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ESMO Open. 2018 Feb 1;3(2):e000303. doi: 10.1136/esmoopen-2017-000303. eCollection 2018.

Phase I study of tomuzotuximab, a glycoengineered therapeutic antibody against the epidermal growth factor receptor, in patients with advanced carcinomas.

Author information

Department of Oncology, Hematology and Bone Marrow Transplantation with Section Pneumology, Hubertus-Wald University Cancer Center, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Hamburg, Germany.
Fondazione IRCCS, Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori, Milano, Italy.
Department of Medical Oncology, National Center of Tumor Diseases, University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Germany.
Oncology Institute of Southern Switzerland, Ospedale Regionale Bellinzona e Valli, Bellinzona, Switzerland.
Immunomonitoring, Glycotope GmbH, Berlin, Germany.
R&D, Glycotope GmbH, Berlin, Germany.
Clinical Development, Glycotope GmbH, Berlin, Germny.
Clinical Development, Glycotope GmbH, Berlin, Germany.
Pharma Brains AG, Basel, Switzerland.
Department of Medical Oncology, Ospedale San Raffaele, Milano, Italy.



Changes in glycosylation of the constant domain (Fc) of monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) enhance antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity independently of downstream effects following receptor blockade by the antibody, thus extending their indication. We investigated the safety, pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics and antitumour activity of tomuzotuximab, an IgG1 glycoengineered mAb against the epidermal growth factor receptor with enhanced tumour cytotoxicity in a phase I dose-escalation study (NTC01222637).

Patients and methods:

Forty-one patients with advanced solid tumours refractory to standard therapies received tomuzotuximab weekly (12-1370 mg) or two-weekly (990 mg) on a three-plus-three dose escalation design.


A maximum tolerated dose was not reached. The most frequent treatment-related adverse events were infusion-related reactions in 31 (76%) patients (grade 3, 12%), mainly confined to the first dose, and skin toxicities (grade 1 or 2) in 30 (73%) patients. Hypomagnesaemia was observed in 9 out of 23 evaluable patients (39%). Similar to cetuximab, tomuzotuximab concentrations increased proportionally to dose from doses≥480 mg with a median terminal half life (t½) of 82 hours, range 55-113 hours. Antitumour activity included one complete response ongoing since more than 4.5 years in a patient with non-small-cell lung cancer and one partial response lasting 353 days in a patient with colorectal cancer. Twelve patients achieved stable disease (median, 166 days, range, 71-414 days) and two patients had prolonged control (>1 year) of their non-measurable disease.


Tomuzotuximab was safe and showed promising antitumour activity in heavily pretreated patients with advanced metastatic disease. A phase IIb trial of chemotherapy and weekly tomuzotuximab or cetuximab followed with maintenance therapy with the corresponding mAb in patients with recurrent or metastatic head and neck squamous cell carcinoma is ongoing.


egfr; glycoengineered; monoclonal antibody; phase I; tomuzotuximab

Conflict of interest statement

Competing interests: Employment or leadership position: HB, BD, SG, AZ, AD. Stock ownership: HB, SG, AD. MS was employee of Pharma Brains AG, which received funding for the study from Glycotope GmbH. Other remuneration: WF, Meeting participation to present the data at the American Society of Clinical Oncology 2013 Annual Meeting.

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