The immune system protects the body by identifying and eliminating invaders and diseased cells including cancer. Because cancers can hide from and inhibit the immune system, immunotherapies that amplify or redirect the immune system were developed. This includes checkpoint inhibitors that have improved the outcomes and increased the options for patients with certain types of cancer. However, not all patients benefit from checkpoint inhibitors. This is in large part due to the unique nature of cancer in each patient.
Tilsotolimod is injected directly into tumors, rather than being administered systemically, to limit the dosage required and concentrate its activity. The goal is to turn “cold” tumors “hot” and promote local immune activation against the cancer that then spreads to fight distant tumors throughout the body.
Translational studies from pre-clinical and early clinical studies have demonstrated rapid immune activation in the injected tumor along with systemic changes in T cells. Based on these findings, we’re conducting further trials on the combination of tilsotolimod and checkpoint inhibitors in patients with advanced solid tumors.
We’ve also entered into partnerships to investigate the potential benefits of tilsotolimod in combination with other immune therapies for patients with additional types of solid tumors.