Gerhard Ehninger, MD, on Managing Toxicities With Switchable CARs in AML


The professor at University Hospital Dresden discussed the positive safety profile of Unicar-T-CD123.

“I compare it with traffic: if you drivethrough a city, you must stop and go. I feel that in risky epitopes, you must have this stop process. When it comes to oncology, there were patients who were dying in trials, with HER2, for example, as a target, but we would be able to go after these risky epitopes because when toxicities get serious, then we can stop and restart again.”

Unicar-T-CD123 (AVC-101; AvenCell), a switchable universal chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy, has shown positive data in a first-in-human phase 1/2 clinical trial (NCT04230265) in patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML). These data, which validated the switchable target module mechanism, were presented by Gerhard Ehninger, MD, professor, internal medicine, University Hospital Dresden, at the 64th Annual American Society of Hematology (ASH) Meeting, held December 10-13, 2022, in New Orleans, Louisiana. 

CGTLive spoke with Ehninger to learn more about the feasibility of targeting CD123 as an antigen with the switchable therapy, and how toxicities were easily managed with the switching mechanism. He discussed how the therapy helps address unmet needs in the AML population and more research to be done.

Phase 1 dose escalation study of the rapidly switchable universal CAR-T therapy Unicar-T-CD123 in relapsed/refractory AML. Presented at: 64th Annual ASH Meeting, December 10-13, 2022, New Orleans, Louisiana. Abstract #979
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