Inhibition of CD44v6 Prevents Crucial Transformation of Cells Leading to Formation of Metastasis
amcure, a biopharmaceutical company developing first-in-class cancer therapeutics, today published pre-clinical results of its lead drug candidate, AMC303. The data showed the strong anti-tumor and anti-metastatic effects in various epithelial tumor cells by binding of AMC303 to the extracellular domain of CD44v6. The research was presented at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Annual Meeting 2018 in a poster entitled 'The allosteric inhibitor of CD44v6 AMC303 blocks c-MET, Ron and VEGFR-2 dependent signaling and cellular processes'.
"The results presented in this study emphasize the importance of CD44v6 inhibition in cancer and the potential of this approach to improve the chances against this disease," said Klaus Dembowsky, MD, PhD, CEO of amcure. "Not only did we show strong anti-cancer effects for AMC303, but we gained new mechanistic insights into the role of AMC303 in inhibition of one of the key drivers of metastasis, Epithelial-Mesenchymal-Transition (EMT). We look forward to substantiating the strong preclinical data sets for AMC303 with results from our current and future clinical trials."
The CD44 family of transmembrane glycoproteins comprises several variants that are involved in many cellular processes. The isoform CD44v6 has been shown to play a major role in tumor growth and metastasis. In this study, the amcure research team has shown that blocking CD44v6, an essential co-receptor for the receptor tyrosine kinases VEGFR-2, c-MET and RON by AMC303, interferes with several key steps in tumor progression and metastasis including EMT, cell migration and invasion. This novel mode of action results in strong anti-tumor and anti-metastatic effects of AMC303.
amcure's lead compound, AMC303, is being developed as a potential treatment for patients with advanced and metastatic epithelial tumors, e.g. pancreatic cancer, head and neck cancer, gastric cancer, colorectal cancer, breast cancer and lung cancer. AMC303 has a high specificity for inhibiting CD44v6, a co-receptor required for signaling through multiple cellular pathways (c-Met, VEGFR-2, RON) involved in tumor growth, angiogenesis and the development and regression of metastases. AMC303 has demonstrated strong effects in various in vitro and in vivo assays.
amcure GmbH is a spin-off from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology established in 2012. The company develops peptide-based compounds for the treatment of highly metastatic forms of cancer. amcure's most advanced development candidate, AMC303, has entered clinical development and has demonstrated in in vivo animal proof-of-concept studies a high efficacy against different types of epithelial cancers. amcure is supported by a grant from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research.
Dr. Klaus Dembowsky
Phone: +49 (0) 7247 934249-4 or +49 (0) 171 7930077
Fax: +49 (0) 7247 934249-9
MacDougall Biomedical Communications
Mario Brkulj or Shai Biran
Phone: +49 89 2420 9345 or +1 781-235-3060