Chimeric Therapeutics' (ASX:CHM) CEO and Managing Director Jennifer Chow provides an overview progress since the company's IPO and discusses next steps.Melissa Darmawan:
Thanks for tuning in. I'm Melissa Darmawan for Finance News. Joining me today to talk about a milestone for Chimeric Therapeutics (ASX:CHM)
is Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director Jennifer Chow.Melissa Darmawan:
Jennifer, great to see you and happy new year.Jennifer Chow:
Happy new year, Melissa. It is amazing to see you, as always.Melissa Darmawan:
Thank you, and welcome back to the network. Having just passed the one-year anniversary of your IPO, could you talk us through any reflection points about your first year?Jennifer Chow:
Absolutely, Melissa. It has been an incredible and crazy first year, so lots and lots of growth. We certainly believe that we are the fastest-growing cell therapy company in Australia over what we've been able to achieve in our first year.
When we started 2021, we had one asset with one clinical program in one disease area, and a year later, in the beginning of 2022, we now have seven assets in development, eight different clinical programs, and that spans across ten different disease areas.
So, an incredible amount of growth in our assets and our clinical programs. And then, to go alongside that, Melissa, we've had some great growth in our people as well. So, we've brought in a few additional new heads. We started '21 with two people, now we're up to about five or six, all with incredible cell therapy expertise. And we've been able to bring in, over the course of the last year, a number of scientists and collaborators that are world-renowned in this space to really provide us with great guidance and feedback.
So, a very busy first year, but lots of positive momentum.Melissa Darmawan:
Now, with the expanded pipeline and programs, what are you looking forward to in 2022, and what could investors expect?Jennifer Chow:
Yeah, there will be lots of milestones to look forward to, Melissa, across all of our programs in 2022. With the program that we brought in at the end of '21, our CORE-NK Platform, we're actually going to take that and start developing that pre-clinically so we can get that ready for clinic. So, that's really what we're going to be looking at doing this year with that asset.
Our CDH17 CAR T, the one that we licensed from the University of Pennsylvania last year, we're actually moving that with great progress through to its IND submission, and it's that IND that allows us to open up the clinical trial.
And then, with Chlorotoxin, which is obviously our lead asset, we have now data in metastatic melanoma. So, we're putting together all of the package to be able to open a trial in metastatic melanoma. And, most importantly, and certainly something that everybody is always looking for, is we're continuing to advance that Phase 1 clinical trial that's ongoing right now in glioblastoma patients.Melissa Darmawan:
Speaking of the Chlorotoxin CAR T trial in glioblastoma, so "GBM", you announced recently that the trial had completed its second dose level. Are you able to provide any insight into the results so far and also, for those tuning in for the first time, what GBM means?Jennifer Chow:
So GBM, I'll start with that one, Melissa, GBM is glioblastoma, and that is a type of brain cancer. And it is sadly a very fatal type of cancer. And so patients that are diagnosed with glioblastoma, or GBM, generally are expected not to even live past a year. So, definitely there is a need for better therapies for these patients.
With our trial, Melissa, you have perfect timing because that is the question I always get asked, is, "What does the data look like? Can you tell us anything about the data?" And although, with this second dose level, we really had anticipated it would take a little longer for us to get results, we were able to share a very top-line set of results this morning, and we were very pleased to be able to announce that we are continuing to see a strong safety signal. Patients generally in the second dose level well-tolerated the therapy. There were no dose-limiting toxicities. And we continue to see an activity signal, with two out of the three patients that were treated actually achieving disease stability.
So, very exciting for us to continue to see that positive safety and that emerging efficacy signal in that second dose cohort. So, perfectly timed question today.Melissa Darmawan:
Great to hear. And before I let you go, Jennifer, so what's next for the trial?Jennifer Chow:
So for the trial, now, we are actually enrolling patients in the third dose level. And that's exciting for us because this now is a higher dose of Chlorotoxin CAR T cells. And we are really looking forward to seeing whether or not that's going to have an even stronger therapeutic effect for patients. So, our next announcement that we'll be looking forward to is the first patient in that dose cohort having been dosed, Melissa.Melissa Darmawan:
All right. Jennifer Chow, always great to catch up with you on the progress. For those who want deeper insight into Chimeric Therapeutics, please join us for our next online investor event
on Tuesday 22 February at 12:30 AEST. Jennifer, thanks once again, and I look forward to the next update.Jennifer Chow:
Thanks so much, Melissa. It's always great to catch up with you.Ends