The purpose of the partnership is to continue the research and development of cancer vaccines that increase normal body immune responses to help immune cells naturally expand and be able to eliminate infected or cancerous cells without damaging healthy tissue.
The two companies will explore the potential benefits of combining Vedantra’s albumin-binding, lymph node-targeting amphiphile technology with Neon’s neoantigen vaccine research.
Julian Adams, PhD, executive chairman of Vedantra, said in a press release that Vendantra was excited about working with Neon “to explore the various vaccine opportunities that exist with both of our company’s programs.
“Although our albumin-binding amphiphile technologies have the potential to be effective at combating cancer by enhancing the body’s natural immune responses, our partnership has clear benefits to exploring innovative ways to synergistically enhance both of our programs,” he said.
Neoantigens are a result of accumulating somatic mutations and foreign sources, like viruses. The process starts with the coupling of a highly specific lipid construct to the neoantigen. The resulting conjugate binds to albumin upon injection and carries the neoantigen to the lymph node directly where T-cells are activated toward a particular target.
Albumin-binding amphiphilic peptides that deliver an antigen payload directly to the lymph nodes provide a prosperous setting for the development of large amounts of poly-functional CD8 T-cells that are specifically designed to attack tumors.
“In addition to the continued development of Vedantra’s therapeutic technologies, we are pleased to move forward on a collaboration that could place both Vedantra and Neon at the forefront of cancer vaccine development,” Adams added.
Darrel Irvine, PhD, founder and scientific consultant of Vedantra and a professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), said Vedantra’s years of research that led to its proprietary platform technologies “could be further enhanced through a collaboration with a company like Neon.
“We are excited for the opportunity to explore and evaluate the potential benefits of applying this technology to neoantigen-based vaccines,” Irvine added.