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Results from first pancreatic cancer trial using immunostimulatory gene therapy is published in Lancet Oncology

UPPSALA, SWEDEN, March 26, 2024. Lokon Pharma AB, a Swedish Biotech company developing a novel immunostimulatory gene therapy for cancer, announced today the publication of data from LOKON001, a first-in-human clinical trial treating advanced pancreatic cancer patients with a combination of LOAd703 - an oncolytic adenovirus with transgenes encoding TMZ-CD40L and 4-1BBL - and standard chemotherapy.

LOKON001 (NCT02705196) was designed as a two-armed trial investigating LOAd703 plus standard nab-paclitaxel/gemcitabine (Arm 1) and LOAd703 plus nab-paclitaxel/gemcitabine and the PD-L1 checkpoint inhibitor atezolizumab (Arm 2). Results from Arm 1 have now been published Lancet Oncology.1

“After several years of careful development of the LOAd technology platform and identification of our lead clinical product LOAd703, we are very excited to share with the research and clinical community the data from our first clinical trial. It is a pivotal milestone for us as a young biotech company,” says Angelica Loskog, the CEO of Lokon Pharma and Professor of Immunotherapy at Uppsala University. She adds, “By introducing genes directly into the tumor lesion using viral vectors, we aim to inflame the tumor microenvironment and generate tumor immunity in cancers not otherwise responding to immunotherapy. Our approach holds significant promise for pancreatic cancer patients.”

Dr. Benjamin Musher, Associate Professor of Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine’s Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center (Houston, TX) and the principal clinical investigator of LOKON001, adds “Pancreatic cancer is notoriously difficult to treat and has thus far proven resistant to immunotherapy. In this study, we have demonstrated the safety of LOAd703 in combination with chemotherapy and have seen antitumor activity that warrants further clinical investigation. We are obviously encouraged by the response rate of 55% and disease control rate of 91% observed in the highest LOAd703 dose level, which are higher than one would expect using chemotherapy alone,2 but only a randomized trial will be able to prove the added benefit of immune therapy. We are currently enrolling the last few patients in Arm 2, which adds a checkpoint inhibitor to LOAd703 plus paclitaxel/gemcitabine, and we intend to conduct a randomized study thereafter.”

1 Musher B, Rowinsky E, Smaglo B, Abidi W, Othman M, Patel K, Jawaid S, Jing J, Brisco A, Leen A, Wu M, Sandin LC, Wenthe J, Eriksson E, Ullenhag G, Grilley B, Leja-Jarblad J, Hilsenbeck SG, Brenner MK, Loskog ASI. LOAd703, an oncolytic virus-based immunostimulatory gene therapy, combined with chemotherapy for unresectable or metastatic pancreatic cancer (LOKON001): Results from arm 1 of a non-randomised single-centre, phase 1/2 study. Lancet Oncology. In Press, 2024 March 25.

2Von Hoff DD, Ervin T, Arena FP, Chiorean EG, Infante J, Moore M, Seay T, Tjulandin SA, Ma WW, Saleh MN, Harris M, Reni M, Dowden S, Laheru D, Bahary N, Ramanathan RK, Tabernero J, Hidalgo M, Goldstein D, Van Cutsem E, Wei X, Iglesias J, Renschler MF. Increased survival in pancreatic cancer with nab-paclitaxel plus gemcitabine. N Engl J Med. 2013 Oct 31;369(18):1691-703.

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About Lokon Pharma

Lokon Pharma AB is a leading Swedish biotech company in the rapidly expanding field of tumor microenvironment gene engineering and is focused on the clinical development of an immunostimulatory gene therapy for cancers with high unmet medical need. LOAd703 (delolimogene mupadenorepvec), the first clinical candidate from the LOAd platform, induces expression of TMZ-CD40L and 4-1BBL in the tumor microenvironment to cause stroma inflammation and subsequent antitumor immunity. CD40L and 4-1BBL are two potent stimulators of dendritic cells, T cells, and NK cells, which are crucial inducers of the immune response against cancer cells.

Further information can be found at: www.lokonpharma.com


Angelica Loskog

Angelica Loskog

Presskontakt CEO, Prof

Lokon Pharma develops cutting edge immunotherapeutics

Lokon Pharma AB is a Swedish biotech company developing tumor microenvironment (TME) gene engineering vectors aiming to cause tumor stroma inflammation and subsequent anti-tumor immunity.

Lokon Pharma AB
Bredgränd 14
753 20 Uppsala