UK-based cancer therapeutics firm Scancell (AIM: SCLP) was founded in 1997 as a spin-out from the University of Nottingham.
UK-based cancer therapeutics firm Scancell (AIM: SCLP) was founded in 1997 as a spin-out from the University of Nottingham. In December 2006 Scancell sold its pipeline of direct killing monoclonal antibodies to Arana Therapeutics, an Australian biopharmaceutical company. The deal allowed Scancell to focus its efforts entirely on its innovative ImmunoBody cancer vaccine programme.
Scancell's first clinical candidate drug, SCIB1, is a DNA vaccine which is being developed for the treatment of melanoma and is in Phase II clinical trials. SCIB1 is a plasmid DNA which encodes a human antibody molecule engineered to express a melanoma antigen called Tyrosinase-Related Protein 2 (TRP2) plus two helper T cell epitopes. Following immunization, the engineered antibody will be expressed and be taken up by dendritic cells, resulting in the development of immune responses against tumor cells expressing the TRP2 antigen. The major advantage of the Immunobody technology is that the Fc component of the engineered antibody will be recognized by the high affinity CD64 receptor present on dendritic cells, leading to a significant enhancement of both the frequency and avidity of the T cell immune response. The induction of high avidity T cells against TRP-2 is expected to lead to the inhibition and regression of both primary and metastatic tumor growth.
The company's pipeline also includes ImmunoBody vaccines for both the treatment of cancer and infectious disease. SCIB2, stimulates immune responses to the lung cancer antigen NY-ESO-1. It may also have potential utility in esophageal, liver, gastric, prostate, ovarian and bladder cancers.