How BMS 986178 works
BMS 986178 is an immunotherapy, so it does not directly act on cancer cells but instead boosts the immune response to encourage the body to fight a tumor.
It is a monoclonal antibody, a protein that is designed to interact with a specific target, that binds to and activates a protein called OX40. OX40 (also known as CD134 or TNFRSF4) is a receptor protein that is produced by immune cells called T-cells. When the receptor is activated, it an increase in the number of T-cells and promotes their survival.
T-cells have the ability to recognize and kill cancer cells, based on activation by tumor-associated antigens (TAAs). TAAs are proteins produced by tumor cells that would not normally be present in the body. An increase in T-cells activated by OX40 increases the chance that these immune cells will be stimulated by TAAs to attack tumor cells.
BMS 986178 in clinical trials
A total of 435 patients are currently being enrolled in a Phase 1/2 clinical trial (NCT02737475) investigating the effects of BMS 986178 alone or in combination with Opdivo (nivolumab) and/or Yervoy (ipilimumab) on advanced solid tumors. Both Opdivo and Yervoy are types of immune checkpoint inhibitors; they act to remove the barrier that some cancer cells use to evade detection from the immune system, helping T-cells to recognize them as a target.
The study will monitor for adverse effects as a result of the treatment for up to four years, and give a preliminary assessment of its anti-tumor activity through measures of overall response rate and progression-free survival over a two-year period. It will include a dose-escalation stage to determine the maximum tolerated dose of BMS 986178, alone or in combination, and an expansion stage at the determined dose to assess the treatment’s safety and efficacy.
Enrollment and other information on this trial, taking place across North America, Europe, and Israel, is available by clicking on the trial’s identification number. Adults with advanced, recurrent or metastatic cancers are being recruited.
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