Genexine said Monday that I-Mab Biopharma, a Chinese bio-firm, has administered the first dose of GX-I7, an immunotherapeutic drug candidate known as TJ107 in China.
Genexine's GX-I7 is a fusion of cytokine interleukin-7, which plays an essential role in the proliferation of T cells in the body. The company expects that it will have a synergistic effect when combined with various immunotherapeutic agents while serving as the only treatment for lymphocytopenia, which is common in cancer patients receiving chemotherapy and radiation therapy.
I-Mab signed a technology transfer agreement for GX-I7 from Genexine in 2017. Through the agreement, the company obtained exclusive development and sales rights in China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macao.
The Chinese company received approval from the China National Drug Administration (CNDA) to go ahead with phase 1b and 2a clinical trials for the drug in treating solid malignant tumors.
The phase I clinical trial will evaluate the safety, tolerability, pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamics of GX-I7 as a monotherapy in a multifunctional and dose-increasing clinical in 58 malignant solid tumor patients.
“Currently, I-Mab has eight pipelines in clinical stages, including the clinical phase 1b launch of TJ107, which we believe demonstrates our clinical development capabilities,” said Joan Shen, I-Mab’s research lab director. “Genexine's ongoing GX-I7 clinical trials will allow us to develop TJ107 in the Chinese market quickly.”