Legacy Product Candidates
We have observed each of our legacy product candidates in our oncology program, MP0250 and MP0274, to be well tolerated and exhibit promising levels of biological activity. Our experience in developing our legacy product candidates provided key learnings that we leverage as we progress the development of our other product candidates.
While the activity and tolerability of these programs are encouraging, a strategic decision was made to invest in programs where a clear clinical differentiation could be made through the DARPin® constructs. The competitive landscape for these programs, coupled with the need to be used in combination with other therapies, make these compounds attractive investments for potential partnerships. It is our intent to explore additional clinical development for MP0250 and MP0274 through clinical collaborations and partnerships, but we believe that further solo investment in these assets is unlikely.
Our first oncology DARPin® product candidate was MP0250, a proprietary multi-DARPin® product candidate consisting of four DARPin® domains. One targets VEGF, the activating ligand of the VEGF receptor, one targets hepatocyte growth factor, or HGF, the activating ligand of the c-MET receptor, and two target HSA. The VEGF and HGF targeting single-domain DARPin® proteins are designed to effectively bind to and thereby neutralize VEGF and HGF, while HSA binding increases MP0250’s half-life to extend treatment activity and may increase tissue penetration. We have conducted two Phase 2 clinical trials of MP0250, one in multiple myeloma patients and one in EGFR-mutated NSCLC patients, both in combination with standard-of-care treatments. MP0250 was administered to a total of 86 patients.
Our clinical development of MP0250 established the ability of our DARPin® product candidates to bind to more than one target, which we believe is a key element of preventing tumor escape and is a foundational attribute of many of our other product candidates. In addition, our learnings from including HSA binding in MP0250 to extend treatment activity have proven vital for our other product candidates
Our second DARPin® product candidate in oncology was MP0274, a proprietary DARPin® product candidate designed to bind to two epitopes on HER2. MP0274 is designed to inhibit HER2 activation and any subsequent activation of HER2 in conjunction with the HER 1 and HER3 receptor proteins that promote the growth of cancer cells. MP0274 was administered to a total of 22 patients.
In addition, to the early evidence of biological activity, we incorporated the learnings from the DARPin®’s ability to bind a single target on more than one epitope validated by MP0274 in developing our MP0420 and MP0423 product candidates.