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Treos Bio, Roche Partner on Colorectal Cancer Combination Trial

NEW YORK – Treos Bio on Wednesday announced a partnership with Roche to evaluate its polypeptide therapy, PolyPEPI1018, with Roche's PD-L1 inhibitor atezolizumab (Tecentriq) in a Phase I/II clinical trial involving microsatellite stable, metastatic colorectal cancer patients.

Treos will conduct the trial and maintain full ownership of PolyPEPI1018. Roche will provide atezolizumab to study participants. The partners didn't disclose the financial terms of their agreement.

The study, which Treos will begin toward the end of this year, follows another Phase I/II trial of PolyPEPI1018 with standard-of-care maintenance therapy in microsatellite stable colorectal cancer patients. The company recently shared data from this trial showing that PolyPEPI1018 was well-tolerated and active against multiple tumor targets.

Specifically, in that trial, dubbed OBERTO-101, adding the polypeptide immunotherapy to patients' maintenance treatment regimens resulted in a strong tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte response against "cold tumors." According to a statement from the trial's principal investigator Joleen Hubbard of the Mayo Clinic, the results suggest that PolyPEPI1019 could "convert a 'cold' tumor to a 'hot' tumor and increase the effect of checkpoint inhibitors."

"Following the encouraging results from this trial, in which some patients experienced surprising clinical benefits, I look forward to treating patients with this new combination in the upcoming Phase I/II trial," Hubbard said in a statement.

PolyPEPI-1018, Treos' lead product candidate, is an off-the-shelf immunotherapy, which outside of its partnership with Roche, the London-based firm is developing as a first-line maintenance and third-line treatment for metastatic colorectal cancer with a potential companion diagnostic. The test relies on Treos' proprietary PASCal computational tool, which identifies patients' personal epitopes that are likely to help them mount T-cell responses against their tumors.