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Aduro Biotech Announces Initiation of Phase 2 Clinical Trial of CRS-207 in Combination with KEYTRUDA® (pembrolizumab) for the Treatment of Previously-Treated Gastroesophageal Adenocarcinoma

BERKELEY, Calif., June 29, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Aduro Biotech, Inc. (Nasdaq:ADRO), a biopharmaceutical company with three distinct immunotherapy technologies, today announced  the initiation of the Phase 2 clinical study designed to evaluate the tolerability, safety and efficacy of CRS-207, Aduro’s lead listeria-based immunotherapy construct (LADD), in combination with KEYTRUDA® (pembrolizumab), an anti-PD-1 therapy marketed by Merck (known as MSD outside the United States and Canada), for the treatment of patients with gastroesophageal adenocarcinoma who have failed two prior chemotherapy treatments. Clinical trial sites have been activated and the study is open for enrollment.

“Gastroesophageal adenocarcinoma is an aggressive, difficult to treat cancer for which there is currently no FDA-approved therapy for those in need of a third-line treatment option,” stated Natalie Sacks, M.D., chief medical officer of Aduro Biotech. “We are pleased to be evaluating the CRS-207/KEYTRUDA combination in this Phase 2 clinical trial for late-stage gastroesophageal cancer patients and hope to see similar synergistic anti-cancer activity as observed in preclinical studies with this investigational treatment regimen.”

The multicenter, single-arm, open-label Phase 2 study is designed to evaluate the safety and efficacy of CRS-207 with KEYTRUDA in adults with gastric, gastroesophageal junction, or esophageal adenocarcinoma who have received two prior systemic chemotherapy treatment regimens for advanced disease.  The trial will be conducted at up to 15 sites and will enroll approximately 70 patients. The primary efficacy endpoint is objective response rate, defined as the proportion of patients with either complete or partial responses.  For additional information about the study, please visit (search identifier NCT03122548). 

About Gastroesophageal Adenocarcinoma
Gastroesophageal adenocarcinoma is an aggressive form of cancer effecting the esophagus and/or stomach. In 2015, the National Cancer Institute estimated 16,980 new diagnoses of esophageal cancer and 24,590 new diagnoses of gastric cancer will occur in the United States, with an overall five-year survival rate of 20 percent and 30 percent, respectively.  Approximately 50 percent of patients present with unresectable or locally advanced disease at the time of diagnosis. Up to approximately 50 percent of these cancer tumor types are known to express mesothelin, a tumor-associated antigen with limited expression on the surface of normal tissues. Currently, there is no U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved therapy for the third-line treatment of gastroesophageal adenocarcinoma.

About LADD and CRS-207
LADD is Aduro's proprietary platform of live, attenuated double-deleted Listeria monocytogenes strains that have been engineered to generate an innate immune response and to express tumor-associated antigens to induce tumor-specific T cell-mediated immunity.   CRS-207, the company’s lead LADD product candidate, has been engineered to express the tumor-associated antigen mesothelin, which is over-expressed in many cancers including gastric cancer and esophageal adenocarcinoma, as well as mesothelioma, pancreatic, non-small cell lung, ovarian and endometrial cancers. 

About Aduro
Aduro Biotech, Inc. is an immunotherapy company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of therapies that transform the treatment of challenging diseases. Aduro's technology platforms, which are designed to harness the body's natural immune system, are being investigated in cancer indications and have the potential to expand into autoimmune and infectious diseases. Aduro's LADD technology platform is based on proprietary attenuated strains of Listeria that have been engineered to express tumor-associated antigens to induce specific and targeted immune responses. This platform is being developed as a treatment for multiple indications, including mesothelioma, gastric/esophageal, ovarian, lung and prostate cancers. Additionally, a personalized form of LADD, or pLADD, is being developed utilizing tumor neoantigens that are specific to an individual patient’s tumor. Aduro's STING Pathway Activator platform is designed to activate the STING receptor in immune cells, resulting in a potent tumor-specific immune response. ADU-S100 is the first STING Pathway Activator compound to enter the clinic and is currently being evaluated in a Phase 1 study in patients with cutaneously accessible metastatic solid tumors or lymphomas. Aduro’s B-select monoclonal antibody platform includes a number of immune modulating assets in research and preclinical development. Aduro is collaborating with leading global pharmaceutical companies to expand its products and technology platforms. For more information, please visit

Cautionary Note on Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements for purposes of the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements include statements regarding our intentions or current expectations concerning, among other things, the combination of CRS-207 with pembrolizumab for the potential treatment of mesothelioma and gastric cancer, our technology platforms, plans, and the potential for eventual regulatory approval of our product candidates. In some cases, you can identify these statements by forward-looking words such as “may,” “will,” “continue,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “could,” “project,” “seek”, “expect” or the negative or plural of these words or similar expressions.  Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results and events to differ materially from those anticipated, including, but not limited to, our history of net operating losses and uncertainty regarding our ability to achieve profitability, our ability to develop and commercialize our product candidates, our ability to use and expand our technology platforms to build a pipeline of product candidates, our ability to obtain and maintain regulatory approval of our product candidates, our ability to operate in a competitive industry and compete successfully against competitors that have greater resources than we do, our reliance on third parties, and our ability to obtain and adequately protect intellectual property rights for our product candidates.  We discuss many of these risks in greater detail under the heading “Risk Factors” contained in our quarterly report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended March 31, 2017, which is on file with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Any forward-looking statements that we make in this press release speak only as of the date of this press release. We assume no obligation to update our forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, after the date of this press release.

KEYTRUDA® is a registered trademark of Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., a subsidiary of Merck & Co., Inc. Kenilworth, NJ, USA.

Sylvia Wheeler		
SVP, Corporate Affairs
510 809 9264		

Media Contact:
Susan Lehner
510 809 2137

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