NCCN Awards Research Grants to Support Studies of Mirvetuximab Soravtansine in Various Cancers


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The National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN) Oncology Research Program (ORP) has awarded eight grants to investigators to support clinical and preclinical studies of mirvetuximab soravtansine (IMGN853) and advance scientific knowledge of its uses in ovarian and other folate receptor alpha (FRα)-positive cancers.

“This is another of the exciting research projects targeting unique vulnerabilities of cancer cells identified through molecular characterization of cancers,” said Robert C. Young, MD, Interim Vice President, NCCN ORP. “We are grateful to ImmunoGen for their funding of these eight promising studies.”

Mirvetuximab soravtansine is a potential new treatment for cancers that highly express FRα, which include most cases of ovarian cancer and certain endometrial, breast, and lung cancers. An antibody-drug conjugate, mirvetuximab soravtansine comprises an FRα-targeting antibody attached to a potent tubulin-acting agent, DM4. The antibody serves to target the compound specifically to cancer cells expressing FRα, and the DM4 serves to kill these cells.

Clinical Awardees

Kimberly Blackwell, MD

Kimberly Blackwell, MD

Mihaela Cristea, MD

Mihaela Cristea, MD

Stacey Moulder, MD, MSCI

Stacey Moulder, MD, MSCI

The following clinical studies were awarded funding:

  • Kimberly Blackwell, MD, Duke Cancer Institute, “Determining the Clinical Efficacy and Predictive Biomarkers of Mirvetuximab Soravtansine (IMGN853) in Folate Receptor Alpha–Expressing, Chemotherapy-Refractory Triple-Negative Breast Cancer”
  • Mihaela Cristea, MD, City of Hope Comprehensive Cancer Center, “A Phase I, Dose Escalation Safety and Tolerability Study of Mirvetuximab Soravtansine and Gemcitabine in Patients With FRα-Positive Recurrent Ovarian, Primary Peritoneal, Fallopian Tube, Endometrial, and Breast Cancer”
  • Stacey Moulder, MD, MSCI, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, “Women’s Triple-Negative First-Line Study: A Phase II Trial of Mirvetuximab Soravtansine in Patients with Localized Triple-Negative Breast Cancer With Tumors Predicted Insensitive to Standard Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy, Including a Lead in Cohort to Establish Activity in Patients With Metastatic Triple-Negative Breast Cancer”

Preclinical Awardees

Michael Birrer, MD, PhD

Michael Birrer, MD, PhD

Analisa DiFeo, PhD

Analisa DiFeo, PhD

John Hays, MD, PhD

John Hays, MD, PhD

Albert Craig Lockhart, MD

Albert Craig Lockhart, MD

Yunfei Wen, PhD

Yunfei Wen, PhD

 

The following preclinical studies were awarded funding:

  • Michael Birrer, MD, PhD, Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, “Mechanisms of Sensitivity and Resistance to Mirvetuximab Soravtansine: Ovarian Cancer and Mesothelioma”
  • Analisa DiFeo, PhD, Case Comprehensive Cancer Center/University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center and Cleveland Clinic Taussig Cancer Institute, “Identifying Susceptibilities and Candidate Pharmacodynamic Biomarkers for Mirvetuximab Soravtansine in High-Grade Ovarian and Endometrial Cancers”
  • John Hays, MD, PhD, The Ohio State University Cancer Center—James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute, “Regulation of Folate Receptor Alpha Expression and Mirvetuximab Soravtansine Sensitivity in Endometrial Cancer Through Selective Modulation of Estrogen Receptor”
  • Albert Craig Lockhart, MD, Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine, “89Zr-DFO Labeling of M9346A to Further Characterize the Biology and Efficacy of Mirvetuximab Soravtansine in Animal Models for Future Clinical Applications”
  • Yunfei Wen, PhD, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, “Promoting Autophagic Cell Death in High-Grade Serous Ovarian Cancer by Mirvetuximab Soravtansine”

The awardees responded to a Request for Proposals issued by the ORP to the NCCN Member Institutions. Submissions were peer reviewed by the NCCN Mirvetuximab Soravtansine Scientific Review Committee. The funded concepts were selected based on several criteria, including scientific merit, existing data, and the types of studies necessary to further evaluate the efficacy of mirvetuximab soravtansine.

For more information about NCCN ORP, visit NCCN.org/ORP. ■


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