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08 January 2020

Vaccitech License

Licensing agreement between OXGENE™ and Vaccitech Oncology Ltd delivers HEK293-TetR cell line to manufacture immunotherapy for clinical trial in lung cancer

08 January 2020, Oxford – OXGENE™ is pleased to report that Vaccitech Oncology Ltd (VOLT) has successfully used a HEK293-TetR cell line, licenced from OXGENE™ in 2017, to manufacture adenoviral vectors expressing the tumour-associated antigens MAGE-A3 and NY-ESO-1 for a Phase I/IIa immunotherapy clinical trial for non-small-cell-lung-cancer (NSCLC).

OXGENE™ custom engineered its clinical quality, suspension HEK293 cell line to stably express a tetracycline regulated gene. This in-built control system means that the cells will only express the Tet regulated gene when the antibiotic doxycycline is present in the growth medium and gives tighter control of the Tet regulated genes than can be achieved by supplying the TetR protein through plasmid transfection. This gives the cell line a major advantage; it enables the manufacture of viral vectors expressing a cytotoxic transgene, which would otherwise kill the cells before sufficient virus had been produced to have a therapeutic effect.

OXGENE’s HEK293-TetR cell line improves adenoviral vector manufacture through increased yield and productivity compared to alternative cell lines, which benefits adenoviral-based therapeutic drug production.

VOLT is using this cell line as part of a collaboration with the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research (Ludwig). VOLT will initiate a clinical trial to test its VTP-600 therapeutic vaccine, manufactured in part using OXGENE’s HEK293-TetR cell line, for the treatment of NSCLC. The trial, sponsored by Cancer Research UK’s Centre for Drug Development (CDD), is expected to begin in multiple clinical sites in Q4 2020.

Vaccitech Ltd is also using OXGENE’s HEK293-TetR cell line to manufacture therapeutics due to enter clinical trials for chronic Hepatitis B infection and persistent high-risk Human Papilloma Virus infection and associated pre-cancerous lesions in the first half of 2020.

Ryan Cawood, Founder and Chief Executive Officer at OXGENE, said:

This is an extremely exciting time for both OXGENE and Vaccitech, and we look forward to seeing the first patient recruited to these important clinical trials.”