Positive early data for first soluble TCR therapy for HIV

T cells

A Phase I safety and pharmacodynamic activity trial shows IMC-M113V, the first soluble T cell receptor (TCR) therapy for people living with HIV, is well tolerated. 

Immunocore presented the findings at the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infection (CROI). 

The bispecific soluble TCR therapy built on the company’s ImmTAX technology which is being developed for the treatment of people living with HIV (PLWH). 

IMC-M113V is an immunotherapeutic approach designed to specifically eliminate CD4+ cells that are persistently infected with HIV (‘reservoirs’).  

The drug targets a peptide derived from the Gag protein that is presented by HLA*A02 on the surface of HIV infected cells. Reduction in the number of these cells is one way to potentially achieve a state of viral suppression in the absence of anti-retroviral medications, or a ‘functional cure.’ 

“IMC-M113V, which is designed to redirect T cells to eliminate HIV-infected cells, was well tolerated at doses where we observed biomarkers of T cell engagement,” said David Berman, Head of R&D of Immunocore. “We are now enrolling people living with HIV in the multiple ascending dose part of the trial where we will evaluate the active dosing schedules that could lead to functional cure.” 

Dr Linos Vandekerckhove, Laboratory Director, HIV Cure Research Center, University Hospital Ghent, Belgium, added: “HIV continues to be a huge global health challenge. Although people living with HIV can control their disease with antiretroviral therapies, lifelong treatment is needed as reservoirs of HIV infected cells persist. If a functional cure could be found this could significantly transform treatment of this chronic infectious disease and decrease stigma of HIV.”

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