a primary antigenic stimulation via the T cell receptor (TCR) and costimulatory signals. The intracellular signaling domains of the 4-1BB protein offer a well-characterized pathway of costimulation and enhanced T cell responses.
Medigene’s chimeric PD1-41BB costimulatory switch receptor turns the tumor’s attempted self-defense mechanism against the tumor by substituting the inhibitory signaling domain of PD-1 with the activating signaling domain of 4-1BB. Therefore, instead of inactivating T cells, the switch receptor delivers an activating signal to TCR-T cells. PD1-41BB-modified TCR-T cells proliferate strongly in the presence of PD-L1-positive tumor cells and kill more tumor cells upon repeated exposure. Additionally, switch receptor signals enable TCR-T cells to function better with low levels of glucose or high levels of TGFß, two conditions characteristic of strongly hostile tumor microenvironments.
PRAME (PReferentially expressed Antigen in MElanoma) is a tumor antigen of the cancer-testis-antigen family which is over-expressed in various solid and blood cancers. Expression in healthy tissue is limited to the testis, which itself is an immune-privileged tissue that usually cannot be attacked by the body’s own immune cells. This renders PRAME very suitable as a target antigen for TCR-T therapies.
This press release contains forward-looking statements representing the opinion of Medigene as of the date of this release. The actual results achieved by Medigene may differ significantly from the forward-looking statements made herein. Medigene is not bound to update any of these forward-looking statements. Medigene® is a registered trademark of Medigene AG. This trademark may be owned or licensed in select locations only.
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