OncoSec establishes UCSF clinical site for phase II Merkel cell carcinoma trial

Wednesday, July 11, 2012 10:22 AM

OncoSec Medical, a biopharmaceutical company developing the advanced-stage OncoSec Medical System (OMS) ElectroOncology therapies to treat solid tumors, has established the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) as the second enrolling site for its phase II Merkel cell carcinoma study (OMS-I110).

"We are pleased to have established a clinical site at UCSF for our Merkel cell carcinoma trial that joins our previously established site at the University of Washington," said Punit Dhillon, president and CEO of OncoSec. "We are excited to be working with Dr. Siegrid Yu and UCSF in this Merkel cell carcinoma study. This is the third clinical trial conducted at this academic institution, which includes our ongoing trials for patients with metastatic melanoma and cutaneous T-cell lymphoma."

UCSF investigators are actively recruiting patients for this clinical trial. OMS-I110 was initiated at the University of Washington in January 2012, and the first patient was dosed there on January 6, 2012.

"There is a potential for electroporation to enhance the efficiency with which agents such as IL-12 can be delivered to Merkel cell carcinoma patients. We are glad to be joining the University of Washington in a trial to gauge the efficacy of this technique,” said Dr. Siegrid Yu, principal investigator and dermatologic surgeon at the UCSF.

A total of up to 15 patients with local and distant Merkel cell carcinoma will be enrolled in the phase II, single-arm, open-label multi-center study. The trial's primary endpoint is to assess the clinical and biologic effects of increased local expression of interleukin-12 (IL-12) protein in the tumor microenvironment following treatment with OMS ElectroImmunotherapy from baseline to two to four weeks after the first injection. It is anticipated that marked local expression of IL-12 in the tumor will induce an immunologic response in the tumor microenvironment, which may result in clinical benefit for the patient.

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