BioNTech challenges AstraZeneca with breast cancer precision drug trial, ET HealthWorld

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Frankfurt: BioNTech and its partner Duality Biologics said on Monday they initiated a late-stage trial testing their precision drug against a certain type of breast cancer, taking on a rival partnership between AstraZeneca and Daiichi Sankyo.

COVID-19 vaccine maker BioNTech, which is renewing its focus on its traditional roots in oncology, said in a joint statement with China’s Duality that their drug would be tested on women with a certain type of advanced breast cancer with low levels of a cell surface receptor known as HER2.

HER2 is a common mechanism of tumour growth that has been targeted by established drugs such as Roche‘s Herceptin. Partners Astra and Daiichi have taken the concept further with their leading drug Enhertu, based on the antibody-drug conjugate technology, a type of high-precision chemotherapy.

That drug is expected by analysts to generate several billions of dollars in annual revenue, mainly because the drug has been approved to treat a larger population of HER2-type breast cancer patients to include women with low levels of the receptor.

BioNTech and Duality said the new Phase III trial would test their drug – also an antibody-drug conjugate – on patients whose tumours grow in response to the hormones oestrogen or progesterone and which have low levels of HER2.

About 40 per cent to 45 per cent of all patients suffering from metastatic breast cancer meet those criteria, they added.

  • Published On Jan 22, 2024 at 06:57 PM IST

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