Swiss Biotech Days
24 April 2023
European Congress of Virology
4 May 2023
On September 30, 2019, 100 scientific professionals gathered in Paris for the 1st edition of a unique symposium to discuss “Innovative & Integrated Solution Providers in Translational Research to Develop Immunotherapies – Toward Next Generation of Solution Providers”.
The aim of this symposium was to address the current trends in Immunotherapies discovery & development from an academic, industrial and regulatory affairs point of view.
The development of immunotherapies faces major challenges such as the inability to predict treatment efficacy and patient response; the need for additional biomarkers; the development of resistance to immunotherapies; the lack of translational tools; the optimization of clinical study designs thanks to precision medicine.
Therefore, expected innovations should include more targeted treatments, the development of personalized biomarker profiles, drug combination therapies to improve efficacy and reduce toxicity.
Open innovation can be tapped and used to open up the necessary and expected innovations thanks to the cross-linking of knowledge and know-how from both Pharma or Biotech industries and external innovation partners.
Within this framework, Oncodesign, Cynbiose, ERBC, Aepodia and PharmaLex have built up a network, convinced that these complex developments require the use of a collaborative and creative research organizations network permitting Pharma or Biotech companies to manage innovative projects from discovery stage to clinical trials. We bring together technological platforms, skills and knowledge, ability to set up an appropriate project governance structure within a comprehensive view of the immunotherapy development process.
Exploring the current trends in immunotherapies discovery & development from an academic, industrial & regulatory affairs point of view, the event was well received. Three expert speakers took to the stage to share research, findings & insights.
Dr Laurence Laigle, director of translational & clinical research, Center for Therapeutic Innovation, Immuno-Inflammatory Diseases, Servier, shared her views on the ‘Clinical Development of Immunotherapies: The Promise of Clinical Translation’. Over the past 60 years, a lot of trials have failed, probably in part because of disease heterogeneity. Implementing a precision medicine approach is vital. It is about making a hypothesis to be tested in different models involving biomarker-led clinical trials; an iterative process that requires access to blood & tissue from large patient cohorts.
Professor Benoit Van Den Eynde, director, Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, added “Preclinical research in oncology has to change. One of the best ways to improve outcomes is to combine immunotherapies with something else, for example, radiotherapy. Only then will we start to see more improved outcomes for our patients.”
Professor Marc Pallardy, head of the Department of Toxicology, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Paris-Sud, France, concluded by speaking on ‘Regulatory Aspects for Non-Clinical Development of Immunotherapy Test Items’. He underlined the adverse effects detected in clinics, from which a lot has been learnt about the biology and the mechanism of action of biologics.
In most of these cases, it is important to integrate the known biological activity of the molecule to address the human safety of these molecules (anti-CD3, IL-2, trastuzumab); knowledge of interspecies differences regarding the biology of the target is also essential.
Five high quality roundtables took place in the afternoon, led by Oncodesign and co-organisers ERBC, Cynbiose, Aepodia and PharmaLex. The focus was on tight understanding and collaboration between all partners, resulting in high quality scientific solutions.