On June 7, 2023 MAIA Biotechnology, Inc. (NYSE American: MAIA) reported its second broad provisional patent application covering the composition of matter for a new telomere-targeting molecule (Press release, MAIA Biotechnology, JUN 7, 2023, View Source [SID1234632573]). MAIA is creating and evaluating multiple telomere-targeting compounds designed to modify the telomeric structure through the cancer cell – intrinsic telomerase activity – and thus cause the death of these cells. The studies, conducted in vitro in multiple cancer cell lines and in vivo in several pre-clinical cancer models, demonstrated the intended mechanism of action and high-level anti-cancer activity for these new molecules.
MAIA has nominated a new molecular entity candidate (designated as MAIA-2021- 029) for further advancement into preclinical GLP-toxicity and other studies, and may advance this candidate into human clinical trials upon completion of the required preclinical evaluations. The patent titled "TUMOR REDOX-ACTIVATED 6-THIOPURINE CONTAINING DIMER COMPOUNDS" further adds to MAIA’s Telomere-Targeting Molecule Program, which includes THIO, the lead therapeutic candidate currently being evaluated in a Phase 2 clinical trial, and follow-on compounds MAIA-2021-020 and MAIA-2022-012, patented in the fourth quarter of 2022.
"The discovery and preclinical advancements of these new telomere-targeting compounds represent another significant chapter for MAIA. We have observed impressive single-agent activity in several different tumor types for the new candidates, as well as in combination with immune checkpoint inhibitors," said Sergei Gryaznov, Ph.D., MAIA Chief Scientific Officer. "The observed anti-cancer activity in vitro and in vivo is quite remarkable, often leading to complete tumor eliminations. We are working diligently to advance these candidates toward clinical development."
"The development of proprietary new molecular entity candidates is a key component to MAIA’s strategy and greatly increases the chances to bring a highly efficacious telomere-targeting therapy to market. Our molecules can be used in the treatment of multiple cancer indications, and with the excellent preliminary results observed in our ongoing Phase II trial evaluating THIO in patients with Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, we look forward to announcing further developments of MAIA’s proprietary new molecular entity candidates," said MAIA Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Vlad Vitoc, M.D.
THIO (6-thio-dG or 6-thio-2’-deoxyguanosine) is an investigational telomere-targeting agent currently in clinical development to evaluate its activity in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC). Telomeres, along with the enzyme telomerase, play a fundamental role in the survival of cancer cells and their resistance to current therapies. THIO is being developed as a second or later line of treatment for NSCLC for patients that have progressed beyond the standard-of-care regimen of existing checkpoint inhibitors.