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Mol Cancer Ther. 2015 Apr;14(4):964-72. doi: 10.1158/1535-7163.MCT-14-0924. Epub 2015 Feb 5.

Nonclinical Safety Evaluation of VX15/2503, a Humanized IgG4 Anti-SEMA4D Antibody.

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Vaccinex, Inc., Rochester, New York.
Vaccinex, Inc., Rochester, New York.


The humanized IgG4 monoclonal antibody VX15/2503 bound with 1 to 5 nmol/L affinity to purified recombinant semaphorin 4D (SEMA4D; CD100) produced using murine, rat, cynomolgus macaque, and human sequences. The affinity for native SEMA4D expressed on macaque T lymphocytes was approximately 0.6 nmol/L. Tissues from rats and cynomolgus macaques demonstrated specific staining only with resident lymphocytes. Single-dose and one-month toxicology/PK studies used VX15/2503 dose levels of 0 to 100 mg/kg. No toxicity was observed with either species in these studies, thus the no observed adverse effect level (NOAEL) was 100 mg/kg. Cmax, exposure, and half-life values were similar for both rats and macaques. The NOAEL in a primate maximum feasible dose study was 200 mg/kg. Saturation of T-cell-associated SEMA4D occurred following administration of single doses of 0.1 mg/kg and above; five weekly injections of VX15/2503 at a dose level of 100 mg/kg produced saturation lasting for more than 120 and 130 days, respectively, for rats and primates. Macaques administered five weekly doses of VX15/2503 showed dose-dependent reductions of 2- to 3-fold in T-cell SEMA4D (cSEMA4D) expression levels compared with controls. Reduced cSEMA4D expression levels continued until serum antibody concentrations were 2 to 5 μg/mL, and thereafter normal cSEMA4D levels were restored. On the basis of these data, a phase I clinical study of the safety and tolerability of VX15/2503 was conducted, enrolling adult patients with advanced solid tumor diseases; a single-dose, dose escalation, phase I safety study was also initiated with subjects with multiple sclerosis.

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