NeoImmuneTech’s NT-I7 Creates a More Immunogenic Tumor Microenvironment when Associated with Pembrolizumab
NeoImmuneTech, Inc. (NIT), a T cell-focused therapeutics company, presented data that suggests that NT-I7 plus pembrolizumab combination treatment enhances infiltration of PD-1+ T cells in cold tumors, at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress in Paris, France, September 9-13, 2022.
While initial results from the phase 2a study NIT-110 had showed that subjects responding to NT-I7 plus pembrolizumab had enhanced lymphocyte infiltration, NeoImmuneTech conducted a new biomarker analysis of the immune-associated changes in the tumor microenvironment (TME) after NT-I7 plus pembrolizumab. The overall goal was to continue to understand how the combination of the long-acting human IL-7 and a checkpoint inhibitor (CPI) can induce a stronger immune response, since CPIs alone are usually considered ineffective in cold tumors with low T cell infiltration.
New data presented in a poster at ESMO Congress 2022 suggest that the combination of NT-I7 and pembrolizumab induces infiltration of CD8 T cells into the tumor microenvironment in more than 80% of analyzed samples. The infiltration of CD8 T cells showed an increase of over 5-fold in over 50% of on-treatment samples after only one dose of NT-I7. Treatment with NT-I7 and pembrolizumab increased the immunogenicity of the TME. The analysis also revealed that treatment-induced reduction of the tumor volume was associated with the magnitude of CD8 T cell infiltration.
Dr. Se Hwan Yang, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of NeoImmuneTech said: “We continue to gather evidence to demonstrate that the combination of NT-I7 and pembrolizumab has promising clinical efficacy in very cold and immunosuppressive indications. Our latest data presented at ESMO indicate that the enhanced tumor-specific CD8 T cell infiltration into the tumor microenvironment may trigger enhanced clinical efficacy. This represents an encouraging path to potentially provide one day more therapeutic options to patients with cold tumors where CPIs are usually ineffective.”