DURHAM, NC—Chimerix, a biopharmaceutical company focused on accelerating the development of medicines to treat cancer and other serious diseases, in January announced that it had acquired Oncoceutics Inc., a privately held, clinical-stage biotechnology company developing imipridones, a novel class of compounds. The move is in part intended to expand the Chimerix pipeline with a late-stage oncology program.
Oncoceutics’ lead product candidate, ONC201, has been shown in clinical testing to selectively induce cell death in multiple cancer types. ONC201 is currently in a registrational clinical trial for recurrent H3 K27M-mutant glioma, and a confirmatory response rate assessment is expected in 2021.
ONC201 is an orally administered small-molecule dopamine receptor D2 (DRD2) antagonist and caseinolytic protease (ClpP) agonist in late-stage clinical development for recurrent gliomas that harbor the H3 K27M mutation.
“Patients with H3 K27M-mutant glioma are in desperate need of better therapeutic alternatives,” said Dr. Patrick Wen, director of the Center for Neuro-Oncology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and professor of neurology at Harvard Medical School. “The tumor responses and safety profile we have observed with ONC201 in this devastating disease are compelling, and I look forward to the possibility of accelerating its delivery to patients.”
“Glioma remains one of the highest areas of unmet need in oncology where even first-line radiation therapy, as well as temozolomide in eligible patients, is not meaningfully effective and subsequent therapies are considered palliative,” said Mike Sherman, CEO of Chimerix. “Further, there are no molecularly targeted therapies for patients which harbor the H3 K27M mutation in this life-limiting disease. Given the urgent need and based on discussions with the FDA, there is a potential accelerated path to approval based on overall response ... Our team is uniquely positioned to advance ONC201, given our considerable experience bringing targeted oncology products through the regulatory process.”