CASI Pharma (CASI) Partner, BioInvent International AB, Report Phase I/IIA Data that Suggests BI-1206 Restores Activity Of Rituximab in Relapsed Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma Patients

January 28, 2021 7:12 AM EST

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CASI Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: CASI) today announces that its partner BioInvent International AB, a biotech company focused on the discovery and development of novel and first-in-class immune-modulatory antibodies for cancer immunotherapy, announced positive interim results from the Phase I/IIa trial of the novel anti-FcγRIIB antibody BI-1206 in combination with rituximab (anti-CD20 monoclonal antibody) in patients with indolent relapsed or refractory B-cell non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL).

"The responses observed in six out of nine patients are very encouraging and clearly suggest that BI-1206 may restore the response to rituximab in patients who have few treatment alternatives. The complete responses we have seen in two patients are particularly impressive and indicate that BI-1206 has the potential to significantly improve the lives of NHL patients who have progressed after several lines of treatment. Based on these results, we will now move to identify the recommended Phase II dose for the Phase IIa part of the trial and look forward to further evaluating the exciting potential of BI-1206 to bring much needed innovation to lymphoma patients," said Martin Welschof, Ph.D, CEO of BioInvent.

Of the 9 patients who completed the induction cycle, 6 patients have shown either complete or partial responses several of which are still ongoing. Two patients (30 mg and 70 mg dose) achieved a complete response, which continues to be sustained 12 and 24 months later. Another patient who had a blastoid form of MCL achieved a partial response, and a complete depletion of peripheral tumor cells. Readout from two patients is still pending.

A total of 15 patients have been recruited to date in the Phase I dose escalation part of the study, all of whom were late stage and have failed conventional treatments, including several lines of rituximab-containing therapies.

To address dose limiting toxicities seen at higher doses earlier in the trial, a new safety protocol was implemented, enabling higher doses to be administered. No dose-limiting toxicities have been observed in the five patients who have been treated under the current protocol, despite receiving higher doses of BI-1206.

Wei-Wu He, Ph.D., CASI's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said, "We continue to be excited about this anti-FcγRIIB antibody's potential in restoring rituximab's activity in NHL patients, and these results provided further encouraging evidence of its potential as a durable and safe treatment alternative. We remain encouraged by its potential application across multiple tumor types in many first line treatments and in refractory settings and are excited to be taking an important step closer to making BI-1206 available to patients and healthcare providers across Greater China."

BioInvent will hold a key opinion leader (KOL) call today, Thursday, January 28 at 5:30 p.m. CET (11:30 a.m. ET) to discuss the results and next steps in clinical development of BI-1206. Renowned lymphoma expert Mats Jerkeman, MD, Lund University, will give a presentation on the current treatment landscape, and unmet medical need for patients with relapsed or refractory NHL. The BioInvent management team will be available for Q&A and CASI will provide an update on the development plan and potential for BI-1206 in China.

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