Treatment for many patients with previously incurable metastatic disease has been revolutionized by agents targeting the CTLA-4 and PD-1/PD-L1 pathways—the first generation of immune checkpoint inhibitors. However, since only a subset of patients responds to treatment, strategies targeting other immunomodulatory mechanisms become necessary. An increased understanding of the tumor’s interactions with the microenvironment and the immune system is providing new therapeutic opportunities. Cambridge Healthtech Institute’s Immuno-Oncology Targets conference will cover next-generation targets in immuno-oncology and explore strategies for development.

Final Agenda

Wednesday, June 20

11:00 am Registration Open (America Foyer)

11:50 Bridging Luncheon Presentation: From Syngeneic to Humanized Mouse Models: Addressing the Needs for Novel Immunotherapies

Philippe_SlosPhilippe Slos, PhD, Study Director, Oncodesign

Discovery of novel immunotherapy represents a main and intense focus of research in oncology. Proof-of-concept studies in animals represent a challenge and require well-characterized and appropriate animal models with most of the time customized approaches. Some recent development and data generated for immune checkpoint modulators, adoptive cell transfer therapy, vaccines and bispecific T cell engagers will be presented.

12:20 pm Dessert and Coffee Break in the Exhibit Hall with Poster Viewing (America Ballroom)

Essex South

2:30 Refreshment Break in the Exhibit Hall with Poster Viewing (America Ballroom)

Essex North West

3:10 Chairperson’s Opening Remarks

Li Peng, PhD, Vice President, Biotherapeutics Discovery, Palleon Pharmaceuticals

3:15 Targeting the CD200 Checkpoint Blockade: A New Avenue for Immunotherapy

Michael Olin, PhD, Assistant Professor, Pediatrics, University of Minnesota; CSO, OX2 Therapeutics

3:45 New Immune Checkpoints for Human Cancer Immunotherapy

Xingxing_ZangXingxing Zang, PhD, Louis Goldstein Swan Endowed Chair and Professor, Microbiology and Immunology & Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine

Dr. Zang will discuss function, structure, and immunotherapy of immune checkpoints B7x, B7-H3, HHLA2, TMIGD2, ICOS, Tim-3. 

4:15 A New Immunomodulatory Strategy of Releasing Immunosuppression in Tumor Microenvironment

Li_PengLi Peng, PhD, Vice President, Biotherapeutics Discovery, Palleon Pharmaceuticals

Cancer therapy has been revolutionized by inhibiting immune-checkpoints to harness the power of the immune system in fighting cancer. Immune-checkpoint inhibitors, anti-CTLA-4 and PD-1/PD-L1 mAbs, have proved to achieve a durable response in a subset of cancer patients. However, the majority of patients are still resistant to the first generation of I/O drugs. Enormous effort is pursued to identify new immunomodulatory strategies. Here we describe a novel approach of blocking an immunosuppression pathway involved in the innate and adaptive response.

 4:45 PANEL DISCUSSION: Novel Immunomodulatory Strategies

Moderator: Li Peng, PhD, Vice President, Biotherapeutics Discovery, Palleon Pharmaceuticals

Panelists: Sourav Ghosh, PhD, Associate Professor, Neurology and Pharmacology, Yale University School of Medicine

Michael Olin, PhD, Assistant Professor, Pediatrics, University of Minnesota; CSO, OX2 Therapeutics

Xingxing Zang, PhD, Louis Goldstein Endowed Chair and Professor, Microbiology and Immunology & Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine

Chen Zhu, PhD, Lab Head, Sanofi Oncology

This discussion will cover the following topics:

  • Compare immunomodulatory strategies of antagonizing inhibitory receptors vs. agonizing stimulatory receptors
  • How innate immune system-based IO strategies complement and synergize the T-cell checkpoint-based therapies
  • How to identify immunomodulatory strategies tailored for different tumor phenotypes
  • Discuss emerging IO strategies such as microbiome and glycoimmune checkpoints

5:45 Close of Day and Dinner Short Course Registration*

*Separate registration required.

Thursday, June 21

7:30 am Registration Open (America Foyer) and Morning Coffee (Foyer)

Essex North West

8:30 Chairperson’s Remarks

8:35 Phase Ib/II Study of Lacnotuzumab (MCS110) Combined with Spartalizumab (PDR001) in Patients with Advanced Solid Tumors
 Jennifer Mataraza, PhD, Group Lead, Translational Immuno-Oncology, Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research

9:05 Immunophenotyping and Therapy Efficacy in Murine Tumor Models

Britnie_JamesBritnie James, PhD, Senior Vice President, Pre-Clinical Services, Immunology and Oncology, Pre-Clinical Laboratory Services, MD Biosciences, Inc.

The immune phenotype of a patient’s tumor pre/post treatment can have a large role in response to therapy. To address this role, we have been immunophenotyping the tumor microenvironment and peripheral organs in multiple pre-clinical tumor models. By understanding the changes in immune status. with therapeutic intervention over time, we hope to correlate these immune phenotypes to tumor burden and/or survival.

9:35 Find Your Table and Meet Your Moderator

9:40 Interactive Breakout Discussion Groups

This session features various discussion groups that are led by a moderator/s who ensures focused conversations around the key issues listed. Attendees choose to join a specific group and the small, informal setting facilitates sharing of ideas and active networking.

Emerging Targets in Immuno-Oncology

Quamrul Hassan, PhD, Group Leader, Molecular and Cellular Pharmacology, EMD Serono

  • Advancement in technology to validate targets in immuno-oncology
  • Chemo-genomic approach in target validation
  • Mechanistic preference in target selection: stimulatory vs. inhibitory
  • Modality of inhibition in selecting targets: small molecules vs Biologics
  • Phenotypic Screen to target generation and validation

Modeling Innate and Adaptive Immunity in Murine Models

Marcus Bosenberg, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Dermatology and Pathology,

Yale University, Co-Leader, Genomics, Genetics and Epigenetics Program, Yale

Cancer Center

  • Can animal models of cancer immunology predict human responses?
  • How should preclinical models be used to guide drug development i immunology?
  • How can existing models be improved?

10:20 Coffee Break in the Exhibit Hall with Poster Viewing (America Ballroom)

Essex North West

11:05 CD38, an Emerging Immunotherapy Target

Chen Zhu, PhD, Lab Head, Sanofi Oncology

CD38 is a type II transmembrane enzyme-cum-receptor. Since multiple myeloma cells express high levels of CD38, targeting CD38-expressing myeloma cells by antibody dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC), phagocytosis (ADCD) and complement dependent cytotoxicity (CDC) has demonstrated promising clinical activity in heavily pretreated relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma (RRMM) patients. In addition, as multiple lines of immune cells express CD38, the biological function of CD38 could be further explored for its potential application in tumor immunotherapy.

11:35 An Innate Immune Checkpoint in Cancer Immunotherapy

Sourav_GhoshSourav Ghosh, PhD, Associate Professor, Neurology and Pharmacology, Yale University School of Medicine

T cell checkpoint inhibitors (TCIs) have greatly enhanced the success rate of immunotherapy. Notwithstanding, overall response rate remains limited. We have identified an innate immune checkpoint that limits dendritic cell function, as well as induces tissue repair program in macrophages. Since innate immunity is an obligate prerequisite for adaptive immunity, we hypothesize that the inhibition of this novel checkpoint could improve anti-tumor immune responses, including in TCI-resistant tumors.

12:05 pm TNFR2 Targeting in Cancer: Select Treg Elimination and Direct Tumor Killing

Denise_FaustmanDenise L. Faustman, MD, PhD, Director, Immunobiology, Massachusetts General Hospital; Associate Professor, Medicine, Harvard Medical School

Although many surface targets are a focus of immune-oncology therapies, a unique target is the TNFR2 receptor which is not only concentrated on the Treg cells of the tumor infiltrate but also now a newly identified and prevalent oncogene for diverse human tumors. In this presentation, we present human data for the efficacy and novel properties of dominant TNFR2 antagonistic antibodies on diverse fresh human cancers and their associated Tregs.


12:35 Networking Luncheon in the Exhibit Hall with Poster Viewing (America Ballroom)

Essex North West

1:55 Chairperson’s Remarks

Andrew Weinberg, PhD, Chief, Laboratory of Basic Immunology, Providence Health & Services

2:00 Understanding Costimulatory Agonists to OX40 for Cancer Immunotherapy

Andrew_WeinbergAndrew Weinberg, PhD, Chief, Laboratory of Basic Immunology, Providence Health & Service

Immune agonist Abs that target T cells have been shown to have potent therapeutic properties in cancer-bearing hosts. In particular, anti-OX40 agonist Abs target CD4 and CD8 T cells as well as Tregs and understanding the role of their stimulatory activity on each cell type will be discussed. Dosing and timing of delivery will also be discussed as they have quite different properties when compared to checkpoint blockade Abs.

2:30 Combination Approaches with Immune Agonist Antibodies

Patrick_MayesPatrick Mayes, PhD, Executive Director, Head, IO Antibody Research, Incyte

This presentation will cover the unique challenges of agonist mAb design and development as well as strategies for improving activity through combinations.

3:00 Preclinical Characterization of a Novel STING Agonist, MK-1454

Saso_CemerskiSaso Cemerski, PhD, Principal Scientist, Merck Research Labs

MK-1454, a novel STING agonist, induces potent cytokine responses and activates several immune cell types in vitro including MDSCs and M2-macrophages, key suppressive myeloid cells in the TME. MK-1454 induces robust anti-tumor activity in mouse syngeneic tumor models and cytokine production and gene expression changes in ex vivo-stimulated human primary tumors. MK-1454 is currently being evaluated in cancer patients both as monotherapy and in combination with Keytruda.

3:30 ATOR-1017 - A Tumor-Directed Fcγ-Receptor Cross-Linking Dependent 4-1BB Agonistic Antibody

Karin_Enell_SmithKarin Enell Smith, PhD, Senior Scientist, Preclinical Development, Alligator Bioscience AB

ATOR-1017 is an IgG4 antibody binding to the co-stimulatory receptor 4-1BB with a unique functional profile compared to the two 4-1BB antibodies currently in clinical development. The functional activity is dependent on cross-linking mediated by Fcγ receptors, which directs the immune activation to the tumor area where 4-1BB as well as certain Fcγ receptors are highly expressed. This reduces the risk of inducing systemic immune activation and liver toxicity. Therefore, ATOR-1017 has the potential to be a best-in-class 4-1BB antibody in terms of risk-benefit profile.

4:00 Close of Conference

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