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PharmaShots Interview: In Conversation with Pyxis’ CMO Jay M. Feingold, Where he Shares Insights on the addition of In-Licensed & Internal IO Assets

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PharmaShots Interview: In Conversation with Pyxis’ CMO Jay M. Feingold, Where he Shares Insights on the addition of In-Licensed & Internal IO Assets

PharmaShots Interview: In Conversation with Pyxis’ CMO Jay M. Feingold, Where he Shares Insights on the addition of In-Licensed & Internal IO Assets

Shots:

  • Jay talked about the in-licensing of an IND-ready immuno-oncology (IO) candidate, anti-Siglec-15 Mab to the pipeline
  • Jay also spoke about the company’s IO targets and other under development immunotherapies
  • In addition, the interview provided the corporate and financial updates of the Pyxis Oncology

 

Smriti: Can you tell us something about your in-licensed Mab anti-Siglec-15, PYX-106? 

Jay: PYX-106 is a fully human monoclonal antibody that targets Siglec-15, a novel immune checkpoint broadly expressed across varying types of tumors that demonstrate essentially mutually exclusive expression with another immune checkpoint, PD-L1. PYX-106 may be used in combination with checkpoint inhibitors, like PD-(L)1 blockers, which could provide synergistic benefits. PYX-106 also has significant potential as a monotherapy to address the unmet need of patients who are unresponsive or who have stopped responding to current immunotherapies.

In preclinical studies, PYX-106 has demonstrated the ability to relieve Siglec-15 immune suppression. PYX-106 demonstrated a significantly longer half-life of seven days in an exploratory non-human primate study compared to the other anti-Siglec-15 asset in development, which has a half-life of about one day in human studies. Additionally, PYX-106 has a six-fold greater binding affinity to Siglec-15 compared to current benchmarks, which could allow for less frequent dosing while maintaining optimal activity.  

We plan to file an investigational new drug application (IND) for PYX-106 in the second half of 2022 and commence a Phase 1 basket study in a range of tumor types, such as non-small cell lung cancer, head and neck cancer, and metastatic thyroid cancer, shortly after.

 

Smriti: Give us insights into your company’s IO target catalog. 

Jay: Our IO target catalog is built on externally developed programs as well as an internal discovery engine, which is rooted in the work of Pyxis Oncology’s founding scientists. The target catalog includes a diverse portfolio of immunotherapies targeting broad immune regulatory mechanisms and novel immune checkpoints that hold the potential to transform the treatment landscape for patients with cancer.

 

Smriti: Throw some light on the company’s internally developed Mab candidates i.e., PYX-102.

Jay: PYX-102, our first internally developed IO candidate, targets KLRG1, an inhibitory receptor expressed on T cells and natural killer (NK) cells. The associated ligands, E-cadherin and N-cadherin, are expressed in a range of solid tumors. By blocking KLGR1 signaling, PYX-102 may relieve immune inhibition in tumors and rescue KLRG1-mediated suppression of human CD8+ T cells. PYX-102 also has the potential to be used as a monotherapy and in combination with other treatment strategies. We plan to file an IND for PYX-102 in the second half of 2023, targeting a range of solid tumors.

 

Smriti: Brief us about PYX-202, its MOA, and other details. 

Jay: PYX-202, in-licensed from LegoChem Biosciences, is an attractive antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) designed for the treatment of solid tumors that targets and binds to DLK1, a transmembrane protein believed to be involved in cancer cell self-renewal. PYX-202 is being developed for indications with a significant need for novel therapies such as small cell lung cancer and soft tissue sarcoma.

 

Smriti: Which another immunotherapy is under development in your pipeline against cancer? 

Jay: While PYX-102 and PYX-106 are our lead immunotherapies under development, we are continuing to explore our founding IP to internally develop additional therapies. We are also open to partnering for the development of promising and differentiated externally developed therapeutics across modalities.

 

Smriti: Tell us about the GLP study design.

Jay: In preparation for our IND filing and based on observation of our GLP studies to date, we have determined that we will need to conduct additional GLP and non-GLP toxicity studies to assess whether PYX-202 is a viable clinical candidate. We are continuing to monitor the progress of the program and expect to provide an update in mid-2022.

 

Smriti: If you can, provide us with the financial update of the company? And if Pyxis Oncology is looking for investors/deals to generate additional revenue/cash flow.

Jay: After a successful 2021, which included a $168M initial public offering (IPO) and a $152M Series B, we have an extremely strong balance sheet of $253 million as of March 29, 2022, that provides us with significant capital to advance our existing portfolio while exploring potential externally developed candidates. Our strong balance sheet and capabilities also position Pyxis Oncology as a partner- and buyer-of choice to steward the continued development of promising, under-resourced therapeutic candidates. Our ADC platform and IO discovery engine also provide us with the opportunity to generate non-dilutive capital through external partnerships. Overall, our agile business model has been purposefully designed to maximize all avenues of innovation and value creation to build a diversified multi-asset multiplatform oncology company for years to come. We look forward to continuing to execute on our vision to advance breakthrough science.

Source: Canva

About Author:

Jay M. Feingold is the CMO at Pyxis Oncology. He has more than 20 years of experience in academic medicine and the pharmaceutical industry and has new hematology and oncology drugs to the market. Dr. Feingold earned his M.D. and Ph.D. from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and trained in Pediatrics and Pediatric Hematology and Oncology at the UCLA Center for the Health Sciences. He is the President of the Board of Overseers of the A. Einstein College of Medicine Alumni Association.

 

Related Post: PharmaShots Interview: MindMed’s Robert Barrow Shares Insights on Study to show Key Differences Between LSD and Psilocybin


Smriti

Smriti is a Senior Editor at PharmaShots. She is curious and very passionate about recent updates and developments in the life sciences industry. She covers Biopharma, MedTech, and Digital health segments along with different reports at PharmaShots. She can be contacted at smriti@pharmashots.com.

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