Targovax and Agenus team up on mutant KRAS cancer vaccine

By Andre Rickard, The Science Advisory Board contributing writer

March 8, 2022 -- Targovax and Agenus have entered into a clinical collaboration and supply agreement to combine Targovax's TG mutant KRAS cancer vaccines with Agenus' clinically validated and U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved QS-21 Stimulon adjuvant.

Under the collaboration with Targovax, Agenus will supply QS-21 Stimulon and scientific support for up to three initial TG01 clinical trials in different cancer indications. If the clinical results meet certain prespecified performance targets, the collaboration will be extended into an exclusive pivotal development and commercialization agreement where Agenus will be entitled to tiered double-digit royalties on future TG vaccine sales.

The TG vaccines are peptide mixtures designed to elicit polyvalent immune responses against the most frequent mutations in the RAS gene family, which drive up to 30% of all cancers, Agenus said.

TG01 has shown promise in phase I/II clinical trials, and Targovax has recently been awarded two research grants providing up to 18 million Norwegian kroner (nearly $2 million U.S.) in funding to advance the TG program, the company noted.

QS-21 Stimulon is a purified, natural saponin proprietary to Agenus. It has been widely studied in over 120 clinical trials and consistently demonstrated powerful antibody and cell-mediated immune responses as well as a favorable safety profile, the company noted.

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