News Feature | April 7, 2014

Eisai Ally H3 Biomedicine To Present SF3B1 Data At AACR 2014

By Estel Grace Masangkay

Eisai announced that its collaborator H3 Biomedicine has named its lead investigational drug candidate for its SF3B1 program targeting novel genetic mutations involved in multiple cancers. H3 Biopharmaceutical will present the data at a symposium during the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Annual Meeting 2014.

Markus Warmuth, President and CEO of H3 Biomedicine, said, “We are excited to present the research surrounding SF3B1, a novel drug target in some of the hardest-to-treat cancers, including chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), and solid tumors such as pancreatic cancer. Our research has shed significant light into the mechanism of SF3B1 mutations and their role in aberrant splicing and irregular epigenetic controls. At H3, we have translated these findings into a fast-moving drug discovery project. We have identified a lead drug candidate for the program in less than two years: a remarkable timeframe for a novel drug target."

SF3B1 (splicing factor 3B subunit 1) is a component of the human genetic splicing machinery implicated and shown to be usually mutated in multiple cancers. Implicated mutations in SF3B1 in several cancers have been noted in recent publications, including hematological malignancies and solid tumors found in skin and pancreatic cancers. The company will present findings that support targeting splicing inhibitors as a promising investigational approach for patients with cancer carrying SF3B1 mutations during the AACR mini-symposium.

“The opportunity to share this data at AACR— a prestigious peer-reviewed conference —validates our approach to developing genomic-based precision medicines. We have commenced IND-enabling studies with our top candidate and are hoping to quickly advance the molecule through these studies,” concluded Dr. Warmuth.

The biopharmaceutical company specializes in the discovery and development of precision oncology treatments. H3 Biomedicines is in collaboration with Eisai and provides research funding and access to global biopharmaceutical company capabilities and resources.