News Details

Compugen Announces Bispecific Antibody Derived from COM902 to Enter Clinical Development

August 19, 2021
- Phase 1/2 clinical study will evaluate AZD2936, a TIGIT/PD-1 bispecific antibody of AstraZeneca, in non-small cell lung cancer
- COM902, Compugen's high affinity anti-TIGIT antibody was licensed in 2018 to AstraZeneca for exclusive use in bi-specific and multi-specific antibody products, excluding PVRIG and PVRL2 TIGIT-bispecific products

HOLON, Israel, Aug. 19, 2021  /PRNewswire/ -- Compugen Ltd. (NASDAQ: CGEN), a leader in predictive discovery and development of first-in-class therapeutics for cancer immunotherapy, today announced that a bispecific antibody of AstraZeneca derived from COM902, Compugen's high affinity anti-TIGIT antibody, will advance into clinical development. AstraZeneca (LSE/STO/Nasdaq: AZN) plans to initiate a Phase 1/2 study evaluating AZD2936, a TIGIT/PD-1 bispecific antibody, in patients with advanced or metastatic non-small cell lung cancer.

COM902 was licensed to AstraZeneca in 2018 exclusively for the development of bispecific and multi-specific antibody products, with AstraZeneca responsible for all research, development, and commercial activities. Compugen retains all other rights to the program with exception to those licensed to AstraZeneca.

"The advancement into the clinic of this bispecific derived from COM902 provides additional support for COM902's therapeutic potential by a global leader in the development of antibody-based oncology therapeutics," said Anat Cohen-Dayag, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Compugen. "We believe COM902's properties, including its high affinity and superior binding compared to other anti-TIGITs tested in a preclinical setting, were key attributes that contributed to the decision to obtain rights for the development of bispecific products and further advancement of AZD2936 to the clinic. The exclusive license agreement with AstraZeneca allows us to broaden our product opportunities and specifically capitalize on bispecific products while maintaining ownership of COM902 for the development of various combination therapies in general, and DNAM-axis related specifically, including in combination with COM701 our first in class anti-PVRIG antibody. We are excited to disclose the identity of our program licensed to AstraZeneca and we look forward to reporting future milestone payments as they occur"

About the Compugen-AstraZeneca License Agreement

In 2018, Compugen and AstraZeneca entered into an agreement by which Compugen provided an exclusive license to AstraZeneca for the development of bispecific and multi-specific antibody products derived from Compugen's monospecific antibodies that bind to TIGIT, including COM902, with AstraZeneca responsible for all research, development, and commercial activities. AstraZeneca has the right to create multiple products under this license. Compugen has received a $10 million upfront payment and an additional $2 million milestone payment to date, out of up to an aggregate milestone amount of $200 million that the Company is eligible to receive in development, regulatory and commercial milestones for the first product, as well as tiered royalties on future product sales. If additional products are developed, additional milestones and royalties would be due to Compugen. Under the terms of the license agreement, Compugen retained all other rights to its entire pipeline of programs as monotherapies and in combination with other products.

About the Study

Details are available on ClinicalTrials.gov, identifier: NCT04995523

About COM902

COM902 is a high affinity, fully human antibody that blocks the interaction of TIGIT with PVR, its ligand, and consequently enhances T cell function. Data suggests that COM902 has in vitro activity comparable or superior to TIGIT antibodies in clinical development. It is currently being evaluated by the Company in a Phase 1 clinical studies in patients with advanced malignancies who have exhausted all available standard therapies. Compugen has demonstrated in preclinical studies that simultaneous inhibition of TIGIT and PVRIG, the two coinhibitory arms of the DNAM axis, can increase antitumor immune responses, which may be further enhanced with the addition of PD-1 blockade. These data suggest that treatment with COM701 and COM902, targeting PVRIG and TIGIT, respectively, alone or in combination with a PD-1 inhibitor, has the potential to expand immuno-oncology treatment to patient populations who are non-responsive or refractory to existing immunotherapies.  The discovery of TIGIT, using the Company's computational discovery platform, was published by Compugen in October 2009 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

About Compugen  

Compugen is a clinical-stage therapeutic discovery and development company utilizing its broadly applicable, predictive computational discovery platforms to identify novel drug targets and develop therapeutics in the field of cancer immunotherapy. Compugen's lead product candidate, COM701, a first-in-class anti-PVRIG antibody, for the treatment of solid tumors, is undergoing Phase 1 single, dual, and triple combination studies. In addition, COM902, Compugen's antibody targeting TIGIT, is in a Phase 1 single and dual combination studies pursued by Compugen, independent of anti-PD1. Compugen's therapeutic pipeline also includes early-stage immuno-oncology programs focused largely on myeloid targets. Compugen is headquartered in Israel, with offices in South San Francisco, CA. Compugen's shares are listed on Nasdaq and the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol CGEN. For additional information, please visit Compugen's corporate website at www.cgen.com

Forward-Looking Statement

This press release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Securities Act of 1933 and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and the safe-harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements are based on the current beliefs, expectations, and assumptions of Compugen. Forward-looking statements can be identified using terminology such as "will," "may," "expects," "anticipates," "believes," "potential," "plan," "goal," "estimate," "likely," "should," "confident," and "intends," and similar expressions that are intended to identify forward-looking statements, although not all forward-looking statements contain these identifying words. Forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements relating to AstraZeneca (LSE/STO/Nasdaq: AZN) plans to initiate a Phase 1/2 study evaluating AZD2936, COM902's therapeutic potential and our plan to report future milestone payments as they occur. These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties that may cause the actual results, performance, or achievements of Compugen to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Among these risks: the effect of the global COVID-19 pandemic may continue to negatively impact the global economy and may also adversely affect Compugen's business; Compugen's business model is substantially dependent on entering into collaboration agreements with third parties and Compugen may not be successful in generating adequate revenues or commercializing aspects of its business model; Compugen's approach to the discovery of therapeutic products is based on its proprietary computational target discovery infrastructure, which is unproven clinically; and Compugen does not know whether it will be able to discover and develop additional potential product candidates or products of commercial value. These risks and other risks are more fully discussed in the "Risk Factors" section of Compugen's most recent Annual Report on Form 20-F as filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as well as other documents that may be subsequently filed by Compugen from time to time with the SEC. In addition, any forward-looking statements represent Compugen's views only as of the date of this release and should not be relied upon as representing its views as of any subsequent date. Compugen does not assume any obligation to update any forward-looking statements unless required by law.

Company contact:  
Yvonne Naughton, PhD  
Head of Investor Relations and Corporate Communications
Email: ir@cgen.com  
Tel: +1 (628) 241-0071  

Investor Relations contact:
John Mullaly
LifeSci Advisors, LLC
Email: jmullaly@lifesciadvisors.com  
Tel: +1 (617) 429-3548

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SOURCE Compugen Ltd.

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