Actinium Pharmaceuticals, Inc. andÂ Philogen S.p.A today announced that they have entered into a collaboration agreement under which the companies will explore feasibility and best uses of adding actinium 225 as a payload to Philogen's L19 antibody constructs.Â In the approach known as antiangiogenesis, L19 targets newly formed blood vessels that allow cancers to grow.
Antiangiogenesis is a successful approach to treating numerous cancer types.Â Currently approved antiangiogenesis drugs act mostly by interfering with the signaling pathway used by cancer cells to stimulate growth of blood vessels.Â In most cases, cancer cells eventually find alternative ways to spur blood vessels growth.Â In contrast, Philogen's L19 targets adhesion molecules that anchor blood vessel cells which makes it less susceptible to cancer controlled pathways.Â Depending on the architecture of vasculature and its proximity to cancer stem cells, actinium 225 could potentially offer an effective combination of properties tailor made for certain cancer types.
"We believe that this program has a significant potential that could potentially be leveraged in a number of cancer indications," said Duccio Neri, Co-founder and CEO of Philogen S.p.A. and Dragan Cicic, MD, CEO of Actinium Pharmaceuticals.Â "We have followed each company's work for years and are very pleased that we now have an opportunity to collaborate on Philogen's novel approach to the field of antiangiogenesis by extending into an alpha emitter approach using the powerful radioisotope actinium."
L19 is Philogen's proprietary monoclonal antibody platform that targets certain isoforms of fibronectin, an adhesion molecule necessary for growth of cancer blood vessels.Â Philogen has developed several formats of the L19 antibody as well as several antibody-payload combinations to utilize depending on the characteristics of the target cancer's vasculature.
About Actinium 225
Actinium-225 decays by giving off high-energy alpha particles, which kill cancer cells. When actinium decays, it produces a series of daughter atoms, each of which gives off its own alpha particle, increasing the chances that the cancer cell will be destroyed.Â The technology was first demonstrated by Dr. David Scheinberg at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.
About Philogen S.p.A.
Philogen is a Swiss-Italian integrated biotechnology company founded in 1996,Â with the mission to develop innovative biopharmaceuticals forÂ the treatment of angiogenesis-related disorders. Angiogenesis, i.e. the formation of new blood vessels, is a characteristic feature of many severe pathologies such as cancer, rheumatoid arthritis and age-related macular degeneration.
The company has been a pioneer in the isolation, engineering and clinical development of lead products capable of targeting angiogenesis in-vivo and has been the first in the world to demonstrate that human monoclonal antibodies, specific for a marker of angiogenesis, can efficiently and selectively target the tumor neo-vasculature both in animal models and in cancer patients.
At present,Â PhilogenÂ has four promising anti-cancer antibody derivatives and an antibody-derivative for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis in clinical studies. Two registrational studies are in planning.
About Actinium Pharmaceuticals
Actinium Pharmaceuticals, Inc.Â is a U.S. based biopharmaceutical company that develops innovative alpha particle immunotherapeutics based on its proprietary platform for the therapeutic utilization of alpha particle emitting actinium-225 and bismuth-213 radiopharmaceuticals in association with monoclonal antibodies.