Bristol-Myers Squibb is soon to conduct phase-2 trials in Korea on its immunotherapy, cabiralizumab, which treats pancreatic cancer.
The Ministry of Food and Drug Safety on Wednesday gave the green light to BMS Korea to test BMS-986227 in a phase-2, global, multi-center study.
Five Prime, a San Francisco-based biotech firm, developed the investigational immunotherapy and gave BMS exclusive global sales rights to BMS in 2015.
Cabiralizumab promotes immune response by inhibiting the colony stimulating factor-1 receptor (CSF1R) and blocking the activation and survival of macrophages. In preclinical studies, cabiralizumab reduced the number of immunosuppressive tumor-associated macrophages (TAMs) by inhibiting CSF1R.
The upcoming study will assess whether the experimental therapy in combination with nivolumab (under brand name Opdivo) is effective to treat patients with advanced pancreatic cancer, regardless of chemotherapy.
Globally, 160 patients will participate in the study. In Korea, six patients will join the trial at Samsung Medical Center and Seoul National University Hospital.