Top-line data expected in Q1 2018
TEL AVIV, Israel, Oct. 02, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- VBL Therapeutics (NASDAQ:VBLT), today announced that the independent Data Safety Monitoring Committee (DSMC) met on September 28, 2017 to conduct its third and final safety review of the Phase 3 GLOBE Study investigating ofranergene obadenovec (VB-111) in recurrent glioblastoma (GBM). The DSMC is an independent multidisciplinary group that conducts detailed reviews of un-blinded study data, discusses potential safety concerns and provides recommendations regarding trial continuation. The committee reviewed the GLOBE safety data, including mortality data, collected through a cutoff date in August 2017 and stated that they did not identify any safety concerns. The DSMC confirmed that no additional follow up will be necessary. Accordingly, the DSMC unanimously recommended that the study continue as planned, to completion.
“The positive DSMC recommendation supports the safety of VB-111 and represents an important milestone reached successfully in the GLOBE study,” said Dror Harats, M.D., chief executive officer of VBL Therapeutics. “No additional interim analyses are planned, and we currently expect top-line results from the study to be available in Q1 2018.”
Corinne Epperly, M.D., MPH, U.S. chief operating officer, added, “This trial has the potential to be the first ever study with a systemic drug candidate to help people with recurrent GBM live significantly longer compared to a standard-of-care regimen. We will work with the health authorities to bring this novel therapy option to the patients who need it as quickly as possible.”
About the GLOBE study
The Phase 3 GLOBE study is proceeding under a Special Protocol Assessment (SPA) granted by the FDA, with full endorsement by the Canadian Brain Tumor Consortium (CBTC). VB-111 has received orphan drug designation in the United States and Europe and was granted Fast Track designation by the FDA for promising and meaningful long-term survival in patients with glioblastoma that has recurred following treatment with standard chemotherapy and radiation. The study in recurrent GBM is comparing VB-111 in combination with Avastin® (bevacizumab) to Avastin alone and has recruited 256 patients in the US, Canada and Israel.
About Glioblastoma (GBM)
GBM is the most common and most aggressive form of primary brain tumors. In 2017, it is estimated there will be approximately 12,000-13,000 new cases diagnosed in the United States. Median overall survival (OS) from diagnosis averages 12 to 15 months with patients treated usually with surgery, chemotherapy and radiation. Progression occurs within approximately 6 months in virtually all patients, and upon progression median OS is about 6-8 months. Although significant research and clinical efforts have focused on improving treatments for recurrent GBM, no systemic therapy has shown an OS benefit, resulting in a significant unmet medical need.
About Ofranergene Obadenovec (VB-111)
Ofranergene obadenovec is a unique biologic agent that uses a dual mechanism to target solid tumors. Based on a non-integrating, non-replicating, Adeno 5 vector, ofranergene obadenovec utilizes VBL's proprietary Vascular Targeting System (VTS™) to target the tumor vasculature for cancer therapy. Unlike anti-VEGF or TKIs, ofranergene obadenovec does not aim to block a specific pro-angiogenic pathway; instead, it uses an angiogenesis-specific sensor (VBL's PPE-1-3x proprietary promoter) to specifically induce cell death in angiogenic endothelial cells in the tumor milieu. This mechanism retains activity regardless of baseline tumor mutations or the identity of the pro-angiogenic factors secreted by the tumor and shows activity even after failure of prior treatment with other anti-angiogenics. In addition, ofranergene obadenovec induces specific anti-tumor immune response, which is accompanied by recruitment of CD8 T-cells and apoptosis of tumor cells.
Ofranergene obadenovec completed a Phase 2 study in recurrent GBM, which showed a statistically significant improvement in overall survival in patients treated with ofranergene obadenovec through progression, compared to either patients treated with ofranergene obadenovec followed by bevacizumab alone, or to historical bevacizumab data. In a Phase 2 trial for recurrent platinum-resistant ovarian cancer, ofranergene obadenovec demonstrated a statistically significant increase in overall survival and 60% durable response rate (as measured by reduction in CA-125), approximately twice the historical response with bevacizumab plus chemotherapy in ovarian cancer. In a Phase 2 study in recurrent, iodine-resistant differentiated thyroid cancer, ofranergene obadenovec met the primary endpoint providing evidence of disease stabilization with a positive safety profile, along with a dose-response and evidence of an overall survival benefit. Ofranergene obadenovec has received Fast Track Designation for recurrent glioblastoma in the U.S. and orphan drug status for glioblastoma in both the U.S. and EU.
Vascular Biogenics Ltd., operating as VBL Therapeutics, is a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of first-in-class treatments for cancer. The Company’s lead oncology product candidate, ofranergene obadenovec (VB-111), is a first-in-class, targeted anti-cancer gene-therapy agent that is positioned to treat a wide range of solid tumors. It is conveniently administered as an IV infusion once every two months. It has been observed to be well-tolerated in >300 cancer patients and we have observed its efficacy signals in an “all comers” Phase 1 trial as well as in three tumor-specific Phase 2 studies. Ofranergene obadenovec is currently being studied in a Phase 3 pivotal trial for recurrent Glioblastoma, conducted under an FDA Special Protocol Assessment (SPA).
Forward Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements. All statements other than statements of historical fact are forward-looking statements, which are often indicated by terms such as “anticipate,” “believe,” “could,” “estimate,” “expect,” “goal,” “intend,” “look forward to”, “may,” “plan,” “potential,” “predict,” “project,” “should,” “will,” “would” and similar expressions. These forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements regarding the clinical development of ofranergene obadenovec (VB-111), including our expectations regarding the timing of results from the GLOBE study, and its therapeutic potential and clinical results. These forward-looking statements are not promises or guarantees and involve substantial risks and uncertainties. Among the factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described or projected herein include uncertainties associated generally with research and development, clinical trials and related regulatory reviews and approvals, and the risk that historical clinical trial results may not be predictive of future trial results. In particular, results from our pivotal Phase 3 clinical trial of ofranergene obadenovec (VB-111) in recurrent GBM may not support approval of ofranergene obadenovec for marketing in the United States, notwithstanding the positive results seen in prior clinical experience. A further list and description of these risks, uncertainties and other risks can be found in the Company’s regulatory filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, including in our annual report on Form 20-F for the year ended December 31, 2016. Existing and prospective investors are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date hereof. VBL Therapeutics undertakes no obligation to update or revise the information contained in this press release, whether as a result of new information, future events or circumstances or otherwise.
Avastin® (bevacizumab) is a registered trademark of Genentech Inc.
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